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Peel Sessions

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Peel Sessions

Postby Andrew L. on Thu Aug 05, 2004 6:54 pm

Why do they sound so good? Who’s the current engineer? How many have there been? Why is the Peel Session version of ‘Crow’ about 1 trillion times better than the album version? What’s Maida Vale got that Electrical Audio doesn’t? Other than John Peel.
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Postby johnnyshape on Thu Aug 05, 2004 9:29 pm

Have done two Peel and one Lamacq sessions at Maida Vale.

There are several rooms but in the 90s had SSL E or G desks onto 2" multitrack, all pretty standard outboard etc. as far as I remember. Huge range of mikes (and they like using Coles 4038s everywhere. Was designed for the BBC yer know. (Didn't someone claim Steve started using 4038s after his first trip to Maida Vale with Big Black?)) Live rooms are huge (some can hold orchestras), dampened classical acoustic. I was twice in the 'Bing Crosby room' because it's where he made his last recording. Maida Vale has an atmosphere but it's not a rock n roll place - it's very clean and dull, very neutral and very, very BBC.

The main engineer is called Miti but there are a few guys. You basically have about eight-ten hours to set up, get sounds, track and mix four songs, so there's not a lot of time for mucking about or overdubs. That's the key to good Peel sesh really, being in a good mood to play live in a relatively sterile space, quick and well. So cracking live bands or mid-tour bands have the edge on getting great results. The engineers just get it down simply and 'realistically' on tape and mix it quickly. You're in the very pleasant pub across the road by eight with your cassette.
Oh, and John Peel isn't there, and never is. According to lore the last session he attended featured Jimi Hendrix.


enough?
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Postby Andrew L. on Thu Aug 05, 2004 11:00 pm

CHEERS!
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Postby dah on Thu Aug 05, 2004 11:36 pm

i was in that studio once. the engineer, his name escapes me, showed me the piece equipment that made the Dalek's voice waver so sweetly. i am not a dr. who fan, in fact i have never sat thru an episode, so all i could think of was johnny rotten saying "Exterminate" over and over in Sid and Nancy.

the engineer also told the same story regarding jimi hendrix and john peel. oh! and he got upset with me when i expressed confusion over the "zed" issue. that being the english pronunciation of what americans call "z".
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Postby toomanyhelicopters on Thu Aug 05, 2004 11:40 pm

okay, totally off topic, but the whole "zed" thing got me thinking.

say the letter "h" out loud. okay, now say it again.

that's it.
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Postby dah on Fri Aug 06, 2004 10:31 am

done and done. of course, i can only think of ordering heroin when i say "H" outloud.

"i'll take some h and a small cheese fries"
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