Book Review: The Recording Secrets Behind 50 Great Albums

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The Recording Secrets Behind 50 Great Albums
(Backbeat Books)
Edited by Kylee Swenson Gordon
Rating: 4 stars

Drawn from the vaults of Remix, Electronic Musician, and EQ Magazine, The Recording Secrets Behind 50 Great Albums reprints articles designed to educate readers on the recording, mixing, and songwriting processes of an eclectic assortment of musicians. Classics discs, such as Nick Drake’s Pink Moon, Pink Floyd’s Pipers At The Gates Of Dawn, and The Doors’s Morrison Hotel sit side by side with contemporary releases from artists like Danger Mouse, Foo Fighters, and Tegan and Sara. Genre isn’t limited either; this compilation doesn’t discriminate against country or rap any more than it does prog-infused-electronic-dream-pop.

The articles presented here have an immense level of depth to them. So deep, in fact, that – much like the seemingly carefree activity of scuba diving – those who lack experience may develop a crippling bout of nitrogen narcosis while trying to traverse these lettered waters. I’d recommend at least a foundational knowledge in recording practices and equipment before attempting to read this book. Filled with interviews with producers, sound engineers and artists of some of the most acclaimed albums ever created, as well as tips and suggestions for your own recording projects, the task of completing this book is no light affair, but the knowledge gained is invaluable.

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