Noise Boyz Review
So I actually picked up the Suhr Riot distortion pedal on a whim because I had heard that Suhr was an excellent boutique brand but I had never played anything of theirs. What I found was a pedal that I didn’t have to spend tons of time dialing in tone with just to get a good out of the box sound. To keep things simple the first setting I tried was setting distortion around 3 and Tone around 7. This gave me a nice sounding ‘slightly more overdriven than a standard overdrive’ sound. You can hear what it sounds like in this little blues riff below – it’s not too bright but doesn’t sound dull either (some pedals I find you really need to crank the tone knob for there to be any real high end to it at all). I also found this setting to be really nice when playing 2 or 3 tone chords in the midrange strings, which kept things relative clean for a distortion but added a great, saturated sounding crunch to the riff.
Since this is a distortion pedal and not an overdrive, of course the next setting I tried was really stepping up the level to around 7 while leaving the tone right around 7 to hear how it performs on power chords/lower frequency stuff without putting the drive all the way to 10 (I generally find with most distortions this is the sweep spot for crunch without the drive becoming overwhelming). You can hear how it sounds in the faux-metal riff below.
And what good would a sound sampling of a pedal be without setting everything to 10 and just letting her rip? So below is a shreddier riff still in the blues arena. Everything still comes through very clear and it can, but it doesn’t really get too shreddy even at it’s highest settings.
To sum things up, the Suhr Riot really shines as a distortion that’s on the lighter side of the gain range – it’s not going to give you Eddie Van Halen style crazy high gain tones (for that we recommend the Diezel VH-4) and it’s not going to give you a Clapton ‘Lay Down Sally’ type light blues overdrive (for that you might want a simple Boss SD-1). It hits that sweet spot right above where an overdrive pedal at 10 wouldn’t quite give you enough gain but a high gain distortion pedal at 5 would be too much. In my opinion this pedal is great for pop-punk and blues where the tones generally fall more in this range, but probably isn’t best for metal, 80s style high gain tones, or super dirty sounding tones (for that we recommend the Big Muff Pi Op Amp or Swollen Pickle). What’s nice is turning this one all the way to 10 isn’t going to destroy your ears or make your bandmates hate you for overwhelming them with feedback in your quest for tone. I also loved how easy this pedal was to dial in saturated crunch tones without having to fidget with it for an hour. Plus it’s purple and shiny and looks cool so why not give it a try?
1 x 1/4"
1 x 1/4"
How It Works
Choose a Plan
Pick how many pedals you want to try a month, from one to three.
Play Them All
Try every signal-chain you can imagine until you find the tone that’s right for you.
Keep, Swap, or Buy
Keep the pedals you rent for as long as you want. Love them? Buy them. Hate them? Swap them.