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If this is true, I should have never gotten "into" recording
Old 5th July 2005
  #1
Lives for gear
 

If this is true, I should have never gotten "into" recording

While listening to my fav Zep tune in the car, Since I've Been Loving You, I heard a squeak. Then I kept hearing it, a damn kick drum pedal - squeaking through the song. While at a red light I listened more carefully, and I still heard it. Am I losing it or is it in there. It drove me nuts.

I never really "critically" listened to music before until I got into recording and now I'm starting to hear things heh

How the hell can you pro's ever listen to music anymore as a fan - I'd go crazy!
Old 5th July 2005
  #2
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Kyle Ashley's Avatar
 

It is indeed the kick pedal squeaking. zep recordings contain several anomalies.
Old 5th July 2005
  #3
Quote:
Originally Posted by kats
While listening to my fav Zep tune in the car, Since I've Been Loving You, I heard a squeak. Then I kept hearing it, a damn kick drum pedal - squeaking through the song. While at a red light I listened more carefully, and I still heard it. Am I losing it or is it in there. It drove me nuts.

I never really "critically" listened to music before until I got into recording and now I'm starting to hear things heh

How the hell can you pro's ever listen to music anymore as a fan - I'd go crazy!
Early in an audio career one often starts obsessing about these little things and you have the potential to lose the forest throught the trees. With experience comes judgement and you learn what's important to obsess about and what is not, and the big picture comes into focus. Squeezing out every little perceived problem often backfires and you're left with something worse than if you just threw up some mics and captured a great band. It's easy for me to separate the music from the technical details, and to overlook, or even sometimes appreciate the little anaomolies that go into a human creative event such as music. Don't worry. It will pass!
Old 5th July 2005
  #4
Lives for gear
Jimmy Page actually talks about his screw up with this bass drum pedal in a recent Guitar World interview:

http://www.iem.ac.ru/zeppelin/docs/i...ews/page_93.gw

He says that they overlooked the issue at the time, but now it really bothers him.
Old 5th July 2005
  #5
Gear Guru
 
lucey's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by kats

How the hell can you pro's ever listen to music anymore as a fan - I'd go crazy!
The fan (or music lover) doesnt hear the pedal ... they hear the music

The trick is to listen like a music lover, and to have the critical listening skills that come from experience

It's an ongoing challenge to balance these opposing views and every project has it's own balance that suits the music. Steely Dan and Led Zeppelin would not sound right recorded in the other's style.
Old 5th July 2005
  #6
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Jose Mrochek's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by jayfrigo
Early in an audio career one often starts obsessing about these little things and you have the potential to lose the forest throught the trees. With experience comes judgement and you learn what's important to obsess about and what is not, and the big picture comes into focus. Squeezing out every little perceived problem often backfires and you're left with something worse than if you just threw up some mics and captured a great band. It's easy for me to separate the music from the technical details, and to overlook, or even sometimes appreciate the little anaomolies that go into a human creative event such as music. Don't worry. It will pass!
Agree 100%

By the way, I love the squeaks on that pedal.
Old 5th July 2005
  #7
Gear Nut
 
SoundChances's Avatar
 

I had never heard the squeaks until I got the remastered box set, and it drives me nuts...
I had only listened to Zepplin on my well-worn vinyl and I just assume that all the pops and click on the vinyl covered them up before...

Now I end up listening to those remastered and try to pick out the squeaks!!
Old 5th July 2005
  #8
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Funny you mention that, I was listening to a remastered version as well.
Old 6th July 2005
  #9
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max cooper's Avatar
 

...I think there's a cymbal stand falling over on '2112', but that's a Rush album.
Old 6th July 2005
  #10
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Messiah's Avatar
 

The really funny thing though is when you try and point it out to someone who can't hear it!
I had a drummer and bass player here a couple of weeks ago and I had Since I've Been Loving You pointing out that very squeak...
Guess which one couldn't hear it?

