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July 2009

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July is hot, and this month's RECORDING is even hotter! This month, we bring you the centerpiece of the modern recorded song... according to many, the most temperamental and difficult and rewarding track you can record... the human voice. In July, Vocals take their rightful place at center stage!

What does a recording session look like from the vocalist's point of view? What happens when a seasoned singer meets an engineer who wants to change how she records her voice -- Magic, or mayhem? Jazz chanteuse Kendra Shank discusses her latest album, Mosaic, and how a new vocal mic wandered into her studio and shook things up.

Joe Albano brings us a great look at how to mingle tracks from a highly proficient lead vocalist with backing vocals from band members who are... shall we say... not so proficient? Rick Barrio Dill talks about coast-to-coast recording sessions with a vocalist hundreds of miles from his band. And we review a lovely vocal mic from MXL and a fun new vocal processor from Electro-Harmonix, too.

And if you want something that's not vocal, we have you covered. In July, we bring you a look at the guitar tone of Stevie Ray Vaughan, a classic bass recording with Carol Kaye, a Mix Workshop on guitar effects, and a hefty helping of in-depth reviews, from the instant satisfaction of the Alesis MasterControl to the deep and detailed perfectionism of Focal's CMS65 monitors, from the portable power of the Audio-Technica ATH-M35 headphone to the widespread wonder and weirdness of Urs Heckman's latest plug-in masterpiece, the enigmatic Uhbik. All this and more, from the voice to the tracks surrounding it... all in the July Recording!

Pick it up now on the newsstand... and so you get your next issue early (and save on cost), why not hit the big red Subscribe Now button on this page and have RECORDING delivered to your door each month?


The Vocalist's Point of View   |   Interviewed by Lorenz Rychner

What goes into a great vocal performance? We ask Jazz singer Kendra Shank and engineer Manfred Knoop about the magic of her new album Mosaic.

We brought you a detailed report on the making of Kendra Shank’s CD A Spirit Free—......Expand


Alesis MasterControl Studio Interface   |   Reviewed by Mike Metlay

High-quality audio interfacing, a control surface, and much more... and it practically sets itself up for you.

When you want to record and mix music on your computer, you have a fair number of options, in the form of a fair ......Expand

Focal CMS 65 Monitors   |   Reviewed by Mike Metlay

Unflinching sonic accuracy in a small-format active speaker.

French speaker maker Focal’s Twin6 Be studio monitors made an impression in our July 2008 issue, when reviewer Justin Peacock called them a “kick in the pants” tha......Expand

Reviewed and Revisited: Audio-Technica ATH-M35 Headphones   |   Reviewed by Mike Metlay

Audio-Technica’s updated headphone design, the ATH-M35, adds portability to power.

Way back in November 2002, I reviewed the ATH-M30 by Audio-Technica, a model that’s still on the market and still well-liked for its excellen......Expand

MXL V87 Microphone   |   Reviewed by Fernando Curiel

This new solid-state mic combines vintage looks with a useful modern sound.

Headquartered in El Segundo, California, Marshall Electronics, the company behind the MXL brand, is known as a manufacturer of, among many other pro......Expand

Plug-in Outlet   |   Reviewed by Devon Brent

U-He Uhbik multieffects bundle.

Mr. Urs Heckmann is at it again, with a plug-in package named for the science fiction novel Ubik by Philip J. Dick. Uhbik may not be “a universe in a spray can” like the original Ubik was, but......Expand

RECORDING's Showcase of Sounds   |   Reviewed by Michael Nickolas

Big Fish Audio Jazz City and Jazz Drums

Big Fish Audio’s Jazz City is a construction kit whereas Jazz Drums is a drum loop collection. Both seek to capture a traditional jazz sound...

Read more in the July 200......Expand

Electro-Harmonix Voice Box   |   Reviewed by Mike Metlay

Easy harmony generation and vocoding in a fun and funky stomp box.

It never fails... at every NAMM show, no matter how many times I circle the convention halls trying to make sure I’ve at least seen everything once, I always......Expand


Vocal Recording—Notes From The Studio   |   Written by Joe Albano

Learn how to deal with blending vocal tracks from the lead singer and his backing guys who are not on the same level of vocal proficiency—create a magic blend against all odds.

Vocals are typically the most up-front element ......Expand

Recording's Vocal Column   |   Written by Rick Barrio Dill

Recording vocals in an Internet world—putting together voices with an engineer on one coast and a singer on the other.

I love technology—it never sits still. It is no longer difficult to work on recording projects with peopl......Expand

The Mixing Workshop, Part 3: Guitars—Reverb, Delay, Compression.   |   Written by Sean Shannon

In the final instalment of our look at creating great guitar mixes, we lay down rules and guidelines for mixing guitars with effects.

It has been a few months since the first two instalments in this series—time to catch up a......Expand

Recording's Guitar Column   |   Written by Joe Albano

In Part 2 of our new series on famous guitar players and their tones, we learn about the strong hands and golden ears of Stevie Ray Vaughan.

To continue our look at classic guitar tones, let’s turn to a player with a distinc......Expand

Recording's Bass Column   |   Written by Dave Martin

Studio ace Carol Kaye made a decision to risk never working with a top-flight arranger again, in order to put magic into a classic pop tune. Learn about “The Way We Were”...

With so many great bassists and so many great song......Expand

Fade Out   |   Written by Scott Dorsey

The Wireless World Is Changing.

Kef America

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