Vincent Metropol 4 Zabaione
Vincent Bass Guitars was founded by Johannes Pöhlmann along with Tobias Helmlinger, who is running the company. Vincent are based in Rupprechtstegen in the mid-south part of Germany.
Johannes Pöhlmann’s vision for building basses is clearly to focus on passive basses with the classic vibe that we all know. But then he adds some twists that allow old-school awesomeness to evolve gracefully into the new century with great acoustic integrity, very clear and punchy tone, as well as fast response in general.
It is very important for Vincent Bass Guitars that the production of their instruments is as sustainable as possible. For example, most of the metal parts are made locally and the bodies are exclusively made of Franconian alder, which is very much in the neighbourhood. And to top it off, the woodshop is located directly above a river, making it possible to be powered entirely by a hydropower plant. In short, Vincent Bass Guitars is all about great tone and a huge footprint on the groove, while keeping a very light footprint on the environment.
The Metropol 4 in amazing Zabaione color simply has the ‘what you see is what you get’ vibe to it.
The first thing that comes to mind is the quality of the craftsmanship: It is just rock-solid German work! But isn’t there something else under the hood? There sure is!
Johannes Pöhlmann has been building basses and experimented a lot over the years, which has brought him to the ‘True Tone’ concept. Since the Metropol J4 is honeycomb chambered and weighs just 3.8 kg, it must be considered a lightweight bass. But even though it is lightweight and chambered, it does not sound boxy or thin. It has a super strong core tone, a very fast response, and it allows you to sculpt the sound just the way you want.
The neck is made of a single piece of maple with Vincent’s own dual truss rod, which is rear-mounted with a skunk stripe. The fretboard is made out of katalox, which is a hard Mexican wood with some of the same qualities as ebony, only a little warmer. Actually, you can think of it as a mix between ebony and rosewood: Precise and fast, yet warm.
At 40 mm, the nut width is relatively wide and might seem too wide to some players, but the neck profile is flat, which means that you are closer to the strings, making 40 mm feel narrower than it really is. The zero fret with Vincent Bass Guitar’s own carbon-designed string retainer ensures that the sound of an open string is as close to the equivalent note played on the fretboard.
The single coil pickups are made by Häussel in Germany, which in my opinion is a perfect match, as the power and clarity of the Häussel pickups are amazing and simply boost the performance of the Akkurate, while staying very honest to the natural acoustic properties of the bass.