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Current Tape Reviews

Show Me The Numbers
Artist Name:
Brian Bethke
Show Me The Numbers
Date Posted:
November 2011
Rock and Pop
Equipment Used:

PC running Syntrillium Cool Edit 2.0; Behringer Eurorack UB1222FXPro mixer; MXL 990 condenser mic; Johnson electric guitar through a Digitech processor "I bought at a pawn shop 13 years ago", Ovation Applause acoustic guitar, Yamaha PSR19 keyboard, and "one beer-filled drummer!"

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Production Notes & Credits:

"Show Me The Numbers" is a male vocal rock song. Brian did it all with some help from Derrick Beiderman on the drums, in his country studio some miles away from Eau Claire, Wisconsin. By Brian's own admission, "It was a very primitive recording. The acoustic guitar and lead vocal were recorded with one MXL 990 in the middle of the room while we played a live take. After that I spent two days layering different vocal, keys and electric guitar... I have recorded all my albums in this primitive studio and I am a full time professional musician using very unprofessional equipment."

Reviewed By: Marty Peters
Rating: 3
Recording: Wait a minute here, a lo-fi recording done with minimal gear in a cabin outside of Eau Claire, Wisconsin? Funny, we were just reading an article in the weekend New York Times Magazine about a guy that had that same idea... a feller named Bon Iver, hangs with Kanye West these days, or so it claimed there in the news. Ah, whatever.

Brian has submitted a damn fine tune here in a lo-fi sort of way. We love the vocal recording and the creative use of panning throughout. The synth pad drifts in and out sans distraction, and the drums come across pretty well considering they were tracked with only one mic. We also really dug the "tape slow down" trick at the intro. Smartly done. That then leaves us with our only complaint, which is the loose distortion on the electric guitar, a bit too "Wreck of The Edmund Fitzgerald" for our tastes.

Suggestions: We have learned to tread very lightly when dealing with all issues lo-fi in our career. The mere suggestion of "Hey, what about adding a bass?" often sends them running straight for their Tom Waits/ White Stripes/ Black Keys recordings, never to be heard from again.

That said, we're a brave lot here at Recording, so here goes: Hey Brian, how 'bout adding a bass to your track? There, we said it. Also, tidying up that distortion would be great while you're at it. Cool, peace, out.

Summary: When in Eau Claire, do as the Eau Claire-eans do.

Contact: Brian Bethke,,
About: Marty Peters

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Kef America

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