Danish boutique effects pedal maker Reuss Effects has teamed up with Mogwai frontman and electric guitar player Stuart Braithwaite for a signature distortion/fuzz hybrid pedal, the Plasmatron.
Described as a tonal amalgamation of the units Braithwaite uses on his own rig – namely, the Danelectro Fab Tone distortion pedal and a slew of op amp-based Muff-esque fuzz pedals – the Plasmatron seeks to blend the best of both worlds into one succinct unit.
To achieve this, the pedal comes equipped with Made-in-Japan Nec brand Upc4558 op amps and 1SS133 clipping diodes, all of which are housed in a sleek chassis designed by Aidan Moffat of Arab Strap.
The result is said to be more than just a “traditional two-in-one” pedal, as the Plasmatron stacks the two separate sound palettes in parallel, with a Mix control serving to blend the distortion and fuzz via one output channel.
Fully counterclockwise means only the Fab Tone-style sounds can be heard, while cranking the Mix control clockwise gives you unadulterated fuzz-drenched Muff tones.
Controls for Fuzz Tone and Fuzz Intensity are on hand to tweak the op amp circuit, while a sole Distortion knob is in charge of sculpting the Big Tone sound. One footswitch engages both circuits, with additional knobs for Level, Bass and Treble capping off the comprehensive-yet-streamlined control layout.
Not only have Braithwaite and Reuss aimed to cram in two of the Mogwai maestro’s favored pedals into one unit, they have also sought to introduce a number of tweaks that seek to upgrade the utility and versatility of the original circuits.
Such tweaks include fitting the Fab Tone-style circuit with a switchable option to reduce the pre-gain of the input stage of the circuit, giving the user greater control over how much distortion is introduced overall.
The op amp fuzz circuit has also been slightly modified, with Reuss adding in an internal Tight switch – an addition that aims to reduce the circuit’s notorious low-end for a tighter, more mix-cutting fuzz sound.
The Plasmatron, which takes its name from Stuart Braithwaite’s Twitter handle, will be hand-built by the Reuss Effects team, with 100 pedals being constructed for the unit’s first run.
Preorders for delivery later this year are now open, with each pedal listing for €199.
For more information, head over to Reuss Effects.
This isn't the first signature Mogwai pedal – the Scottish post-rock icons once partnered with Electro-Harmonix for a highly limited run of Mogwai Big Muffs, examples of which now fetch upwards of $1,000 on the used market.