My memory is a little foggy, but I believe that I first listened to Smashing Pumpkins back in 1991, but honestly I feel it may have been in 1990, but that really doesn’t mean anything. What I do remember, is listening to Siva off of Gish. At that time, I was just learning to play guitar. I had a Yamaha RGZ guitar and crappy Crate G-40 amp. I was just learning about distortion, very limited control, but was having fun playing with my friends. When I listened to Siva I was absolutely blown away by the dynamics. I had never heard anything like that before, the now-classic loud/quiet/loud algorithm of the 90s. I can think of countless hours of listening to Gish, and it is definitely one of my “foundation” albums that would be included in my life soundtrack. That sounds dorky, but I often think of periods of my life and associate those times with very monumental albums of the time – and Gish is definitely up there.
I of course continued to listen to their follow up Siamese Dream, but the immense popularity of the band started push me away. This is an incredible annoying bad habit I have. Sometimes when bands get too mainstream, it annoys me. This is no fault of the band, or the music, but my own hangups. I honestly think I’ve grown out of that now, but back in the mid-90s, that would often happen to me. I think, I need to rediscover Smashing Pumpkins again and listen to the stuff I arrogantly passed and catch back up. Of course, I’ll have to throw some Gish back in my listening library… just for good measure.
I’ve always kept a 3rd eye on Billy Corgan throughout the years after. I’ve always admired his playing, his tone and his song writing. So, I was incredibly excited to see Premiere Guitars’ Rig Rundown on Billy Corgan’s gear.If you aren’t following Premiere Guitar’s YouTube Channel, I highly recommend it.
Immediately in the interview, I was very interested in what he is using for amps. He’s using Salvation Mods to create small compact pre-amp modules to model is classic amps. I didn’t realize how many styles/types of amps he’s used in his career (showing 8 modules), but it makes sense, and a system like this is perfect for him! I hadn’t heard of Salvation Mods before, this is a great “new” product to look at.
Here is a shot of Billy’s pedal board. Back in August I posted Billy’s rack, which is incorrect. I’m very glad that Billy took the time with Premiere Guitar to do this rig run down! I was very surprised to see how trim the pedal selection is, and how much he is relying on the amp tones.
Here is the breakdown of pedals:
MXR Phase 90 x2
Keeley True Bypass Loopers x3
GTC Super 72 “Bloody Finger”
Chicago Iron Octavian
Boss PH-3 Phase Shifter
Strymon El Capistan
Strymon Favorite Switch
MXR Custom Audio Electronics MC403 Power System
Rocktron All Access Controller
Were you a fan of the Pumpkins back in the day or today? Let me know by commenting below!!! Also, if you’ve used Salvation Mods, I would love to hear what you think about them!