Funny thing was how hard he was trying to hear once I told him... and the other guy is going 'man, you CAN'T HEAR IT!?', etc...




















Of course, the drummer.
Old 6th July 2005
  #11
Lives for gear
 

.....How the hell can you pro's ever listen to music anymore as a fan ...

My girlfriend is always complaining about me that way. She'll say, "isn't such and such a cool song...". And I always answer, "well no, all the writer did was rip off this song for the verse, and rip off this other song for that part...and rip off the arrangment of this song for the chorus.

For example, she used to really like "Don't Know Why" by Nora Jones. I told her I didn't like it cuz all it was was the sections of five other older hit songs molded together into that new one. She argued about that with me for awhile so at one point, I grabbed the original recordings, spliced two lines of "If You Really Love Me" by Stevie Wonder onto the other sections of the other hit songs, more or less made them all the tempo of "Don't know Why" and then played the "song" for my girlfriend. Took me about twenty minutes. "See" I said. "Same song, different words".

She doesn't ask my opinion of radio songs much any more.

As I remember, the last time I listened to a song without mentally taking it's structure apart was about 1962.
Old 6th July 2005
  #12
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Early in an audio career one often starts obsessing about these little things
Yeah that got me thinking. In my young guitar days I couldn't go to a show without picking the guitar player apart. If I could do what they were doing I would "pfffft" them heh

As I matured I felt the soul in their music and and could care less about the "clams" or technical prowess
Old 6th July 2005
  #13
Quote:
all the writer did was rip off this song for the verse, and rip off this other song for that part...and rip off the arrangment of this song for the chorus.
It's not hard to find these kinds of faults with a majority of popular music (and much unpopular music too). Recognize it though I may, I can still enjoy some of it. From a business standpoint, something new that reminds people of some other things is probably helpful to its success in the marketplace. There is music for art's sake, and music for commerce. I don't mix up the two, but I do take part in both. In addition to music being a creative outlet for me, it also pays the bills!
Old 6th July 2005
  #14
There was this time I was recording this band - Whoa, these guys sucked. Fresh from the depths of the sub-basement of the chemical factory.

Anyway, there were several clicks, pops, and what not. Then, a friggin' miracle occured that made them sound so much less irritating - I will never forget this technique:

Forget to arm the tracks.
Old 6th July 2005
  #15
Gear Maniac
 
Zeppelin4Life's Avatar
 

Yes, its all part of the magic of the zeppelin recordings. I have found tons and tons of zeppelin outtakes over the years. my favorite ones wiere of bonham of course. I found like 20 drum outtakes! go to this post on tapeop (its down now) and follow the links, you'll find them.
http://www.google.com/url?sa=U&start...3D26961&e=9711



yeah, zep albums are weird. You can clearly hear plant laugh in the beginning of 'whole lotta love'. you can hear someone say "stop!" on 'out on the tiles' (supposedly its plant yelling at jimmy to stop making faces at him) theres a phone going off in 'the ocean', at exactly 4:20 in 'the ocean' plant goes "ohhh its sooo good!",



not to mention all the phase issues the albums had. the thing tho is that it sounded good nobody was complaining it was 'Out of phase' or anything. just listen to the drums on 'In my time of dying'. cmon. what a killer sound, but by no means is it 'the right way to record drums'



heres a mosterous list I saved once...sorry, no credits on this..but very cool:

