I’ve updated the site and I’ve decided to start a new Blog page. Exciting times.
Now I’ve got your attention, listen to this –
This is a long but thorough update, so you’ve been warned. It’s been a long time since my last update, but don’t take my tardiness for laziness. I’ve been the busiest I’ve been in quite some time.
Since Applewood closed its doors in September 2014, I settled into Yanto’s mixing room; the Valley Underground (unless we change the name). There I mixed a Gin Club album and tracks for Babaganouj and The Stress of Leisure, among others. The family settled into a new house (the 4th in 3 years) and I went off to Rathdowney to track the new Jungle Giants record in a farmhouse on a cattle property. I won’t be doing the mobile studio thing like that in a hurry, but I must say the results are fantastic. The band loved it there and it reinforced my belief the ownership of the space is one of the most important concepts in the recording studio.
That took us to the Christmas break.
I hurriedly tracked an EP for Tjupurru and the Bulldawadda at the Shed to kick the year off. From there I set up a new mixing room named Joe’s Garage. It was the old control room that was previously Wavelength recording studios. It was good to be back with my gear and settled into my own space. Tjupurru was mixed first and then onto mixing the Jungle Giants record, which as last time was an epic journey.
I also managed to squeeze in a session for Kjartan of Sigur Ros fame. He was doing a soundtrack for an Icelandic film about Castrati. He needed an extra vocal take from the singer who was singing the parts for the lead character. Of course it was Harpa, one of the singers in Bjork’s choir. Yes, Bjork has her own choir and Harpa is a woman who was here on holidays. It was a short two hour session reduced to my laptop and an Mbox, as my Neanderthal like protools system couldn’t handle video and recording at the same time (it’s not something I do often). Never the less, it was not your average day.
I also did a week at Airlock getting all arty with Silver Sircus, for album number two. Again we mixed at Joe’s garage. I’m getting used to travelling again, but I miss Applewood very much. Having all the stuff I like lying around can make things easier, but it’s also good to be out of my comfort zone. Really, I think I just like a good whinge.
I also did a session at 301 Byron with Tasmanian band Chase City. Great to have a go on the old Neve again, and it’s great to have an assistant. Even working in a great studio doesn’t mean I don’t need a car full of stuff. There I go whining again.
Apart from all this, I mixed an EP for Morning Harvey, an album for Moski Jo, Moses Gunn Collective and finished off an album with The Stress of Leisure, before I working a six month stint at Joe’s Garage. I sold my Protools system and my beloved console to Empire studios in Moorooka and I moved my favourite bits of outboard gear into Yanto’s Valley Underground Studio, where it all began at the beginning of this post. I’ll be able to spend more time on my PhD and less time worrying about how I’m going to pay the studio rent.
So in short, I’m reducing my production work considerably, unless it’s part of my research. I will be mixing one week out of every month. You can still try to contact me, maybe you’d like to be part of my research, or maybe you’ll find that right moment, where I can make time to work on your project. If you’ve read this far, thank you and hopefully we can still work together some day.
As we hand over the keys to Applewood’s new owners, we are closing the door on what has been one of the most wonderful experiences of my life. Not too many music Producers would knock back the chance to record a band in a church. I was lucky enough to do this for eight years AND have my family along for the ride. For better or for worse, is how it goes, right?
Thank you to all the bands that trusted me with the great honour of capturing their recordings at Applewood. I hope we made the experience a memorable one, as it was a truly special space.
Thank you to Applewood for being such a great sounding room. You will be missed. There is no plugin like you. I will also miss you too, Drumbrella. Look after it Darek, it’s a wonderful toy.
Thank you to my children for being resilient enough to let strangers into their home and make lots of noise in their living room. To let them bounce on your trampoline, swim in your pool and play in your sand pit, when the mood arose.
And most of all thank you to my wife for supporting me, encouraging me, and running the studio side of things for the last 18 months. Thank you for your passion for song writing and creating the ‘Songs of Applewood’ retreats. You too let strangers…, and friends, into your home, to play your piano, instruments and use your dishwasher. I only wish we got to spend more time recording together.
In the last few weeks, we have been busy packing up the studio preparing for the next stage of music making. I will soon be bunkered down in Yanto’s mixing room catching up on some work.
My next plan is to set up a new mixing room, concentrating my time on mixing and my Phd, researching the recording studio in the modern era.
I will also still be making records. It’s what I do!