Simon Says Pop Up Studio 2016

Annual festival recording made me return to Demontfort Hall for the Simon Says festival last weekend.

The last two years I’ve been in the Garden Suite.. lovely vibe there.. this year, we were stuck upstairs out of the way… less vibes, but some good stuff recorded.

Usual fighting against adjacent sound stages and time, but, again, managed to capture some lovely performances with a couple of students doing lots of the work. Mixed in between sessions then finished mixing off and mastered super quick in my studio here.

I used Logic X again: I set up a template in advance with go-to reverbs and delays to make the mixing as smooth as possible… short plate, hall-verb, amp verb and 2 tape delays: slap-back and mid length delay.. along with compression and EQ that was that.

Recording was taken care of with a pair of Beta 57s: I love these.. directional and warm. There was a couple of 58s and 3 DI’s to cover every eventuality.


All this was plumbed into an Alesis USB Multimix desk : this is the 5th year I’ve used that.. been pretty rock solid bar 1 restart.

I rarely record these days… I do much more mixing out of choice.. I can get super bored in recording sessions waiting for stuff to happen… so it’s great to gorge on loads of artists over a weekend recording some magic super quickly with no hanging around!





I Am In Love press release with Rise and Demise remix

The remix I completed is going out on Robot Needs Home records in April as a B-Side. Here’s the press release:

‘We are delighted to announce that due to unprecedented national press and radio attention (details TBA), I AM IN LOVE, will be releasing, ‘I Want You’, as their debut single slightly earlier than planned, through their good friends Robot Needs Home Records. The track and two B-Sides including the Rise and Demise of John mix (Make Recordings) will be available from itunes and all good online retailers from 25th April 2011′

As someone who’s knocking on a bit (37 don’t you know, sonny) it’s nice to watch a band with momentum. It takes me back to bands I’ve been in moons ago: always planning the next gig, recording or art. These are amazing times to be in a band. Being in an organised band with tunes is the best.

Good luck to em!

I love the Robot Needs Home logo, by the way.

I am In Love remix completed

This morning, fresh ears a-go-go I nailed the I Am In Love remix. There comes a point in a track’s life where you can feel that you start to wonder what happens if you chuck the kitchen sink in. That time was coming, so I knew it was time to stop.

I emailed the master to the band this morning and got a nice email back later. The band are going to pop it on the next single in a few weeks as a B-Side.

Here’s the original…

I may knock a video out for the remix later

I am in love remix progression

… so earlier I blogged the working process of a remix. Got hooked in for an hour.. almost always the most productive time… I have a pad from the ESP and I wonkified it, a collection of old drum machine samples, some through a gated reverb for extra coldness, and crunched them through an old Sony cassette machine with a low input so the internal limiter goes mad.. sidechaine-like sucking ……and I also got a nice tune supporting the verse vocals. I whacked a Remedy arp on, too. Not sure about that, though. Got to the stage where I was tweaking too much so I knew it was time to stop for tonight.

Mental note of next step……. nylon guitar, melodica……the female vocal at the end has a nice sub-hook which I may develop, bass, start knocking out an arrangement.. keep it short (the James Blake  remix went on too long for me so I’m reacting against that)…… and I’m not thinking this mix will be a massive departure in terms of feel from the original…… a parallel mix from later in the night…?

Of course all this might change….

I am in love

A few weeks back I had lunch with Seamus Wong Paul. He played me a rough mix of a track by new band I Am In Love (ex Autohype ) called ‘I Want You’. Sounded lovely even pre mix: reminded me on 1979 cold electronica mixed with a bit of the XX. Funny, but I didn’t remember the chorus, just this lovely arpeggio and tender vocal. Anyway, the band sent me the stems now it’s fully mixed (the production’s ace by the way), and I just prepped a Logic project for a remix.

I don’t usually think about the remix process but thought I might blog it for this one… so.. after prepping the tracks and making sure all is there, I spend a minuscule amount of time listening to each track.. I don’t want to get attached to anything other than the vocal. I’ve muted all the stuff apart from 2 vocals and some chord clues.. and they’ll go once my own stuff’s down.

What I’m looking for is the heart of the vocal.. it could be the whole thing, or just a few lines. Already thinking that the chorus may go, and I’ll pull out other words for the hook. Whilst I decide, I’ll start with a beat, and as I’m hardly Mr Big Beat, it’ll be lovely old drum machines or synth drums made from the ESP in Logic.. or a bit of each.

… if you fancy ago at remixing the track, mail the band via their Twitter feed @iaminlovemusic