Over the last couple of months I have noticed a curious trend with inquiries about the studio. More and more bands and solo artists in the Dallas-Fort Worth area are contacting me about drums. Specifically, recording drums at the studio for a project they are otherwise doing themselves.
Part of this is no doubt due to the recent notoriety we have enjoyed by winning Best of Denton County (thank you again!).
But I also think it’s due to the fact that more and more musicians are getting into recording and just incorporating it into what it means to be in a band these days. Usually in each band there’s at least one person who is more inclined than the rest to explore the world of recording. And as I have commented elsewhere, while I am certainly an advocate of going to a studio, I think in general this is a fantastic development and I highly encourage all musicians to learn as much as they possibly can about recording.
But what often happens when bands are trying to do an album all by themselves is that they usually run into a roadblock when it comes to certain vital aspects of their sound: recording vocals, recording drums and mixing. Vocals are a challenge because most often this requires an isolated/soundproof/acoustically treated recording space and sometimes a high-end microphone, depending on the band’s vibe, genre and goals. Mixing is a daunting task because it really takes a lot of experience (i.e. bad mixes) before one becomes competent at this crucial phase of music production.
Regardless of genre, recording drums is almost always the most difficult challenge for bands. For one it’s probably the most complicated instrument to record in a typical ensemble setting because there are so many microphones capturing so much sonic information. There are also a lot of different approaches to recording drums that yield dramatically different drum tones, and knowing which one to implement for your music is sometimes not clear.
All of these variables, plus the difficulty of the technique necessary to properly position the microphones creates the potential for things to go south quickly: mic bleed, phase issues, comb filtering with room mics, getting the hi hat out of the snare, simply not having enough gear to capture all of the drums, fighting a poor or 'weird' sounding room (reflections), using a mic technique that doesn’t work for your music, just to name a few issues.
The result: weak, thin, or otherwise lifeless sounding drums.
If you find yourself in this situation, you might consider coming to the studio and recording all of your drum parts here like a lot of bands have been doing recently. We have an excellent sounding room, a slew of microphones and preamps specifically tailored to capture fantastic drum sounds, great sounding drum kits and cymbals, and a lot of experience to help you decide which is the best approach for your music.
We can try all sorts of different mic positions and configurations according to what sound you’re going for, record several takes, and export all of the performances for incorporation into the rest of your recordings. Our hourly rates are very affordable and will probably wind up saving you money (as well as grief) in the long run. Best of all, you will have amazing drum tracks to build the rest of your music on. If you are interested drop us a line through the contact page.