Please tell us about the recording process and technique that you used: We really tried not to get too serious in the studio, because we find the best things tend to happen when you are feeling loose enough to have some fun and let yourself go a little bit. We did, however, remain serious about two things: we really didn’t want to over-edit what was happening, because the idea was to get the sound of a real band in a room. Part of this included staying out of the isolation booths, so we could all vibe in the same room together. This definitely made for some bleed problems with the vocals, so, some things were fixed if they could be remedied, but some things you just live with as part of the recording. The other thing we were serious about was to keep the recording process in the analog format, from start to finish.
Why did you choose to go down this recording path? I always loved the warmer scruffier sound of the old live tapes my dad kept around of his old bands from the late 60’s, 70’s and 80’s. Most of my favourite recordings were done on tape, and whether they made their way to vinyl or not, there is this overall colour that the analog format adds that seems to get right into a place in my heart that is so closely tied to my memories and emotions. In short, to me, it seems to have more feel. After tracking to two inch tape, and mixing down to half inch, it only made sense to preserve it in it’s analog form and find a mastering engineer who could cut it straight to acetate discs without having to convert it to digital.
Who did you work with? There is a great young engineer at Revolution named Luke Schindler. Max and I had actually worked with Luke on another record as session musicians, for the very talented younger brother of Toronto musician/producer Nathan Ferraro. Nate is an old friend of mine, and as soon as I had a bit of money and time to put something together, he reached out to revolution for me to see if Luke would be into working with us. Max, our drummer, is also a weapon as a producer and handled a lot of the duties in our quest for analog imperfection. Luke, Max, and I were at the helm on the final mixes, and the tapes were sent off to an OG analog mastering engineer in New York named Carl Rowatti. Carl has mastered records for a staggering amount of artists from Bruce Springsteen to Mark Ronson, but I wanted to work with him because he had cut “Ain’t it a Sin” by Charles Bradley.
Please us your experience as being session musicians, how did you come to be session musicians? I can’t speak for the other guys, but as long as I can remember, I have been backing up as many different musicians and bands as I can, regardless of the genre or style. Looking back, it was definitely the most valuable part of my education. It taught me how to listen to the whole mix, not just what i was playing, and it’s where I made most of my closest friends. For years and years, I just waited for the phone to ring and one job always just led to another. When Colour Picture Book came into the scope, I could feel it was time to start focusing on something different, something that really spoke to my own personal vision. I had to learn to start saying no to people so I could say yes to what I was hearing and seeing in my head for all these years.