I was born in 1977. A year later, Reinhold Messner became the first human being to ascend Mt. Everest without the use of supplementary oxygen. Fast forward 37 years, and that brings us in a roundabout way to today’s pedal review. My buddy Colt and the boys and girls at Walrus Audio have created a low-gain, transparent overdrive that will make you feel as though you, too, have reached a peak of immense height and struggle. I’m talking about the new Messner Overdrive, people, let’s dig in.
Output, Color and Gain are the usual suspects on any given overdrive, and why shouldn’t they be? These three controls are just about all you need (minus the internal wiring, of course) to make up a rockin’ overdrive pedal, right? Well, in this particular case, Walrus Audio didn’t feel like that was enough, so they added a toggle switch for you to play with as well. In today’s competitive transparent market (see what I did there?), it’s almost become a necessity to make yourself stand out from the crowd, and an option-loaded toggle is just the way to do it.
This 2-way toggle may seem simple, and that’s because it is, but it really adds great sonic depth to the Messner, in ways that surprised me around every corner. Open/Closed are the options for your toggling pleasure, and that means that you can either incorporate or completely bypass the clipping diodes from the drive circuit, making for a boatload of options when mixing this toggle with the other three control knobs. The Open setting will give you a low-drive setting, adding a hint of overdrive to your tone, while Closed is a bit beefier, more compressed and heavier hitting than its counterpart. Both yield different sounds, and both will work in differing ways to add a little something to your rig.
Always innovating and taking it to the next level, Walrus Audio has once again upped the ante for the transparent overdrive world. Creating some excellent low-mid gain drive sounds, all the while not coloring your original tone in the least, the Messner Overdrive really gives you a vast array of sonic options to use in any musical setup. Thanks to our buddy Colt and all at Walrus Audio for allowing us to check out this little badass drive – as always, we look forward to what they’re coming out with next, but while we wait, make sure you check out their website for more awesome gear!
Submitted by Mike B, Website
Demo Rock pedalboard by West Coast Pedalboard