This production took on a life of its own, and was crafted in a unique way — at least from the point of view of my experience. The production was built around a drum loop, “hand made” by Pete and myself (one he heard in his head and practiced to prior to recording). As the original song was over ten minutes, we thought a loop might be interesting to try. And, as the song was inspired by Pete’s motorcycle expeditions, we wanted something that drove, in a mechanical, yet, musical way; we thought the loop might contribute to that feel. We used only two mics (stereo pair), which, given the simplicity of the part, was appropriate. It allowed us capture the right floor tom sound, with just enough low-end to mitigate the need for bass; by not directly mic’ing the tom we captured a more open and expansive feel, like that of the open road.
I was, I’ll admit, skeptical that this would yield positive results. But I was wrong! We ended up being very happy with the results and initial feedback has highlighted this rhythmic feature of the song. Of course, no rhythmic element, however strong, can save a weak artist endeavor. So, in the end, the song stands on its own merits, and is an example of what is becoming quintessential “Lund”!
This production was also the first to deploy Wave’s new Non-linear Summer. This plugin is designed to emulate the sound of mixes on large format consoles. While I don’t entertain the digital vs. analogue debate — in part because I think it is a false debate, and in part because I don’t have experience with Neve or SSL large format consoles — I did demo the plugin and found that it offered a means for affecting the sound of my mixes in new ways that were almost always pleasing. The plugin offers one a chance to introduce subtle eq shifts, as well as pleasing distortion. There is also some affect on the stereo image as well, creating a sense of a more expansive sound stage. On a single channel, the “drive” control allows one to push an instrument forward (or tame it) in a subtle but effective way, not equal to moving the fader. And, I did sense some “glue” as a result of the NLS — hence, I forked over the dough and bought it. So, this mix serves as an initial showcase of that plugin.
Another unique feature of the production was the use of the Electro-Harmonix POG2. In lieu of having this (hint), we forced a vocal track through the Pog and then a guitar delay, driven by a Groove Tubes Ditto box in an effort to push the signal. What we came up with is the “mothership” sound you’ll notice during the break; it serves as a great underlay to the guitar riff.
All in all, I believe the song is a great showcase of the “Lund genre” and a great sounding production; there is, of course, more to come!
Oh, BTW: don’t miss the “re-mastered” versions of Pete’s other material (all available here). After mastering a few recent projects, I’ve developed a new appreciation for the work of professional mastering engineers, and continue to learn from them as I study and practice this part of the process.