December 7th, 2007, 06:03 PM
Tracking Live & Live Releases
First off, I want to thank both you, for putting in the time to chat and Pounce for delivering, IMHO, a great interview. You guys discussed some great topics from the perspective of someone who's walking the indie talk. Good job.
Now to the question (s):
Since you have experience behind the desk as a FOH guy and as a studio rat, you've seen the world of audio from a perspective that few guys ever do.
1) Do you find that the live mixing influences your studio sound or vice versa? Are you finding that you're adopting more and more studio techniques in your live world?
2) I run a mobile production company and deal with some indie groups who are striving for even an iota of the success that you have made for yourselves. One of the items we discuss is DVD & Audio CD productions of the band's live performances. Have you considered tracking your band live and using live tracks for any releases? If you have, how does your audience respond to live product?
3)You mentioned the DVD not doing as well as hoped...can you expand on maybe why it didn't seem to fly?
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December 7th, 2007, 08:20 PM
Re: Tracking Live & Live Releases
Those are great questions.
1.) We’re a pretty raw & immediate live band. So if that sound affects our recording style, it’s mostly from a desire to capture that “live energy” in the recordings. But I try not to be limited in the recordings by what we’ve been doing live. I don’t chain myself to it. So I’d say that once the recordings are done, they are more of an influence on our sound. It develops that way. Very basic to start with, capture that and build on it, add to it. Then I’m trying to get as close to recreating the recorded version live while still being spontaneous. Probably the studio techniques inform the live sound more.
2.) & 3.) In 2005 a fan made a video for one of Earwig’s songs with footage he had shot a several different shows. I saw it and thought it was pretty good. So we got with him and shot the band playing the same song directly to the camera (in our practice space) from a few different angles. He edited those shots in with the live footage and “Shazaam!” we had a music video. We didn’t stop there. We went on to film two concerts from 3 camera angles and he edited it all down, we added in some “archive” footage of the band that we had laying around and some photos. That became our DVD “Year Of The Drag” which we put out and toured to support that summer. While we’ve had lots of people who were fans of the band already pick up the DVD release, it didn’t sell all that well on the tour. After seeing our live show, people didn’t really want to buy a DVD, on that tour everyone was always asking “Do you have a CD?”. I think that it’s just not what people wanted. after seeing the band they wanted to buy the CD, that’s what they were used to. Now I’m selling it mostly on the back of the new release. At shows now (and online) I use it as an incentive to buy the CD. You can get the new CD & the DVD together for less than it would cost to buy them each separately and I’ve slowly been selling them that way. We just shot our first “real” (but still very low budget) video. I plan on doing a couple more videos, film some live shows to edit together and have a DVD to go with the next release. The idea is that we’ll have a “download” version of the next release, but also a physical version that pairs the CD up with a DVD of extra video, live, a short documentary etc (all self produced), to add incentive for folks to buy the actual physical release.
We have one "live" album, which was more of an after-thought. It's called 'Bored in Chicago', which is sort of a take on the fact that it was just a cassette recording from the mixing board at a show in Chicago. It's been awhile since we did that release. But people still seem to really mention it and like it a lot. That album is currently out of print, but it's up here : Bored In Chicago
If yr interested enough to listen, I'd suggest the last two tracks - Stain and Wounded Knee.