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Orange amps has often been associated with heavy slow riffs, the type that knock the filings from your teeth and would blow the speakers in your car. This has always been something we have been very proud of, we make loud amps and we think they sound great. Our amps are perfect for a genre that spans from classic metal such as Led Zeppelin and Black Sabbath all the way through to the new boys of djent and progressive metal. But which amp works for each sub genre of metal? Well we are here to help!

Classic Metal

It feels a bit wrong to call bands like Sabbath and Zeppelin ‘classic metal’ but this is a way to show their older statesmen role in the genre. Basically if these guys had chosen another calling we all wouldn’t have a job or a record collection. So if you want to play like Jimmy Page, Orange has the amp for you, in fact he uses an Orange… see what we did!

The AD30 was used at the Led Zeppelin reunion show in 2007 (they were the single channel versions.) The current AD30 has two channels, channel one is cleaner, with channel two being the heavier channel, use this one for Page riffs!

Sludge Metal

Heavily influenced by Black Sabbath, sludge metal came about through bands mixing elements of doom metal and hardcore punk. What came from these two joining forces was heavily detuned guitars, lots of distortion and tempos switching from slow grooves to punk styled riffs. If this sounds like your thing then the Crush Pro 120 would be the perfect amp for you, none other than Kirk from Sludge Metal legends Crowbar uses it to create a wall of sound.

Taking inspiration from the Rockerverb 100, the Crush Pro 120 head is a solid state amplifier which delivers warm, rich analogue tone. Kirk started using one on the road and it has taken the place of an amplifier metal great Dimebag Darrell gave him. If this doesn’t make it the perfect amplifier for all those low tuned riffs, then we don’t know what will!

Nu Metal

In the late 90’s and early 2000’s this was the genre in rock, behemoths like Slipknot, Linkin Park, Korn and Limp Bizkit all came to the forefront of the music scene. Mixing rap, rock and metal elements they forged their own path, recently these bands have established themselves as some of the biggest rock acts in the world. Headlining every major festival Slipknot have become giants of the genre and Jim Root uses a Rockerverb to achieve his distinct, signature sound.

The Rockerverb was designed to be an amp for all genres and has been used by so many different players across its over ten year history. With two channels and four stages of gain it has become perfect for this genre. Not only does Jim Root trust the Rockerverb every night on stage but legendary guitarist Head from Korn calls the clean channel ‘buttery’.

Progressive Metal

Finally if you want to sound like a rock behemoth, then progressive metal is where it is all going off. Titans of the genre are Tool, Opeth, Rush and Mastodon and Orange has so many amplifiers that are perfect. The Brent Hinds Terror was built by men in mountains with googles (as told by Mastodon’s Brent Hinds) so it is the perfect fit for this genre.

The Brent Hinds Terror is a two channel, all valve, lunch box amplifier which was designed specifically to play Mastodon riffs loud. The bedroom/headroom switch makes bedroom practice a simple click of a switch, so nothing will get in the way of thundering riffs!

Brant Bjork is a legend of the stoner rock scene of the 90’s, he was the drummer in Kyuss, he played in Fu Manchu and he has released a string of solo albums to name just a few achievements. He came into the Orange cabin at Black Deer Festival to talk inspiration and the Pedal Baby 100 which he had just started using.

What inspired you to start playing music?

I grew up in the Desert in southern California, in a very small boring town, my folks would play stuff like Little Richard, Bo Diddley in the house, Ray Charles. Then the kids in neighbourhood were listening to Kiss and Queen but it wasn’t until I discovered The Ramones that I thought I might be able to participate and play music. I bought Ramones records and I pieced a drum set together and I taught myself to play to Ramones records and when I was done I picked up a guitar and taught myself how to play Ramones records. Then I never stopped.

How did the desert scene come about?

I think we epitomised the DIY movement in the earlier 80’s we took that to heart, cuz’ there was nothing and we were super bored, frustrated and some of us were super creative and we just went to work. Part of it was entertainment but I think it was needing to do something, the energy, skateboarding and punk rock were synonyms back then and we just created a scene. I mean we didn’t know it would become this, that is just an ironic twist that we so motivated to do something for ourselves because we realised no-one or nothing was going to happen for us.

