VIDEO: Introducing the Farmer's Mill by Crushsound, the 'sound engineer's nightmare'

Step on the switch, chaos ensues...
Step on the switch, chaos ensues...

True bypass, buffered bypass, noise gates, noiseless pickups, audiophile-grade cables... we guitarists invest a huge amount of time and money into eliminating unwanted extraneous noise from our signal chains. And yet we bring you news of a brand new pedal that's designed to introduce noise from "delicate vintage radio/vinyl dirt" right up to a "fully crushed and demolished sound."

Perhaps the idea sounds silly on paper, but whether it's Dave Davies slashing a speaker cone with a razorblade or Jack White soloing white knuckle into a heavily gated fuzztone, the history of rock 'n' roll guitar is peppered with moments when a primal racket has been exhilarating and nothing short of vital.

Premiered on 1 April but emphatically not an April Fool, the Crushsound Farmer's Mill is an analogue guitar stompbox that allows you to degrade and destroy your sound with control over key parameters. Here's some audio and the official word:

100% electric mud grinder

"Farmer's Mill is a stompbox guitar pedal. It has three control knobs and one footswitch. While you press the footswitch every single note you play starts burning and breaking.


"Located in the middle of 'The Mill' logo. It engages the Farmer's Mill. While you keep it pressed your sound is being burned, crushed and damaged.


"Allows you to specify the amount of the output wet signal. From delicate vintage dirt to fully crushed and demolished sound. Since all guitar players have their own tone Farmer's Mill stays transparent. It is a soundscape spice of your choice and you choose how to add it.


"Lets you choose the rate of the guitar signal breaking. It has nothing in common with the typical time signature as there is no such in chaos. You can have it slower or faster and believe us that this is the way it delivers the best.


"The heart of Farmer's Mill. There are four dedicated types of 'The Mill.' We have discovered that fluctuation of sound crushing can vary to your ears. One might choose to always step into the same electric mud while others might wish to be surprised every single time.

"First position of the knob brings you closer to the safe place while the following steps take you to the more and more chaotic distribution of the crush sound. The last position of 'The Mill' knob is a total unknown."

Interesting stuff. Stay tuned to MusicRadar as we'll be getting our hands on a unit and putting it through its paces very soon. In the meantime, visit Crushsound for more Farmer's Mill video and audio clips.

Chris Vinnicombe worked with us here on the MusicRadar team from the site's initial launch way back in 2007, and also contributed to Guitarist magazine as Features Editor until 2014, as well as Total Guitar magazine, amongst others. These days he can be found at Gibson Guitars, where he is editor-in-chief.