Which "sound" is "that" then?

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Re: Which one?

Postby Goran » Tue Sep 22, 2009 7:20 pm

Hi Kurt

Swedes stick together, don't we.......?
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Re: Which one?

Postby suboA21 » Wed Sep 23, 2009 8:42 am

Tone20002 wrote:Hi

"Sometimes when we gig or when I play for my own amusement, the sound is perfect, whilst at other times, even using the same gear it can sound 'different'."

Dave has touched on a phenomenon which has plagued me for ages. Can anyone explain why it should be that you can get a "spot on" sound one day but it can be quite different the next even in the same environment and using the same equipment on the same settings.

Could it be a change in ambient conditions which affect the sound frequencies, a change in our hearing which has been affected by what we had for dinner etc or something else as equally obscure?

I'd love to know the answer!


A couple of interesting points here.
Listen to the Mono and Stereo versions of " Me and My Shadows". Some tracks were recorded on different days even though they are of the same song. Apart from the fact that Mono and Stereo will have a different effect on our ears even Hanks tone is different, yet I bet he had exactly THE SAME SET UP AND SETTINGS on his kit. So ambient effects like air pressure, moisture and even voltage supply will have an effect. Brian May used to have his AC30 modded for American tours as the supply is only 110 volts and he said they sounded different when not on 240 volts!

2nd comment goes back to an earlier comment about the Studio.
I have said it before on the old MSN forum. Back in the 80's I had to do a Fire Safety Visit to Abbey Road just after the Beatles 21st Anniversary of the Abbey Road Album and we were told that Studio two hadn't been changed in any way apart from modern recording equipment since the 50's. The paint on the walls floor covering even the sea weed filled sound absorbent 'LiLo's' on the walls.

Yet Studio 3 had been re-furbished and modernised. Then no one wanted to use it as the atmosphere/ sound had changed!!!

Listen to stuff recorded at Hanks old Nivram Studios here in the UK and Brian's Honeyhill. Even though using the same Guitars , Amps, Echo etc, there is a subtle difference in the sound.

If Hank himself cannot recreate 'That sound' (whichever one that is) then all we can do is approximate it and, as long as the audience enjoy it then we have done our job and been ENTERTAINING...........



Re: Which one?

Postby Bojan » Wed Sep 23, 2009 8:55 am

Hi Goran nice to "see" you!! Hope you are well! :)

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Re: Which one?

Postby dave robinson » Wed Sep 23, 2009 9:00 am

There's a lot of interesting info there and it makes sense, which means we are on a hiding to nothing when trying to replicate the past.
One thing that I have noticed though, is that some of my Strats have a tendancy to make that 'barking' or 'quacking' sound more prominantly than others. Whether or not it's the pickups, string gauge, string height, body material or the perfect combination of all of those I'm not sure, but it is a real brain teaser. :?
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Re: Which one?

Postby cockroach » Wed Sep 23, 2009 11:43 am

Very true- also one's mood or state of mind, one's physical and mental health and hearing, and other factors influence what we hear.

Also, I've always noticed that on a gig, you can start off with a clean sound, but as the evening goes on, the sound seems to get more distorted -possibly as the amp heats up- I have noticed this over 44 years, so that includes using both valve and solid state amps.

In my first band, as a moody temperamental teenager (10% temper, 90% mental!) my band mates always dreaded me turning up to practice or gigs if I was in a bad mood- I could never get in tune, and my playing suffered...if you could notice!

As Brian Bennett said in the Mike Read book ,about Bruce's unfortunate obsession with being exactly in tune, it wouldn't have mattered much when the whole band was off and rocking!

Don't always blame the gear, it's the nut holding the wheel as they say!

Our bass player said to me at practice last week that my new(secondhand) amp sounded great- I had just stopped playing as the tune was over , and I asked the magic question...' so, how does it sound now?'...... ;)
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Re: Which "sound" is "that" then?

Postby roger bayliss » Wed Sep 23, 2009 7:10 pm

Have exactly the same problem when I play at home it sounds so good I am really happy with it then I got to our Hankies club and the sound is not as I expect it to be and it kinda puts me off playing a bit. I think it the reverb in the room and the reflected sound and the 'beam' from you amps speakers that is behind most of the reasoning. I also get more bass notes at the club that at home becasue you have turned the amp up higher than at home... working on it all the time but never really been a pro player so not had the experience that some have had in playing live..
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Re: Which one?

Postby Didier » Thu Sep 24, 2009 8:52 am

Goran wrote:Dave is quite right, the perceived sound from your gear changes quite radically depending on the venue, but, I think, even more so depending on the mood you yourself is in. I believe psychologi has a lot to do with it.

Hearing is highly subjective, and hearing memory is not reliable. The only way to make reliable comparisons is to do immediate blind tests.
We have done that once with a well known guitar sound processor, and the result was very interesting : most people thought it was used whent it wasn't ! I was among the few who were right, but it was probably by luck because there was no really noticeable difference...

And a well known fact is that when playing the first set of a gig you often think that the whole band's sound is a disaster (the audience does not seem to notice, though........) in spite of the thorough soundcheck you did (in an empty venue, of course). When performing the second set after having had a cup of coffee (or perhaps a very small beer...) everything sounds all right again.

Of course, a filled venue will not sound the same as an empty venue.

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Re: Which "sound" is "that" then?

Postby Martyn » Thu Sep 24, 2009 9:07 am

After a few glasses of wine I think I sound amazing . . . :P but the following morning . . . :cry:
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Re: Which "sound" is "that" then?

Postby asimmd » Mon Sep 28, 2009 2:46 pm

Interesting how peoples thoughts differ.

To me,Theme From Shane and Find Me A Golden Street are the epitomy
of the early Shadows Sound and when anyone mentions it,these immediately
come to mind.

Listen closely to Cosy,and pick out the distorted run up which was probably
caused by overloading something,wonderful.

Atlantis is special,not just because it is a lovely tune and can be played with emotion
but it's the choked over compressed sound of the guitar that give it the magic.

Burns or Strat,who cares, it's excellent.

There are many more,each with it's own place in the Shadows progression,let's face it,if
we could produce "That Sound" it wouldn't be special anymore,so I'm glad we can't do it.......yet?

Just my thoughts,others will differ but there's room for everyone.

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Re: Which "sound" is "that" then?

Postby Bojan » Mon Sep 28, 2009 6:22 pm

If I had to choose one song to represent "that sound," then for me it is definitely Kon Tiki!!!
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