Kevin Shirley's Studio Diary #6

dogigniter

Ancient Mariner
Hi there, Maiden fans. An update so soon - well, let me tell you, it may have been a short week, but it has been extraordinarily productive!

Got in early Monday morning from Italy and sailed right into Paddington on the Heathrow Express and was hard at work by 10am. 'Arry came in about noon - and then the rest of the week is a blur.

Wing Commander Biggles came in a couple of times - to sing a couple of songs, to work on some lyrics and melodies - Steve writes the melodies and Bruce writes lyrics to fit the meter. Steve whistles the tune and Bruce scratches his head and concentrates, searching pages and pages of ideas and lyrics he's got prepared. By the way, when Bruce does a vocal, it's entirely physical! I don't have a great view of him, because that would be weird just staring at him singing, but I can see him enough to see that he moves like he's on stage - with a fixed microphone tho, of course. His arms windmill around, and when he gets back into the control room, he's covered in sweat! He says he gives his abdominals a serious workout each time, and the vocals on this album are bitching!!!! Actually, the whole thing is - no kidding!!! The drums are gigantic - 'Arry's bass goes up your ass, it's so biting and heavy, and all Three Amigos have pulled out serious melodic solos, and I love the songs!

Anyway, Biggles has only ONE song left to sing - and I have already got final mixes of SEVEN - yes, you read that correctly - seven songs are in the can, from an album of ten. We have been working chronologically the whole time - and the order we've recorded the songs - and mixed them, is the running order for the album. Bizarre, yet utterly true and seriously satisfying! I haven't been this excited since Silverchair's Frogstomp........ well, then I did enjoy the Led Zeppelin DVD and live albums ..... and then I loved producing the Black Crowes and earlier Maiden albums too .... and I had a kickass time getting Joe Bonamassa's new album done (by the way, if you're a fan of the blues at all - of Jeff Beck, Peter Green, etc - check out Joe's album. It's called You And Me and we did a cracking cover version of a Led Zeppelin blues track - Tea For One) .... but still, I am very excited! [img src=\"style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/biggrin.gif\" style=\"vertical-align:middle\" emoid=\":D\" border=\"0\" alt=\"biggrin.gif\" /]

Jan came in - did some gorgeous harmonics on the quiet section of the track we call "Billy Bunter", well, that's it's working title! He added some melodic lines to a sing-along bit and Adrian came in and had some nice lunches - and put down a terrific acoustic guitar track over one of Bruce's songs, Song #6, which could conceivably get a few spins on the radio even!! Steve put down some tasteful synths and sang ONE backing vocal; and really did a sterling job on the keyboards, ably assisted by long time Maiden stalwart, Michael Kenney - the live keyboard player, bass and guitar tech, and general all-round whiz-kid! I'm normally pretty feisty about the keyboards, as I don't love them -but these have really enhanced the few sections where they've been played! Actually, there hasn't been a fight on this entire session! Amazing! Adrian did burst a blood vessel and yell at Jan for having a giggle with me while he was trying to listen to one of his solos on a B-side track, but we put that down to the time of the month - and then 'Arry and I had that little "rockabilly" exchange back when - but it's been a seriously fantastic session! And you'll get to hear all of that!

So, that's where we're at. We've moved our mastering date forward, because as we'll finish well ahead of schedule, we can get some other things done - I'm gonna produce a quickie 10 day album in Las Vegas with indie-rockers Supagroup, I'll also fit in some surround sound mixes for future live releases, and I've got a couple of things to do for a little Jimmy Page thing that's going on in the background. You might wonder what all these rock stars do, when not dancing and prancing around the stage, but succesful people work very hard - and all the time too! It's exhausting!

So, I hope you've enjoyed this little peek into our week that's just flown by. All the boys are home today and I'm working in the studio on my own - making sure the rock/metal is just the way you like it! It doesn't sound like anyone else, and we like that! We don't listen to any current stuff and compare it in the studio - we like to make the music sound like music we want to hear. And I know you'll love it!

My son Josh's 18th birthday is 06.06.06.

Could I be parent of the Beast? I'd better check under his hair...........


Kevin Shirley
Caveman Productions Inc.
www.cavemanproductions.com

Source: http://www.ironmaidenonlineclub.com/showthread.php?t=3078
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
[!--quoteo(post=135548:date=Apr 24 2006, 02:36 PM:name=dogigniter)--][div class=\'quotetop\']QUOTE(dogigniter @ Apr 24 2006, 02:36 PM) [snapback]135548[/snapback][/div][div class=\'quotemain\'][!--quotec--]Anyway, Biggles has only ONE song left to sing - and I have already got final mixes of SEVEN - yes, you read that correctly - seven songs are in the can, from an album of ten. We have been working chronologically the whole time - and the order we've recorded the songs - and mixed them, is the running order for the album. [/quote]Chronological? It sounds like the rumors of a concept album could be true ::
[!--quoteo(post=135548:date=Apr 24 2006, 02:36 PM:name=dogigniter)--][div class=\'quotetop\']QUOTE(dogigniter @ Apr 24 2006, 02:36 PM) [snapback]135548[/snapback][/div][div class=\'quotemain\'][!--quotec--]Jan came in - did some gorgeous harmonics ...Steve put down some tasteful synths and sang ONE backing vocal[/quote]No word of Adrian doing backing vocals?
[!--quoteo(post=135548:date=Apr 24 2006, 02:36 PM:name=dogigniter)--][div class=\'quotetop\']QUOTE(dogigniter @ Apr 24 2006, 02:36 PM) [snapback]135548[/snapback][/div][div class=\'quotemain\'][!--quotec--]My son Josh's 18th birthday is 06.06.06.

