AUS220 Week 4: Intensive One, Done
This week, out of all so far, has definitely been the silliest. So much to do, so much to see, so much to break. I honestly don't know where to start. I have learnt a lot of lessons this week, and have started to realise just how truly 'in the deep-end' I am with all of this. But somehow, it is with a smile I look back at week four. The most negative aspect of the week, was the loss of my computer, AKA my universe. Due to my incredibly full schedule, I have been out of the house for close to 15 hours everyday, which means I have to be prepared for all sorts of events and tasks, which means my liquid lunch and computer share the same bag. This ended in disaster on Wednesday when my top of the line MacBook Pro met my entire chocolate-milk protein shake. My beloved computer is in binary heaven now, and it could not be a worse time, both finically and in terms of workload, but I am an adaptable person, and I will survive this most tragic of times. That's the bad news, now for the good!
The fourth week was one of beginnings and endings. I started some freelance producer/engineer projects I have picked up, I ended my post-production intensive project, I had the first meeting for the Special Projects group I have been assigned to, and I saw my first gigs in the sound stage at SAE. In fact, I saw a lot of gigs this week, taking on Captain Dalton's words of wisdom regarding 'lovers of music' who do not see any live shows. On Wednesday, after an eight hour recording session tracking guitars in the large Audient, and attending the first of the two live production intensive gigs (more on this in a moment), I headed to The Corner Hotel to see a new young artist from Norway called Sigrid. She has not had a lot, if any, radio exposure here in Australia, compared to the extensive exposure in Europe and the UK. Nevertheless, she sold out her Melbourne and Brisbane shows in no time, and most of the audience knew all of her material and lyrics. Needless to say, she will be huge here once the cat is out of the bag. Sigrid's very familiar, but extremely well executed Scandinavian electro-pop sound is addictive and fun, and her voice is something else altogether. Unbelievable range, grit, sweetness, soul. To top it off, she has the cutest, girl-next-door attitude, bouncing around the stage with her long pony tail flicking back and forth. This was a fun show, but all the fun and joy didn't hide the precision executed by Sigrid and her crew. Seriously good musicians, seriously good songs. I was there both as a fan, but also, as always, as an industry professional on a reconnaissance mission, and I was blown away. If I ever need to organise a perfectly orchestrated electro-pop party, I know exactly where I'll get my inspiration from.
The other notable gigs I saw this week were Wednesday and Thursday nights in the sound stage at SAE, where my fellow classmates completed their live sound intensive by putting on a live show. I was really proud of both groups. I thought they executed the evenings really well, chose great acts, created a cool, comfortable environment, and of course, supplied free beers. Both nights, and all the acts were great. But as always, although I was there to see some live music and support my mates, it was also a good opportunity to do some more reconnaissance, knowing full well that my group is up next to complete the same task. It was great to see what the others decided to do, and to see the nights unfold. I was able to get a taste for what I thought worked and maybe could've worked better, to become familiar with the space, and to start to plan out with my group what we might like to do when it is our turn. We have had a few rough discussions, but I'm really looking forward to sinking our teeth into it next week. Live sound is such a huge part of my life and career. I deal with it on a weekly basis in all sorts of situations, so I'm really looking forward to getting to work with Teebo, who has more than enough wisdom and experience on the subject to share. I can't wait! It is long overdue for me.
But for all the spender these shows bought me, it was the ending of another intensive that really had an impact on me. After many hours under the watch of Tristan, and many, many hours of time out side of class, my group and I finally pressed FINISH on our post-production project. It was a lot of work, and we definitely bit off more than we should've been able to chew, but we learnt a lot about the process and each other, and got, as I suspected, a fantastic result. Our version has it's own identity and energy, but certainly stands up to the original. I am very proud of what we achieved. It wasn't easy, but it was worth it. We had to employ all of the skills and techniques I've mentioned in previous posts, and a lot of it we did blindly, by trial and error, and by thinking out side of the box. Tristan expressed his approval to us, and that meant a lot coming from him. He was aware of how hard we worked, and how much we wanted it to come up good. I also feel like I made some good tracks with my ability to work in a group, even though my group is incredibly talented and easy to get on with, I just felt a shift in myself and my own place within the group. It was a good thing, because I have often struggled internally in the past with this, so it was nice to feel an improvement. As for whether or not I want to pursue a career in post production or not, the answer is most definitely a yes, but that doesn't mean I'm sure I only want to do that. I'm actually feeling a lot of stress about narrowing down on one area of the discipline. I love music production, I love post, I love management, I love engineering. I'm having trouble deciding where to direct my attention most. I'm probably too old for questions like that to bother me, but I guess I've always had a jack-all-trades mindset, and now that I feel I should knuckle down on one, I'm nervous about which to dedicate my time to. I guess I don't trust my own decision making, and I'm worried I'll stuff it all up to be honest. Something I will have to work on.
Anyway, all that aside, here it is! The group six sound design version of Powered Toastman.
And for comparison, here's the original again.
So, a tiring and trying week for sure, but that's the game, and I'm playing it. I am going to take on everything I have learnt this week, and make sure that I implement all of the new information going forward. So, a big thank you to Tristan for his guidance and caring, a big well done to the live sound guys for their efforts, and a big, massive, sloppy, work-appropriate kiss for my team mates for their support, talent, and hard work. One down, two to go!