Zorx Electronics
Eurorat - Funque Mod

Eurorat - Funque Mod

by Ellison Wolf

Truth be told, though I tell everyone that I’m from Kalamazoo, Michigan, I am in fact from Portage, Michigan, one town over from Kalamazoo. Why would I do this? Well, one town sounds funky and memorable, and the other…kinda sounds like it is. Growing up [ahem] Kalamazoo there was a pretty great music scene and it’s the birthplace of quite a few musical instrument companies, so when I got into music I scrimped until I could afford a Gibson Les Paul, which was originally made in Kalamazoo [the original building where they were made, with Gibson spelled out spelled out on the smokestack can still be seen near downtown—at least the last time I was there]. My strings? They were GHS Boomers from nearby Battle Creek. My first distortion pedal? Well, if you know your music/geographic history, then you’ll know that Pro Co, the makers of the famous RAT distortion pedal were also from Kalamazoo. If I could have procured a vintage Gibson tube amp I would have had a total hometown setup. Even my cables were local, again from Pro Co. Who would ever say I wasn’t really from Kalamazoo with this setup? I was a homer through and through. I even had a “Yes, there really is a Kalamazoo” bumper sticker on my car. I was—and—remain a Kalamazooian. At least in heart and spirit.
Like most electric guitar players, I’ve had too many distortion, fuzz, buzz, overdrive, etc. pedals to name, but the RAT has always had a soft spot in my heart—being my first—even if it didn’t always have a place on my pedal board.
Funque Mod’s EuroRAT is a recreation of the beloved pedal in Eurorack form, from the circuit down to the 80s-ish styling on the front panel, so I was interested to see how the RAT sound as a whole would translate to modular, as sadly my RAT passed on many years ago, having drowned in a flooded basement, never to distort again. Not my fault.
Funque Mod designed the circuit as faithfully as they could and even dropped the +12 volts that Eurorack runs off of down to 9 volts before bringing it back up to modular level again. The controls are familiar to anyone who’s ever seen a RAT: Distortion, Filter, and Volume. One input, one output, a tiny LED shining through the faceplate, and that’s the grand tour. Nothing else to it.
The Eurorat has the RAT’s sonic character down pretty well. For melody lines, bass lines, kick drum it sounded buzzy as it should, and pretty nice. I ran some other percussive elements as well and with everything cranked I got some nice droney buzz in the background. Actually, I wish I could have harnessed just the buzz, or separated it from the output somehow as it alone was also quite nice. I love me a good buzzy drone. I can see a lot of applications where using the Eurorat in a patch, whether as a main sculpting component or just to buzz up part of the rhythm or something, and I really liked using it with snare, to get some nasty sounds. Perhaps not particularly versatile, but the original RAT wasn’t either, and that’s kind of a hallmark of a classic. It’s got distinction.
I do wish there was a bypass switch to go from distorted to clean [and vice versa], and all the better if this was CV’able. During testing I noticed that the Distortion knob had almost no effect from 12:00 to fully CCW, giving the Distortion a very narrow overall range of variance, and this was verified when I put it through my Mordax DATA’s spectrograph to see if there were any added harmonics while I turned the knob in that range.
There are a lot of storied guitar pedals out there and it’s nice to see the RAT get its due in modular format. While there’s not a lot of nuance to the Eurorat, it’s kind of a one trick pony…er RAT, it’s a solid trick and if you’re a fan of the RAT, you’ll probably be a fan of the Eurorat, too.

4 HP +12v 14mA -12v 1mA
Price: $135