Could I be parent of the Beast? I'd better check under his hair...........[/quote]A nice little reference to the Omen, a sign of a sequal to NotB? ::
Speculation is great [img src=\"style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/wink.gif\" style=\"vertical-align:middle\" emoid=\";)\" border=\"0\" alt=\"wink.gif\" /]
 

Hunlord

Trooper
The thing that I find about these studio diarys is that about half of it is spent explaining how cool Kevin is, going out and gettin drunk with the lads, going to Italy and his other projects. Am I the only one that feels like this?
 

Hunlord

Trooper
[!--quoteo(post=135554:date=Apr 24 2006, 05:50 PM:name=DeadlySinner)--][div class=\'quotetop\']QUOTE(DeadlySinner @ Apr 24 2006, 05:50 PM) [snapback]135554[/snapback][/div][div class=\'quotemain\'][!--quotec--]
After all, it is his diary..
[/quote]
I know it is his diary and I don't want to appear idiotic, but it is a studio diary, if anyone wanted to read his personal diary they could go on to his own site. Saying that, I do like to read the diarys and see how the band are getting on in the studio, I just think that he is very conscious of how people reading it see him and feels he has to put foreward an image of himself being cool and "hip" with his young recording assistants.
 

Raven

Ancient Mariner
[!--quoteo(post=135552:date=Apr 24 2006, 05:12 PM:name=Conor)--][div class=\'quotetop\']QUOTE(Conor @ Apr 24 2006, 05:12 PM) [snapback]135552[/snapback][/div][div class=\'quotemain\'][!--quotec--]
Chronological? It sounds like the rumors of a concept album could be true ::

No word of Adrian doing backing vocals?
[/quote]

Maybe, or maybe they just want to record the album methodically. But this could either take away from the natural process of writing, or create an insane proggy album, if the band added ideas to songs as they thought up of them. [img src=\"style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/biggrin.gif\" style=\"vertical-align:middle\" emoid=\":D\" border=\"0\" alt=\"biggrin.gif\" /]. So I would favour the guess of a concept album.

Adrian is already doing backing vocals, as has been stated in past studio entries. Presumably he just didn't record any this week, after all he hasn't finished his guitar bits yet (we all know what a perfectionist H is!)

New album's looking like it could be very good, if it lives up to the hype. Well, it's not really hype, is it, just one update a week or so... :: . Not as bad as some of the so-called 'metal' bands, with their obscene photo shoots and crap interviews (*cough*AvengedSevenfold*cough*). Actually, I'm hoping this album comes out with the minimum amount of fuss; I want to be able to get one of the first copies and proudly walk out of the store with my head held high at being an ardent Maidenfan, while all these mallcore kids listen to what happens to be in the media spotlight at the minute. [/controversial rant]

As I said on the comment section, Roll on Autumn 2006!
 

canadaman

Invader
The pace at which their putting the album together has me a bit worried. I'd like for them to take the time to do it right. Then again, I have no idea what's going on inside the studio, or what the songs sound like.

What's the deal with "Billy Bunter" anyway? This is what I found on wikipedia Link.
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
[!--quoteo--][div class=\'quotetop\']QUOTE[/div][div class=\'quotemain\'][!--quotec--]Adrian did burst a blood vessel and yell at Jan for having a giggle [/quote]
Lord H is mortal after all! [img src=\"style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/ohmy.gif\" style=\"vertical-align:middle\" emoid=\":eek:\" border=\"0\" alt=\"ohmy.gif\" /]
 

Hunlord

Trooper
[!--quoteo(post=135572:date=Apr 24 2006, 09:05 PM:name=Ascendancy)--][div class=\'quotetop\']QUOTE(Ascendancy @ Apr 24 2006, 09:05 PM) [snapback]135572[/snapback][/div][div class=\'quotemain\'][!--quotec--]
Lord H is mortal after all! [img src=\"style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/ohmy.gif\" style=\"vertical-align:middle\" emoid=\":eek:\" border=\"0\" alt=\"ohmy.gif\" /]
[/quote]
No, you misunderstood. H burst Jan's blood vessel for having a giggle.
 

