Blink 182 has always had a great signature guitar sound thanks to Tom Delonge. His tastes in a guitar sound are really quite simple and don’t require much tampering to achieve it either.
Finding a good sound for yourself can really make the difference between how well you can control your own instrument. Follow these 7 tips to get a distorted guitar sound similar to Blink 182’s Tom Delonge.
1. Play a Fender or other similar mid-tone-dominant guitar.
Tom Delonge is known for playing fender guitars throughout his career. They’re cheap, easy to learn, and provide lots of mid-tone. If you don’t want a fender, other mid-tone dominant guitars can provide a similar punk rock sound.
2. Stay away from high-distortion amplifiers.
Marshall amplifiers have been the masters of distortion for years and almost everyone uses them. However, they provide a little too much distortion for something that Blink 182 would use. Use a mid-level distortion or country-style amplifier like Fender or Mesa Boogie.
3. Don’t use metal-zone or other types of distortion pedals.
Again, too much distortion can ruin a good guitar tone. Metal-zone pedals provide lots of white noise and aren’t suitable for those clean tones that Tom Delonge creates in each Blink 182 song.
4. Keep your guitar effects to a minimum.
Blink 182 doesn’t use a lot of effects on their guitars, yet. If you want to play by the book, turn down your reverbs and put away your delays. All you’ll need is your simple tone of a guitar and amplifier.
5. Don’t “scoop the levels” on the amplifier.
“Scooping the levels” on your amplifier means you’re boosting the high and low ends while pulling the mid-range way down. This is never a good thing to do. With experience, you’ll begin to realize how important it is to keep everything relatively close.
6. Use an adequate amount of mid-range on your amplifier.
Tom Delonge’s guitar tone is very mid-range based. His amplifier doesn’t have much high-end and his guitar isn’t a metal axe of any kind either. Use that mid-range knob to boost your tone into a more punk feel.
7. Use a high-compression pedal.
Have you noticed how much awesome attack that Delonge gets on his strumming when Blink 182 plays live? That’s probably due to a compression pedal. A nice compression pedal can really kick the power of your guitar up a couple notches.
Finding a well-rounded guitar tone is difficult to do. Blink 182 has a very nice balance between a clean and distorted tone to give just enough edge to their songs. Put these tips into effect and make sure to use your own personal touch on the mix.