Greeetings folks!! I hope to do some videos this week still, but in the meanwhile.. here’s some neews to whet your appetitite. =)
First, today I managed to complete my “first draft” of the Atlantis backstory I am working on for the new CD #TheAtlantisSuite. I am writing out an actual storyline that will follow with the music. It will be a multi-format work… story and music all in one. And of course, that is important BECAUSE the music will FOLLOW the story… not the other way around… I have the main story.. and the musical flow is beginning… so the ball has begin rolling down the hill. Stay tuned… =)
Also, I have found an amazing artist who will provide the artwork for the CD. This to me is more of a finishing touch.. but also an inspiration of sorts as I begin working on the album. In the wise words of the late Stephen Covey “Begin with the end in mind” this is a perfect example of that. I can visualize the final CD.. the CASE, the song titles, the story inside… now I just need to dig deep inside and make it happen.
My ultimate goal.. is to have a dynamic piece of music.. one that will tell a story, and invoke emotions in the listener. I also want an album that will stand the test of time as a great guitar record. I still listen to epic CD’s from yesteryear by Vai and that Sweedish Viking fellow… and it’s amazing how fresh their playing is.. EVEN TODAY. Those CD’s have stood the test of time.. and are STILL a lofty goal to shoot for. That’s what I am planning to do. I will listen to this CD in 10 years and smile… and hopefully so will you. =)
So be sure to follow here.. and for more FREQUENT updates on what I am upto.. be sure to follow me on Twitter @PeterJCruz. When I am in the studio working I usually tend to tweet HEAPS.. =)
Hey folks, well.. its’ been a long and fun road down to Tone Nirvana.. am I there yet?? I think that is the question any guitarist is always asking… Personally, I think I have found myself a panacea of great tone.. is it perfect? Of course not.. but I think overall the Tubemeister 18 is an incredible amp, at an incrediable price and will fit almost ANY need most guitarists out there would have.
I have finally completed the “demo” song I promised using the RED BOX only direct out for the guitar parts.. I have posted it to my Soundcloud at http://www.soundcloud.com/peterjcruz and also to my YouTube channel above!!
The guitars were ONLY recorded with the RED BOX out using the Tubemeister. I had the amp sitting on my desk in front of me plugged into my DAW using a HI Impedance mic cable while in SILENT MODE. I did not even have a cabinet attached to the Tubemeister. I could only hear it thru the headphone mix. I only ran a HIGH PASS FILTER to filter out some low end in the mix ( I did this to all channels except the bass drum). I think it fit the bill very nicely… definitely check it out.. WITH or WITHOUT the cabinet.. you have LOTS of options with the Tubemeister.. Here are a few closing thoughts on the amp:
- The “POWER SOAK” option gives you tons of flexibility with the amp. But remember, it dissipates extra “wattage” as heat.. and on SILENT mode with the MASTERS cranked.. the amp gets VERY HOT. So user BEWARE!!
- The Tubemeister IS a TUBE AMP.. and to get a rockin’ tone.. the sound gets sweeter as the MASTERS go UP.. same here!! Don’t be afraid to RAISE your MASTER VOLUME. Push those EL84s. If it’s TOO LOUD.. turn DOWN the POWER SOAK. Set it to 1 watt, or SILENT.. and keep the MASTERS UP.
- Along the same idea.. I noticed with the MASTERS up.. and as the amp got “hotter” I noticed the tons got sweeter and sweeter… so in the future I will probably setup the amp and leave it ON for a while before doing any recording.. Let the heat build up a tad to get some extra “juice” in the sound. The TONE DEFINITELY sounded and felt different from when I hit the Standby switch to much later on…
- The RED BOX OUT is LINE LEVEL. Don’t let the XLR output jack make you think it’s a MIC LEVEL signal. Also, do NOT turn on PHANTOM POWER. It probably wouldn’t be a good thing.
- While H&K sells a footswitch to swap channels and engage the boost on and off, most two button footswitches will do the job. And for a bit less coin too. #justsaying =)
- The LEAD CHANNEL takes boost/distortion pedals very well. I actually found some great lead sounds with a Boss DS1 with the distortion set to 0, and the Level and Tone adjusted to taste.. it TIGHTENED up the amp.. and gave me a VERY percussive lead sound.. especially for palm mutes. Be sure to use a Noise Gate though…
- The amp itself is pretty loud.. especially for an 18 watt amp.. and you can lower it with the POWER SOAK on the BACK. Use that to your advantage!!
- I am planning to use the Tubemeister on my upcoming CD “The Atlantis Suite” and it will get a work out for sure. Cleans, dirtys, uber heavy you name it.. it will be pushed to the limits. Stay tuned for news on the CD.
That’s all I have for now.. stay tuned for some more ramblings.. and stuff from me. =)
Or whatever, I’m going to call the song.. I have NO IDEA!! LOL!! Seriously, I will write a QUICK song… probably like a minute or less in length.. Maybe just a riff, with drums and bass.. and a quick “lead” over the top. I will record all the guitars with the Tubemeister 18 using the built in RED BOX. No cabinets or mic’s will be used. In fact.. I plan to have the Tubemeister SITTING on the desk IN FRONT OF me as I track the song into SONAR X2. I will MOST likely have some video or some pics of as I do this.. just for fun. =)
To flesh out the “song” I will use a (cheap) Yamaha bass into modeling software (Amplitube 3.9, going to use the SVT model), I will use Steven Slate Drums 4 EX for the drums, and Slate Digital’s “Virtual Console Collection”, and all of this into Sonar X2. The guitars will be my Carvin ST300C and V220C.. both tracking THRU the Tubemeister 18 DIRECT using the Red Box. Only some EQ and compression (and not much) in the mix will be used.
Thanks all. Stay tuned..
Sorry for the delay folks.. it’s been a BEAR to get the time to shoot the video.. and then ONCE I had done it.. trying to marry the audio from my workstation (which had the SM57 signal recorded into SONAR X2), and the video from the camera. I had to do a TON of edits to “remove” the camera audio so you could hear the SM57 alone… I’m still a n00b at this video stuff. =)
All things considered.. the BIGGEST HURDLE I did have was… CAMERA “audio” is recorded at 48k.. SO if you want to “sync” external audio with the video.. it’s a GREAT IDEA to use 48k also.. LOL!!! Once I had that figured out.. the sync’ing was MUCH easier…
Anyways, enjoy!! The playing is messy.. and my mic’ing technique not the best.. but it should give you some good overview of what this tube beast is capable of.
I am still working on getting the final playtest video together on my Tubemeister review…. so rather than keep you all waiting…. I shot a fun video this am to share my early thoughts on the CD release today from Stone Sour.Watch “Stoked for Stone Sour. Album drops Today!!” on YouTube
Greetings and all that good stuff. I uploaded a video overview of the Hughes and Kettner Tubemeister18 head.
I will be sending up a playthrough and possibly some other “bonus” material in the near future so stay tuned!! Rock on!!! Peter