We found Brendan doing sound for the Chills on tour. When he got a look at Tape Op, he wanted to sit in on the interview--and when Martin got called out to autograph a female fan's shirt, "Well, she can't take it off for you to sign", we chatted with Brendan for a moment.
So what's your background, what brings you here?
I used to run Volt studios in Dunedin and I used to run IMD [Records]. I started off with King Loser and Trash and eventually it evolved into a studio and a label, which as you know, is now defunct. In the course of running Volt I started working with Martin doing demos for the new album, plus his track on Disturbed [a compilation album on IMD]. He was working with lots of various people there, which was cool, and he was still into working with me.
Apparently. So you recorded with King Loser?
Yeah. I did the first album. That was quite an interesting one 'cause it was recorded on four track all over the country. We brought it to Fish Street [Studios], dumped it across to 16 [track] and at the same time added the vocals, put some pieces in and it was done in one day, starting at mid-day and finishing at 6 the next morning; then driving home in the snow. It was a bit of a budget one. The whole album ended up costing $350.
New Zealand or US money?
It was New Zealand money. [a lot less than US dollars]
What kind of setup was the Volt Studio?
Initially, it was a really old, crappy Soundtracs desk [mixer, yankee] and a Tascam 8 track. The King Loser single was done on that. Sandra Bell, the double single that she had, and the Bilders album, Cut, was done on that as well. We upgraded at that point and got a 16 track, once again a Tascam, and it was an NSR 16S. It was a 1/2" with Dolby S [noise reduction] which I really liked.
One of the few Dolbys that work.
Yes. I got a Mackie 32 8 buss which was very reasonably priced and sounded okay. That was the basic setup.
Is that studio still going?
It doesn't exist anymore. Gone.