KMA Machines aims to unleash the "perfect metal monster" with its HM-2-style Guardian of the Wurm distortion pedal

KMA Machines Guardian of the Wurm
(Image credit: KMA Machines)

Berlin-based boutique brand KMA Machines has added to its comprehensive cohort of guitar effects with the all-new Guardian of the Wurm distortion pedal.

Born out of a creative concoction composed from KMA’s pre-existing Wurm distortion and an intuitive, ultra-fast noise gate, the company’s latest offering aims to offer up everything from chugging high-gain and chaotic Swedish death metal tones to shoegaze-y, prog-rock sounds.

And how does KMA Machines seek to make good on its promise? Well, the pedal comes equipped with three different clipping styles for a start, featuring a Silicon, Asymmetric and Off mode, as well as a four-band EQ of Low, Low Mid, High Mid and High.

The aforementioned clipping style is dictated by a toggle switch, with a secondary switch being charged with changing between the pedal’s EQ-Style mode. Options include an HM-2 variation, a tonally balanced KMA mode and a Both option, which “fattens” up the tone stacking.

KMA Machines Guardian of the Wurm

(Image credit: KMA Machines)

As an added tone-tweaking bonus, the EQ parameters go beyond the basics, and also offer up complementary knobs that can dictate the pedal’s variable center frequency.

Further controls arrive in the form of two footswitches – Terror and Tame – which let the user switch off either side of the pedal independently or in sync, and four knobs for Gain, Gate, Blend and Master parameters.

While the Master, Gate and Gain controls operate as you'd expect, the Blend knob serves as a clean blend parameter, included in an attempt to preserve the natural core of your tone underneath the pedal's high-gain layers.

In a bid to tame the noisy circuit, KMA has equipped the Guardian of the Wurm with a Blackmer VCA-style noise gate. When paired with the Gate control, the pedal promises to keep a precisely tuned lid on any unruly gains.

Located in between the Distortion and Noise Gate sections is an added TRS FX Loop for greater flexibility, and an EXT TRIG noise gate trigger jack for manipulating the gate via third-party pedals.

It's a pretty impressively spec'd unit, and given KMA's track record in producing high quality pedals – take its Logan Transcend Drive, for instance – perhaps there is some merit in the brand's claims that this is the "perfect metal monster".

The Guardian of the Wurm will be available for $349 when it arrives in late July.

For more information in the meantime, head over to KMA Machines.

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Matt Owen

Matt is a Staff Writer, writing for Guitar World, Guitarist and Total Guitar. He has a Masters in the guitar, a degree in history, and has spent the last 16 years playing everything from blues and jazz to indie and pop. When he’s not combining his passion for writing and music during his day job, Matt records for a number of UK-based bands and songwriters as a session musician.