“It belongs in a museum!” - Harrison Ford as Indiana Jones, Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981)
Bowman Audio Endeavors is a brand that knows the tonal treasures of the effect pedal world. Founded by James Bowman of the punk band Against Me!, these creations come together with a keen eye for quality and a vision of adventurous music making. Is it an overstatement to call the Fortune and Glory a treasure? No, not at all. If you're looking for a lean and refined boost pedal, no need to keep searching, you’ve struck gold.
The BAE Fortune and Glory is a MOSFET-based clean boost pedal. Fashioned to provide some extra low end to a signal, the Fortune and Glory is a responsive and expressive pedal that makes quick work with any guitar tone. The pedal rolls through levels of crisp volume boost that ranges from a clean boost with some slight breakup to a fairly low-gain overdrive. Anywhere you land with the Fortune and Glory, the tone is something to write home about.
The Fortune and Glory circuit takes inspiration from the ZVEX Super Hard On boost pedal with some personal touches from Bowman. The pedal rolls through levels of breakup and drive as it is gradually pushed. Adjusting the knob will result in some crackling noise, but rest assured, this noise is normal when dealing with a circuit of this specific design. No need to worry!
Starting at lower settings, the Fortune and Glory’s clean boost bumps up the volume of your signal in a very natural way. Think of it as an extension of your amplifier’s volume when plugged straight in. Your amplifier will get some love as its natural tone comes alive. The boost provided by the Fortune and Glory interacts with the tonal character of your amplifier to make it sound like you, only enhanced. Maintaining signal integrity is a strength of the Fortune and Glory as the pedal does not disrupt your own unique sound. Use the Fortune and Glory to pump up single coils or humbuckers for an overall enhancement of your guitar and amp.
Lower on the dial, the Fortune and Glory enhances picking response and articulation for extended licks and solos. As the level is ramped up, you’ll hit some organic breakup while setting the dial around noon. The breakup produced by the Fortune and Glory makes your cleans slightly rough around the edges – perfect for some warm, tube-like overdrive. If playing the pedal has already won you over but you are still looking for that extra something, pushing the effect to its limit is sure to do the trick. Straight into your amplifier, the Fortune and Glory maxed out will summon a smooth overdrive that gels easily with not only your clean signal but with some additional drive, reverb, or whatever you’d like to pair with it. The effect pushed 100% makes your rig glow in a great overdriven “always on” kind of way. The crisp clipping the pedal produces makes your tone noticeably warmer, fuller, and more articulate. This is perfect for kicking your amp into further overdrive or for adding a degree of tonal nuance to your cleans. Working well on either end of the dial, the Fortune and Glory is effortlessly compatible with any tonal task you throw at it. It’s a treasure trove that must be uncovered.
The tonal topography you can travel with the BAE Fortune and Glory is a sight (and sound!) to behold. Its responsive and articulate voice is easily compatible with a spectrum of guitar tones, genres, and styles and is sure to find a spot in your rig. Whether you’re an effect minimalist or an aficionado, the Fortune and Glory makes an excellent addition to any collection. The Fortune and Glory is a great pick for any fan of clean boost and breakup to sit pretty in a mix or to strum along solo. With the Fortune and Glory, that endless tonal quest becomes quite literal, rather quickly. It’s a treasure for today and one for the history books (rolling boulders and booby traps not included).