Soar high or dive deep with a reverse delay and reverb that deals in boundless mystery.
Octave-down reverbs! Dizzying reverse textures.
Control function shifts can be confusing.
Walrus Audio Lore
Reverse reverb and delay are fantastic audio magic tricks. Neither effect produces echoes as much as they warp time. It’s an amazing bit of trickery, and one that Walrus Audio’s Lore does very well. But it’s not the only way Lore warps time. Lore also routes reverse delay through reverse reverb, stuffs reverse reverb through regular reverb, and sends pitch-delay reverb into a second pitch-delay reverb. Best of all, it has a reverse-delay-into-octave-down setting that activates tectonic-scale rumblings—particularly when you pair it with a nasty fuzz. If you’re after massive and mysterious sounds, Lore is a powerful enabler of that quest.
Lore achieves the huge scale of its reverb and delay sounds by running two DSP chips in series with two analog feedback paths. It’s a simple idea, but it makes it possible to achieve the effect of stacking time-manipulation pedals with the benefit of extra clarity and cohesiveness. The five programs are based on the routings described above with an additional program that sends a reverse reverb through an octave-up reverb. And they are modified by a flexible, if sometimes complex-feeling, control set that can home in on very specific sounds. There are no presets on Lore, which at first seems a curious omission for a pedal of this complexity and sonic range. This means extracting the most from the unit takes some study. Thankfully, it’s the kind of study you can very happily lose yourself in for days.
Save for the X knob, which controls decay in three of the five programs, the controls will be familiar to anyone who has tinkered with basic delay and reverb. The feedback and regen controls may shift in feel and, to some degree, function, depending on the program. But generally, they behave as feedback and regen controls would work on any delay or reverb. The same goes for the time, tone, mix, and modulation controls. Walrus may require practice, but the path to mastering the controls is intuitive.
The tension between Lore’s tendency to soar and the massive weight behind these sounds is very exciting stuff.
The Endless, Twisting Helix
Though Lore is clearly built for generating very big spaces, the complexity of the textures you can build creates very nice washes that work in the slipstream of low-effect mixes. Even octave-up settings, which can often dominate a reverb sound in not-so-pleasant ways, can be fashioned into pretty cool variations on tight, reflective room sounds at lower mix levels.
The big sounds are the main attraction here. And there are many that are easy to imagine as the bedrock of songs and riffs. Program 5—which routes one pitch delay into another and introduces fourth, fifth, and octave intervals—does, as Walrus suggests, often behave like both harmonizer and sequencer at times, depending on the feedback settings. You have to work to tame high-octave artifacts (as with other programs, I often kept the tone controls at minimum). But doing so yields ghostly percolations in the wake of your dry signal.
For me, though, the stars of Lore’s programs are the octave-down modes in programs 3 and 4. In both settings—which run reverse delay into an octave-down reverb and reverse reverb into standard reverb, respectively—the presence of octave-down content and the ability to isolate and enhance it with the tone, X, feedback, and regen controls create an oceanic pull and weight to many styles of playing. With fuzz in front, these tones burrow even deeper. Sound seems to fracture under the weight of the low-end content at times. And the tension between Lore’s tendency to soar and the massive weight behind these sounds is very exciting stuff. Anyone who has either chased the tone of Neil Young’s octave-divider-meets-blown-out-Deluxe or spent time working in dark ambient zones will find a wealth of heavy and vaguely sinister textures here.
It’s easy to imagine plugging in the Lore on a rainy Saturday morning and not emerging from the practice space until night falls again. These are time manipulations you can get lost in and converse with. And they can be huge in scope and sonically weird without obscuring musicality. The appeal of some tones here will be highly subjective. Players who find octave-up reverb cloying may want to round down the tones score in the ratings box. But even my chilly feelings toward octave-up reverb didn’t dim my enthusiasm for the potential in the octave-down reverb, particularly when paired with gain devices. Lore did find me longing for a few extra sounds—I wish there were more of the tight, whooshing backward-reverb textures that mark the work of My Bloody Valentine and Jimmy Page. Even without these colors, I found a lot of room to roam in Lore, and I suspect most players will too.
- Walrus Audio Descent Reverb Review - Premier Guitar ›
- Walrus Audio Unveils the Mira Optical Compressor - Premier Guitar ›
- Walrus Audio Slötvå Guitar Pedal Review - Premier Guitar ›
Looking for more great gear for the guitar player in your life (yourself included!)? Check out this year's Holiday Gear Finds!
D'Addario XPND Pedalboard
DR-05X Stereo Handheld Recorder
Wampler Pedals Ratsbane
Flare is a dual-function pedal with a tube-like booster and a 1970s-style ring modulator effect that can be played separately or together.
