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Who are you, and what are you about?
My name is Steve Bello, and I was born at an early age. Been a guitar player for 38 years, turned professional in 1988, and have been a teacher for 21 years as well. I’ve had my own band, in various incarnations, since 2003, and recorded six albums to date. Right now, my line-up features bassist Jimmy Donegan and drummer Tommy Irwin. I released my sixth album back in December 2015 called LAYERS OF TIME, which can be streamed and purchased on stevebellorocks.com
So it’s been nearly 40 years since you picked up the guitar, do you remember what sparked your interest and made you do so?
I heard Led Zeppelin when I was four years old, thanks to my aunt, not that she was aware of it at the time. My grandfather was a jazz guitarist way back when, so while I liked that there was a guitar player in the house, I wanted to play heavy rock from the start. Grew up listening to Zep, Queen, Aerosmith, Kiss. Started learning guitar at age 9 but didn’t take it seriously until I saw Ritchie Blackmore on MTV smashing his guitar, and seeing videos of Jimi Hendrix lighting his Strat on fire. Both of those moments made me think “I have to play guitar for life!” I’ve never smashed or burned one…yet.
Having been a professional guitarist for nearly three decades I’m sure this is a tricky one, but is there any highlights that sticks out in your career?
Getting endorsed with Ibanez guitars back in 2003 was a major life-changer. I’ve had small victories along the way. Opening for Uli Roth at Starland Ballroom in 2012 was another biggie. And then when I played with TM Stevens and TC Tolliver in Germany in 2014, I saw that as a huge boost. Opened for King’s X recently at Stone Pony, so that’s another nice notch in my bedpost. 
What do you look for in an amp?
First of all, the tone has to hit me the right way. I don’t like futzing with too many knobs and controls, just want to get a good clean and solid rock sounds out of the box. There has to be versatility too. Having just one staple sound isn’t enough for me personally.
You’ve mentioned before that your daughter introduced you to Orange – clearly you raised her well – does music run in the family?
She unknowingly introduced me to Orange, let’s put it that way. She plugged an Ibanez guitar into a Rockerverb 50, and as soon as she hit that low E string, I said “Gimme that guitar!” Music does run in my family, for sure. Emma was a bass player but now she’s more focused on singing and studying music theory. My son Julian plays clarinet in high school band, and was fooling around on drums for a bit. 
Can you tell us about your relationship and experiences with Orange?
I’ve had nothing but amazing experiences and relationships with Orange since I started writing to Alex back in 2013. I got to meet him at NAMM 2014, and he introduced me to Cliff Cooper. I plugged into the CR120 head in the demo room and was sold. Ever since then, Alex has been prompt with returning my emails and helping me get the right gear in my hands. And he likes my cat Linus too.
What’s your dream set up?
I have all Ibanez guitars, main ones are my 7-strings, but I have some 6s for other gigs. For amps, I have the CR120 head into the PPC212OB cabinet. Also have a CR35RT combo as well as the CR20. And I had to get a Micro Terror because it’s just too damn cool! As for pedals, I have Morley, Digitech, Electro-Harmonix, Boss, Ibanez, and my signature Nuclear Paradise pedal designed by Checkered Pedals. Why all of this? Because it makes my legs look longer…oh and it sounds good too. I also stick to Von York strings, and my signature Spectraflex guitar cable called BelloFlex.
You also teach music, what would be your advice for people wanting to get into playing?
Find a good lawyer after you learn your first E chord. From there, learn as much as you can, as best as you can. You will have the one staple genre that moves you the most but it’s good to dance around other platforms. 
I’ve seen you’ve got quite a few shows lined up at the start of the year, how is the rest of 2017 looking? Are you working towards a new record?
Got a couple of shows lined up in 2017, working on getting more of course. I have 11 new songs written and demoed for my next album, so if all goes well, I will begin recording in the Summer of 2017 and release the album in the Winter.
Last words of wisdom?
Never cook bacon with your shirt off. 

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ALL ANALOGUE | INSPIRED FROM OUR ROCKERVERB Mk2 | FOUR STAGES OF GAIN

Solid State Never Sounded So Good

The Crush Pro Series marks our first foray into the realm of high powered, stage-ready solid state amplifiers. Taking its inspiration from the twin channel circuit in our prestigious Rockerverb series, the Crush Pro range has been developed using high grade solid state components. At Orange we have embraced this analogue technology and honed it to the point of perfection. The result is amplifiers that deliver the warm, rich tonal characteristics that have been our hallmark from the very beginning, coupled with extraordinary levels of versatility and construction to match.