"Good Times Bad Times" - A suggsted explanation for the hollow
sound that Bonzo makes during the opening of the song is that he
might have been hitting a cymbal stand. The sound is a crisp,
metallic type sound, which gives the impression that a hollow
object of this nature is being struck. On the other hand, this
could well be a cymbal.
o "I Can't Quit You Baby" - Referring to the version on the first
album, the odd metallic sound heard on "Good Times Bad Times"
recurs through this song as well, which suggests it is probably
a cymbal. It doesn't sound as hollow on this song.
o "Whole Lotta Love" - Plant can be clearly heard to laugh just
prior to the start of the song. The middle section features a lot
of randon knob twisting in the studio from Page and Eddie Kramer.
o "The Lemon Song" - A gong can be heard right at very beginning
of the song.
o "Moby Dick" - Careful listening to this song reveals a variety of
noises which could range from Bonham moving about on the drum
stool to various sqeaking noises, probably drum pedals. There is
a particularly odd scraping noise at 1:58.
o "Immigrant Song" - The odd buzzing sounds at the beginning of the
song are tape noises coupled with the count in.
o "Friends" - The fret buzz in parts of the song is due to the
guitar being in a different tuning where the sixth string is
quite loose, which combined with poor fingering at that fret
causes the string to buzz on the fret. The tuning Jimmy is
using is a C tuning, C, G, C, G, C, E, where the low E is tuned
down 2 whole steps.
o "Celebration Day" - The drone that carries over from "Friends" is
there to compensate for the rhythm track which was accidentally
erased during recording.
o "Since I've Been Loving You" - the bass drum pedal has a clearly
audible squeak about which Page recently said, 'It sounds louder
every time I hear it!' Also, as Plant is singing the first line
of the song, "Working from seven..." while he sings "from" a
strange wheezing sound can be heard in the left channel.
o "Bron-Y-Aur Stomp" - Some interesting extra instruments in this
song are spoons and castanets, all played by John Bonham.
o "Black Dog" - In the early stages of the song Bonzo can be heard
clicking his drumsticks together, keeping time for the band.
o "Stairway To Heaven" - Not really a weird sound, but the subject
of some occasional discussion in the wind instrument being played
at the start of the song. It is a recorder and it's being played
by John Paul Jones. This instrument was incorrectly claimed to be
a mellotron by _Q_ magazine in 1995.
o "Misty Mountain Hop" - There is a mistake in this song in the line
that begins "There you sit...", but the band apparently felt the
rest of the take was too good to warrant discarding it.
o "Four Sticks" - There is the sound of possibly either a cough or
someone exhaling at the five second mark of the song. Then again
in the left channel at the 41 and 43 second marks, a very similar
sound, that sounds like an exhalation. This occurs again at 1:51.
Someone, possibly Page, may have had a microphone a little too
close to their face. The same sound, although fainter and closer
to the middle in terms of the channels, occurs at the 30 and 37
second mark.
o "When The Levee Breaks" - The titanic drum sound was created
through experimentation by Page and Andy Johns with Page's
penchant for distance miking. In perhaps the ultimate case of
this, they had Bonzo set up his kit, a brand new one, in the
stone stairwell at Headley Grange and experimented with
microphones in various positions before placing one a few flights
of stairs above him. A similar technique was used by producer
Don Was and the Rolling Stones on the song "Moon Is Up", where
drummer Charlie Watts is playing at the bottom of a stairwell.
Right near the end of the song, where the sound is panning all
over the place, the basic riff is also played backwards at one
point. The idea of reversing riffs is not all that uncommon,
Jimi Hendrix did it frequently.
o "The Rain Song" - Bonham's squeaky drum pedal can be heard on this
song. The string on this song are not real and are actually John
Paul Jones on a mellotron, an early synthesizer.
o "Over The Hills And Far Away" - Another track where Bonham's
squeaky pedal can be heard, most clearly from about the three
minute mark onwards.
o "The Crunge" - Again, a sequaky drum pedal can be heard,
especially at the start of the song where just the bass and the
drums are being played. Page can be heard to depress the whammy
bar, he used a Stratocaster on this song, at the end of each
phrase.
o "Dancing Days" - Another track on "Houses Of The Holy" where
Bonham's squeaky drum pedal was somehow overlooked.
o "No Quarter" - In a _Guitar_World_ interview Page revealed he
lowered the track half a tone to make "the track sound so much
thicker and more intense." Plant's voice is also slightly
