#1
First off, I hardly know anything about recording.

I want to record some stuff with my band in a live setting (not at a gig, just all playing together so we don't have to record separate tracks). I'd like the recordings to have that raw cassette sound. Kinda like this http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xf5Skw61t1A (minor threat demo)

How would I go about doing this. What equipment would I need?

Any advice is appreciated
#2
To record, you need either a multitracker or an interface so you can hook up to your PC. Go read the Interfaces sticky for recommendations on both. As you're looking to record your band, I'd probably recommend getting a multitracker so you don't have to take your PC to wherever you're practicing. There's also less of a learning curve with multitrackers so as you're only looking for a basic recording they'll probably suit you better.

However, you don't want "that raw cassette sound". It's a myth and is merely an excuse for poor quality. Even a cheap 2nd hand digital multitracker will give you better quality than you'd get from old cassette based kit.
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#3
I know exactly the aesthetic. I had a band record here a few years ago that was going after this exact sound.

Haha... found their old myspace.... http://www.myspace.com/thesubversives/music

I did that almost ten years ago when I was first getting into this. I used cheap gear and captured their sound live off the floor. The singer was in the bathroom, and the guitar amp was at the bottom of the basement stairs. The bass was recorded direct. The drummer, bass player and guitarist were all in the main room so they could see each other. Monitoring was done with headphones.

The "live off the floor" aspect was very important.

The other thing that was really important was not using too much processing in the mix. I used very little EQ, compression, etc. I just tamed what really needed it, and set the levels and did some panning and that was pretty much it, as I recall.

Although my gear now is a lot better, if that same band came to me today, I'd approach it the same way.

That said, if you deliberately want to make things sound less-than-spectacular, choosing what would be conventionally the "wrong" mic for the job might yield some interesting results. I have an old AKG mic that sounds "lo-fi" on literally anything I put in front of it. Aside from that, though, maybe try a small-diaphragm condenser on the kick, and a pair of mis-matched dynamic mics as drum overheads.

Another thing is this... Putting the mics up really close to whatever you're recording minimizes the influence of the room. So... the converse is also true. Move the mics back further than you might otherwise to get some of that trashy room sound. (assuming you are like most people and have a trashy room sound.... practically any room that hasn't been treated will sound like @ss....)

Lots of presence on the drum overheads will make it sound more open and trashy - that "garage-y" kind of sound. In a great studio, they call it the "John Bonham" sound. Without great gear and a great room, the results are a little less perfect. Go with it.

CT
Could I get some more talent in the monitors, please?

I know it sounds crazy, but try to learn to inhale your voice. www.thebelcantotechnique.com

Chris is the king of relating music things to other objects in real life.
#4
Quote by GaryBillington
However, you don't want "that raw cassette sound". It's a myth and is merely an excuse for poor quality. Even a cheap 2nd hand digital multitracker will give you better quality than you'd get from old cassette based kit.


There is thruth to this. But still, you can get some nice tape-like compression if you run f.e. your drum-bus (slightly overdriven) through a decent cassette deck (mind a mint cassette) and back and incorporate that your to full mix at some level. Also mastering your daw-based recording through a cassette-tape is something that the producers 'round here are doing in the lo-fi and HC scene. Maybe I should press that this mainly concerns post-production. Still...

Just because a format is (quite) outdated that does not mean that there is no advantage to be had from it.

I know this might sound ridiculous - and I don't mean that this the way to go in a quest for a 'raw' sound - but there is to some extent to be learned from the ways of the records that originated from this kind of scene. It is very context-sensitive but as a rule-of-thumb, I somewhat scorn advice that rules out tools just because of their obseletance (that pretty much isn't a word).
Last edited by Keskimaki at Mar 29, 2013,
#5
Quote by Keskimaki
obseletance (that pretty much isn't a word).


No, but obsolescence is.

I started recording with a four-track cassette recorder. It'd be a nightmare to have to go back to working with cassette tapes.

CT
Could I get some more talent in the monitors, please?

I know it sounds crazy, but try to learn to inhale your voice. www.thebelcantotechnique.com

Chris is the king of relating music things to other objects in real life.