The choice of venue is important:-
 
If multitrack separation is crucial then generally home recording is a good option, particularly if you own a nice country mansion..? (à la "Led Zep IV" or "Exile on Main Sreet", Rolling Stones) Good headphone monitoring is essential (this will be arranged!). For an acoustic duo or singer/songwriter home location also works great.
 
For rock/indie/metal maybe your neighbours wouldn’t be so pleased with you recording MegaDeath double album... next door!?  No problem. We can hire a hall, or maybe you already use a “large” rehearsal room somewhere? The larger the better, for a number of reasons, not least of which is separation. Although close mic techniques help a lot, if we have space and some control over separation then final mixdown is so much easier. In these type of sessions I do believe in recording the band “playing as a band” with vocals in the cue mix. We may end up redoing the vocals or dropping in for individual mistakes and overdubs but it will sound a lot more together than individuals playing to click tracks and not knowing where they are in the song!
 
Alternatively orchestral or small ensemble performances may benefit from a “good” sounding hall. Techniques for this type of recording are different, probably a matched stereo pair (or Decca tree approach) to capture the soundfield with spot mics for soloists. The acoustics of the hall will play a much greater part in the final sound.
 
There maybe no choice! If you are doing a live gig then the venue is fixed! Here it comes down to “which gig do we record”? If time is not an issue then we try and pick the venue most likely to get the best result. No worries about interfering with PA setup, professional passive mic splitters and DI boxes can be used to take a feed from stage mics/instrument feeds. Additonal microphones can be added to achieve the track count.
  
The style of music, performance conditions (ie live or rehearsal) and acoustic quality of venue all have to be taken into account. This is why it is so important that we talk first to consider options and constraints.
 
I aim to try and keep the recording process as transparent as possible. Minimum technical jargon and maximum performance! (although I am more than happy to talk technical if you wish) All the above issues need to be considered for you, the client, to achieve the best performance with minimum stress.

 

 

 

 
© Icecube Records Ltd, 2010