Wednesday, 24 August 2011

Fender Fuzz Wah

  I've always respected Fender's ability to not give a shit and try things that may not make much sense at the time but seem to really strike a chord with players years later. I don't think they have some incredible foresight to see what some nerdy gearheads will want 30 years down the line, I believe they made and continue to make these products to appeal to players of their respective eras. Which brings me to what may be a stroke of genius or an abomination depending on your POV. I picked one of these original beauties up recently from a craigslist seller and am still not sure what to think of it. I will admit I'm not much of wah-wah fan. I enjoy listening to other people use them when it's used well. I just can't seem to use them to any good effect.

  Much like the Fender Blender, Fender has reissued this pedal as the Fender Fuzz/Wah Custom. I will say I find the original sounds nicer to my ears but I always think these things are subjective. The fuzz part of the equation is really pretty sweet. It's on or it's off and there's no way to tweak the tone other than the volume (used by sweeping the top plate of the pedal left to right). But it's a fat, warm, bluesy type fuzz and great for both leads and rhythm work. The wah effect utilizes a rope pulley system. Maybe this is more common than I'm aware but this is the only time I've ever seen anything like this. The effect itself seems much more subtle than other wah-wah pedals I've heard, however my pedal seems to have a noticeable volume drop when the wah is engaged so that may be an issue with my pedal only. Lastly, it is also technically a volume pedal. As I said before sweeping the top plate controls the volume of the effects. Fender you magnificent bastards WTF were you thinking? A fuzz/wah/volume pedal sounds like a brilliant idea in theory, I'm just not sure what to make of the practical application.

  This thing is also a beast. It's big, heavy, shiny and good luck fitting it on a pedal board. That being said I think it looks tits. I'm still not sure what to think of it though. Writing this has convinced me to plug it in and stop neglecting it, maybe it will grow on me. The fuzz alone is pretty great, maybe I'll start to love the wakkawakka just as much.

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