Does Edge use his gear optimally? - U2 Feedback

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Old 01-07-2007, 06:52 PM   #1
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Does Edge use his gear optimally?

Since I'm in a Radiohead coverband and had to try to get many different sounds of my gear, it got me thinking. Edge probably has more effects on the tray holding his pedals alone, then Jonny Greenwood. And that's excluding the two Twin towers full of rack gear.

Yet Jonny seems to get far more different sounds and mileage out of what he has. Somehow it seems wasteful to have expensive harmonizers, which can do many extreme and interesting things, in your rig just for shimmer. Edge might as well use a Verbzilla for that. Most people won't notice the difference and it frees up rack space.

Edge has enough gear to amaze us with the most insane woosh, whack and warble. Yet he seems to use most of it for just a few songs. Anyone of us using a single Pod, Boss or whatever is probably getting more tones and mileage then Edge. With the possible exceptions of his SDD-3000's and TC 2290's.
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Old 01-07-2007, 07:39 PM   #2
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And your point is?

He's the Edge, not coverband Edge. He's not just interested in getting the tones that he's always gotten, he wants the flexibility to continue to experiment with new tones and new ideas.

While there's no doubt that there are whole worlds of tonal layering that he's not using, chances are he's probably experimented with every option on most of those processors.

Think about all the different ways he's gotten his signature tones over the years. EHDMM to SDD3000 to TC 2290. SD-1 to custom-built rackmounted DM-4s. Ebow to Fernandes. AMS pitch shifter to Eventide.

And although there is no doubt a reason for him to bring his entire rig on tour, keep in mind that U2 are still out to put on a show, and part of the show is the Edge Mission Control. If people saw him standing there with a guitar, an amp, and a couple pedals, it'd be like catching Superman in a towel. Sure, he could still do what he does, but he sure wouldn't look as impressive to those for whom visual impressions are important.

Edge uses his gear optimally in that he gets the tones he wants out of it, and as long as he can afford to do it that way, I see no reason to make bones about it.

Does he use every preset or option on his processors? No. Has he tried them? Probably. Maybe he'll use some other patches and effects in the future.
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Old 01-08-2007, 05:18 PM   #3
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Edge is the lead guitarist for the biggest band in the world. he sort of has a responsibility to the band and to all the fans to get the best tones he can out of his guitars, no matter how many effects he needs. sure, Edge could use a Verbzilla for shimmer, but, being in the best band in the world, he's got to sound like the best. of course, Edge has backups for every rack processor, but that's reasonable. and of course there's the 'show' aspect of it -- it's so fucking cool to see Edge with his 19 guitars, 6 amps, and an innumerable number of switches and pedals and effects. he's the best because he has the best and never settles in his search for the best.
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Old 01-09-2007, 07:32 AM   #4
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I love The Edge.
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Old 01-09-2007, 09:10 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally posted by Loar
And your point is?

He's the Edge, not coverband Edge. He's not just interested in getting the tones that he's always gotten, he wants the flexibility to continue to experiment with new tones and new ideas.
My point is that he doesn't seem to be experimenting. Experimenting is realizing you have harmonizers and doing something more with them, instead of using them for a job a simple €100 pedal can do. His Eventide probably has hundreds of different tones in it and it seems like he's only using the crystal echoes patch. That's my point. Experimenting to the Edge to me seems to consist in getting a new toy every album, and then only using it the rest of his career to play the songs of that album.

Quote:
While there's no doubt that there are whole worlds of tonal layering that he's not using, chances are he's probably experimented with every option on most of those processors.
Probably years and years ago. Now, its just something he uses to play songs of that period with. To use the Jonny Greenwood analogy, he still uses the same pedals he had on OK computer, but he still tweaks out new sounds out of them.

Quote:
Think about all the different ways he's gotten his signature tones over the years. EHDMM to SDD3000 to TC 2290. SD-1 to custom-built rackmounted DM-4s. Ebow to Fernandes. AMS pitch shifter to Eventide.
Think of the even more signature tones he could wring out of what he already has.

