An Alex Lifeson signature pedal has arrived much sooner than we expected: you can get the Lerxst By-Tor Drive pedal right now

Lexrst By-Tor Drive
(Image credit: Lexrst)

The very recent announcement of Alex Lifeson's Lerxst line of signature tube amps alluded to the probability of more gear following – including pedals. We just never expected it would follow this soon, but here it is: the By-Tor Drive pedal.

"By-Tor is a British-voiced amp in a box pedal designed to capture the sound of the 50-watt Lerxst Omega in pedal form," says Michael McWhorter, founder of Mojotone– the collaborators with Lifeson on this run of signature gear. 

Lexrst By-Tor Drive

(Image credit: Lexrst)

This is great news for those of us who can't stretch to any of the Lerxst amps, but the By-Tor – named after fan-favourite Rush song By-Tor And The Snow Dog – could be a go-to boost and overdrive pedal combo with wide appeal beyond Lifeson fans. 

"The Lexrst By-Tor is a compact, pedalboard-friendly version of the Omega that promises to replicate the head's same intensity and growl that the tube amp is known for," states the announcement. "The By-Tor is capable of jumping from light and crunchy drive sounds to tube-like overdriven chaos with the touch of a few controls." 

Those controls are the familiar Drive, Tone and Level, and with a similar setup to the Keeley D&M Drive but with shared knobs, the order of the Boost and Drive sides can be switched with a mini toggle. It all looks refreshingly streamlined.

"The By-Tor pedal sounds awesome and looks really scary," says Lifeson. "If you like awesome, scary stuff you need one of these. Or two!"

The pedal is available now from Reverb


(Image credit: LERXST)

The By-Tor Drive follows the news of the Omega tube amp's return as a 50-watt head following a limited 2012 collaboration between MojoTone and Lifeson for Rush's Clockwork Angels recording and touring cycle. It's also joined by the 30-watt Chi combo and head option with matching cabs. 

Who knows what might follow in the next chapter of the Lerxst story. 

Rob Laing
Guitars Editor, MusicRadar

I'm the Guitars Editor for MusicRadar, handling news, reviews, features, tuition, advice for the strings side of the site and everything in between. Before MusicRadar I worked on guitar magazines for 15 years, including Editor of Total Guitar. I've currently set aside any pipe dreams of getting anywhere with my own songs and I am enjoying playing covers in function bands.