As I am not willing to afford getting me a real Rams Head Big Muff, I decided to go Boutique and got me a Wren & Cuff – The Caprid which is said to be a very good faithful recreation of this classic Big Muff. The original one from nowerdays just doesn’t make it the way this little beast does.
But why a Big Muff? Isn’t that that muddy, heavy compression distortion monster that eliminates all the dynamic and just produces heavy dirt? Yes and no!
However, the Big Muff of course is all that I stated above, it is in its unique way a very subtle Fuzz. If it’s a Fuzz at all! The discussions have not been lead to the end to clarify if, or if not, or if it’s just a distortion pedal. To be honest, I don’t care, as long as it does what it should.
Subtle, well … not in the way it sounds, it is huge, it is big, it is mean. But subtle in the way it stacks with other Fuzz pedals! If you run different Fuzz pedals into the Muff, it is incredible how different the textures and harmonics develop. One is in common always, you get an almost endless sustain! Try it with Tonebenders, Fuzz Faces, Superfuzz, up to you, always a (sometimes difficult to tame) pleasure.
Have a listen to J Mascis from Dinosaur Jr and you know what a Big Muff can do. It’s J Mascis always on effect. He just uses different volume levels and, as described above, other Fuzz pedals to feed the beast! Other Big Muff users? Better ask who hasn’t used one … I recommend the Kitrae Big Muff pages for further reading.
I bought the Caprid used online, but it was not delivered. The seller transferred the money back to me and I looked for another one. I succeeded and got another one. In the meantime the original one arrived after probably having had a good time in South America! Of course I gave back the money to the seller, made some tests and sold one, while I kept the other one.
Here it is, the rhythm guitar is the Caprid: