There are plenty of different octave pedals out there, most of which follow a similar path by either giving you a lower octave in addition to your original note, or a higher one. There are a handful of pedals that give you both at the same time, but these are often pretty dang expensive or, in many cases, come with built-in fuzz that you can’t get rid of. The Mooer Tender Octaver strips it all right back to simply give you the choice of one octave down or one octave up.
THREE HEADS ARE BETTER THAN ONE
The pedal itself is teeny and quite cute. There are only three controls: a large Dry knob for the original signal, plus smaller Sub (lower octave) and Upper (higher octave) knobs. You can turn the Dry control all the way down to use either of the octave sounds for its own little effect, or you can blend in as little or as much of the octaves as you like: from a very subtle padding underneath your original note to a big, loud doubling effect. Because the pedal is so small you can’t power it with a battery - it simply won’t fit - so there’s a 9v DC in at the top of the pedal, and the input and output jacks are staggered either side of the unit. The pedal is true bypass and is housed in a metal casing for durability - it does feel very ‘stompable’.
The lower-octave sound has a pleasantly chunky attack, which lets you simulate a unison bass part through a clean tone or a big aggressive fuzzy grumbly grindy growl when played through stacks of distortion. Either way it tracks very well, perhaps better than my beloved BOSS OC-2 Octave pedal, which can sometimes be a little finicky. The upper octave has a sort of digital chatter vibe to it, maybe not as natural-sounding as the lower-octave but certainly very useful for adding shimmer to clean tones, or screaming harmonics to distorted leads. The real fun happens when you use both sounds at once though, either with or without the dry signal. You can stack three octaves for a huge melody, or suck out the dry sound for an eerie, synth-like feel. Another thought is to run a clean sound through a bunch of cathedral reverb with all three voicings cranked, and you’ll get an entertainingly spooky church organ sound that you can use to add some menace to your dungeon metal escapades.
LOVE ME TENDER
This is a really handy pedal for those who either want the occasional octave effect without breaking the bank, or who want something to inspire new sounds and ideas. It sounds as good clean as it does dirty, which isn’t often true of octave pedals, and it’s affordable and reliable. Check it out.
Hits and Misses
Nice clear octave effects
Small pedalboard footprint
Too small for a battery