There's several ways to run a commercial studio. You can be outspoken, you can be highly visible on the local "scene" or you can quietly stay in and do some great work. In Portland, I sometimes feel that there's a misconception that my Jackpot! Recordings is the only game in town for "commercial" indie-rock type recording. Wrong. Mike Lastra has been quietly running Smegma Studios out of his house, recording Godheadsilo, The Spinanes and many others for many years. The No- No's are recent graduates of Mike's recording studio and all the better for it. Where I might have leaned toward a more drum-heavy, murkier guitar tone, he elicits a bright, almost new wave, feel and it gives the band a perfect sound for their skewed pop. More proof that there's a lot of recording going on in Portland. (Chromosome, 3559 SE Francis St. #B, Portland, OR 97202)

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

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