Not much of significance to report today. We started the day around 11, everyone arrived promptly and after half an hour of making coffee, getting comfy and firing up amps etc, we gotÂ cracking with the third song. It took a few run-throughs to get warmed up but we quickly got a few good takes.
Moving on the the fourth song, a slightly alarming attitude developed (from my point of view).Â On one of the earlier songs we’d recorded several takes of the full song, but in a couple of places things were proving a little tricky, so we’d decided to record a few sections individually with the view of editing them together later. Whilst this is fine, and I have no problem with it, the guitarist immediately came out with the suggestion of recording the fourth song in sections right from the start. From a production point of view, I prefer to get a good, solid take of the whole song if possible, with as little editing required as possible. I’m already piecing together one song from a large number of disparate takes, and a second song from a couple of different takes, so given the time-frame we’re working in I’m not keen to be contructing the whole EP from dozens of different takes every time! Far too much time will be spent on editing.
I convinced them to at least try and play the song as one take, and after finding the click tempo they rattled it off decently first time. We got a couple more full takes which just got better and better, so I felt vindicated and the band felt better for gettingÂ a complete take. I may comp something together between a couple of takes but there will be no major surgery needed.
Moving on we tackled the last song in much the same way and this one came together even more easily. Again, three “keeper” takes and we were done. From the 11am start it was now 5pmÂ and we had recorded all the major songs they wanted, soÂ we decided to throw in the towel for the day. It was the bassist’s birthday today as well, so after a cake with candles and round of “Happy Birthday” it was a good time to close the day and let him enjoy his celebrations!
After the band had cleared out,Â I sat for half an hour or so doing some rudimentary mixing. I haven’t done the editing yet, so I was just playing around with the sounds and seeing what’s hot and what’s not. The “Worlds Most Resonant Floor Tom” may have to be re-titled as “The Floor Tom From Hell”, as it’s sounding more like a bongo in places than a tom. I may have to invest in Drumagog and do a sound replacement on it, as it’s almost unworkable. I’m a little saddened by that as it took such a long time to get it sounding good, but I think we have to face the fact that we’re using a 14″ jazz tom as a rock floor tom and it simply won’t tune low enough to get the sound we’re after. The amount of dampening it required to tame it has just taken the life out of it, thoughÂ it would be fine as a middle tom-tom. Curse you DW and your immensely resonant kits! Fortunately, the drummer isn’t precious about these things, and I’m sure he’d prefer it to sound as good as possible than settle for something under par.
Tomorrow is now basically “luxury” day – we’ve got the room set up and everything miked up, but we’ve already finished the songs we aimed to record. On the computer I’ve got the original multi-tracks of the previous EP we recorded some 15 months ago, so the plan is to try and overdub “new” drums onto the old songs. I’m happy to give it a try, but from my own experiences (I’ve overdubbed myself playing drums to one of these songs already) I’m concerned that theÂ drummerÂ (good though he is) will struggle with the groove the bassist and original drummer had. We’ll try it out, but I think we’ll get more mileage by either overdubbing drums and re-doing bass at the same time, or totally re-recording. This will push the track total up to 8 tracks (which will be a lot of mixing) but will leave the ban with an album performed by the current line-up, which would be nice. We’ll see how things work out.