Month: April 2011

Dale Perkins for sale

My mentor from when I studied my Master’s degree in Music Production, Dale Perkins, has made available his award winning electroacoustic compositions (including “Axe” – featuring source performances and recordings by yours truly) via his website www.daleperkins.co.uk in 16 bit 44.1kHz stereo waves – you can also stream mp3 versions of the pieces there.

Dale was a massive influence on the way I approach sound and sound design. I wrote and produced Liars, Charlatans, Jinxmongers (for voice and accompaniment) as the main body of my Master’s work under his supervision, and was constantly challenged to completely rethink the way popular music can be restructured harmonically, texturally, melodically and how so called ‘electroacoustic’ styles were not exclusively reserved for small circles of the high art elite. Suffice to say, I quickly learned how electronic manipulations of acoustic sound sources, when blended with instrumental performances, whilst completely abstracted from their original form, can indeed make much more sense sonically than combining completely electronic instruments with live instrumental performances – a notion I have developed in the two years since graduating, and used in production and composition work both as a solo artist and via commission.

I assure you that Dorothea’s Boat is very much back on track, and I can tell you that the balance of instrumental and electroacoustic is more even than any of my previous works. I can’t wait to finish it and let it set sail.

Anyway – enough time away from Logic and CDP. I’m going to get back to making music – and in the meantime I recommend that you head over to www.daleperkins.co.uk and have a listen!

Until next time…

The Captain is ready to Set Sail

Captain Wilberforce’s new album Ghost Written Confessions is ready to go to press and is available to pre-order HERE.

Unusually, as the producer and sound balance engineer, I actually ended up mastering the album, as well. This brought up the issue of intrinsic loudness in the final product – and it was something I had hands-on control over. From previous bulletins, you will all be aware of my advocacy for increased dynamic range in recorded music (and you’ll even notice that as I’ve become more confident about the content of my ownwork, the intrinsic levels have decreased and the dynamic ranges have increased). I am happy to say that I stuck to my instincts and preserved a healthy rms level of between 10 and 14dB on the tracks on the Captain Wilberforce album. Funnily enough, it doesn’t sound particularly quieter than many of the hypercompressed albums of the last few years, but has an intrinsic level more akin to the great sounding records of the early-mid 90s. In my opinion, that is the period where we had achieved true hi-fidelity sound in recorded music with an intrinsic level that is appropriate for the most situations and applications. To further this notion – do you notice a level increase when a 90s rock piece is followed by a 2010 rock piece on the radio?

I didn’t think so.

I hope you all share my views on this absurd “Loudness War” which really has had no effect on music sales (if anything, it’s had a negative effect) and I’d love it if more people could spread the word about bringing dynamics back to music. Have a look at Turn Me Up and watch the video below…

….and don’t forget to order yourself a copy of the new Captain Wilberforce album!