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Current Tape Reviews

SPOTLIGHT 98: Make Us Happy
 
Artist Name:
Simon Scardanelli
  Title:
SPOTLIGHT 98: Make Us Happy
 
Date Posted:
June 2016
 
Genre:
Folk
Equipment Used:

PreSonus Studio One 3 DAW on computer with Metric Halo ULN-2 interface. Mics: AKG C 414 EB, Gefell UM 57, Sennheiser MD 421. Monitoring: PMC TB2 and Sub with Hafler DH200 power amp, Genelec 1029A active monitors, Audio-Technica ATH-910 headphones.

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Production Notes & Credits:

"Make Us Happy" is a male vocal folk song. Simon wrote, recorded, mixed and produced the track. He also played the guitars, mandolin, bass, and sang the vocals. Additional musicians on the recording were Javier Forero on cajon and percussion, Anja McCloskey on accordion, Paul Walker on clarinet, and Philippe Guyard on soprano sax.

Reviewed By: Marty Peters
Rating: 5
This month's Spotlight is a spectacular effort, chock full of charm and whimsy, wrapped up in an exotic package full of heavy-duty chops and tones.

Right out of the gate we were taken with the sheer size of the sound that Simon achieved in his mix. The song sounds, for lack of a better term, "full" through our monitors, but not in any way crowded. Rather, each sound source is so well recorded and presented that the overall presence of the mix seems to bloom. Analyzing recordings is always a thrill for us (yeah, we're a little funny that way) and analyzing great tracks is even better... so let's take a closer looksee, shall we?

One of the terms that we often use here at Readers' Tracks is "shadows and light" -- how contrast benefits a recording. For an ideal example, look no further than the juxtaposition between Simon's round full bass and the soft but crisp percussion sounds that propel the track. No competing frequencies or masking in sight! The guitar adds to the movement of the track with its country-flavored strum pattern, while the uber-dry lead vocal sits right up in the mix, leading us straight down the merry path into the spooky chorus with its fine vocal harmonies.

All that goodness aside, the icing on the cake to our ears are the horns and the accordion, each beautifully recorded and mixed. It's here that "Make Us Happy" takes on the exotic nature that is so very appealing in our opinion. Fantastic work by all involved!

Lastly, kudos again to Simon for his excellent mix. Combining this many disparate sounds into a cohesive unit is no mean feat. Bravo, sir!

Suggestions: We hope all of you listeners will enjoy this brilliant effort as much as we did. No suggestions are needed from us; Simon and friends are doing quite well on their own!

Summary: Superb.

Contact: Simon Scardanelli, simon@scardanelli.com


About: Marty Peters

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