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Author Topic: Steve's Lecture at MTSU.  (Read 19483 times)

mr. moon

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Re: Steve's Lecture at MTSU.
« Reply #105 on: January 20, 2006, 09:27:32 am »

electrical wrote on Tue, 20 December 2005 07:02


An engineer's job is to manage the technical side of the recording, with as little interference as possible. Anyone who thinks this is trivial (or easy, for that matter), has not been trying very hard, or has not been paying attention. In a professional environment, the acoustics and recording can be managed so as to be flattering to the band and free from the compromises inherent in semi-professional environments. That's why professional studios are needed.



AMEN!!

Speaking as a member of a "band" and a home recordist, I wish more of the folk "in the biz" would have this attitude. I got out of the professional music biz years ago because of the attitudes and business practices I had to deal with which kept pushing "commercial success" rather than artistic expression of the artist. Having a "producer" say, "well gee guys, we don't feel like this tune has commercial potential the way it's currently arranged, let's try adding/subtracting this <enter whatever song component here> and see how it works or we won't waste our time with it" or something along those lines, really sucks. Especially when the band is footing the bill! (It's been my personal experience that most "serious" bands are made up of broke musicians who aren't responsible enough, or old enough, to hold down good-paying jobs ...at least all the bands I had been a part of years ago before I went back to school and got a "real" job to support my music habit).

You may say, "Well, that kind of thing doesn't happen at my studio", and while that may be true, it has been my experience at *every* studio that we (the bands I was in) had booked into here in the Twin Cities. Ironically, most of these studios are now out of business. Again, this was quite a few years ago, so maybe attitudes have changed a bit since then, but my guts tells me probably not.

Anywho, I just wanted to add my personal experience and opinion to this very interesting and insightful thread to help offer the perspective from a band member's point of view.

-mr moon
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suitandtieguy

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Re: Steve's Lecture at MTSU.
« Reply #106 on: February 04, 2006, 12:49:09 am »

pardon me for jumping in late. gotta represent for my fellow electro blues artists. it's been awhile since i saw this movie so i'm going to skip addressing the Linn and DX7 comments, and i really don't like those pieces of gear anyway so why should i leap to their defence. the DX7 ruined keyboard interfaces for a full decade after its introduction. (the DX5 on the other hand was a fantastic improvisational EM synth. i have proof.)

electrical wrote on Mon, 19 December 2005 12:28

... It isn't hard to find examples ot terriffic (or at least competent) bands who made horrible records in the 1980s, scarred by the production-of-the-day brought to bear on them: ZZ Top ...


the difference between ZZ Top and the other bands you name is that for the others bad 80s elements were grafted onto the band's sound in a Frankenstein fashion, whereas Eliminator was quite a tasteful fusion of european electro elements with the ZZ's texas blues. the electronic elements of that record are significantly more timeless than other market-driven 80s rock production boogaloos of the period.

dude, there's a damn _hoover_ in "Sharp Dressed Man". a fucking HOOVER! that means that ZZ Top (or their producer, who ever you wish to blame) prefaced the use of the 8-voice unison mono open-filter bass in dance music by 8 solid years. that track in particular is important to hip dance music types in a similar fashion to "I Feel Love."

but i will say that "Viva Las Vegas" cover was a mere parody of the electro-blues-rock of Eliminator.

yeah ... that Aerosmith track with DX7 bass for no good reason whatsoever hurts my ears every time i hear it.
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Nama

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Re: Steve's Lecture at MTSU.
« Reply #107 on: February 06, 2006, 01:56:58 am »

well Steve Albini is an engineer not a producer. What he's saying makes a lot of sense to me.

The perfect engineer would be close to a robot who could hear the vision of the artist and make it ready to happen. Very boring and there is nothing to talk about it, that's why it's perfect.

just a thought
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PoorGlory

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Re: Steve's Lecture at MTSU.
« Reply #108 on: March 10, 2006, 12:58:14 am »

As a rookie recordist (I don't think I deserve the 'engineer' title for a few years), this lecture blew me away. While I respectfully disagree with Mr. Albini regarding analog vs. digital, everthing else he discussed was gold. Especially the part about how it doesn't matter how each individual thing sounds, its about how it all comes together and how the band's vibe makes the record brilliant. I can tell that is going to be one of those things that I'll always remember.

Dan O'Hare
Mark-it-Zero
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maccool

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Re: Steve's Lecture at MTSU.
« Reply #109 on: March 13, 2006, 11:28:22 am »

Dear Steve,

I watched the MTSU video.  Much good info therein.  My most abiding impression? .... ...there is no magic bullet.  Seems to me that it's down to essential knowledge, essential execution, and essential sympathy. None of those constitute rocket-science; like it or not, all are art.  And I have much work to do.

Salut!

maccool.
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"Live sound will always be different."  Paul Frindle
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