BOC: A "dizzying excursion into Pearlman's world"

Jon Jarrett jjarrett at CHIARK.GREENEND.ORG.UK
Wed Oct 13 09:45:08 EDT 2004

On Thu, 16 Sep 2004, Stephen Swann wrote:

> On Wed, Sep 15, 2004 at 08:53:13PM -0400, Albert Bouchard wrote:
> > I was just thinking today about those times and thinking about my
> > thought process which was, I don't want to be a one hit band. I knew we
> > had the goods again but the lack of ambition from the rest of the guys
> > was worrying me (and Martin Birch). They couldn't understand why I was
> > getting so crazy about every little thing and I think some of them were
> > thinking I was making a power grab but honestly I was worried that we'd
> > mess it up.
> It's funny, I remember you once saying that you felt that
> Martin Birch was the producer who had "done the least" for
> BOC's sound.  Oddly, in some ways that's what I liked best
> about his mixes, is that they sound really "transparent".  I
> always got the impression, when listening to a Martin Birch
> produced album (and he produced quite a surprising number of
> my favorite hard rock and metal albums) that I was listening
> to the band, and not the producer (if that makes any sense). :-)
> My only real gripe with the albums he mixed (which I didn't
> even discover until pretty recently) was the huge amount of
> compression he used (or was that BOC's choice?).  And I
> imagine that probably seemed like a very sensible choice in
> the context of the time...

        It seems worth tacking a quote onto this, if only because it
varies so sharply from those two opinions on Birch:

        "Martin was a great engineer... I think eventully you ended up
with Martin's sound rather than your own, but initially it was such a
good sound you didn't mind." Which is Ian Paice, quoted from the liner of
the 25th Anniversary edition of _In Rock_. I suppose the difference that
he's talking about Birch as engineer, not as producer, but all the same I
thought it was odd, especially as I agree with Steve as a listener; stuff
with which Birch was involved that I've heard still sounds clean and
authentic today, as if not much had got in the way of the bands' sounds
except for audiophilia. Odd. Anyway... Yours,

ObCD: Hawkwind - _In Search of Space_
                Jonathan Jarrett, Birkbeck College, London
    jjarrett at at
  "As much as the vision of the blind man improves with the rising sun,
       So too does the intelligence of the fool after good advice."
       (Bishop Theodulf of Orleans, late-eight/early-ninth century)

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