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When it comes to finding fresh tones that inspire new song ideas or put the sonic palettes of your heroes at your fingertips, there’s simply no substitute for slogging it out and putting tons of time into experimenting with different instruments, techniques, effects, and amps. We’re individuals with our own unique touch on the strings, a set of ears that’s heard things no one else has, and a guitar or bass rig that—due to our budget limitations, being finicky, or (hopefully) an insatiable longing for new tonal titillation—is never going to be exactly what we want. Let’s face it—we’re impossible to please. But if it feeds our muse, how can that be a bad thing?
Still, sometimes getting out of your own headspace and considering other players’ contexts can get the gears in your brain turning in ways that woodshedding can’t, even if that context sometimes comes from guitarists or bassists you don’t particularly dig or know much about. Hearing someone play a particular pedal and seeing how they use it—what their settings are, where they put it in their signal chain, and how they adjust their attack or their instrument’s onboard controls—can reveal a previously mundane-seeming device to be a corridor into mind-blowing sonic realms.
Every week, premierguitar.com features a new Rig Rundown video with the potential to do this for the tones you hear in your head. Even better, it may wedge a new, never-before-considered sound in your cranium and send you down new creative paths. Here we highlight 10 pro pedalboards from the hottest Rig Rundown videos in recent memory. The up-close and personal views of these artists’ stomp stations are bound to get your creative juices flowing, and once you’re done here we suggest clicking over to our site (or youtube.com/premierguitar) to take in the whole shebang—not to mention hundreds of other Rig Rundowns with the same mind-expanding potential.