Acorn ADHD Fuzz Review
Fuzz meets synth. Funky, freakish chaos ensues.
Many tone and texture surprises to unlock. Cool fuzz tone. Oscillators produce rich sounds.
Easy to get lost in the early going stage.
Getting utterly lost is half the fun of using Acorn Amps’ ADHD Fuzz. In fact, getting lost will often end up producing your best musical outcome. Part oscillator-driven synthesizer and part fuzz, the ADHD feels arcane and even primitive in synthesis terms. But the interactions among the oscillator, filter, and fuzz effects yield amazing results.
When you start with the pedal at its mellowest setting (with the fuzz/oscillator balance and tone fully clockwise), the signal feels vaguely boosted with throbs of low-level oscillation around it. The fuzz element becomes more fuzz-like, though, as you advance the balance. And along the way the threshold control (which sweeps between droning oscillations and gated ones) and the frequency dial (which adjusts the pitch of the oscillator) interact to create everything from vocal, vowel-y filter effects to crackling, irregular decay. Keeping the balance control on the clockwise side of noon enables you to foreground fuzz textures while harmonizing drones (that can be adjusted to pitch) and/or fractured articles of oscillator-driven chaos pile up around you. Don’t worry though. If you get in trouble, the gate or balance control can save you fast.
The Acorn ADHD is a musical puzzle—just the way modular synthesis can be. You’ll make ugly sounds as you decode its secrets. But the ADHD is full of beautifully funky, obscene, confrontational, and mysterious tones that can distinguish a guitar part or be the genesis of a whole musical idea or song. This is a pedal best used by turning off preconceptions and letting your mind drift. It could even become a very noisy meditation ritual. Just be sure to record the brilliant tones you’ll encounter along the way.
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