The Wombats have been using Orange amps pretty much since they first started as a band. So before their headline show at Wembley arena Jamie, ‘Murph’s’ guitar tech took some time out to run us through his rig. The three Dual Terrors are the rock of the rig and a Tiny Terror is used as a different flavour

Hi i’m Jamie Matthew Murphy’s guitar tech with the Wombats and this is his rig.

So we have got all these guitars here, we have got ‘Blue Bob’ which is his main guitar, a paisley telecaster from 96′ I believe. It’s the one he uses the most, on most tunes, it is in standard tuning. Then we have a spare which is a brown tele, we have got a strat he uses on three or four tunes as well. A black and a white jazzmaster and a Fender Coronado too.

These are all going through a Sennheiser wireless system which are then combined in a Radial JX44 combiner, I have a remote down here which I can easily switch them when we are doing guitar changes. Then it goes through a G2 gig rig pedal board, now all this is midi automated as I think there is only two or three songs without a click track, so every song with a click track ‘Murph’ doesn’t have to touch his pedal board other than to turn tuner on or off but that’s it really, it’s all pretty automated. We shall move on to the amps.

We have amp one and amp two which are both Dual Terrors, amp three which is a Tiny Terror. Amp one and amp two both go to 2×12 cabinets, amp one the sounds on both channels are very similar, i’d say it’s a clean sound with a bit of bite and then when he hits his footswitch to change his channels it gets a bit louder and a bit more of a gravely version of the first one. But there is not very much difference with that and amp two, the clean channel is all down so there is no signal passing through it until he hits the switch and then you get a really gainy, driven sound. Amp three goes through a 1×10 and that is a purely uneffected signal, so it bypasses all the pedals straight to the back of the amp and it just gives Pete at the Front of house or monitors something to get some clarity if the other two are raging.

I’ve personally always loved Orange amps because there is not twenty knobs on them, you haven’t got bass, treble and middle control for tone. It’s very, very simple you’ve got six knobs, three for each channel and you get everything you need out of them, you don’t any more. They are perfect for what you do.

If we go to America or fly gig they lugged about in a backpack and can literally hand carry them onto a plane, they can take a knocking about, there is not really any signal you can put through that it doesn’t sing, it doesn’t sound as it should. They are not venue specific, for instance we played Birmingham academy last night and we are doing Wembley arena tonight, you don’t struggle with volume or with control with the amp. They have got more than enough punch for Wembley arena.

You get that classic british sound don’t you, that classic british rock sound from all valve analogue amps. It’s the simplicity that makes them, that’s what makes the tone so good I think. There is very little taken away from it by adding more, there is not much there but what’s there is perfect for a classic British rock sound.

Quality.

It’s one of the most misunderstood words in the dictionary.

Yet the history of the word quality can be traced back to Plato. To the philosopher, ‘quality’ is characteristic that exists by itself, and cannot be reduced further.

In Latin ‘qualitas’ translates as ‘of what kind’, or simply put relative to the need of the user. But by the Middle Ages, everything become more confused and quality suddenly became quantifiable.

These days people talk of quality as a attribute itself, but without context the work has no meaning.

And that’s when quality lost its mojo.

Getting Back to Basics

Orange Amplifiers might be synonymous with the grunt and grit of analogue circuitry, oozing with creamy mids, distinctive lows and highs that define the British sound.

And yes, that’s true to an extent. But there’s more to it than that.

The Quality of Orange Amplifiers

You could call Technical Director, Adrian Emsley the father of the modern Orange Amplifier.

Not only can Adrian design and build amps, but he worked in all the places that you’d find amps being pushed to their limit, like out on the road and in the studio.

And that’s how we test the mettle of Quality at Orange Amplifiers:

Made by the working musician, for the working musician.

Beastly Thinking

What Adrian and his team do is make amplifiers that are complexly simple. More time is taken in the design stage to make an Orange Amp playable with little user input.

Orange Amplifiers are designed to easily dial in a tone. Which means more time making music, less time fighting to get the sound you want.

As Little Design as Possible

When it comes to designing amps, lots of care, consideration, time and heaps of perspiration go into the design stage. Our goal is to create products that have fewer components in the signal chain. The thinking is simple:

Remove the complexity and there’s less to go wrong.

