Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Heaven Sent

I am always surprised and blown away whenever I mention the Holy Fire to someone and they haven't heard of it. This isn't necessarily a brand spankin' new pedal, but what it sports under it's hood sure is. I had first learned of Creation Audio Labs through some studio rat buddies of mine. Because of the pedal boom that was going on at first I thought it was going to be nothing but a bunch of hype. Hype there was non! The stompbox world has never seen a design quite like this, and the result has turned out to be one of the most versatile, organic, and spot-on overdrivers to come along in a very long time.

Holy Fire

Gain Knob: Controls gain amount
Overdrive Knob: Controls overdrive amount
Distortion: True distortion square wave/From low to 100% distortion clipping
Filter Knob: Works as a high cut/10hz-20k

Voltage: 48 volts
50's/60's: Analog computer technology for wave shaping
LED: Interactive LED


Now some of this might be familiar to you and some of this may not. Of course we all know what a Gain, Drive, Overdrive, and EQ knob does on a stompbox. But believe me when I say this, you have never ever experienced anything like this pedal. The designers of this pedal took 1950's and early 1960's analog computer technology and computer technology to shape the sound waves this pedal produces. The outcome is the most tube-like sounding pedal to ever land in a stompbox, a true tube emulator. The combination of the Holy Fire's controls blend together to create the most musical overdrive and distortion I have come across in a long long time. I must tip my hat to the designers of this badboy and say this is surely one of those pedals that will become an all time favorite and collector's item in years to come. I began like I do with all drive pedals, I set everything at noon to see how things sound. Right form the get-go this pedal sounded so good I was stuck playing riffs with everything at noon for about 25 minutes. Taking the Gain control I set my overall level and dove in. With the Overdrive knob I alone I was able to get a wide range of drive sounds, from subtle classic rock tones to killer lead tones. The OD controls really does one hell of a job at producing really level overdrive, the kind of overdrive that holds together no matter how hard to strike your strings, very very nice I must say. Now here is where this pedal separates itself from the rest. Add in the Distortion knob and you're on a whole new level, there is a creamy, smooth, and extremely defined quality to this pedal's drive that will put your TS-808's to shame, that's right I just said that. The distortion tone is thick, fat, and in your face, a professional sound you will appreciate and admire. It doesn't end there with the distortion knob either, once you pass a certain level you hear it compress and hit a level of distortion that is absolutely beautiful, clipping from the heavens. Your level will become quieter but a quick twist of the Gain knob will fix that, believe me there is plenty of gain to go around. Because of this you can play your hardcore distortion tones at any level, I was chucking away Eddie Van Halen tones at 2am with no hassle from the grumpy old man that lives next door. That makes for some killer recording tones. The High Cut knob was an absolute cherry on top, matching this pedal to your amp has never been so easy, matching to pedals is just as easy, and we know how much a pain in the ass it is when we find two pedals that sound great but can't get to sound good together. Combine all of this with 48 volts of ass kicking power and you have one baddass pedal. I did an experiment with pedal that consisted of me replacing my booster, overdrive and distortion pedals with the Holy Fire. I took it to all my practices and gigs for a while to see if I would be able to work all my tones with just one pedal. The outcome? Great drive, great boost, and heavenly distortion sounds. As a booster it is stunning, it stays 100% transparent, other than your level getting louder you really can't hear a difference in your tone. To get my drive and dist tones I set the pedal at my lead tone. Then I rolled back my guitars volume to find the perfect grit and overdrive. I swept back and fourth and was amazed to hear how well balanced the eq of my amp and guitar had stayed. No matter where I set the pedal it was damn near impossible to get to sound bad. Whether you play humbuckers, single coils, or P90's, this pedal will deliver and do it damn well. There is a size to this pedal's tone that pushes through any mix and makes for some killer recording sessions. The Holy Fire was able to dial-in just about every genre of overdrive and distortion known to man, from the birth of overdrive to the freakish limits of killer distortion, and everything in between. If you play a Fender amp (like I do) this is the perfect amp, cats that rely on stompboxes for their drive and grit will absolutely fall in love with this amazing pedal. It is always a pleasure whenever I get to introduce something this special to players. As players we are always hunting for those tools that will make our job easier, or tones greater, or playing more fun. In the end it's all about finding that piece of equipment that will separate you from the rest and bring the beginning's of your signature tone. The Holy Fire lives in that realm and unleashes pure un-cut passion, motivation, and drive. It doesn't get better than that.

For more info on Creation Audio Labs products go to www.creationaudiolabs.com or click their logo in our links. Keep on rocking and look for more products from Creation Audio Labs to come soon. Peace!!!

1 comment:

  1. my sentiments exactly! and since they went to direct sales last fall, the price has dropped about a hundred bucks!