Joe Gore Cult Germanium Overdrive
When Joe Gore delved into the germanium primitive booster designs of the 1960s, he was astonished. How the hell did these electrifying, supremely dynamic circuits fall into disuse? He says he became so obsessed with the circuits that felt like he’d joined some weird germanium cult. That’s why he calls his own take on those circuits Cult.
However, the Joe Gore Cult Germanium Overdrive is no ’60s clone: It departs dramatically from the original ’60s circuits, providing fatter lows, fewer piercing highs, and more responsive dynamics. It just seems to “gush” more.
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You probably know that 90% of today’s overdrives are related to a pedal whose name rhymes with Lube Reamer. These pedals employ an IC chip rather a discrete transistor. They compress your signal, making note attacks less prominent and limiting your dynamic range. The results are smooth and consistent—nothing wrong with that!
But Cult goes in the opposite direction, dramatically expanding your dynamic range. Note attacks crack like knuckles. Your phrases have an electrifying presence that seems to lunge from the speakers. When you hit the input hard, the bold, harmonically rich distortion maintains its edge, even in crowded musical contexts. Cult doesn't go “squish.” It barks.
The dynamic response is simply astounding - you can go from crystalline to meltdown by touch and guitar knob settings alone. With your guitar volume rolled back, the tone is nearly indistinguishable from bypass, so you can literally leave Cult on all night and conjure a huge range of overdrive/distortion tones directly from your guitar.
Cult isn’t for everyone. If you’re looking for an overdrive to smooth out your sound for consistent, predictable results, run away! But if you’re the sort of player who likes sculpting sounds via touch and dynamics, or if you enjoy tones that walk the tightrope between clean and distorted, Cult can be a revelation.
Cult was created in San Francisco and is built in Michigan by skilled craftspeople earning a fair wage.
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