Effects

Malekko on a mission

Malekko on a mission

MALEKKO HEAVY Industry co-owner Josh Holley has come a long way from painting pedals in the driveway of a house in Austin, Texas, but that is basically how it was done when the synth geek turned MI entrepreneur started back in 2006. Today, Malekko is the majority occupant of a building Holley now co-owns in the heart of Portland, Oregon’s Buckman neighborhood, east of the Willamette River.  more...
Welcome to NAMM-aheim, CA. Pop: <i>Gear!</i>

Welcome to NAMM-aheim, CA. Pop: Gear!

THE 115th NAMM show is in the books, and it was a big one according to show organizers. The National Association of Music Merchants said a record 1,726 exhibiting companies representing more than 6,000 brands were showcased at the 2016 affair, a 7% increase in exhibiting companies over last year’s event.  more...
Blackbird Pedalboards finds new nest

Blackbird Pedalboards finds new nest

SOME BUSINESSES are born out of necessity. Some are built out of desire. Still others... are just flukes. You’ll find by talking with many of the smaller gear manufacturers around, that their businesses were born from first doing a little something nice for themselves... and then that ‘little something nice’ catching the attention of a fellow musician, and snowballing from there.  more...
Black Cat Pedals purrs along

Black Cat Pedals purrs along

TOM HUGHES loves gear. He isn’t shy about it. So stoked are the flames of his passion for the lineage of vintage noisemakers, that back in the early 2000s he set out to compile a book that would be become the go-to tome for those seeking knowledge regarding old school pedals… Analog Man’s Guide to Vintage Effects. Color us unsurprised to find when we visited the Black Cat Pedals shop in New England that a pair of glass cases full of top-flight stomps was there to greet us, including a Mike Beigel-signed Mu-Tron III, a Bob Sweet-autographed Mojo Vibe, a Hot Chili Tubester, big-boxed Gainster, a gold Klon Centaur and a variety of wood-boxed Electro-Harmonix pedals among others.  more...
Our First Look: the Line 6 Helix guitar processor

Our First Look: the Line 6 Helix guitar processor

RECENTLY a producer decided to drag me kicking and screaming into the digital age with the Line 6 Helix. It took him months to do it. I fought every step of the way. What you should probably know about me is that I didn’t have a cell phone until like 2006 and I didn’t want one. I’m not a big fan of change, or things that make doing things easier. I have at times in my life had a Steve Albini-like dedication to analog. Over time though, brands like Strymon have convinced me that digital tape emulation is not a sin worthy of excommunication.  more...
Strymon Is More Than Meets The Eye

Strymon Is More Than Meets The Eye

What’s in a name? For the Damage Control crew, a lot... if that name is Strymon. The success of the company’s attractive range of digital effects boxes has blurred the line between its name on paper and its most successful brand. GEARPHORIA visited the California headquarters of Damage Control to talk all things Strymon, including the lowdown on the new Deco pedal, the art of listening and what the future may hold for the company.  more...
Visual Sound’s Bob Weil: Can You See It?

Visual Sound’s Bob Weil: Can You See It?

Seeing is believing. Bob Weil founded Visual Sound on that simple notion. Looking for a better solution to the existing volume pedals on the market, Weil employed a light meter that would show guitarists how much oomph was passing through the pedal. Things were good... then things got bad. Out of money on the cusp of the release of the company’s flagship Jekyll and Hyde distortion/overdrive pedal, Visual Sound filed for bankruptcy. Weil, accepting but not happy about the defeat, started his search for another job. Not long into the process, an unexpected phone call from overseas changed the game and brought Visual Sound roaring back to life.  more...