Recording and Critical Listening in a Live Venue
This week was not as packed as the last one, but I still managed to fit in audio work here and there. Early in the week Kyle and I returned to the studio to record some vocals for the Jump Doubles, I went to a free gig that my brother was playing at, and soon we’ll be booking a cheap rehearsal space to start a band!
On the 15th Kyle and I agreed to record Tanner (vocalist of the Jump Doubles) because he was not happy with some of the live vocal takes he had done and wanted to go over them. We were happy to take the opportunity to get back into the studio with him, because he’s great to work with. We set up two vocal mics next to each other, a Rode NT2-a and an Electro Voice Re20. We thought, if we’re only going to be recording vocals we might as well do something interesting in the studio so we have more options in mixing because we had more than enough time to get the takes he was after. when we started there were issues with the headphone sends (again!) which eventually got sorted out but they would soon return, with a vengeance…
We managed to get the perfect take within the first or second go for the song Highschool Friends which was featured on my blog last week. We brought Tanner into the control room to listen to his take and he asked us to show him what the chorus sounded like with both the live take and the new take he had done. He liked the sound of the double tracking on some parts of the chorus so we decided to record some separate tracks of him singing over portions of the chorus, which worked very well! After listening through the other takes we decided what songs we wanted to re-record vocals for and what ones we wanted to keep the live takes for and then we went to go get lunch.
Everything was going great, we were keen to get back in and smash out some vocal takes, but then it happened. The desk betrayed us. No one had touched anything on the desk but when we returned the headphone sends were all out of whack. We manged to rectify the issue, but not before we almost deafened Tanner in the studio accidentally by monitoring what was coming through the talk back. We manged to get everything going again and we were back on track recording until the session ended, both parties were happy with the results and we all went home feeling great about the day.
That very night I went to a free gig at the Carine that my brothers band Psychedelic Porn Crumpets headlined and the Drools supported. Both sets were damn good and The Drools covered Jimi Hendrix’s ‘Foxy Lady’ which was a daunting task I imagine, but they did a good job. I had been getting into it all night and headbanging for a good amount of time and eventually my body said no more! So I was left standing at the very front unable to move, but only watch. In my state of temporary paralysis I started to critically listen to the band and apply some of my audio engineering chops to discover what parts of the band lied in what area of the frequency spectrum. I’m not at the level where I can hear a bass tone and automatically say what frequency that very note is at, but I can understand that they fill out the low frequencies. It was interesting to think that way about a live band. And I was able to focus more on the band and I realized my brother has actually got a mad bass tone (He uses the Way Huge Swollen Pickle pedal I showed in Blog 2) Overall that day was very good.
In other news I will also be booking out a rehearsal studio with some pals and starting a band around the music I have already written. Which means sooner or later I will be able to get into the studio and start working on some crazy stuff, and of course I will post about it here.
No plans have been made for this week yet in terms of recording, hopefully get some more Spring Vibes work done. Also I am still working on getting a snippet of Tanners vocals for this weeks blog which I will post when I have them.