Do you prefer playing solo or in a band?

I currently have a band that I have been playing with for years and we are very much a band, even though it’s under my name. I recorded my first solo record in 1999 called ‘Jalamanta’ and I did everything myself but that was mostly because of the urgency and financial reality of that moment. I didn’t have the time or the means to put a band together and being a guitar player and other things, I just did it myself. I am mostly more excited to play with my band as music is about interacting and communicating with other musicians.

Tell us about your latest record ‘Jacoozzi’?

Well ‘Jacoozzi’ is a record I recorded back in 2010 and then I shelved it for many years, then it just happened that Gabrielle who owns and operates Heavy Sycs Sounds records out of Rome, we decided to work together and it’s a perfect platform for what I do and the catalogue that I have. These things didn’t really exist when I first started in 99′ and even in 2010, they’re wasn’t the platform and infrastructure, so I feel really lucky that I have been around long enough to be able to inject my past into the present.

How did you start using the Orange Pedal Baby 100?

I have been touring for quite some time and I have gone through a number of amplifiers and being in the rock world, I think I speak for most rock musicians, we want that classic rock sound. It’s not easy to obtain and when you do have it, it’s not that easy to maintain and lug around. I have to credit my guitar player Bubba Dupree who is way more of a technical wizard than I am, I just follow his lead! He discovered the Orange Pedal Baby and he was like ‘I think i have found it!’ We now carry the sound on our backs and we now go where we need to and do what we need to do, the way we need to do it and it’s pretty much because of that thing.

How does it work in with your set up?

We have spent many years located the pedals that will get us exactly what we want and it’s deep! We obsess and we are fascinated by these classic tones that will never really be gotten but we have fun trying to get as close to it as we can in the modern context. I mean Hendrix was playing out of three stacks but he was also playing in front of 5000 people, we are all not lucky enough to be doing that every night but we want that sound, we don’t want that sound to die with an era. There is elements of purity that you want to use the same stuff but in the end, it’s the sound you want and I will rub to sticks together if it gets that sound that I want. This here it works perfectly with our pedals and allows us to be mobile and it’s a really awesome, malleable, it wants to help you!

It’s #VoiceOfMetal month and we’re focusing attention on our hard rocking, dope-smoking dooming, metal shredding artist Ambassadors. Here are a few of the metal albums we know for a fact were dripping in Orange tone, some with quotes from the artists themselves about how they used their amps.

Monolord – “No Comfort” (2019)

“For bass, Mika used an AD200B into an Orange OBC810. And just listen to the new record, the bass tones are thick yet clear with lots of string. Mainly he used the Dunable R2 model bass.

Rhythm guitars were put down with one OR100 into an 8ohm PPC412HP cab. The Dual Dark went in to a 90’s Orange cab at 16ohm.

For lead guitar we recorded the whole thing with the Black Country Customs Tony Iommi Boost (and sometimes a few other boosts/overdrives) through the Micro Dark and the PPC112. The tone is really angry in the low-mids and I love it.”- Thomas Jager

Slipknot – “All Hope Is Gone” (2018)

Jim Root had been using a Rockerverb 100 MKI for live touring before Slipknot recorded 2008’s All Hope Is Gone. However, that record would be the first time Root used an Orange for the majority of his guitar parts in the studio. He used the Rockerverb 100 MKI, along with a Diezel Herbert, for rhythm and lead. For the more subtle clean parts he used a Rockerverb 50 MKI 2×12” Combo.

SLEEP – “Holy Mountain” (1992)

Many people think the resurgence of Orange in the 90’s was due to Noel Gallagher using the amp in Oasis. That might have some truth to it, but before that came the liner notes of SLEEP’s Holy Mountain and the Orange OR120 guitar amp featured therein. Matt Pike famously used both the OR120 and a Matamp on Holy Mountain. For a whole new generation of stoner rockers vintage Orange amps became a must-have.

