Hello and welcome to this week's article!
Today we're going to talk about the Wah Wah, and more in general about the envelope filters!
Envelope filters are basically Equalization filters that can work both automatically, through fixed or dynamic time and amplitude parameters, or can be controlled manually, to bring in and out in real time certain frequences from a sound.
The Wah Wah, which is the most famous application of an envelope filter, is a foot-controlled filter that takes in or out certain treble frequences, while a note is sustained.
The name Wah Wah is onomatopoeic, which means that the device recreates the sound effect produced, in facts if we apply it to a trumpet or a distorted guitar, the result is similar to the modulation of vowels made by a human voice (in facts one of the most famous wah wah pedals is called "Cry Baby").
One of the musicians that contributed to make the Wah Wah pedal famous is without any doubt Jimi Hendrix (impressive how this artist has been taken by us many times as an example for the use of effects: the truth is that after half a century, the guitar effect standards set by him has never really gotten old), with songs like "The Burning of the Midnight Lamp", or Guns'n Roses guitarist Slash, with classics like "Sweet Child o'Mine".
Another artist that has built his fame also around the sound of his wah is Kirk Hammett of Metallica.
There are many different types of Wah, that changes according to how many and which frequences are filtered, but the idea behind them is always the same.
Talking about the envelope filters in general, instead, we can see a massive use of them in todays electronic music, for example artists like Skrillex shapes their tone by filtering in and out certain frequences from their lead synths, in time with the song to emphasyze the groove.
- Samsara Cycle Audio Wahzi: an interesting autowah effect with many editable parameters.
- Mtg Wahwactor: a very simple wah emulator, Voice Controlled.
- Coyote Electronics WahGT: a wah emulator that can also be controlled with a midi pedal.
- Fretted synth WAHT: a wah designed for the guitar.
- GSI EFFECTIZER: a single vst that features all the modulation effects, included the wah.
- Admiral Quality Naive LPF: a midi controllable envelope filter.
- Topaz Dyna Filter II: an AutoWah and Dynamic Filter.