Magnatone Giveawya

September 2014
more... GearEffectsReviewsSound SamplesChorusDelayEchoReverbReverbTremoloVibratoMarch 2010Kilpatrick

Kilpatrick Audio Chora Lush, Echo Centric, Vibro Man and Lush Puppy Pedal Reviews


Versatility is, without a doubt, one of the biggest concerns that guitarists have. The last few decades have seen major additions to the gear world, with high focus on giving the player the most sounds with the best tone possible in the smallest amount of space, and trying to keep that balance. Sometimes, the gear fires on all cylinders, with each feature sounding distinct and usable. At other times the product is congested with so many bells and whistles that the tone chokes on its own multi-facted hubris. We’ve all been there, getting that latest and greatest, all-in-one device that does everything, only to realize later that it doesn’t do any one thing extremely well. Canada’s own Kilpatrick Audio has taken the multi-feature concept and merged it with compact pedal design, releasing four dual-function devices that cover a good range of modulation effects. Each has dual mono outputs to provide a stereo effect, noise-free bypass, and all are hand-built using quality components in their home nation of Canada

Echo Centric
(Echo with Stereo Syncopation)


Download Example 1
Standard Echo
Download Example 2
Syncopate Mode
Clips recorded with a Gretsch G6118T-LTV 125th Anniversary guitar into a Quidley 22, using a Sennheiser e609 and a Rode NT1 into Focusrite Saffire PRO 24 DSP, using Logic Studio.
With its ample controls—Wet/Dry, Delay Time, Feedback, and Timing—the Echo Centric is one of the least feature rich of the four. It concentrates on giving the player a solid, one-second maximum delay tone. A second mode, Syncopate, can be engaged by a second footswitch, which adds more subtle echoes between the main ones. In this mode, the Echo Centric shows its real strength, which is how it feeds its processed signal to two amplifiers. Most single-purpose delay units with two mono outputs send a dry signal to one output, and the delayed signal to another. The Kilpatrick pedal takes a different route, sending two separate syncopated delay signals. For example, if the Timing switch is set to Thirds, output B grants the first third, and output A supplies the second third. The switch can also be set to Quarters, supplying a completely different rhythm. The result is very similar to a multi-head delay tone, but not as dense as, say, what a Roland RE-201 Space Echo could achieve. With a Fender American Telecaster into both a Mesa Boogie Electra-Dyne and Marshall Super Bass, the result was an absolutely excellent stereo effect that is clean and precise. The delay stays rather subtle, even with the Wet/Dry control at more extreme positions. Some players might want that heavy wash that comes from extreme feedback settings, but for those who want a great delay that accents the original tone, the Echo Centric is a great choice. 
Buy if...
stereo syncopation is the name of your echo game.
Skip if...
you want the densest delay you can get.
Rating...


Street $249 - Kilpatrick Audio - kilpatrickaudio.com

Chora Lush
(Rich Chorus with Reverb)


Download Example 1
Fast Chorus
Download Example 2
Reverb
Clips recorded with a Gretsch G6118T-LTV 125th Anniversary guitar into a Quidley 22, using a Sennheiser e609 and a Rode NT1 into Focusrite Saffire PRO 24 DSP, using Logic Studio.
The Chora Lush is a great illustration of just how well Kilpatrick knows effect cooperation. An excellent chorus coupled with a solid reverb has long been a recipe for great guitar tones, but in some cases one half of the equation won’t cut it. As a dual-purpose pedal, the Chora Lush gives the player both effects, with strong attention paid to the chorus factor. Three controls adjust the chorus effect: Depth, Speed and a voicing switch labeled Choir/Solo. A single knob adjusts the amount of reverb, which can also be used separately from the chorus function. Likewise, the reverb is totally removed from the equation when the control is at its lowest setting. With a 1978 Gibson Les Paul Custom into the aforementioned Marshall Super Bass, the chorus was stunning, with a light drive dialed up on the amplifier to give the effect a thicker tone. Interestingly, the reverb was very good even though the effect was running through the main input. I’m personally not a fan of reverb when placed at the front end of an amp, as I prefer the cleaner tone that comes from placing it in an effects loop. Likewise, chorus has a much different sound when placed in a separate loop instead of in the main input. The gooey, vintage tone is replaced with a cleaner, more pristine one when set in this fashion, which is why I’ve kept these effects separate from one another in the past. While it may sacrifice the variety tones that can be achieved by using the effects in separate ways, the Chora Lush excels at providing guitarists two time-honored effects with superb tone. 
Buy if...
you want your chorus and reverb in one stompbox.
Skip if...
you want to run only one of the effects through an effects loop.
Rating...

