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Old 20th July 2011
Lives for gear
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Originally Posted by ev33 View Post
I have always had the best luck with organic ambiences (room mics, chambers, plates, spring reverbs). There are a few digital reverbs I use but it is somewhat rare. I find the organic ambiences do a better job of creating a unique environment for a particular part to live in. The ambience and the dry sound become more of a single homogenous sound that owns its spot in the mix. I own a bunch of spring reverbs (BX20, Bi-amp MR/140, Quad Eight RV10, Fairchild 659, Orban 111B, MultiVox analog delay w/verb thing, and about 4 Roland SRE-555 chorus echos in various states of functionality). I also have an EMT plate and a chamber setup at my place. I like to enhance natural ambiences with digital delays. A digital delay that has some modulation on it can be a great way to thicken up a plate or chamber sound. It adds some pitch movement to the decay and keeps it from sounding stale as it trails off. I always reach for those types of things first. For digital stuff i have 2 H3000s, an Ursa Major Space Station and a Lexicon 200. The H3000s get the most use. There is one particular patch I created a long time ago in the H3000 that ended up being called "Bigness" that has been used a lot over the years. It is based on the "Swept Reverb" Algorithm. That algorithm is essentially a 6 tap delay with adjustable feedback and modulation. It is all over the now 20 year old T-Ride record (god damn I'm old) and the first 3EB record. I still use it these days. It is the one patch that I have found that can be put on an existing room sound that makes it sound bigger and deeper without sounding like a digital reverb. It is on the guitar noises that float around in the verses on El Paso (1st song on the TBS record). It is on the opening breath and guitar bend at the beginning of Heroes and Villans (last song on the T-Ride record). It is on the choruses of the song "The Background" on the 3EB record as a part of the swimmey ambience. Actually the swimmey ambience on the chorus of "The Background" is a bit of an H3000 extravaganza. The chorus for that song was just not opening up quite enough. I didn't want to add more parts to the song. It needed a dreamy sort of organ pad to just fill out the chorus a bit. I created the pad by sending kevin's clean guitar to H3000#1 with a patch called "String Modeler". String modeler is kind of incredible. It grabs on to pitches from the incoming signal and sustains them out in a way that sounds like an organ. I took that signal and sent it to a leslie speaker, mic'd it and then sent that signal to the "Bigness" patch on H3000#2 via aux send & return on the console. On the 3rd Smash Mouth record the end of the song "Force Field" submerges completely into the H3000 "Bigness" patch.

Oh my! What great info Eric! Thanks so much for posting, I am so glad that you're here. I was just listening to the Memory Man tracks on iTunes, that album sounds great.

I love this post (above) in particular. I have always wondered how you got that track on 3EB's 1st album to open up so much during the chorus to The Background. I remember I used to point that out to people and they wouldn't notice it until I pointed it out. Good stuff!