Saturday, October 17

New Pedal: Voodoo Labs Tremolo

In my ongoing quest to become a great worship leader, I got a new pedal today! I've developed a growing appreciation for tremolo in guitar playing, thanks in large part to MapleNeck's post a little while back that really opened my eyes to all the ways that trem is being used in music today. If you're like me, the first sound that comes to your mind when you think tremolo is surf music of the '50s and '60s, which is certainly cool, but definitely well past it's prime. Just getting some varied examples of tremolo in action really helped me think about this under-used effect in a new light!

At the same time, I already had a trem on my board: the Danelectro Tuna Melt. And don't get me wrong, definitely a gem of a pedal for the price. I think I paid a grand total of $15 for mine, and while the "hard" section is pretty useless, the "soft" side is really, really convincing, especially for the price. What I didn't like about it, and something that actually caused it to be not usable for me, is that the jacks on mine are particularly noisy. If I were to bump the pedal, not to mention actually use the footswitch with my foot, it would make a nice loud scraping sound. Definitely not a noise that is conducive to worship.

And so, after spotting this guy on Craigslist (the bane of my wallet) for a straight $50, I give you:

Like I said, I've only had it for approximately one hour. Already though, I'm impressed. I wanted this one in particular after having read a lot of reviews and shootouts for trems (many of which have also praised the Tuna Melt as a great deal) that put this one at or near the top. It's definitely nice.

The knobs are: intensity (or depth, or mix, or anything similar to that), slope (which blends between a hard and soft effect), speed and volume. This is basically all of the functionality of the Tuna Melt, except that the slope knob set to a harder setting is actually usable, and it has a volume knob, which is nice because the Tuna Melt gave a little volume boost while engaged, whereas you can set this trem to unity, or boost it, or even cut it a little. Whatever the situation calls for. And the best part is that the switch is pretty much silent, and there's no annoying or off-putting noises that come out of this pedal.

Is this my end-all, be-all tremolo pedal? Probably not. I could make any number of jokes involving me selling it tomorrow to get something better, but I'll just say that as good as this pedal sounds (and I'm only beginning to listen to it), it doesn't have one feature that I think is probably really important to a trem: a tap tempo switch. We'll see how it plays out, though. $50 is a steal for this pedal, and it's not an effect that forms the basis of my sound, so it may be good enough for a long while. I also updated my rig page to account for my new child, so check it out!


  1. Great deal! $50 is killer for that. :)

  2. Yeah, something I definitely could not pass up, though my wallet wishes that there were fewer of those kinds of deals around...