Monday, June 13, 2005


Well, while Jackson was off buying records, seeing live music, and earning a living, I've been holding down the fort.

Acquiesce's record continues it's slow climb toward greatness, or at least completion. 3 of the tunes are going to be finished to coincide with their gig (as headliners) at the Bowery Ballroom on July 7th. While we are going to continue to work on these and the rest of the tunes for the record, we're also going to send them out to be mixed, and we'll see whose mix wins...

Our competition is a little studio called Electric Lady, which is currently owned by this guy named Ric who used to be in some kind of 80's band, and apparently doesn't have a lot of time to update his website. The studio was built for some guitar player in the 60's, a lot of people think he was English but he wasn't, and now he's dead. It's the home of the only purple SSL. They have more gear than we have, so I guess their mixes might sound better, but we'll wait and hear.

In Smoke and Mirrors news, the past week has been an upgrade to the live room. New paint (including a new white floor) and carpet for the drum riser, to complement the new wall and additional flooring. No complaints from the neighbors yet. The big change is that we now have the ability to vary the acoustics of the room, from live to dead to combinations in between. Everything had to be pulled out and put back in, and starting Saturday it was back to work on Acquiesce. Cutting guitars with a Mesa Boogie and a Fender Deluxe, I've started using my old omnidirectional mic, the first mic my original recording partner (Matt, a drummer) and I bought in the late 80's. We tried some new vocals last night, and started preparing for the transfer to ProTools (the only format the Lady will accept, and make sure you label everything correctly!).

The omni mic is a whole blog unto itself. In short, it doesn't differentiate between sounds arriving on axis and off; it "hears" everything around it equally, so it's ideal for picking up room sound. It's also less susceptible to sibilance and has no proximity effect. Great fun! Used as a second mic, way up in a corner of the room, blended in with the direct mics on the guitar amps, it can give close mic'ed sounds a little space, 'though I probably overused it and will be chastised by other, more knowledgable engineers.


At 1:52 PM, Blogger Jackson said...

I certainly won't chastise your effort to get better sounds, as was evident when I was holding down the fort during initial tracking that I like to throw a lot of sounds up and see what sticks, hell for subsequent mixing, but good good fun. Sorry Lou, I know it's work and all, but I can't help myself sometimes.
Any cahnce you'll sit in at any mix sessions at Electric Lady? That sounds like good fun too.

At 1:57 PM, Blogger Chrispy said...

I don't know if I'll be allowed in. I don't think any members of the band will be there, and I'm not sure if me sitting behind the mix engineer saying "Can you give me a little more 100k" is going to help anyone, although it would sure be fun.

"Hey, can you make that guitar sound like Hendrix? You must have that effect here, right?"

At 2:30 PM, Blogger Jackson said...

I beleive that effect is called Eddie Kramer.

At 3:51 PM, Blogger Chrispy said...

Do they still have him racked up somewhere?

At 5:08 PM, Anonymous Tony Alva said...

Bah! I say to Electric Lady Land. It's the men/women behind the board that counts and if I were a talented musician I'd take S&M over the Lady any day of the week.

Wait a minute, did you say Purple SSL console? Well, OK gear matters a little. Now that's what I believe George refered to as "Gear Porn".

At 1:59 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was inside Electric Lady once in the mid-80s. Pretty damn cool. Though they weren't there at the time, some big band, whom I can't remember now, was recording, so their flight cases were everywhere.

I wish I could go there knowing what I know now.


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