Paul Reed Smith may hate pedals, but his first foray into the realm delivers nothing but gems.

Inside each box containing a brand new PRS pedal, there’s a little fold-out card with a picture of Paul Reed Smith and a simple caption: “I hate pedals.” It’s not hard to imagine Smith’s indifference to stompboxes. PRS guitars are immaculately executed, ultra-playable instruments that reflect a focus on elemental interactions between fingers, strings, and fretboard. Indeed, for much of Paul Reed Smith’s career, stompboxes were probably held in the same regard as a broken toaster—a needless impediment to the communication of unadulterated tone.

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Yves Jarvis’ methods for simulating effects include using a whammy bar while riding his guitar’s volume for reversed guitar sounds. But many are done the old-fashioned way: manipulating tape on his TEAC reel-to-reel as it passes from one head to another.

Embracing battered 6-strings, lo-fi tech, tunings du jour, and his own restless muse, the singer-songwriter does whatever he can to make his guitar-playing life difficult.

Yves Jarvis—born Jean-Sébastien Yves Audet—is allergic to being complacent. “I don’t like to tune my guitar live,” the Canadian-born singer-songwriter says about his almost irrational fear of creative ennui. “I don’t even have a tuner. I like to make my entire set in the same tuning—that’ll be an alternate tuning, it’ll be something random. I force myself to find a way to reinterpret all my songs in the same tuning.”

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It's time for everyone's favorite giveaway, STOMPBOXTOBER! Enter here for your chance to win the just announced PRS Mary Cries Optical Compressor! Come back tomorrow for another chance to win.

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