November 2021 - 72

FadeOut
Studio
Feng Shui
Guest Editorial by Aaron J. Trumm
I've lived in a lot of places and built many home studios,
and one time someone came in and said, " This place will
drive you insane. " That was probably because every wall
was covered in ugly yellow egg crate bed foam purchased
from Target-a bad acoustic solution and an even worse
environment to spend time in.
In Houston, we had an 'old man clothes room'-a walk-in
closet stuffed to the brim with an entire wardrobe inherited from
the deceased father of an ex. We squeezed a condenser mic in
there with enough room for a singer and a ukulele. It sounded
great, but it was creepy. A drunken artist vomited in there once,
and somewhere we have the recording.
In Oakland, my space was acoustically ideal-potentially.
We framed a double wall and everything, and I knew how to
treat a room (mostly). For reasons of poverty and ignorance, we
stuffed the double-wall not with fiberglass, but with the clothes
from the old man clothes room. We spray-painted Chinese creativity
talismans inside the drywall, and never installed a door
or window. None of these crazy spaces were sustainable, even
though some of them sounded good and even elicited tons of
creative output.
A reflection of you
Yes, a studio needs to be technically sound, with acoustic treatment,
the right gear, and ergonomics that suit your workflow.
You don't want to be hunting for cables for an hour every time
you have an idea. You don't want your back to hurt from a
crap chair. You don't want headaches from computer screens
you can't see. If you're a mixer, you need accurate monitoring.
You need the right mic(s) for your voice if you're a singer, and
maybe a booth. If you're a drummer, you need space for drums.
But you also need inspiration. You need to want to be there.
You need a bit of studio feng shui.
This looks different for everyone. Trent Reznor once appeared
in an interview with candles dripping on monitors in
a darkened lair. One of my mentors operated from a ghetto
one-bedroom apartment and filled the recording room with little
gifts from clients. Ocean Way Nashville is housed in a 100
year-old gothic stone church. I lined one control room wall with
old CDs, for some reason.
A few tips
While every studio is as unique as its owner, there are some
things I've noticed that you may want to consider:
* Everybody wants a dark lair-until they realize how
depressed they are. Consider some natural light. Acoustics
gets trickier with windows, but daylight can be really refreshing.
* Anticipate change. You may grow out of a particular
phase, so don't lock into passing extremes, like a whole
wall of devil paintings or a ceiling full of pansies raining pollen.
* Consider modular treatment. If you move a lot, you may
want to build sonic treatments that can move with you.
* You'll be there a lot. Certain things can be great at first but
get really overwhelming after a while. Dark red walls are
an example. Bright orange walls. The aforementioned
wall o' CDs. Groupies, whatever.
* Make space. A lot of studios are cramped like a space
capsule. It's fun, but it's inefficient and tiring if you don't
have room to move. At least make yourself some desk
space for writing lyrics and notes.
* Keep it clean. It's tempting to let a studio space reflect your
insane (ingenious?) mental process. But if you die of
dysentery because you left your pudding cup on an amp
for six years, you'll miss the Grammys.
* Make space for others. This may not apply to Deadmau5,
but likely you'll want a collaborator or significant other to
come over at some point. Plan accordingly.
Have fun with it
Half the fun of a studio is making it your own by turning it
into a super inspiring den of mind blowingness. Rather than just
throwing a laptop into a box and hoping for a hit, go ahead
and put a little creativity into your space-it'll feed you for a
long time.
Aaron J. Trumm works in one room with lots of light, moveable
treatments, and a nice little daybed. It's way better than the student
ghetto lair with beer bottle caps and stained sheet music
littering the floor. Discuss on social media @AaronJTrumm.
72 RECORDING November 2021

November 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of November 2021

Fade In
Fast Forward
Studio Upgrade Roundup
Inside the Studio with Mark Hornsby: A Crash Course in Atmos
Plugin Outlet: Slate Digital MetaTune
KRK Systems: KNS 8402
Southern Avenue and the Modern Memphis Sound
Plugin Outlet: Raising Jake SideMinder ME2
Shure MV7 USB Podcast Microphone
RECORDING Show and Tell: Studio Upgrades (2021 Edition)
Plugin Outlet: bx_console Focusrite SC
Novation Circuit Rhythm
Session Log: The AngelHeaded Hipster, Part 11: Home Mixing in Home Studios
Mackie: Onyx16
Alclair: Electro 6 Driver
Plugin Outlet: Arturia FX Collection 2
Inside the Box with Joe Albano: workflow-focused programs and plugins
RME Fireface UCX II 40-channel USB Interface
Readers' Tracks
Fade Out: Studio Feng Shui
November 2021 - Intro
November 2021 - Cover1
November 2021 - Cover2
November 2021 - 1
November 2021 - 2
November 2021 - 3
November 2021 - Fade In
November 2021 - 5
November 2021 - 6
November 2021 - 7
November 2021 - Fast Forward
November 2021 - 9
November 2021 - Studio Upgrade Roundup
November 2021 - 11
November 2021 - 12
November 2021 - 13
November 2021 - 14
November 2021 - 15
November 2021 - 16
November 2021 - 17
November 2021 - 18
November 2021 - 19
November 2021 - Inside the Studio with Mark Hornsby: A Crash Course in Atmos
November 2021 - 21
November 2021 - 22
November 2021 - 23
November 2021 - Plugin Outlet: Slate Digital MetaTune
November 2021 - 25
November 2021 - KRK Systems: KNS 8402
November 2021 - 27
November 2021 - Southern Avenue and the Modern Memphis Sound
November 2021 - 29
November 2021 - 30
November 2021 - 31
November 2021 - 32
November 2021 - 33
November 2021 - Plugin Outlet: Raising Jake SideMinder ME2
November 2021 - 35
November 2021 - Shure MV7 USB Podcast Microphone
November 2021 - 37
November 2021 - RECORDING Show and Tell: Studio Upgrades (2021 Edition)
November 2021 - 39
November 2021 - 40
November 2021 - 41
November 2021 - Plugin Outlet: bx_console Focusrite SC
November 2021 - 43
November 2021 - Novation Circuit Rhythm
November 2021 - 45
November 2021 - Session Log: The AngelHeaded Hipster, Part 11: Home Mixing in Home Studios
November 2021 - 47
November 2021 - 48
November 2021 - 49
November 2021 - Mackie: Onyx16
November 2021 - 51
November 2021 - Alclair: Electro 6 Driver
November 2021 - 53
November 2021 - Plugin Outlet: Arturia FX Collection 2
November 2021 - 55
November 2021 - 56
November 2021 - 57
November 2021 - Inside the Box with Joe Albano: workflow-focused programs and plugins
November 2021 - 59
November 2021 - 60
November 2021 - 61
November 2021 - RME Fireface UCX II 40-channel USB Interface
November 2021 - 63
November 2021 - Readers' Tracks
November 2021 - 65
November 2021 - 66
November 2021 - 67
November 2021 - 68
November 2021 - 69
November 2021 - 70
November 2021 - 71
November 2021 - Fade Out: Studio Feng Shui
November 2021 - Cover3
November 2021 - Cover4
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