Seth and John let loose after 3 days of intense playing.
This past week I had the opportunity to work with my good friends Seth Brown and John Niekrasz, together known as Why I Must Be Careful. I met Seth and John several years ago, when they played a show in Olympia with another band they were involved in, Fly! Fly! Fly! Fly! Fly!. I was so astonished by the intensity and presence of their playing that I offered to record the band gratis, which resulted in the album Self-Rule. Self-Rule was my first major recording production, and was a technically and musically challenging project to complete. Needless to say, I was excited to record them again, and see where the process would take us this time.
WIMBC, like Fly! x 5, is all about the performance, live and largely without overdubs. I set Seth and John up on the opposite sides of the room, micing up Seth’s Rhodes setup with a SM7 and T.H.E Audio CA-4. I began with a spaced overhead pair, a center mic, and a bass drum mic on John’s drumkit. After some playback listening, I augmented and adjusted the mic setup to better capture John’s extremely quick playing. After we got the sounds keyed in, they went at it, working on rehearsed parts of a long composition, shorter musical themes, and improvisation, taking note of promising takes. On the last day, we assembled the long composition with the best takes, and did a few vocal overdubs for musical emphasis.
We got a lot done in those three days, especially in the case of such physically and mentally demanding music like WIMBC’s. Seth and John showed a remarkable amount of self-disipline, and maintained a high level of playing throughout the entire session, which never failed to impress me.