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With no shortage of boutique pedal makers out there, it's never been a better time to be a guitarist. It does mean that choosing pedals can be a seriously big deal, but there are always workshops that can be counted on to keep delivering high-quality effects. EarthQuaker Devices is one of those shops. Like so many other boutique effects pedal builders, EarthQuaker began as a one-man operation. Working out of Akron, Ohio, Jamie Stillman started the company in 2004 and soon recruited a whole team to his side, including his wife, Julie. Since then they've been creating a steady stream of amazing pedals with a look and sound that's all their own.
Every EarthQuaker Devices effects pedal is built completely by hand with the company’s humorous style on full display. Take the Speaker Cranker for example—this overdrive pedal has only one adjustment: "More." There's a touch of germanium sound in the Speaker Cranker, but if you want to take it up another notch, there's also the Crimson Drive Germanium Overdrive. Another unique EarthQuaker Devices pedal is The Depths, a powerful vibe machine that can even give your guitar an underwater sound if that's what you need. These effects are just a few of EarthQuaker's accomplishments.
To hear EarthQuaker Devices in action, look no further than Canadian guitarist Dallas Green. Formerly a member of Alexisonfire and now focusing on his solo work as City and Colour, Dallas has plenty of EarthQuaker on his pedalboard. One of his favorites is the Disaster Transport series of pedals, which are real workhorses when it comes to echo, delay and reverb effects. The two-in-one Disaster Transport SR even comes with expression controls for repeats and bleeding the two delay channels together to create sounds you have to hear to believe came from a single pedal. Some of Dallas Green's other go-to EarthQuaker Devices pedals are the Ghost Echo Reverb, a vintage-inspired reverb pedal with true bypass, and the Hoof Fuzz pedal, which delivers high volumes with smooth, amp-like sustain. Another artist who relies on EarthQuaker effects is Omar Alfredo Rodríguez-López, a veteran of the Mars Volta and At the Drive-In who currently plays with Bosnian Rainbows. Omar's pick of the litter is the Rainbow Machine pitch shifter, which can make sounds that can't even be put into words—especially when you press the "magic" button.
No matter which of EarthQuaker Devices' many effects pedals you choose to take for a spin, you're bound to be impressed by the handcrafted quality and bold sounds of these boutique pedals. EarthQuaker even backs them up with a repair & replacement warranty that's good as long as they're still around, so if you ever need to send your pedal back in, they'll make sure you're taken care of. With reassurances like that, the only thing left to do is pick out your own EarthQuaker Devices effects pedal and get ready to rock.