New Arrivals For May 2020

It’s been the second full month of lockdown. eBay remains quiet, partly because sensible folks are reluctant to head out to post parcels, and partly because eBay has been limiting their discount sales fees to once a month.

The blog’s been quiet too. I’ve had some other things in life to deal with. So many basic, run-of-the-mill things are difficult-to-impossible to resolve when most of society has shut down. It’s one thing to know it, it’s quite another thing to experience it first hand.

Here’s what’s arrived this month. Spoiler alert: it’s all really good stuff, and there’ll be full First Impressions blog posts for each of them soon.

Mad Professor Big Tweedy with Super Tweed Mod (aka Custom Big Tweedy) Overdrive Pedal

I like the original Big Tweedy pedal. It absolutely nails that old Magnatone sound that’s all over the moving A Star Is Born. When I saw that Mad Professor had released their own modded version, I ordered one direct from them within minutes.

And fair play to them, it was here within 2 days. Then I just had to wait until I was sure that 72 hours were up, and definitely it was safe to open and explore.

With little else to distract me, I turned the first impressions post into a #CoffeeAndKlon episode. The short version: it’s a keeper.

Lovepedal High Power Tweed Twin Overdrive Pedal

I’ve fallen hard for Lovepedal’s pedals. The ones I’ve had just work really well with my guitar and amp of choice. They don’t come up on the second hand market here in the UK all that often, and when they do, I’m always interested.

The High Power Tweed Twin pedal (HPTT for short) is based on Lovepedal’s Les Luis. I’ve never played that pedal; I don’t know much about it at all. It aims to do the cranked tweed amp thing.

It’s been on my practice board ever since it arrived, sharing time with the Lark (see below). I’ll post my first impressions soon.

Mythos Lark Overdrive & Tremolo Pedal

This is the Rhett Shull signature drive pedal, modelled after his Gibson Skylark amp. Rhett is a session guitarist out of Atlanta, and a popular YouTuber and educator.

The Skylark is based on one of the earlier revisions of Fender’s Champ amp. Yup, another tweed-tone pedal for me to enjoy. Hopefully!

I pre-ordered this when it was announced, and after a lengthy journey across the Atlantic (the USPS’s idea of speedy was maybe true back in the 50s) – not to mention having to be ransomed from the UK authorities – it’s finally here.

Was it worth the wait? Well, not really. The problem is price.

Synergy BMan Preamp Module

This was a totally unplanned purchase. I’ve been writing my long-overdue “Marshall Origin One Year Later Review … One Year Late”, and I’ve been struggling with how best to describe how the Origin is different from other amps.

Yeah, I’m still getting frustrated when people talk about the Origin being a budget plexi amp. Nothing’s changed there in the last two years 🙂 In normal times, I’d borrow a JTM 45 reissue off a mate to do a new A/B demo, but that’s just not an option during a pandemic.

I decided to try a different direction. Marshall’s first amp – the JTM 45 – is based on the Fender Bassman. How does the Origin compare to the Bassman? I don’t have space for an actually Bassman, so I went for the next best thing.

A full First Impressions blog post to follow, but I can tell you that this might have become my desert island amp. That’s something that I was not expecting.

280K Pots For My Green Strat

Last summer, I picked up a Fender Player Strat in sage green. Forget that it’s a Mexican-made Strat. I enjoyed it so much that I had a set of Bare Knuckle 63 Veneer pickups fitted to it. They were an excellent upgrade.

There was just one problem. With standard 250K pots (these are the volume and tone controls on a Strat), the guitar was a little dark. I didn’t really notice until I started using the excellent Anasounds Element spring reverb pedal earlier this year.

Bare Knuckle Strat replacement pickups really want to be paired with their own 280K pots. (I was warned about this at the time.)

I’ve ordered a set of 280K pots – including a push/pull pot – and the guitar’s gone off to my friendly local tech to have them fitted. It’ll be an estimated 2-3 weeks before its back.

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