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Conchairto project update

July 25, 2015

I suppose I should write a post about what’s going on with my project band, Conchairto, as I’ve not written anything about it since the drum session I did way back in April. Things are coming along really well for the 3-track EP. We recorded guitar DI tracks round mine through my Audient ASP008 via ADAT into my Apollo. I decided to go the ADAT route, as I thought it might provide a cleaner signal, as it’s purely digital (besides the guitar and instrument cable), rather than using cables that I soldered which fluctuate in continuity when you measure them with a multimeter… perhaps it’s all just voodoo and me being too pedantic, but I thought I’d give it a whirl.

We also did bass round mine as well. As my brother was too worried about lending me his highway one P-bass despite living in the same house, Billy managed to blag one from his friend, Danny, who helped us out (cheers, Danny)! Bass went into a Sansamp bass driver DI into my Hairball Audio Bronze pre… the results were truly ridiculous; incredibly deep tone that just filled out the bottom end like someone who’d just eaten an all-you-can-eat buffet… the Sansamp was definitely a great purchase!

Once we’d tracked all guitar parts, we booked studio time at our local studio, HIBIKI, which used to be Fuzzy Music Studios, a studio I interned at way back in 2009 (ah the good old days). I took down all my own gear and just used their rooms so I could record insanely loud guitars without upsetting the neighbours. Despite having all the guitar tracks recorded and comped, we were still rushed for time, as it took me an age to figure out the UA Apollo’s PT mode (I’m now using Studio One 3.1 as a result). We must’ve spent about six hours in the studio re-amping guitars, and in the end, I ended up scrapping the recordings we did for two out of the three songs and just recorded them at home… not to mention having a band rehearse in the room next to us later on in the session and the sound just bleeding through the walls. The recordings that have made it onto the final EP are all the guitar tones for “Vultures” and Billy’s clean parts for “Weathered Skin”, the rest of it was done at my house over a couple of Saturdays when my brother worked his weekend shift so I could use his room to put my guitar cab in… he was none the wiser.

So all that’s left to do is vocals. I’ve had this past week off work, but I’ve been sorting out more guitar parts and bouncing down files from Pro Tools so that I can import them and mix completely in Studio One. I have next week off, so I’m going to get two songs done then whilst Billy finishes writing lyrics for his song “Dark Cloud”. The EP is very near completion, and I’m extremely proud of it considering it’s just a side project.

Side note; I’ve been mixing in Studio One for about a week now, and the good things I mentioned in my initial review have just been bolstered by having more experience working with it. I’ve got a full session’s worth of plugins running at 128 samples, and Studio One hasn’t even given me an error message, let alone crash considering I’m running an insane amount of plugins. Using outboard gear with Studio One is an absolute breeze as well, and the fact you can adjust the phase of the effected signal with a plugin which displays the waveform is incredible. Major props to the developers at PreSonus for making such a stable piece of software.

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