Pre’s and comps, again

In response to a TOMB question re whether the writer should purchase certain pre’s and compressors, I wrote:

If you intend to keep doing as you have done, then obtaining gear might be fun but not necessary.

Workflow-wise, if you like the sounds you have recorded, you may just be doing less adjustment if you continue to bring tracks to a “proper” studio.

Or not necessarily, and you may decide you don’t like the sounds you committed to, especially when using an arguably very colored piece of equipment like the UA stuff you list.

Finally, as a dedicated bedio-recordist, I can comment that the ISA1 is a very nice piece of kit, and unlikely to be “too much” in its coloration – I love mine.

Re the FMR gear, I really like the RNC as a clean and transparent compressor on vox, and the RNLA as a more colored compressor on vox and also on electric guitar amps.

Re Universal Audio pres, I prefer and own the UA110, more or less the solid state version of the 610 and use it on everything except drums (which I record on a Zoom R16); I also like the 710, which can be very flexible due to its combined S/S and tube topology. I have never been able to justify to myself the cost of the 610 or LA610, me, as so many nice pre’s and channel strips can be found for less than US$500 (used) – I use a Brick when I want an obvious and wooly tube sound for, say, DI bass or vocals, and a VC1Q when I want a channel strip (quickly set-up, convenient, nice tone and bright green!) or a Eureka (a total understated joy.)

Some obso’s on “Between …”

In answer to a question at lostO, I posted:

“It was surprisingly difficult to mix.

Snarl called the drums, “myjazzything” and so I used a classic jazz progression (Cm7-Dm7-Ebmaj9-Dm7) and threw inna extra beat.

There are actually 2 basses, one has a chorus and the other some occasional reverse effect; prob’ly a lot of the mix difficulty is there attributable.

The guitar is in M/S with some auto-pan on sustained notes; of interest may be that I recorded it mono, then used a ribbon to record playback of just the guitar to create the side channels when I decided I wanted ’em.”

Review-age

As postered at TOMB and now compiled here:
The Blue Oyster Cult, Tyranny and Mutation: how they played this stuff so in ’73 is beyond me, as well as why the first two records weren’t huge hits. Buck Dharma rules! I did have to tell a buddy who whined about the relatively quiet bottom end level, turn it UP.

Patterson Hood, Heat Lightening Rumbles in the Distance: this guy is an absolute treasure, this album a complete gem.

The Joy Formidable, Wolf’s Law: I really want to really like it, but it’s just OK, with that fucking basketball drum sound like Bush’s and that whiny Pumpkins-clone band’s latest.

Low, the invisible wrong: gets me high.

Mudhoney, Mudhoney: a work of grunge genius, what is not a oxymoron, dude.

Isidore, Life Somewhere Else: where Kilbey takes us to church, with a different congregation.

MBV, Isn’t Anything: I’m still listening to the original mixes these many years later, still trying to figure out why this stuff works, if what’s-name is a genius, and if I like it. I’ll have to listen again.

Danzig, Danzig II-Lucifuge: R. Rubin, B. O’Brien and J. Scott make this sound great, and the band, like on the first record, has silly songs, silly names and a bad enuff ‘tude to make it rock. Whatever happened to J. Christ?

Lou Reed, Animal Serenade: sheer misanthropic poetry, done with very little percussion, and F. Saunders as MVP.

Johnny Marr, The Messenger: I so want to like this, and don’t – over-produced and generic despite the very occasional flashes of genius.

Latest Bowie and Cave; I prefer the latter, so far.

Bowie’s latest is really growing on me.

Shooter Jennings, Black Ribbons: Wow! I’ve heard it once, I’ve gotta think about it, but it’s interesting as hell, some cool songs, lotsa weirdness with a political message.

Richard Thompson’s latest: Excellent, of course.

Echo & The Bunnymen, The Fountain: their last from a couple years ago, quite good inna mellow kinda way.

The National’s latest: love it.

Luna, lunapark: hadn’t heard this inna cuppla years, it’s aged surprisingly well, and such a cool band – I miss ’em.

The Cult, Choice of Weapon: it’s The Cult, like ’em or not – I do, about the only “current metal” band I listen to.

Miles Davis, Round Midnight: remastered, so tasty.

PJ Harvey, Rid of Me: loud and funny, intense and noisy, also interesting as hell.

 

Lucinda Williams – excellent guitar work and songs;
Thurston Moore – SY all the way-sounding;
Mark Lanegan – loverly dark pop;
Robert Plant – world-musicish, great sounds and performances;
Roco DeLucca – bought it for the Tchad Blake production, what is awesome, don’t care for the songs or singer;
U2 – how can this band be so under-rated? Only by being so omnipresent and annoying – it really is an excellent record.

Buncha live stuff offa NYCTaper, and Steve Wynn’s Northern Aggression, Jason Isbell’s Southeaster, Bob Mould’s eponymous, and latest Bryan Ferry, all of what I like (lotsa Marr on the latter – lotsa guitars).

