Free plugin from SSL, makers of very expensive kit

SSL have just released a free (if you register)mac only plugin version of their 'Listen Mic Compressor'. The LMC is the compressor that accidentally created the drum sound on Phil Collins' 'In The Air Tonight', which appeared in the pilot episode of Miami Vice, and so gave birth to: 1) The Eighties. 2) Hit songs appearing in films and TV shows. 3) The popular pastime of driving around in your shiny black sports car while unhappy, listening to Phil Collins.
From the SSL site, here is the full story, via Hugh Padham, via Mix Magazine: "On a normal console, you have a button to press to talk to the musicians in the headphones, but you did not have a button to press for us to listen to the musicians. To do that, you'd plug a microphone into a spare channel on the desk and listen to your musicians through that. But the SSL had a reverse talkback button and there was a microphone hanging up in the studio already, a dedicated input into the reverse mic input on the console. And on this microphone, they had the most unbelievably heavy compressor, so you could hear somebody who was over in the corner.
"One day, Phil (Collins) was playing the drums,” Hugh recalls, “and I had the reverse talkback on because he was speaking, and then he started playing the drums. The most unbelievable sound came out because of the heavy compressor. I said, 'My God, this is the most amazing sound! Steve, listen to this.' But the way the reverse talkback was setup, you couldn't record it. So I had the desk modified that night..."
There's a great Wikipedia entry on 'In the Air Tonight' here. Plugin download page here.

There's a "w" missing in the link to the download page.
The whole registration process is convoluted (register with store, sends email, clicnk download link in email, authorises download and takes you back to the store, then you can finally download it) but I got there in the end.

It's really nasty.
In a good way? Can't tell yet :)
Not that horrendous gated snare drum sound that was so big in the 80s? It was really hideous and ruined many an otherwise good record.

By the way, SSL are based in a village called Begbroke, North of Oxford. (I used to live there).
oh my god, a song RUINED by the snare effect! How could they?

i can't wait to ruin my tracks later when i get home.

I'm always after more free compression! :) and if it's horribly 80's so much the bettER!
Speaking of In the Air Tonight, I believe that song debuted a year or so before in the soundtrack to Risky Business alongside with a great score by Tangerine Dream!
Phil got the idea of using gates on drums from Peter Gabriel. Check out Peter's #3 album that came out in 1980, a few years BEFORE In The Air Tonight. In the first song, Intruder, you hear that trademark sound. And guess who was the drummer on that song? Phil Collins. Peter was the originator of that sound. Phil just refined it.
I'm pretty sure that Hugh Padham (the producer) originated the sound. If you read the full version of the story posted above:
from Mix magazine, then you'll see that it took place during the recording of Peter Gabriel 3.
i was always under the impression that phil collins stole that drum sound martin atkins' drumming on public image ltd.'s "the flowers of romance" album....
this is NOT the gated drum sound.
The ssl login page doesn't work. You register, create a password, then when you login with it, nothing happens, it just reloads the login page. Someone fix it please!
Post a Comment

<< Home
Music Thing on Twitter
    follow MT on Twitter

    Music Thing Hits:
    Music Thing Heroes:
    Music Thing Friends:
    My music gear for sale
    DIY Modular Synth
    Matrix Synth
    Create Digital Music
    Analog Industries
    Boing Boing Gadgets
    London Video Production
    Wire to the Ear
    Palm Sounds
    Noise Addicts
    Retro Thing
    Analogue Haven
    Music Thing Massive
    About Music Thing:
    Send tips to Music Thing
    About this site
    Music Thing Massive
    RSS Feeds

    Problem with the ads?
    Please let me know