Professional Sound - April 2018 - Page 40

character of the verses afterwards. So, you know, the girls had to sing in between these parts and we had to sort of set up a character for them to go off of in the verses. So we paid a little bit of attention to that thing, getting the character right, but the vocal chain was a [Neumann] U67 into a 1073 Neve [preamp] then into a Retro 176 [limiting amplifier] and then to, I think, an Ante- lope Audio Orion converter. PS: What was the vocal chain and effects on Max? It sounds like there was a lot going on with his voice at different points in the song. PS: For Danko Jones’ “My Little RnR,” were the parts recorded separately or as a band? ER: Oh yeah! We had him do a guide vocal and I felt he sang that guide vocal amazingly so I end- ed up using a lot of what he did in the guide – especially in the choruses – in the final version of the song. And then it was more us detailing the ER: For the most part it was recorded sepa- rately. They sort of jam together for the bed track stuff but I get gluttonous when I’m doing drums and I like really focusing on all Gus van Go PS: Do you remember Terra bringing you “Paradise” and what the song was like at that point? GvG: Well, I don’t know, if I say, how much she would kill me. At first they brought me “Para- dise” and it was a different song. It was the basic music, chords, and basic sort of arrangement, I guess, but it was a whole other song. We worked on it and we worked it in the pre-pro- duction and then tracked with the full band and she laid down scratch vocals and everything… I felt that the lyrics were cool but they weren’t moving me and I felt that the melody was cool, but it wasn’t moving me or necessarily pushing any envelope. So, to me, yeah the song rocked, like it had a power to it, but it lacked a certain je ne sais quoi to be a real radio hit. We were in the last few days of tracking, I would say we were like 90 per cent of the way done the record, and Terra turned to me one day and was like, “You know, everyone’s thinking that song is going to be a hit, maybe.” I was like, “That song is not going to be a hit until you change the vocals.” She was like, “What?” I said, “I just feel like the lyrics and melodies are not fully there.” I was working on another song at the moment and she was like, “OK, well give me some time” and she left the room, went into our live room, and sat there with a guitar for a couple of hours while I was working on mixing some other stuff. Then suddenly she came back and, with all the same music because we’d already recorded the whole band, she came and sat down and was 40 • PROFESSIONAL SOUND the drum mics and getting all the good stuff going towards the drums and then sort of replacing the bass. Danko, when we do demos and stuff for the album – our basic sketches of what the songs are going to be, like arrange- ment and parts wise – I end up keeping a lot of his demo vocals because sometimes if he’s realizing the song right then and there, there’s a certain edge he brings to it when he’s doing it. Kind of like with Max when we were doing “Knocking at the Door.” Him realizing what he wants to deliver and delivering it at that point, that kind of was the take. With Danko, although he only likes to record in a pair of tube socks, which is a little awkward sometimes in the studio [laughs], a lot of stuff I do keep is just from his demo takes. So I always make sure I have a great vo- cal chain happening with him because some of it is a keeper. Nominated for: “Paradise” by Terra Lightfoot from the album New Mistakes “Boys Like You” by Whitehorse from the album Panther in the Dollhouse like, “I think I wrote an amazing song.” I was like, “OK, play it” and she was like, “But I’m not sure though.” She basically sang the finished version of “Paradise” and I was like, “Oh, that is a hit.” So we immediately re-sang all the vocals and did all the harmonies and we brought in a gospel choir to do all the call-backs and the backup vocals. Then our original guitars were more standard classic rock guitars, and I was feeling that they were cool, they were powerful, but they were just too classic sounding. Like really good Les Pauls through Marshalls and all vintage stuff. We only use vintage ‘60s guitars and stuff but it wasn’t pushing the envelope. So my partner, Werner F, who’s a great guitar player, suggested that we do a more Black Keys-type of approach. So we redid all the rhythm guitars with a Harmony Rocket going into a Sears [Silvertone] amp – the Jack White amp – going through a smaller 2 x 4 amp and just cranked it and put some slapback on it so it’s way cooler sounding and still raunchy, but bluesier and more vintage-y. PS: Though Whitehorse was known as a folk-rock duo, “Boys Like You” was a very different sound for them. As far as outboard gear and effects, what were you using? GvG: We have an EMT140 Plate [reverb] that we used a lot. We love that sort of ‘60s and ‘70s plate reverb sound on vocals and keys and stuff like that; PHOTO: BEN po changes in the song. The last chorus is actually faster than the rest of the tune. That soul section kind of threw a monkey wrench into the whole tempo format. We had him just sort of sing the tune while Tony [Hoffer, the producer,] played the piano and we kind of mapped the tempo out in Pro Tools and then we had everybody play over it. even on drums sometimes. Plus an Echoplex [tape delay effect] that we used all over the place for tons of guitar and vocal stuff, as well as a Roland [RE-201] Space Echo, which we used like crazy on drums. The spring reverb on the Space Echo is a lot of that Por- tishead-type drum reverb sound for that breakbeat kind of stuff. On a lot of that Whitehorse record we had the drums in a tiny 3 x 3-ft. vocal booth. PS: Why? GvG: Just to get that super dry, very-lightly-hit drum sound. We have a regular little vintage kit and [co-producer Jessie Singer] would go in there and try out beats. Obviously there are no room mics; there are just three mics: a mic on the kick drum, a little overhead mic, and close mic on the snare !ݽձ䁉́ѡɔ)ԁݽձЁѡ́ѥ䰁ɽͽչ)ЁѡԁЁѡЁɥɕٕɈɽѡ)MЁЁЁͽչ́مиe)Ёɕ́ѡ͡ЁЁаѽЁа)ԁЁѡЁͽЁɕɐٕAѥ̴)ѡMݔѡЁи