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The secret of the universe & Brian Wilson?
Old 12th June 2002
  #1
The secret of the universe & Brian Wilson?

Is it to be found in the reverberant gap between the last aahhhh and the start of the outro chorus of The Beach Boys "good Vibrations"?

In other words is the secret a good plate? Or was that a reverb chamber? Will possession of one give one (!) power?

Either way, I think of all pop musical passages that one section is genuinely heavenly or closer to god or something, than most everything... Sure Hendrix can take you for an introspective trip round the cosmos of your brain and the Stones can whisper in your ear what they heard while eavesdropping at the door to hell but on Good Vibrations, for that one divine second, a switch is turned on, power is plugged in, stars burst.. I believe he has achieved an almost wizard like status throughout western world for creating that moment.

The poor fellow looks like a zombie now, but it was very nice of him to put on a suit & come all that way to play for England's Queen at her 50th anniversary party and for England's stars to get the chance to meet, a real one.

Old 12th June 2002
  #2
Lives for gear
 
Mike Tholen's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
that reverb is from the chamber/rooms at the old Western Recorders which is now Oceanway Hollywood.
the chambers/rooms are exactly as they were back then.
you can still get that sound, as they did while remixing Pet Sounds for stereo.
a friend of mine plays in his band, he says it's truely amazing being taught "God Only Knows", "Sloop John B.", "Oh Caroline No",,, ect. by none other than Brian himself!
although he also says Brian isn't always "with it" and has a hard time.
sad but true.
but man, those records that he produced were nothing short of stunning.heh
Old 13th June 2002
  #3
One with big hooves
 
Jay Kahrs's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
And all those edits! I remember the first time I listened to Good Vibrations in the studio and I heard all of them going from one section to another. I'd never let stuff like that out. Nah, can't do it, the noise floor doesn't match and we're shopping the tail of the 'verb! tut tut

Made me a little more tolerant of what I do and some of the things I've let go. Still, amazing sounds. Has anyone been in those chambers? How big are they and what are the materials?
Old 13th June 2002
  #4
Lives for gear
 
e-cue's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
What an incredible record, not only for engineering, but for the world... Young engineers, buy "Pet Sounds" and study the hell out of it no matter how sick of the songs you are. (note: if you hear something you don't like, make sure to identify it so you don't fall into the same mistake)
Old 15th June 2002
  #5
Jr. Gear Slut 2nd class
 
chessparov's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Actually other than "Good Vibrations", "Caroline No", and "God Only Knows"-a top ten fave love song
of mine, very little airplay has gone on in my
neck of the woods for the other songs.
Picked up "Pet Sounds" on the new CD about three
months ago, and have been enjoying it since.
Certainly one of my top 20 albums of all time now.


It was surprising for me to actually prefer the
STEREO versions of the tracks over the mono.
Many Phil Spector hits sound better to me that
way, so it was interesting to compare.

Chris

P.S. Also think that "Holland" is vastly
underated BTW.
Old 16th June 2002
  #6
Lives for gear
 
Tim L's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by e-cue
... buy "Pet Sounds" and study the hell out of it no matter how sick of the songs you are.
I've got an older brother out in "Cali" who simply can't believe I don't have a copy of Pet Sounds. He's been a Beach Boy's freak since the late 60's and has been telling me for years to get the damn record... though from a purely musical aspect not a technical one. I guess I really should break down and get the thing.

... Scotty?...... Hello?.......
Old 16th June 2002
  #7
There is only one
 
alphajerk's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
i too prefer the stereo version, i know... but its what i prefer.
Old 17th June 2002
  #8
One with big hooves
 
Jay Kahrs's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Don't feel too bad. I don't own Pet Sounds either. But, I've never been a big Beach Boys fan.
Old 17th June 2002
  #9
Lives for gear
 
