US-based maker of boutique pedals Hungry Robot is a fairly new outfit, established in 2012. They make some really interesting pedals often with really cool looking graphics. This year sees the company releasing two new models aimed squarely at what they call “ambient” guitar players who are into big, ethereal sounds like reverb and delay.
First up is ‘The Wash’, described by its maker as a “new chapter in the world of delays”. It uses internal feedback loops to achieve its sounds. The design is based upon a way of simulating a stack of many reverb and delay pedals, which is how some ambient players are getting their ‘wash’ sounds.
The pedal has 1000ms of maximum delay time and can either be used as a straight delay or you can feed that into the wash circuit. This is triggered by the right footswitch, and is what HR are touting as the “stand out” feature compared to other delays on the market. The Wash circuit adds reverb to the signal and uses a complicated network of internal feedback loops. The Ripple knob controls an effect which HR describes as scattering each successive delay trail and transforming it into reverb. The Resonance knob is used fine-tune the resonance and decay of the wash. The Middle knob controls the mix/wetness of the wash.
The Wash – RRP USD $250
Next up is the Kármán Line which is a delay pedal featuring a joystick for easy tweaking. This is fully digital but is trying to emulate the Boss DM-2 analogue delay. Each subsequent echo takes on a darker tonal quality and the whole unit can be made to self-oscillate. It also boasts LFO driven, analogue modulation for vinyl-like warping.
The Y-Axis of the joystick changes the delay time (up to 1000ms) and the X-Axis controls the modulation rate. The effect is designed to add audible warping as you move the joystick, in theory offering you some very novel results. The right-hand footswitch is called the “Launch” switch. When you turn this on, it “automatically overloads the circuit with out-of-control ramping oscillation”. This can be tamed using the secondary mix knob.
On paper, both pedals sound like they should be a lot of fun. However, at the time of writing there are no audio demos of either unit, and we currently only have Hungry Robot’s descriptions to go on. Both should be available later this year. These are two pedals I’ll be keeping an eye out for in 2016. If they live up to the hype then they should be especially interesting for the ‘Post-Rock’ crowd.
The Kármán Line – RRP USD $250
- Company Site