Jul/Aug 2024

Welcome to issue #162 of Tape Op.

Steve Albini & Lil BUB
The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research Automatic Computer (CSIRAC) was one of the world's first digital computers. ( Museums Victoria)

Ever since the dawn of the DAW [digital audio workstation] and digital recording, people far too often have equated recording music mainly with the tracks getting captured and, later, the assembling of a mix. But this is only one aspect of making a recording. Most of what I find myself doing in the studio is completely removed from the actual technical recording process. These actions can include the initial conversations with the artists (as noted in the End Rant this issue), changing out guitars and/or amps, modifying amplifier settings, discussing exact parts played, changing drum patterns, removing sections of a song, looking for keyboard patches, swapping stompboxes, trying out different drums and cymbals, changing instrument strings, removing amp hum, mapping out song structures, deciding on BPMs, moving players around in a room, and much more.

Sure, we should hit record eventually, but remember that in many cases most of what makes a record awesome happens BEFORE the tracks get captured. Making music is so much more than simply looking at a computer screen.

— Larry Crane, editor & Founder

In This Issue See more →

Steve Evetts: Remain Human

by Sam Retzer

Belleville, New Jersey, is a deceptively quiet enclave up the river from Newark. A beautiful mural here, a grungy secondhand shop there – it’s a collision of worlds. A bit like the...


by Geoff Stanfield

This interview originally ran as a podcast in December of 2022. Since that time the band has released a new album, A La Sala. Texas trio Khruangbin have paired with Malian guitarist Vieux Farka...

Point of Memory

by Dan Timlin

Point of Memory's Void Pusher is self-described “acoustic computer music” from ambient’s nonconformer Jason Crumer, with help from frequent collaborator Tim Gick. Jason seems driven...


Columns See more →

End Rant

First Impressions

by Larry Crane

For 25 years, I have owned and run a commercial business, Jackpot! Recording Studio, in Portland, Oregon. During this time, I have developed a set of particular ideas of how to present my studio...

Gear Geeking

Gear Geeking w/ Andy...

by Andy Hong

I've suffered through half a dozen home and studio moves over the past eight years. The moves have been challenging, to say the least, and two sources of frustration have been ISPs and wireless LANs....


Gear Reviews See more →

LiNTEC Analog EQ

by Lindell Audio  |  reviewed by Mike Kosacek

I've found both the Lindell Audio LiN76 [Tape Op #153] and LiN2A [#156] compressors to be extremely useful in my studio, so I jumped at the chance to check out the new, one channel LiNTEC Vintage...

011 FET SDC Mic

by Soyuz  |  reviewed by Scott McChane

Ever since reading Thom Monahan's informative and gushing review of the Soyuz SU-017 tube mic [Tape Op #117], I've been curious about the company's products. JB and Robert Cheek's writeup of the...

Nuance Select Monitor Controller

by Radial Engineering  |  reviewed by Scott McChane

The Nuance Select is Radial Engineering's new desktop stereo monitor controller from the bench of their lead designer, W.C. “Hutch” Hutchison (formerly of Manley Labs and Rupert Neve...


by Hit'n'Mix  |  reviewed by Geoffrey Knecht

There has been so much talk about AI and its uses, but I haven't come across many products that are practically useful within the scope of my daily work. There are many fun products out there for...

SlatFusor PL Diffusor

by GIK Acoustics  |  reviewed by Geoff Stanfield

I've been a long-time user of GIK Acoustic's studio acoustic treatments, employing their 244 FlexRange [Tape Op #113] and Tri-Trap corner [#113] bass traps in my many studios over the years. They...

Atoms Virtual Instrument

by Baby Audio  |  reviewed by Dana Gumbiner

The Baby Audio Atoms Physical Modeling Synthesizer plug-in is a wild virtual instrument created in collaboration between Baby Audio (plug-in developers in Pasadena, California) and Silvin Willemsen, a...

K371-BT Headphones

by AKG  |  reviewed by Geoff Stanfield

I always have a need for good headphones, and I am fortunate enough to own several different types from various manufacturers. Like reference monitors, they each have a different sonic profile, and...

Part 2: Human-Related

by Non-Recording Gear Studio Essentials  |  reviewed by Larry Crane, Geoff Stanfield

Previously, we discussed instrument-related essentials that every studio should have on hand. With "Part 2," we're looking at items that keep the humans in your studio more comfortable, creative, and...

RAY Condenser Mic

by LEWITT  |  reviewed by Daniel Ryan Morse

LEWITT is one of the most innovative and thoughtful microphone designers right now. In a sea of manufacturers churning out knock-off mics, they stand out for releasing fresh, exciting designs. I...


Tape Op is a bi-monthly magazine devoted to the art of record making.

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