Albie

Keeping an open eye on the Weeping Angels.
[!--quoteo(post=135560:date=Apr 24 2006, 07:50 PM:name=canadaman)--][div class=\'quotetop\']QUOTE(canadaman @ Apr 24 2006, 07:50 PM) [snapback]135560[/snapback][/div][div class=\'quotemain\'][!--quotec--]
What's the deal with "Billy Bunter" anyway? This is what I found on wikipedia Link.
[/quote]
Billy Bunter could mean anything. The chocolate and custard pie eating fat schoolboy you linked to, the cockney rhyming slang for "punter" or just simply a working title. Could mean anything and nothing.
 

dogigniter

Ancient Mariner
[!--quoteo(post=135631:date=Apr 26 2006, 08:57 AM:name=prn)--][div class=\'quotetop\']QUOTE(prn @ Apr 26 2006, 08:57 AM) [snapback]135631[/snapback][/div][div class=\'quotemain\'][!--quotec--]
drop the synths!

that is all I have to say...
.prn
[/quote]

Whats wrong with synth? ::
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
[!--quoteo(post=135632:date=Apr 26 2006, 10:06 AM:name=dogigniter)--][div class=\'quotetop\']QUOTE(dogigniter @ Apr 26 2006, 10:06 AM) [snapback]135632[/snapback][/div][div class=\'quotemain\'][!--quotec--]
Whats wrong with synth? ::
[/quote]



Lets face it... the synths used after Seventh Son are just adding a additional layer of fat to the songs, which in my opinion are quite uneeded. Just listen to some of the more recent songs, there are to many things happening at every moment. I like synths, but not when they are overused. Nomad... Dance of death... Line in the sands... hey! they even made "rock mix" of some of the songs.
 

Black Ace

Trooper
Okay, I wasn't around to read the diaries for the recording of the other albums, so I ask you guys: Was Kevin so hyped about DoD too?
 

eddiesson

Invader
Re: Kevin Shirley's Studio Diary #6

prn said:
Nomad... Dance of death... Line in the sands... hey! they even made "rock mix" of some of the songs.

because their original versions were MUCH better. rock mixes were only present as a B-Side. without keyboards, these songs couldn't be what they are, and they are more beautiful this way. But that's just me. And for me, best songs of BNW are Nomad and Blood Brothers.


canadaman said:
The pace at which their putting the album together has me a bit worried. I'd like for them to take the time to do it right. Then again, I have no idea what's going on inside the studio, or what the songs sound like.

After working together more than 25 years, having played nonstop and having written 2 albums within the last 7 years, maybe they are more at ease when recording an album. I think that because of their experience and proficency, they are so fast. But me too, I hope that they are looking for something original instead of usual formulas.


Black Ace said:
Okay, I wasn't around to read the diaries for the recording of the other albums, so I ask you guys: Was Kevin so hyped about DoD too?

oh yes... Passchandale was a hit before it was even released! I think it was a big mistake, because, people were so excited that they appreciated iteven before they listened to it, and their opinions were all biased. People were like "ohhh... it's the best album they released!" but after a few weeks or months, the majority changed their ideas and placed DoD in MUCH lower ranks in their favourite IM album list. I am only interested either in their daily lives, their jokes, or in objective things he says about the songs/album, like if a song is 7/8 that's interesting, if a song is written by Bruce, it's an information. but if it is "the best epic they have ever written and it almost feels orgasmic" according to Kevin Shirley, I smile and forget about it immediately. because it's usually wrong (as It was in the case of Passchandale).

By the way where's nicko? no mention of him during last 3 studio diaries. did he finish everything on his part?
 

LooseCannon

Enterprise-class aircraft carrier
Staff member
Re: Kevin Shirley's Studio Diary #6

Except that Paschendale is probably the best epic they've ever written.  I'd rank Dance of Death as my third or fourth favourite album, personally, and I haven't really changed my opinion that much of it.  But then again, I didn't read many of the diaries...
 

Shadow

Deluxe Edition
Staff member
Re: Kevin Shirley's Studio Diary #6

I don't remember reading any of them but Dance of Death still sank like a stone on my album list. I'd currently place it third to last - only just above Fear of the Dark and Virtual XI - and that's quite a drop for an album I used to rank fourth or fifth! I don't know why it palled so much, but I guess when the initial excitement about the release wore off I listened to it more critically and the flaws sprung up.

Paschendale is still pretty good though.
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Re: Kevin Shirley's Studio Diary #6

eddiesson said:
By the way where's nicko? no mention of him during last 3 studio diaries. did he finish everything on his part?
He's probably giiven up because of all the 7/8 time signatures :p
 

eddiesson

Invader
Re: Kevin Shirley's Studio Diary #6

in my case, I didn't follow studio diaries. I followed the reactions of people on IM official board. people were raving about it.

anyway, in my list, only Virtual XI is worse then DoD. I liked and still like only two or three songs of it. DoD, montsegur. third... I forgot, could be rainmaker. hey, they are so not memorable! I don't know why, but nothing excited me in DoD. And FYI, BNW is in my top 3. it's not like "I dislike everything they did since NPFTD".

As for passchandale, to call it their best epic is a bit disgrace to songs like Phantom Of The Opera, Hallowed Be Thy Name, Rime Of The Ancient Mariner, SSOASS, Sign Of The Cross, Nomad... I'd put it in "lesser epics" category like Afraid, Blood Brothers, Revelations, Duellists, and will still struggle to call it "best of its category". like in Clansman, I can hear nothing spectacular or original in Passchandale (except the production) to make it better than their more complex and impressive epics. It's my opinion at least.
 
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