What’s the most Lo-Fi recording you ever put on vinyl?

Get that song on tape! Errr... disk?
User avatar
Underdog Diva
PAT PEND
PAT PEND
Posts: 11
Joined: Thu Oct 24, 2019 4:08 am

What’s the most Lo-Fi recording you ever put on vinyl?

Post by Underdog Diva » Tue Jan 21, 2020 9:49 am

I admit it: I’m a cheapskate.
And I don’t have the money, endurance or will power to make a semi professional recording.
So I’m looking for an excuse to put a Lo-Fi recording on vinyl.
Tell me about your experiences. The equipment you used and your motivation.
Did I say I play in a garage punk band?

User avatar
DeathJag
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 545
Joined: Wed Aug 08, 2018 11:44 am

Re: What’s the most Lo-Fi recording you ever put on vinyl?

Post by DeathJag » Tue Jan 21, 2020 10:04 am

You are TOTALLY speaking my language! Personally I've got a bunch of 4-track cassettes that are lo-fi but not on purpose haha!

Off the top of my head my favorites are Brentwoods, Vulcaneers, Traditional Fools, Trashwomen, Mummies, (only old) Donnas, Rip Offs, and of course they who set the standard: Supercharger! Guitar Wolf gets a mention but I don’t love their songs nearly as much as their sound.

I don’t know how they did it, but it sounds like one or two super cheap mics placed very carefully. And then the band must play crazy loud. Radio Shack mics come to mind, and definitely a tape recorder, nothing digital. I’d say use a cassette recorder with two mono mics and mess with placement until the mix is good.

Check out the Mummies on SF Public Access in ‘91, they sound exactly the same!

https://youtu.be/bFnl2US5UIQ
Last edited by DeathJag on Tue Jan 21, 2020 10:06 am, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
parry
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 8231
Joined: Sat Apr 05, 2008 10:08 am
Location: Ontario, CANADA
Contact:

Re: What’s the most Lo-Fi recording you ever put on vinyl?

Post by parry » Tue Jan 21, 2020 10:05 am

I'm sure this isn't the correct answer, but If the songs are good, you're proud of them and that's the aesthetic - stand by it. Do it.
But if the songs are good and get missed due to being pigeon-holed as lo-fi; and you're going to regret it later... don't do it. Do it right.
Fighting for peace is like fucking for virginity.

User avatar
mgeek
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 1250
Joined: Mon Mar 17, 2014 1:03 pm

Re: What’s the most Lo-Fi recording you ever put on vinyl?

Post by mgeek » Wed Jan 22, 2020 8:27 am

Lo Fi stuff can be cool, but you need to hit a sweet point on the sliding scale of 'abbey road' to 'recorded on your phone in the toilet with the band in another room' or it'll just end up sounding wimpy

I've pressed up four track stuff, but tbh it didn't really sound much different to what I do on pro tools. I don't close mic the entire kit, i use room mics to capture everything going on instrumentally and blend that in there, but also make sure there's enough kick and snare to sound powerful, distort stuff, mad tape delays flying off all over the place,

What gear are you planning on using?

User avatar
marqueemoon
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 3742
Joined: Mon Jun 20, 2016 9:37 pm
Location: Seattle

Re: What’s the most Lo-Fi recording you ever put on vinyl?

Post by marqueemoon » Wed Jan 22, 2020 10:00 am

Not vinyl, but I once released a cell phone recording of acoustic guitar and vocals that I pulled into Garageband and added some soft synths to.

I still sometimes use my cassette 4 track.

While I don’t always love the sound I like the workflow of quick and dirty recordings.

User avatar
mbene085
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 5312
Joined: Tue May 24, 2016 5:07 am

Re: What’s the most Lo-Fi recording you ever put on vinyl?

Post by mbene085 » Wed Jan 22, 2020 10:11 am

This isn't lo-fi in the traditional sense, but back in the day, I recorded an entire album of guitar and bass instrumentals using only a Digitech Genesis 1.

Image

It was a vile thing from 2001 and while digital gear is not usually considered lo-fi, I can assure you the sound from this thing was so low quality that it easily fit the bill ;)

User avatar
higgsblossom
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 969
Joined: Thu Jan 09, 2014 2:55 am
Location: Mannheim, Germany

Re: What’s the most Lo-Fi recording you ever put on vinyl?

Post by higgsblossom » Wed Jan 22, 2020 10:12 am

A Sony stereo mic was used for a live album I recorded for the metal band „Slartibartfass“. Recorded on a tape recorder, transferred to digital, a bit of EQing and editing and sold on cassette at their merch stand.

I still like to record concerts that way, only my equipment is better now...

I would suggest that you read a bit about how Cowboy Junkies recorded the Trinity Sessions, because that’s a pretty good album recorded with just one microphone. Even if it’s a different genre, to me it’s the masterpiece showing how HiFi a LoFi approach can actually sound! It’s all about placing the amps, and you will need a good PA for all vocals. Also be careful about what is called a „Bassfalle“ in German - bass trap? - so don‘t place the microphones too close to any wall or corner.
"500€? That's the price of a J Mascis Jazzmaster!"

User avatar
Underdog Diva
PAT PEND
PAT PEND
Posts: 11
Joined: Thu Oct 24, 2019 4:08 am

Re: What’s the most Lo-Fi recording you ever put on vinyl?