That’s exactly why Orange Amplifiers are favoured by touring rig companies worldwide. They’re a reliable workhorse that can take the punishing rigours of the road.

The Roadies Friend

Moving, lifting, stacking, packing. All the wondrous jobs that eventually take their toll on your gear. Mick Dines (of Orange Amplifiers) knew this well and the result was one of the most solid speaker cabs on the market.

Loved by roadies and musicians alike, Orange cabinets have a distinc Orange tone; as it happens, making gear built to last also sounds great. Take a look at the bottom of the cab and you’ll find wooden skids instead of castors, skids make moving gear easier but they also acoustically couple the cabinet to the stage.

Endurance without Compromise

At the very heart of the valve amp is the output transformer. We always over spec our transformers, and there’s a reason for this:

An under spec transformer leads to excess heat being produced inside an amp, ultimately causing problems over long-term operation.

Secondly, if underpowered, the transformer will saturate, throttling the output signal. This will cause losses to the bottom and top of the frequency range rather than passing the whole bandwidth.

Equipped for the Modern Musician

Pedals, pedals, pedals; there’s so many tone choices available, but to get the most of your gear, consider the FX loop.

Your amp, pedals and instrument all need to work in harmony together. Too much signal into your pedal board and the circuit overloads causing distortion. On the way back in, you want sufficient level to drive the power amp.

Orange Amplifiers always * feature a Valve Buffered FX Loop, ensuring you won’t lose any of your amp’s mojo.

* Almost always, Terror Bass features a solid state FX Loop

Instantly Playable

While digital modeling is pretty incredible, we believe the costs outweigh the benefits in comparison to solid-state circuitry like in our Crush range. We design amps that are instantly playable; so you’re straight into making music, not tone hunting.

Flexibility in the Design

Versatility is often overlooked which is why our valve amps (except the AD30) have wattage switching options built-in. That means you can tailor your amp to whatever situation you’re playing, be that in the studio or on stage, you can always hit the tonal sweet spot without the need to make ears bleed

Summing it up

With so many different options out there, choosing the right equipment for your setup is a bit overwhelming. Our equipment is designed by the working musician, for the working musician.

Simply put, gear that handles anything you can throw at it.

As the summer rolls on and we get perilously close to the end of festival season, Orange Amps seems to be sending me to a varied and diverse lineup of festivals. This week was the Cambridge Folk Festival, which has been on the same site since 1965! Being from this part of the world, it is amazing in my 31 years of existence I have never set foot onto these fabled grounds. So I thought I would dive right in and see what the Folk Festival had to offer.

Nick Mulvey on the Second Stage

So many activities!

Whether it was the diverse lineup or the mixture of workshops and talks, you would find it very difficult to run out of things to do at the Cambridge Folk Festival. When I arrived on site on Friday the second stage was in the middle of a Yoga session and I had just missed the morning T’ai Chi session in the well-being area, I had forgotten my yoga mat anyway. And when you feel like some music the 4 music stages give you everything from bluegrass through to folk and country.

Site to see

The festival is set in Cherry Hinton Hall Park which is 15 mins away from the famous city centre. It was really strange to walk through the suburbs of Cambridge and then for the rows of tents to appear to announce the entrance to the festival. It felt like finding an undiscovered part of the city, with smaller stages dotted around the campsite, attendees have a wide array of choice. The well-being area is surrounded by a lake and duck pond to add to the positive vibes. The music stages are close enough to be within a short walk from each other but not too close to create noise issues.

Jack Broadbent on the second stage

Relaxed and friendly

Most festivals I end up at through work there are people tearing round the site trying to see every band on the bill and drink their weight in beer (just like to say there is nothing wrong with this, drink safely guys!) But it was nice to see people relaxing while the bands were playing and having a dance and generally having a lovely time. People were in early to set up their camping chairs and then spent the rest of the day enjoying the acts. This doesn’t mean to say no one was moving, far from it, the ceilidh dancing was in full flow throughout the festival, don’t worry I didn’t have a dance.

The Bands

Lucinda Williams on the main stage

Having never been to this festival I was overwhelmed by the talent of the performers and how diverse the acts were. One moment you could see blues slide player Jack Broadbent shredding and then the next, Jose Gonzalez multi-layered nylon string guitar playing. There were so many highlights, Graham Nash’s set on Friday, Lucinda Williams show on Saturday and Imarhan’s desert blues on the Sunday. I could name another 10-20 acts, it really was that good!

