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9 Essential Boss Pedals

Blues Driver Style OverdriveBoostBoost and OverdriveBossBrown Sound DistortionChorus and VibratoDelayDelay WorkstationDigital DelayDigital ReverbDistortionDriveDual-DriveEQMarshall Style DistortionMetal DistortionModulationModulation WorkstationNoise GateOverdriveReverbReverb WorkstationUtility+-
2020GPX9EssentialBossPedals700.jpg

Of all the pedal brands I collect - I seem to have ended up with significantly more Boss than anything else - with currently 27 Boss Pedals all told. And while it’s not always the case that Boss has the most pedals represented in my active pedal-chain - it just so happens that right now my active Boss pedals number 7 - as follows per pedal-chain order:

  • SY-1 Synthesizer
  • BD-2 Blues Driver Keeley Freak Fuzz + Phat Mod
  • OD-200 Hybrid Overdrive
  • NS-2 Noise Suppressor Alchemy Audio Modded
...
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Post-NAMM Projected Pedal-Chain, 2020 Roadmap and Wishlist!

AnasoundsBig Muff Style FuzzBlues Driver Style OverdriveBoostBoost and OverdriveChase Bliss AudioChorus and VibratoDelayDelay WorkstationDigital DelayDigital ReverbDistortionDriveDual-DriveDumble Style OverdriveEarthQuaker DevicesFlangerFuzzFuzz Face Style FuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionGated and Velcro FuzzGFI SystemGlitchJackson AudioJHS PedalsKlone and Transparent OverdriveLooperMetal DistortionModulationModulation WorkstationMulti-DriveOCD Style OverdriveOctave FuzzOpAmp FuzzOverdriveRat Style FuzzRedbeard EffectsReverbReverb WorkstationSilicon FuzzSuper-Fuzz StyleThropyFXTone Bender Style FuzzTremoloTubescreamer Style OverdriveUtilityVS Audio+-
2020GPXSKSignalChainPostNAMM700.jpg

I’ve already largely decided what new pedals I will be targeting this year (that I know of!) - following on from the various reveals and announcements made over the last week, and other projects I’m aware of and various themes I will be pursuing in 2020.

 

First of all to explain the above visual - this features and extrapolation of my current pedal-chain - with the NAMM legend in front of various new / newish pedals - Green means already acquired - or at least already ...

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Best of New Guitar Pedals Released in and around the 2020 Winter NAMM Show

Alexander PedalsAnasoundsBeat MachineBig Muff Style FuzzBlues Driver Style OverdriveBoostBoost and OverdriveBrown Sound DistortionChase Bliss AudioChorus and VibratoDeath By AudioDedalo FXDelayDelay WorkstationDigital DelayDigital ReverbDistortionDriveDual-DriveDumble Style OverdriveEarthQuaker DevicesEnvelope Filter and Auto WahFeaturedFlangerFuzzFuzz Face Style FuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionGamechanger AudioGated and Velcro FuzzGFI SystemGlitchJackson AudioJHS PedalsKeeley EngineeringKlone and Transparent OverdriveLooperMarshall Style DistortionMetal DistortionModulationModulation WorkstationMulti-DriveMXROCD Style OverdriveOctave FuzzOddball FuzzOddball ModulationOpAmp FuzzOverdrivePhaserPitchPitch-ShiftingPlate ReverbPreAmpRack Style ReverbRainger FXRat Style FuzzRed Panda LabRedbeard EffectsReverbRotary SpeakerSilicon FuzzSinvertekSpacey ReverbSpring ReverbSuper-Fuzz StyleTape DelayThorpyFXTone Bender Style FuzzTremoloUni-Vibe and VibeUtilityVS AudioWalrus AudioWampler+-
2020GPXWinterNammHighlights700.jpg

So despite the perilous state of the world, the first NAMM of the new decade actually turned out to be pretty stellar. I had thought that last year’s exceptional show might end up as the all-time high water mark - but this one turned out just as many pleasant surprises.

 

Slightly different to last year there were a more significant number of pedals announced and launched in advance of the show - while a lot of pedals at the show had very little by way of collateral and some are ...

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Sinvertek Delivers the most amazing, most fully-featured amp-like Compact Drive/Distortion/PreAmp Pedal in the shape of the Drive N5 Plus

AmpsBoostBoost and OverdriveBrown Sound DistortionDistortionDriveMarshall Style DistortionMetal DistortionMulti-DriveOCD Style OverdriveOverdrivePreAmpSinvertek+-
2019GPXSinvertekDriveN5PlusMarkUp700.jpg

I’ve been a huge fan of the Sinvertek ’5’ series distortion pedals - owning all three in succession - the No.5 Distortion, the N5 Drive and now the N5 Drive Plus - in all its 7-knobs and 5-toggle-switches glory. This was actually my last pedal to arrive last year - in that it arrived just before Christmas. I had been chasing it since its June Summer NAMM announcement - but it wasn’t released until December of last year.

