Here’s a fun little game to play with a fuzz pedal and an overdrive. Usually, most people like to stack overdrives in order of gain amount (i.e. low gain first, then medium, then blasting!!!!)
Reversing this, with a fuzz is a cool alternative, and here’s why:
Fuzz pedals are perhaps the best dirt pedals for dynamically controlling with your volume knob or touch. Especially germanium fuzz in my opinion. But they always have that distinct “fuzz” quality to them, which is great, but you always have that by default. When you rock a mild overdrive after the fuzz, it really smooths out the top end, resulting in pure creamy tone, that is amazingly touch-responsive!
David Gilmour does this trick with a Big Muff into a Butler Tube Driver. I think we can all agree he does this very well!
The OD gives all that midrange push, but due to the nature of most pedals, it rolls off the top end, while the fuzz gives you lots of meat to work with. It gives a ton of weight to the notes, but when you roll back your volume (especially with a treble bleed circuit engaged) it becomes the nicest transparent sizzle ever! All just with the volume knob! I find this really works best for single note leads (with single coil pickups), but chords can be awesome too! Experiment!
The signal chain used here is: Telecaster (with a strat neck pickup), into a Seymour Duncan Tweak Fuzz, into a Hermida Zendrive for mild overdrive, then an EHX Carbon Copy for delay, and finally a Fender Deluxe Reverb. Recorded into Pro Tools with an SM57. I start with the fuzz only, and then kick the Zendrive on at 0:26