I own a Fender Hot Rod deluxe white lightning. It has great tone for rhythm play, but not lead. Lots of fuzz in the distortion, very bluesy. is there anything i could do to limit this and give it a bit more of a metal styled lead sound, with less breakup? perhaps new tubes, or would a drive pedal help? thanks.
Its a fender hot rod. Its designed for blues/classic rock tones. Your best bet for a "metal-style" lead tone is going to be a pretty hefty distortion box. There are a bunch. My friend seems to be very pleased with his Radial Tonebone Hot British pedal.
The situation you've described is the greatest and worst thing about Fender amps. They sounds glorious clean or with a little break up, but driven hard they are pitiful.