Category: Studio

On the 13th March, I was involved in a Toshiba Encore PR event as the “Audio Specialist.”

Prior to the event my task was to look at how the tablet could be used as a pro-sumer audio device, with the intention that on the day, the press would be able to interact with them in a professional environment; ideally, someway tying the activity in with Dan Croll‘s track “From Nowhere, the sync track to the current Encore marketing campaign.

After a lengthy investigation, it was eventually agreed that we would make use of the Cakewalk application, “Music Creator 6 Touch,” as it is the only ‘pro-audio’ app on the market at the moment that utilises touch capabilities. Each of the tablets was loaded with the app, aswell as the stems from “From Nowehere,” and so after explaining the features and capabilities to the press, they were asked to create their own ‘mix’ of the track.

After a very successful day, and some surprisingly good results from the activity, I stayed behind to speak more with Paul, the Abbey Road Engineer, who was kind enough to take me around the other studios.

It was great to visit such a historic studio, and I hope to return soon with a full recording project.

After working with the Hudson Taylor boys on all of their professional recordings up to this point, I was invited to engineer their highly anticipated “Battles” EP, produced by the legendary Danton Supple. The first part of the recording was done at Dean St. and then the project was taken to State Of The Ark studios for completion, before being mixed by Danton in his own studio.

This is still one of the most hectic but fun sessions I’ve done at Dean St. 

With a full band recording live, plus 3 different guest performers including Huey Morgan and Idris Elba, a film crew, band management, label execs and Ruby the dog, all in the studio, it was a pretty full on day to say the least.
After a few hours of setting up and sound checking, we were all set to record (and film) in one. 

Naturally, the boys absolutely nailed it and Idris added his own undeniable charm to the track, resulting in the video you see here. 

I had worked with producer Stan Kybert quite a few times before; he happens to be close friends with my manager and so has used Dean St. for various projects in the past. As a result we had developed a strong relationship both in and out of the studio over the years and so when he was assigned the task of mixing the 11th solo studio album of his good friend, Paul Weller, he asked if I would assist him.

Stan and I would spend the day getting a track to about 90% completion, before Paul would join us for a civilised pot of tea and a listen through. He would then give critiques on various elements of the mix, which were always well prescribed and showed his keen ear for detail, before we set about adding the final touches. 

After a nights rest and returning with fresh ears, the mix would be finalised before beginning the process again with the next track. 

Paul and Stan have worked together for a number of years so it was fun to be part of this close dynamic, and led to my involvement in further projects. For instance, when Stan produced 2 tracks for Miles Kane’s a ‘First of My Kind’ EP, he invited me to engineer and mix for him at Paul’s Black Barn Studio. 

This image is of Stan’s ’Inside Track’ editorial feature in Sound On Sound, discussing our mix process for Sonik Kicks.

I was lucky enough to work on the debut album “+” from Ed Sheeran, engineering on the single “You Need Me, I Don’t Need You,” produced by Charlie Hugall.

Working with Charlie to track the drums was a great opportunity, having come from an engineering background himself we were able to discuss in depth exactly what sound he was after and how we should achieve it.
Later, while tracking vocals, I was able to see how Charlie interacted with Ed to harness the best elements of his performance.

Charlie’s technical understanding, combined with his easy going nature and natural creativity makes it easy to see why he is one of the UK’s fastest rising producers.
 
Shortly after the album tracking I worked with Ed and Charlie again on the B-Side of the track which featured Wretch 32 and Devlin and was filmed by SBTV. If you look (very) closely I have a brief cameo in the final video 

By the time I had actually secured a credit for my work on Florence’s platinum selling Ceremonials album, I had actually worked with Florence a number of times before.
 
We first met during a few sessions with songwriter-producer Isabella ‘Machine’ Summers, while we demo-ed vocals for potential album tracks.

Then, still during the early stages of Ceremonials, I spent 2 weeks with Florence and legendary producer Paul Epworth during their writing process. Working so closely with Paul was a fantastic experience; not only was it inspiring to see how he worked with Florence to construct songs, but being able to discuss practical elements of career progression was incredibly beneficial.

Once the album was at last in production, I was enlisted to engineer on “Remain Nameless,” working again with Isa. 

To say I was involved in such a hugely successful project and been able to work with some of the industries most influential people has given me yet more of an appetite to build on these experiences.