looks like matt bonner's signs of passing and medicine stone's
gauge both were recorded somewhere called 'poker hill studio'.
signs of passing and gauge were recorded at poker hill
capps' secluded engineering cauldron a half hour outside burlington,
was recorded digitally through a Yahama O3D console. editing was
done in MOTU's Digital Performer.
signs was mixed through Mackie HR 824 monitors and sent digital
out of the O3D to an Alesis Masterlink CD recorder. gear details:
Joe Meek optical
Symetrix solid state mic pre amps
Lucid A/D convertors
UL 195 (vocals)
CAD E300 (vocals)
Shure SM 57, SM 81, AKG 535s
TC electronics finalizer
Yamaha O3D verb and delay
Joe Meek compressor
was recorded analog to ADAT through a 32-track Mackie mixing board.
digital editing was done in MOTU's Digital
Performer on "snow",
"sure enough", and "burden".
mixing differences included heavy use of a SansAmp
guitar amp simulator (the "cock box"), the
enhance feature of the Joe Meek mic pre amp
(the "fairy dust"), and the large vocalplate
from an Alesis Quadraverb.
is poker hill, anyway?
hill....(here the grizzled storyteller raises one eyebrow at the
eager taverngoer and sips slowly at his mead)....poker hill
is not on any map....
is jerry tubb?
tubb is the resident mastering genius at terra nova digital audio,
in austin, texas. jerry and his wife diane established austin's
first mastering studio and run it with great attention to detail.
nova alums include willie nelson, the dixie chicks, phish, yoko
ono, the butthole surfers, jerry jeff walker, and many others.
long did it take to record signs?
1000 studio hours. joe capps & meb made the first demo in august
2000 (with the exception of "the day in question", which
was laying around as an unfinished demo from the previous winter),
and the last mix was finished in april 2002.
the fuzzy static sound that's at the beginning of "reveal"
with the guitar?
- digital boogers. various pieces of gear which needed to communicate
with each other were mistakenly set to different settings. when
recording was underway, the resultant communication created audible
errors that ended up as fuzz embedded in the track used for one
of the guitar loops.
meb liked the
fuzz, thinking it sounded like some half-scrambled signal from a
distant radio tower. despite capps' periodic aesthetic objections,
with the phone message at the end of "reveal"?
the sample is
an actual message from meb's next door neighbor at the lakehouse.
those sorts of messages were fairly common.
think i hear a phone ringing near the end of "driven".
is there one?
joe capps thinks
so. there may have been an open mic channel during a mix.
meb really play a beer bottle on "driven"? where?
yes - a two-fingered
tap on an open and half-full beer....on the last eighth note ('off
four') of every 2nd bar in the verse and outro.
is jack tanner pouring early in "tanner"?
a glass of VO
the 'tuned wine glass' in the credits for "turning of the stone"?
just what it
sounds like - a smallish wine glass, tuned by filling it with water
until it would ring out at A flat when joe capps flicked it with
long did it take to record gauge?
700 to 900 studio
hours - no one is quite sure. 21 months in calendar time.
is bryan thomas?
thomas is a multi-talented singer/songwriter currently lighting
up albany, new york. he first met most of medicine stone when they
were all at middlebury
college together. check out his superb and always-current site.
is horace beck?
someone named kevin really lose his guitar?
yes. this was
a real voicemail from a student of joe capps. it arrived during
one of the gauge sessions.
the deal with the 'nagging woman at the end of desderata'?
woman' is actress amanda philipson.
that a cigarette being lit afterward as whoever it is walks away
from her nagging?
yes. an american
were recorded on joe capps' deck. it was so cold that the snow actually
is the 'live in the truck' sample thing at the end of dmv?
back in the
dark and eternally snowing winter in jackson/driggs, alec and meb
would stay up spinning tunes and singing (also known as the
disc game), so late and so often that to allow anyone around
them to sleep they'd usually have to go outside to the car, which
most times was alec's truck. after one particularly loud and fevered
session, the practice of ending a night with 3-4 hours of obsessive
tunespinning and a stash of reserve beer (often a cheap twelve of
hamm's from spirits' drive-through in jackson) was christened 'live
in the truck'.
the sample in
question was captured one night in vermont when alec and meb had
pulled over on the way from the 3 needs to the yurt, to have a smoke
and listen to the crickets (on schoolhouse road near the basin harbor
club, at 3:30 am one night in july 1997, for you historians). alec's
portable recorder was running.
is the yurt? what is the yurt?
the yurt was
an apartment over bob & karin hardy's garage, in ferrisburgh,
vt, where alec and meb lived at the beginning of the early gauge
sessions. it was a bit roughed-out; meb's cat rhubarb shared the
place, and she would find her way into the guts of the structure
and periodically could be heard meowing from, for example, the inside
of the bathtub.
is the '3 needs'? are these places in the liner other studios or
the 3 needs
is a bar on college street in burlington, vermont, and is one of
11 (yes, eleven) bars & diners acknowledged in the liner for
being the site of frequent Very Important Meetings.