Been really digging the latest My Bloody Valentine, especially cranked in the monitors – the production arrangements (by what I mean how he uses the delays and compressors and verbs and other FX and mutes and such) are excellent.

And completely different (but mebbe not so much), T-Ride’s eponymous release.

Finally, Mould’s Silver Age – he really is quite the creative writer and arranger with what is essentially a three piece with overdubbed guitar.
_________________
vlayman; THD; blog; TFP

The Hungry Drunx: “A Fact”

A Fact
c. ’15 The Hungry Drunx

Ah-Ah
There ain’t no way
I can tell you
How to leave
With yer pride intact

Ain’t no joke son, It’s a fact

Ah-Ah
There ain’t no chance
Of gettin’ over it
You oughta know
Just what you lack

Ah-Ah
There ain’t no reason
Yer momma left you
Just was her time
To get on back

Ah-Ah
There ain’t no leavin’
The killin’ season
Now that the sun
has turned to black

Drums: Snarl
Bass: HnrJazz-Brick-dbx160XT
Vox: CadM9-Eureka
GtrsG&Lf100(RoctronAgold)-ProJr-E609-UA110(pad)_MXL860(durham)-UA710(pad)_M/S
_________________
vlayman; THD; blog; TFP

The Hungry Drunx: “That Comfort Stuff”

That Comfort Stuff
c. ’15 The Hungry Drunks

Sara Lee-ah she makes a good pound cake
Yeah, Sara Lee-ah, she sure knows how to bake
And if I don’t get to eat me some o’ that soo-oo-oon
I think my heart just might break
Betty Crockpot ain’t got no competition
When it comes to that double fudge brownie tradition
And if I don’t get to eat me some o’ that soo-oo-oon
I think my heart just might break

It ain’t to easy keep this boyish figure
It ain’t that easy without alla that comfort stuff
No, it ain’t easy to keep this boyish figure
Ya gotta get enuff

Johhny Fastwalker sure makes me into quite the talker
Yeah he sure knows the medicine I like take
And if I don’t get to drink me some o’ that soo-oo-oon
I think my heart just might break
Joseph Seasickgram keeps me buyin’ olives
I need the bottled brine to help me stay awake
And if I don’t get to mix me some o’ that soo-oo-oon
I think my heart just might break

Drums: Snarl
Bass: Alvarez-Brick-dbx160XT
Vox: ADKa6-PM1000-RNLA
Gtrs: G&Lf100(MXR+-HolyG)-ProJr-SennE609-UA110(pad)_ProJr-MXL860-UA710(pad)MS
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vlayman; THD; blog; TFP

The SM57

Some thoughts I postered at TOMB:

For me, a Picasso drawing in pencil can be as interesting as a Picasso painting in oil – somethings he did, pencil was perfect.

A ’57 is not like a cheap guitar with bad action and intonation and scratchy pots and intermittent connections – it’s like a Melody Maker, simple, limited and functional.

A ’57 is not like a clock radio speaker what is barely suited for hearing the weather – it’s like a Auratone.

A ’57 is not even like a hotdog for dinner – it’s like a decent Italian sausage.

OK, I’m done. Twisted Evil

More mic babble

Asked re a new mic either as a 1st vocal condensor or as similar to a SM57, I posted at TOMB:

The AKG C414 UL B is said to be a good mic, but at $700 it may be more than you need to spend – BTW, ” To be 300 under a quoted price, after being discontinued seems rare” – hmm, not so much, mebbe.

If you really want a decent condensor for vocals, there are tons available at US$300 and even well under that price; I usually reco the AT4040 or the KSM27 for nuetralish, or even a CAD GLX3000. For an “older” type sound, I think something like an M-Audio Luna or Solaris, or the tube Sputnik. There are many tube mic’s, of course, but I’ve been very happy with the MXL M69ME that you can find used; I usually reco that as the easiest to find, most flexible inexpensive tube mic that “sounds tube-ish”, and I reco that means it could fit yer requirement for “old tone”.

Dynamics – again, there are many. Usual reco’s include the Sennheiser MD 421 (orig. or II) or really, just about any Senn MD mic; the 500 series handhelds I’ve used are all cool. The EV RE20 (I like the transformerless 320) or somewhat similar to what you already have but generally considered superior, the Shure SM7b.

I have never met an EV mic, other than broken ones, that I don’t like, and some of the handheld N/D’s sound great on vocals, even the 267, and all of the RE’s I have used have been very cool and kinda “old tone”.

I have only really used the Audix OM2, but like that, as well as the AKG D5. Those and the above EV’s are not totally dis-similar to the 57.

Also, XXX mentions the CAD M179 condensor and it is very nice and very flexible, and I have even seen it compared to the 414; it’s a great mic not even considering it’s awesome price. There is a cardoid-only version called the 177 that might be cheaper, yet. Altho’ I would mebbe feel weird calling any mic, “cute”… Twisted Evil

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