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How To Set Your Overdrive & Distortion Pedals [In A Band]

Published 5 Nov 2021

Welcome to the show! So this is a bit new for us. We’ve been asked many times for guitars in the context of a band. This is our first foray into doing that, adding bass and drums for the electric guitar to work with.
The point we’re making is simple enough: if you want clarity and definition from your overdrive and distortion pedals, then turn the gain down!
We then delve a little deeper into the tone control and try it with different pickups – we hope it’s useful.

Massive thanks to Dougie Mussard for being such a wonderful human and bashing the tubs for us.

How did we record this?
The drums are mic’d in the Glyn Johns method (Neumann TLM102 as the overheads), plus an extra snare mic (Beyerdynamic M201) underneath. The bass is DI’d via an Ampeg SVT DI, the guitar cabs are mic’d as usual (Austrian Audio OC18), plus our stereo room mics (AKGC414XL). Anyway, it’s spill city in the room in terms of the mics and we kinda love that.
Everything hits our UA Apollo interfaces for recording and I mixed it (Mick here) using Universal Audio Luna.

A note on the mix…
No doubt I'll get some grief in the comments about how the guitars are too loud / the kick drum sucks / the bass is too woofy, etc etc etc. Everyone is a mix expert, right?
Here are my thoughts. First up, the guitar is deliberately loud because this is That Pedal Show and it’s about guitars first and foremost. Secondly, the band in general might seem a little compressed and quiet compared with the voices. One reason among many for that is that I ain't Chris Lord-Alge or Bob Clearmountain. And no, you can’t remix it for us - we don’t have the time or inclination to deal with all that. It is what it is – we learn and develop constantly.

Enjoy the video!

Pedals & stuff in this episode…

• TheGigRig Three2One

• ProCo RAT 2
UK & Europe:
USA That Pedal Shop:

• Suhr Riot - Links to mini version
UK & Europe:

• Diamond Memory Lane Jr

• TheGigRig Humdinger

• TheGigRig G3

• BASS RIG. I’m using a Source Audio Spectrum filter pedal when the bass sounds weird.
Other than that it’s an Ampeg SVT DI hitting a Union Tube & Transistor LAB compressor into my Mesa 50:50 stereo power amp into a couple of 112 guitar cabs. We’re waiting for an Ampeg SVT head and cab to come up at the right price so we can have a real bass amp in here.

* Why do we have preferred retailer links? Find out here:

Interesting bits and go-to sections…
0:00 Oh no, they’re playing ‘music’
0:45 What are we doing today?
1:08 It’s Dougie on tubs!
1:41 The RAT and gain
3:45 Dan’s gain-down method
4:48 All the top end and dynamics comes back
8:45 Gain makes it easier to play?
10:05 Less gain makes you a better player
12:40 Let’s try the Suhr Riot
16:20 What about the tone control?
21:00 Exploring dynamics
24:15 Humbuckers and RAT
28:33 Humbuckers & Suhr Riot

Guitars in this episode:
• Fender Custom Shop ’63 Telecaster – Dan’s video here:

• Fender Player Precision Bass
UK & Europe:

Amps in this episode
• Matchless HC30 & ESD212 cab
• Two-Rock Classic Reverb Signature & 212 cab
• Mesa 50:50 stereo power amp and 2 x Zilla Custom 112 (the bass rig)

We hope you enjoy this episode. Please subscribe to our channel.

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