When the original Life Pedal (pictured in background above) was launched around 6 months ago I rather liked the concept of the pedal - which is really a kind of souped up Rat-style distortion with extra bells and whistles. Yet I somewhat balked at the size, format and price of the device at around $429. The Life Pedal was originally launched by Sunn O))) as a package deal with their latest -’Life Metal’ album and was part of a 1,000 unit limited run. Since then we’ve had a run on inverted colourway gold and black pedals - around 500 units I believe, followed by a run of 250 silver colourway editions.
Each time I saw one I thought ’Cool Concept’ but not for me really. The pedal just did not fit any of my practicality concerns in being over-sized and having the controls face away from the player - also the dual fooswitches seem to occupy a rather odd placement as far as I am concerned.
That EQD would do a more pedalboard-friendly vertical 1590BB style enclosure version just makes perfect sense - and this pedal is now on my imminent acquisition list - Andertons notes that it will be in stock in the UK this coming Monday. I’m guessing that because of the particular LM308 chip variety and by agreement with Sunn O))) that this pedal is in turn limited to 2,500 units - which because of EQD’s wide fanbase and distribution will still likely be snapped up very rapidly indeed. I hesitated on the Black Ash - much to my still ongoing regret - twice I’ve tried to acquire one such and it’s not worked out for me yet - hopefully 3rd time lucky on that score - while I’m not taking any chances on missing out on this particular Life Pedal - which is also much more reasonable priced - $269, which somewhat oddly has been translated to £289 here for the UK.
The proposition is really very simple for a Rat pedal fan like me and this will be a great addition to the collection. I noted previously that this is a souped up Rat-style circuit - with the LM308 OpAmp as its core noise-generator controlled by the typical 3 Rat controls everyone is familiar with - Magnitude (Volume), Filter (Treble-Cut) and Distortion (Gain). Then you have Amplitude (Octave Volume), Octave (Blend/Depth of Octave) and finally ’Clip’ - a 3-way clipping rotary selector with just the OpAmp (no diodes) applied to the left, Asymmetrical 2 x Silicon + 1 x LED diode in the middle, and dual silicon diodes to the right. The core Distortion side is activated by the left-hand Magnitude footswitch, and the Octave side by the right-hand Amplitude footswitch. EQD’s smart Flexi-Switch Technology allows you to apply both footswitches in Latching (quick press) and Momentary (hold press) for ultimate dynamic life playback.
There is really not much more to say - this is a fantastic Rat-like distortion with added boost, clipping and analog octave features - and all the demos sound stellar - I really expect these to go quickly.