Beartooth – “Aggressive” (2016)

“The Micro Dark has honestly been an amazing tool for me in the studio. It is crazy how much air I can get moving between the speaker and the microphone with this head. It takes pedals great and can be as transparent or violent as you want. The reason I used it was for that pushed crunchy sound in the power section. The sheer amount of volume needed in something like a 50 or 100 watt head for that sound without an attenuator is unrealistic for a basement studio like mine. I’d be tearing the walls down. The Micro Dark has all that beef, low end, and air that I needed without being so loud it’s offensive to the entire neighborhood.

Tube screamer, eq pedal, micro dark through a 4×12… If you want the Beartooth guitar sound, that’s all you need.”- Caleb Shomo

Khemmis – “Desolation” (2018)

“We used a pair of Rockerverb 100 MKIII heads—one into an Orange 4×12, one into an Atlas 2×12 + 1×15—for all of the guitars on Desolation. On our previous records, Phil and I both ran dirt pedals into vintage clean amps for a big, raw wall of guitars. We began using the RK100 as we incorporated more complex chord shapes and single note lines in our new material, as they allowed those nuances to shine through without compromising our ability to be heavy. Not only did the Rockerverbs yield gnarly rhythm and lead sounds, the clean tones we dialed in were glassy and articulate.” – Ben Hutcherson

Chron Goblin – “Here Before” (2019)

“I think an overall goal for the production of ‘Here Before’ was to have it real and organic sounding, avoiding the use of digital enhancements as much as possible. There was a strong focus on capturing the organic input as opposed to editing the output with after effects, which you can hear in the guitar tone. I only used two of Orange’s finest guitar heads, Orange Rockerverb MKIII and OR15, and no other guitar pedals and very minimal after effects. We also made a conscious effort to only have a very moderate amount of gain and treble (opposed to all of the previous Chron Goblin albums in which they were cranked) to ensure the individual notes are very clearly defined, while still maintaining a vicious bite in the tone. For all clean guitar sections we used the Jimi Hendrix approach of rather than use a clean channel, we just turned down the volume and tone knobs of the guitar, which creates that warm, toned-down clean sound while keeping the gain channel settings intact. I think the result is a very organic and honest guitar tone throughout the album that we are super pumped about!” – Darty

“I went into recording the new album knowing the tone I wanted to hear. I tried out a couple basses, and decided to go with my stock 1972 Gibson Grabber (complete with a sliding pickup). After talking with our engineer and general studio jack-of-all-trades, I went with the AD200B with a relatively standard EQ – extra mid and treble, gain around 10 o’clock and master at noon). We re-amped it through the head and OBC810 … and VOILA!” – Richard

Monolord formed in 2013 and hail from Gothenburg, Sweden. The trio have been releasing sludgy metal since then and show no signs of slowing up. Their new album No Comfort was released to rave reviews in September 2019 and their live shows are legendary. Orange caught up with the band at Desertfest 2018 and chatted all things Orange.

Mika: We are Monolord.

We just played at the Roundhouse, it is amazing the feeling, really amazing when come on stage and see all those people in that huge venue, it’s marvellous.

Thomas: Now in London we have played Koko, we have played the Roundhouse and Royal Albert Hall, I don’t know what we do after this.

Mika: What is there left to play?

Thomas: I think most of ones that recognise Orange amps was the early beat club, the German music show where Sabbath and all the other bands played on Orange stuff. After that the Hellacopters used Orange from like early 2000 when it wasn’t that common to play Orange, not in Europe. Around then I bought my first Orange amp, been using it since.

Mika: For me I got my first Orange when I started Monolord but ever since I was a teenager I have been seeing those here and there. A good friend of mine had a dad who had a combo.

Thomas: I am using two full stacks, one on my side and one on Mika’s side. Mika does the same he has one bass rig on his side and one bass rig on my side. On my side I have an old OR120 and the standard cabs and on Mika’s side I have an OR100. Together with that I have the High powered cabs.

Mika: I have the AD200 on my side with an 810 and on his side we have an OB1-500 with an 810.

