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young windows & jesus lizard drum sound... is that a Quantic QRS? Reverb/Delay Processors (HW)
Old 8th December 2009
  #1
Gear Nut
 
rich robinson's Avatar
 

young windows & jesus lizard drum sound... is that a Quantic QRS?

Hi,

I've been listening to The Jesus Lizard for years and always loved the drum sound on the older records (Liar, Heat, Goat etc).

I thought Steve Albini mostly used room mics for ambience but sometimes I do question whether he used something like Quantec Room Simulator as sometimes the ambience sounds simulated to my ears, but in a good way. I've read quotes where he states it's the best unit for creating realisitic room sounds.

I've been listening to Young Widows (Settle Down City) and the drum sound is very similar and could be another simulated room, not mics.

I really like creating a natural ambience in my recordings and I've been looking for a reverb to use on stuff tracked in dead rooms to give it a more "Albini"/indie raw sound. I get asked to mix recordings recorded in lame live rooms far too often!!!

Has anyone heard these recordings and/or can comment on how well the old Quantec may articulate the kinda short room tail heard on a lot of alt/punk recordings?

Cheers,

Rich
Old 8th December 2009
  #2
Gear Maniac
 
msmith's Avatar
 

I personally have no first hand knowledge, as I've never worked with him, but to my ears it sounds like the rooms are digitally delayed. Or rather, the processing you are hearing, is the digital delay used on the rooms to counter the Haas effect. Id imagine its only the wet return, and the conversion lends something to the sound... This is the way I've used this technique, and to my ears, it creates a similar sound...
Old 8th December 2009
  #3
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by msmith View Post
to my ears it sounds like the rooms are digitally delayed.
which is exactly what he did when I assisted him a few times like, a billion years ago - push the room back a little.
Old 8th December 2009
  #4
Gear Addict
 
ThunderShepherd's Avatar
 

i love the Jesus Lizard and Young Widows! Great, open, breathy sound. It just sounds so natural to me.
Old 9th December 2009
  #5
Gear Maniac
 
jonboyrock's Avatar
 

I believe he generally uses an Eventide H3000, about 30ms delay.
Old 9th December 2009
  #6
Gear Nut
 
rich robinson's Avatar
 

Thankss for the replies people!

I thought they may well be rooms but not 100% sure... I add delay to my ambient mics and mess with the phasey sound intil it feels right. It's a far easier process for me as I am working with a DAW and not tape. Usually a M/S pair and/or omnis spaced facing away from the kit.

Can anyone comment on any digital reverb units or plugins that simulate room sounds for THAT kind of sound, that "Albini sound" for want of a better description!

Rich
Old 9th December 2009
  #7
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macc's Avatar
Nothing much to add, but it's soooo nice to see a Jesus Lizard-related post on here! I only have to think about Boilermaker and I get excited

You can really hear that sound on the drum break in Puss, and the overall drum sound in The Art Of Self-Defence (going by memory anyway).
Old 9th December 2009
  #8
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Casey's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by rich robinson View Post
I really like creating a natural ambience in my recordings and I've been looking for a reverb to use on stuff tracked in dead rooms to give it a more "Albini"/indie raw sound.
One day at work I was listening to semi-early DCFC (facts...vote...), the drum sounds pushed me to resign my job that day, and go out and build something that could create those room sounds.



-Casey
Old 9th December 2009
  #9
Gear Addict
 
Jake's Avatar
 

I have nothing to add other than to say that Jesus Lizard rocks!

Now someone please go and start a Duane Denison appreciation thread.
Old 10th December 2009
  #10
ValhallaDSP
 
seancostello's Avatar
 

Here's a channel list for "Goat":

Channel List for “Goat” « Too Big to Fail: a blog for David Wm. Sims

Looks like the sound comes from delayed room mikes. The mikes are near the floor, and are probably pretty far away from the drum kit, so you are going to get a fair amount of room diffusion in the sound.

So, Casey...can you get that sound out of a Bricasti? Listen to "Then Comes Dudley" off of Goat, or the end of "Mouthbreather" for some concentrated drum goodness.

I can give some hints for getting room sounds out of Eos, but I in no way would claim to get the Jesus Lizard drum sound out of there. The plates can get short decays, but the stereo width of the Albini sound would be hard to achieve. I'd try the Stereo Plate, with size set to about 20 meters, a short RT60, High cut around the 5 Khz range, and Attack all the way off.

Albini likes the Quantec QRS, and also speaks highly of the PCM70, but I don't think that his basic room sound comes from a box. Unless that "box" is a very large, nice sounding room. My guess is that the PCM70 was used for reverb special effects, like Kim Deal's vocal on "Where Is My Mind."

Huge huge Jesus Lizard freak here. I didn't see them when they were in town a few months back (had a 103 degree fever that night), but I saw them around 8 times before the reunion. Duane Denison is one of my top guitarists ever. Such a bell like tone out of those Hiwatts. Although I saw him play with a small box Marshall a few times (probably an early 1970's 50 watt head), and he still sounded amazing. I think his tone suffered when he put the Travis Bean aside for the Hamers, but his playing was always amazing.

