McLennan is a man of many talents - furniture maker, dog
lover, recording engineer, bassist, keyboard player, illustrator,
teacher's aide, comedian, drummer, singer, songwriter, arranger,
very decent human being. His current
album, Hits From
The Brittle Building, has received an almost embarrassing
level of critical acclaim. We're very pleased about that having
the record in installments as songs reached a listenable state.
From the very first early mix to the final master CD we felt
cut off at the knees as A&R men, being able to give no more
enlightening response than - That sounds great Ross.
Ross will admit that, before he had
bought the PC he used for the bulk of the sessions, he wasn't exactly
an expert in computer recording. In fact, he was very much learning
on the job and we shudder to think how much actual time went into
the recording process, and how many blind alleys were frustratingly
blundered down. We, however, had only to listen to the good bits
as they were finished and they were more than good. As Ross
left the office and wandered down the stairs to mount his bicycle
and head back to his computer we shook our heads and wondered just
how he did it. We already knew these were great songs but were
unprepared for the sounds and arrangements we were hearing. After
all, Ross was playing almost everything in a room the size of a
large cupboard, pressing the buttons, setting the levels and making
the tea. We had yet to ask him to do the art work for the record
as well. But that's another story.
So what I thought I would do here is
ask Ross a few pertinent questions re each song on Hits From
The Brittle Building. There are many drum sounds I want to
know more about, samples pinging around when I listen on headphones,
strange vocal effects and instruments I just can't identify. As
soon as I get the answers they'll be presented here for you with
little mp3 samples so you know exactly what he's referring to.