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Glou-Glou Returns with the STEAK Multi-Band, Modulating, Oscillating, Multi-Mode Dual Voice Distortion Station

DistortionDriveDual-DriveEnvelope Filter and Auto WahFuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionGlou GlouMetal DistortionModulated FuzzModulationMulti-DriveOctaverOscillating FuzzPitchSilicon FuzzTremolo+-
2020GPXGlouGlouFXSteak700.jpg

The spiritual heir to Lovetone launches yet another monster big-box masterpiece. I’ve covered several of Glou Glou’s pedals on this blog - including the Rendez-Vous Dual Filter/Phaser in my piece on French Pedal Builders, and more recently the Fuzzy Quad Parallelized Resonant Filter and Moutarde Four Voice PLL Synth.

 

Glou-Glou really seems to specialise in applying multi-band filters and envelope followers onto any of the key effects types. These big boxes are really ...

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In Defence of the more Complex PreAmp Pedals

Blues Breaker Style OverdriveBlues Driver Style OverdriveBoostBoost and OverdriveBrown Sound DistortionBuild Your Own CloneBYOCCustom TonesDistortionDriveDual-DriveDumble Style OverdriveFuzzGermanium FuzzKlone and Transparent OverdriveMarshall Style DistortionMetal DistortionMulti-DriveOCD Style OverdriveOrigin EffectsOverdrivePreAmpSilicon FuzzSinvertekTubescreamer Style OverdriveVox Style Distortion+-
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I am somewhat exasperated to still be seeing several ill-informed nonsense critiques of these more fully featured pedals - where certain factions are denouncing them as sort of jacks-of-all-trade with insufficient core tonal qualities that mean they cannot hack it with just the basic 3 - Volume, Gain and Tone knobs!

 

I refer below to one of the classic Two Rock Amps - specifically the Silver Sterling Signature - which has 17 exceptionally useful controls - including those 6 mode toggle-...

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28 of the Best Compact Rat-Style Fuzz/Distortion Pedals - 2020 Ultimate Selection

Acid Age ElectronicsAion ElectronicsAnimals PedalBasic AudioBBE SoundBig Ear PedalsBig Tone Music BreweryBigToneMusicBreweryBYOCCatalinbreadChicago StompworkscmatmodsDistortionDr ScientistEarthbound AudioElectro-HarmonixFoxpedalFreakshow EffectsFuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionGreer AmpsIbanezJAM PedalsJHS PedalsJohn LandgraffMagnetic EffectsMojo Hand FXOpAmp FuzzPettyjohn ElectronicsRat Style FuzzReuss EffectsStomp Under FootThorpyFXVFE PedalsWalrus Audio+-
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Most should know by now that I’m a huge Rat aficionado - and for me Rat doesn’t just mean those original ProCo Rat varieties but all the different derivatives - direct and indirect - old and new, classics, rarities and outliers. This category is titled ’Rat-Style’ so there’s a few Rat-adjacent pedals here too which share some of the core fundamentals and bring to mind some key associations with that well-known highly textured frequency profile.

 

For me at a...

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End of June Pedal-Chain Update - Episode V - A Disturbance in the Force!

Ambient EffectsAnasoundsBig Muff Style FuzzBixonicBlues Breaker Style OverdriveBoostBoost and OverdriveBuffalo FXChase Bliss AudioChorus and VibratoCooper FXDigital ReverbDistortionDr ScientistDriveEarthQuaker DevicesElectro-HarmonixEnvelope Filter and Auto WahFlangerFuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionGFI SystemGlitchGranular DelayJackson AudioKlone and Transparent OverdriveKuro Custom AudioMarshall Style DistortionMenatoneModulationModulation WorkstationOctave FuzzOpAmp FuzzOverdrivePlate ReverbPreAmpRack Style ReverbRat Style FuzzRedbeard EffectsReuss EffectsReverbReverb WorkstationShimmer ReverbSilicon FuzzSpaceman EffectsSpacey ReverbSuper-Fuzz StyleThorpyFXTremoloTubescreamer Style OverdriveVox Style DistortionVS Audio+-
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June hasn’t been a particularly kind month to me - in fact it’s been something of a difficult period - I was going to call this piece ’The Darkness Lingers’ but didn’t really want that particular NLP on this blog - which I try to keep as positive as is practically possible.

 

A number of ventures and collaborations I was working on this month came a cropper when the other collaborating parties somewhat inexplicably and suddenly ended their involvement - ...

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Mikey Demus's Pedalboard Dynamics and Essential Tone Components

BoostBoost and OverdriveBossBrown Sound DistortionCaroline Guitar CompanyDelayDigital DelayDigiTechDistortionDouble TrackingDown-TunerDriveDunlop EffectsEchoverbFuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionHarmonizerKlone and Transparent OverdriveLo-Fi DelayLoop-SwitcherMetal DistortionMikey DemusMXRNoise GateOctave FuzzOctaverOpAmp FuzzOverdrivePitchPitch-ShiftingRedbeard EffectsStrymonTape DelayThorpyFXToneQuestTunersUtilityWah and Fixed Wah+-
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Readers of this blog should be well aware by now of Skindred’s Lead Guitarist and Redbeard Effects Head Honcho Mikey Demus. And while I had been very familiar with his band Skindred for a number of years - my focus didn’t shift fully to Mikey himself until he got into partnership with Adrian Thorpe and started producing his own range of signature pedals.

