January is always an exciting time for people who are in to their guitar gear, and this years NAMM show has teased some great new products from all kinds of companies. One such company is Minnesota based Chase Bliss Audio, who in recent years have gained quite a reputation for making some of the most exciting, forward thinking and generally tonally amazing guitar effects available. As proud stockists of their products, we were eager to see what they would bring to the NAMM show, and we were not disappointed…
First up is the Condor, and like quite a few Chase Bliss Audio pedals, it can do a lot if different things. Functionality and versatility are key to what Chase Bliss do, and their digitally controlled dip switchable parameters really can achieve a huge range of sounds. The Condor is an analog EQ, a preamp and a filter pedal. The pedal can operate both clean and overdriven, and give the player a huge amount of control over shaping their tone. The low pass filter section has three switchable resonance settings, and a midrange that you can boost/ cut from 150Hz to 5kHz. The midrange frequency selector also has a toggle switch for controlling the intensity of how much the signal is boosted or cut.
As with all Chase Bliss Audio pedals, the top mounted dip switches allow for even more sonic exploration. By ramping the frequency settings you can generate all kinds of weird and wonderful ersatz flanger and tremolo sounds, all of which can be externally controlled via an expression control, and like all Chase Bliss Pedals you can digitally save presets and access them via MIDI.
The second new product announcement is the Thermae, a digitally controlled analogue delay and pitch shifter capable of some truly unique sounds. At its most stripped back, the Thermae can act as a rich, lush sounding analogue delay. However, the Thermae is also capable of much more synth-like, expansive sounds. Cascading delays can be transformed in to pitched arpeggiator style sounds using the built in sequencing function. The Thermae also has a Step Mode, meaning you can cycle through patches using the Glide control to select the speed of transition from one pitch to another, generating some very synthesizer sounding tones.
Both the Condor & the Thermae stay true to Chase Bliss Audios ‘Digital Brain, Analog Heart’ mantra, giving you all the versatility of a digital guitar effect with the tonal purity that comes from analogue circuitry, and we can’t wait to give them a try once they arrive in store!