Artist Name: Pieces Title: Second Hand Man Genre: Rock/Classic Rock Rating:
Mac Pro tower running Apple Logic Pro 10.3.3 (tracking, mix) and Harrison Mixbus 32C (mastering). Neumann KH310A monitors. Warm Audio, Lindell Audio, and Trident preamps. Microphones by Audio-Technica, Cascade, beyerdynamic, Sennheiser, and AKG. Gibson Les Paul Jr., Epiphone Dot 30, and Duesenberg Starplayer TV guitars, Lakland 44-94 USA bass. Guitars recorded through VOX AC30, bass recorded direct and through AC30 for overdrive.
Plug-ins: Tracking: Brainworx bx_console N, FabFilter Pro Q2, Pro-MB and Pro-C 2. Reverbs: Brainworx bx_rooMS, Sound Toys Little Plate, and Logic Space Designer (for guitars and vocals). Instrument and vocal buses: Soundtoys Decapitator and Radiator, Waves SSL, and Slate Virtual Mix Rack FG-Stress. Stereo bus: Waves J37, NLS, and SSL Buss Compressor. Mastering: bx_XL V2, Eiosis Air EQ Premium.
Production Notes & Credits
“Second Hand Man” is a male vocal rock song. Chris Martin sang lead and harmony and played rhythm guitar, Tom Copland played lead and rhythm guitar, George Storey played the bass and sang harmony, and Craig Geurin rounded things out on drums. The track was written by Chris, George, and Tom; George handled all of the tracking, mixing and mastering in his home studio.
Reviewed By Marty Peters
This month’s SPOTLIGHT is a driving band effort from George and Pieces. As you loyal readers know, the majority of our submissions come from one-person operations, and as much as the quality of that output has improved over the years, it still thrills us no end to hear the collaborative efforts of a good old fashioned rock band! Let’s dive into the track and check things out.
One of the huge benefits of a band scenario is a real drum kit, and this track is no exception. As good as today’s software drum programs can be—and make no mistake, they are superb—realistic programming takes both time and skill, and rarely if ever yields the same result as a well played and recorded kit, particularly if drums are not one’s principal instrument. Fortunately, Craig delivered a fine performance here and George captured it beautifully. We absolutely love the sound of the fat snare drum and the thick tom tom buildups.
George’s full but articulate bass provides a solid partner to the rich kick drum, and he has done a great job panning his slashing electric guitars away from the center of the stereo field, allowing each instrument its own voice. Moving on to the vocals, George tells us in his production notes that he and Chris stacked multiple layers of harmonies a la the Beatles to achieve a super full sound for the background vocals… and hey, it worked out pretty well for those guys, so why not?
Lastly, kudos to George for providing a controlled yet exciting mix of the track. He achieved great separation of his sound sources via frequency management and panning, yet still managed to glue the mix together without overprocessing. Rock music was born from rebellion and energy, but in our opinion it often falls victim to the paralysis of perfection these days, losing its essence in the bargain. Not so here—well done!
In addition to some fine performances and recording chops, we are hearing a lot of fun in George’s submission, and that’s a good thing, as Martha Stewart would say. Four friends working together towards a common goal is a joy, one we encourage you all to try whenever possible.
Long live rock!