Review: Meris Ottobit Jr.

Once upon a time, a couple of former Strymon and Line 6 folks got together and started making 500 Series rack modules under the name Meris. Eventually they started producing pedal versions of two of the modules. I saw one of those pedals, the Ottobit Jr., GM_Awarddemonstrated back in January by Nick Reinhart and Juan Alderete on the great YouTube channel Pedals And Effects. It immediately struck me as potentially a perfect multi-effects pedal for Guitar Moderne readers. As luck would have it, in February, Nick introduced me by email to the Meris people who were kind enough to send one when the review models became available. I dove in and here are the results.

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Spotlight: Reid Karris

The journey Reid Karris took to become a player of prepared guitar echoes others who attack the instrument with implements from the kitchen and hardware store. Attempts at “normal” playing left him unsatisfied, until he found his true musical self in a combination of tabletop and worn guitars. His lengthy description of his process and his music was worth presenting in full, as it offers valuable insights to anyone considering abandoning genre guitar for the wilds of experimentation.

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Avi Bortnik’s Cool iPhone Apps

Not just a superb guitar player and mainstay of John Scofield’s Uberjam band, Avi Bortnik  is an app developer. His metronome app, Time Guru, is designed to improve your time by gradually removing the crutch of its own beats, while his delay app, Echo Pitch, offers some new twists on an old theme. Voxbeat allows you to create drum patterns using your voice and phone. Check them out. Sorry this took so long Avi.

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Glitch Guitar

This video is to accompany my Electronic Musician column “Electronic Guitar.” The July column is on Glitch Guitar and the video features the Red Panda Particle, the Electro-Harmonix Canyon, and Ableton Live’s Beat Repeat plug-in. The issue is on the stands now and the article should be available online next month.

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