MWFX is a brand of independently designed effects pedals for guitar, keyboard and bass established in 2008 and dedicated to making soulful, hand built, only original effects. It is the creation of Matt Warren, a guitarist and pedal builder with a BA Degree in Music Design.
Matt was inspired by Lovetone pedals, Electro Harmonix and Danelectro back in 1999 at age 17, whilst playing guitar in local bands, mostly listening to Blur, Radiohead, Bernard Butler, Pavement, and dreaming of a music career.
Whilst taking 4 A-levels and an Art Foundation course, Matt’s spare time was split between photographing bands as Live Editor for local music fanzine Weekender and heavily researching unobtainable pedals on the MusicToyz website. Realising most were out of his price range he acquired broken pedals, and a Melos Funky Filter, Marshall Shredmaster and Watkins Copicat were picked up second hand from the local free ads paper.
Repairing what turned out to be highly respectable effects led to a self taught understanding of schematics, helping him get accepted to a Music Design course in 2004 writing music, studying music tech and building pedals.
Matt qualified in 2006, and in 2008 completed a BA Degree in Music Design at Bournemouth University under Prof. Stephen Deutsch. The first two years were spent building an eccentric pedalboard of Practical Electronics projects and Craig Anderton circuits, before graduating into converting synth effects for guitar and writing music for film as part of his degree.
During education he realised that he could sell pedals to classmates under the guise of Cake FX and earn money repairing and servicing tape delays, Matt then set up MWFX in 2008. The intention being to sell only original designs and ideas. And make them in wood. Like the original Tone Bender.
Starting out selling the 8Bit (arcade emulator), Wave Machine (wave shaping fuzz), Tape (saturator compressor) and Buzzby military component fuzz, the range expanded in 2010 to other effects like the PWM emulator, Hard Sync fuzz effect, Russki germanium fuzz, a multi wave shape Tap Tremolo, Bitrate sample rate reducer and the Judder repeater.
Many of these ideas were the first of their kind and had some influence on other builders in later years.
The Judder in particular quickly got picked up by Kanno at 9volt in Japan who bought the rights as sole Japanese distributor at his shop near Tokyo and hundreds were built back in 2010. Made out of wood. It remains the precursor to many loop based glitch and stutter effects.
In 2012 a pitch based Tremolo was added to the range, as well as the Retreat pedal (a plectrum triggered attack decay effect) and plans for Glitch and exhaustive variable clipper Distortion. Up until then the effects were point to point wired, occasionally using veroboard, but highly labour intensive.
Since 2014 much of the time has been taken up building the Judder pedal in blue metal cases for gigging musicians around and about the world.