Mike Tholen's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
do yourselves a favor and go get it!
If you get the box set you'll get, the original mono mioxes, new stereo mixes (wonderful remixes!), and a disc full off acapella versions of all the songs and ofcourse the obligatory out-takes and unused tracks for your listening education.
the box set is truely a 'schooling' of sorts for anyone involved in music production.
Old 17th June 2002
  #10
Gear Nut
 
jflush's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Before you get all crazy and run out and score a copy of Pet Sounds...Track down a copy of Brian's book Wouldn't It Be Nice! Yes, the full of **** Eugene Landy/ Brian Wilson thing...Read that, then watch the Beach Boys video An American Band...This combo /introduction got me totally ****ed up into The Beach Boys!!! I've converted several other Beach Boy haters as well...Wanna trip out on 409, Little Duece Coupe...follow this path...it will be worth it! I can't believe I loaned my copy of Wouldn't It Be Nice to a jerk...:eek: Does anybody own this book? What exactly was it that Brian said near the end of it about digital recording...something like..."this is what we were trying to do back in 63" regarding the noise issues...
Old 18th June 2002
  #11
One with big hooves
 
Jay Kahrs's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
No, I don't hate the Beach Boys. I just never really got into them the same way I did with the Beatles. I also don't really like the Stones that much.
Old 18th June 2002
  #12
Lives for gear
 
Tim L's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
I never hated the BB's either, just wasn't my thing. Still isn't really... I'm more interested from a technical standpoint on this one. I usualy don't buy records for the engineering and production value... but sometimes I do.

Jay wrote:
Quote:
I also don't really like the Stones that much.
....Blaspheme!!!...

... Just kiddin'... Keith does some of the most incredible Rock rythm gtr playing on the planet.
Old 21st June 2002
  #13
ilan
Guest
It's a soulful album

I was never into the BB until I saw that documentary Jflush recommended. I then went out and got Pet Sounds. It's a mandatory album. One of the things about it is that Brian was completely green with envy after he heard the Beatles' Rubber Soul album (also mandatory) and Pet Sounds in many ways was a response to that album. This album can make me cry pretty easily and for a rock & roll record that's no small acomplishment. "Caroline no" is currently my favorite track but that song that goes "...you still be-lieve - in -me ------- I----- wanna cry------------" is just heavenly. Any contemporary music maker can take something away from listening to this album.
Old 21st June 2002
  #14
Gear Head
 
🎧 15 years
Brian Wilson...

Just a funny story I read (true)...

Jack Nicholson is at the front of the crowd at a recent Stones (I think it was Stones???) concert singing to the music VERY LOUDLY. He gets a tap on the shoulder. It's Brian Wilson.

"Could you tone it down a little?"
Jack, very apologetic, responds, "Sorry, I didn't know I was being too loud." (Probably blasted out of his gord anyway.)

Brian Wilson: "It's not that you were being too loud... just that you were OFF KEY!!!"

-C
Old 21st June 2002
  #15
Lives for gear
 
loudist's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by Jay Kahrs
No, I don't hate the Beach Boys. I just never really got into them the same way I did with the Beatles. I also don't really like the Stones that much.
Beatle Paul was so blow away with Pet Sounds, that he took out a fulll page ad in NME extoling its virtues. Soon after that the Beatles made Sgt. Peppers, and Paul has said that it was inspired by Pet Sounds.
Old 22nd June 2002
  #16
Gear Nut
 
jflush's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by loudist


Beatle Paul was so blow away with Pet Sounds, that he took out a fulll page ad in NME extoling its virtues. Soon after that the Beatles made Sgt. Peppers, and Paul has said that it was inspired by Pet Sounds.
Loudist is really...MIKE LOVE!!! Kick ASS Mike!
Old 23rd June 2002
  #17
Lives for gear
 
loudist's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by jflush


Loudist is really...MIKE LOVE!!! Kick ASS Mike!
Ouch!! he was the jerk, wasn't he?
Old 23rd June 2002
  #18
Lives for gear
 
Mike Tholen's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Old 13th July 2002
  #19
Lives for gear
 
loudist's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Jules, if you listen closely to the reverb tail on good vibrations, it is not the same vocal chord that preceded it, the top note is not in the reverb, the reverb resolves musically. This could have something to do with the effect. There were liberal amounts of compression used even on the reverb, most likely a plate that is not being 'hit' hard with the send. If you have an EMT plate, one of the tricks using it is to adjust the plates decay for the harmonics it accentuates and 'sings' and not the length of the decay. This is what Brian probably did on that chord.

