Josh Homme guitar tone with The Skeleton Key

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Josh Homme guitar tone with The Skeleton Key

Josh Homme
Words by Mixdown staff

Queens of the Stone Age’s guitar tones are that of legend.

Josh Homme has been secretive about what exactly they used, and keen internet investigators will have watched deep dives from producer Eric Valentine (that’ve been pulled down from time to time). Valentine explains that the use of multiple smaller combos blended together for a uniquely gritty, punchy and rounded sound.

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This week, Funny Little Boxes and Let’s Play All announce The Skeleton Key, a simply laid-out pedal that harnesses the mid-forward rock tones on the band’s now decades long catalogue. Much simpler than the multiple amp, switcher, phase flipper and console routing process of Valentine, The Skeleton Key is a three-knob pedal developed by Funny Little Boxes, Matt Webster of the Let’s Play All YouTube channel and the pedal builder Andy Ilgunas.

With simple enough Volume, Gain and Tone controls, the pedal captures whatever ‘that’ Josh Homme guitar thing is, allowing it to be your entire tone or blended amongst other gains and drives. It’s an op-amp based distortion pedal, designed to be even more accurate with down-tuning, allowing players to nail Homme’s famous guitar sounds.

The Skeleton Key is available for pre-order now from Funny Little Boxes, powered by a 9V DC Negative input with no battery compartment. You’ve got to save room for all the tone!