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The Year in Gear 2016

Come with us, time travelers, as we revisit a year’s worth of axes, amps, stomps, basses, baritones, and other tools of our music-making trade—all deemed worthy of the Premier Gear Award.

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Catalinbread Katzenkönig

As Joe Gore pointed out in his review of the Katzenkönig, working with old circuits need not rule out creativity. The Katzenkönig proves the power of imaginative circuit DNA scrambling—mating the raw potency of Tone Bender MKII on the front end with the tone shaping power and thrust of a RAT on the output end. The result is tight, tough, explosive, surprisingly easy to wrangle, and above all refreshingly original.
$169 street, catalinbread.com

Click here to read the full review

Come with us time travelers, as we revisit a year’s worth of axes, amps, stomps, basses, baritones, and other tools of our music-making trade—all deemed worthy of the Premier Gear Award. This year’s list is as diverse as ever: Classics revisited, shred machines made affordable, fuzzes refined and made more fiendish, amps that blast and purr, basses that boom, and time-warping delays and reverbs that mock astronomers’ notions about the cosmos. From manufacturers big and small, these delights await you in the pages ahead. Enjoy the voyage.