 

The first release was an exceptional take on Mikey’s core signature Orange Rockerverb 100 Amp sound - the Red Mist ...

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9 of the Best Dr Scientist Pedals

Ambient EffectsBig Muff Style FuzzBitcrushing and Lo-FiBoostBoost and OverdriveChorus and VibratoDelayDigital DelayDigital ReverbDistortionDr ScientistDriveEffects Pedal MakersEnvelope Filter and Auto WahFuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionGlitchModulated FuzzModulationModulation WorkstationMulti-DriveOpAmp FuzzOverdrivePhaserPlate ReverbRack Style ReverbRat Style FuzzReverb WorkstationRing ModulationShimmer ReverbSpacey ReverbSpring ReverbTremolo+-
2020GPX9BestDrScientistPedals700V2.jpg

I’ve been a fan of Ryan and Tanya Clarke for the longest time, and currently have 4 of their best in my collection, with a couple more on the wishlist. My first and to-date all-time favourite Dr Scientist pedal is the exceptional Frazz Dazzler 2-Channel Fuzz - which while wholly unique, most equate with a Muff style of fuzz, yet for me it’s more of an extended range / high-gain Rat.

 

So the Frazz Dazzler was my first, then came the BitQuest and next my Gold Bar Edition The ...

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JHS Cheese Ball Fuzz vs ThorpyFX Field Marshal Fuzz

FuzzGated and Velcro FuzzJHS PedalsSilicon FuzzThorpyFX+-
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This story obviously starts off back in the late 90’s with Lovetone’s original Big Cheese Fuzz - which was a highly distinctively voiced 4-mode silicon transistor fuzz circuit in a somewhat over-sized enclosure by my measure. Those fuzzes variously utilised either 3 x BC549 or 3 x 2N3904 transistors. For a variety of reasons they were only available for a handful of years and more recently became very sought-after on the second-hand market - where examples were fetching in the ...

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Analog Music Company & Noise Space Audio Deliver the Ultimate Live Breadboarding Experience with their Ultra-Modded DS-1 Evil Pumpkin Experimental Glitchy Oscillating Drive-Distortion-Fuzz-Synth

Analog Music CompanyBitcrushing and Lo-FiBoost and OverdriveBossDistortionDriveFuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionGlitchGuitar Gear Improvements and PrototypesGuitar Synth and SequencerModulationNoise Space AudioOverdriveTremolo+-
2020GPXBossDS1EvilPumkin700V2.jpg

I’ve been following this pedal’s development since it first emerged - now pictured in its second iteration with more evenly spaced toggle-switches around its perimeter. In short each of those 12 x 3-way switches is neutral / off in its middle position - while left/right or up/down gives you different pathways through the circuit which often impacts multiple circuit elements and component values simultaneously. In some ways this is something of a chaos-engine with around 500K ...

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End of May Pedal-Chain Update - Episode IV - A New Hope!

Ambient EffectsAnasoundsBig Muff Style FuzzBitcrushing and Lo-FiBlues Breaker Style OverdriveBoostBoost and OverdriveBrown Sound DistortionChase Bliss AudioChorus and VibratoCooper FXDigital ReverbDistortionDr ScientistDriveEarthQuaker DevicesElectro-HarmonixEnvelope Filter and Auto WahFlangerFuzzFuzz Face Style FuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionGFI SystemGlitchJackson AudioKlone and Transparent OverdriveKuro Custom AudioMarshall Style DistortionMenatoneMetal DistortionMI EffectsModulationModulation WorkstationMulti-DriveOctave FuzzOddball ModulationOverdrivePhaserRat Style FuzzRedbeard EffectsReverbReverb WorkstationSilicon FuzzSpacey ReverbSuper-Fuzz StyleThorpyFXToneQuestTremoloVox Style DistortionVS Audio+-
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May was the month that several things finally slotted into place - all my missing / presumed lost USA orders finally landed as did a few other pedals which had been somewhat lingering in the wild - so May delivered a pretty decent pedal yield overall in the end. I also got to be involved in a couple of exciting up-and-coming brands - Kuro Custom Audio of Italy and MidValleyFX of USA. I’ve already published a feature on the excellent Kuro Akuma Fiery Fuzz as featured on slot #5, and hope ...

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Best of Steve Williams Compact Edition Pigdog Pedals

BoostBoost and OverdriveEffects Pedal MakersFuzzFuzz Face Style FuzzGermanium FuzzPigDog PedalsTone Bender Style Fuzz+-
2020GPXCompactPigdogPedals700V2.jpg

It is well known by now that I’m a considerable fan of fuzz, but I do have hangups about impractical over-sized and unergonomically formatted pedals. This means I really don’t have an affinity for any of those original Tone Bender enclosures and the like - which are pretty much as long and as practical as frogman’s flippers for footwear. When fuzz pedals first emerged they were the very first effects pedals taken into use - and players only ever had a few effects pedals on ...

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