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Gear Gods presents Studio Pass: Kurt Ballou

with Kurt Ballou

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  •   Trailer

  •   06 Science of Sound

    15:20
See all 30 lessons
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  • 92% recommended

    14 student reviews

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About The Class

learn how to make magic happen.


In this two-day course, prolific producer Kurt Ballou will take you behind-the-scenes of GodCity Studios to show you exactly how the magic happens. This all-access studio pass will immerse you in every aspect of Kurt’s distinctive sound — from choosing and setting up gear, to tracking and mixing.

Kurt will show you the basic and advanced techniques he uses in his studio every day, and teach you how to apply them to your own recording — regardless of whether you’re working in a studio or at home with a DIY setup. Using anecdotes from his years behind the board, Kurt will also teach you his best practices for working with bands to extract the best and most inventive sounds.


Lesson Plan

  1. 01

    Introduction

    20:47
  2. 02

    Interacting with Clients

    18:35
  3. 03

    Group Personality Types

    20:31
  4. 04

    Interacting with Clients Q&A

    18:37
  5. 05

    Drums Overview

    16:42
  6. 06

    Science of Sound

    Crucial insights on sound – everything you need to know before you set up a mic.

    15:20
  7. 07

    Snare Muffling and Close Micing

    19:17
  8. 08

    Overhead Micing

    20:39
  9. 09

    Room Acoustics

    16:05
  10. 10

    Drum Tracking

    19:28
  11. 11

    Drum Tracking Q&A

    10:36
  12. 12

    Guitar Setup and Tuning

    31:41
  13. 13

    Choosing a Guitar Rig and Micing

    31:24
  14. 14

    Guitar Q&A

    20:27
  15. 15

    Guitar Tracking

    10:13
  16. 16

    Bass Sound

    32:40
  17. 17

    Bass Tracking with Q&A

    10:35
  18. 18

    Vocal Sound

    20:37
  19. 19

    Vocal Tracking with Q&A

    17:11
  20. 20

    Drum Premix & Phase Alignment

    14:10
  21. 21

    Tom Editing

    20:15
  22. 22

    Turbo Tracks for Kick and Snare

    16:05
  23. 23

    Dynamic EQ and Ambient Mic Treatments

    24:56
  24. 24

    Mix Prep Q&A 2

    13:45
  25. 25

    Phase Alignment for Guitar and Bass

    17:25
  26. 26

    Bass and Guitar Treatment

    17:11
  27. 27

    Vocal Treatment

    17:02
  28. 28

    Full Mix Treatment

    26:02
  29. 29

    Mix Refinement and Alt Mixes

    19:50
  30. 30

    Mastering

    25:03

Meet Your Expert

Kurt Ballou

Kurt Ballou is the brains behind Boston, MA’s Godcity Studios. One of the most prolific producers in metal/hardcore/punk, he’s worked with a laundry list of bands including everyone from Champion and Have Heart to Kvelertak, Cave In and Nails. He ... read more

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Bonus Material

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Get access to exclusive bonus content when you purchase this class.

  • pdf GodCity Salem Impulses

92% of students recommend this class.
See what some of them have to say.

  • Creativelive Student

    March 2014

    I've been engineering out of my home studio for the past 7 years. I recently graduated from college for studio production and recording bands has been my main source of income for the past 5 years or so. Honestly, this course was incredible and completely worth the $100. Kurt Ballou truly understands the art and he really got me excited to be a recording engineer. I already knew a lot of the techniques and details he went over, but he presented his ideas so intelligently that I was happy to sit through the topics that focused on beginners. I'm not a huge metal or hardcore fan, but Kurt has amazing taste in the way he produces these bands. It's hard to listen to some of the releases today that have the life sucked out of their music with full-on drum replacement and crazy amounts of autotune. It was just refreshing to listen to an engineer who totally knows what makes rock music exciting. This class is worth checking out even just to watch a successful modern engineer show you the basics of his craft.

  • Creativelive Student

    February 2014

    This course has been the most comprehensive I have watched concerning the art of audio manipulation. The points made in terms of phase relationships, mic technique, and polarity are valuable insight into getting good sound. My personal favorite was the way he edits toms. All the content is good stuff and well worth your money. Icing on the cake in the included IR samples. I purchased the course for $79. I love you Kurt!

  • Keith Foster

    November 2017

    First off, even though I'm neither a beginner nor a recording professional, this class is absolutely worth the money you spend on it - especially if you plan on making heavy music. There are enough tips, tricks and guidance in here to get your money's worth many times over. That said, as an indie artist who goes to a studio to record drum tracks, then does the rest ina home studio I found some of the things disheartening. Much of the class follows a "I do this thing using item / amp / microphone / plugin (X), it's pretty cool" vibe, and it sounds cool.... until you check the price. As an example, the 'stereo buss processing' section sounds fun to try, except for the part where the three pieces of gear cost about $8K. As a result I found myself figuring out how to incorporate the essence of what he was saying without the gear budget to do so. Maybe I'm not the intended audience but a little more concept and less gearhead would have been even better. That said you should totally get it, it's a low price for so many hours of great content.

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