flanged, while Page uses a theremin to create the moaning of
"the dogs of doom" that Plant sings about.
o "The Ocean" - A phone can clearly be heard ringing at about the
1:38 point in the song. The sheet music that accompanies the box
set has the word `ring' printed twice above the percussion tab
of this song, so the inclusion of the phone sounds like it was
intentional. As well as this, there is also the sound of the
squeaky bass drum pedal that is present on "Since I've Been
Loving" you, which is most apparent in the early parts of the
song. And, yet more odd noises occur at 1:59-2:00 and 2:12-2:13
where it sounds like someone is making the `c' sound, as in the
first letter of the word `cat'. Just as Bonham comes to "Two" in
the introduction you can hear the first five notes far off in the
distance, the result of some sort of production glitch.
o "In My Time Of Dying" - Some members of the list with very keen
hearing have in the past claimed to have heard the sound a
television makes when it's turned on, about half way through this
song. The sound they are hearing is produced by the high voltage
power supply, or more specifically, the flyback transformer,
of the tv which is somewhere around 32,000 volts for color
televisions. Not so much a weird noise, as an anomaly, at the
5:44 mark it sounds like Bonham misses a beat. Them cymbals
continue as they are but at that time it sounds a bit like a
drumbeat is missing.
o "Houses Of The Holy" - Recorded initially for the album of the
same name, the squeaky drum pedal that can be heard on a lot of
the tracks from that album can also be heard on this song. At
the 3:41 mark a strange sound, resembling a bird call, can be
heard clearly.
o "Kashmir" - The orchestra riff that is first heard at the 1:19
point in the song can be heard earlier, in the left channel, very
faintly, after each line of the first verse, such as at 0:25,
0:34 and 0:43. What this is, is the original track using the
orchestra that was wiped off, but a slight "ghost" of that
recording remains and is slightly audible.
o "Night Flight" - A strange hissing sound can be heard for around
half a second in the right channel before the organ starts.
o "Ten Years Gone" - The squeaky bass drum pedal that was noted in
"The Ocean" and "Since I've Been Loving You" occurs here as well,
although slightly quieter than on both previous occasions. Also,
at the 2:59 mark, and faintly in the left channel, a strange sound
can be heard, which has been suggested as the sound of a guitar
being plugged in. Another sound, sounding much more like a guitar
being plugged in occurs between 5:44 and 5:47.
o "Sick Again" - Bonzo can be heard to cough faintly at the end of
the song.
o "Achilles Last Stand" - Despite Page's assertions that there
weren't any keyboards on "Presence" between 6:54 and 7:00, on the
ascending runs with the staccato background guitar, you can hear
what sounds very much like a keyboard. It could also be an
extremely affected guitar sound though. Bonham is said to groan
at one point during the song, but the time for that is unclear.
o "For Your Life" - Plant makes two weird noises after the lines,
'Wanna find myself a crystal, Payin' through the nose.' The two
noises sound very much like a snort, most likely a play on the
line about crystals and paying through the nose, in reference to
cocaine. This starts at around the 5:30 point in the song.
o "In The Evening" - The third Zeppelin song on which Page uses the
violin bow, the others being "How Many More Times" and "Dazed And
Confused", the unusual noises in the guitar solo are caused by the
springs of a fully depressed whammy bar.
o "Fool In The Rain" - An odd noise can clearly be heard at the 1:05
point in the song. The sound occurs just after the line `And you
said that you'd always be true'. The sound is most likely Plant,
and may be some sort of play on that line. The sound itself is
like a sort of `ppttt' noise made with the lips. A suggested
explanation for this involves the meaning of the prior line of the
song. When someone makes a hand shape like a gun with a clenched
fist, extended fore-finger and raised thumb, the sound they most
commonly make when they `fire' the gun is similar to this noise,
a sort of `ppttt' noise made with the lips. Hence, it may be that
Plant was firing off a shot at someone that had not been true to
him. This is a rather tenuous theory however.
o "Carouselambra" - The unusual sounds that have been described as
`percolating' that occur in this song are most likely to be Bonham
hitting some sort of drum as they follow a rhythmic pattern, which
rules out other explanations such as perhaps a bong.
o "Wearing And Tearing" - At the 0:19 mark a sound that is similar
to a phone ringing, one of the newer ones, not the older ones that
actually make a ringing noise, can be heard in the right channel.
----------------------------------------------------------------------