EDIT: the other element that is important is the sound of the drummer himself. Mac just POUNDED those drums. There are lots of Albini productions (like "Viva Last Blues" by Palace) where the drum sound is far more subdued.

Last edited by seancostello; 10th December 2009 at 03:40 AM.. Reason: forgot the name of the Palace album I meant
Old 10th December 2009
  #11
Lives for gear
 

kind of on the subject...

Steve Albini

Old 5th August 2011
  #12
Gear Maniac
That Young Widows record "Settle Down City" was recorded by Chris Owens in Louisville. My band recorded a record with him about 6 months after that record came out and he doesn't use any sort of room simulator.. it's all real acoustic room sounds. He used the avenson sto series omni mic's taped to the floor, I can't remember the direction in which they were done but it was definitely the room. Dude is a badass.
Old 6th August 2011
  #13
Gear Head
 
cenafria's Avatar
 

For the OP. I occasionally receive dry drum tracks to mix. I use the studio's live room as a reverb chamber (with no predelay) to approximate a realistic drum room sound. If you have an acoustically live space available, try it in your studio. I'm betting you'll prefer it's sound to any digital reverb.

I'm a big fan of delaying room mics a la Albini. It helps you record very realistic, powerful drum sounds with depth and clarity. A very useful technique. In my room, the delays I use (depending on mic placement) range from 9ms to 20 ms.



I have to say I also find it is very refreshing to be talking about Jesus Lizard and Young Widows on this forum. 8)
Old 11th August 2011
  #14
ValhallaDSP
 
seancostello's Avatar
 

I noticed that this thread came back. It is worth noting that I used a few Albini-recorded drum tracks (from Surfer Rosa & Goat) as something to aspire to when I was creating ValhallaRoom.

In particular, I used the Early section in ValhallaRoom to create a bit of a "flat" attack for small drum rooms, as opposed to exponential decay, to simulate tape compression on ambient room mikes. For some of the presets, I would use predelay of 15 or 30 msec. In other cases, I would use the Early Size to push the "room mikes" out a little bit.

Did I succeed? Dunno. If you have a nice room, I would use that first. To my ears, ValhallaRoom can add some roomy ambience, but it is all in the ears of the beholder.

And I still want a Hiwatt.
Old 11th August 2011
  #15
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lobsterinn's Avatar
Liar is one of my favorite records ever. Something amazing clicked on that one with the writing, instrument tones, playing and engineering. The room tones are like another instrument.

For what it is worth, delayed room mics with lots of high end removed and tape compression have gotten me in the ballpark of these drum sounds.

Also, David Sims rules.
Old 11th August 2011
  #16
Gear Maniac
 
thegatsby's Avatar
I really like both bands. The jesus lizard I do not know much about the recording. Listened to that when I was 16 and had no knowledge then.
The Young Widows "Old Wounds" was recorded with an digi 002 I believe. By Kurt Ballou.
It's one of my favorite records he has done.
Old 11th August 2011
  #17
ValhallaDSP
 
seancostello's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by lobsterinn View Post
Liar is one of my favorite records ever. Something amazing clicked on that one with the writing, instrument tones, playing and engineering. The room tones are like another instrument.
I have Liar on picture disk vinyl, which is super cool, but doesn't have the best audio quality. I love the songs on there, but haven't studied the sound as much.

Quote:
Also, David Sims rules.
Yes he does. The Traynor solid state amp he uses for distortion is a beautiful sound as well.
Old 11th August 2011
  #18
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redrue's Avatar
 

According to Wikipedia... Scratch Acid are doing some reunion
dates in the Fall followed by the All Tomorrow's Parties Festival.

I saw their Emo's show in Austin in '06.

I can tell you first-hand... don't miss these shows!

Old 11th August 2011
  #19
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lobsterinn's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by seancostello View Post

Yes he does. The Traynor solid state amp he uses for distortion is a beautiful sound as well.
Yeah, rad tone. I played his part in a JL tribute band for a while and I could never nail that sound. I coudn't quite muster that strangely intimidating stage presence either.
Old 11th August 2011
  #20
Gear Maniac
 

It's also the odd mic choices. He's doing a lot of stuff completely backwards from what's the "norm". Being the talented genius he is, he blends it together like a dream.

What I mean is, if you got a typical drum recording and try to chase his sound it's gonna end up sounding very processed.

I would actually state that the trick is hidden in his close miking. He tend to have a lot of dynamics and very tasteful transients going on. The close mics also leave a great deal of space for the room to fill out. Hell, those sm98 on snare barely make a snap.

I know he used the PCM70 quattro delay preset a lot. It rolls of the highs in a suitable way. Also for guitar.
Old 11th August 2011
  #21
ValhallaDSP
 
seancostello's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by lobsterinn View Post
Yeah, rad tone. I played his part in a JL tribute band for a while and I could never nail that sound. I coudn't quite muster that strangely intimidating stage presence either.
True. Not a tall guy, but he has that hostile thousand-yard stare going on.

And a totally nice guy as well. Saw a JL show in Olympia back in 1993, where there was no stage per se, just a bunch of volunteers holding back the crowd so that the band could play, and Yow could jump over their backs into the crowd. After the show, Sims paid the volunteers out of his own wallet.

OK, I'm feeling old now. Back to compiling my plugins.
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