Machinegum – the NYC neo-new-wave quintet led by Fabrizio Moretti of The Strokes – has released their debut album Conduit.   The album was produced by Fab and my studio partner Jake Aron, recorded at Outlier Inn and Figure 8, mixed by Jake, myself and Andrew Maury, and mastered by Heba Kadry.  There’s quite a range here, from softer crooners to abstract synth-rock and everything in between, and features contributions by Delicate Steve and Ian Devaney of Nation of LanguageStereogum published this thoughtful review of the album to alert the world of its release; Conduit is on all streaming services now via Frenchkiss Records.

 

Lush, the debut record from teenage indie-pop sensations Snail Mail, is out now on Matador Records.  I recorded this album at Outlier Inn and Doctor Wu’s with Jake Aron, who also produced and mixed the record.  Fun fact: Lush was the the first record recorded in the new Studio A at Outlier Inn, the first record mixed at Studio Windows (the new studio started by me and Jake), and one of the last records worked on at Doctor Wu’s before it closed.  Joe LaPorta mastered the record at Sterling Sound.

Lush has been greeted with near-universal acclaim from Best New Music (and a score of 8.7) on Pitchfork; to features in the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Boston Globe; to reviews in nearly every music-related publication, and many non-musical ones as well.  Check it out if you haven’t already!

“Pristine”, the first single from Snail Mail‘s upcoming LP Lush, was just awarded “Best New Track” by Pitchfork.  The album was produced by my studio partner Jake Aron, which I helped record at Outlier Inn (in Woodridge, NY, on their Neve VR) and our old studio Doctor Wu’s (in Brooklyn, NY).  I’m very happy to have been a part of this record, and very proud of the band and Jake for the work they put into this gorgeous work.  Lush comes out June 8 on Matador Records.

Photo by Bryan Regan

Matador Records – the massively influential label and a personal longtime favorite – announced today that they’ve signed Snail Mail to their roster.  I went upstate last month to the newly re-designed and re-opened Outlier Inn (where I also recorded Parquet Courts’ Sunbathing Animal and Honduras’ Rituals) with the band and Jake Aron (my studio partner and the album’s producer) to do the basic tracking.  It sounds fantastic – the studio’s fun and beautiful, and the songs are a great progression from the first EP.  Jake’s mixing it this fall – it will be a good one!

Eaters Live @ Moogfest

So, many things…. first of all, thanks to everyone who came out to or helped put together any of the Eaters shows.  The tour was great – nothing like driving around the midwest with one of your best friends, playing music you’re excited about, meeting new people, and hearing a bunch of interesting sounds along the way.  The album’s out now on Driftless Recordings/Dull Tools.

Sunbathing Ani-Mania continues!  Parquet Courts recently debuted their new Stooge-y single ‘Black and White’  on Late Night with Seth Meyers [spoiler alert: Fred Armisen jumps onstage for the feedback solo, but Austin upstages him anyway] and released the album version the next day (stream it up above).  Slow-burner ballad ‘Instant Disassembly’ surfaced last week, and immediately grabbed a Best New Track nod from Pitchfork (stream that down below).  Sunbathing Animal is out June 3rd on What’s Your Rupture/Rough Trade.

I’ve been working with artist/director Thu Tran on a series of games for the new Tinkham Veale student center at Case Western Reserve University (where I went to school and met Thu… trippy).  The six Cleveland-inspired games are displayed on a 30′ LED screen in the middle of the main atrium, and are played through a motion-controlled Kinect sensor… so basically you’re just jumping around or punching the air in front of this giant video wall.  Since the installation is designed to run continuously in a public space, Thu and I decided to treat the sound design as a sort of generative ambient music…. something that registers to a participant as reacting to them, and that can also blend pleasantly into the background for everyone else in the space.  I’ve always enjoyed working with Thu (like on her shows Food Party and The Misguided Guide to the Origin of Everything), and it was a pleasure to collaborate with Ivan Safrin (who’s designed such bonkers games as Space Cruiser, a flight simulator at the Hayden Planetarium, and Sidescroller, where players run around a room with 20 monitors from screen to screen) and Bobo Do (whose work you may have seen projected behind Beyonce once or twice).  There’s an inherent goofiness and giddiness in the games, but there’s also a depth and beauty in everyone’s work that truly amazes me… I can’t wait to play them in the space when the building opens this fall.

Veale Center

I’ve been doing some mastering lately too.  I finished mixing and mastered the new PC Worship record Rust – this thing is unbelievable… just wait.   Jungle Green brought me a couple more damaged crooner tunes for a new single coming out on Kingfisher Bluez, following the Twelve-and-a-half Minutes of the Most Beautiful Love Songs Ever Written EP we worked on last year.  I also worked on an EP for Bordeaux, an off-kilter synth-pop duo mixed by my studio partner Jake Aron at Doctor Wu’s.  I recently mastered a new EP for gloomy doomers Vibrant Light as well.  And I just mastered Girl Talk and Freeway’s ‘Suicide Remix’, featuring A$AP Ferg – a new version of their Add (N) to X-sampling tune off Broken Ankles.

I’m in the middle of a few new projects, but please write me at jonathan[dot]schenke[at]gmail[dot]com if you’d like to talk about sound.  Thank  yeur!!