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Guitar pedals have a lot more in common with modular synthesizers than most guitarists realize. Both use a lot of cables to guide a signal through sound shaping units chosen and tweaked by a player to create a distinctive sound. Dan Snazelle spent many years playing with guitars and synths before he decided bridge the gap between them in 2007. Snazzy FX began with the Audio Ark, a massive signal shaper built on commission in NYC, and has since expanded to include three pedals and two synth modules, with more on the way. Snazelle realized that a “super processor” was a bit much for the average player and began splitting the Audio Ark into smaller, more affordable pedals that provided tools long absent in the guitar community. LFOs, envelope following, and CV inputs are only the beginning of control with boxes like the Tracer City, that is as much an instrument as the sound coming into it.
Wow and Flutter FX Pedal – $329
Effects today are mostly remakes of past innovations and focus on the purpose of the original instead of what made it sound magical. Tape delays were responsible for some of the most unique sounds ever to come out of a stereo, not because of the way they functioned, but because of the way they malfunctioned. Dan Snazelle missed the ways a tape machine could destroy a sound and set out to create a pedal that could explore the world of malfunctioning tape. The Wow and Flutter functions like a normal delay with knobs for Volume, Gain, Delay, Feedback, Dry/Wet, Attack, and Decay, but includes two extra controls not found on any other pedal. The Warp and Threshold knobs control the amount and depth of tape malfunction happening to your signal and do everything from subtle vibratos, chorusing, and flange to wild pitch-shifting, rubber band delays, and extreme audio mangling. The Wow and Flutter is incredibly versatile and perfect for those not content with safe, modern effects.