Quick Hit: EarthQuaker Devices Arrows Review
Stupidly simple booster is a magical tone masseuse.
With all that EarthQuaker has done to expand and mutate the guitar soundscape, it’s almost weird to behold this beautifully uncomplicated little unit. But this all-discrete booster is balm for any soul seeking simplicity in a pedal rig or quick fixes for a clean boost jones.
The Arrows works seamlessly with amps of every kind. And while it doesn’t explicitly claim to be a “clean” boost, it’s one of the cleanest I’ve heard, magically exciting the mid- and high-mid range from single-coils and humbuckers without adding any real dirt until you reach the highest 25-30% of its range. And I love what the Arrows does after a fuzz. If you want to add fire to a chorus or outro, but don’t want to mangle the harmonic nuances of your fuzz, the Arrows adds presence and a major kick in the pants. This pedal showed up at a time when I’m enjoying economy in my set up. Nice timing, because boost solutions don’t get much more elegant, easy, or effective.
Test Gear: Fender Jaguar and Telecaster, ’70s Ibanez Les Paul copy, ’64 Fender Tremolux, ’60s Gibson Mariner, ’70s Music Man Sixty Five, Tonebender Mk. 1 and Mk. II copies, Sovtek Big Muff.
Adds warm presence and big, clean volume boost. Natural and mild overdrive tones at high settings.