Entertaining Angels

Modern and accessible rock

The Fabulous Hot Finks

Throwback rock with gutsy vocals and tasty hooks

Brent Kinseth

Intimate acoustic folk

Far Beyond Rescue

Hymns that rock

Mustard and the Works

Melodic rock

Friday, September 20, 2013

We Love YouTube...and The Cleverlys

I was recently scouring YouTube for local and regional rock bands native to the Rocky Mountain region. After searching no fewer than 30 pages of content, I was completely dissatisfied and disgusted. Either the rumors are true that Colorado is pretty lacking in musical talent, or we are home to one of the largest collections of non-SEOed rock band videos in North America.

After more than an hour of looking, I abandoned my search string and tried something totally random—piano rock band plus bluegrass cover. The video below from The Cleverlys came up in the results list and I was instantly intrigued. Either their version of The Bangles' "Walk Like an Egyptian" would be completely pathetic or mind blowing and amazing. At this point, I had no tolerance for something that fell in between.

Having been alive to recall the original tune being played on the jukebox at a local restaurant, and currently residing in the host city of the Flying W Wranglers, I was on pins and needles as the video buffered. I couldn't have been more awestruck by what I witnessed unfold before my eyes, as one of the most polished and technically superb bluegrass groups crafted such an unlikely version of an 80s classic.

Adding to my impression was the revelation that the musician playing the upright bass is blind. Multi-talented, synchronous, creative, and unexpected? I am an instant fan.

—A.Hunt, SPCS Records

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

A Salute to American Ingenuity

Southparkcrawlspace Records has its roots in Alesis ADAT technology. Thanks to a sales associate at Sweetwater Sound, we quickly had a simple recording setup with a relatively easy learning curve. As ADAT technology continued to evolve, so did SPCS Records, embracing the shift to higher resolution audio and greater track count. Along the way, we developed a great affinity for the optical lightpipe interface, which greatly influenced our recent purchase of a heavily modified Behringer ADA8000.

Because of a tip received from our friend Brad Nyght, we researched a company from the Chicago metropolitan area known as Black Lion Audio. Customers love BLA and there is plenty of positive feedback online.

"[The ADA8000 Modification] results in a sound that is strikingly more open and textured, with far greater detail and micro-dynamics.  The common response we receive regarding this mod is that it has the sonic effect of taking a blanket off of the speakers!" 

"...we not only perform the op-amp upgrade, but we replace vital analog signal caps with capacitors of dramatically higher quality for both the inputs and outputs.  We also perform converter decoupling using the same techniques found in our Alesis AI-3 Premium upgrade, our acclaimed Signature Series modifications, and in our widely-praised FM192.  After this upgrade, the ADA8000 will have a much wider stereo field, a smoother & more defined bass, and sweeter-sounding highs."—blacklionaudio.com

After searching for a preamp that could transmit digital audio with zero signal loss and no added noise, the BLA blurb sounded amazing. We placed an ADA8000 on order through Gear Orphanage, and waited impatiently for its arrival. After putting the preamp through its paces with various microphones, both passive and active, we were completely blown away. So transparent! So quiet! Simply amazing, especially considering the price tag.

We immediately added this piece of gear to our list of must haves for any small to medium project studio. Moreover, we are placing the spotlight on the good folks at Black Lion Audio for their American Ingenuity and expertise in modifying decent gear to make it truly great.

Thank you, BLA, and keep up the good work!

—A.Hunt, SPCS Records