The Hatcliffe House Tapes Vol. 12 - Tools and Techniques

by The Hatcliffe House Tapes

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about

Volume 12 and the final chapter in the Hatcliffe House Tape series.


...TOOLS...


-Equipment List Hatcliffe House Studio 2001-2012-

-Computers/Consoles:-

Laptop
Playstation 1 (Music Generator/Music 2000/Fluid)
Playstation 2 (MTV Music Generator)
Various PC's

-Software:-

Ableton Live 5
Ableton Live 8
Arturia Storm
Native Instruments Limelite Solo
Propellerheads Reason
Sony Soundforge Acid Pro
Various Free VST Plugins

-Recording Equipment:-

Casio Song Star Dual Cassette Karaoke Machine
Portable Radio/Cassette Recorder
Sony MZ-N510 Minidisc Recorder
Technics sl-eh790 Stereo System/Cassette Recorder/Record Player
TEAC CD-RW890MKII-B CD Recorder
Various Cassette Player/Recorders
Various DVD Players
Various Video Player/Recorders

-Mixers:-

Akai APC40
Numark CDX CD Decks x2
M Audio NRV 10
Peavey MP600 Power Amp Mixer (B)
Pioneer DJM500 Mixer

-Synthesizers/Keyboards/Organs/Drum Machines:-

Air Organ (B)
Casio Rapman Keyboard
Korg Electribe EA-1
Korg Electribe EA-1 MKII (B)
Korg Electribe ER-1 MKII (B)
Korg ElecTribe SX (ESX-1) (B)
Korg MS20 Legacy USB Controller
Korg MS2000 (B)
Korg Monotribe
Korg Monotron Delay
Korg Kaoss Pad 1 (B)
Korg Kaoss Pad Quad
Novation Supernova II (B)
Roland SH-201
Roland MC-303 Groovebox
Yamaha DJX-2 Keyboard
Yamaha Electone EL-100 Organ
Yamaha Portasound PSS-470 (B)
Yamaha DD-20 Electronic Drum Kit (B)
Yamaha DTX500K Electronic Drum Kit (B)

-Various Instruments/Mics/Effects:-

Acoustic Guitars (B)
Amps (B)
Bongos (B)
Challenge VP Bass (B)
Drum Kits (B)
Effect Pedals(MultiFX/Distortion/Overdrive/Compressor/Delay/Reverb/Flanger/Chorus/Ring Modulator etc...) (B)
Flutes (B)
Found Objects/Everyday Sounds (Wind/Radiators/Clocks/Boxes/Bins/Toys Etc...)
Kazoo
Microphones (B)
Electric Violin (B)
Guitars (B)
Percussion (Tambourine/Triangle/Shakers/Rattlers/Found Objects etc...)
Sitar (B)
Violin (B)


(B) = Borrowed Equipment

I would like to thank everyone who has lent me musical equipment over the years, without you alot of these tracks would of never have been made...

Craig/Rob/Simon/Phil/Cooper/Dean/Sanders/Karl/Anth/Tim/Jason/Casper and Beaney for Computer Spares and Repairs.


...TECHNIQUES...


As you can see on the equipment list, the equipment wasn't the best, we made use of what we had and tried to make as interesting sounds from them as we could. Most of the recordings were improvised, coming from experiments with the equipment through an array of effects to modulate and twist the sounds so they sounded nothing like the original sound. Creating a sound pallet for me
to mix live over the top of either Craig or Rob, playing more conventional instruments, with effects over the master channel to help blend the overall sound together.

At first the recordings went straight onto cassette tape, before i got a
computer around 2003. The computer opened up so many possibilities for recording, especially multi tracking and editing. Although we always used the computer for recording after that point, i still to this day record the final mix back onto tape, then back onto the computer, to get that vintage feel you can only capture through recording onto tape. Everything was also run through a
Peavey Amp/Mixer which gave off a nice hiss and reverb too. It made the recorded sound more live and real, rather than polished and faked. Craig and Rob came from a band background and I was a synth and sound/visual production nerd...I still am. We were all into our own music styles, but met in middle when it came to post punk, new wave, krautrock and psychedelic music. We were bored of the music scene, especially the rock scene at the time and wanted
to do something new, taking influence from past masters like CAN/Joy Division/Pink Floyd/Kraftwerk/Cabaret Voltaire/Tangerine Dream/BBC Radiophonic Workshop...the list goes on and on. I was also making alot of dance music at the same time too, that's how i started off in music production and i have never stopped, my next series will see/hear my solo electronic music recorded at Hatcliffe House during this same time period; under my Acrelid alias.

