Article by Jaime Page
Music stores have long been an integral component in the fabric that nourishes a musical community, but in recent times that symbiotic relationship has been tested with the growth of the internet and social media.
It takes a lot of guts for a store owner to plough their hard-earned cash into creating an exciting, well-stocked superstore, employing and training local musicians, investing time and effort into building your community and all the while hoping to make a living, or at least remain reasonably sane in the process.
It was with these thoughts in mind that I was rather keen to see how Mega Music was handling the new retail reality, as well as to check out the deals!
A Sudden Attack of G.A.S…
As a guitar player, you get to love the feeling a sudden attack of G.A.S. (Gear Acquisition Syndrome for the uninitiated) coming on.
You positively bristle at the thought of a killer bargain (at least that is what you tell your partner) and head out to hunt down that must-have new weapon to add to your burgeoning sonic arsenal.
And so, with symptomatic G.A.S. breaking out I made my way down to Mega Music in Myaree.
The first challenge at many stores is parking, and I thought that it would be a cinch, but I had not reckoned on how busy the store was on the day. That piqued my attention straight away. Lots of people here, there is…
On entering the store my first impression was of the bright, positive energy that exuded in spades. It was also a pleasant surprise to see the place teeming with customers, and it was immediately apparent that this establishment was kicking some serious butt.
Though it was busy it did not stop Jarrod from the guitar department beaming a mighty welcoming smile that pretty much summed up the whole experience.
Ah, friendly staff, certainly a bonus in this age of vacant ‘too busy to be bothered with you’ apathy.
Ooh, It’s A Killer Machine…
Guitars, (sigh…) where do you start? There are so many, and they are all damned fine. This guitar department is designed to lure the serious player, but with a very strong accent also on beginners and everything in between. There are no holes in their range at all!
In terms of the big brands, most major players were on hand, with luscious offerings by Paul Reed Smith, Gibson and Fender, with the Custom Shop models particularly tempting. Standout axes include a Gibson Les Paul 60th Anniversary ’59 Reissue, a gorgeous Gibson Les Paul ’56 Goldtop, a Fender Custom Shop Stratocaster ‘Hank-style’ in Fiesta Red with gold hardware and two gorgeous PRS guitars.
For those looking for something more alternative, you might choose from a mountain of Gretsch, Danelectro, Epiphone, Music Man and a fair smattering of pointy Ibanez and Jackson guitars for the more brutal among us.
Guitar Amps: Is 11 Seriously Loud Enough?
Well, that might be up for debate, but the occupants of the amp room would likely agree. Cranking a quality tube-powered amp is rather fun, especially if it is a Marshall or (insert your fave brand here) stack. You will find plenty of amps that will raze the neighbourhood and make the front-of-house guy truly hate you.
For the more sensible guitarist, there is a fine selection of the legendary Fender amplifiers, as well as a plethora of choices from beginner to intermediate. Spoil yourself with brands including Orange, Line 6, Roland, Boss, Vox and more.
Total FX: Line ‘Em Up!
So, you think choosing a guitar and amp was easy? Try handpicking your guitar effects pedals. The tone sculpting options at Mega are endless and no doubt, many of you will make a valiant attempt to try them all.
You could write off a complete day testing said pedals, so be sure to bring in enough killer riffs and licks to go the distance, and, of course, avoid the obligatory Stairway To Heaven, if only for the safety and comfort of those nearby.
You will find the classic Boss pedals alongside a massive array of way too many brands to list (time is short). To get more of an idea check their website.
The deals on offer are pretty awesome, and there seems to be an endless supply of kit up for grabs…GUITAR TRAGIC
How Many Gibson Acoustics Was That Again?
Acoustic guitars are a big thing these days, and Mega has more than enough to drive you mad. It was a pleasant surprise to see a wall full of Gibson acoustics (wouldn’t you just love a J200?) hanging agonisingly near the splendid Martin wall, next to the ever-popular Taylor, Maton and Cole Clark! No doubt you get the picture and apologies to many great brands not listed here. The selection is quite spectacular.
It was not all about high-end guitars though, with a good selection of Yamaha, Ibanez, Fender, Sigma and more for those looking for something that you won’t have to sell your soul for.
Let There Be (Even More) Drums
Anyway, after fending off multiple 6-string enticements, including the biggest range of Fender guitars I have seen since NAMM, I made a beeline upstairs to say hi to young Dazza to check out the fabled drum department.
Our hero sat perched on the heavenly firmaments beaming down on us from above. Ok, so I exaggerate, he was just sitting there on Facebook.
Anyway, people like Darren are the reason music stores exist and it is no wonder they are totally thriving here.
The Mega Music drum department is beautifully presented and features just about every classic brand imaginable (Ludwig, oh yes!) it is a credit to Darren and his partner in crime Zed. If one was a drummer this would be the place. Ripper deals were in abundance, with a HUGE accessory and cymbal range priced to thrill. Probably the best drum offering in the country. Great guys and incredible gear and no wonder it was so very busy.
Recording Your Next Hit And Other Related Items
There is more to a great musician than simply playing an instrument, (and as awesomely as you do). These days it is essential to have access to recording gear, and Mega must have an innate understanding of what you need, with all the right components to get into recording at a sensible level. Again, pricing was fierce and stock on hand plentiful.
Additionally, there were plenty of choices when it came to keyboards, with quite a few bargain synths to be had, and some hardcore digital piano offerings from Roland, Yamaha and Casio that could work very well if your dream is to become the next Reg Dwight. You gotta start somewhere, hey?
Wired For Even More Sound?
A considerable effort has been invested in the Mega quest to build the premier live sound destination south of the river. A great store needs great people and PA department manager Craig Tucker is the man to see when it comes to sound systems for your band, school, church or even just hacking away in the comfort of your own garage. All the usual big name brands are in there, and there is no shortage of great deals.
From what I could see it looks like there must a massive expansion going on. Perhaps Santa might bring them another floor to grow into. First world problems perhaps, but hey, exciting times.
As mentioned above, music stores provide more than just gear and mega Music have made great strides in building the musical community around which we all co-exist. That includes a fully-fledged music academy in-house.
Their recent efforts include sponsorship or donations to:
- Melville School Song Lab
- WAMCON – Award Sponsor (Best Drummer)
- Rehoboth Christian College Quiz Night
- La Salle College Music Night
- Peel Music Hub/Fairbridge Studio (2 Year SPONSORSHIP Deal)
- Perth College Music Friends
- Harmony Primary School Community Fair
- Pink Ribbon Fundraiser
- One Big Voice Festival (RAC Arena)
- Richmond Street Records Fundraiser
You can also be sure that this is only the tip of the iceberg and that a myriad of ‘little things people do that make a big difference’ emanate wildly from this brilliant music store.
In Summing Up Before Racing Off To Buy Coffee
It is plain to see that the brains trust at Mega has their finger on the pulse and that this is a store built to move positively forward, and there can be only greater things to come.
It was obvious that a lot of thought had gone into the selections on hand in all departments, making it a one-stop experience that means you have a good reason to walk away empty-handed. If you want it, they’ve probably got it.
I can honestly say that I was taken aback by the Mega experience, very impressed with the deals on offer and that it was well worth the drive. As the old saying goes, do yourself a favour and get down there!
Sale on in both stores.
MEGA MUSIC MYAREE
95 North Lake Rd
Ph 08 9330 2777
MEGA MUSIC WANGARA
5/32 Prindiville Drive
(08) 9408 1236
Bright, creative, positive, exciting, fresh, energetic, well-stocked, easy to find, easy to park, music lessons on site, going somewhere fast!