Blog

Looking back on 2017

We really went nuts this year, and we’re pretty proud of the records that were tracked and mixed at the studio in 2017. Take a look at our year-in-review, and then get thee to a record store or digitally purchase some local music, and treat your ears! As always, we are constantly astounded by the musicianship in this town, and are so excited to see all these groups back in the studio for their upcoming projects!

2017 Albums L-R

Row 1:
The Devil’s Gold, The Ghosts of Johnson City
Iatrophobia, Outsiders PBR
Damnationland Music For the Wicked Vol III
Going to the Shake-Up/Shake It Up, Bloodshot Bill and Friends
Waiting on and Answer, Andy Penk
MeanMugg
Étire Dans Le Ciel Vide, Forêt Endormie
The Falling of the Pine, The Mallett Brothers Band
First Dance, Susie Pepper Quartet

Row 2:
Vision, Muckie Mittens
No Time Now, Gary Lenaire
Square 1, The Cosmonautz
Crooks, Los Federales
High Water Hobo, The Muddy Marsh Ramblers
Darling, Randi Caswell
Great American Novel, Buck T. Edwards
Psycho Classical, Caleb Hickman
Banana Split, KG Freeze & 300 Calories

Row 3:
A Little Grace, The Reverie Machine
Duck Butt, Nate Gibson
Let It Bully, Bully Mammoth
Great North Band
A Wilderness Left Untamed, Zud
Lost Islands, Richard Parks
Got Another Baby, C. Davis, L. Wray
Vigilance Perennial, Falls of Rauros

Row 4:
Quad
The Desert of When, Noonday Crawlers
Alchemist’s Dream, Mark Tipton and Les Sorciers Perdue
Because Tomorrow, David Grant and The Reveals
Rocket Baby, Rocket J
Wires & Tubes, Leverett
The Razor’s Edge, Black Box Recovery
Ornaments, Builder of the House
Something Came From Nothing, Jeff Beam

Gear Porn 101 – Preamps at Acadia

We firmly believe that great records start with great performances, but capturing them with some top-notch gear doesn’t hurt… Matching the right microphone with the right preamp is the key to getting that energy to translate to the finished product.

There is no one “best” preamp— each unit has its own characteristics. However if we had to choose, our top choice would certainly be our Aurora Audio GTQC. Designed by Geoff Tanner (who designed consoles and custom gear during the golden age of Neve from 1971 thru 1985) this hand-wired Class A channel strip features that classic Neve preamp circuit with an incredibly musical EQ. It also features one of the smoothest, best sounding compressors anywhere (in fact TWO compressors, both a 1176-style FET comp and a LA-2A style opto compressor). This is our go-to pre for both bass and vocals.

Next up is the classic sound of rock and roll— the API 3124. Literally thousands of hit records have been made using exclusively these preamps. The 3124 has four channels and sounds fantastic on rock guitars and on many other sources as well.

When Jason Phelps joined our team, in addition to the GTQC he also brought another piece that we use on almost every session— the Universal Audio 4-710 Twin-finity. This preamp is unique in that it features both a solid state AND a tube preamp circuit on each of the four channels. We can blend between the two circuits, allowing for a clear uncolored sound, or we can drive the tube input and get some nice creamy harmonics going.

We are big fans of ribbon mics here at Acadia. We especially like to pair a ribbon mic with a 57 for tracking guitar amps: the combination of the upper mid boost from the 57 and a fuller tone from the ribbon mic gives us a lot to work with in the final mix. The only challenge with ribbon mics is that they require significantly more gain than many pre’s can provide. That’s not a problem for us with four channels of AEA TRP (The Ribbon Pre). These units are colorless and let the ribbons shine.

Our Grace Designs m101 is another ultra-transparent option we have in the studio, and this pre can also handle ribbon mics well with Grace’s “ribbon” circuit which changes the input impedance, provides extra gain and decouples the +48V power. This pre hasn’t let us down, whether we’re tracking vocals, acoustic guitar, or a kick drum, it’s a versatile option that always results in a clean, articulate sound.

Our Sytek MPX-4A is a well designed, clean and clear four channel workhorse that sounds great on a variety of sources.

Finally, we are lucky to have the use of our Seventh Circle Audio CH02 modular chassis, on loan from Pat at Pat Keane Mastering. Seventh Circle is famous for it’s top quality DIY preamp kits. This particular unit is fully stuffed with eight channels: we have the Neve-style N72 (x2), the super transparent Millenia-esque C84 (x2) plus the API-flavored A12 (x4).

Our gear selection is ever expanding (our next dream purchase is an Aurora Audio GTP8— eight channels of Neve power!)— book a session with us soon and hear them for yourself!

Preacher’s Fire October 2017

A super spooky month of music to look forward to y’all. Most importantly coming up Friday the 13th there are two pretty epic events happening in Portland. First, Into the Aether, featuring our favs. Falls of Rauros, and ALSO, the start of Damnationland’s film screening followed by a live performance from BeeSee, who’s featured on their super rad album soundtrack, a proud product from Acadia! Just try to be bored this month…actually don’t. Go see some great music! If you want to submit shows for November email preachersfire@gmail.com

Here is a list of our other top picks for the month:

Saturday 10/7: Battery Steele at Geno’s 9pm
Thursday 10/12: Lacuna and others at Geno’s 8pm AND Nothing to Fear but Beer Itself, Damnationland Fundraiser at Oxbow on Washington Ave, 9pm
Friday 10/13: Into the Aether at Geno’s starting 6:30pm AND Damnationland 2017 at State 8pm
Saturday 10/14: Into the Aether at SPACE starting 7pm AND Damnationland 2017 at Mechanics Hall all day
Monday 10/16: Pink Martini and VIVA & The Reinforcements at AURA 6:30pm
Wednesday 10/25: Clara Junken and others at One Longfellow 8pm
Friday 10/27: Halloween Spooktacular with Covered in Bees, Pigboat, Johnny Cremains at Empire 9pm
Saturday 10/28: Geno’s Halloween Bash with Hessian & Drivetrain 9:30pm