At the time i was a big fan of Labels like Warp/Rephlex/Ghostbox and alot of influence came from artists like Richard D. James, Broadcast, Boards of Canada, The Advisory Circle and Autechre. These were artists who were doing something
very interesting with music at the time and helped push the art form forwards, in many cases taking a step back to move forward. It was discovering Krautrock, New Wave and Library music that really kick started things off with me wanting to explore working with guitarists/bassist and drummers in a more
conventional format, rather than recording solo electronic experiments by myself. This all started off when i was younger, i was given a cassette tape compilation called "2000 Girls and 1 Guitar" coming from a Rave background this opened me up to all sorts of Space/krautrock gems, the tape started with Can
"Spoon Live" then moved onto Neu "Neuschnee" these two tracks alone blew my mind. The cassette continued through a krautrock and new wave odyssey, with such greats like Faust/Kraftwerk/Cabaret Voltaire/Cluster/Stereolab etc... making an appearance to my ears for the very first time. I thank Craig Bennett to this day for that tape as it took my music in totally different and new directions. The tape was so well put together as Mr Bennett is a master at compilation albums, each track seemed to roll into the other, seamlessly. This
and my DJ background and love for mixtape culture, is why i decided when compiling The Hatcliffe House Tape recordings, to mix them together into volumes, finding tracks which fit a feel or genre, which roll into each other. Hoping to recapture that feeling i had when listening to that tape for the first time, and with hope, new listeners can share that same experience with this series.
Another big influence was the Hauntology scene what was emerging at the time, through labels like Ghostbox and the work of Broadcast and Boards of Canada. This appeal for vintage electronica got me wondering down all sorts of strange library music avenues, a never ending treasure trove of forgotten sounds and sonic exploration, which i am still exploring to this day. The BBC Radiophonic Workshop got me re-interested in exploring and experimenting with the tape format, something which had seemed to of disappeared at the time with the rise of digital technology, but i am happy to see it re-emerging today.

I am a self taught musician and producer and in the days before i had
access to knowledge through the internet, i had to work stuff out for myself as i didn't know anyone into the same sort of stuff i.e. synths. I didn't get my first midi lead until 2005, i used to sync everything up manually and cut out the parts that went out of sync, syncing up layers on my CD decks, using a DVD player as a sampler. I had a CD burner, which i used to record layers on to,
The purchase of Ableton 5 was a massive help when syncing up audio layers and made multi tracking/Editing and looping more possible, also i could add effects from Ableton straight onto the recording channel and effect things live whilst recording. Craig and Rob used to come round to the flat regularly, Craig i have known since school and is one of my oldest friends and Rob i met through
a mate who introduced us and throughout boredom we just started jamming, plug the guitar or bass in and jam along to a track i had set up at the time. This evolved over time as we became more involved in what we were making. I started to acquire alot of borrowed equipment as people started to hear our experiments and lent us the equipment they weren’t using at the time, on loan. So the spare room in my flat after my lodgers had moved out, turned into a studio, a drum kit in a flat was a bit cheeky, but i got away with it by recording loops and layers during the day while the other Tennant was at work,
then mix the layers in ableton at night. Craig and Rob would come round for a session, record a load of stuff, then go home and i would be left to mix it all together as i pleased, unless like in many instances, we nailed it in one take. To be honest I used to record nearly everything into one layer up until a few years ago when i got an audio interface which allowed
me to record multiple layers at once. This meant we had to get things right on that take, notes, audio levels and the mix or the whole recording would be ruined. So it had to be tight, which was a pain in the arse in the early days before i figured out Midi and took alot of multiple takes to get right, but it's very enjoyable for me listening back and wondering...how did i do that with what we had. I would of liked to have done a full equipment list on each track on the album artwork to show this process, but my memory failed me in too many instances, so i just stuck to a summary and full equipment list at the end, for the listener to decipher. In all i recorded over 300 hours worth of music in my time between 2001-2012 at Hatcliffe House. This first Hatcliffe House Tapes series is a small fraction of that.

Before i move onto my next compilation series of archive releases I would like to thank everyone who has ever visited Hatcliffe House, all my Family, Friends, Acquaintances, Musicians and Random People. Without you this music would have never of been possible and it helped shape who i am today.


Thank you
John Lee Richardson

credits

released February 4, 2016

Music by:

John Lee Richardson
Craig Tomlin
Rob Distant

Recorded at Hatcliffe House
Circa 2001-2012

Remastered and Mixed by
John Lee Richardson 2015
at The Saints Room

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John Lee Richardson UK

Bedroom Musician/ Artist/Synth Creator/Video Maker/Dream Weaver/Sonic Explorer/Analog Adventurer

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