“I’ve had the same two Rockerverb MKII 100 heads and cabs since 2011. Not once have I had any problems with my Orange gear. I’ve never even blown a fuse or a speaker. My band, Evanescence, tours all over the world, playing in different climates from cold and dry to hot and wet. My gear has been shipped back and forth across the Atlantic many times, been in cargo holds in the belly of airplanes across the pacific and always performs when the time comes. It’s more reliable than just about every piece of gear that I’ve ever had!!!” Troy McLawhorn of Evanescence

“My Orange Rockerverb 50 mkIII has been all over the country, dropped, had beer spilt on it, kicked, plugged into shady power outlets and is still here to break my pinkie toe when I accidentally kick it in the studio!” Ryan “Fluff” Bruce (Guitar Influencer)

“I’ve been touring with the same head and cab for over 800 shows with Hero Jr. and I’ve never had [knock on Orange wood] a problem. My rig sounds as killer as it did when it came out of the box 7 years ago.” Ken Rose of Hero Jr.

“These new Oranges have been the most road worthy amps I’ve ever known.  I started using an OR 100 and Rockerverb 100 in 2015.  The only thing that took out the OR 100 was playing it in 2 different rainstorms.  It survived a brutal rainstorm at Voodoo Fest in New Orleans but another storm in New Jersey killed it. The Rockerverb is still going strong 4 years later.” Tim Sult of Clutch

“I use the AD200 MK3 head and OCB410 cabinet, an absolute unit!!! The tone I get from the amp is unreal, depending on the artist I’m playing for I can change it up between a warm vinyl like tone or beef it up so that the bass is absolutely pounding!” Mandy Clarke of KT Tunstall

“My Terror Bass amps have been absolutely rock solid since I got them. I’ve never had a single problem. The same was true when I was playing the AD200B heads. Despite being 200 watts of sheer tube-destroying power, they never once needed repair work. You can drop them from waist height and they always survive (which has, thanks to various stagehands, happened more than once unfortunately).” Glenn Hughes

Drenge are a three piece band from Derbyshire, Eoin and Rory started the band in 2010 and in 2015 invited Rob formerly of Wet Nuns to join. Rob has been playing Orange for the last 2 years and is currently using the AD30 and the PPC212V cabinet. Rob explains how this combination gives him the perfect platform for his many pedals and how he was impressed to the versatility of Orange Amps.

Hey I’m Rob, I play with Drenge and I play Orange.

My first forays into guitar kind of started in the 90’s and sort of followed the influence back through time. Fugazi especially I found were the first band that I came across where they just plugged straight into amps and there was just one guitar, no pedals or particularly complicated going on rig wise. It was just that sound and using the volume control for your effect on the actual guitar, which is still something that I still do now.

I guess I had an idea in my mind as to what Orange amps sound like, definitely like the whole of the stoner rock, as much as I love that whole sound, it’s really not the right sound for this band. So I guess it did kind of surprise me when I got it and started playing with these guys, how much it didn’t have to do that sound, it didn’t have to do the thing, it is capable of lots of other guitar tones. It sounded fuckin’ great and really fuckin’ loud and what more do you want really?

I’d like to use both channels and do a switching thing because I like the sound of both channels but I have just been on the cleaner voiced channel. I’m kind of using pedals to do the aggressive stuff at the moment but I hope to explore the channel switching at some point very soon.

I’d always prioritise sound, having something that sounds excellent and you are not constantly worried it is going to give up on you, stop working, it’s a really well made thing, I’m very happy with it.

So I’m playing this Ampeg, it’s like a reissue of an old 60’s guitar that Dan Armstrong made and it’s made of plastic. This is like the Gregg Ginn of Black Flag guitar, he played one among many other cool people. From the guitar we go into a Boss tuner and then into a Octave TC which there is some tunes where on the recordings its double tracked so its two guitars. One is playing a riff and one is playing the riff but an octave above, so that just does those bits.

