One of the biggest things that many bassists have done in the past ten years (at least) is to double on keyboard, for that synth bass sound. And while the knowledge of the piano/keyboard is something I hope everyone has the chance to learn at some point, it does make it a bit harder when you’re carrying gear to a gig. Thanks to the recent release of the HotSawz algorithm for the Eventide H9 stompbox, you can save a trip or two for load-in.
About the HotSawz
HotSawz is a pitch-tracking, monophonic synth engine for the H9 stompbox, that includes six stackable sawtooth oscillators, three modulation sources and four assignable destinations. Basically, you can make anything;thick and funky sub-bass tones, synth horns or crazy effects. And, with a global mix function, you can make it as subtle or heavy as you want. With all this info in mind, I grabbed my Hilton Workhorse (read: active bass with super hot signal) and Fender Precision (read: tradition!) and got to work.
Bring Me the Funk!
It was apparent immediately; the synth sounds are crazy! What I love with synths and filters is that you really “play the effect,” over just setting and forgetting. The way you attack your strings on the bass is going affect the timbre and tone that you get from the HotSawz. With the Hilton, I found myself tweaking the settings more to compensate for the hot signal of the bass. I didn’t have that issue with the output of the Precision; it was plug-and-play. All of the parameters are easily controlled through the H9 Control app on your phone, making it incredibly convenient and quick to adjust parameters, hear them in real time, and then download them to the stompbox.
The HotSawz algorithm brings some more options to an already amazing piece of hardware in the Eventide H9 stompbox. For those bassists looking for even more tonal options – without the problem of learning keys AND transporting them – the HotSawz is just what you’ve been after.