Video: 3 Japanese Boutique Pedals You've Never Heard Before

From the far–out Shin–Ei fuzzes of the ‘60s to the magic of Maxon in the ‘70s and the ubiquitous Boss pedals of the ‘80s, Japan has always been great at mass–producing the pedals that help us make the music we love.

But while the boutique builder explosion here in the U.S. is evident for all to see, what are the boutique builders in Japan up to? Today, we're getting into three solid boutique boxes from Japan that are worth lending your ear to.

Katanasounds Furious Man Multi–Faceted Fuzz

Katanasound is the brand of “Mitch” Takaki, a builder located just outside of Tokyo. He previously produced pedals under the mt’Lab label, before re–establishing himself with Katanasounds.

The Furious Man Fuzz is both a tribute to and a modernization of the classic Japanese fuzzes of the ‘60s. Not only able to emulate their dying battery or broken transistor sounds, it’s also able to give your guitar a thick wall of snarling fuzz.

The Furious Man also features a unique buffer kill switch that eliminates the loss of high–end in a buffered signal chain.

Weed Ugeee High–Gain Distortion

The Weed line of effects pedals by Mr. Nakajima started out as a series of modifications to the popular Boss line of pedals before expanding into original circuits and designs.

The Ugeee pedal is a collaboration with the guitarist Kaoru of the Japanese metal band Dir En Grey and is distributed by Harry’s Engineering in Tokyo.

Able to take your guitar from a hard rock setting all the way to high–gain thrash, it also features a very useful mids switch to boost or scoop out your sound.

Shin's Music Dumbloid Special BTM

The Shin’s Music Dumbloid, produced by Shin Suzuki in Tokyo, has already started to earn itself a hallowed reputation.

Mr. Suzuki’s background as a respected amp engineer who specialised in Dumble repairs for Japan gave him unique insight when he decided to design a pedal that would have some of the same qualities as the fabled amp.

Featuring a versatile accent knob and a Jazz/Rock setting, this pedal gives you both the presence and the great rock crunch of one of the most coveted amps of all time packed into a pedalboard–friendly enclosure.

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