#1
I'm looking into getting a decent quality E.P done for my band and i've come across a dilemma. I came across this studio that would give us a really nice quality E.P for about 900 dollars. Where the dilemma comes in is under the question of how much time do we need to spend in the studio. The studio would give us three days to record everything, roughly 7 hours a day. The argument stands between me and my singer on whether that is enough time. I can understand his point of view in that it may not be enough time to record everything, but to what extent. He personally wants to spend 3 days on each song, equaling out to 15 days total. I was wondering if his expectation of time in the studio is farfetched and inappropriate. He has more studio time then I do when it comes to electric based music, but i feel like 3 days would simply kill us in both the wallet and with wasted time.

tldr; How much time should we expect to be in a studio for? is three days too short to record five songs? What is pushing it?
#2
Quote by IfellFromHeaven


tldr; How much time should we expect to be in a studio for? is three days too short to record five songs? What is pushing it?


It all depends on loads of things really,

do you all know your parts inside out?
how good is your drummer at keeping time?

stuff like that, also it depends how you set out your time and if you are productive enough.
#3
900 dollars?

Hell, for that cash you could buy the gear needed to make pro-quality yourself(if you know what you need and how to use it)
#4
Make sure you guys know your parts in and out and everything is tight before you get to the studio. Then laying everything down should only take a few tries for each part.
#5
If you guys are competent at your instruments, know your parts, and can play to a click, three days should be enough for five songs. Day 1 would be mainly for tracking drums and bass, day 2 for guitar overdubs and starting the vocal overdubs, and day 3 for completing the guitars and vocals.

As long as the engineer knows what he's doing, and the band knows the songs, three days should be enough time to record 5 songs. I personally recorded a 5 songs EP (though they ended up only going with three songs) for a band in two 8 hour sessions. One day for drums and bass, one day for guitars and vocals. They decided on 3 songs instead of 5 because it fit the vibe of the EP better, but we got 5 songs completed.
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#6
Quote by Orryn
900 dollars?

Hell, for that cash you could buy the gear needed to make pro-quality yourself(if you know what you need and how to use it)

Peavey 5150 - £1000
Shure SM57 - £100
Apple iMac - £1200
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#7
If you guys practice like mad and know your songs like the back of your hand, its certainly possible. It really just depends how good you guys are and how picky you're going to be, as well as how quickly you tire of playing.

Quote by Orryn
900 dollars?

Hell, for that cash you could buy the gear needed to make pro-quality yourself(if you know what you need and how to use it)

I'm sorry, but $900 is not nearly enough money to buy enough gear to record a full band and get "pro-quality."
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#8
Quote by Twistedrock
Peavey 5150 - £1000
Shure SM57 - £100
Apple iMac - £1200
A great mix - Priceless.


I guessed you missed the "if you know what you need and how to use it" part


Quote by MatrixClaw
If you guys practice like mad and know your songs like the back of your hand, its certainly possible. It really just depends how good you guys are and how picky you're going to be, as well as how quickly you tire of playing.


I'm sorry, but $900 is not nearly enough money to buy enough gear to record a full band and get "pro-quality."


Perhaps not enough to record an entire band at the same time, but one by one, enough.
Last edited by Orryn at Feb 7, 2012,
#9
Quote by Orryn
Perhaps not enough to record an entire band at the same time, but one by one, enough.

Unless you're only planning on using like 2 mics on the drumset, you'll still need a high quality interface, cables, stands, plugins, a computer powerful enough to handle the job, etc.

A good interface and overheads will use up that $900 pretty quickly, let alone buying a vocal mic and kick, snare and tom mics.
Quote by Dave_Mc
I've had tube amps for a while now, but never actually had any go down on me
Quote by jj1565
maybe you're not saying the right things? an amp likes to know you care.





www.SanctityStudios.com
#10
Quote by Orryn
I guessed you missed the "if you know what you need and how to use it" part


Perhaps not enough to record an entire band at the same time, but one by one, enough.



Also you need a room with a good accoustic. Finding one is hard, and making one is costly, yet it's critical if you wanna achieve a quality recording and mix.
Last edited by ShevanelFlip at Feb 7, 2012,
#11
That's really pushing it for your first time in the studio. The last band that recorded (it was also their first time) a full 6 song EP with me took about 30 hours which didn't include drum tracking or drum editing (programmed drums).

3 days a song is a bit overkill; I'd say a day a song is a lot more realistic and reasonable. vocals are probably going to take a lot longer than any of you think.

