With its lurid green graphic, Keeley’s Awful Waffle pedal looks like a Nickelodeon cartoon. But under that eyesore of a paint job you’ll find a rather handy treble booster circuit.
Ren & Stimpy
Robert Keeley must have been in an odd mood when he came up with the Awful Waffle pedal, as the look will likely put a lot of players off the pedal straight away. He even has the official demo video playing the Ren & Stimpy theme tune, which, again, may not inspire everyone to go out and buy this pedal.
On the other hand, there are Slime and Gak controls, which I kind of like, but which probably won’t be to everyone’s taste. Were the aesthetics borne out of an acid flashback? We’ll probably never know. But the look makes you want to slap him and say “You Eediot!” in a Ren-type voice.
The pedal itself is a classic Treble Booster based on the ever popular Dallas Rangemaster. Due to the transistor used, the pedal varies between soft and over-saturated, in combination with the mode lever. According to the manufacturer, the tones on offer here are “something between fuzz and cocked wah”.
I will say I have never got on with these type of circuits at low volume and have always found they like a really cranked amp, and I am not sure if this one will be any better. I have owned the not-so-out-there Keeley Java Boost in the past, which is also a treble booster based upon the OC44 Germanium circuit. But I always found that one far too clinical and ended up getting rid of it after a few gigs, as it was too tame for my tastes.
The Awful Waffle actually uses a National Semiconductor 2n3565 NPN, though, so should be very different to the Java Boost.
Treble boosters are a lot of fun, but you’ll need a place you can really play loud to really appreciate what they can do and so I think this one will have a very limited appeal. Just as well, given they are only making 30 pedals in total worldwide!
RRP $99 – limited to 30 pedals worldwide
Keeley Awful Waffle page