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Current Tape Reviews

SPOTLIGHT 97: Stop And Look Around
Artist Name:
Larry Ballereau
SPOTLIGHT 97: Stop And Look Around
Date Posted:
May 2016
Rock and Pop
Equipment Used:

Mac Pro running MOTU Digital Performer 7 and Spectrasonics Stylus RMX. Great River Electronics ME1-NV mic preamp, Pendulum Quartet mic preamp/compressor/de-esser/EQ, AKG C414 and Peluso Microphone Lab 22 47 mics, Sadowski guitars, saxophone.

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Production Notes & Credits:

"Stop and Look Around" is a male vocal rock song. Larry did it all, from writing straight on through to the final mix, at Peak Studio, his home/project studio.

Reviewed By: Marty Peters
Rating: 5
This month's Spotlight is a killin' one-man-band effort that brings a heap of funk to a toneful rock and roll party. From the very start, it is abundantly clear that Larry has got some mature skills in all areas. The arrangement for "Stop and Look Around" is dense, layered, and multi-faceted -- definitely not a job for a newbie, friends! Let's break down Larry's submission and see how this tasty track was built.

Starting from the ground up, Larry has made splendid use of his Spectrasonics Stylus RMX software. The funky beatbox intro groove, combined with the super tight kick/snare/hi-hat, sets the pace for the additional sound sources. We dug the keyboard-derived bass sound, and how's about those Sly and The Family Stone inspired backing vocals? Fantastic!

Speaking of vocals, both the lead and backing parts are expertly arranged, performed, recorded, and presented in the mix. Larry's gear list shows some top notch vocal tools, including AKG and Peluso microphones, as well as mic pres/channel strips from Great River and Pendulum Audio, and he certainly makes the most of them here.

As for the remaining sound sources, the keyboards keep the bar raised high both in performance and tone. The accented, Doobie Bros./Michael McDonald counterpoint playing fits perfectly in the overall scheme.

Saving the best for last, the sax and electric guitar performances are quite simply of a standard that we rarely hear at Readers' Tracks. The sax tone that Larry achieved is simply gorgeous, full, rich, and as they say "like butta"! Even better to our ears is the lead guitar tone. While we are not sure of the exact signal path, the combination of Larry's fingers and the Sadowsky guitar takes his performance into the Larry Carlton/Robben Ford echelon in our opinion -- rarefied air indeed! This is one of the top three guitar tones that we have heard during our 19-year long tenure at RECORDING.

So just to recap, killer songwriting/arranging/programming, massive tones and performances, all wrapped up in a pro sounding mix and all done by one guy. Damn, Larry!

Suggestions: OK, all you one man/woman operators out there, here's your homework... time to go to school.

Summary: Setting a high bar for solo efforts everywhere!
About: Marty Peters

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Kef America

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