What is it?
David Gilmourish drive tones have always been a touchstone for multitudes of guitarists but with Electro-Harmonix reissuing the 'Ram's Head' Big Muff fuzz pedal there has been a lot of attention on how to get that early '70s sound.
Well, if that is your bag then Yorkshire’s Green Carrot Pedals has you covered with a pedal that already gets bonus points for the wonderful pun. The Comfortably Plum is a clever two-circuit pedal that combines a 'Rams Head'-esque Muff circuit with an independently switched circuit based on the Colorsound Power Boost.
The Coloursound Power Boost was designed by Gary Hurst (ToneBenders et al) at the tail-end of the '60s and used by Gilmour from 1972 onwards. He would either play it on its own or combine it with the Muff – exactly what the Comfortably Plum is built to do.
Performance and verdict
Let's take at the Ram's Head circuit first. It delivers the smooth sustain and abundance of clarity and string-articulation that we'd expect from that Muff, and yet there is a Shape toggle switch that lets you boost the midrange (4dB or 10dB depending on where you set the tone) or alternatively scoop the mids as per the time-honoured Muff fashion. That's pretty cool.
• Electro-Harmonix Ram's Head Big Muff Pi
A classic Big Muff is back in stock and sounding just as good as it did back in the '70s.
The Coloursound Power Boost (which some readers in the States might know as the Overdriver) was one of the world's first overdrive pedals, and was pretty much a preamp with treble and bass controls, delivering a hefty kicker to the valve-amps of the period. This circuit has been augmented by the addition of a volume knob for adjusting the output level, and you can run this as a gentle clean boost, dialling in some hair as you go, right on through to some fuzzy crunch as the drive control is maxed out.
It is so responsive to your playing, and tweaking that treble knob can bring out a really up-front high-end to make your solos cut through.
Both channels offer a versatile experience used independently, but when combined you can get some really interesting tones. A trick Gilmour particularly enjoys is using the Power Boost to enhance the Muff's sustain and presence. Why not make that your jumping off point as you explore the pedal's different gain voicings and attempt those epic bends its inspiration was so famed for.
MusicRadar Verdict: Gilmour fans will be all over this but the broad sweep of drive, distortion and fuzz tones is enough to pique anyone's interest.
That Pedal Show
- ORIGIN: USA
- TYPE: Fuzz and Drive/ Boost pedal
- FEATURES: True bypass
- CONTROLS: Volume, Sustain, Tone, midrange shape switch, bypass footswitch, Treble, Bass, Drive, Volume, bypass footswitch
- CONNECTIONS: Standard input, standard output
- POWER: 9V DC adaptor (not supplied) 30mA
- DIMENSIONS: 130 (w) x 97 (d) x 53mm (h)
- CONTACT: Green Carrot Pedals