Freitag, 26. November 2010

A Requiem For Gregory John McCormick

A Requiem For Gregory John McCormic (demo) by monkfish

I recorded this about two weeks ago when playing around with my new Waldorf Microwave II. It's not quite finished yet, the mix needs some tweaking, especially the beats, but the arrangement is pretty much in place.

The Waldorf Microwave II is a very beautiful synthesizer indeed, I had owned a Microwave XT for several years (you can hear it all over the electronic stuff I did until 2005), I  have no idea why I sold it. For this piece I just recorded the unprocessed Waldorf sound, no internal or external effects or eq.

The bass (Epiphone EB-0) was tracked through a Summit Audio TD-100 Tube DI.

For the guitars I recorded two tracks per take, one clean through the TD-100, and another one through a Boss CE-1 (chorus), followed by a SansAmp GT2 and then a Boss RE-20 (space echo emulation). That way I can change the guitar sound later when I find it does not fit in the mix. For the moment, the mix is using the original sounds, though.

The Boss RE-20 does a decent job emulating the old Space Echo without all the hassle that comes with owning a machine that uses tape and has lots of moving parts. And it's way cheaper, but the unit is only borrowed anyway.

I'm currently researching other options for the tape delay effect, since I don't really like recording delays on guitars. My guitar playing sucks, and sometimes I have to quantize a few notes. And that does weird and unpleasant things to delays. I will write separate post on recording and processing guitars later...

The beats consist of two Impulse kits and a sampled shaker loop, with a bit of grain delay, compression and reverb on top. This will definitely require some more work.

Montag, 15. November 2010

The Purpose Of This Blog

Earlier this year I stumbled across a few boxes of old demo tapes and DATs I had recorded in the late 80ies and throughout the nineties. I borrowed myself a DAT player, dug out my old tape deck and transferred all that stuff to my computer.

Among these old recordings were a few songs that I always found had never been developed to their full potential, so I decided to give it try and turn these songs into a decent album.

Most of the stuff I recorded in the past decade was electronic music, so I guessed that I had to learn quite a few things about arranging, performing and recording songs, things I might have forgotten and other things I had never known.

I also found that my studio lacked a few essentials devices for this endeavor, so I also had discover and get the proper equipment.

This blog will become a (more or less complete) description of my journey, and hopefully provide valuable information to some people out there as well as give me some feedback about the music.
Some posts will be about the re-recorded songs, as soon as they are developed to a state that is presentable, with short descriptions about how I recorded them and what equipment I used.
Other posts will be about more general topics, some things that come to my mind are:
  • my choice of DAW
  • recording guitars and bass without using amps
  • recording vocals
  • cheap acoustic treatment 
  • monitoring
  • selecting a microphone (and a preamp) for recording vocals
  • plugins or the real thing?
  • programmed drums or a real drummer?
  • how to develop an arrangement
All the songs and sound examples will be available either on SoundCloud or through my website as downloads.

Your comments are welcome.