Thought I’d give another shout-out for this book. It’s a MUST for any home-recordist.
I got this book as a birthday present (thanks Fan & Jodie!), and it’s no exageration to say that it marks a leap forward in my understanding of how to record music, and the quality of the music I’ve recorded.
I’ve found it very, very useful for three reasons:
1) It explains notions of sound recording – and of the nature of sound itself – that previously I only had the haziest idea about/didn’t think it was important to know.
2) It explains, in easy-to-understand terms, the technicalities of how audio recording works, more than you’d get out of a manual: the missing-link between how a thing works and how to get a thing to work for you.
3) The three principles of separation: controlling dynamics, frequency slotting, panning. The chapter on separation alone is worth the asking price.
Some parts are little outmoded (he writes about burning music to CDs), and the internet as a resource for the ‘Guerilla’ recordist gets barely a mention at all. Also, there is a definite slant towards the traditional ‘band’ (ie vocalist/guitarist/drummer); there’s very little on synthesisers and electronic music. That said, there is an excellent section on how to get the best sound out of drum machines/MIDI drum patterns.
And along with all the technical know-how, this book gives you the confidence to have a go at making music with budget equipment and not quail at your lack of resources – in fact makes you feel excited to be doing it with so little.
Put simply: if you apply the principles in this book to your own studio you will hear a marked improvement in the music you record.