With analog recording there is a lot more involved then just going to tape. The microphone preamps and the mixing desk play a huge roll in how a recording sounds. When Billy announced that Smashing Pumpkins will release 44 songs under the title Teargarden by Kaleidyscope I'm not sure if he mentioned that the goal is to treat each song sonically different to best present its palette. Here are the steps... Billy writes a song, we record a demo, listen back and find the feeling that the song evokes and then visualize the picture that it paints. To me, when a recording really works I "see it" as much if not more than I "hear it." As we start the journey into the Teargarden I feel very lucky to be working in a studio that has many unique and historical recording consoles.
Pictured above is the API console that we recorded the first song through. Just amazing sounding... Very strong for guitars and I love the low end. Hendrix, Prince and countless othershave recorded on API boards. This particular board was owned by The Doobie Brothers at one time.
WHO'S BETTER: THE BEATLES, PINK FLOYD OR THE ROLLING STONES?
I don't know but they all recorded through an EMI mixing console.
Here is a picture of the EMI TG 12345 that we are recording the second song through. The board came from EMI Sweden and at one time was owned by guitarist Chris Rea. EMI consoles were never manufactured for commercial sale, but were made for use in EMI's network of recording studios. They were produced by EMI Research Laboratories and designed by engineers at Abbey Road Studios. The board was also recently refurbished by famed Abbey road studio technician Brian Gibson. Astonishingly the console also has one "cassette" that was used on The Beatles' Abbey Road. As we start to bring up the drum tones I can hear and see its history. This board is just so musical it's hard to put into words what it sounds like beside AWESOME.... also I must admit it's fucking damn cool to work on a piece of equipment that The Beatles once touched.
We had a very long day today with tape machines blowing up and losing parts and such... but it is coming to a nice close as we dig into this next song.
Here is some video from today's craziness.
Here is a clip of studio tech Ricky Canning showing me how he wired to the console and the routing for the EMI TG12345. We also found out that L.S. stands for Loud Speaker.