Best of Both Worlds: TSVG Slow Ride Fuzz Pedal

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TSVG Slow Ride Pedal

Don’t forget to check out The Tone King’s TSVG Slow Ride Pedal Video Below! 

One foot stands firm in classic tones while the other takes a step into wild new territory. A difficult balance to master, but that’s what TSVG Pedals is all about. The result is a small selection of pedals that are all carefully tuned to maintain that balance between the old school and the eclectic. Recently, TheToneKing.com got the chance to check out the Slow Ride Fuzz Pedal and talk it up with TSVG owner, Mike Klein, about what else TSVG has up its sleeve.

Since the beginning, TSVG had made it their goal to make the pedals that they want to make. Period. As Mike made clear during our interview, “We don’t want build what the market tells us to build. We build it because we think it sounds great.” To do that, TSVG focused their attention on Fuzz boxes, Distortion pedals, and overdrives. And, then pushed those as far as they could go. “I like pedals that break up and do weird things up to your tone.”

An acronym for Trolley Square Vintage Guitars, TSVG pedals have been built in the U.S. since day one. Mike Klein started TSVG Pedals in Trolley Square, Delaware in 2011. “We were buying guitars and amps, fixing them, and them selling them. I wanted to have a product that I could produce myself.” Mike made the move to pedals. With pedals, Mike has more control over all of the ingredients that would go into his products.

So, what ingredients go into a TSVG pedal?

Only the finest, sir. Only the finest.

AC128 Germanium PNP transistors are a good start. And those Mullard “Tropical Fish” capacitors always seem to get those pedal hounds salivating. Every pedal is hand built and hand wired. Hell, even the graphics on the casings are tip-top.

Then, there’s the whole grounding thing. “I like the sound of a positively ground fuzz over a negatively ground fuzz,” Mike explains. Even though he admits that pedals want to be negatively grounded, sometimes it’s best not to give those pedals everything they want. “There’s a halo that comes through with positively grounded fuzzes that you can’t get with negatively grounded pedals.” That small detail is just one of the things that helps give TSVG pedals their unique tone.

To satisfy those negative grounding purists, however, future TSVG pedals will include a polarity switch to make sure that your TSVG pedal will play nice and share a power supply with those negatively grounded pedals on your pedalboard.

Every TSVG Pedal up to this point has been point-to-point wiring. That is going to change this year. TSVG will be making the move to custom Printed Circuit Boards. Why the change? Well, first there’s the insane number of orders TSVG has been getting lately. And, printed Circuit Boards usually offer more consistency than point-to-point can.

Even though the people behind TSVG are always looking for eclectic new sounds, they’re still fans of those classic tones. Crafting their pedals, they always start the process by dusting off some of those old school pedals that they grew up with. “My partner, Yamil is a pedal junkie. He’s been collecting pedals since he was a little kid.” After going through countless classic pedals, they’ll hone in on the sounds they’re looking for. Then, they figure out how they’re going to push it to the next level. “We try to take those classic sounds that people have been hearing forever and put our own twist on it.”

Line 6

The Dying Batt, for example, is a classic sounding fuzz that breaks up your tone enough to give you some Hendrix or Sabbath sounds. But, if you’re really looking for something different, the Dying Batt has a 9V regulator that can choke the shit out of your sound when combined with the tone blend control. “It starts to do really weird things and clipping in all these weird places. It’s something completely different.”

After their first year, TSVG did summer NAMM, and that’s when things really started to pick up. You know how it goes. Once one player gets an earful of something cool, he’s gotta tell all of his damn friends about it. Which is a good thing, right? Word of mouth is what keeps quality companies like TSVG going. And, word of mouth about TSVG has been pretty loud so far.

That being said, nothing says TSVG like the Slow Ride Fuzz Pedal. While TSVG’s biggest seller can give you a simple fuzz, the Slow Ride is anything but simple. Because of the sensitivity of the gain, the Slow Ride can act as an overdrive, an all out fuzz, and anything in between. The Slow Ride has probably the most unique and useful range of gain that we have seen in any fuzz pedal. “Depending on where you have the gain control… Bring it all the way back, it’s going to be a think overdriven chunky tone. And, as your roll up the gain, it just fuzzes out.”

Versatile gain is just the start.

There’s a switch on the pedal that changes the bass response of the Slow Ride. Switching between two different input capacitors, one large and one small, players can move between a brighter or darker range of tones.

“I personally like the pedal because of the sustain.” Mike was referring to the many metric tons of sustain that the Slow Ride will pour over your ears.

At TheToneKing.com we also liked the Slow Ride as a distortion pedal. The attack is sharp when the gain knob is rolled back and softens up the more you gain that’s added. The Slow Ride is definitely one of the most dynamic fuzz pedals that we’ve heard.

TSVG is still a young company, but their pedals have been making a lot of noise. Some would say that coming up with innovative new sounds while still maintaining those classic tones is almost impossible. But, the word on the street is that TSVG is doing exactly that. And, from what we here at TheToneKing.com can tell from their Slow Ride Fuzz Pedal, that word on the street is legit.

Check out the full video below! 

[youtuber youtube=’http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6VNKVprBobw’]

 

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About the Author: Marc published his first novel Becoming in 2010. It’s a kick-ass book with monsters and dreams and stuff, and you should buy it. Since then, he’s written thousands of articles for TheToneKing.com, many of which have been picked up for circulation by manufacturers and other news outlets. His next book, Drugs and Pancakes, should be available early 2014 if his alcoholic editor can find time to work on it in-between destroying his liver and screaming about punctuation. He graduated from Roosevelt University with honors, which means that he’s not as dumb as he looks. He’s been playing guitar for over 25 years, which is almost twice as long as most of his students have been alive.

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