For those who prefer a head and cab setup, the Crush Pro head 120 takes the same features and 120 Watt output stage as the Crush Pro 120 combo and puts it in a lightweight head format. A range of speaker cabinets can be connected via the two parallel speaker outputs (min. 8Ω load), but our personal favourites are our own CRPRO412 cab for its potent midrange or our PPC212OB for its unrivalled chime.

The Clean channel is a vintage-inspired design, with plenty of sparkle. As the volume control increases, the amp begins to break up into bluesy crunch at higher settings with musical, touch sensitive overdrive. The overall output volume can then be reduced to ‘bedroom levels’ with global master volume. The Dirty channel takes its roots from the Rockerverb, with four stages of gain covering a wide range of driven tones. Even at the limit, the Dirty channel remains tight and focused with sustain for days! Complete with professional details like a super transparent, fully buffered effects loop, footswitchable digital reverb (hall/spring/plate), and more than enough power for practically any venue, the Crush Pro 120 will always perform, wherever your music takes you.

ALL ANALOGUE SIGNAL PATH

Our commitment to analogue amplifier circuitry in a digital age ensures that the Crush Pro 120 head possess the lively feel and responsiveness that Orange is famous for, inspiring guitarists to play their instruments, not the technology.

TWIN CHANNEL, HIGH GAIN PREAMP DESIGN

Our high-gain preamp design puts a truly inspiring range of complex tones in the hands of the player. High quality, low noise components provide four stages of gain with exceptional richness and clarity. The result is amps that deliver everything from blissful cleans, to classic Bluesy Orange crunch all the way through to full-bodied, ultra high gain Metal distortion. Clean and Dirty channels can be switched on the amp’s top panel or remotely using the optional footswitch.

BUFFERED EFFECTS LOOP

For players who love their pedals, the Crush Pro 120 head has a fully buffered, low impedance loop allowing for any number of effects and cables to be patched between the amp’s input and output sections without sacrificing tone. Our attention to detail here means your pedal arsenal will perform to its absolute peak.

DIGITAL REVERB

With the option of Spring, Plate and Hall Settings, the reverb in the Crush Pro 120 head is an all-new digital module which adds a warm 3D spaciousness to your sound. Ranging from a subtle shimmer to lengthy ethereal trails, the circuit features an analogue ‘dry through’, ensuring your guitar’s tone maintains its integrity as the reverb is blended in.

YOU CAN RUN ONE OF THREE CAB CONFIGURATIONS ON THE CRUSH PRO 120 HEAD:

– One 16 ohm cab connected to the one of the speaker outputs.
– Two 16 ohm cabs connected to both speaker outputs, or daisy-chained together to one of the speaker outputs.
– One 8 ohm cab connected to one of the speaker outputs.
It’s better to not daisy-chain, in case the first cable or cab in the chain were to fail during a performance; then you’d lose all your sound. Running a separate cable to each cab insures at least one cab will still be going if a speaker cable or cab fails during a performance. Use the Orange FS2 to switch reverb on and off and change channels.

Features:Two-channel guitar amp head, Fully Buffered Effects Loop, Footswitchable Digital Reverb (Footswitch Sold Separately).
Controls (Right to Left):Clean Channel: volume, bass and treble.
Dirty Channel: volume, bass, middle, treble and gain.
Global: volume and reverb.
Finish Options:Orange or Black basketweave vinyl
Output Power:120 Watts RMS
Speaker Output Options:MINIMUM 8 OHM: 1 X 16 OHM, 2 X 16 OHM, 1 X 8 OHM
Unboxed Dimensions (W x H x D):(W) 55 X (H) 23 X (D) 25CM / 21.65 X 9.06 X 9.6”
Unboxed Weight:14.4KG / 31.75 LB

The Crush Pro sounds big and powerful in the room, with more than enough punch for stage use in typical pub and club gigging scenarios.

Be prepared to consign your negative preconceptions to the same scrapheap as the stiff and unmusical transistor amps of decades past; Orange has proven that there absolutely is a place for solid-state technology in today’s amp market, especially when it punches this far above its weight, sonically.

ALL ANALOGUE | VOICE OF THE WORLD SPEAKERS | ROCKERVERB VOICING

Solid State Never Sounded So Good

The Crush Pro Series marks our first foray into the realm of high powered, stage-ready solid state amplifiers. Taking its inspiration from the twin channel circuit in our prestigious Rockerverb series, the Crush Pro range has been developed using high grade solid state components. At Orange we have embraced this analogue technology and honed it to the point of perfection. The result is amplifiers that deliver the warm, rich tonal characteristics that have been our hallmark from the very beginning, coupled with extraordinary levels of versatility and construction to match.

