Gibson Les Paul BFG
Gibson Les Paul BFG

Les Paul BFG, LP-Shaped Guitar from Gibson in the Les Paul series.

King Loudness 08/13/2011

Gibson Les Paul BFG : King Loudness's user review

« Great stripped down LP »

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The Gibson BFG was introduced by Gibson to bring a more affordable and bare bones guitar to the line of admittedly very flashy, classy and expensive Les Pauls. It has no binding, no inlays and an extremely rough cut maple top... no pristine flame maple here folks! It features a mahogany body and neck, the rough cut flamed maple top, a rosewood fretboard with 22 frets, Kluson tuners, tune-o-matic bridge and a unique pickup/electronics layout that combines a P90 in the neck position with a Gibson Burstbucker in the bridge. Each pickup has its own volume control, there is a master tone, and as well the guitar contains a kill switch. Pretty stripped down guitar, but the feel is still pure Les Paul all the way.


The BFG is a fairly medium weight guitar that sits on the body a little better than some of the heavier LPs, such as my Traditional Plus. The design of the Les Paul in general isn't what I'd call ergonomic at all, but this one seems MORE ergonomic then many of them. Not really a plus, but I mean if you're playing a Les Paul you should expect to feel that hog on your shoulder at all times. The upper fret access is not great but it's not horrible... you can get the high notes when it matters but it isn't going to be effortless.

Getting a good sound out of this guitar is not difficult. They have a pretty bare bones sort of sound... very raw and honest. The P90 does its thing, the humbucker does something else. It won't tell you what you want to hear... it'll tell you what you sound like. You can throw a bunch of effects on it to drown the guitar in wetness... but why would you want to?


I've tried this guitar through a few different rigs. It's a pretty simplistic guitar and sounds best through a similar amp. Single channel Fender, Dr. Z, even something like a Mesa Electra Dyne will work. The cleans are not pristine, but rather they have a really rough hewn quality to them that adds a little bit of natural breakup to the sound. The P90 gets some of those smokey jazz/blues tones and the humbucker will take you into the rock and funk arena.

Kicking in some overdrive yields a raw and vicious assault that echos the punk and grunge etho of loud, aggressive and ready to knock over anyone who gets in the way. The P90 howls with a sincere sustain that can only be achieved with the LP design and the humbucker just gives off a killer raunchy tone that drives any amp into oblivion with harmonic overtones and saturation. It's not a super high output sounding guitar but it has that certain something that works for the over the top vibe really well.


All in all I think the Gibson BFG is a cool guitar for anyone who wants a really stripped down and simple Les Paul that trades in class for a raw power that just embodies the very spirit of rock n' roll. They're now discontinued but you can still find them used for about $800 which isn't a bad deal. You aren't getting much in the features department, but the tone is more than enough to cover you. Try one out for sure.