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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.

jonny-hall-heck

Photo: Jennifer McCord

Hey dude, who are you and what are you about?
Hi, I’m Jonny Hall, the one with the bigger beard in HECK. I play guitar and bleed on things a bit.

How would you describe HECK’s music and live performances to a stranger?
Musically, HECK are an intense beast. We have always seemed to thrive off relentlessness. It’s like that moment when you have that secret scream at the mirror to purge your frustration, except very public. The live shows are essentially an arena for everyone to sack off inhibition and join us in accepting that most of real life is bollocks, ‘so let’s do whatever the fuck we want for an hour’. It’s chaotic, extreme and powerful, and it’s fucking fun.

You released your debut album ‘Instructions’ earlier this year, how has life been ever since?
It’s been difficult but rewarding. Self releasing the album means there was no one to do our dirty work for us, so we plunged headfirst into a world we knew nothing about and we’re thankfully still afloat! We’ve done some amazing tours and played to thousands of incredible people. We’re frankly amazed by the response we’ve had, people seem to have really ‘got’ the album, bizarrely. The only downside is that everything awesome that you do only makes you hungrier for more. I’ll never be completely satisfied.

Can you tell us a bit about your history and experiences with Orange?
When I was a nipper just learning to play orange amps seemed like some unobtainable relic of guitarness. Pro’s played Orange, I couldn’t play it too, as I was clearly not good enough. I played about with a few different amps in my youth but nothing ever gave me the huge sound I’d been after. I wanted something with balls. Preferably several sets. The more superfluous the better.

When I started jamming with Matt (the smaller beard in HECK) he had a Rocker 30 running into a PPC212. It sounded to full that, despite the fact that my rig was considerably more powerful than his, I genuinely couldn’t hear my guitar due to it being made to sound so thin by his. I immediately applied for a credit card because clearly, owning an Orange rig was more important than any hint of financial security. Totally worth every penny of debt.

What’s your set up?
I currently run a Rocker 30 into a PPC212 and PPC412, drive channel only, with a ProCo RAT as a ‘death’ pedal before it. When i kick that in, it sounds like the amp-apocalypse.

Back to the band – if you were all zoo animals, who’d be what animal, and why?
Paul Shelley would be a walrus. He’s mighty, girth, stubbly and wise, with a touch of class and an air of authority. The rest of us would be the shitty pointless grubs they feed to the lizards in the reptile house. We’re there out of necessity.

You recently did a massive co headline tour with Black Peaks around the UK and Europe, how is it being back home after a month of madness on the road?
It’s rubbish. It’s difficult being in a touring band as it’s like getting post holiday blues every time you get home, but from the best holiday you’ll ever have, where you feel like you’re actually achieving something with your life, but it’s actually your job, that you love, and you want to do forever. Then one day it stops and you find yourself sitting in your pants eating microwave Tesco Value macaroni cheese and dry bread, watching six consecutive seasons of Friends because you can’t be bothered to click ‘back’ on Netflix. I do get to see my girlfriend though, which is nice.

Top ten songs played in your tour van:
Talk Dirty – Jason Derulo
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