Following their recent tour here in Australia, there has been a lot of press surrounding Black Sabbath. There seems to be a lot of guitarists looking around again for some way to capture ‘that’ sound that Tony Iommi made so famous. You could go a long way with buying different guitars, a host of various pedals and even a Laney amp or two in order to achieve this, and still fall short of the mark. There are always so many uncertainties when trying to piece together a certain sound from a range of devices, so that is why it is best left to the experts. In this case, those experts are the team at Catalinbread who have come up with the Sabbra Cadabra pedal. It may be a bit of a mouthful to pronounce, but it certainly delivers the goods in Sabbath tone in just about any setup.
ALL IN THE BOX
That classic Sabbath guitar sound is a result of a very specific combination of a Laney Supergroup amp and a Dallas Rangemaster treble booster that Iommi used. So, it makes sense to harness those circuits in order to replicate that sound. This pedal does just that by offering the Supergroup’s preamp stage with JFETs replacing the valves and a Naga Viper treble booster circuit to push the signal into that almost fuzz-like realm that Iommi achieved with his rig. Short of hunting down old models of the originals, this is about as close as you will get to that rig and it is all contained in one nifty little pedal.
DEEP AND DARK
When thinking of that Sabbath guitar tone, it takes you to places that are a little darker than most of the other music of the time. Everything sounds down tuned, even when it isn’t. This comes for the tight, controlled low-end that Iommi’s rig delivered. The Sabbra Cadabra produces this low-end in a very faithful honouring of the original sound, even when used with single coil pickups through a very clean amp. I was really surprised at how dark my Strat could go, still in standard tuning, running through a fairly clean valve combo. This pedal does some evil things to your tone, just the way any Sabbath fan would want. Winding up the range knob on the pedal gets a really tight low-end drive that creates that fuzz in the sound that is typical of Iommi’s guitar tone.
For more details, head to guitarfactory.net.
Hits and Misses
Great combination of amp and boost in one
USA made and built like the proverbial
Black Sabbath guitar tone in a box