My Rig: Psychedelic Porn Crumpets
16.02.2021

My Rig: Psychedelic Porn Crumpets

Words by Jake McEwan

A look into the freaky sounds of the band's latest album.

A prime example of Perth’s penchant for fuzzed-out sounds, festival favourites Psychedelic Porn Crumpets have spooned up another big dollop of freaky psych-rock jams on their latest album SHYGA! The Sunlight Mound. It’s a record that sees the band tighter than ever and adventuring far into the nether with obtuse guitar tones, bizarre effects and plenty of cosmic fuckery, and we’re totally hooked. 

To find out more about the making of SHYGA!, we linked up with the band’s frontman Jake McEwan for a chat about his favourite pieces of gear that made it onto the record.

Guitar Rig 

Easily my favourite piece of software ever created, and absolutely shits all over Photoshop. Every PPC record is plastered with effects that I’ve either built from an existing preset or I’ll build from scratch with all the available components – it’s basically like owning every amp ever made. I run all my vocals through the program too.

There’s such a raw tone when you turn off all the cabs on the amps. I do the same with the bass and guitars as well, only running the heads straight into Ableton. Unless you have a big enough budget for buying decent mics to capture a warm amp tone, then DI is definitely the way to go. I’m a massive advocate for DI’ing everything.

Ableton Live 

I get that most studios prefer using ProTools for its ease of multi-tracking, but because I record most of the Crumpets stuff from home, I find Ableton is way more user friendly and idiot proof.

The whole of SHYGA’s glitch guitar sound came about by accident through Ableton – I was quantising some guitar parts and thought I’d transpose the take up an octave while in beats mode, and the shimmer that came out sounded magical. I started using the technique on every song and have since been diving deeper into Ableton to see what other anomalies I can find.

MI Audio GI Fuzz 

This was Sam Ford’s great find. While I was recording some guitars at Tone City he showed me this Sugar Army track he’d recorded a few years back, I was immediately struck by one incredibly fuzzy  guitar that sounded like it was a synth. He told me it was the GI Fuzz and I spent ages looking for one.

I eventually stumbled across one in Japan when we were on tour and had to grab it. It’s sprinkled lightly throughout the record to create a stronger impact when you hear it.

Aclam Guitars Dr. Robert 

This was another pedal I found in Japan. I was instantly drawn to it as the artwork features John Lennon dropping a tab of acid into a cup of tea, and it’s drawn by Klaus Voormann, who created the Revolver album artwork.

I would have bought it just for The Beatles memorabilia, but when I plugged it in I felt complete. It’s basically a Vox amp emulator, but really packs a punch when it’s cranked. I took my Blues Driver off my board and replaced it with this puppy, along with the GI Fuzz, and I’ve never been happier with my tone.

Mellotron

Another one of Sam Ford’s doings! At Tone City he’s got a Mellotron sitting by his desk. We first used it on ‘My Friend’s A Liquid’ while recording Whatchamacallit, and since then I’ve been hooked on that violin and flute patch.

Sam gratefully lent it to me for a few weeks while I was working on SHYGA!. It’s such an awesome instrument, I definitely need to get one at some stage. My life has been missing without it…

SHYGA! The Sunlight Mound, the new album from Psychedelic Porn Crumpets, is out now.