The RAT & 7 Artists Who LOVE It

Rat Pedal
Photo credit Rat Pedal (photo Zack Nechvatal)
If you were born in 1972, 1984, 1996 or 2008, congratulations, you’re a RAT!  Acccording to the Chinese zodiac, people born in RAT years may be well-suited to become musicians.  So, we thought this a perfect time to spotlight artists who used ProCo RAT distortion pedals on some of their most iconic albums and live performances.What's more, 2020 will be a METAL RAT year (Excellent!) beginnig January 25th, 2020 through February 11th, 2021.

Anyone who played guitar in the 90s or has spent a lot of time in record stores back then is well-versed in the power of the pedal.  It's a sound that's still melting faces and dominating playlists all over the world.  

FOO FIGHTERS: When Dave Grohl recorded Foos' debut he leaned hard on RAT sounds, injecting the energy of a beefed-up full-band into the self-titled album he recorded by himself in 7 days! 

That first album and band turn 25 this year and they'll be celebrating with some seriously crazy s**t in their honor.


BLUR:  Woo Hoo!  Graham Coxon of Blur has almost always used two RATs for his dirty tones and we are so glad he did.


METALLICAKill 'Em All put Metallica on the map and this debut album had a lot of aspiring Guitar Gods seeking out the king of dirt pedals in the early 80s.


R.E.M:   Peter Buck cranked up the noise in the mid-90s with the debut of Monster, which featured the RAT on some of the most memorable tracks on the album.   Though disbanded, R.E.M. recently announced a deluxe reissue of Monster that you can pick up in any format you like.


COLDPLAY: The RAT pedal might not be the first thing that comes to mind when you mention Coldplay, but guitarist Jonny Buckland has used the RAT to add some flavor on a lot of the band's songs and heavily on ‘Violet Hill’. 


THE DARKNESS: Bringing the riffage and tounge-in-cheek lyrics since the early 00's, Justin Hawkins and company have been doubling up with the RAT on their albums and live performances.  The Darkness have just announced a Full-Scale US Tour to support their latest record, Easter Is Cancelled.  Go see them, you'll love it.


ARCTIC MONKEYS: Before Alex Turner ditched the guitar for his keyboards at the Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino, they pushed the RAT hard and made a statement with their debut Whatever People Say I Am That’s What I’m Not. Can't wait for them to make their return.


Still have some room on your pedalboard?  You can pick up most any version of the RAT pedal at

HONORABLE MENTIONS: Thom Yorke, Kurt Cobain, Thurston Moore, Juliana Hatfield, Yo La Tengo, Superchunk, The Raveonettes, The Offspring and too many others to count.