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Willie Oteri: Seek and Ye Shall Find

By Published: December 8, 2004

AAJ: It's cheaper here...

WO: There is a different sound of our CDs and those of bands from Slovakia. I don't know. I think it is because we still use old studios with old amps and vintage gear. But you can get the vintage gear here Ronan Chris Murphy is working on a project now where they bought a bunch of vintage gear on the internet at a good price, getting that big fat vintage American studio sound.

If you have a tape machine, that's a big part of it. And it doesn't have to be a big expense really because it doesn't have to be of great quality to run it from the tape machine into the Pro Tools, and you can get a big, fat sound that way.

AAJ: I think the analogue machines are in fashion now again as well...

WO: Yeah, the hardest thing to get are good mixing consoles, most of the older studios in American have those big, old consoles with the thick sound, and here you probably have to get something like Mackie's and that sounds a bit thinner. But you can make even that fat by using two compressors and two amps for the microphones. So you can take an inexpensive microphone an run it through a tube pre-amp and it will sound really big. With a good producer it doesn't really matter if the gear can do it.

AAJ: The most famous singer from Slovakia recently recorded and album in New York with some great players, and it's a really different sound than what you get from Slovak recording studios, and I can't describe it.

WO: A lot of that might be in the mastering too. In America there are mastering studios in rooms bigger than this, huge speakers that go down all the way to little speakers, and they can keep switching back and forth to get it balanced, and they have tons of vintage gear to warm it up and I think that's what your missing, that bottom, fat, thick, wall sound that a lot of American CDs have. Those places have been established for a long time, so you have to get some more vintage gear(ha ha). Bring on the vintage gear!

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Photo Credit
Sue Short

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