I'm back on the on-again/off-again search for a decent overdrive pedal. Something that doesn't bugger up the guitar's tone or dynamics but will shove the amp that extra bit harder for widdly-waggly moments without that awful tone-in-a-box great-in-the-woodshed, crap-in-public racket you can get from most distortion widgets. It certainly can be done (SRV and YJM certainly both use/d this approach), though sheer volume will always, I suspect, remain a significant contributor.
Current contenders are a Burford Sonic Ranger and an original Marshall Guv'nor. The Burford has a very clear edge here, it's like giving the axe a shot of adrenaline whilst the Marshall sounds like an effects pedal (if admittedly a good one). However, and here is the rub, the thing appears to be incredibly noisy. I may have to learn to live with this if I can't find something else that gives similar benefit with rather less noise.
I've been trying to find a YJM308 to try but these appear to be discontinued (I thought they'd only just come out, but I can tend to be somewhat behind the times where gear is concerned). If anyone knows where I can get one, please let me know... Next up therefore is a Boss SD-1 and possibly the Monte Allums mod for it. If that doesn't do the job then I guess I'll have to try a TS-9, which for some odd reason I'm rather trying to avoid. Anyone got any other suggestions?