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Look at the bendy guitar!!!

The interesting thing about this set of recordings is this is the moment I first adopted digital multitrack audio recording on my home PC. Thinking back, it was almost like alchemy to be able to record high-quality audio and multitrack it without any degradation.

Using a Guillemot high-end (for the time) sound card and the bundled Quartz Audiomaster software, I began to lay down these tracks. Before I was using four-track recording, if I was lucky bouncing down in stereo pairs and now I was able to mix from five or six stereo pairs, effectively turning me into a 12-track digital recorder. If I remember clearly, an eight-track cassette recorded would have cost over £1000 at the same time, so my investment of £200 for the computer equipment seemed like a saving to me.

The “concept” behind these recordings was that I was going to just record with guitar and no rhythm track. For years, I’d been jamming to a drum machine and I thought, “Hey, wouldn’t it be good fun if the guitar was the sole rhythm track?” And so the rhythm guitar on these pieces lead from the front. It was also a conscious decision to keep keyboards and percussion to a minimum, it was going to be my guitar album. No guitar synths were used in the making of these recordings!

In terms of equipment, I am using my newly-bought (at the time) Fender Fat Strat pumped into the Digitech RP12 FX pedal, the bass was my Yamaha and the original versions featured synth sounds from a Yamaha MU50 tone generator. However, this time around everything was done with software synths within Sonar X1.

The really interesting thing about this collection of recordings is that they are sequenced almost chronologically so you can hear my progression as a player and as a recordist as I go along. It’s a real organic album, which despite its various shortcomings, still makes me smile in places.

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