Before you record
Get some practice! You need to know the songs you’re recording inside out. Think about which instrument leads the song, as that will probably need to be recorded first – at least as a guide.
Do you want to record to a click (metronome)? This makes it easier to edit and rearrange songs, but isn’t practical with free-time playing. If you do want to use a click then you’ll need to work out the tempo of your song, and any tempo changes.
How to Build a Song
For soloists or smaller bands it’s often possible to record everything in a single take. Artists using electronic backing may want to build a song up layer by layer.
Usually we use both – drums, bass and rhythm guitar might be recorded independently in a single live take, then lead guitar, vocals and any other instruments can be recorded as overdubs.
How Long Does it Take?
That all depends on what you want to do.
Vocal recordings over pre-recorded backing tracks are very quick to record – it’s not unusual to get three or four tracks finished in an hour.
A purely live recording takes the length of your set plus half an hour setup time and as long again to render and burn the CD.
A full band recording takes longer, and of course depends on the complixity of your music. A typical live session of drums, bass and guitar takes around two hours to set up. After that it’s just a matter of giving your best performance.
We usually record several takes of each song, then either choose the best take or edit several together to make the perfect take. Then overdubs (lead instruments, synths, vocals, strings, etc.) are layered over that take.
Many artists record in their own home studios, and these vary in complexity. You might not have the facilities to record a full drum kit, or you might not have a decent vocal mic.
We can record whatever parts of your music you can’t do at home, and give you the raw audio data on a DVD. This can then be imported into your home studio for you to mix to your heart’s content.
Engineer or Producer?
We call them engineers, but they can be either – depending on the job at hand. If you have little studio experience then our engineers can craft your sound for you, without you having to worry about the technical details. We can help you with arrangements and even add instrumental parts to fill out your sound.
If you’re an experienced band, or are working with a producer, then our engineers are just that – there to interpret your creative vision and make it a reality.