-   Q+A with producer/musician Gordon Raphael (
-   -   is this it / room on fire drums and vocals (

limbs 18th November 2020 07:10 PM

is this it / room on fire drums and vocals
Hi Gordon, I absolutely love the sounds you got on the first two Strokes records, particularly the drums and vocals. Would you mind speaking about the most important bits of gear to the process of recording them? Things that really made the sound of the record what it was, things you couldn’t have done it without - mics, console, distortion, EQ, etc. Thank you so much!

Gordotronic 22nd November 2020 08:32 PM

Is This It, believe it or not there are 4 drum mics and a room mic, with the whole band playing loud-as-hell in one medium room. Beta 52 on kick drum, Beyer Dynamic M160 on snare, Beyer Dynamic M88 on floor tom. Neve 1073 on all of them, Kick also going thru Tube-Tech Pultec type Eq. Because intentionally I was trying to balance precision and chaos-- everything was bleeding into everything else, guitar and bass included. This is a lot of what made it to the final mix, and created the impact and "wow" factor.
Bass was recorded with a Neumann U87 and an API preamp. Vocals: Audio Technica 4033a condenser mic and Avalon 737 sp (pre/compressor/eq). No reverb, no doubling no other plug-ins on Is This It,,,, but on Room On Fire we did add Bombfactory LA2A plug in.

thats about it as far as equipment of note: Neve, API, Avalon, a few normal mics... that just happened to work well together.

.... on Is This it there were three songs that involved a very different technique on the drums, as the band wanted a "drum machine" sound. I have worked extensively with 808, 909 and DMX drums as well as the Roland CR 78, all my life// growing up... so I had instant ideas how to record and process the live drums to make that kind of sound. We recorded the drums first, with no bleed and no other instruments playing (there's no guitar leak on an old fashioned drum machine!) and then I gated and compressed those sounds and applied "radical eq". :)