Kurt Cobain’s Electro-Harmonix Small Clone

Kurt started using this pedal probably around early 1990, just before the band started working on ‘Nevermind’. It’s unknown to what the extent the pedal was actually used on the record, and how much of the chorus effect was added during the mixing process, but nonetheless, this pedal was used extensively during the ‘Nevermind’ tour and therefore played a key role in Kurt’s sound.

Usage on Nevermind, Specific Tracks

First of all, in case you’re unfamiliar with what Small Clone does to the sound, this is basically what one would call a chorus pedal, and it creates a sort of a wobbly or shimmery water sound. This effect can be heard all over the ‘Nevermind’ – and paired with a Boss DS-1 distortion pedal, and a Seymour Duncan JB humbucker, is essential to Kurt’s sound from this period.

The specific tracks from the album on which the effect was used, are as follows:

  • Smells Like Teen Spirit – During the chorus and the solo
  • In Bloom – Most noticeable on the bridge part, just before the chorus
  • Come as You Are – Throughout the song
  • Drain You – Most noticeable during the intermission after the second chorus
  • Endless, Nameless – Throughout the song


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