Category Archives: Jazz

New guitar pedalboard

It took time, but our new guitar pedalboard is here! The board itself is a Trio28 from Temple Audio Design fitted with an IEC AC Mains Micro Module (left) and a 4-way Jack Patch Module (right), all from Temple Audio Design.

As far as the pedals are concerned, from upper left clock-wise:

  1. Triple custom pedal from JAM Pedals:
    • DelayLlama + (analog delay)
    • WaterFall (chorus)
    • TubeDreamer+ (overdrive)
  2. GOO Limited Edition designed by Nels Cline from ToneConcepts (distortion)
  3. Mel9 from Electro-Harmonix (mellotron)
  4. Mini EGO from Wampler (compressor)
  5. DVP4 Volume X Mini Pedal from Dunlop (volume and expression)
  6. Mini Modular Switcher Ver. 2 from LoopSwitchers (volume pedal switcher)
  7. SneakAttack from Malekko Heavy Industries (attack/decay envelope modulator and tremolo)
  8. Lil Buddy from Malekko Heavy Industries (tap switch for SneakAttack)
  9. DIG from Strymon (stereo dual digital delay)
  10. BlueSky from Strymon (stereo reverberator)
  11. DittoX4 from TC Electronic (stereo dual looper)

The signal chain is as follows: MiniEGO → Mel9 → SneakAttack → TubeScreamer+ → GOO → Volume X Mini → WaterFall → DelayLlama → DIG (stereo) → BlueSky (stereo) → DittoX4 (stereo). The board is powered with a DC10 from CIOKS, fitted on the under side of the board (underneath the GOO). The AUX output  of the DVP4  (loose plug in the picture above) can be connected to the EXP input of the DIG. The switcher is used to by-pass the volume pedal, allowing it to function as expression control. The stereo output of the  DittoX4 goes to the 4-way Jack Patch Module (right). The right channel is connected to our trusty CUBE 80GX from Roland, while the left channel goes into our brand-new Fender Blues Junior III Woody Tequila Limited Edition. But that is the stuff of a separate post… Read more...

Pedal frenzy (Part III): blueSky from Strymon


Another guitar effect pedal making its way into our pedal board, this is the blueSky reverberator from Strymon. To say that it’s absolutely stunning would be an understatement. Lush, gorgeous reverb that can go to infinity.

Here a small sample introducing  the “mod” mode with infinite reverb morphing into Mingus’ Goodbye Pork Pie Hat and a crazy looped overdrive.

Pedal frenzy (Part II): Sneak Attack from Malekko

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Here is our newest guitar effect pedal, the Sneak Attack from Malekko Heavy Industries.

Sneak Attack is an auto-swell volume pedal that can also be manually triggered or used in a tremolo mode. The core of the pedal is an Attack/Decay envelope generator with separate length and curve controls for both the attack and decay segments. The envelope can be triggered or cycled in several ways using the input signal, built in footswitch, Lil’ Buddy footswitch or external clock/click track.

This is unlike any effect pedal in that it does not change the sound of your guitar, but the shape of the sound form. A crazy little sound machine with huge possibilities that we will be digging deeply. Read more...

Namesake guitar… at last

IbanezPMIbanez guitar company first released the Pat Metheny PM200 model in March 2013. At the top of the Ibanez PM line (which also includes PM120 and PM20), the PM200 is a full-hollow body electric guitar featuring a mahogany set-in neck, maple top/back/sides, ebony fretboard, and a single Silent 58 humbucker neck pickup. It has been widely acclaimed for its rich tone, fantastic playability, and exceptional build quality.  After the acoustic Martin D35 (1979) and the cut-away nylon Ovation #1863 (1991), it was time for us to do an update.

Here is a quick sample of the PM200 sound through Roland’s 80W CUBE in Tweed mode with a bit of rev and delay; a beautiful arrangement by John McLaughlin of jazz standard My Foolish Heart (by Victor Young):  Read more...

A treasure trove for jazz lovers

Musica degradata

In its first year of existence, the music blog Musica degradata has already posted over 400 entries of rare live concerts and ripped vinyls from the whole spectrum of contemporary jazz. The blog is a special treat for ECM fans, as the posts include incredible performances from many of its artists during the golden years of the label. Most of the recordings have quite decent sound quality and can be downloaded through an external site. Well worth periodic visits and a subscription to its RSS feed.

Live Jazz Lounge: unreleased recordings of live jazz from around the world

Music blog Live Jazz Lounge, launched January 2012, has posts featuring unreleased live jazz concerts anywhere from Buenos Aires to New York to  Stockholm to London, with entries from the 1970s to the present. In addition to concert info, the site provides links to purchase albums related to the featured concerts, and the site’s header features all original photographs from live jazz concerts.

Chronicle of a death foretold: Esbjörn Svensson’s premonitory reflections on death and the meaning of life

Pianist Esbjörn Svensson died suddenly, at the peak of his career, in a diving accident on June 14, 2008, 44 years of age. Here he makes a striking account of a previous close encounter with death and his personal reflections (audiofile in Swedish, Summer 2003).

It was as if I could see straight inside her. And she had made up her mind. I knew it. It was an unmistakable feeling. I then understood that I had to speak to her. If she is going to jump, I will have to stop her. And somehow, distract her attention. Slowly, I begin to move towards her. She stays very strategically placed, exactly at the exit of the tunel as the train approaches the platform. And a bit too close to the edge. I come closer to her. Very, very carefully. Slowly. I understand that it is incredibly sensitive. I do not think very much. I feel I would just like to distract her. I come closer, maybe 10 meters away from her. I hear that the train approaches. And I hear that she hears. She makes herself ready. I come even closer. Very slowly… Now I am just 3 meters from her. Then comes the train… and the woman jumps, straight in front of it. The train buzzes. People scream. Everything stops. And I stood 3 meters from her… But I turn around and run away… It’s too much. I don’t see what happens. There, in front of my eyes, a person has taken her life, straight out into something else. Something which we don’t know anything about. And I can’t just look anymore. I run. The police is coming. People all around is in desperation. But I walk away…” Read more...

Pablo Marquez: Musica del Delphin (Luys de Narvaez 1580)

Ok, this not jazz, as it was written several centuries before jazz was invented, but it is a truly amazing recording nevertheless. Masterly interpretation of Luys de Narvaez “Seis libros del Delphín” by Argentine guitarist Pablo Marquez for the ECM label. Marquez got to choose 17 of the more than 40 pieces included in the “Seys libros” compendium. Originally published in 1538, the pices were composed for the vihuela, a predecessor of the modern guitar.Here Marquez skillfully demonstrates how rewarding these pieces can be even in a modern instrument. This impecable performance preserves the intimate, introspective character of the pieces. Timeless, beautiful music of a mystical nature. Pablo Marquez was born in the northwest of Argentina in 1967. He has played with bandoneonist Dino Saluzzi, cellist Anja Lechner, the Rosamunde Quartett and the Ensemble Alma Viva. Read more...