Is this you? Do you feel like amp sims are great for writing, but you'd always choose a "real" amp for your actual record? If only you had access to a couple of great guitar amps, cabs and mics... If only recording these real amps was as quick and convenient as recording a DI into plugin... If only amp sims would sound as good as the real thing...
Good news: They do! Not the same, but just as good.
As always, it's not about the gear you use, it's about the sound in your head, your vision, your creativity. And there are always multiple different ways and different tools to get there.
When it comes to guitar tone, modern amp sims (virtual guitar amp plugins or Kemper profiles) can definitely get you there. That being said, we can see why you are feeling like they're lacking. There are reasons many people seem to love analog gear (and specifically analog guitar amps) more than their digital counterparts. But luckily, there are ways to make them work just as well as the classic amps we all love.
This one got us thinking, because it's such an important question to ask. Not just "how do you record drums" or "how do you make drums sound good" but "how do make them UNIQUE".
We don't want to sound like everyone else and the records we love most have exactly that: Unique sounds.
So we did our best to answer this question and took a deep dive into what makes a unique drum sound, how to define a vision in your head and finally all the different ways to make that vision a reality.
You need know where you are, what you've already accomplished, what's ahead and what to do next.
Every second spent thinking about those things before you can be creative again and move on with the project is a minute wasted. And, more importantly, mental energy wasted that you could have used to work on your music.
Add to that, that we are incredibly forgetful creatures who get distracted easily and you'll quickly realize that there's no way around tracking your progress properly, if you want a completed project, well thought-out songs, an inspiring, detailed production and happy bandmates.
Join us as we discuss the mindset, strategy, tactics and tools we use to manage our studio projects and let us give you some ideas and practical advice on how to implement a seamless system for your band.
Are you the type of person who loves the technical aspect of recording? Are you fascinated by gear and all the cool things you can do with it? Do you have high standards and a clear vision of what the performances should be like? Are you willing to spend hours to get the perfect take or refine a tone? Are your bandmates joking about how obsessive you are while tracking? Or, even worse, are they annoyed by your approach and your obsessive ways?
"I mean, it's clearly their fault, right? They just don't understand how important this all is."
Recording music and making records should be fun and lead to an exciting result, not a perfect one. You can hear it if it was a pain to create and that is not good. Yes, there are technical details to take care of and non-creative steps in the process. And yes, you need to take it seriously and put in a lot of effort. But while working with countless artists over the years we found ourselves in many situations where we needed to help the band get back on track, prevent damage to the relationships within the band and make sure they still had the goal and big picture in mind.
We've seen relationships being destroyed, bands breaking up and records turning out uninspired or never getting finished at all, because of one or multiple bandmembers being overly obsessive while tracking, being too hard on themselves and their bandmates and, while having great intentions, ultimately putting the whole project at risk.
That's why we felt the need to make this episode to help you finish your projects, get exciting results, strengthen your relationships within the band and, most importantly, have fun while you're doing it.
And this is the master episode. The episode of all episodes, if you will.
Because we're walking you through the entire process of how records are made, explain every step along the way and talk about how to best approach each step, depending on what you're going for and what situation you're in.
There's so much that goes into making a record that the actual process of recording it is just a small piece of the puzzle. Join us as we're breaking it down step by step, so you can create your own master plan for your next release!
It sounds like the exact opposite and we as typically right-brained artists tend to avoid those things like the plague.
But the truth is:
Checklists and Templates enable you to be truly creative, because if you use them to your advantage, your brain doesn't need to waste energy on the non-creative, repetitive tasks anymore and is free to focus on what really matters: The art.
We explain why and how they help you...
Well, here's the cure:
Make your records sound special and exciting by using and creating sounds that are unique to your production and fit your vibe perfectly.
There are things that you can do during the actual recording, of course, but usually you need to focus on the performance, capture great takes and you don't want to paint yourself into a corner too early in the process.
That's where "creative reamping" comes in. It's the process of taking an already recorded signal, running it out of the computer into a pedal, an amp, a PA system, some weird sounding box, etc. and then capturing it again.
This can be done after the recording, without destroying the original file. And experimenting with it is almost a must, when you are self-recording. Because you have all the time to do this without having to pay for an expensive studio, you can go absolutely bananas here, if you want!
Run your vocals through guitar pedals, send your drums through a PA system into some crazy sounding room, use a boombox or kids toy as a guitar amp, use headphones as microphones, there are endless options to try.
In this episode we'll talk about some ideas and about how to actually do this. Stop making boring records and let's get wild!
Probably not organic sounding, "real" rock music, right? The word screams "FAKE!" The truth is, though, that on most modern, professional records, even the very natural sounding ones, you'll hear some sort of pitch correction or tuning that happened in post-production or even in real-time during recording.
It's not at all about creating funny, robotic sounding effects (although you can do that if you want) and it's also not about making bad singers appear as if they could actually sing (although you can definitely do that to an extent).
It's mostly about taking an already great performance, that has the perfect feel and energy and getting the intonation just right, so that the vocal sits beautifully in the mix and connects with the listener.
Sometimes that means it needs to be just a little off, sometimes it means it needs to be 100% accurate. And sometimes nothing at all is needed. It totally depends, but if it could really help the song and make a greater impact on the listener, would you still refuse to do it? Let's discuss!
We think it does matter! Unfortunately, it's not as simple as a list that you could follow every time you record.
Listen to this episode and learn what really matters when it comes to the order of recording things, the philosophy behind it, how to find out your perfect order and how to get the most out of your recording sessions by approaching them the right way.