So, what IS the story on Wave Cannon® version 2.0, or as we’ve decided to call it, the Wave Cannon MKII Superdistorter? The long story short is that this thing is an unrepentant, unapologetic distortion pedal that is totally nasty and fun. This Cannon comes pre-loaded with balls (pun alert!) and is capable of going from cranked, lightly dirty amp tones to the sound of a furry Godzilla devouring a junkyard full of broken a/c window units.
It’s different than the original, which was based on the classic ’70s fuzzstortions we grew up playing. It’s different from our Haymaker™, which is a wide range drive pedal based around the rotation of a clipping network into different locations in the circuit, and which is intended to respond and feel like an extension of your amp. This pedal is really about rocking your socks off. While it can do some extremely cool mild-to-medium crunch tones, Wave Cannon II is really capable of overwhelming your amp.
While this pedal started as a simple batch of changes to the original, the more we messed with it, the more we wanted from it. We went for multiple gain stages to give us more distortion and to recover volume after the passive tone stages. The focus (mids) and tone controls are different from what we’ve done before and can give you a really broad range of textures and voicings. There is a LOT of gain and volume on tap, as we’d been infuriated in the past by great sounding classic distortion pedals we’ve owned that didn’t go far enough with clean amps, or were quieter than unity gain or the bypass signal. The rumble switch allows more low end if you want it, or lets you tighten things up if you don’t need it. As per all Caroline pedals, WC MKII runs on standard industry 9V DC power supplies and features true bypass switching. It is a good pedalboard citizen that plays well with others.