This book certainly screams, “Place me on the studio coffee table,” with its luxurious hardbound cover featuring photos of rare and/or fascinating looking mics from the author’s personal collection of hundreds (thousands?) of mics manufactured in the previous century. Detailed photographs of his mics, old print advertisements, and images of mics in use fill up 135 pages. Speaking of mics in use, the main section of this book features mics paired with moments in spoken-word history. While remaining informative about each mic itself, we also discover how it captured or broadcast important moments in the past. Some are positive messages, from folks like Martin Luther King Jr., Nelson Mandela, or Václav Havel; and others are terrifying, such as Adolf Hitler’s speeches. A section entitled “More Microphones” follows, with photos of several mics per page, accompanied by short descriptions. Where else would you find a book that has a page full of “Ugly Microphones,” let alone “DIY,” “Spy Microphones,” “Body Doubles,” and my favorite (and informative) page, “Connectors”? I found this book very interesting and educational, and there are so many mics I’ve never even seen in person or used. It’s also well laid out and a treat to thumb through. I guess it’s time to take it to my studio for my clients to drool over now!

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

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