Today’s Pedal Line Friday submission is from Todd Luschen. If you have a pedal line (doesn’t have to be in a board) for your rig, please email me a photo, bio, description of pedals and routing to firstname.lastname@example.org. Every Friday I’ll showcase a pedal line submission. Make sure you include any links to your band or music page.
Pedal Line Friday – 5/5 – Todd Luschen
Todd Luschen. I’ve been playing off and on for over 20 years at this point. Started getting into effects probably 6 years ago. As my paychecks grew, so did the assortment.
Dunlop Joe Bonamassa Mini Fuzz Face: I have been sold on the sound of this pedal’s circuit since Andy demo’d it on ProGuitarShopDemos on Youtube. Big plus that it’s the “mini” size, with LED light and takes BOSS-type power source. Gets great, woolly fuzz face sounds at full guitar volume, and various levels of overdrive at less-than-full-volume. I have a Gibson Faded Flying V with the 498R and 500T pups…it handles those without turning to mush. Very versatile dirt, but doesn’t get any of the crazy sounds of other fuzz pedals. Sounds overly bright and harsh if not first in the pedal chain. I’ve tried putting a true bypass pedal in front of it, but it ain’t havin’ it.
ZVex Fuzz Factory (Vexter Series): I was getting envious of the crazy fuzz sounds in these Youtube videos, so I grabbed one. Lots of crazy sounds, and many good distortion/fuzz settings. Very bright and seems to suck a lot of bass out of the tone. I was this close to getting rid of it, until I spent the TIME to mess around with it. Exactly the opposite of the Fuzz Face’s plug n’ play nature. Will experiment with putting it in a true bypass looper (along with the fuzz face) to get it closer to the guitar’s pickups, load-wise.
BOSS CS-3 Compression/Sustainer: The first pedal I got on this current board(s). Noisy, I used to use it for extreme feedback/squealing. But, since I love dynamics, I don’t use it much for compression anymore. It now mostly serves as a buffer to feed the channel split (in “bypass” mode).
Radial Big Shot ABY: Originally, I bought this as a “channel selector” for my Fender ’65 Deluxe Reverb Reissue. Due to the buffer in the CS-3, there is no volume/tone drop when using both channels. I use more of the “Y” aspect of the pedal. The above chain is the input, and goes directly from the “Output A” to the “Vibrato” channel on the amp. I set that channel’s volume one more than the normal channel. This constitutes the “all analog”, boosted channel. Output B goes through the pedal’s isolation transformer, and gets the 180 degree phase shift (to overcome the DRRI’s two channel’s being out of phase with each other) to feed…
Electro Harmonix POG 2: I use this in several modes: sub octave for nasty synth-style leads, octave/two octave up with heavy attack delay for very convincing B-3/organ backing sounds. This is the most expensive pedal I’ve bought, but it’s worth it for how much I use it.
Digitech RP500: Mostly modulation and volume pedal effects. Very rarely do I use the wah on it. It’s always on, and always bypasses the amp/cab simulations. It does all of the modulation stuff well, and the sound editing interface for the computer makes it very quick and easy to design what patches you want. Currently, I have 5: 1) Bias-style tremolo where expression pedal controls tremolo speed, 2) Leslie-style rotating speaker, where pedal controls rotor speed (it even ramps up and down when using the expression pedal…very realistic), 3) Straight volume patch where expression pedal controls volume…with switchable wah, 4) Whammy octave up, where expression pedal controls pitch shift, 5) bass-cut eq, with envelope filter. A good friend gave me this unit, but they are cheap to find online.
TC Electronic Flashback Triple Delay: Bought this when they first came out, and were $250. What a bargain. 3 independent delay presets, switchable between serial or parallel. I have one setup as an eighth note digital, one as dotted eighth analog modulated, and one reverse dotted quarter. Depending on what I do, I usually only change the serial/parallel switch. No other pedal that I’ve researched has this much configuration flexibility.
Electro Harmonix Cathedral Reverb: The first “serious” pedal I ever bought. Plate mode is so incredible — it can hide how “digital” this side of the board sounds. Makes the POG2 a different pedal. Grail mode is the other I use quite often, for your basic reverb. Infinite sustain sealed the deal for me, but I don’t use it enough to warrant having to pay any extra for it.
The all-digital side (the RP500 does not have an analog pass through…entire signal is digitized) goes to the “Normal” channel on amp. That way, I can have one channel that has tremolo, and one that doesn’t. I can “fade in” effected sounds, while playing primarily through the “analog side.”
This routing scheme can be used with all black face Fender units. It’s the poor man’s parallel effects loop. Have fun out there!