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Review

3Leaf Doom Pedal

Issue #48

If you're an adventurous type, this is definitely one to check out, even of what it actually does is hard to describe in words.
Dan Veall

 

Pros:

All analogue
Boutique
Great for making your bass sound more like a synth

Cons:

Can't think of any!

3Leaf Doom Fuzz Pedal

Bassments? Pedals named 'Doom'? This can only call for Dan Veall...

There is some confusion about this wonderfully named pedal. It's made by Spencer Doren's 3Leaf Audio from Seattle in the USA and, as far as I can tell, it's the weirdly named 'You’re Doom Dynamic Harmonic Device’ given a new tag which perhaps makes a bit more sense, or is maybe a bit more descriptive. Anyway, it's a very nicely made boutique pedal from an interesting small company, so what is it all about then? I’m going to go with Spencer’s own description as that pretty much sums it up. He says: 'Doom is a unique device. It sounds like a cross between fuzz, a ring modulator and an octave-up.' So, there!

 


Four controls and a switch on the top panel of the pedal could suggest to you that this unit is only capable of one flavour of sounds, but even from my fairly simple video, it’s obvious from the get-go that it can create everything from some mild crunchy tones to massively sustaining synth-like filtered face-melters. Take a listen to my video as it’s far easier to demonstrate than describe some of these superb sounds from the sublime to the almost ridiculous - and the latter I do love!

In the top left hand corner, the Volume control governs the amplitude of the fuzz signal and to the right of that, the all important (for us bassists) Mix control allows a nice blend of your natural bass guitar tone to come through, which could of course include any effect’s sound applied before Doom that hasn’t yet been smashed by the drive circuit in the pedal. As a suggestion in the manual, you can pull back the tone control on your bass which seems to affect the clean signal more than the driven tone from Doom, which is a great way to blend in some deeper low end but retain bite from Doom’s gritty side.

Bottom left hand corner, the Gain knob governs the amount drive saturation. The lowest settings are of course more mild but have a really nice character to them, but as the dial is progressed around clockwise and that’s the last time I’d use the word ‘nice’ to describe the sound! The fuzz goodness is fed in until the signal is aggressive and in your face. It is however possible to tame this beast even on higher gain settings by use of the 2-pole low pass filter Tone knob. According to 3Leaf, the Tone knob is similar to that found in a vintage synthesiser and it works in reverse, hence the effect seen in my video: clockwise operation decreases the upper harmonics.

Finally, further sculpting of your skull-smashing bass girth is available via the Shape switch. The frequency curve is adjusted in the down position, with a wide scoop in the midrange and a slope away for the deep bass end. In the up position the fuzz is described as having a flatter character and of course you’ll get more in the way of midrange bite.

Even just by flicking the switch over, you have access to a sound that will ‘sit back’ in the mix a little becoming part of a core sound. Flick the switch the other way and you bring the midrange back in to punch a hole in the band mix for some series bass assault!

The pedal is rock solid and I’ve found that even in the most extreme settings there are still plenty of sounds that are usable. I loved the ’gainy’ settings and also being able to shape the sound easily. Had we have had one around in the studio when I was playing with the Doom pedal, I would have definitely tried it with an octave down pedal for some proper low end thunder - now that would have been fun!

If you're an adventurous type, this is definitely one to check out, even of what it actually does is hard to describe in words (thank heaven we have video - Ed!). Check one out!

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Issue #49

Andy Timmons

Out Now

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