The Next Step for Pitch Shifting
Effect pedal masters Electro-Harmonix continue to take the world by storm with their newest addition to the Next Step expression pedals. The pedal in discussion this time around is the Slammi. The Slammi is a pitch shifter and harmonizer completely controllable by foot. Considering how many times EHX has proven their valor in the pitch effect department – like the HOG and the numerous models of the POG for example – I’m a bit surprised I didn’t see the Slammi coming.
At face value the Slammi looks like it’s a pitch bending expression pedal that can get those dive effects as well as the jumping octaves found in Satriani’s song “Searching”. And while the eleven different interval options (including Minor 2nd, Major 2nd, Major 3rd, Perfect 4th, Perfect 5th, Major 6th, Minor 7th, as well as 1, 2, and 3 octaves) will permit just that. And since you can toggle where the pitch is in the idle position you can either bend up or down
What really makes the Slammi such a snappy pedal is that while it’s an expression pedal, it has much potential beyond just interval bends. Simply having it plugged into your pedal chain alone can be all it takes to get some lush chorus-like sounds or instant drop tunings.
Take this video featuring EHX’s Bill Ruppert. This being among the first impressions many people will have of what the Slammi can do, he shows we can just play around with the sliders alone to get oceans of options.
Off the bat he doesn’t really use the pedal for much manual bending, but rather toggles the controls to alter how the pedal affects the signal when it’s resting in the idle position. Considering the features it’s almost more like a regular effect pedal built into an expression pedal. Having the option to use it like an expression is there, but without quite the feeling of obligation to use it like one, like you would in wah pedals and what have you.
Then on top of that you can channel the dry signal through unhampered, turning the Slammi into a harmonizer on top of the other functions. The Slammi’s list price is nestled in at $191.66. More info on the specs and deep, inner workings of the Slammi can be found at EHX.com.