recording so far

So, the recording process for this album started about a month and a half ago, when I decided I wanted to have the album out by the summer. At that point, I started to demo ideas – just recording them as stereo files into FLStudio, just to get me thinking about the whole album writing/recording process.

I also started to think through how I want to recording process to go, and the kind of equipment I’d need to take it on a step further from the last solo album. I’d decided I want to do another all solo all live recording record, not a step-time layering or sequencing record. I figure I’ve got at least one more all solo album before I need to do something else just to break up the flow… :o)

In order to be able to record the loops and all the processing onto individual tracks, I needed a mixing desk that had ‘insert sends’ on each channel – that way I could have Lexicon MPX-G2 #1 going into the desk, sending a signal straight to the soundcard, but also sending signal via the auxilliary channels to both Echoplexes, and the other MPX-G2, those are also input into individual channels, and each of those channels has an output to the soundcard, giving me a total of 6 outputs. However, my soundcard only has four inputs… time to get a new soundcard as well.

Ebay came up trumps on the search for a mixing desk, and I got a Mackie 1404-VLZ-PRO, which is fantastic. It was slightly less forthcoming on the soundcard front, and after two weeks spent being certain I was going to get a MOTU 828 Mk II, I decided to just get another Delta 44 and run the two alongside eachother.

So now I’ve got my set up with 6 channels going to the computer via my sparkly new desk. Time to decide on recording software…

Having used Cool Edit Pro in Italy at Luca‘s studio, I knew I liked the interface and editing facility. Cool Edit was recently bought by Adobe, and is now called Audition. So I downloaded the 30 day trial version, and waited for the immanent release of version 1.5 – not wanting to pay over £200 for a bit of software only to have to pay £50 a week later for the upgrade…

So, equipment and software in place, I started recording in earnest. The process changes slightly from track to track – sometimes I’ll work on one of the ideas I came up with before, other times I’ll put on a CD and then record whatever it inspires, or I just noodle around with the computer in record and see what comes out.

Then I’ll do a quick mix to see if it’s going to work at all, sometimes do another take or two to see if there’s a better one there, and then fire of an MP3 to Evil Harv to see what he thinks, knowing that he’s insult it.

So far I’ve got a few more funky tracks, some jazzy chordal stuff on the new 6 string, a couple of big sprawling ambient pieces and a tune with a reggae feel. This weekend I’ll probably put together a CD of what I’ve got so far, so I can have a listen through away from the computer and see if there’s any continuity between the stuff, and whether or not it might even end up as a double album…

Hopefully I’ll have an MP3 or two ready to go soon.

Inbetween takes, I’m also trying to sort out some more gigs for August (I’m planning on having the CD available from the beginning of August), and starting to get magazines etc. interested…

Soundtrack – nothing except me :o)

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