Chris Shepperson - AKA Shep On Bass
Shep is co-owner of Bitnormal records, session bass-player, and the man behind sheponbass.co.uk - one of the better effects resources on the web - amongst other things. Current projects include Patient Zero, Arbiter, The Beat Consortium, and Shep's solo electronica moniker SubTric. Most notable of Shep's recent projects is Our Helical Mind - a two-piece dubstep and electronica band using live bass and drums, not to mention an absolute boat-load of effects pedals.
"Zohar's Phase Shift" Phaser
The first pedal Shep commissioned was a live replacement for his Moog MF-103 12-Stage Phaser. While the Moog is absolutely fantastic, the footprint can make it a difficult one to place on a gigging pedalboard. With this in mind, Shep asked me to build a compact phaser with Rate, Depth and Regeneration/Resonance controls that could replace the Moog on the 6-stage setting. The addition of a 4/6/8 stage rotary switch allows a little more flexibility. To stay pedalboard-friendly, Shep wanted all jacks north-mounted.
The circuit is FET-based, and tuned to work with the full frequency spectrum that Shep will be shoving through it. The Regen control is a more-is-more control - high settings are over the top and into noise-making territory. You can always turn them down if they're high, but you can't turn them past max if they're low. That's the logic anyway!
Named after the special move of a character from one of Shep's favourite computer games.
"Meat Grinder" Bass Fuzz
Second in the Shep custom line was the Meat Grinder bass fuzz. Shep asked for an improvement on the fuzzes he had used previously, and so work got under way. Ultimately, and despite the large number of controls, we went for a simpler option to expand upon the oldest fuzz circuit of all time. The results were rather fantastic.
Fuzz, Gate, EQ and Out controls will be familiar, while the addition of the In (input impedance) and Blend (clean blend) controls allow versatility with active instruments and in a band setting.
The result is a big, subby, grindy, bitey, nasty, snarly monster. There is no "nice" or "smooth" fuzz to be had here, and absolutely 100% no mojo. If you want those things in a fuzz, then an old-school germanium fuzz is for you.
Usual Shep layout with all jacks north-mounted for minimum pedalboard-footprint.