Then I have a Mellotron pedal that again there are some tunes on the record that have Mellotron parts and rather than switch over and play them on keyboards, we just have that. That is for a full wet, strings and choral stuff. After that it splits, for that i’m using the Orange Amp Detonator, which is ace it does exactly what its supposed to, it does it very well and not noisy, it’s great. After that we go into a Stone Deaf PDF which I use as a set wah sound, kind of honky lead solo stuff, to cut through and I have that on a pretty brutal setting which is pretty fun. Then the Rat, its like the most distorted that I go and then there is a Micro Amp as well which is after the amp crunchy setting, the Micro Amp is the next stage, then the Rat shreds your face off, then PDF does the shred your face off but with a very specific mid range.

Then we have the Melekko delay pedal which is ace, it’s quite an unconventional sounding delay, it does a lot of high oscillatory feedback stuff which is cool and then it goes into this guy. So I’m on Channel One which is the less aggressive, less gainy channel, pretty loud and it’s just full bass, quite a lot of mid and the treble is rolled off just a bit because of the brightness of this Ampeg. So that is the base of the whole thing and there are plenty points in the set where it is just that, it’s not like there is always pedals on. There is quite a few bits and bats where there is just the amp and I do quite like to use the volume control on the guitar to full on volume on the guitar to get it quite aggressive and then if it wants to be really clean will roll it off a bit.

For this months ‘Voice of’ campaign we’re mixing it up a bit to focus more on the actual amps instead of the artists using them like we’ve done in previous months like ‘Voice of Country’, ‘Voice of Rock’, ‘Voice of Acoustic’ – you get my drift. Check out our selections for ‘Voice of Quality’ below.

Rockerverb MKIII

The Rockerverb series, consisting of both 50W & 100W heads as well as a 50W combo have been a customer favourite since it first launched back in 2004 and have since proved itself to be a workhorse of an amp suiting a whole variety of genres. A decade and a half after first being released, the Rockerverb has been tweaked and improved using customer feedback as well as lead amp designer and technical director Ade Emsley’s brilliant mind, which has led us to the most recent Rockerverb series, the MKIII. The biggest change in tone from the MKII to the MKIII is the clean channel, as the MKIII allows for a lot more headroom and chime than it’s predecessor. However, fear not, it still has the warmth and vintage feel to it as well. The MKIII has also been given the same foot switchable attenuator as the Dual Dark and Thunderverb, and it works a treat.

A few artists using Rockerverb MKIII:
Andy Powell, Wishbone Ash – Rockerverb 100 MKIII
Stevie Wonder – Rockerverb 50 MKIII Combo
Matt Pike, Sleep, High on Fire – Rockerverb 100 MKIII
Marcus King, The Marcus Kind
Jim Root, Slipknot – Rockerverb 100 MKIII
Andreas Kisser, Sepultura – Rockerverb 100 MKIII

Custom Shop 50

Our Custom Shop 50 is a carefully hand wired head operating at either 50w in class AB, or 30W in class A. Switching between the two allows you to adjust the tone from a sensitive chime in class A to a warmer, fuller sound in AB. The responsive EQ section works well with the Gain control, making it a smooth transition going from round and warm, to bold and snarly. The Custom Shop 50 is a prime example of a British amplifier, and perfect for good ol’ British blues.

A few artists using the Custom Shop 50:
Scott Holiday, Rival Sons
Wolf Jaw
1000mods

AD200

Truls Mörck, Graveyard

Another classic of ours is the AD200 bass head, which, as the Rockerverb, we’ve improved and tweaked our way to the current MKIII. Even when blasting out at max, the AD200 remains clean and punchy all the way. The amp is loaded wit four 6550 valves pushing the 200W of power which generates an enormous sound, which also means it generates enormous weight, but isn’t that the price we pay for solid valve amplifiers? A classic Orange ‘plug and play’ amp.

A few artists using AD200 MKIII:
Glenn Hughes
Geddy Lee, Rush
Truls Mörck, Graveyard
Tom Petersson, Cheap Trick
Steve Micciche, Every Time I Die

PPC212V

The PPC212V, which is our first ever vertical cabinet, is built using birch plywood and installed with  two lightweight Celestial Neo Creamback speakers to make it as light as possible – one of the lightest 2 x 12 speaker cabs around, actually, as it comes up at just under 20 kilos. However, fear not, the lightness of the weight does not compromise the heaviness of the sound, you still get the Orange excellence.