Quote:
And although there is no doubt a reason for him to bring his entire rig on tour, keep in mind that U2 are still out to put on a show, and part of the show is the Edge Mission Control. If people saw him standing there with a guitar, an amp, and a couple pedals, it'd be like catching Superman in a towel. Sure, he could still do what he does, but he sure wouldn't look as impressive to those for whom visual impressions are important.
I'm not disputing him bringing the Twin Towers on tour. I'm disputing its usage off stage, in rehearsal and studio.

And I'm pretty sure most people wouldn't notice. When you are up front you can't see his fancy footwork. Up high you can't make out any of the details. And most people come to hear and sing along to the greatest hits. Besides, if he could get the same sound out of a single amp, a guitar and a few pedals he would be beyond Superman, he'd be God!

Edge uses his gear optimally in that he gets the tones he wants out of it, and as long as he can afford to do it that way, I see no reason to make bones about it.[/quote]

Who's making bones about it? I'm just musing on the fact that for somebody with two twin towers full of effect gear, I think he could be even more awesome. There has to be tons of interesting sounds in it. And if I were a producer for the next album I'd say: no new toys for you, but let's bring in your twin towers and lets fumble around for a few months to see what we can get. He has a friggin' Eventide harmonizer!!! He could be doing Brian May'esque multi-guitar harmonies and leads just for starts! And then warp it through the A3, or the Meatball, a reverse delay or whatever to something that makes it his own sound.

Quote:
Does he use every preset or option on his processors? No. Has he tried them? Probably. Maybe he'll use some other patches and effects in the future.
New effects? Undoubtably. New patches, the jury is still out on that.
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Old 01-16-2007, 11:57 AM   #6
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Not everything new is good. I believe Johnny Cash's guitarist said something to another touring guitarist once along the lines of, "What you're looking for, I already found." Radiohead has always been more experimental, and U2 has always been more mainstream. Neither is necessarily better, but it seems funny to suggest that just because a guitarist can do something, he should.
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Old 01-16-2007, 06:11 PM   #7
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But as a Dutch saying says, to stand still is going backwards. The key is to strike the right balance between mainstream appeal and pushing yourself to do things you haven't done before.

U2 was more experimental in the 90's. Just listen to Zooropa. Most guitars on that album don't sound remotely like guitars. And Radiohead has claimed U2 as an influence. The difference was that U2 tried to experiment while still sounding mainstream enough, whereas Radiohead just likes to be contrary.
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Old 01-17-2007, 01:40 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally posted by Muad'zin
But as a Dutch saying says, to stand still is going backwards. The key is to strike the right balance between mainstream appeal and pushing yourself to do things you haven't done before.

U2 was more experimental in the 90's. Just listen to Zooropa. Most guitars on that album don't sound remotely like guitars. And Radiohead has claimed U2 as an influence. The difference was that U2 tried to experiment while still sounding mainstream enough, whereas Radiohead just likes to be contrary.
If I went to a Radiohead board, and began a discussion explaining that Greenwood should find a good two or three signature tones and stick with them, because the Edge from U2 does it, I'd be laughed off of there.

To run a point-by-point comparison of Greenwood and the Edge is stupid. They're different musicians, and I really don't care if Greenwood is getting amazingly different sounds out of his gear or not. I don't like Radiohead, and I don't listen to Radiohead, so the sounds he gets don't impress me.

By that logic, as far as I'm concerned, the Edge is doing something right with his gear, and Greenwood and Yorke are horribly wrong in what they're doing.

But that's stupid, too. To compare them is worse than apples and oranges.

The Edge may have a bit of a techno-fetish going with all the gear, but if he wants to look for three different ways to get "shimmer" that's his prerogative.

The ultimate answer to your question is, yes, Edge uses his gear optimally. The optimal way for him to use his gear is whatever way gives him the tones he wants. He obviously does that.

And you can't possibly know what goes on in the studio. He may have explored every possible other option on each of his processors and found that he really doesn't care much for those. Some guitarists find that they have a single voice that they can write in. Edge has managed quite a few in his time, and if he's not coming out with any more right now, you can be sure it's not because he isn't experimenting.
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Old 01-18-2007, 10:20 AM   #9
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[singsong]Somebody got out of the wrong side of the bed today.[/singsong]
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Old 01-26-2007, 04:21 PM   #10
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Well personally i feel radiohead suck balls, if thats what pushing the "edge" (excuse the pun) with your equipement is, ill stick with U2
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