10 outrageous effects pedals
25th Sep 2013 | 13:20
“The funny thing about that,” recalls Coopersonic co- founder Chris Olley of the Valveslapper, whose smutty controls included Balls, Ass, Tits and Thrust, “is that my wife came up with [the name]!”
The Nottingham firm has since grown up, and the original Slapper – as used by Alex Turner of the Arctic Monkeys – is now the sober Dual Valve Distortion.
Catalinbread Merkin Fuzz
Sure, the Catalinbread Merkin has top-drawer components and a range of vintage fuzz tones... but
it’s hard to take this shocking-pink stomper entirely seriously, given that it shares its name with the pubic wig worn by 15th-century prostitutes to hide symptoms of syphilis.
Gooby Electronics Bag Of Dicks
Presumably, Minnesota builder Casey Gooby had just finished work on this hand-crafted fuzz when the lightning bolt struck: “Perfect! All it needs now is a name inspired by a sackful of male genitalia...”
Malekko Barker Assmaster
Hand-built, true bypass and priced at $255, Malekko Barker’s octave fuzz pedal is a serious addition to your pedalboard. Serious, that is, apart from its name, which evokes a porn star from a 70s skin flick. Controls include Ass and Sensitivity, but the Harm switch really makes the TG team wince.
Monsterpiece Angry Dick 2000
The name suggests Dave Mustaine’s signature pedal, but the Angry Dick 2000 was dreamed up by cult US builder Richard Coibion as a twist on the classic Jordan Bosstone fuzz – it’s got balls.
Way Huge Camel Toe
Jeorge Tripps’ mythical box gave the 90s pedal market a shot in the arm with its triple-overdrive circuit. It also shares its name with the condition suffered by ladies wearing too-tight trousers.
Metasonix TX-2 Butt Probe
Dubbed by its Californian makers as the “ultimate anus-stretching appliance”, this stomper features a cartoon of a grimacing man with his pants down and a disclaimer that “anal lubricant is not included”. In reality, there’s no need to bend over, except to tweak the knobs: the Butt Probe TX-2 is an old-school distortion with 4BN6 vacuum tubes.
Devi Ever Soda Meiser
As seen on the ’boards of everyone from Tame Impala to My Bloody Valentine, this vintage- flavoured fuzz is worth the arched eyebrows you’ll get from your gran when it falls out of your gigbag.
Way Huge Swollen Pickle
Way Huge founder Jeorge Tripps reduced industry professionals to snickering schoolboys when
this high-gain fuzz relaunched at the 2008 NAMM show. Interpol, Black Stone Cherry and Clutch are all known to have Swollen Pickles. The pedal, that is, not the medical condition.
Electro-Harmonix - Big Muff Pi
We couldn’t miss out the Muff. Not just the sweetest, longest- sustaining fuzz box on the market, used by everyone from Hendrix to The White Stripes, Mike Matthews and Bob Myer’s iconic silver stomper was also the one that turned the pedal-naming market into a dirty joke. An honorary mention goes to the Metal Muff, which sounds like something you’d find on the Terminatrix.