So it's done. The big bastard album I had been working on for a few years is done. Uploaded to the great cloud in the sky and pressed into vinyl. The recording plan somewhat spiralled out of control early on. To start with I only intended to record an EP of a handful of songs I had in 'stripped back arrangements'… but the more I worked on them, the more I wanted to give them the full monty treatment and do them justice. This 'justice of sound' I had in my head would require one thing I couldn't do. Drums. Thankfully I knew a bloody excellent drummer by name of James Yates, who I had been in a band with previsouly - that band in question going by the name The Pattern Theory.
With him onboard it was time to get serious. I began sometime in very late December 2012, sending over some basic versions for James to record drums to. This first set of drums were done over the Christmas period of 2012 / 2013, with another drum-a-thon session taking place in May 2013. Then throughout 2013 I worked and worked and worked on the songs and arrangements. Moments of excitement and track breakthroughs swiftly followed by large swathes of mundane tasks and self doubt… all the time asking myself "is it done yet?" Eventually recording blended into mixing and some sort of conclusion was reached by early January 2014. Then came a bout of mastering led by the fantastic Arnold Kasar, and bang!… off it went to the vinyl plant.
Needless to say, the approach I took of recording and mixing mostly everything myself in my 'home studio' was not without its problems. Finding the quiet moments free from neighbourly and street noise, fighting the acoustics of an untreated room with sleeping bags and materials, endless back-and-forthing of mic placements (watch out for that phasing!) and the cabin fever being of cooped up with only yourself and your own company; are all part of the fun of the solo home recordist. All the more satisfaction for nailing the bastard down. I'm happy with it. Time for the next one.
Here's some pics I found of the whole procedure: