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Verve & Richard Ashcroft vocal tones..
Old 29th July 2004
  #1
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Wiggy Neve Slut's Avatar
 

Verve & Richard Ashcroft vocal tones..

Im very interested in the vocal tones on the Last Verve (Urban Hymns) and solo outing of Richard Ashcroft.

Epecially FX settings and gear. Christopher Potter is responsible for this work and his judicious choice, taste and production aesthetics really appeals to me. He manages to get the vocal up there with lenty of space, detail and emotion. Coming from a bnackground in mainly Rock, FX are not really my forte and im not really expereienced in relation to maximising thier useage...save for my favourite AMS reverb..

Any hints tips?

Wiggy
Old 29th July 2004
  #2
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Just wanted to comment on your great taste in music. I absolutely love the first Richard Ashcroft solo album(Alone with Everyone?). The orchestration and placement of sound on that album is just gorgeous. Especially the strings. I'll give it a listen and see if I detect anything they may have done regarding the vocals and FXs, etc. Urban hymns is also a great sounding album, very moody. It sounds really big and rich. My guess would be it was recorded to a 2" with a Neve desk. At least that's what it sounds like to me. Anyway, great topic.

Sean
Old 30th July 2004
  #3
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Messiah's Avatar
 

I've got 2 mates who play with him (bass and guitar), so I'll do some snooping and report back anything I find out...
The bass player has a keen eye for 'what's going where', etc, so I'm sure he knows something!
Old 31st July 2004
  #4
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Wiggy Neve Slut's Avatar
 

ooooh.. please do!

I still cant get over the FX use in 'Urban hymns' Everything is so affected, like the drums, gtrs and vocals and you know it damn well is!!.. but usually i would shudder..i think it is yet another great case of English production values coming to the fore and the manner in which they are tastefully used.

That album has such a great sense of spatiality with fantastic front to back depth, not to mentios some DOPE songs!

I think he would be someone that i would LOVE to have a chat with..

Thanx
Wiggy
Old 31st July 2004
  #5
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rainsinvelvet's Avatar
YES ! One of my Favorite Records! 'Urban Hymns'

Good taiste indeed.
Thick as can be, but somehow everything is quite audible..

Anyhow, thats all I've got heh

ERic
Old 31st July 2004
  #6
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meteor's Avatar
 

starting to like you guys better every day. Urban hymns being one of my all-time favs. if you do a search, i think you might still find Chris Potter's production notes on-line somewhere. It's been a few, but i remember that being a very interesting look into the making of that record.


cheers.
Old 31st July 2004
  #7
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Wiggy Neve Slut's Avatar
 

Meteor

I looked high and dry on google last nite for info and there isnt much that i could find?

Do you know who his maangement company is , as thats usually a good spot to start in terms of a google search intead of the actual persons name.

Any hints or direction you can point us in?

either way im gona keep searchin'
Wiggy
Old 1st August 2004
  #8
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Messiah's Avatar
 

Just For Wiggy!

Old 1st August 2004
  #9
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meteor's Avatar
 

i found a link to the producer notes on the verve website - which may or may not be around still. sadly, the verve disbanded on my birthday a few years back. talk about a happy f(*&ing birthday. personal issues aside, maybe their website isn't maintained well anymore. i do remember reading that many of the lead vocals were taken live with the rest of the band.

cheers,
Old 1st August 2004
  #10
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Wiggy Neve Slut's Avatar
 

Thanx Messiah..

Its a start... perhaps i wil stalk him when i get to the UK!

Wiggy
Old 1st August 2004
  #11
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philip's Avatar
 

for those who like good orchestration and really good sound quality I must recommend "absent friends" with the Divine comedy
Old 3rd August 2004
  #12
Gear Maniac
 

Spiritualized - Ladies & Gentlemen... (tracked at a local studio)
- Let It Come Down
both great - some big lush orchestration...and generally great albums.
There's a tenuous verve/ashcroft link but not really worth explaining.
Old 3rd August 2004
  #13
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meteor's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally posted by isa215
There's a tenuous verve/ashcroft link but not really worth explaining.
every depressed genius needs a muse. Spiritualized with a full brass section... one of the best shows i ever did see.

cheers,
Old 3rd August 2004
  #14
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Wiggy Neve Slut's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally posted by isa215
There's a tenuous verve/ashcroft link but not really worth explaining.
OK dont get me started with Spiritualized and SPACEMAN 3, sonic boom & EAR.. cos im gona head straight into trainspotting territory but lets just leave that tenous link @ Kate Raddley ok..

RocK woman.organist extradiniarre!
Wiggy
Old 3rd August 2004
  #15
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meteor's Avatar
 

also rather hot - that kate radley. maybe it's just my type.

cheers,
Old 3rd August 2004
  #16
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Wiggy Neve Slut's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally posted by meteor
also rather hot - that kate radley. maybe it's just my type.

ooooh Meteor both u and me share the same sorta tastes... damn i'll fight u for her... ooops its already happened!

Wiggy
Old 5th August 2004
  #17
Gear Maniac
 

lol



to continue the rather tenuous links - i recently got my univox from the drummer on 'ladies and gents' . turns out that the space I was previously renting for studio work etc. (also where the tech who I usually use works out of) was used as storage for spiritualized in that ladies-and-gents era.
blah blah blah
Old 6th August 2004
  #18
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Scriabin's Avatar
 

I normally just lurk these forums daily but I saw this topic and I just had to respond. Urban Hymns is one of the only albums I have to listen to straight through...every song on it is killer. Sonnet being my personal favorite. It's a shame they're only known as a one hit wonder for Bittersweet Symphony...they had so so much more to offer.
Urban Hymns has established itself as a permanent disc in my cd changer for the past couple of years. I'd love to learn more about the making of the album.
Old 6th August 2004
  #19
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Scriabin's Avatar
 

Here's a pretty good article on the production of Urban Hymns...
http://special.the-raft.com/theverve/chrisp.html#q8
Old 6th August 2004
  #20
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rainsinvelvet's Avatar
Holy **** Scriabin!

That link made my week..

My old roomate stole my copy. Now I've got to go buy another one this evening. Something about that record speaks to my heart!


ERic
Old 6th August 2004
  #21
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Scriabin's Avatar
 

Yeah, its a pretty good interview...would have liked to seen more gear talk but hey, that's the gearslut coming out of me.

Glad you enjoyed it

Scriabin
Old 6th August 2004
  #22
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Wiggy Neve Slut's Avatar
 

My faves are also.. sonnet, rolling ppl, come on, lucky man and space and time.... one of my all time fave discs. Even though i prolly listen to 'storm in heaven' more.

I think when that album came out it looked like dance/electronic msuic was going to rule the world ad im glad the verve came back with a smashing album that gave not only myself but others, a degree of faith that there was still a band out there that could serve up a kik ass album with songs to match.

Wiggy
Old 18th May 2009
  #23
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keano's Avatar
good thread but I am still trying to figure out vocal chain and FX. you would think there would be more info like this on the web but I searched nada.
Old 19th May 2009
  #24
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doorknocker's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wiggy Neve Slut View Post
He manages to get the vocal up there with lenty of space, detail and emotion.
I really like the Richard Ashcroft track 'Break the night with colour', sometimes in a long while a track comes along that is first and formemost a fantastic song but also an outstanding production. Top that with a great vocal and it's a HIT. Edwyn Collins' 'A girl like you' is another example for me with a similiarily inspiring production set to a very catchy tune.

IMO, all the effects and treatments are very important.....especially so for the backing tracks. What makes Ashcroft's vocals great in terms of 'space, detail and emotion' is the performance itself, period.

I'd bet that the vocal mic was the 'usual' U47, U67, 251 or maybe a SM7 or something and the pre was almost certainly your typical API, Neve or variation thereof.

Yes, I'm going the ole 'it's the source' route but what I really want to say is that the other elements in the songs besides the vocal are extremely important in defining that special quality that ENHANCES the vocal. For example. I find the use of pedal steel guitar on 'Alone with Everybody' to be very innovative and special.

So my advice would be to concentrate on the instrumental tracks of these tunes and analyze how they relate to the lead vocal. Ashcroft seems to be very inspired by Scott Walker and they both share a tendency for VERY elaborate, symphonic productions. With weaker voices this would certainly end in disaster but with a really great vocalist, especially somebody with a very resonant voice and 'depth' à la Walker, Bowie or Ashcroft, it can work out great.
Old 19th May 2009
  #25
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I have heard Richard Ashcroft say that he nearly always double tracks with an octave lower vocal.
Given the previously mentioned vocal influences and orchestrations, could he be actually "Crooning" in parts ?
Old 19th May 2009
  #26
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aidyhall's Avatar
I used to assist Chris Potter a lot when I worked at Metropolis, so I'll drop him an email, and see if he wants to divulge any information. Alas, "Urban Hymns" was just before my time ...

I certainly know what mic's and pre's Potter favoured when I worked with him, and it may surprise a lot of you ...

He's a great mixer, for sure. I learnt a lot from him ...
Old 20th May 2009
  #27
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Seamus TM's Avatar
 

In the fall of '97, Urban Hymns and Radiohead's OK Computer was pretty much all I listened to.

I, actually, saw The Verve on the second stage of one of those big summer tours sometime around '95.
A Storm in Heaven was very enjoyable to listen to under certain circumstances...
if you know what I mean.
Old 20th May 2009
  #28
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Blast9's Avatar
^ LOL
Old 20th May 2009
  #29
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aidyhall's Avatar
OK, this is probably gonna disappoint the more slutty amongst you ... I spoke to the assistant on the Urban Hymns session, a good friend of mine, and the assistant on the Ashcroft solo records ...

On Urban Hymns, the vocal mic' was mostly a ... Neumann TLM-170. The rest of the chain couldn't be remembered (it was 12 years ago!).

But for the Richard Ashcroft solo albums, the mic' was definitely the TLM-170, through the SSL G-series mic' pre, and a silverface 1176 on the insert ...

Watch the price of 2nd-hand TLM-170's soar ...
Old 20th May 2009
  #30
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David R.'s Avatar
 

I'm sorry, I was never a huge fan of Ashcroft's vocals...

YouTube - Let the Eagle Soar

heh
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