The Clean channel is a vintage-inspired design, with plenty of sparkle. As the volume control increases, the amp begins to break up into bluesy crunch at higher settings with musical, touch sensitive overdrive. The overall output volume can then be reduced to ‘bedroom levels’ with global master volume. The Dirty channel takes its roots from the Rockerverb, with four stages of gain covering a wide range of driven tones. Even at the limit, the Dirty channel remains tight and focused with sustain for days!

Building on the platform of the CR60C, the larger CR120C combo takes the same preamp circuitry and couples it to a 120 Watt output section. The extra power yields even more clean headroom at high volumes, ideal for glassy arpeggiated chords. The bigger output stage and 2×12” speakers help to fill the room, making the CR120C a great partner for larger venues. Complete with professional details like a super transparent, fully buffered effects loop, footswitchable digital reverb (hall/spring/plate) and 18mm birch plywood construction, the CR120C will always perform, wherever your music takes you.

All Analogue Signal Path

Our commitment to analogue amplifier circuitry in a digital age ensures that the Crush Pro 60 combo possess the lively feel and responsiveness that Orange is famous for, inspiring guitarists to play their instruments, not the technology.

Twin Channel, High Gain Preamp Design

Our high gain preamp design puts a truly inspiring range of complex tones in the hands of the player. High quality, low noise components provide four stages of gain with exceptional richness and clarity. The result is amps that deliver everything from blissful cleans, to classic Bluesy Orange crunch all the way through to full-bodied, ultra high gain Metal distortion. Clean and Dirty channels can be switched on the amp’s top panel or remotely using the optional footswitch.

Buffered Effects Loop

For players who love their pedals, the Crush Pro 120’s fully buffered, low impedance loop allows for any number of effects and cables to be patched between the amp’s input and output sections without sacrificing tone. Our attention to detail here means your pedal arsenal will perform to its absolute peak.

Digital Reverb

With the option of Spring, Plate and Hall Setings, the reverb in the Crush Pro 60 combo is an all-new digital module which adds a warm 3D spaciousness to your sound. Ranging from a subtle shimmer to lengthy ethereal trails, the circuit features an analogue ‘dry through’, ensuring your guitar’s tone maintains its integrity as the reverb is blended in.

Voice of the World Speakers

Our own custom designed speakers deliver the perfect balance between modern low end punch and vintage highs, maintaining clarity even when pushed.

Classic Orange Styling

Finished in our legendary livery dating back to 1968, the Crush Pro 60 features our basket weave vinyl, woven speaker grille cloth, signature ‘picture frame’ edging and iconic hieroglyphs on the control panel.

You have to try one of these things. There is a sound for everyone.

FeaturesTwo-channel 2×12 guitar amp combo, Fully Buffered Effects Loop, Footswitchable Digital Reverb (Footswitch Sold Separately).
ControlsClean Channel: Volume, Bass and Treble. Dirty Channel: Volume, Bass, Middle, Treble and Gain. Global: Volume and Reverb.
Output Power (Heads and Combos)120 Watts RMS
Speakers (Combos and Cabinets)2 x 12”, 60 Watt, 8 Ohm Voice of the World
Extension Cabinet Options (Combos)1 x 16 Ohm
Unboxed Dimensions (W x H x D)66 x 51 x 30 CM (25.98 x 20.08 x 11.81″)
Unboxed Weight29 KG (63.93 lb)

It has the exact tone I was searching for for my deathcore band, my noise rock solo project and for jazz and blues. If it was ever stolen, well, read some Cannibal Corpse lyrics. These things would happen to the stealer.

I’m a tube-amp guy. Whether I’m playing bass or guitar, I prefer the warmth, dynamics and response that you get from tubes. That said, I have played through many modelling and solid state amps that claim to deliver “tube-like realism” that fall flat. This is absolutely not the case with this amp. The Clean channel sounds and behaves like you’d expect a great tube amp to, going from full, rich cleans to classic Orange overdrive, while the Dirty channel offers even more headroom for a delightfully versatile range of tones, all the way to ear-splitting distortion.

Really, the amp is so simple and easy to use that it’s rendered a longitude write-up kind of moot – I’ll cap this off by saying it’s an absolute steal if you’re ballin’ on a budget but want authentic Orange.