Thomas: It’s a bit loud!

It’s October and ‘Voice of Metal’, this might get heavy – which we do well, really well. This one doesn’t really need an introduction, so without further ado, let’s get to it.

Sleep and High on Fire, Matt Pike

Rockerverb100 MKIII
Crush Mini
PPC412

You’re probably not surprised we started this list with Matt Pike, are you? Our favourite shirtless hero and alien expert, singer of songs and player of electric guitars. Whenever Matt Pike comes to town we clear out our backline suppliers within a 50 mile radius before his crew gets given the most exhausting job any road crew has had since the days of Terry Bozzio touring with Frank Zappa, a heavy load (in – and out..). Matt Pike has pioneered doom and metal with his bands Sleep and High on Fire, and has become sort of a legend while still alive. His average Sleep set up, which is bigger than the High on Fire one, normally contains of nine heads, mostly Rockerverbs and Dual Darks, and twelve cabs. Haters will say they ain’t all plugged in, but haters are wrong. For those of you who’s ever been lucky enough to attend a Sleep show and have had the same religious out of body experience as oh so many others while watching Matt Pike tear shit up, you know they’re plugged in and turned up to 11.

Slipknot, Jim Root

Rockerverb100 MKIII
Signature #4 Jim Root Terror Head
Signature #4 Jim Root PPC212
PPC412

Shock rockers Slipknot have been twisting stomachs, turning heads and upsetting parents since the 90s, and Jim Root has been on the front of it all since ’99. Jim, who’s also known by his number #4 is a massive Orange fan, so much that we developed a head and cab for him, the Signature #4 Jim Root Terror Head and Signature #4 Jim Root PPC212. 

“I really like the creamy mid-range, big headroom, and ‘less is more’ philosophy of Orange amps. And all I have to do is plug straight into it with my guitar. That’s my tone.”
-Jim Root, Slipknot

Mastodon, Brent Hinds

Brent Hinds Terror
PPC412

Mastodon’s Brent Hinds might just have one of the most famous face tattoos out there, alongside Mike Tyson, a feature we included on his signature Brent Hinds Terror. Orange and Brent have a longstanding relationship of working together, we’re good to Brent, and Brent’s good to us – just look at all the stupid shit he agrees to do for us!

KoЯn, Brian ‘Head’ Welch

Rockerverb 100 MKIII

KoЯn were one of the first bands to pioneer nu metal and bring it to the masses, with guitarist Brian Welch playing a key role in how the bands sound developed, defining the nu metal sound of the early 90s.

“KoRn has always been in the game of matching different amp tones and blending them together in the studio. And Orange has always been right there in the mix! One of the reasons I started using Orange amps live is because I was able to get such a smooth tone for my clean channel on classic KoRn songs like “Falling Away From Me” and “Here to Stay.”
– Brian ‘Head’ Welch

Sepultura, Andreas Kisser

Rockerverb 100 MKIII
PPC412

The year was 1983 when Andreas Kisser attended his first gig, seeing one of his all-time favourite bands in his hometown playing his football team’s stadium. The band was KISS on their ‘Creatures of the Night’ tour, and that night changed everything for him. Picking up guitar, his initial goal was to be able to play ‘Stairway to Heaven’. Starting out with acoustic Brazilian music, Andreas swiftly found Black Sabbath, Judas Priest, Iron Maiden and Jimi Hendrix who’s vintage sound influenced him massively. When given the opportunity to play Orange, he instantly took it; 

“You can watch Black Sabbath’s ‘Paranoid’ video where both Iommi and Geezer Butler are using Orange, so when I was given the opportunity to try it for myself I took it straight away – Orange always just had that ‘aura of the masters’. Orange offered more of an organic sound then what I was used to, because what I really love is when I’m able to just plug in and play. There is a lot of demand for distortion and heaviness with Sepultura, and I was very surprised that the Rockerverb II had all of that. A warm, and heavy guitar sound that kind of seemed to expand a bit more.“
– Andreas Kisser, Sepultura