Post by Underdog Diva » Wed Jan 22, 2020 11:31 am

Thanks for all the motivational replies!
Actually it’s not to sound Lo-Fi in the first place.
It’s about a quick and dirty approach that doesn’t steal nerves and time of arranging microphones.
The gear I want to use goes from iPhone with external mic (sure mv 88) to tascam 4 track to Fisher Price Kiddie recorder.
We did some really cool recordings lately using a more contemporary approach with help from a friend who lives off recording and music in general.
Still I like the rehearsal recordings more because they have that unfiltered edge. What they are missing though is the bass and the punch that makes listening easy. I should note that we are a two-piece a la white stripes.
What about the mastering of those cheap recordings? How much effort did you put in that?

User avatar
mgeek
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 1250
Joined: Mon Mar 17, 2014 1:03 pm

Re: What’s the most Lo-Fi recording you ever put on vinyl?

Post by mgeek » Wed Jan 22, 2020 11:55 am

guitar and drums? vocals?

Mastering is still very important even if it's a lofi thing. Early on I skipped it on a pro recorded release that sounded great, and ... never again cos the resulting singles sound muddy. :whistle:

Personally I'd skip the fisher price recorder. You can get plenty of vibe with the four track, bouncing to one of those will just reduce the impact/low end.

I'd go track 1 kick, track 2 snare, track 3 guitar(?) and 4 vocals? Record the whole lot well into the red, don't worry about bleed, should be pretty easy to get a mashed up Sonicsy sound. Might be worth borrowing some more mics, or just buying some 'whatever, cheap' ones.

When miking things up, generally if the mic is close you'll get bottom end, farther away you get the delicious vibey mush- so as long as you've got a kick mic reasonably close to the mic, that'll take care of the low stuff. Took me YEARS to figure that one out ;)

User avatar
Underdog Diva
PAT PEND
PAT PEND
Posts: 11
Joined: Thu Oct 24, 2019 4:08 am

Re: What’s the most Lo-Fi recording you ever put on vinyl?

Post by Underdog Diva » Wed Jan 22, 2020 12:57 pm

Sounds pretty good to me!
Personally, I’d like to avoid the bouncing. Although for some songs a keyboard comes into play that I usually play with my foot. That would require one more track.

User avatar
marqueemoon
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 3742
Joined: Mon Jun 20, 2016 9:37 pm
Location: Seattle

Re: What’s the most Lo-Fi recording you ever put on vinyl?

Post by marqueemoon » Wed Jan 22, 2020 3:52 pm

Last time I did 4 track we cut the drums and guitar live in stereo on 1/2, bass overdubbed on 3, vocals on 4, then dumped to digital for mixing.

Sadly the takes/arrangement were not quite up to snuff, but most of the sounds were great. There’s something magical about drums on tape even if shitty tape.

User avatar
Underdog Diva
PAT PEND
PAT PEND
Posts: 11
Joined: Thu Oct 24, 2019 4:08 am

Re: What’s the most Lo-Fi recording you ever put on vinyl?

Post by Underdog Diva » Wed Jan 22, 2020 10:47 pm

marqueemoon wrote:
Wed Jan 22, 2020 3:52 pm
Last time I did 4 track we cut the drums and guitar live in stereo on 1/2, bass overdubbed on 3, vocals on 4, then dumped to digital for mixing.

How did you manage the panning? If I get it right, you used 2 mics (stereo?) for guitar and drums. Where would you put the mics to not have a guitar on one side and drums on the other?
I learned that mic placement is crucial.

User avatar
marqueemoon
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 3742
Joined: Mon Jun 20, 2016 9:37 pm
Location: Seattle

Re: What’s the most Lo-Fi recording you ever put on vinyl?

Post by marqueemoon » Thu Jan 23, 2020 6:34 am

Underdog Diva wrote:
Wed Jan 22, 2020 10:47 pm
marqueemoon wrote:
Wed Jan 22, 2020 3:52 pm
Last time I did 4 track we cut the drums and guitar live in stereo on 1/2, bass overdubbed on 3, vocals on 4, then dumped to digital for mixing.

How did you manage the panning? If I get it right, you used 2 mics (stereo?) for guitar and drums. Where would you put the mics to not have a guitar on one side and drums on the other?
I learned that mic placement is crucial.
We used a little Mackie 1202 mixer and sent a stereo mix of the drums and guitar to tracks 1 and 2 from that. The guitar was tracked with a little pedal reverb. Just enough that it wasn’t overly dry compared to the drums.

My band is only 1 guitar, but if you have two or more you can pan them a little.

User avatar
mijmog
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 1015
Joined: Tue Sep 09, 2008 7:03 am
Location: Lancashire

Re: What’s the most Lo-Fi recording you ever put on vinyl?

Post by mijmog » Thu Jan 23, 2020 8:17 am

An 10" EP recorded on one cheapo Samson condensor mic in the middle of a rehearsal room, into a Boss digital multitrack.

Terrible, but just did some spooky overdubs and it was fine ;D :fp:

User avatar
higgsblossom
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 969
Joined: Thu Jan 09, 2014 2:55 am
Location: Mannheim, Germany

Re: What’s the most Lo-Fi recording you ever put on vinyl?

Post by higgsblossom » Thu Jan 23, 2020 9:52 am

Actually, simply going from the stereo out of a (power)mixer can also sound good - and gives you more than four tracks, because you’re recording it with a live mixdown.
"500€? That's the price of a J Mascis Jazzmaster!"

Post Reply