The Sunkudo ($310) is a refinement of the Burns Buzzaround fuzz,
an early-’70s pedal favored by Robert Fripp, who used it in both
early-’70s King Crimson and during his initial collaborations with
Brian Eno. The Sunkudo’s Fuzz, Sustain, and Volume controls are
highly interactive, which means that it may not be easy to dial in
the tone you want in just a few seconds. But with the investment
of some time you can find an incredible variety of singing vintage
fuzz sounds—including those classic Robert Fripp tones. The original
Buzzaround circuit was quite a different animal from the Fuzz
Faces and Tonebenders of its vintage, and the Sunkudo is very
different from most fuzzes on the market today. It has its own
sound and behavior, particularly in the way different harmonics
of the guitar signal will leap out in lovely sustained feedback at
higher gain settings. Since Tanabe apparently likes to have four
knobs on his boxes, he has added a fourth control to adjust the
brightness of the LED.
KUDOS Quiet. Very different-sounding from other fuzzes. Unusual
vintage tones. Powerful, beautiful, and potentially scary sounds here.
CONCERNS Pricey. No external power jack (jack option is available).
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