Darling Devil Distortion review by Lovepedal

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  • Sound: 10
  • Overall Impression: 10
  • Reliability & Durability: 10
  • Ease of Use: 10
  • Reviewer's score: 10 Gem
  • Users' score: 10 (1 vote)
Lovepedal: Darling Devil Distortion
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Price paid: $ 250

Purchased from: www.lovepedal.com

Sound — 10
HIGH GAIN. This pedal reminds me A LOT of a Soldano Avenger I was playing on last week (and that's pretty impressive to me considering I'm playing the pedal through a Peavey Classic 30 combo). I don't know if Sean was playing thrash music while he designed this thing but that idea took a firm grip. The volume knob is nothing special, but it has a little bit of room past unity gain to boost your amp a good bit. The fat/thin knob sort of goes between fat and thin. But it honestly feels like more of an exaggerated tone knob. Almost like there's a low pass filter from 0-45%, and then a bit of a treble boost (and slight low end cut) from 45-100%. I'm not really sure the knob should carry the different designation. Some pedals loved to be turned up, some love to be dialed back, but this pedal has a firm sweet spot for me. Right at 10 o'clock on the gain knob this pedal is amazing. The Pick attack is immediate and biting, the gain does a great impression of a buzz-saw and the low end remains tight and focused. At this setting it has a very nice percussive kick. Turn the gain any lower and it starts to feel like the pedal is being choked off. Turn the gain higher and the saturation increases moderately, but mostly you get just a little more crunch, a lot more feedback and the low end gets just the smallest, insignificant amount of squish. But the greatest part for me is that it doesn't sound unnaturally distorted. It doesn't sound digital like a lot of modern distortions do. If I had to say that this pedal speaks a language I would say it would be fluent early Metallica. It's a distortion box with some great and ripping distortion, a 10 for me.

Overall Impression — 10
This pedal does exactly what I'd hoped it would and so much more. I'd thought that this thing would sound more like a beefed up COT from the clip Sean put up, but it has it's own voice. The name fits the pedal. The graphic on the front is great as well (it looks like a little devil trapped in a cage to me), and the sparkle red/black paint job (which was so fresh I could smell the paint when I opened the box) looks killer. I hope to God this never breaks or gets stolen. I'd have to beg and plead with Sean to make me another one!

Reliability & Durability — 10
Everything Sean builds (including the mass produced pedals) are always very durable and reliable. I've owned a couple of handfuls of lovepedals and never once have I had an issue. I foresee none for this pedal either, but I got one from the very first batch (that's why I only paid $250 for mine; shortly after I ordered it I found out it was taking Sean a lot longer than he'd thought to build them, I believe that's why he raised the price to $350).

Ease of Use — 10
This pedal is part of a 'custom shop run' that Sean has been doing for a couple of months now. It's a distortion box that has, by far, the most gain I've ever heard from any Lovepedal. Seldom does Sean write detailed descriptions of his pedals. Usually all you'll get is a teaser clip on youtube and one or two sentences. Anyway. The pedal has the standard volume and gain controls, but the tone knob is labeled 'fat/thin' on the 'manual' (it's a single sheet of paper with a shadowy representation of the pedal; the three knobs are darker and there simply the words master volume, fat/thin, and gain labeled around them. But hey, three knobs are killer easy to work with.

4 comments sorted by best / new / date

    v2a2n2g2
    That's really expensive, are these handmade or something? Don't think i've ever seen a metal dist that costs that much (besides SD's Tube Mayhem)
    Strangeman86
    Yeah, Sean hand made this bunch. I'm glad I caught it while it was only $250, I honestly wouldn't have paid $350 for a stomp box. However, I still love it!
    AcousticMirror
    v2a2n2g2 wrote: That's really expensive, are these handmade or something? Don't think i've ever seen a metal dist that costs that much (besides SD's Tube Mayhem)
    you're not looking hard enough man. There are 300-400 pedals all over the place. Strangeman have you played this against a zvex box of rock or anything similar?
    Strangeman86
    No, unfortunately I've never been able to get my hands on a BOR. I can really only compare this to the COT pedals in my head because I haven't owned very many distortion boxes (traditionally I'm a guitar, cable, amp guy). Obviously, the COT pedals don't come close to this thing gain wise. This thing probably has enough gain to split between about four COT's. But the best tonal description I can give is still the soldano avenger reference. Or maybe a less fizzy, really excellent sounding mesa.