ADDED EDIT: Another trick used was to mult the reverb returns, tape delay and process the output of the one of the returns (eq and compression) and re-send that into the reverb to create a 'vaulting' style reverb, so one was monitoring the live reverb returns and not the tape delay.
Old 13th July 2002
  #20
Lives for gear
 
e-cue's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
note: Good Vibrations isn't ON pet sounds, but as I understand it, Brian Wilson took it off the songlist to devote more time to it. Some of the harmonies on this record...wow It ain't no "Kokomo". Anytime I hear an artist talking about how they are looking to do something different with their harmonies, I play them "God Only Knows" (a BB fav of mine) and watch their eyes light up with 'new' ideas.
Old 13th July 2002
  #21
Moderator emeritus
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by e-cue
Anytime I hear an artist talking about how they are looking to do something different with their harmonies, I play them "God Only Knows" (a BB fav of mine) and watch their eyes light up with 'new' ideas.
I used to do something like that that with singers who came out of the CSN&Y era and talked about 'great harmonies'. I'd play them the Singers Unlimited Christmas album.
Old 13th July 2002
  #22
Motown legend
 
Bob Olhsson's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
It was pretty common at the time to print the reverb (it was generally called "echo" before Lexicon days) on your tracks as you recorded. Cutting dry pretty much began with eight-track. The dry high note could simply have been an extra overdub added long after the fact because the record needed "something" to lift it there. Remotes on EMTs were pretty unusual until Gotham brought out a cheap one in the early '70s.
Old 14th July 2002
  #23
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 15 years
i finally bit the bullet and borrowed the box set from my brother

i think, the stereo mix is better, and the other stuff (the accapella, the rhythm tracks) is hugely educational

i skip over the first song (wouldn't it be nice), though, 'coz that's the beach boys i don't really like, i wish 'good vibes' was the opener (same tempo, class above song)

i am now a brian wilson fan
Old 14th July 2002
  #24
There is only one
 
alphajerk's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
wouldnt it be nice is a killer song.
Old 14th July 2002
  #25
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 15 years
i don't know, it seems so out of whack with the rest of the album, it gives me the ****s
Old 14th July 2002
  #26
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 15 years
i do like the bridge, though
Old 14th July 2002
  #27
Lives for gear
 
e-cue's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
"Wouldn't it Be Nice" lead vocals always sounded Lo Fi in a non-good way to me. The theremin parts on this record will earn Brian Wilson a high place in heaven. I always thought the leads on "I'm Waiting For The Day" needed some vocal rides. The "Clip Clop Percussion" throughout the record always reminded me of the Budwieser clidesdales. Backgrounds on "Sloop John B" are heavenly...
Old 14th July 2002
  #28
Lives for gear
 
e-cue's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Also, can anyone here tell me what is whispered at 1 minute 15 seconds into "Here Today". There's some background yells or something around 1:45, 1:52, 2:03, too.
Old 15th July 2002
  #29
He sure uses some strange 'words' for backing vocals

"Ee-lobie", "Hee-obie"

Things like that...

I like it!

rollz
Old 20th July 2002
  #30
Lives for gear
 
Mad John's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Pet Sounds was droped in my lap when I was 18 years old and I was l istening at the time to King Crimson, Janis Joplin and so forth. I absolutly hated it as an album, thought it was lite weight, when it had been compared to SGT. Pepper.

I loved a few of the songs, but did not get what the big deal was surrounding "Pet Sounds!"

Well now 17 years later, Pet Sounds is one of my all time favorite records. You could put it on anytime and it would be alright.

Other favorite all timers:

1. Soundtrack to "Man w/the Golden Arm" (1955)
2. Psycedelic Sounds of The Thirteen Floor Elevators (1966)
3. The Pipers at the Gates of dawn (1967)
4. Bitches Brew (1969)
5. In the Court of the Crimson King (1969)


Cheers,
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