Nov 27, 2018

The music of NYC experimental guitarist Noveller is not for everyone: focusing on sonic texture and favoring the pure enjoyment of (heavily effected) sound composition over songwriting, the project of Sarah Lipstate is bound for a niche audience of patient and sophisticated listeners.

Mysterious Dutch manufacturer known as Dr. No obviously belongs to this category, since the builder recently released a striking stompbox fruit of a collaboration with the Brooklyn based guitarist. Enter the Moon Canyon.

A gorgeous looking device, this is a multi-effect pedal that features everything you need to create mind altering soundscapes: Delay, Reverb, Loop and Drive – all accessible through a separate footswitch.

It’s dual mono output make it particularly intriguing for musicians like Lipstate so committed to sound to carry two amps on stage.

It’s available in a very limited run of 350 hand built units, coming in a box resembling a novel – a play on words tied to the artist’s name, but also a clever way to present this effect not just as a product, but as a story: the story of a creative collaboration.

You can see the video of the pedal below and read Dr. No’s presentation at the bottom of this post.

BestGuitarEffects.com was one of the few pedal publications able to get a unit and published a stellar review of it:

“The Moon Canyon is a pinnacle representation of an instrument that evokes inspiration before you even play it. Born of a collaborative vision shared by Dr. No Effects and Sarah Lipstate of Noveller, the Moon Canyon offers sonic scribes an assortment of effects with which to compose surrealistic musical odysseys and weave synesthetic tapestries of sound.” – Read the full review by BestGuitarEffects.com here.

Here are a few recent demos of it:

Two years ago Dr. No and Sarah Lipstate of Noveller, sat together and put their creative heads together with the ultimate goal, creating a new guitar effect of the highest level in Art, Tone and Design in the world of handcrafted Boutique guitar effects.

#How it came together.

Sarah Lipstate is a solo artist who creates music for her Noveller.

She uses guitar Effects as a brush and paint to color her instrumental dreamy and very spherical music that she performs as an artist, known as Noveller to a worldwide audience.

Guitar effects are not strange to her, and she uses them in pleasant abundance in an often unorthodox manner with a great and experimental results. I personally find her a pioneer in this field and an inventor of a genre. Also a reason to work with her to develop something new with Noveller.

The beginning was somewhat difficult because I didn’t knew the person behind Noveller. In order to be able to create, I need some knowledge from the person behind it to be able to write this book, in the form of a guitar effect. So I soon took the opportunity to go see Noveller perform and hang with her to write the first few sentences, after a couple of days with Noveller in LA. These couple of days were very inspirational. After a lot of back and forth correspondence, shapes started to develop. Still took me a long period to fit all loose ends together and come up with a total concept. It all finally resulted in what is now become the amazing MOON CANYON.

#The concept.

When I listen to Noveller’s music, I experience music in a new for me alienated way. Almost isolated listening to an abstract way of compositions with not the standard way of how a song is put together.

With that in mind, as well as the area where Noveller lives and composes, is near a park called Moon Canyon. The first time I drove up there, I had to stop for a few minutes to experience the gorgeous view, when I turned around, this sign of the Moon Canyon park was facing me.

The pedal is named after that moment. I also needed something to do with the Moon itself. So I developed and created a little Moon as a center piece that has the function to work as a moon cycle. The MOON CANYON, houses 3 effects and with each switched on effect, a part of the Moon glows up creating that MOON cycle. The little moon is covered by a dome. Matching the concept and atmosphere, an Art-Nouveau design has been created and hand silkscreened on the dark night blue sky colored housing.

Because all my Creations almost feel like actually writing a story in total, and this project and for whom it’s made with, I made the parallel with an actual book or Novel(ler), so I created an actual hollow collectors book to save, transport and house the MOON CANYON.

#What kind of effect(s) is/are the MOON CANYON.

The MOON CANYON houses three different guitar effects in the following order of chain, Overdive, Reverb and Delay. It makes it a multi effect. An fx-loop, (not to be mistaken by a recording looper), is added and made to use and put other effects in between the Overdive and the Reverb & Delay that you can switch on and off. Most guitar Effects users prefer to have their Reverb and Delays at the end of the fx chain to get the best out of these fx, one of the reasons that one is added here too, as I can imagine that you probably like to add Effects to your pedalboard.

-The Overdrive is the first in chain. It is an overdrive that is very transparent and extremely suitable for a dynamic playing style but also very complimentary on the Reverb and Delay. The Overdrive has a mini toggle switch on top of the effect to add more low ends. Dail functions are, Volume, Tone and Drive.

-Second is the Effects-Loop. You can redirect the signal into the loop chain you prefer and put together, and still keep the Reverb and Delay at the end of your chain. If you switch OFF the FX-loop by using the FX-Loop footswitch on the pedal, not using another in between added Effects chain, you bypass it. If you connect the Loop In with the Loop Out by using a patch cable, the signal bypasses without the use of a looped fx chain. If you leave out a FX-chain or a patch cable in between the Loop In & Loop Out, your FX-loop footswitch will function as a mute. The FX-Loop has no part in the moon light like the Overdrive, Reverb and Delay do light up 1/3 of the moon, only the switch ring of the FX-Loop will light up red when engaged.

-3rd is the Reverb.

This is a single knob Digital Reverb based on a high quality Belton Reverb brick with a “Long” Reverb. The BIGGEST sounding Reverb simulation in the range of Belton bricks. With the use of a nice amplifier or multiple amps this Reverb can sound like playing in a Cathedral. Just turn up or down the potentiometer to add more or less Reverb.

-Last but not least the Delay.

This is a Digital Delay but with analog sounding characteristics. The Delay has three Knobs. Mix, to mix in the amount of present Delay to your signal. Time, the tempo of your delay. Repeats the feedback. When you turn the repeats to max or you turn it while a signal runs through, you can create a killer oscillation. Have it turned above 2 o-clock and turn the Time while a signal runs through, you may find yourself in oscillation heaven.

At the end you have two mono outputs to play with. Use two amps like Noveller is using or run one to an amp and another to a new chain of effects and then to a amp. Just a simple cool extra.