The Original Fake ukulele is part of a limited range of 20 models being produced by
The Rebel. Although you might be able to argue that the KoAloha Naupaka has already dabbled in split tops/backs and creating hybrid sounds, even KoAloha can't claim to have taken experimentation to such an extreme, dedicated level.
Instruments with an almost patchwork effect aren't going to be to every players taste but if a massive textural range of sounds is the most important thing about playing Ukulele to you then you should definitely, definitely add this ukulele to your list of must-trys.
Outwardly, this uke is very similar to the Particle, a now discontinued model from The Rebel. Playing it, and listening to it intently through that soundport, you can hear very clearly that some tweaks have been implemented along the way; most noticeably a switch from a Spruce/Cedar hybrid top to Western Yellow Cedar and Western Red Cedar. The Particles sounded lovely with a huge, characterful sound, thankfully this model really does take a step forwards! Huge sustain, greater clarity, and real poke when you want it but with just a tiny bit less bite.
A new one on me is the choice of wood for the neck, which is Marrango, or Neem tree; it simply looks stunning, with the flaming and almost Lacewood like figuring.
The really cool thing about these is that they are made in pairs, with the woods reversed. So, this one is the mirror image of #1,which has the two woods transposed on the top, Padauk back, Ebony sides.
Top: Red Cedar + Yellow Cedar
Back: Ebony Side: Padauk Scale: 17-3/32” Fretboard: 18-Fret Neck: Marrango 37mm nut width Nut & Saddle: TUSQ Headplate: Ebony Headstock Rebel Logo: Brass Inlay Fretboard: Padauk + Ebony Bridge: Ebony Fret Stripe: Ebony Side Sound Port Binding front,back: Ebony Heel Cap: Padauk Tuners: Gotoh Planetary (4:1) Tuners (Gold+Black) Finish: High-Gloss