Sweetwater Announces The Beach Boys Studio Effects Line

Collaboration with Benson, JHS, and Keeley seeks to capture some of the band’s most iconic sounds 

Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

In advance of Disney’s highly anticipated documentary The Beach Boys, Sweetwater has announced an exclusive line of effects in collaboration with JHS, Benson, and Keeley. 

The three guitar FX legends have each developed brand-new products intending to highlight the band’s groundbreaking contributions to recorded music and allow fans to bring a piece of the Beach Boys’ studio magic home with them. 

In Sweetwater’s video announcing the release, JHS’s Josh Scott explains that he, Chris Benson, and Robert Keeley set out to “make some stuff that ties back to the Beach Boys’ legacy, sonically, technologically… we needed to do things that sounded like the Beach Boys.”

Let’s kick things off with a look at JHS’s two contributions, the Punchline Bass Station and the Good Vibrations Chorus/Vibrato pedal

Courtesy of Sweetwater

The Punchline contains the keys to Wrecking Crew bassist Carol Kaye’s iconic tic-tac bass tone in one convenient hub. It’s got a fully analog amp sim, plus drive, compression, and EQ controls to dial in a punchy, compressed bass tone that immediately transports you back to the 1960s, but also “will fit every modern bass application.”

Courtesy of Sweetwater

The Good Vibrations, meanwhile, emulates a bulb-driven Uni-Vibe pedal, commonly used in the 1960s to create the classic vibrato sound heard on countless surf rock records. 

Courtesy of Sweetwater

Keeley’s offerings include the California Girls 12-string Simulator pedal as well as the I Get Around Rotary Simulator. The former grafts the 12-string guitar sound into a pedal via an octave effect, plus chorus and “echo” (slapback) for added studio magic. The I Get Around simulates a Leslie Rotary speaker, as heard on the recording of the same name, a whirling tremolo effect that features a speed adjustment knob plus a smattering of drive for good measure.

Courtesy of Sweetwater

Finally, Benson comes with a heavy hitter in the Surf’s Up tube-driven spring reverb and optical tremolo unit. The attractive blue tolex-covered amp-like enclosure contains Benson’s take on Fender’s original spring reverb from the 1960s, with the same tube schematic as Fender’s, only, minus the actual amp part. Noise-free and pedal switchable, the Surf’s Up’s extremely limited run of only 66 units is already, sadly, spoken for.

Courtesy of Sweetwater

For those of us who spend most of our time chasing golden-era analog 1960s tones, Sweetwater’s announcement is a revelation. We only wish we were among the lucky few who got their hands on a Surf’s Up.

For everything else, head to Sweetwater while supplies last.

For the rest of you… at least we can watch the Beach Boys work their magic soon in the upcoming doc. Watch the trailer here!

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