Its impressive to hear this stuff tho. You have great hearing if you can pick any of these out. Audio detectives. I know the NTSB and FBI use them.
Old 6th July 2005
  #16
Gear Maniac
 
Dragonfly's Avatar
 

Getting out of critical listening mode and just listening to music is definitely something that I had to work on when I really began my production career. I definitely don't listen to music the same way, but in my case I think it is for the better.

Dante
Old 6th July 2005
  #17
I love the squeek, and the platey/verb studio chatter before 'Friends', and the airplane before 'Black Country Woman'. I wish more recordings had fly on the wall **** like this (that sounds weird).
Old 6th July 2005
  #18
Gear Maniac
 
Zeppelin4Life's Avatar
 

yeah. I love the rawness. I wish a lot of bands were as laid back as Zep was in the studio.
Old 6th July 2005
  #19
Gear Addict
 
wilcofan's Avatar
 

Quote:
.....How the hell can you pro's ever listen to music anymore as a fan ...
drugs, man, lots of them.

Old 6th July 2005
  #20
Gear Addict
 
JulianBrightnes's Avatar
 

Check out 'Sex Machine' by JB (studio version)...also a Squeek in the kick pedal
Old 6th July 2005
  #21
Lives for gear
 
doorknocker's Avatar
The problem with today's music isn't technology but rather the tendency to 'clean up' everything. It kills the vibe when overdone, you need a bit of sweat to get down.
The big challenge to me, especially when working in a DAW such as PT, is balancing 'perfection' with so called imperfection. Even on a vocal track it sometimes helps NOT to clean the parts where the singer takes a rest. Zeppelin is also a great example how rhythmic tension creates an amazing feel, Page's floating feel against Bonham's 'Hammer of Thor'.


And speaking of imperfections, check this out. I posted it before but this is such a nice and entertaining little site: http://www.pootle.demon.co.uk/wgo.htm


Andi

www.doorknocker.ch
Old 6th July 2005
  #22
Gear Addict
 
JulianBrightnes's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by doorknocker
The problem with today's music isn't technology but rather the tendency to 'clean up' everything. [/url]

excactly!
Old 6th July 2005
  #23
Lives for gear
 

You will have noticed that in the interview posted above, Page describes using 'modern eq' on the remasters to 'make them sparkle'.

Sounds like the drum pedal sparkled plenty too.....;-)

A flat transfer would've been more appropriate. I'd be surprised if the pedal was a problem before it all became sparkly.....just a db or two can **** that balance right up!

Andy
Old 6th July 2005
  #24
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Gerax's Avatar
 

Records, particulary those of the 60s and 70s are full of those things, because either they didn't have the tools to clean up a great sounding take from a minor glitch like that pedal squeak, or because the music was the focus, and not much technical perfection; with the digital tools rolled in things started to change, 'till the degree we are at today: I must admit I sometimes fall prey of this too, like when I absolutely can't stand that tiny little bit of hiss in some tracks I may have recorded in particular circumstances, or the AC that I couldn't turn off last night at a piano concert I was recording (the director won't allow me as there were 200 people in a rather small theater in a quite hot summer night), and now I'm forced to go noise reduction...If you listen carefully there's lots of them (like in Yes' "Owner of a lonely heart" you can hear the hiss of the drums channels unmuted after the guitar's solo break before they start playing again), but I actually love these little things, they add to the fondness I have of some songs, and make them even more timeless for me.

