You could say that the Dirty Haggard Koffein distortion, born out of a collaboration between the Portland-based builder and Oak & Crow Coffee, is a caffeinated pedal – or, at the very least, that it can keep anyone awake.

A loud creature at heart, this pedal has a plenty of gain and output on tap, but sets itself apart for a rather quirky EQ section and noise gate.

The 3-way EQ section, placed before the gain stage, acts as a frequency-dependent gain control, allowing you to apply a different amount of distortion in each frequency band.

This configuration allows nearly infinite combination of distortion tones thanks to the interaction between the three EQ ranges, with the mids being the most influential frequency, generating high-gain metal distortion at high settings and anything from gnarly to shrill tones when dimmed.

The noise gate removes unwanted hiss and hum in between parts but also adds a subtle crossover distortion.

Check out the tones generated by the Koffein in the video below.

Dirty Haggard Koffein Distortion, Builder’s Notes

This is the Koffein. A collaboration between Dirty Haggard Audio & Oak and Crow!

The Koffein is a distortion/fuzz pedal with quirky function. There are 3 sections to the circuit. Input gain stage, 3-band EQ, and output gain stage.

The EQ section into the output gain stage is where things get kinda weird. Because the EQ section is in front of this gain stage, it acts as a frequency dependent gain control, allowing you to decide how much distortion you get for each of the 3 bands.

The ‘treble/feedback’ control adjusts high frequencies through this stage as you would expect, but when pushed, creates a shrill feedback loop for those who feed on chaos.

The ‘midrange’ control is where most of the action occurs. Reduce this control while boosting the others for a gnarly fuzz tone, or boost it for aggressive metal tones. When fully ‘dimed’, it results in a stationary wah sound. Many different sounds can be achieved throughout this controls sweep.

The ‘bass’ control selects which hole the abducting aliens probe once you arrive on their ship. Either that or it adjusts how tight/monstrous the low end distortion sounds. Cranking it will overload the last gain stage (in a good way).

This pedal has a gentle yet destructive noise-gate built into it. It kills most of the hiss/hum while also adding lots of crossover distortion in the mix. (why settle for just peak clipping when you can also clip the crossover?)

Each pedal comes with a 12oz bag of organic, fair-trade dark-roast coffee beans by Oak and Crow. https://www.oakandcrow.com/