Designed in collaboration with Baltimore-based composer, violist, and visual artist Liz Meredith, the Gold Standard ($119 direct) is described as a “stripped down” version of the 24. It certainly has all the untamed sizzle that the 24 is capable of–and more–and flies the flag of its buzz-saw sound proudly. There is practically no option here for anything but madness. If you want a totally jacked-up tone, this is your altar. It spits and it sputters and it sounds broken–although you can dial back the insanity to actually hear notes clearly if you start getting a bit timid. The Volume knob provides a significant increase in level (about 12dB)–which is helpful if you want the more extreme sounds of the Gold Standard to cut through a band mix–and, with everything set just right, you can get almost endless sustain. I don’t say this lightly: Take care. This pedal may have the power to destroy the world.
The Platano Verde ($89 direct) is perhaps the most “normal” fuzz in the VauxFlores line. You just get a Tone and a Volume control, and the basic sound is bright, buzzy, and fizzy. It’s a good fit for psychedelic ramblings, industrial noises, and just any riff that you want to scream out of a mix with an intense and unconventional frazzle. Johns says he based the Platano Verde on schematics he found in Brazilian electronics magazines from the 1970s. Another factoid is that this is one of the VauxFlores pedals with artwork actually made by a human being–the Costa Rican artist Paulina Velazquez-Solis.