Putting aside the financial acumen I'd need to afford such a wonderful thing, I aspire to being good enough to justify actually playing through one without feeling unworthy.

I'm trying. ;)

Nice video.


Silver Supporting Member
Love this series of amps in the zone. This is the best one yet. And I’ve heard a ton of trainwreck clips, played a few, played a ton of clones. this is better than all of them. My favorite I experienced in person was the Liverpool at the NJ amp show. Ultrasound brought a few out that day. I’ll have to look up what Liverpool that was


Awesome video Pete, and great playing as always! Perfect choice of cab/speakers and mics as well. I’m SO glad you played the rig up close all in the same room, as there is an entire world of expression available playing it ALL as an instrument.

I really wish IEMs, modelers, ISO cabs, etc. would all fall off the face of the earth in this new era of sound and recording we live in, alas that is a rant for another day…

Cheers for playing one of Ken’s creations that he would have been proud to hear like this! GK


Silver Supporting Member
This is not helping my Trainwreck GAS at all..........

I even have a open back 2X12 with a Scumback SC75 and S75-PVC in it, which seems to be fate, as Pete says:

"It would probably sound really, really great through some old maybe alnico Celestions, in an open back 2X12."
Exactly what I was thinking when he said that :cool:

Man, that feedback :eek:. Very cool. Thanks Pete.
Great work, @sinasl1. I haven't studied all the Trainwreck Circuits topologies, so I don't know how the Liverpool works, but for a certain kind of distortion, every ’Wreck I've ever heard has been a different shade of perfect. There are shades of Plexi in there (especially 50-watt), of a Deluxe Reverb at its exact sweet spot, of an AC30 with a treble booster hitting precisely the right frequencies, but it's not quite any of them, because it's not quite anything.

Those mid and upper-mid "crunch"/"roar" frequencies are gorgeous, like the exact right Fender/Marshall hybrid. Any kind of staccato Townshend/EVH chord-fragment playing has the sweetest sort of edge on it, good lord.


What a glorious sounding amplifier and wonderful video.

I'd love to play it with a big, hollowbody Gretsch like a 6120 or 6118.


Gold Supporting Member
Nothing better... I've been able to spend a few hours in a room with a bunch of Ken-built Trainwrecks alongside some John Mark-built amps. Yes, I know there are plenty of feelings on who can/should build these amps but please... that's not the point here.

The backstory is that Matt O'Ree wanted to go this route... he'd previously spent a lot of time with a Liverpool owned by his late friend and mentor, Bernie Brauseweiter. After Bernie passed, that Liverpool wound up with (and may still be owned by) Brad Paisley. So John brought 4 or 5 of his heads and a couple built by Ken, and a couple of other guys brought their Ken-built amps and a bunch of cabinets (on one occasion John brought Ken's G4 cab, the one Ken used in his shop to voice each amp). None of these guys were well-heeled collectors... they were players who'd all bought their amps when Ken was just that guy who built amps off of GSP Exit 132.

When it comes to gear, especially gear that has a lot of hype, I'm skeptical to the point of cynicism, but the amps that day did things I've never heard another amp do, including some well-built clones. And I do remember the Liverpool that Gene from Ultrasound brought to the NY Amp Show one year, and IMHO that one may have needed a tune-up as it was underwhelming compared to others I've heard. But at one point I was playing Matt's '61 Strat into an Express into that G4, idly but seriously thinking about whether I could sell everything I own to buy that guitar, that head and that cab.

EDIT: Credit Pete's playing on that video, too. You might think the gain on an Express or Liverpool make it a forgiving amp, but the opposite is true... you have to be a clean player because those things will expose every flaw.
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Platinum Supporting Member
I bought it from Ken in 1990. This was the second Trainwreck I got directly from Ken, the first being a similarly voiced Express. He made them for me to be more blues oriented but of course they all rock. I had three Liverpools, four Express amps and a Rocket.. Every one voiced quite differently and their own thing.. Chante had the new trannies, and I also owned Ken's personal old transformer Liverpool Jenny. Very bluesy and a little cleaner even than Chante. I had Calamity Jane, a very aggressive and more rock oriented Liverpool. Chante was a shared favorite Liverpool along with Jenny. Both very even sounding, clear harmonics. I regretted to have to sell my collection but retirement and finances forced me to the reality.. I played them lots and had wonderful sonic experiences. Like you said Pete, these amps made me play slower and dwell on harmonics etc., trying to milk the goodies out of every note. They almost play themselves that way, telling you what the next note is! Great demo Pete, this is off the charts good and showcases her so well..
Great story, thanks for sharing.


Silver Supporting Member

Not mine, on loan… I’ll be sorry to see it go!!! A fun piece of amp history…
Great video! I love how an amp like that sounds clean and dirty all at the same time. Like the clean is layered over the distortion. I talked to Ken Fisher a few times on the phone. I was on his waiting list but never got the chance to buy one. I remember in the 90’s Garrett Park guitars had an express and I asked to hear it. One of the guys there played it for me. Sounded glorious. It was $1800 and sold shortly after that if I am correct. I think Ken Fisher really like Old Celestion silvers, still my favorite speakers. He also thought the hot cake was the best drive for his amps.

Kurt L

It always looks like it’s a lot of fun being Pete Thorn! (Of course, it takes a lot of work to make things look so effortless!)

Guess I’ll spend some time today exploring the Liverpool models in my Axe-FX… :)


Don't know your budget, but you can get a new Trainwreck. (A friend just bought 2.) Obviously not built by Ken Fischer, but by John Mark who is the guy Ken's family has trusted to keep building them.
I was thinking in the realm of what most people would spend on a nice amp. So maybe the 1-3k range?


Silver Supporting Member
I know what you mean. I will be sorry to see this go. Kind of like Richard Fortus/Mick Mars Marshall, sounded unique and hard to replicate exactly
It's like an extension of your hand... if you play in a way that it feels like the note is going to scream, it screams, if you want to tuck it down, it tucks down. It's like having an extra dimension of control. Like a finger controlled synth filter.

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