#1
Hi there,

Starting a new band which is all very exciting as I'm writing new tunes etc.

Need help with one track (sorry- no recordings yet)

There are cleanish chords for the verses with a big deep distortion for the chorus. However, when I go distorted it seems a bit too 'sudden'.

It will be a 3 piece band, so I can't afford not to have a huge distortion to fill out the heavy chorus.

I am using a Boss ME-50 at the moment.

Would it be sensible to buy a separate crunch / overdrive pedal to have a light crunch sound instead of a completely clean verse so the change isn't so dramatic?

Any tips welcome!
#2
Here's a tip, the volume knob on your guitar can control distortion better than it actually controls volume. Drop the volume back on the verses and you'll find your tone cleans up dramatically. Then all you need to do it roll it up to bring the thunder
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#3
Thanks Paddy-

I don't think it's a volume issue (this can be handled either on my guitar or using my expression pedal)......

Hard to explain but the song goes:


Nice-and-clean-and-nice-and-clean-and-nice-and-clean-and-nice-and-clean-and-RRRRRAAAARRRRR!!!

So it's a bit weird.... I'd rather that there was a more fluid, natural transition.

I'm rubbish at explaining things.
#4
hes not saying its a volume issue turning the volume knob on your guitar down doesn't really change the volume that much but it will turn down your distortion. try it and you will see what hes talking about
#5
What Paddy Mck means is that the volume control on many guitars will alter the tone more than the overall volume, as it alters the capacitance in the signal chain, usually knocking off a lot of the top end and gain as you roll it back (though some of the top manufacturers work around this on their guitars, but in some ways it's a preference thing). Then you could clean up the sound a little for the verses - downside is that you do lose the high end quite dramatically and get a very bass-heavy tone, so for chords ringing out it may not be ideal.

I'd say it's a better idea to work into the arrangement some build-up at the end of the verses that leads into the heavier choruses (drummer building up on toms and snare, guitar getting crunchy and following that tom/snare rhythm for last few beats before going full-on etc.). You don't have to worry too much about it - not my kind of music typically, but Radiohead are masters of the clean-buildup-heavier chorus formula, and if it's more of a rock-type thing you're after, Nirvana (another band I can't stand for very long, what is with me suggesting these people today?!) definitely helped popularise the clean verse, distorted chorus arrangement.
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#6
Oh so you are suggesting that I have my distortion channel on throughout but turn it down through the verses?! I get it now. Will give it a try. Thanks!

Yet another technique I will have to learn- using volume control mid-song!
#7
Quote by DisarmGoliath


I'd say it's a better idea to work into the arrangement some build-up at the end of the verses that leads into the heavier choruses (drummer building up on toms and snare, guitar getting crunchy and following that tom/snare rhythm for last few beats before going full-on etc.).


This is an excellent point. To give you some context, I am sitting at home playing via headphones plugged into my Boss ME50.

I am getting ahead of myself and haven't even yet considered the impact of drum dynamics or even bass pedal tones.
#8
I second the point about the altering the arrangements to facilitate a build-up. As far as simple things on the guitar itself go, you could always kick the distortion on a little early and use a big slide (WEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEW RAAAAAAAAAAAAWR) or strum muted strings (CHUNKA CHUNKA CHUNKA RAAAAAAAAAAWR) to add to the build-up and smooth the transition out. Happy playing lol.
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#9
If you've got the money, I would invest in an MT-2 from Boss.
If not, yeah just go with the volume. I don't know what kind of music you're playing, but I'm sure it'll be effective regardless to have the whole song on distortion and crank up the volume for hitting more accented, staccato style notes.
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#10
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If you've got the money, I would invest in an MT-2 from Boss.
If not, yeah just go with the volume. I don't know what kind of music you're playing, but I'm sure it'll be effective regardless to have the whole song on distortion and crank up the volume for hitting more accented, staccato style notes.

Christ no, it's a terrible pedal
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#11
It's hard to find a decent sound, but once you do it's pretty solid.
Especially since you can get a pretty wide range of textures, except maybe bluesy fir solos. All I really need to play - when it comes to distortion - is the MT-2 and Blues Driver also from Boss.
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#12
A pretty simple thing that seems to work is leave like, a bar or so before the chorus, kick in your distortion and try some muted string strumming... If that makes sense?

Kinda getting that 'whacka whacka' sound before the bug explosive chords.

Listen to Broken Wings by Alter Bridge. That kinda thing?
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#13
Thanks everyone for the replies.

I will take this all on board. Got down the first track last night which was easy because it was all distorted.

Will let everyone know how I get on with the quiet, loud, quiet songs....
#14
Quote by MickAlmighty
A pretty simple thing that seems to work is leave like, a bar or so before the chorus, kick in your distortion and try some muted string strumming... If that makes sense?

Kinda getting that 'whacka whacka' sound before the bug explosive chords.

Listen to Broken Wings by Alter Bridge. That kinda thing?


That's a very good idea.
Listen to some Mudvayne, also. 'Happy?' should be one of the best for that.
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#15
Quote by MickAlmighty


Listen to Broken Wings by Alter Bridge. That kinda thing?


Thanks for the suggestion! Good idea.


Never listened to this band before. Probably won't again tbh.
#16
Woah now!

I'm here trying to help you out here! No need to rag on AB
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#17
Quote by SuperKillie
Hi there,

Starting a new band which is all very exciting as I'm writing new tunes etc.

Need help with one track (sorry- no recordings yet)

There are cleanish chords for the verses with a big deep distortion for the chorus. However, when I go distorted it seems a bit too 'sudden'.

It will be a 3 piece band, so I can't afford not to have a huge distortion to fill out the heavy chorus.

I am using a Boss ME-50 at the moment.

Would it be sensible to buy a separate crunch / overdrive pedal to have a light crunch sound instead of a completely clean verse so the change isn't so dramatic?

Any tips welcome!



I use a boss me-50 and what I have done is made my own custom presets so I can switch between rhythm distortion, clean, and solo tones. Also if I need just a little bit of distortion reduced I will be the volume knob on my guitar, I haven't really used it much in the past but starting to use it now lets me let those AC/DC kind of distortion open chords ring out better and more clearly without distortion on full whack.