After doing more recording last night – with Tricia Thom – I happened to listen to an online radio broadcast by producer Ronan Chris Murphy (who’s worked with King Crimson, Tool, Phillip Glass, John Lennon etc). He was saying that a problem with current recording techniques is that they discourage decision and commitment. In the old days of 8-track you didn’t keep five takes of the guitar solo because then you didn’t have a track for the lead vocal. Now you can keep everything as you go on, and think ‘I’ll sort them out later’. He says the more you do that, the less interesting the music. The alternative paradigm is more like looping – you practise, you do it once and that is ‘there’ – you then build on what’s there. I have more sympathy with this approach, especially as my project drags out. The luxury of home recording is balanced by the disadvantage of distraction and drowning in choices.
The radio programme is very good, by the way – a rare mix of singer/songwritery stuff and Crimson/metal/ambient. http://www.venetowest.com/radio/