What Delay Pedal Does Justin Chancellor Use?

Justin Chancellor, the extremely talented bassist for the famous progressive metal outfit Tool, is known as one of the best bass players in the world. This isn’t just because of his technical skill, however. His carefully crafted bass sound is part of what makes his bass playing so easily recognizable, and renowned around the world as well. 

But what effects does Chancellor use to capture this unique sound? More specifically, what delay pedal does he use for it? Well, Chancellor likes to use the Boss DD-3 Digital Delay as his primary pedal for his delay effect, especially when it comes to his live performances. 

That’s all well and good, but why should you care? What makes Chancellor such a great bassist to emulate. Does he ever use any other types of pedals? What other gear does Justin Chancellor use to create his specific sound? Read on to find out the answers to these questions and more! 

Who is Justin Chancellor?

Ernie Ball: String Theory featuring Justin Chancellor of TOOL

As mentioned earlier, Justin Chancellor is the bass player in Tool, an American progressive metal band. Chancellor himself, however, was raised in England and is of Norweigan and English descent. 

In England is where he started his first band, Slice of Life, and later joined his second band, Peach. 

After Tool released their second album, their former bassist departed, and they recruited Chancellor to join. At this point, he moved to Los Angeles to join the band full time. 

After first settling in LA, Chancellor and his wife helped manage a music store in Topanga, California. The store, which specialized in both music and literature, was said by Chancellor to have “shaped and changed” both he and his wife. 

What kind of delay pedal does Justin Chancellor use?

Justin Chancellor Bass Rig- Tool "Know Your Bass Player" (1/2)

It is not often you see bassists in articles such as this one, as they not only use fewer effects but often blend into the background of bands. Chancellor’s talent shines through, however, and his willingness to explore new territory and get adventurous with the bass guitar leads him to use effects in ways that other bassists tend not to.

This is certainly the case for delay. Where many other bassists might not want to muddy up the song with a delay effect, Chancellor sees an opportunity to get creative and get creative he does. 

In order to create his delay sound, he uses a boss DD-3 digital delay pedal. This affordable and easy-to-use delay pedal is extremely popular among guitarists and bassists alike. Its sound quality is generally quite good, and it has 3 delay time modes to give it some versatility of sound as well. 

Chancellor’s delay can be heard clearly on the song “Disposition,” if you’re trying to get your ears on what some great bass delay actually sounds like!

What other gear is Justin Chancellor known for using?

Tool Bass signal chain- new - by Toolmybass

Chancellor doesn’t only use delay pedals, though, and there’s a ton of other gear that makes him sound the way he does. 

Chancellor uses a few different basses, including the Wal 4 string, a Music Man Stingray, a Gibson Thunderbird (although far less frequently), and a Warwick Streamer.  His main bass is the Wal, which gives him the midrange punchiness he’s famous for. 

For amps, he tends to use a Mesa Boogie brand amp, but sometimes strays off of these for a Gallien-Krueger bass amp. 

As far as other effects pedals go, Chancellor is known for using a few. For instance, his DigiTech Bass Whammy is used on a number of Tool tracks, such as “Schism” and “Disposition” to harmonize or even go a full octave up. 

He also uses many other non-delay Boss brand pedals. These include the Boss CE-5 Chorus and the Boss BF-2 Flanger. These powerful effects are more for flavor and aren’t a part of his core sound, but they are still noteworthy as far as his effects pedals go. 

Finally, the MXR bass envelope filter is a unique and interesting pedal that many extremely popular bass effects that gives an automatic wah effect that leaves your basslines feeling a bit extra funky. 

Wrap up!

Justin Chancellor’s bass sound is extremely unique and quite difficult to fully emulate due to his use of many effects. However, his delay is a big part of this sound and is actually quite easy to capture. This is due to the affordability and ease of use of the delay pedal he uses, which is the Boss DD-3 digital delay.

Along with the Boss DD-3 digital delay, any of the gear listed above is a great way to start emulating the sound of Justin Chancellor’s bass on Tool records and Tool live shows. However, there is no substitute for practice. Make sure you watch videos of Chancellor playing and practice his bass parts to really understand why and how he plays the way he does. 

Andrew Bell

I don't think I'll ever stick to one instrument - but the great thing about life is you don't have to.

Andrew Bell has 90 posts and counting. See all posts by Andrew Bell