Vintage style fuzz from Analog Man
|Download Example 1|
Volume 2, Tone 1, Fuzz 3. Epiphone Slash Les Paul, bridge humbucker.
|Download Example 2|
Volume 2, Tone 11, Fuzz 5. PRS Starla X, bridge soapbar pickup
|Download Example 3|
Volume 3, Tone 9, Fuzz 5. Fender Strat, middle pickup.
|Clips recorded through a Fryette Memphis with Shure SM57 into Pro Tools.|
Built for Exploration
Like all of Analog Man’s pedals, the Astro Tone is built rock solid. The case sports cool graphics that evoke a ’60s aerospace company logo. The Astro Tone also features true bypass switching and is built around a simple set of controls: Volume, Tone, and Fuzz. And pedal geeks take note: the first few hundred of these gems will be built around original 1966 Fairchild Semiconductor silicon transistors that were an essential part of the original Astrotone’s sonic signature.
I began evaluating the Astro Tone using a Les Paul and a Fryette Memphis amp. Despite its mid-’60s lineage, the Astro Tone’s basic character resides somewhere between a fuzz and distortion. It’s not strictly limited to the bee-buzzing sounds of a Maestro Fuzz Tone or the MKI Sola Sound Tone Bender typically associated with ’66 fuzz. Nor is it as buzzy, compressed, or over the top as a Fuzz Face. Instead the Astro Tone’s fuzz has a full, crunchy growl.
Using neck and bridge humbuckers made it easy to dial up a smoother ’70s rock tone. Single-coils sounded great too, driving the Astro Tone into warm, bluesy territory without diminishing the pedal’s capacity for sustain. A Paul Reed Smith Starla X with soapbar pickups worked beautifully with the Astro Tone too, exhibiting a knack for bold overdrive with ample low end and plenty of rock crunch. And unlike many fuzzes, each guitar cleaned up nicely by just rolling off the guitar’s volume.
The Tone knob is most effective past the half way point up to the maximum setting. And delightfully, I didn’t encounter much noise save for when cranked the Fuzz knob all the way. I preferred the tone of the Fuzz backed off a little anyway, at about 95% as opposed to full on.
Fuzz tone—especially the mid-’60s variety—isn’t very useful to many contemporary players. But the beauty of the Astro Tone is that it covers that buzzy territory while also being able to deliver thicker, saturated sounds. It’s great for giving both flavors of kick to smaller or cleaner amps. With a cranked large amp, the Astro Tone acts more like a booster. So if you liked the sound of the original Sam Ash Fuzzz Boxx or the Astrotone Fuzz, but also need burlier tones that shine in a band context, you’ll appreciate Analog Man’s 21st-century version. It could become your secret weapon.
you desire a beefy fuzz tone and buzzy vintage vibe.
you need modern, high-gain distortion.
Street $185 - Analog Man - analogman.com
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Created in collaboration with legendary guitarist George Lynch of Dokken and Lynch Mob fame, the Mr.Scary Mod adds an adjustable tube gain stage and an onboard Deep control, which together are designed to enable an amp to have increased sustain while still retaining note definition and dynamics.
LegendaryTones, LLC today announced production availability of its new Mr. Scary Mod, a 100% pure tube module designed to instantly and easily expand the capabilities of many classic amplifiers with additional gain and tone shaping. Created in collaboration with legendary guitarist George Lynch of Dokken and Lynch Mob fame, the Mr.Scary Mod adds an adjustable tube gain stage and an onboard Deep control, which together are designed to enable an amp to have increased sustain while still retaining note definition and dynamics.
Originally released as the Lynch Mod in February 2021, the updated Mr. Scary Mod features the same core circuit as the Lynch Mod but is now equipped with a revised tube mix combo per George’s preference as well as a facelift in a newly redesigned electro-galvanized steel enclosure. As with the Lynch Mod, each run will be limited and the first run in Pumpkin Orange with Black hardware is limited to just 150 pieces worldwide.
The Mr. Scary Mod adds an adjustable tube gain stage on top of the cathode follower position, keeping note definition and articulation while further increasing sustain. Each Mr. Scary mod is meticulously built by hand in the USA, one at a time, and tuned using high-grade components. Equipped with a single ECC81 (12AT7) in the first position and ECC83 (12AX7) in the second, the Mr. Scary Mod can clean up beautifully when rolling down your guitar’s volume, and still adds scorching gain when you roll it back up. This is a gain stage that’s been tuned and approved by the ears of the maestro George Lynch himself.
“The Mr. Scary Mod excels with dynamics and is incredibly touch-responsive, allowing me to shift from playing clear, lightly compressed cleans to full-out aggressive sustain and distortion –and control it all simply by varying my guitar’s volume control and picking,” said GeorgeLynch. “In many ways, it’s an old-school approach, but it’s also so much more natural and expressive in addition to being musically fulfilling when you can play both the guitar and amp dynamically together this way.”
The Mr. Scary Mod installs in minutes, is safe and effective to use, and requires no special tools or re-biasing of the amplifier. Simply insert the module into the cathode follower preamp position of compatible amplifiers (includes Marshall 2203/2204/1959/1987 circuits) and
immediately get the benefit of enjoying a hot-rodded amp that delivers all the pure harmonic character that comes with an added pure tube gain stage. The handmade in the USA Mr. Scary Mod is now available to order for $319.
For more information, please visit legendarytones.com.
October Audio has miniaturized their NVMBR Gain pedal to create two mini versions of this beautifully organic-sounding circuit – including an always-on gain device.
The NVMBR Gain is a nonlinear amp that transitions gracefully from clean boost to overdriven tones. Volume increases from just over unity to about 10db before soft-clipping drive appears for another 5db of boost. Its extraordinary ease of use is matched by outstanding versatility: you can use it as a clean boost, push a stubborn amp into overdrive or create a just-breaking-up sound at any amp volume.
October Audio’s new family of mini NVMBR Gain pedals includes a switchable version that allows you to bypass the effect: one option features brand logo pedal graphics, while the other sports a fun “Witch Finger” graphic with a Davies knob as the“fingernail”.
The second version in the new lineup is an always-on device featuring the Witch Finger graphic and Davies knob, with the same NVMBR Gain circuit that lies at the core of the switchable version.
- Knob controls gain and clipping simultaneously
- Stunning silver hammertone finish
- Switchable versions are true-bypass, available with classic or witch finger graphics
- Authentic Davies knobs, including the “fingernail”
- 9V center negative power supply required
- Dimensions: 3.63 x 1.50 x 1.88 in
Witch Finger (always on NVMBR Gain) demo
All October Audio pedals are assembled in Richmond, VA, and available for purchase directly through the online shop. Street price is $109 for NVMBR Gain footswitch versions and $89 for the always-on device.
For more information, please visit octoberaudio.com.