A few artists using PPC212V:
Rob Graham, Drenge
Mary Spender
Todd, Mobile Deathcamp
Bad Day Blues Band
Roascio RCM

The all new, re-designed Terror Bass has arrived and it sounds better than ever. With an all valve front end, the Terror Bass is a 500W hybrid bass amp with a valve preamp and solid state power amp, making it closer to the sound of our flagship AD200 than ever before.

Some of the top bassists have made the switch to the Terror Bass. Here’s what they think about this amazing lunchbox-sized piece of kit:

“This amp is wicked. It’s so damn good. The wirey sound and the gain blow me away. It’s enabled me to get a lot of frequencies on the bass I haven’t heard in a while. Sometimes small is better. The Terror Bass is the greatest amp I’ve heard in a long time.”
Glenn Hughes


“The Terror bass amp is cool because it adds a lot of warmth, it adds a lot of detail, it kind of allows me to shape what i’m doing and give it its best possible presentation. A cool feature about the Terror bass amp that stands out to me is the clean switch, it basically allows the cleaner end of the approach to really sing. When I’m playing clean or when I’m playing my bass six, kind of on the higher strings, I still want there to be a lot of warmth. I don’t want it to start sounding too much like a guitar and this amp has really been instrumental in getting across what I want to get across.”
Sergio Vega of Deftones, Quicksand


“I played the original Terror Bass for years. The new one is even better. It’s the only bass amp I want on stage with me!”
Richard Turner of Blackberry Smoke


“The first thing I noticed about the Terror Bass was the tone that I could get out of something that was that small. I was completely blown away by it. Second, the portability. I remember ETID going on tour and a bunch of people being like:

‘What’s that? Is that head you’re playing out of?’

‘Yeah, it’s a bass head.’

People were shocked at how much tone and power you could get out of it. Then I remember six months later, almost every single hardcore band we toured with had this head.”
Steve Micciche of Every Time I Die


“Our sound guy actually told me that I’m not allowed to use anything else!”
 Grutle Kjellson of Enslaved


“With the Terror bass I have found reliability and tone. It’s just flawless in every way.”
Dan Cunniff of Boston Manor


Reading Festival – Sunday – 26th August

“The controls of this amp are very easy to use, there is just a bass, mid, treble, which I like. I never really mess around with graphic EQ’s and stuff like that, so it’s perfect for me.”
Josh Finerty of Shame 


After a mere four years of working freelance for Orange I decided it was time for me to make an attempt of getting one step further, to second base, you might say. ‘Can I pretty please have a monthly column where I write about everything music related, and give it a cool Lester Bangs sorta name?’ I was holding my breath waiting impatiently for the reply; ‘Let’s give it a go.’ Shit, so I’m doing this – a monthly column of me sharing my thoughts on whatever, but what do I call it?! Then all of a sudden, there it was, clear as day; ‘Ramble On’ – it’s perfect! I landed on this name as I, well, talk a lot, and the Zeppelin song is an absolute banger.

Growing up I knew Led Zeppelin from my dad’s record collection, to me they were one of those epic bands from way back when, when rock ‘n’ roll was still new, and giants walked the earth – there was no one like them, except maybe Black Sabbath and Pink Floyd. All three giants from lost times that helped shape music the way it is today. I never dreamt in a million years that I’d ever get the chance to catch any of them live, well, Zeppelin for obvious reasons, that ship tragically sailed and sunk on the 25th of September 1980 with the passing of John Bonham. 

Ozzy, photo by Fin Costello

However, I’ve managed to see Robert Plant twice, first with Alison Krauss in 2008, then second at the iTunes festival at Roundhouse in 2014. My heart skipped a beat both times as I cried myself through ‘Black Dog’ and ‘Babe I’m Gonna Leave You’ – how could I be hearing these songs played live? I’ve also seen another quarter of Zeppelin in the flesh with John Paul Jones playing with Seasick Steve, where he played a variety of instruments alongside bass, some of which I’d never seen before and to this day am still unaware of what were. Obscure to say the least! 

I’ve somehow also managed to catch Black Sabbath twice before it all ended (although not with Bill Ward, gutted!) – first time in 2014 with Motörhead (which again for me was a major childhood dream come true!) and Soundgarden supporting, not knowing the importance of what I was witnessing and the end of two eras to come as both Lemmy and Chris Cornell, two such massive figures within their own genres, passed away within the next couple of years.

