The Love Pedal
I have rarely come across a more silly name and I have rarely come across a better overdrive pedal. Simply one of the best around.
I have to say in the beginning the name really put me off, "Love Pedal" sounds like something from a porn movie. I don't know how they come up with such a name and equally I don't know how they make the thing sound so good. This is really something else. The name of this unit is called "Eternity". There is certainly nothing remarkable about its appearance. The casing is sliver and is slightly bigger than you standard pedal. The whole thing looks so square I nearly did not even bother to touch it.
One of the most difficult thing to find in any overdrive unit is transparency. If an overdrive unit has good transparency, you can still hear every single note when in overdrive mode ; each note will ring and remain musical despite being overdriven. The other thing equally difficult to find is that elusive "tube" sound, that warmth that are exclusive to overdriven tube amps. These are the two areas which set apart a US$100 unit and a US$250 unit.
The Eternity Love Pedal has so much warmth in it I was absolutely amazed. I just could not believe my ears. With the The single coil neck pick-up of a standard Strat sounded really warm and has this "tube" sound to it. And when cranked up, the single notes just scream without disintegrating. You can hear every note nice and clear in overdrive. And there is that distinct tube you hear that is associated exclusively with a overdrive tube amp. When I play a humbucker in the bridge position, the sound is just vintage overdrive sound. I have to say I have never come across an overdrive pedal that creates a better illusion of a tube overdrive sound.
The operation of the unit could not have been more simple. There are just three knows and a on/off footswitch. The "level" knob deals with the output, the "drive" knob determines the amount of overdrive. The third knob is called "glass". This is for tone control but it does not just trim the high end. If you turn the knob anti-clockwise, you are cutting the treble. The more treble you cut, the thick the sound and the warmer it gets. If you turn up the drive knob full and leave the glass know at around 12 o'clock, you get a great sound which is transparent yet thick and warm.
There is one thing though you might want to watch out. The Eternity Love Pedal is not a distortion pedal. It falls far short of distortion. You are not going to get that shredding sound on this unit, which means whatever you play on the guitar will come out loud and clear. If you have problems with your picking it will all come out loud and clear. If you have problems with timing, it will come out loud and clear. You cannot hide behind this pedal but this pedal will enhance your playing, it gives you just enough overdrive to make your guitar sound really good.
This overdrive pedal, I feel, is not an overdrive unit for beginners. For a start it costs much more than a Boss Blues Driver or an Ibanez Tubescreamer. A beginner might not be able to appreciate the subtle difference in overdrive sound. But this is a really good overdrive unit. If you are looking for a great tube sound, this is what you are looking for. When the thing first came out, they were asking for around US$250, but the price has gone down a fair bit. Make sure you try one out.
I played my first full gig with the Love Pedal on 17th Friday October. I was playing it through a couple of beat up and none-too-expensive guitar amps. During set up, my drummer Lawrence immediately noticed the difference after I played a few notes to check the tuning of my guitar. My bass player Alfred also thought it sounded really good. So even playing through a couple of cheap amps, the Love Pedal sounded good. Indeed it sounded really good throughout. The only one thing about it is this, the overdrive on the thing is sweet and fat but it is just a tiny bit, and I say again, a tiny bit short of that really heavy yet not distorted sound. You feel you need a bit more energy when you are really in high gear near the end of the show and you find that there is no more gain to be had on the pedal. What I did was I turn up the volume output of my Samson wireless to boost the signal to get that perfect drive. It worked. Maybe I should have stayed at that same level and work harder on the guitar, but I just felt I need the drive.
This first outing of the pedal really confirmed what I said. The pedal has great transparancy and has a real good "tube" sound. It will enhance your playing but you cannot hide behind it. It will also magnify all your playing imperfections. You just have to play good all the way through. You certainly cannot hide by turning up the gain button.