A Sweet Chorus-y Echo

I’m really into continuous effects lately. (As opposed to discrete: clean/DISTORTION!!, normal/PHASER!!, et c.) I want to smoothly swoop through a sound’s range as I play.

I’ve always loved the Strymon El Capistan, but I’ve been treating it as kind of a special effect, for a special occasion, rather than a go-to echo for regular use. But today I hit upon a magical setting that gives me what I want and can use all the time: a combination chorus and chorus-y delay. Here are the settings:

for the El Capistan as a chorus-y echo
Settings for the El Capistan as a chorus-y echo
Tape HeadSingle
Mixsomewhere shy of 12:00
Tape Age7:00
Repeatssomewhere shy of 12:00
Wow & Flutter3:00 or beyond!

Crucial to this setup is the expression pedal, set to control the Time parameter. (I use a Roland EV-5.) With the expression pedal all the way down, Time is minimized and you get a thick chorus. (You can reduce the Wow & Flutter and/or the Mix to make it less thick.) Use the Tap button to set the tempo or ease forward on the expression pedal, and it gradually becomes a wow-and-flutter-y echo.

Here’s an audio sample. I first play the part dry, then again with El Capistan doin’ its full-on warble. Then I increase the Time and turn it into an echo. Note space-cadet pitch shifting, too. (If you hear a little distortion, that’s because I have my MXR Sugar Drive on all the time, set to barely distort when my volume pedal is on max. Continuous sounds!)