Pink Floyd

Last summer I also got to see Pink Floyd’s Roger Waters, my Virgo birthday brother from another mother; I’d been obsessing over Waters since watching his ‘In the Flesh’ DVD at 13, and being gifted Floyd’s ‘Wish you Were Here’ for Christmas that same year. Fast forward a few years to finding ‘Live at Pompeii’ and the damage was done, hell, you don’t get that stuff these days. The stuff they use to have, do, well, we probably don’t get that these days either… Anyway, I’m loosing track as I often do, hence the name ‘Ramble On’ (works well, huh?), which brings me to my next point of the fact that I have yet to see Jimmy Page perform; the ultimate guitarist, and the final boss of rock ’n’ roll legacy. Maybe just break out that Earls Court dragon suit one last time…?!

Despite being fortunate enough to have caught these incredible artists decades after it all begun, I can’t help but speculating and dreaming about how it would have been to see them in the glory of their heyday, when Black Sabbath spent more money on coke than recording, Pink Floyd exploring psychedelics and visuals at the UFO club, and Led Zeppelin melting minds with four day long versions of ‘Dazed and Confused’ while taking on the title as ‘the greatest band in the world’. Until time travel’s invented I’ll just watch ‘The Song Remains the Same’ religiously instead, and ramble on.

Hailing from Saskatoon in Canada, the Sheepdogs have been playing their unique brand of country infused blues rock since 2006. The band came to catch up with Orange at Black Deer Festival just outside of Tunbridge Wells. Jimmy had just played the Main stage on the Sunday before sitting down with us to chat about how he started playing guitar and how the AD30 is perfect for his playing.

How did you start playing guitar?

I guess I was inspired by my dad’s good friend at the time, he is a fantastic guitar player. He played an old 65′ Telecaster and it was just the most beautiful guitar, he is a very soulful player and him and my Dad would play and sing, that was kind of my first inspiration to play.

What were your influences when you started playing?

I listened to Hendrix, Cream and Zeppelin, all that kind of stuff, Free! Traced the routes and got into the blues pretty heavy. So I was emulating people like Robert Johnson, Charlie Patton, Sutton Hose and then into 50’s and 60’s with Muddy Waters and Howling Wolf. All that kind of stuff.

How did you join the band?

It’s kind of funny, they had a guitar player leave about 2/3’s of the way through an American tour and they were in a bind. I was good friends with their guitar tech at the time, he bet a weeks wages that I would be a good fit. So they called me up and gave me all the material the night before. I stayed up the night before and learnt everything I could as best as I could. We did one rehearsal and then we did the rest of the tour and I have been with the guys ever since.

How are you finding the festival so far?

Saw Kris Kristofferson, that was pretty amazing! That’s been kind of a dream of mine to see him, I’m a big time fan. It’s a gorgeous festival, beautiful landscape and a laid back vibe, its nice.

What’s your set-up on stage?

It’s not too complicated, I use an old Les Paul, pedal wise an MXR dyna comp for soloing, playing slide and for sustain overall. I have fuzz pedal, a delay, a tube screamer and tuner, I play an Orange AD30. I just love the sound of those power tubes, so I was looking for something that was kind of along those lines but a little more controllable and a lot more volume, so I could get more headroom. It was the perfect amp.

What do you usually look for in an amp?

It has to be reliable and versatile, I have a simple setup, I am a volume control player. So I need an amp to be nice and gainy, but I can dail it back on the guitar and it can be shimmering clean too. In order to have that you have to have headroom otherwise your tone gets too compressed. So there is kind of a happy medium between gain and headroom, I find that amp does it perfect.

What makes the AD30 so suitable for your genre?

It’s that EL84 breakup, it just does something different than any other power tube. It’s a little tighter, a little more top end response and the clarity suits that music fine. It gives me a lot of control, the top channel is great but its pretty gainy for what we are doing, so I use the bottom channel all the time. I will dial it back for different tunes and change the gain structure.

What else makes the AD30 so great?

It sounds fantastic but it’s also super reliable. We do roughly 200+ shows a year and I’ve used mine for the last three years, I have just had to change tubes. That is just super reliable and does exactly what I want it to do every night.

How does it feel being part of the Orange family?

It feels great, love representing fantastic amps that make me sound better!