We’ve come a long way in the wah world. For a long time, vintage wahs did one thing. And if you don’t like that one thing you were pretty much out of luck (apart from collecting every known variety, which many of us did anyway). And while wah makers have come a long way in making them more tweakable—especially in the last 15 years or so—the T-Rex Gull is impressively versatile. This do-it-all wah machine gives you the power to alter the tone, sweep style, range and boost to suit a multitude of musical situations.
Ready to Fly
The pedal's design is inspired by the vintage Mercedes 300SL Gull Wing car, and the matte grey bronze/nickel casing with a red rubber foot traction pad makes for a handsome looking pedal that looks classic and ready for business. Aside from the typical input/output/power supply T-Rex kindly positioned a 9V battery compartment on the back that can be accessed with a flip of your thumbnail. No more taking the bottom of the pedal off, thank you! The section in front of the pedal itself has a Boost pot, a three-way toggle for voicing (Wah 1, Wah 2, Yoy Yoy) and a Slope knob. On the front of the pedal next to the output jack is a Move Hotspot button that changes the action of the foot pedal. The Gull has no wah potentiometer, instead, the treadle is equipped with a magnet.
I checked out the Gull with a classic combination of Les Paul, Stratocaster, and Marshall Superlead as well as a more modern setup of a Stiff Amplification DirtHead and Mills Acoustics 4x12 loaded with Eminence Swamp Thangs and Texas Heats. In Wah 1 mode with the boost and sweep turned down you’ll get a classic, thinner but cutting sound, which makes the wah effect more pronounced, though at the expense of a little fullness. Bringing the Sweep up to noon thickened up the tone considerably, though the highest setting brought about a brash and papery quality to the wah that would probably be ideal for cutting through a funk track.
The Wah 2 setting is distinctly grainier, and with a Les Paul the Gull copped some classic vintage wah tones. Kicking on the Boost helped goose the front end of the amp and get a nice volume kick for solos, which sounded much more Clapton-with-Cry Baby that the cleaner settings on Wah 1. The thicker qualities of the Stiff Dirthead helped tame some of the brightness of the Gull, and in general the Gull seemed to prefer the higher gain environs of the Dirthead over the more biting and mid-centric Superlead.
The Yoy setting adds another tone dimension through use of a dual filter. And with the Dirthead in high gain mode and my Les Paul I got super-muscular, Zakk Wylde-style tones with ease. In the end I found myself hanging out in the Yoy setting the most and really enjoying (or should I say en-yoy-ing) the full-throated and vowel-y qualities of the setting.
The only real shortcoming I could identify in the Gull’s performance is that the first half of the sweep on the foot pedal produced little-to-no audible change in tone—even with adjustments to the Hotspot control. The wah filter only really kicks in past the halfway point. And the reduced range sometimes found me struggling to precisely control the sweep because little movements can translate to major shifts in tone.
The Gull offers a lot of flexibility and options for the wah fanatic. It has a truly unique voice that’s still rooted in the classic Cry Baby vein, but adds a great boost and voicing control that can help you reshape things significantly. Some players might find it a tad bright, and the pedal travel often seems short. But with the right amp and settings this Gull is a killer waiting to take flight.
you want a wah with a lot of tone-shaping options.
a classic tone is all you need.