Friday, 26 July 2013
My Attorney rhythm session, with expensive equipment
Stuart brought his Machinedrum device with him to recording last night. It didn't fail to impress: the controls are intuitive, and the sounds it generates very much to my taste of Holden-esque blips and crunches.
It's being trialled on two My Attorney songs recorded during the session: In A Breathed Moment and Your Affected Accent.
I'd forgotten how demanding it is recording My Attorney. It's much more complicated than anything else I tend to work on: there are lots of fiddly details to attend to, such as multi-tracking, syncing beats, click tracks, overdubs and comping of various drum takes.
Ideally I need an engineer to manage the technical demands of the session while I concentrate on my guide vocals, and responding to the lightning quick suggestions of Stuart and Ian. Often I can't participate in a musical discussion because I've got my head under a table trying re-route a mic cable, or swearing at Logic because it won't do what I've told it to.
Despite these challenges, the session was a success. As well as the aforementioned 'proper songs', we tracked two 'groove-based' sketches that have recently emerged from rehearsal. I'm arguably more excited about these pieces than anything: they comprise of hypnotic, cycling bass and drum lines that loop forever, and definitely reflect the most recent turn in style by the group.
It also helps recording the band in sections: the rhythm section tracked together to establish the groove and structure, with the lead guitars being workshopped at a later date. Finally, the vocals and my own production twists can pull all the threads together at some late and lonely hour of a night far into the future.