Wahzoo BY GARY GUZMAN
The Voodoo Lab Wahzoo is one of the most
versatile wah pedals available. It does what a
standard wah does, very well I might add, while
giving you more user control and extra tonal
options. It’s like three wah pedals in one, really.
Vintage mode is like a traditional wah pedal
with a classic Clyde McCoy vocal tone. A brief
history lesson: Clyde McCoy was a famous big
band trumpet player who was known for his
muting technique. Vox tried to approximate his
sound by creating the first wah pedal, which
McCoy endorsed. Wahzoo’s vintage mode is
based on that classic sound with its wide sweep
and vocal-like qualities.
before it closes. When the treadle is down
in the “toe forward” position, the filter is
reversed. It is normally open, and the velocity
of your playing determines how much the filter
closes. I played rhythm in the normal “heel”
position, and then switched to the “toe forward” reverse position for leads. This produces
a different variation and sound of the wah that
is a cool effect, and the combination of open
and closed filters makes for interesting and
innovative use of the wah.
In this mode, you control the wah with the
treadle, just as you would with a traditional
pedal. You can even adjust it to your preferred
responsiveness. You can also adjust an internal
trimpot to control how high the treble position is, with either a warmer tone or a brighter,
edgier one. Also, the bypass isn’t enabled
by pressing forward on the pedal, which is
another feature I really like. I can’t tell you how
many times I’ve stomped on a wah pedal in a
live situation and played the guessing game of
whether I turned it on or not.
Step Wah mode opens up even more
possibilities for wah sounds, creating
rhythmic patterns by automatically
jumping through different treadle
positions. The result is a wide variety
of tones and rhythms that I’ve yet to see in a
wah pedal until now. The patterns and tones
are reminiscent of an arpeggiator in a synthe-
sizer. Moving the treadle up or down easily
controls the tempo of these step sequences,
allowing for faster rhythms than your own foot
could ever pump on the treadle.
You want complete control of
your wah sounds and are not
afraid to experiment.
The Step Sequence knob allows you to select
four different presets of user programmable
patterns which are very easy to create.
Auto Wah is voiced like a traditional wah. This
mode turns the Wahzoo into an automatic,
foot-free wah pedal. The effect is controlled by
how soft or hard you pick and the wah follows
along nicely, regardless of what tempo you’re
playing at. Auto Wah mode is ideal for playing live, since it enables you to wander freely
around the stage.
The Wahzoo is an analog pedal with true
bypass, and now includes a Tap Tempo feature
that’ll have you busy creating dreamy sound-scapes and rhythmic wah patterns for hours.
An external footswitch can be used to control
the tap tempo and/or switch between modes.
Each pedal is handmade in the U.S. and the
build quality is excellent.
You’re in love with your traditional
wah pedal and refuse to cheat on it.
There are two controls: Sensitivity and Normal/
Reverse Envelope. The Sensitivity knob allows
you to dial in that “sweet spot” and the wah
effect will adjust to the velocity and output
of your playing. The Normal and Reverse
Envelope adds even more variety to your
wah tone. With the treadle all the way back in
“heel” position, the autowah filter is closed.
The velocity of your playing determines how
much the filter opens, as well as the time
The Wahzoo is definitely the most versatile
wah pedal I have played. It’s as if they took my
wish list of everything I’ve ever wanted in a wah
pedal and more, and put it into one unit. With
its wide variety of sounds and controls, the
Wahzoo will not only make your guitar cry, it’s
likely to make other guitarists (who don’t have
one) bawl, too.
Head online to hear sound samples of the Wahzoo in action at