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Credible sources for recent tech and FX use on songs or albums?


Mind Riot
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Good evening, gentlemen and any ladies who may be present. I'm in the middle of a writing project explaining some recent music technology in lay terms, and I need to find some examples of the usage of such technology on specific songs or albums from reliable journalistic type sources to cite for reference.

 

Things like impulse responses as opposed to either mechanical or digital reverb, as well as their use for guitar cabinets or other things, amp modeling, polyphonic editing such as is employed in Melodyne Editor, audio quantization and time stretching as opposed to MIDI, and film soundtracks done with sample libraries instead of live orchestras.

 

I know the use of some of these things is near ubiquitous and some may be more targeted toward the consumer/prosumer market, but I'm having a heck of a time finding any examples to point to for the reader.

 

I don't really have any subscriptions to music mags, or perhaps this would all be jarringly obvious to me, but if any of you have any links you could share where a producer, artist, engineer or even a product website states that a particular one of these technologies was used on a specific release, and that sources is NOT a blog, forum, or wiki, I'd greatly appreciate it. Thank you all kindly in advance for any help you may be able to give. :)

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Mix Magazine, Sound On Sound and Electronic Musician all have articles discussing your interests. Go to each website and research what is required of you to search their article database.

 

I remember back in the good old day, libraries and their awesome research librarians would do this for you and print out the article. I used the library in Chicago's loop as well as the Kenosha ,WI system for acoustic research and they were like angles, those awesome little old library ladies.

 

But now with the innerwebz I suspect that research is on you. If you have to pay for a subscription to search the articles I'd say that is well worth it and only fair.

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A lot of the information for these magazines are also online, as you can find articles, so it's just a matter of doing searches. I've found techniques on how The Doors were recorded at Sunset Sound, for instance, including what microphones were used for the drum set, vocals, etc. and where they were placed, and that's rather specific. And failing that, simply purchasing back issues of the aforementioned magazines or Tape Op (or a few books, which are also fantastic sources of information...there are many many many of these available) would be great.

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I've run across Sound On Sound, but Mix and Electronic Musician hadn't struck me. It's been a while since I've had any real world magazine subscriptions. Any other online counterparts of periodicals I should look at?

 

Thank you gentlemen for the recommendations, unless UstadKhanAli is a lady, in which case please forgive me madam. :)

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No, Ken's a guy. :)

 

As far as sources, a lot of the times we engineers are a bit hesitant to mention the more corrective methods we use in the course of album production. It tends to make the talent a bit nervous when their flaws are revealed and the slight of hand that was used to obfuscate the flaw and enhance the illusion of their greatness is discussed in too much depth, so you may have a hard time finding a lot of that mentioned by the producers and engineers involved. Sound on Sound, Mix and Electronic Musician are good places to look - specifically interviews with engineers and producers. You can also check online for interviews with engineers. You might want to also check the manufacturer's websites for tidbits of information to get you started - "so and so used our new XYZ123 plug-in on the latest Artist's Name Here hit song!" Then take than info and use it for your next search - see if they mention it in greater depth elsewhere.

 

Honestly your task is a somewhat difficult one. Unless you were there on a session it's often difficult to know how things were done or what was used - especially with some of these techniques where the goal is to NOT have anyone be aware that the engineer had to "do" anything such as pitch correct or time stretch / correct.

Edited by Phil O'Keefe
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I am a guy, yes, it's true.

 

I still have real world magazines. I like the whole experience of reading a magazine. I do have a Kindle for reading books. While I like reading a real physical book more, I also like the Kindle, and as a bonus, it will eventually keep down the clutter of more, more, more books....

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Honestly your task is a somewhat difficult one. Unless you were there on a session it's often difficult to know how things were done or what was used - especially with some of these techniques where the goal is to NOT have anyone be aware that the engineer had to "do" anything such as pitch correct or time stretch / correct.

 

Indeed, it's only after some time casting about and coming up empty that I thought to ask here. I'm fairly confident I can find examples for impulse responses, amp modeling, and orchestral samples, but I think most people would sooner die than admit needing audio quantization.

 

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A lot of the information for these magazines are also online, as you can find articles, so it's just a matter of doing searches. I've found techniques on how The Doors were recorded at Sunset Sound, for instance, including what microphones were used for the drum set, vocals, etc. and where they were placed, and that's rather specific. And failing that, simply purchasing back issues of the aforementioned magazines or Tape Op (or a few books, which are also fantastic sources of information...there are many many many of these available) would be great.

 

Tape Op is a great source.

 

Also Sound on Sound has a lot of interviews with current producers and musicians and they talk a lot about software and modern techniques. They also have a "classic tracks" feature in every edition that is fantastic. I used to subscribe just for the "classic tracks" articles and still have stacks of back issues that I go to whenever I hear certain recordings on the radio and wonder how they were made. With a subscription you may be able to search their data base.

 

There have also been several recording engineering books with producer interviews over the years.

 

Wikipedia and music forums also have a lot of info although sometimes it might not be quite accurate.

I'd love to see a website with a big recording info database that was certified and accurate.

 

.

 

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