Recording – Mixing – Mastering >>> In the studio or on location
The music world is changing. Big studios are becoming financially unviable, yet home recording rarely bares the results that software marketers and cheap gear manufacturers promise. This is where small to medium size studios step in. The most important thing is an experienced engineer/producer, then a good room and lastly, the kind of gear no right-thinking person would buy to use privately.
Wishing Well Studio is based around a homely, converted barn. Usually sessions take place with the engineer and musicians all in one spacious room (36 square meters), allowing for a very direct working relationship. This is a modern recording concept, championed by the likes of Peter Gabriel when designing his famous Real World Studios.
The rustic sandstone walls, vaulted brick ceiling and custom room treatment make for a diffused, neutral acoustic.
This studio is tailored primarily towards acoustic music production and is set up with carefully selected, high quality converters, pre-amps and microphones and a controlled and variable acoustic environment, to achieve the best possible warm, natural sounds. With experience in recording everything from solo violin, choral groups, harpsichord, grand piano, folk bands, singer songwriter – to rap vocals and live rock band tracking sessions with drum kit and guitar amps, there isn’t really much that hasn’t been done here.
Monitoring is an important starting point. Neumann KH-120a nearfield monitors are a compact, highly accurate full-range system. Using the KH-120As, decisions on setting up sounds and later while mixing them can be made quickly and in good faith that they will translate well to other systems.
Various dynamic and condenser microphones can be used, including some real classics: Matched pairs of AKG 414 XLS, AKG 451 and the superlative AKG 480b multi-capsule condensers and a trio of “vintage” Sennheisser MD421dynamic mics, which are perfect for percussion, drums, brass and amps. Vocals are usually captured either with a Neumann U87 or a specially modified SEZ5600a valve microphone (similar to U47). Further mics are on offer from Shure, Audio Technica and others.
Next in the chain is a rack of top quality preamps from legendary British manufacturers SSL and Focusrite as well as Swedish newcomers GAP (modified by Salossi with hand-wound transformers) and US legends Universal Audio. These can be selected or set up to go for anything from a clean and accurate reproduction of sounds to something more dark and “vibey” or perhaps brighter and more aggressive. So we can get punchy guitars, smooth fiddles, fat drums, detailed vocals – or whatever suits the context.
Very high quality Universal Audio AD/DA converters are used and a good selection of plug-ins is available for tracking and mixing, including a selection of UAD’s sublime powered plug-ins, Waves Diamond Bundle, Celemony Melodyne and all of the Slate Digital signal processors.
Editing, Mixing and Mastering
Now that a track is recorded, it might need some editing and then it needs to be balanced both tonally and in terms of volume. The latest Melodyne plug-in allows for accurate adjustment of pitch and timing, even within a polyphonic sound source.
Andrew Cadie aims for a transparent, natural sounding mix, where depth and detail is as important as overall volume. This is achieved with top quality plugins and monitoring, in a space that has been acoustically treated to be neutral. Here, a mix and master can be created that sounds good anywhere and on any system.
Get in touch to discuss your needs…
Rates can be charged per 8 hour day or per hour.
Book for an entire CD production (tracking, mixing, mastering)
Or for individual elements:
– Location Recording
– String arrangements
– Brass arrangements
See the Studio Production page for more information about recording with Andrew Cadie.