 

I’ve been patiently waiting for some...

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Menatone Unleashes the Vertical Fish Factory combination Red Snapper and Blue Collar Overdrive

BoostBoost and OverdriveDistortionDriveDual-DriveKlone and Transparent OverdriveMenatoneMulti-DriveOverdrive+-
2020GPXMentatonFishFactoryVertical700.jpg

I’m delighted that Brian Mena has finally seen fit to release a Vertical edition of his flagship Fish Factory Combination pedal - which brings together his two legendary overdrive - the Red Snapper and Blue Collar.

 

New in this version also is the series direction toggle-switch so you place each of the overdrives first in the sequence. I personally have never been a fan of the horizontal compact enclosure pedals - so beloved by Zvex Effects in particular - so I was always going to...

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Updates on the forthcoming Jackson Audio Pedals including the El Guapo Programmable Distortion + Overdrive, Golden Boy Programmable Overdrive + Boost and the Modular Fuzz + Octave

Big Muff Style FuzzBlues Driver Style OverdriveBoost and OverdriveBrown Sound DistortionDistortionDriveDual-DriveDumble Style OverdriveFuzzFuzz Face Style FuzzGated and Velcro FuzzJackson AudioMarshall Style DistortionMetal DistortionMulti-DriveOctave FuzzOpAmp FuzzOverdriveTone Bender Style FuzzTubescreamer Style Overdrive+-
2020GPXJacksonAudioElGuapo700.jpg

Contrary to my original analysis - all 3 pedals are actually pretty well rounded and ready to go - while Jackson Audio want to give each a chance to reach their intended audience - meaning a staggered release - with the first to be made available being Joey Landreth’s signature Golden Boy Overdrive ($299) - pre-orders will be up any day soon with shipping due to start in February. The pedal gets its name from a statue which sits atop the Manitoba Legislative Building in Joey’s home ...

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Jackson Audio Announces 3 innovative forthcoming pedals - The Modular Fuzz, Golden Boy Programmable Overdrive + Boost and El Guapo Programmable Distortion + Overdrive

Big Muff Style FuzzBlues Driver Style OverdriveBoostBoost and OverdriveDistortionDriveDual-DriveEffects Pedal MakersFuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionJackson AudioMarshall Style DistortionMetal DistortionMulti-DriveOctave FuzzOverdriveTone Bender Style FuzzTubescreamer Style Overdrive+-
2020GPXJacksonAudioGoldenFuzz700.jpg

I caught some early preview snaps of these on Instagram - and have been waiting for a while for better resources to appear yet to no avail. In the end I had to make my own composites from the best reference I could find online as it does not appear Jackson Audio will be releasing proper details during the show. I was able to do decent facsimiles of the Modular Fuzz and Golden Boy - and will do the El Guapo Distortion image/overview separately / additionally later - as and when better references...

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Magnetic Effects Announces Limited Edition Dual Drive Rat and Tube Screamer Combination Pedal

Boost and OverdriveDistortionDriveDual-DriveFuzzMagnetic EffectsRat Style FuzzTubescreamer Style Overdrive+-
2020GPXMagenticEffectsDualDrive700V2.jpg

Following on from my campaign for more dual-stacking drive pedals there seem to be quite a number appearing this year - including this smart combination of Rat and Tube Screamer - with standard Volume, Tone and Gain controls for each - which can be plaid independently and together.

Christian Livingstone explains it best:

 

"The TS style drive has been modded for asymmetrical clipping for more even order harmonics and a touch less compression. Along with a simple signal path for a touch ...

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2020GPXThorpyMarshallBunker700.jpg

Those of us who follow Adrian Thorpe have known about these two for a while, and that they are just the first two of a sort of Lovetone revival - where the full Lovetone range as it was will be reimagined and updated for this new age. Adrian and Dan have of course collaborated before - on the Fat General Compressor, Deep Oggin Chorus and Camoflange Flanger - and it looks like this will be a partnership that endures.

 

The mission was to modernise and improve on the original circuits ...

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2020GPXDanelectro3699FuzzNamm700.jpg

I was very quick to fall for the charms of the previous Danelectro Vintage Eisenhower Octave Fuzz (Super Fuzz), while it took me a touch longer to warm to The Breakdown (Univox UD50 Uni-Drive). Yet I did succumb to both in the end and I’m very happy with that eventuality.

 

This time around we get the 3699 Octave Fuzz (Foxx Tone Machine), Roebuck Distortion (Ibanez Mostortion MT-10) and sort of reissue of Danelectro’s own Back Talk Reverse Delay. I’ve pictured / listed ...

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