Flare’s ring modulator is based on the iconic tone of the original Dan Armstrong Green Ringer. This vintage classic was made famous by Frank Zappa who loved the unusual modulations created by generating a harmonic octave over notes. Messiah’s version offers two control knobs: a “Sparkle” tone attenuator and output Level control. Its taupe-gold body, purple and green knobs and stick-figure rock ’n’ roller holding up a flame convey an appropriately rockin’70s vibe.
In a unique twist, Messiah’s Flare pairs the ringer with a warm tube-style boost instead of a fuzz. Flare feeds the booster into the ringer for an extra punch, while preserving the Green Ringerspirit. The ringer side also turns any fuzz into an octafuzz, and it has the ability to quiet signal background noise fed through it.
The booster side features a single Boost knob to control the MOSFET circuit, making it very tube-amp-friendly with a warm, organic boost and gain of up to 32dB.
The pedal is a distinct improvement over the 1970s pedal that inspired it. “Most ringer pedals don’t track well,” Tom Hejda, owner of Messiah Guitars. “The player can’t rely on repeating the same effect even with the most consistently played notes. We carefully matched the components, so our ringer follows your every move, producing that slightly dirty octave you expect on demand.”
Messiah developed this vintage octave pedal with flexible features so that people who love that messy, dirty Zappa-esque sound can get there with ease but there’s also something for those who have not fallen in love with fuzz or the Green Ringer alone. Flare offers an array of sonic options while retaining simplicity in the controls.
Each Flair Pedal Includes:
- 3 control knobs: Boost, Sparkle, and Level
- Two effects – Ring Modulator and Boost – can be used together or separately
- Space-saving top side jacks
- Durable, cast aluminum alloy 125B enclosure with fun artwork
- Easy to see, illuminated True-bypass foot switch
- Standard 9V pedal power input
Flare Pedal Demo
Messiah Guitars pedals are designed with an explorative player in mind. Like their custom guitars and amplifiers, Messiah’s pedals are hand-crafted in Los Angeles for a long life with guaranteed quality.
Flare retails for $199.00 and can be purchased directly at Messiah Guitars or you can hear it in person at Impulse Music Co. in Canyon Country, CA.
For more information, please visit messiahguitars.com.
This feathery little guy is a joy to play because of its incredibly quick response to your right hand - much faster and more expressive than your typical auto-wah pedal.
If it looks like a duck, acts like a duck, and QUACKS like a duck, then it must be a duck. That's how we came up with the name for our new envelope filter. This feathery little guy is a joy to play because of its incredibly quick response to your right hand - much faster and more expressive than your typical auto-wah pedal. Trevor explains how this is possible in the launch video, as well as gives a demo on Le Canard’s operation.
The attack control determines how quickly the filter responds to the envelope, and the decay sets how quickly the filter releases afterward. The range controls which frequency spectrum the filter does its magic on. Add to this relay-based full-bypass switching with failsafe, and you've got one crazy little quacky beast. It is so expressive that you'll want to give up on your rocker-wah forever.
The MayFly Le Canard envelope filter features:
- Super fast responding envelope follower. Touch it and it jumps!
- Range control to dial in the character of the filter
- Attack control to control how fast the filter moves on that first touch
- Release control to control how slowly the filter slides back to baseline
- Full bypass using relays with Fail SafeTM (automatically switches to bypass if the pedal loses power)
- Cast aluminum enclosure with groovy artwork
- MSRP $149 USD ($199 CAD)
Introducing the MayFly Le Canard Envelope Filter
All MayFly pedals are hand-made in Canada.
For more information, please visit mayflyaudio.com.
Outlaw Effects introduces their next generation of NOMAD rechargeable battery-powered pedal boards.
Available in two sizes, NOMAD ISO is a compact, versatile tool that offers the convenience of a fully powered board plus the additional freedom of not having to plug into an outlet. NOMAD ISO is ideal for stages with limited outlet availability, quick changeovers, busking outdoors, temporary rehearsal locations, and more.
NOMAD ISO builds upon the legacy of the ultra-convenient and reliable NOMAD rechargeable pedalboard line originally launched in 2018. The brand new NOMAD ISO editions feature eight isolated outputs (1 x 9V DC, and 1 switchable 9V/12V DC) for even more versatility and clean, quiet power. With an integrated lithium-ion battery pack boasting 12800mAh capacity, NOMAD ISO can fuel a wide array of pedals, and will last over 10 hours* on a single charge.
Each NOMAD ISO pedal board includes adhesive hook & loop pedal-mounting tape, eight (8) standard DC connector cables, and one (1) reverse polarity DC cable, giving you everything you need to build your ultimate "off-the-grid" rig. A rugged, road-ready padded gig bag with shoulder strap is also included, to safely protect your gear while you're on the move.
NOMAD ISO S
NOMAD ISO S: MSRP $309 / MAP: $249
Dimensions: 19 ¼" x 5 ¼"
NOMAD ISO M
NOMAD ISO M: MSRP $349 / MAP $279
Dimensions: 19 ¼" x 11"
More info: https://www.outlawguitareffects.com.