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EarthQuaker Devices

Akron, Ohio's Jamie Stillman was road-managing the Black Keys and playing a bunch of bands when one of his prized guitar pedals, a DOD Overdrive/Preamp 250, broke. Curious, he opened it up, only to discover there wasn't a whole lot in there. Stillman then found the schematic online, and had an epiphany. "It just totally made sense to me," he remembers. "So I decided to build a new one.

EarthQuaker Devices was founded in 2004, but it wasn't until 2007 that the then one-man company would release its first full-production run pedal: the Hoof fuzz. It was inspired by Black Key guitarist Dan Auerbach's Russian Big Muff, and it immediately had pedal forums buzzing with its musical tone. With interest flooding in, Stillman quit his job, hired an employee, and turned his basement into a full-time pedal production line.

In 2011, the company moved out of the basement to an abandoned factory, and then to a vacant warehouse. It's here that the locally-sourced workforce of music lovers hand-build every single EarthQuaker Devices pedal, and it's this commitment to quality that means every device the company ships carries a lifetime warranty. They also come with some of the more creative names you'll find on a pedal, hovering "somewhere between reality and being totally cryptic".

EarthQuaker Devices Plumes pedal, plugged in on the floor
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