Outstanding Music Studios (Vol. 5)

Outstanding Music Studios (Vol. 5)

Volume 5 of the blog article series “Outstanding Music Studios” highlights another four music studios which are located in the United States, United Kingdom and Norway. If you missed the series’ previous article, you could find it here. Enjoy exploring the following exceptional music studios.

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Stam Audio SA4000 – The SSL-Style Stereo Bus Compressor

Stam Audio SA4000 - SSL-Style Stereo Bus Compressor

While plugins are incredibly useful, there is a reason why top audio engineers still have analogue gear in their racks. In today’s hybrid studios, one of the most significant benefits, while you are mostly mixing “in the box”, is to use quality hardware on your master bus. Hence we have a look at my SA4000, an SSL G-Bus style stereo bus compressor manufactured by Stam Audio in Chile. I received the SA4000 in 2017 when this unit was my very first Stam Audio gear. Since then, some other Stam Audio products like the SA-76ADG became part of my studio gear collection.

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“Unique” Horn Section Recording

Unique Horn Section Recording

After we successfully recorded the electric piano, organ and Moog parts of “Unique” with the German jazz pianist Andreas Theobald, we let rest the production for a few weeks. Playing it back after the break that was used to concentrate on other tasks related to the producer concept EP, we had the feeling that a particular element was missing to complete the song as we envisioned it originally. After a moment’s consideration, we decided that the song needs a real horn section to take the song to the next level and to finalise it. We are more than happy to tell you that we were able to work with a professional horn section called Triple H Horns from the United Kingdom that did a stunning job! In the following, learn more about the guys behind Triple H Horns and how we recorded saxophone, trumpet and trombone for “Unique”.

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“Unique” Keys Recording

Unique Keys Recording

One week ago, we talked about the guitar recording for the “Unique” song that is planned to be the second track of the EP project. The keys have a central role within the song’s arrangement because they are used to broaden the stereo width and to act as a tapestry of sound. By accident, we got German jazz pianist Andreas Theobald (Jugendjazzorchester NRW besides other band projects) involved in the project who then arranged a few layers of different key instruments and sounds to take the project to the next level. Find out how we recorded the different key instruments for “Unique” in the following paragraphs.

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“Unique” Guitar Recording

Unique Guitar Recording

After we already had the drums and bass recorded on tape, we worked on the guitar parts for the new “Unique” song that is produced in the context of our current EP project. We ended up recording single notes for the verses along with rhythm tracks for the rest of the arrangement that give the song a decent funky “flavour”. For some of our followers, the recorded guitar material will be a nostalgic flashback to the late 70s/early 80s. As known for our production documentaries, we will briefly go through the signal flow and used equipment to achieve the sound you will finally hear on the record.

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“Unique” Bass Recording

Unique Bass Recording

When we finished the songwriting for the first song “Come Back” of our EP project, it was time to think about the next track, its genre and all other production- and songwriting-related topics. We decided to work on a soul/R&B song that should be performed with real instruments and stand out because of its “organic”, vibrant arrangement in contrast to the current, contemporary R&B music on the radio that features virtual instruments and is quite Autotune-heavy. We started tracking the drums, as we did for the rock track “Come Back” after I drafted a rhythm concept beforehand out of nowhere. Having a solid drum track as the basis for the songwriting, I was now searching for the best-fitting bass player to write a funky bass line on it collaboratively.

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Mix:analog – Real Analogue Gear From The Cloud

Mix:analog - Real Analogue Gear From The Cloud

Mix:analog is the world-first fully manual, real-time controllable online analog processing service for audio engineers and creatives. It’s a web application with a graphical user interface that allows you to control a broad selection of analogue gear over the internet via your internet browser in real-time. Thanks to the platform, you have access to expensive analogue studio equipment that can add character and the needed saturation in the digital age to your production to take it to the next level. Let us take a closer look at the mix:analog service.

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Stam Audio SA-76ADG – The 3-in-1 1176 Compressor

Stam Audio SA-76ADG - The 3-in-1 1176 Compressor

Bit by bit, I try to collect analogue outboard gear for my project studio that might evolve into a bigger studio over time. I love to work in-the-box with plugins and appreciate the flexibility and comfort that come with it. Nevertheless, I love analogue gear and its unbeatable character and the often slightly different behaviour, especially with extreme settings. I like to combine both worlds, the digital and the analogue one, and set up a hybrid studio environment. This time, we have a look at my brand-new SA-76ADG, an 1176 compressor manufactured by Stam Audio in Chile, that combines the revisions A, D and G in one single unit. A great concept and a real game changer!

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