Street $249 - Kilpatrick Audio - kilpatrickaudio.com


Lush Puppy
(Stereo Reverb with Delay)


Download Example 1
Reverb with Delay Size Switch - Small
Clips recorded with a Gretsch G6118T-LTV 125th Anniversary guitar into a Quidley 22, using a Sennheiser e609 and a Rode NT1 into Focusrite Saffire PRO 24 DSP, using Logic Studio.
In terms of spatial possibilities, the Lush Puppy is a monster. As more of a dedicated reverb pedal, the Lush Puppy also throws into the mix a high-quality delay circuit, with just enough delay time to really make the guitar tone soar. Mix adjusts both the reverb and delay signals in tandem with the unprocessed tone. Size either squeezes the reverb down to miniscule, or opens the roof to massive, expressive reverberations. The simple 500ms delay can be engaged separately, and is adjusted by a lone Delay control. Finally, the whole shebang is capped off with a Big/ Small switch, which gives the player the option of setting the reverb effect’s width. And the tone! The tone is smooth, smooth, smooth, and sat nicely in the effects loop of a Mesa Boogie Electra-Dyne half stack. In comparison to surf guitar, which has utilized spring reverb superbly for decades now, the Lush Puppy has more a plate-reverb flavor. This is certainly not a disparagement, as I love a huge, expansive tone as much as the next guitarist—but I can’t deny how much I love the sound of a spring reverb when smacking the strings really hard. A little more touch sensitivity could be had in the Lush Puppy, but it is one of the best sounding reverb pedals that I’ve played in a long time.

Buy if...
you want to create the sound of vast expanses.
Skip if...
you’re a complete sucker for spring reverb.
Rating...


Street $249 - Kilpatrick Audio - kilpatrickaudio.com


Vibro Man
(Touch-Sensitive Tremolo, Vibrato and Vibrating Filter)


Download Example 1
Filter Mode
Download Example 2
Vibrato Mode
Clips recorded with a Gretsch G6118T-LTV 125th Anniversary guitar into a Quidley 22, using a Sennheiser e609 and a Rode NT1 into Focusrite Saffire PRO 24 DSP, using Logic Studio.
I’ve saved the best for last. The Vibro Man, Kilpatrick’s multi-function modulation powerhouse, is a doozy. A total of three effects lie within its chassis, and there’s not a weak one in the bunch. A Vibrato/Filter depth adjust starts off the gamut of controls, followed by Speed and Tremolo depth. The Vibrato and Filter are engaged by a Vibe/Filter switch, and a Touch footswitch activates a touch-sensitive mode. Using a PRS Starla, some of the coolest modulation effects that I’ve achieved came from combining the Tremolo and Vibrating Filter effects. The filter has almost an envelope filter-quality to it, but not as extreme as a dedicated pedal for that purpose. The filter jumps through the instrument’s frequencies as notes are played, and some intense tones can come from this effect with the Touch mode turned on. Playing around with this setup for a while just solidified the thought in my mind: “No matter how much you’d like to cop Prince, you’re still not that good.” The tone of the tremolo effect was set at a perfect area of not too soft, but certainly not too choppy. It would have been nice to have a separate tone control for the tremolo, but with all of the other options available to me at the time, it was hardly an afterthought.
Buy if...
you have a desire for a vibrato with a huge range of tones.
Skip if...
a simple, one trick vibrato is in order.
Rating...


Street $249 - Kilpatrick Audio - kilpatrickaudio.com

The Final Mojo
Kilpatrick Audio’s four releases are all very impressive, with the Vibro Man certainly being the stellar standout. Each has its own weakness, but their strengths far outweigh anything that I could find—in every aspect from the excellent tone to dual outputs on each unit, to the easy access battery door— note to pedal manufacturers: it’s 2010... every pedal should have a door like this, or something equivalent. Apart from the Vibro Man’s ability to create otherworldly filtering, all are very complimentary to the guitar tone, sitting very nicely as a backdrop to the core dry signal. I was thoroughly impressed by how well the original tone stayed intact when the pedals were engaged.