According to The Pulse Of Radio, FOO FIGHTERS frontman Dave Grohl and STONE SOUR/SLIPKNOT vocalist Corey Taylor spoke with CBS Local about Sound City studios, the now-closed recording facility that is the subject of Grohl‘s debut as a feature documentary director, “Sound City: Real To Reel”. Grohl was inspired to make the film after the studio closed and he bought its famous Neve analog recording board for his own home studio. SLIPKNOT recorded its 2001 “Iowa” album on that board, with Taylor saying, “The thing about that Neve board is that it has such a personality. No two albums sound the same coming out of that board because of the different love that you put into it, the different variables.”
Grohl, who was with NIRVANA for the recording of its 1991 milestone “Nevermind” at Sound City, recalled, “Had we recorded that record in a different way, the music wouldn’t have sounded the same. And if it didn’t sound the same, it might not have had the same impact.”
Grohl told The Pulse Of Radio a while back why he preferred recording in analog instead of using more modern digital equipment. “Definitely recording with analog 24-track equipment, you get a lot more personality and imperfection. Digital recording, you have the option to make things perfect and you can manipulate them and sometimes you just suck the human element out of it. But with tape, once you hit ‘record,’ it really is what it is.”
Sound City was also known for the superb acoustics of its recording room as well as the sheer number of classic albums created there, including discs from Tom Petty, Neil Young, FLEETWOOD MAC, NINE INCH NAILS, RAGE AGAINST THE MACHINE, METALLICA and many others.
Grohl interviewed more than 40 musicians for his film, which premiered this past Friday (January 18) at the Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah.
The event also featured the debut of the SOUND CITY PLAYERS, an ensemble featuring a number of the musicians from the film. Grohl orchestrated a series of collaborations on new songs that appear on the movie’s soundtrack.
Two of those songs have already been unveiled: “Cut Me Some Slack”, featuring the surviving members of NIRVANA and Paul McCartney, and “From Can To Can’t”, which features Grohl, Taylor and CHEAP TRICK guitarist Rick Nielsen.
The SOUND CITY PLAYERS will perform at the Hollywood Palladium in Los Angeles on January 31, the same night that the movie premieres at that city’s Cinerama Dome and in 44 other cities around the U.S. Like the Sundance gig, the L.A. show will feature Grohl, members of NIRVANA and FOO FIGHTERS, Taylor, Nielsen, Stevie Nicks, Rick Springfield and more.
A review of “Sound City” from its premiere screening on Friday, published at Billboard.com, said that the movie was a “must-see film for anyone who cares about recording techniques, equipment and studios. Dave Grohl‘s ode to a shabby studio in the San Fernando Valley is detailed and loving in its exposition and final chapter of resolution.”