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Tone Tour | Kevin Ray of Walk the Moon
Walk The Moon bassist Kevin Ray stopped by the Chicago Music Exchange to talk tone! Kevin walks us through his pedal board, loaded with Earthquaker Devices effects, talking about how he likes to use each effect and their impact on the recording of their "What If Nothing" Album.
My name is Kevin Ray and I played bass in a band called Walk the Moon.
I feel like I'm still just hacking away at the tip of the iceberg when it comes to Earthquaker stuff. The first Earthquaker pedal on the board is the Hoof Reaper. I like the Hoof Fuzz it’s really, really intense and it cuts like crazy. So, there's a song we have called “Kamikaze,” where at the beginning I do a little kind of whoopy swell with with the Moogerfooger low pass and I've got the Hoof Reaper on top and it just cuts like crazy. The Hoof goes on top of the Brimstone Audio crossover distortion. So, the signal chain wise its Hoof first into the Crossover and then it runs to the Moog and I've got this little expression pedal.
And then later on in the song I bring in my Four Wheeler fuzz the JHS Four Wheeler. But even in that “Kamikaze” song that Four Wheeler comes in later instead of the Hoof to give that sort of the opposite texture to get out of the way of everything but still have some massive low end and some shiny fuzz and that kind of sounds like.
The only other one I have on here right now is the Afterneath. I use it on a song called “All I want”. We kind of have this extended solo jam session live and the aim is to just kind of create a lot of atmosphere and that's great for the Afterneath.
What's nice is you can give it that initial sound and then kind of pepper in stuff on top. For instance I'll fire the fire up the Julia, a really great chorus pedal from Walrus, do a little Crossover Distortion and then it all ends up in my Carbon Copy Delay. You can get cool stuff, just like waiting on the precipice for the next moment. It's a great way to transition in and out of sections of a song because you can just kind of keep a sound going or whatever and then. Kind of suck all the sound out of the room and go back to your dry. Guitarist stuff, just anything I can do to try to play over top of our guitar player at any time.
Of course like we all love the Afterneath because it's got that drag .
Signal chain wise we’re going into the Strymon OB1 first, it's just such a good like flat compressor. That goes right into this. SYB5, the Boss synth pedal and I swear it's the best $125 you'll ever spend as a bass player.
The Bass synth is before the Cossover so that that I like to color that really clean sine wave synth with the distortion. This is an effect I use on a song called “Can't Sleep”.
I was a guitar player, I went to school for classical guitar and I always assumed I'd be a guitar player and then out of necessity I picked up bass which I think is a you know a good amount of bass players that have a similar path. At that time I was sort of a purist, like you know, just a bass into an amp. A nice round tone something to just hold down the low end and kind of get out of the way. I started buying gear and and and exploring what pedals could do for a bass. Getting a compressor and getting a little synth pedal and stuff. For instance the Crossover distortion, we did every bit of over driven bass on the record with that Crossover distortion. I mean there's a pedal if you look at it it's kind of intimidating. It's got eleven knobs on it early on I would've looked at that and what's the point. It's just it's just a bass. And of course now like most of my pedals have a lot of knobs and I'm not scared of them.
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