Earthquaker erupter

EarthQuaker take the less-is-more ap­proach with a fuzzy rev­o­lu­tion in tone to cre­ate an in­dis­pens­able pedal you never knew you needed

Guitarist - - Contents - Words Rod Brakes Pho­tog­ra­phy Neil God­win

This all-ana­logue sil­i­con tran­sis­tor fuzz pedal was in­spired by the Fuzz Face and the prob­lems and lim­i­ta­tions in­her­ent with that de­sign (not least the ne­ces­sity to al­ways ‘see’ the gui­tar’s pick­ups at the front of the sig­nal chain). In­volv­ing around two years of ex­per­i­men­ta­tion to find the perfect tone, com­pany founder, Jamie Still­man, even­tu­ally suc­ceeded in cre­at­ing “the perfect fuzz pedal”.

The in­flex­i­bil­ity of Fuzz Faces in terms of where they nor­mally need to be si­t­u­ated in the sig­nal chain has been neatly stepped around by in­tro­duc­ing a pickup sim­u­la­tion within the pedal’s cir­cuit. The Erupter al­ways ‘thinks’ it’s see­ing a pickup’s out­put, which opens up more cre­ative choices for gui­tarists (fuzzed flange, any­one?). The re­sult is a highly tuned and ex­tremely flex­i­ble lit­tle fuzz box. sounds Equally com­fort­able in front of or be­hind any num­ber of ped­als, a spe­cial buf­fer within the Erupter’s cir­cuit beefs up the sig­nal, which in turn en­ables it to be cleaned up ef­fec­tively on the fly. By us­ing the gui­tar’s vol­ume, rather than ad­just­ing the pedal it­self, a huge range of tones can be had at your fin­ger­tips, from com­pletely fuzzed-out

to crys­tal clear and ev­ery­thing in be­tween. The fuzz is un­mis­tak­able: an ar­che­typal clas­sic fuzz sound redo­lent of late 60s/early 70s psy­che­delic hard rock. Fuzz Faces are some­times dif­fi­cult when it comes to cut­ting through a band mix, but the Erupter man­ages this eas­ily without the higher-end fre­quen­cies sound­ing overly harsh and with dis­tinc­tion and clar­ity at the lower-end of the spec­trum, even when us­ing the pedal on full tilt.

Bias, be­ing the Erupter’s only con­trol knob, is more of the ‘sounds us­able ev­ery­where’ kind of bias, as op­posed to the ex­treme/gated type. It can be di­alled in cooler or hot­ter, with a cen­tre de­tent for the sweet spot (no doubt suit­able for most play­ers’ re­quire­ments).

ver­dicT Some may question if we re­ally need yet an­other Fuzz Face-style pedal on the mar­ket. How­ever, if you’re look­ing for one that sounds about as good as they get, with tons more cre­ative pos­si­bil­i­ties, then the an­swer is a re­sound­ing yes! Pros Strong def­i­ni­tion and clar­ity; dy­namic range of fuzz tones us­ing gui­tar vol­ume; use­ful any­where in the sig­nal chain; high-qual­ity build; small di­men­sions cons It is a mat­ter of taste!


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