L.G.
Old 6th July 2005
  #25
Lives for gear
 

I agree about certain "clams" left on record are pretty cool actually. I like the airplane and Plant saying "naw leave it in", I like the chatter, the laughing...it's rock & roll afterall. Certain things though can get annoying - like a sqeaky pedal for eg.

The grunting and background noises Bonham make kill me though - I love em :D. He's hilarious - if you listen to the Bonham drum outakes it sounds like he's taking a hard dump when he's playing the drums - I'm surprised they were able to clean it up as much as they did heh But who would have it any other way!
Old 6th July 2005
  #26
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max cooper's Avatar
 

I have a similar problem with movies, since I spent a lot of time working on film sets. I'll be watching a movie and something 'suspenseful' will happen, or maybe during some 'intimate dialog'...

I'll be thinking; Do they know there's a 12K HMI outside their window? Damn! Then I can only think that there's all these people standing around, there's the craft services table with all kinds of really bad food on it, stale Oreos, Red Vines... there's a script sup. with a stopwatch and a clipboard... really kills the mood.
Old 6th July 2005
  #27
I love to hear real acoustic noises on recordings. At least you know it was played by humans and not a drum machine. I usually intentionally leave in a noise or small mistake during tracking.

This way you know it wasn't done on pro tools.

Jim Williams
Audio Upgrades
Old 6th July 2005
  #28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zeppelin4Life
yeah. I love the rawness. I wish a lot of bands were as laid back as Zep was in the studio.
Man, were did you get the cash for all this stuff at 17?

When I was 17, I had a Gibson amp and a '64 strat I pulled weeds to pay for and an Akai 2 track tape recorder with "sound on sound".

Needless to say, my folks didn't help at all. I had to take that toilet cleaning job at the college when I got out of high school.

Now I have a degree in "sanitation engineering".

Jim Williams
Audio Upgrades
Old 6th July 2005
  #29
Gear Maniac
 
Zeppelin4Life's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Williams
Man, were did you get the cash for all this stuff at 17?

When I was 17, I had a Gibson amp and a '64 strat I pulled weeds to pay for and an Akai 2 track tape recorder with "sound on sound".

Needless to say, my folks didn't help at all. I had to take that toilet cleaning job at the college when I got out of high school.

Now I have a degree in "sanitation engineering".

Jim Williams
Audio Upgrades

Its quite simple...borrow $ from parents and friends, work 40 hours a week, record peoples bands at $20 an hour and give some guitar and drum lessons to the little kids...$10 each. Me and about 7 other guys also build and repair cheap ass computers for good cash. We had an 8th guy...but he went off to MIT last year Build a computer for $300, sell it for $700, split it up a littel. It adds up quick, you just have to be creative. heh Im only in debt -$320
Old 6th July 2005
  #30
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by JulianBrightnes
Check out 'Sex Machine' by JB (studio version)...also a Squeek in the kick pedal
Same brand of pedal - "Speed King". They ALL squeak. I can hear all this stuff, have always noticed the "anomalies" and don't really care. That long list of stuff brought it home - you're spending a lot of time attaching importance to random stuff. Seriously - they were there to make music, and make music they did. Sure, there are probably some purpose-built things, but a lot of it is just the band playing and the engineers capturing the music and the vibe of the moment as it happened.

Eddie Kramer has been quoted a lot of times saying something to the effect of "COMMIT! print effects to tape, do whatever, it's about capturing the emotions of THAT MOMENT, not putting off decisions." His point, as I take it, is that even the same group of people, musicians and engineers together, will make different choices at a different time, and that's not totally what recording is all about. The group comes together at a time and a place, after eating certain food and having a particular conversation, experiencing the weather, etc - all that stuff plays into it and the SAME SONG will be different on a DIFFERENT DAY - so be aware of it. If the slap delay on drums makes them play differently, print it, what the hell....it's music! Make a decision!
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