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Thread: What is it with guitar players and too much distortion?

  1. #21
    Cream Crackered Mikegarveyblues's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by alantig View Post
    What is this 'too much distortion'? Can you put that in English terms?



    Must not comment....must not comment...please never mention that first pedal in this context again, I'm cramping up over here!
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  2. #22
    Senior Member gush's Avatar
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    Right on boogie! When I see a guitar player wheel in a full stack at a bar I automaticlly think crap tone and too much volume.

    I do find that patches I create at home live in a seperate bank to play with live till they are right. Then I can put them where I need them.

  3. #23
    Opaque John Beef's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by alantig View Post
    Must not comment....must not comment...please never mention that first pedal in this context again, I'm cramping up over here!
    Hahaha! You guys are talking about my wife's Big Muff? She's actually rocking the Little Big Muff these days. She uses her Big Muff sparingly, and I wish she'd use it more, because when she does the whole room shakes and everyone smiles. It's awesome and I love it. Even the drummer noticed how awesome her Big Muff is.
    The Bovine Fury <-- stream and download our album "Eleven by Twelve" for free.
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  4. #24
    Pincher of Harmonics Blackbird's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Beef View Post
    Hahaha! You guys are talking about my wife's Big Muff? She's actually rocking the Little Big Muff these days. She uses her Big Muff sparingly, and I wish she'd use it more, because when she does the whole room shakes and everyone smiles. It's awesome and I love it. Even the drummer noticed how awesome her Big Muff is.
    12 408 - 12 DGT - 09 Tremonti II - 98 CU24 - 97 CE22 - Mesa MarkIV - Kemper Profiler Amp - EVH 5150 III - PRS Archon

  5. #25
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    I don't know. Interestingly (to me), the most popular cover bands around here seem not to pay too much attention to the details of tone relative to how accurate it is for a given song. The common denominator for "popular" seems to be song selection, vocals (particularly good harmonies), venue appropriate volume, and tightness as a group. I don't think that the audience gives a second thought to how much distortion a guitarist is using so long as it isn't too loud. People that haunt this sort of forum (including me) care about it....but we're geeks that way. 99 percent of the audience aren't musicians...they are just looking to have a good time dancing to tight music (that they are familiar with) with good vocals. I sort of like it that way since I'm no great shakes as a guitarist, but as a band, we're pretty good I think. I don't tend to use a bunch of gain, but that's mainly because the material that we do doesn't require it usually, and I don't need to use it as a crutch since we just don't do songs that we're not good enough to play. Plenty of reasonable songs out there for a coverband that don't require you to be Yngvie Malmsteen (and usually, the audience doesn't like to super technical stuff anyway...)

  6. #26
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    The thing is that bad guitar tones do bother the audience but they won't necessarily be able to articulate it in that way. They certainly don't care if you're using a Strat to play Back in Black or a Les Paul to play Sultans of Swing but if the tones are making the band "loose" because of too much delay or the guitars are so piercing (not loud) and brittle then people do get annoyed. I've watched people leave before because they thought the band sucked when the band actually played quite well - they just sounded bad.
    You're never too old for tater tots.

  7. #27
    Still a Junior Member Albrecht Smuten's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hippietim View Post
    He only used one setting - it was probably labeled Brutalz or something.
    Yes, that's it. I use it exclusively - singing guitar players shouldn't be expected to play without mistakes, that's where the heavy distortion comes into play.
    Besides, every band member has his job:

    Keyboard and bass: Music
    Guitar and drums: Hell

    Now I go bury myself in the ground, reserved for immature wannabe rockstars
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  8. #28
    Almost was a FG22 owner.. WEDGE's Avatar
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    I am guilty of this, I LOVE GAIN! Of course I play mostly alone at home so it fills out the spectrum of what I want to hear. I am sure if I ever get to play with others again I would have to dial back my gain level and adjust tone to suit.

