Givin’ the Klon Centaur & KTR a run for it’s money, the Electro-Harmonix SOUL FOOD Pedal!
Klon has a brief history of products: The handwired Centaur, & the mass produced KTR. Between the two, they share a circuit with little variation, this from a company that has been faithfully building smooth overdrive pedals since 1994.
Why hasn’t the Klon changed?
- If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.
- One-man operations don’t take commands from anyone else.
The Centaur was designed by Bill Finnegan along with 2 workmates, while left to Finnegan to hand build over 8,000 units. The KTR is an attempt to make the product available to a wider audience, assembled via an automated assembly line. The KTR sold 1,500 units. Because of quality issues, production was shut down…
Anyday now, the Klon KTR will materialize in it’s 2nd iteration. Because of the lag time between The Centaur and the KTR’s 1st and 2nd releases, the natives have grown restless…and broke. Money spent on divergent products from a Klon-type pedal can really add up. This reason alone justified the existence of the EHX Soul Food Overdrive to starving artists.
Send in the Klones!
Builders (with an itch) had/have been busy attempting their own flavors of the Klon variety:
- JHS had their Klone (Discontinued once the KTR originally arrived on the scene 2012)
- ARC Effects produced a Klone and Klone V2
- The Mythical Overdrive by Rimrock Effects (This link is to my review – a superior product, BTW)
- Custom Klons by Random Affects Pedals
- The Kingslayer from Mad Bean Pedals (a mutated Klon, The Sunking was a more true circuit to the Klon, yet discontinued)
Perhaps the most blatant reproduction was attempted Mike Matthews of Electro-Harmonix. EHX decided to build a budget-copy of the Klon, releasing the EHX Soul Food Overdrive pedal in December 2013. I was one of those who sprang to pay the $60 (a fraction of a Klon), and thought to try it out. These sold out at an incredibly fast rate.
Sounds and Settings
Using a Squier Classic Vibe Tele with D.Allen Cheetahs + Vintage Sound Amps – 15 watt Princeton, I started with the volume at 11, gain at 9, treble at 11.
Neck Pickup: Very nice woody sound, perfect for a weighty funk chording. Each string felt a little more well represented. There was a little pop at the top of each note, kinda nice. Not life changing, but nice.
Bridge Pickup: The character of the pickup was amplified, rather than hidden, just as with the neck pickup, but of course more treble-y.
I stopped playing, and promptly resolved to pass it on, wondering how this could fit into my playing… Then I went back, as a buddy of mine reminded me to turn the amp up and turn the Soul Food up as well.
Result: Volume 2:00, Treble 12:00, Gain 9:00…This. This was the sound that I had been looking for. Or so I thought…
I had resolved to pass this pedal on, and I have. If I run across another one really cheap, I will undoubtedly grab it. The Klon KTR is nowhere to be seen, as promised by Mr. Finnegan in an article by premierguitar.com.
[usrlist Hardware:4 “Sounds:4” “Vibe:2″ Value:3 avg=”true”]
What is the current availability of the KTR?
The unit should be widely available—through dealers both here in the U.S. and in various other countries—by the time this interview is published. Hopefully by then I will have found time to get some kind of updated Klon website going, which of course will have contact info for the current dealers.
I’d recommend the Mythical Overdrive if considering a Klone!
Gearmanndude has produced two variations of shootout videos, one comparing the EHX Soul Food to the Silver Klon Centaur and another to the Klon KTR. Analogman produced a video of comparison to a Gold Klon as well as a feature demo. Don’t miss Curtis Kent’s Demo of the JHS Meat and 3 mod to the Klon Centaur, it’s another level of Soul Food.
Try one out and see for yourself! Get your Electro-Harmonix SOUL FOOD Overdrive Pedal today!