Old Blood Noise Endeavors BL-82 Chorus Review

Take a dive with us into the wonderful world of the new Old Blood Noise BL-82 Chorus, which, as you would expect from OBNE, does far more than your average chorus. 

Old Blood Noise Endeavors are no strangers to introducing new and unique effects into the world to make it a better and more creative space for all of us noisemakers. In late 2022, they brought us the BL-44 Reverse Variable-Clock Reverser. Its simple design features three knobs and one slider, and its purpose is to throw whatever you send into it in reverse. Ranging from smooth, subtle, silky textures to chaotic reverse repeats, this pedal was a behemoth release due to its extensive time-bending capabilities while being extremely user-friendly. Fast forward to April 2023, and the crew at OBNE have birthed yet another pedal in the same vein as the BL-44, and we couldn’t be more in love with this beautiful addition to their family of sonically special devices. Of course, we’re talking about the Old Blood Noise Endeavors BL-82 Chorus.

Simplicity In Design Is A Beautiful Thing 

Laid out in the same fashion as the BL-44 Reverser, the BL-82 Chorus controls are plain and simple while delivering seemingly endless modulation manipulation. The Mix controls the amount of desired effect coming through your signal. The Volume control sets the overall output level of the effect, and the Feedback control covers changing the effect’s intensity and the number of repeats from the delay (we’ll talk more about the delay shortly). These three knobs work in tandem with the Variable Clock Slider. With just one in and one out, 9V DC power, and killer artwork thanks to Brandy M. Patterson, the BL-82 is house in a small enclosure with a soft touch footswitch, taking up almost no pedal board real estate while making quite a big impact. 

Old Blood Noise OBNE BL-82 Chorus

When One Delay In A Chorus Pedal Isn’t Enough 

So far you’ve been reading about this chorus pedal but also seeing the words “delay” and “repeats” and you might be wondering – “why?” Well, Old Blood Noise is great at sneaking in as much modulation as they can where you might not expect it. For example, their Excess V2 Distorting Modulator has delay, chorus, and fifth effects within the left-hand side of its brain in addition to its harrowing distortion on the right. Within the BL-82 Chorus, there are two delay lines being modulated by opposite synchronized LFO’s, combined in parallel. How these delays are translated into the end result of the chorus effect are dependent on the minute tweaks of the control knobs and Variable Clock Slider. To put it plainly, this chorus can articulate luscious, shimmery, recognizable “standard” like chorus sounds, but can also go entirely off the rails into the realm of heavily saturated, experimental chorus madness. Since there’s so much range within this tiny device, we decided to talk about a few of our favorite settings we’ve found so far. 

The Sounds Of The 80’s Are Back, Baby 

  • Mix: 2 o’clock 
  • Feedback: 10 o’clock 
  • Volume: 12 o’clock (or unity gain) 
  • Clock: 40% 

If you’re looking for a chorus sound that you and anyone else might immediately connect with and recognize, this would be it on the BL-82. Think of your favorite 80’s montage music video with chorus effect layered over everything it can be, but without being overpowering. We’d define this as mild to medium flavored chorus with a quick, single quarter note slapback delay. 

Midwest Emo or Jazz Fusion? You Decide. 

  • Mix: 11 o’clock 
  • Feedback: 1 o’clock 
  • Volume: 12 o’clock (or unity gain) 
  • Clock: 80% 

Weirdly perfect for “scream-yell-your-heart-out-over-alternate-tuning-guitar” songs and noodley jazz fusion comp’d chords or solo’s just the same. You’ll find the chorus is present and on the bright side of things, while also showing quite a bit of depth. The delay timing almost emulates a rotary-speaker in a subtle fashion. 

Satisfy Your Sci-Fi Spooky Side 

  • Mix: 4 o’clock 
  • Feedback: 3 o’clock 
  • Volume: 12 o’clock (or unity gain) 
  • Clock: 20% 

You could be the most minimalist single-note player on the planet and still score a horror flick with this darker side of the BL-82 Chorus. As the signal leaves the output, a quick quarter note delay repeats. Following that, a dotted eight note repeat jumps in and begins to degrade in pitch and tone, with then yet another quarter note repeat continuing in degradation after that. And so on, and so on. Expect plenty of teeth-grinding tension that could make even the bravest soul wince at these spooky sci-fi sounds. 

Warning: Do Not Plug In Your Phase Shifter Underwater. Do This Instead. 

  • Mix: 1 o’clock 
  • Feedback: 5 o’clock 
  • Volume: 12 o’clock (or unity gain) 
  • Clock: 80% 

Imagine the BL-82 swimming underwater. But it would have to have arms to swim. So, we’ll give it giant swords for arms. This deep-diving chorus sound has a sharp attack, cutting through the mix hard, and then followed by what sounds like a Boss PH-3 Phase Shifter having its best day ever - swirling and twirling with the submerged wet chorus beneath the sonic waves. 

Old Blood Noise Endeavors BL-82 Chorus: Final Thoughts 

These are just a handful of options we’ve discovered in the short time we’ve had to play with the Old Blood Noise Endeavors BL-82 Chorus. What’s nice is that we can all take comfort in knowing that each time you plug this pedal in and change the settings in the slightest way, there’s a strong chance that some entirely new sound will come out. And don’t for one second think that the potential instrument pairings with this pedal end with just guitar. Bass, beats, synth, and whatever else you can think of will work wonderfully with this little box of dimension-defying chorus. Honestly, we can’t wait to see what you all do with it. 

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