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Author Topic: Wilco  (Read 4768 times)

Jacob Eli

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Wilco
« on: April 24, 2006, 04:19:16 pm »

I happen to be a huge Wilco fan and I was just curious to see if anyone here knows anything about the production/equipment/techniques that they have used on their last couple of records (Yankee Hotel Foxtrot/A Ghost Is Born), which I enjoy the most.  (Also, perhaps any information on other recordings affiliated with Wilco like Loose Fur, Jim O'Rourke, etc.) I'm just curious to hear about mic placements/pre's used, etc. because I love the sounds of both records.  They feel very natural and real sounding opposed to most of the records coming out today with processed and fake sounds.  Any information would keep me quite interested!

Thank you all!

Jake
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j.hall

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Re: Wilco
« Reply #1 on: April 24, 2006, 04:58:04 pm »

there is a DVD out that documents certain portions of YFH

i'm not a big fan, so some one else will have to point you in the right direction.
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NelsonL

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Re: Wilco
« Reply #2 on: April 24, 2006, 05:50:48 pm »

Jacob Eli wrote on Mon, 24 April 2006 13:19

I happen to be a huge Wilco fan and I was just curious to see if anyone here knows anything about the production/equipment/techniques that they have used on their last couple of records (Yankee Hotel Foxtrot/A Ghost Is Born), which I enjoy the most.  (Also, perhaps any information on other recordings affiliated with Wilco like Loose Fur, Jim O'Rourke, etc.) I'm just curious to hear about mic placements/pre's used, etc. because I love the sounds of both records.  They feel very natural and real sounding opposed to most of the records coming out today with processed and fake sounds.  Any information would keep me quite interested!

Thank you all!

Jake


The Wilco DVD isn't super revealing from a recording standpoint -- if you're a big fan you've probably seen it anyway.

You do get to see them tracking and can make out a few mics etc. Basically it's the band tracking to 2" in their loft. The mix session in the movie is at CRC before they hand the reins over to Jim O'Rourke-- so not what you hear on the album.

On another note-- if you rent the documentary "Grizzly Man" make sure to check out the extras. There's studio footage from the making of the soundtrack with Jim O'Rourke on several tracks.

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Jacob Eli

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Re: Wilco
« Reply #3 on: April 24, 2006, 10:21:13 pm »

Cool, I will most definitely check that out.  I have seen the Wilco documentary and I can make out a few mics here and there, if I recall it looked like they were using either some old ribbons on the toms or an occasional c414 and then c414s and c451s for overheads, sometimes a 451 up top and a 414 behind Kotche's right shoulder.
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scottoliphant

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Re: Wilco
« Reply #4 on: April 25, 2006, 11:45:44 am »

there are several shots in the DVD of tweedy recording live with the band and acoustic guitar. sings into some sort of "blue" mic, looks like the blue bottle.

NelsonL

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Re: Wilco
« Reply #5 on: April 25, 2006, 12:08:03 pm »

Well here's what I recall seeing-- which isn't much considering I just watched it two weeks ago:

Tweedy Vox: Blue Mouse, SM-7
Drums: Sony C37 about 6" over the rack tom.
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Jacob Eli

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Re: Wilco
« Reply #6 on: April 25, 2006, 12:41:32 pm »

Correct, I surely saw those mics being used.  I'm pretty possitive I saw some 421 on organ speakers and the like.  Also, there is a scene with Jay Bennet at the piano and Jeff singing (I believe it was Poor Places) and on top the piano sat a shure KSM 32.  I'm pretty sure about the c451s and c414s on drums though.  I have no idea for bass drum and I think the snare was a 57.  Most the shots go by quickly so you have to pause to look better.
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NelsonL

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Re: Wilco
« Reply #7 on: April 25, 2006, 12:50:57 pm »

Another thing I noticed was Jay Bennet playing a Helpinstill electric piano-- we had one in the kitchen for a while when I was a kid and I've always wondered how they sound (I wasn't paying attention to such things then.)
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Eric H.

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Re: Wilco
« Reply #8 on: January 05, 2011, 06:06:32 pm »

Reviving an old to comunicate my enthusiasm:
Just bought the 'ghost is born' Cd, done at Sear Sounds, and its a amazing sounding record with very good and attractive songwriting.
Beside the great songs, sounds, mixes, I LOVE the fact that the mastering didn't killed all dynamics. It must the best post 2000 pop/rock record I know that have the full range dynamics of the music. I dream of more records like that to finally hear the mixes and not the L2/brickwall.
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eric harizanos

cgc

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Re: Wilco
« Reply #9 on: January 07, 2011, 10:27:47 am »

I remember some of the 'Yankee' sessions at Soma ten years ago.  Casey Rice and I were working on video software for Tortoise at his place across the street.  Mike Jorgensen was doing some engineering and he and Jeff were interested in what we were doing - later we helped with the software Mike used on the subsequent tour and Wilco ended up using the video software later on.  Mike of course became a permanent member of the band by the end of that tour.

Soma at the time had a Neotek Series II with 32 or so channels, MCI tape machine and whatever the latest and greatest ProTools rig was (John McEntire loves the PT).  Sometime around these sessions and the Tortoise 'Standards' tour John bought the A Range which replaced the Neotek after a few years (!) of work by Shea Ako.  Schoeps mics are a favorite at the studio - often into Hardy pres back then or certainly the A Range these days (incredible sound).   I think the QTVR photos on the Soma wbesite date from around this period.

One of the great things about working at Soma is that it houses McEntire's synth collection and he has a seriously untreatable synth habit!  I would imagine some of the wall of modulars was put into use on the Wilco album either as sources or treating other instruments.  The studio also has the nicest sounding EMT 140 I've ever heard.
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meverylame

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Re: Wilco
« Reply #10 on: January 07, 2011, 11:20:07 am »

cgc wrote on Fri, 07 January 2011 10:27

 
Soma at the time had a Neotek Series II with 32 or so channels, MCI tape machine and whatever the latest and greatest ProTools rig was (John McEntire loves the PT).  Sometime around these sessions and the Tortoise 'Standards' tour John bought the A Range which replaced the Neotek after a few years (!) of work by Shea Ako.  Schoeps mics are a favorite at the studio - often into Hardy pres back then or certainly the A Range these days (incredible sound).   I think the QTVR photos on the Soma wbesite date from around this period.


I could be wrong but wasn't the console in studio "a" a trident 80b at this point?
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Cheers!
Jason Kingsland

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cgc

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Re: Wilco
« Reply #11 on: January 08, 2011, 03:19:17 pm »

meverylame wrote on Fri, 07 January 2011 10:20


I could be wrong but wasn't the console in studio "a" a trident 80b at this point?


Soma really only has one studio the other is an edit room, and the two consoles were the Neotek followed by the Trident A Range (quite the upgrade!).  Engine Studios about 6 blocks away has a Trident 80 series.  

Neoteks are pretty prevalent in Chicago - I even had ones in my tiny home studio.
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