Free The Tone Heat Blaster
Forget mid-scooped fizz or too much compression because here we have a JRC072D op-amp in conjunction with clipping LEDs (most pedals use diodes) to return high-headroom, rocking bite and crunch.
Hi- and low-cut switches attenuate presence and rein in resonance respectively, meaning you can go from rifftastically riotous biting cut through to fat and swampy thump. A proper distortion that will appeal to overdrive lovers.
Lovepedal Hermida Audio Dover Drive
Do you like the way Billy Gibbons, Eric Johnson and David Gilmour’s thick distortion sounds are a bit fuzzy, too?
Then you’ll like this because it’s designed loosely around the sound of a fuzz and a BK Butler/Chandler Tube Driver into a cranked amp, with a handy internal bias control to affect the ‘spittyness’ of the fuzz. Not overdrive, not fuzz, not distortion: all of them!
BUY: Lovepedal Hermida Audio Dover Drive currently available from:
UK: Andertons Music
Wampler Triple Wreck
This unashamedly high-gain distortion has a tremendous amount of gain and low-end response, not to mention an extremely powerful EQ section to take you from dark and thuddy to the most mean-sounding, aggressive slam.
There’s a vintage/ modern switch for more classic hard rock or modern metal responses respectively, plus an additional boost with its own contour control. Plug in and wail.
Mesa/Boogie Throttle Box EQ
Like the non-EQ version, this draws on Mesa’s genre-changing knowledge of gain and distortion, but with footswitchable control over the hi/lo modes, additional boost, mid cut and the trademark five-band graphic EQ.
It’s superb for metal, but also highly adept with all kinds of rock and high- octane blues, turning your humdrum amp into something much more exciting. Massive riffs and singing solos are all here.
Woo! ‘Adaptive distortion’ means the response of this pedal’s gain changes with your playing dynamics, opening up a whole extra range of textures.
The general sound of the DS-1X is in the hard rock and metal camp (try the OD-1X if you’re more into rocky blues), and with a very solid low-end response it suits down-tuned guitars particularly well. A world away from old-school.
MXR Super Badass Distortion
This distortion box is worth it for the name alone. The Super Badass can deliver edgy, mid-rich 70s-type breakup right through to smoother, more modern saturation and sustain.
No fancy switches, no alternative modes, just a straight-up, affordable rock machine from one of the top names in the business. It has masses of level, masses of gain and a super- powerful EQ to boot. Bites or sings: your choice.