    Now I do love bands that take songs and 'heavy' them up, but agree too much is not a good thing.
    ​Secretary of Crackwood Addiction

  9. #29
    Quote Originally Posted by hippietim View Post
    The thing is that bad guitar tones do bother the audience but they won't necessarily be able to articulate it in that way. They certainly don't care if you're using a Strat to play Back in Black or a Les Paul to play Sultans of Swing but if the tones are making the band "loose" because of too much delay or the guitars are so piercing (not loud) and brittle then people do get annoyed. I've watched people leave before because they thought the band sucked when the band actually played quite well - they just sounded bad.
    Exactly. People may not be able to articulate what they don't like about a band, but if it sounds good, how can that be a bad thing?
    If something is too hard to do, then it's not worth doing. You just stick that guitar in the closet next to your short-wave radio, your karate outfit and your unicycle and we'll go inside and watch TV.
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  10. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by WEDGE View Post
    I am guilty of this, I LOVE GAIN! Of course I play mostly alone at home so it fills out the spectrum of what I want to hear. I am sure if I ever get to play with others again I would have to dial back my gain level and adjust tone to suit.

    Now I do love bands that take songs and 'heavy' them up, but agree too much is not a good thing.
    Distortion does not equate to heavy though. In fact, a lot of heavy bands use far less distortion than a lot of not so heavy bands because the heavy bands want tight articulation and focus. Too much distortion actually gets you the opposite of heavy - it gets you mushy.
    You're never too old for tater tots.

  11. #31
    Quote Originally Posted by Shawn@PRS View Post
    Remind me to cross off the following names from the guest list of my next gig.
    Hippie Tim
    John Beff
    Fox 77
    Les Schefman



    LOL !!


    Just to be clear: I'm guilty of using too much gain as well haha
    Alex

  12. #32
    Feast like a sultan, I do QueenCityGuitars's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hippietim View Post
    Distortion does not equate to heavy though. In fact, a lot of heavy bands use far less distortion than a lot of not so heavy bands because the heavy bands want tight articulation and focus. Too much distortion actually gets you the opposite of heavy - it gets you mushy.
    IMO, "heavy" is a vibe. Pink Floyd is heavy because they breach into weighty subject material. To me, too much compressed distortion gets you mushy. Just my $0.02.

  13. #33
    SuperD Boogie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by aristotle View Post
    I don't know. Interestingly (to me), the most popular cover bands around here seem not to pay too much attention to the details of tone relative to how accurate it is for a given song. The common denominator for "popular" seems to be song selection, vocals (particularly good harmonies), venue appropriate volume, and tightness as a group. I don't think that the audience gives a second thought to how much distortion a guitarist is using so long as it isn't too loud.
    That's pretty accurate, generally. But personally, I strive for overall tone and appropriate crunch (or lack thereof) for the song, not necessarily the accuracy of the tone for the song. Like you said, the crowd doesn't really care, so it's for me at that point. And if I think I sound good, I'll play with more confidence, and probably better and more creatively. Besides, after all I've spent in amps, guitars, pedals, misc. gear and sweat, it would be nice to reap a little rock vibe at a show.

  14. #34
    Sounds like failure to...
    "Dial in the tone stack to a more musical place"
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  15. #35
    aka McCartyman altoidman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MA Pete View Post
    The problem with your above theory is that with 5708's and 5909's, you can always hear every note, no matter how much gain you have!!
    +1

  16. #36
    Senior Member jfb's Avatar
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    It seems I am always using less and less gain. Right now my main amp is a Bogner Uberschall Twin Jet. I am generally on channel one because channel two is insanity. Even as a metal head channel one with gain on about 8 is enough. When I'm on channel two the gain is set around 5.
    Plank Owner

  17. #37
    Opaque John Beef's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jfb View Post
    It seems I am always using less and less gain. Right now my main amp is a Bogner Uberschall Twin Jet. I am generally on channel one because channel two is insanity. Even as a metal head channel one with gain on about 8 is enough. When I'm on channel two the gain is set around 5.
    Wow, I played one of those once, at a low volume in a store, and had to put the channel two gain around 1 or maybe even 1/2, barely enough to get any signal through, and I'm a hard rock player. I couldn't believe anyone would ever use that much distortion (and still sound good)!
    The Bovine Fury <-- stream and download our album "Eleven by Twelve" for free.
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