Musical Rooms

February 22, 2008

Musical Rooms Part 14: Dry County

Filed under: Interviews,Music,Musical Rooms Series — by Sinéad Gleeson @ 8:23 am
Tags:

dryroom

“Each member of Dry County has their own individual recording space with a computer running Cubase SX or Ableton Live and filled with various noise making bits and pieces and most likely prefer to work in these spaces. But as a band, during the recording of Unexpected Falls, our favourite recording space was actually a house we rented in Shillelagh, Co. Wicklow. ‘Gaynors’ Place’ was a detached house on a hill overlooking the mountains with the closest neighbour about a mile away, so we could really turn stuff up. It had several great rooms for recording, all producing very different results. The living room, and our main recording area, had wooden flooring and a high ceiling and we found everything just sounded brilliant in it. There was also a conservatory which we used quite a lot for guitar takes. Proper studio heads will tell you these environments are a ‘big no-no’ but we don’t really stick to the rules of recording and we ended up with some amazing sounds which made it to the final mix of Unexpected Falls. One of the things which stands out for me and something I’ll never forget the sight of was our vocal booth which we built out of open doors, chairs, broom handles and duvets. It was very claustrophobic but again it worked for us and a lot of the final vocal takes were performed here.

While recording and writing it was very important that we all felt comfortable and like we were in our own personal recording spaces with all our gear. So we all pretty much brought our whole home studios with us, both the expensive equipment (synths, samplers, effects units etc.) and the cheap and sometimes broken toys and gadgets (Speak ‘n’ Spell, stylophones, Autoharp), which are all so important to the Dry County recording process). The most important piece of equipment for us, though, has to be our main PC running Cubase SX with all its weird and wonderful plug-ins.

All in all we spent three separate four-day stints at ‘Gaynors’ Place’ writing, recording, mixing and listening from about 10am to 2am. We had a couple food breaks in there, of course, although I forgot to eat quite a lot. This was probably because it was such an easy place to work in, it was comfortable and in the back arse of nowhere, so we knew we weren’t annoying anybody.

The best thing about the space was the mouse who lived by the fireplace in the log bucket and we’ll definitely be going back there to visit him and of course to record the next Dry County album.”

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Dry County are nominated for this year’s Choice Music Prize. They play the Choice Music Prize gig in Vicar Street on February 27th, Childline Rocks @ The Academy, Dublin on February 28th, The Spirit Store, Louth on March 7th, Black box, Belfast on March 21st and various UK dates in April. For more information on the band, including tracks, visit www.myspace.com/drycounty05.

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