The good people of EBS Sweden are now bringing a healthy dose of fuzz to the bassist’s toolbox.
The EBS FuzzMo (current price in Finland: 169,90 €) is a fuzz-type high gain distortion developed especially for bass.
This stompbox is made in China to the EBS’ exacting standards. It’s a sturdy pedal with very positive feeling controls.
The FuzzMo can be powered in three ways:
If you use an EBS amp from the Drome-, Gorm-, HD- or TD-series, you can use a TRS-cable (aka a stereo cable) to feed phantom power from the amp to the effect pedal.
The FuzzMo pedal also runs off a standard 9 V battery, but you will need a screwdriver to take off the base plate first.
The third alternative is to employ a Boss-type power supply (9 V DC, centre negative) to fire up the stompbox.
Even though the EBS FuzzMo looks somewhat similar to the company’s Billy Sheehan -pedal, the controls on the fuzz work in a different way.
The FuzzMo doesn’t do ”nice and sweet” – the Gain control offers fuzz from medium-crunchy to balls-to-the-wall-fuzz. Shape adjusts the tone of the fuzz effect – not in the way a traditional tone control does, but rather by changing the waveform of the fuzz signal. At seven o’clock the sound is quite warm and organic with the waveform approaching a square, while five o’clock is far brighter and more aggressive with the waveform resembling a triangle.
The mini-switch underneath the FuzzMo-logo (called Character) also plays an important part in the stompbox’ sound:
Switched to the left no EQ’ing is applied to the signal (FLAT). In the middle position there’s a slight attenuation of the mid-range. SCOOP on the right side results in a very Metal-style scooped-mid tone with plenty of bite.
Modern bass effects often split the bass signal at the input. One half is fed through the effect, while the other half is kept dry and mixed into the wet signal before it reaches the output. The advantage of doing things this way is that it enables you to keep your bottom end and dynamic attack intact.
This is just the way EBS’ FuzzMo works, too:
You use the Volume knob to adjust the fuzz signal’s volume level, and then use the Blend control to add the desired amount of dry bass. This feature is especially important in fuzz pedals for bass, because the hard clipping of a fuzz effect practically negates all your playing dynamics by design. With the FuzzMo there will be no problems with your tone becoming mushy, clogged up and indistinct, because the Blend control lets you restore your bass guitar’s punch and low end.
Here’s a bit recorded with a Jazz Bass (both pickups on) and a relatively low Gain setting:
In this clip I added some more fuzz and bite to a Rickenbacker played with a plectrum:
Thanks to the ability to blend in the dry signal, the EBS FuzzMo also works extremely well with a five-string (in this case a Yamaha BB with active EMGs):
Note that on all these audio clips the Gain control stayed below one o’clock. If you want you can take things much, much further with this EBS-pedal!
The FuzzMo is a typical EBS-pedal – it’s a sturdy, pro-quality stompbox and it sounds great. If you’re a purveyor of sleazy, dirty and aggressive bass tones, you should definitely give this baby a spin!
EBS Sweden FuzzMo
Finnish distributor: F-Musiikki
+ build quality
+ can be powered in three ways
+ sound optimised for bass
+ three-way EQ-switch
+ Blend control
+ offers a lot of gain
– no quick access to battery