If you have any means of doing some pre-production stuff by yourselves, I would highly recommend doing so. Every band I've worked with has always ended up changing quite a bit of their songs once they hear how it sounds recorded; if you're trying to knock everything out in 3 days you won't have the time to experiment with your songs. Pre-production will help a lot with this and you'll be able to go in knowing exactly how you want everything.
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#12
Quote by Orryn
900 dollars?

Hell, for that cash you could buy the gear needed to make pro-quality yourself(if you know what you need and how to use it)


No, you can't. Mics, Pro Gear, Room Treatment, Software, Hardware, Monitors, etc.

For a "pro-setup" would cost you well over 2k.
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#13
As both a recording (and touring) musician and an intermediate level engineer (I believe) I would say this: If you just want to do a demo I would imagine you could get maybe a three or four track EP recorded over the three days if you're well rehearsed and your gear is in good condition and set up for the recording (new strings/skins and properly tuned drums) though I'd expect the engineer to probably spend a fourth day mixing (in many cases, unfortunately, he probably won't spend that whole day mixing it unless he is still trying to get his name out there but will still charge for the extra day), and if that is all you want then $300 a day is a good rate (it cost my band £300 a day for 4 days in 2009 when we were rushing to get some material with our new singer to sell at gigs etc.).

Realistically, don't expect pro-release quality from a session of this magnitude though and don't expect the engineer to have you highest on his priority list if you're going to the average run-of-the-mill guy, as there are a lot of people out there making their day to day living off bands like you guys (and us, when we were a bit naiive and I was too shy to recording to do it for us) so they can make ends meet until their next major project comes along.

If you want to track a full album (say 8-10 songs) I would say a minimum of three days on drums alone and preferably a whole week (5-day working week) - whether you can afford to do that sort of thing is something you'd need to discuss and consider what it's going to achieve, depending on your ambitions as a band, but the drums are the most important thing to track properly in a studio environment in my opinion and they set the foundations for the rest of the album. It is then a case of how good you guys are at playing the rest of the tracks in time with the drums, and how accurate your performances are, but if the drummer was in the 'semi-pro' level of performance I'd say you'd probably need the engineer to spend a day or so editing the tracks closer to perfection, unless your drummer is experienced in playing to a click track in which case it may be a lot quicker and just a case of the engineer tidying up any mishits/ghost notes etc. and then guitars may take another three to five days depending on complexity of parts, how many parts the songs have, and if it's mainly just rhythm or if you have lots of lead lines too (which take a lot longer to get right, usually!). Guitars can be done easier, if budget is an issue, and you may be able to do those yourself going direct into some decent amp sims or if you are good enough at engineering yourself. Certainly they're less tough to get right than the drums anyway and rely less on their environment unless you're recording acoustic or mainly with distant/room mics.

Bass is probably the easiest thing to track, and can again be done like the guitars though if you choose to mic up a bass amp make sure you have nothing in the room that will vibrate or rattle too much. Probably only take a couple of days to do bass right.

As for vocals, well that depends mainly on your singer(s) and their stamina levels. Some singers can belt out two or three songs a day, others may only keep their voice long enough for a few takes a day before they start to tail off and struggle to hit notes with the same power and accuracy - the key thing here is just how pedantic you're going to be about getting great vocal performances. Vocals are more like drums and really should be done in a properly treated booth or studio, as they can sound absolutely awful if tracked in a small boxy room that has nasty acoustics, especially as condensor mics tend to pick up high end slapback echo/reverb in a room a lot more than the dynamics used typically on guitar and bass.


You need to think about what you guys can afford, and what you need from the recording. If you only have a small following and just want something to sell for a couple of quid (or should I say 'bucks' ) at gigs then I strongly suggest you just do three to four well-tracked songs, rather than stretching yourselves to do a whole album that you can't really afford and won't breakeven from.
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#14
It can be done, but you have to plan your time meticulously. If you can do everything in one or two takes tops then you should be ok. But the time specified doesn't really allow much margin for error, so if things go wrong you'll be struggling. Are you studio experienced to some extent? If not, I'd say maybe a bit longer, 5 or 6 days maybe. 3 is a challenge for all the parts plus mixing for 5 songs. But as I say, plan ahead and know the parts inside out, you might have a chance.
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#15
Just wanna say thank you all for your input, it really helped a lot, and helped me focus my band into what it is exactly we need to do.
#16
Dont waste your time on a professionally produced EP - just record a one or two track demo in good quality and use the leftover cash for design,duplication, promotion, and generally getting your name out there!