In the last two weeks, about half of the new albums with featured reviews on Pitchfork, an independent-music Web site, were recorded either in makeshift studios or professional ones in pastoral settings. Arcade Fire bought an old church outside Montreal to record last week’s “Neon Bible,” which has since sold 92,000 copies, according to Nielsen SoundScan. Brit-rock band the Kaiser Chiefs recorded their second album, “Yours Truly, Angry Mob,” which comes out March 27, at a country manor in Berkshire, England. (Rustic is relative: The manor includes a professional studio and advertises its gym and heated pool.)
[LCD Soundsystem]‘s well-reviewed new album, “Sound of Silver,” will come out Tuesday, at the same time as “Living with the Living” from Ted Leo and the Pharmacists, which was recorded at the same countryside studio in North Brookfield, Mass. There, the 100-acre Long View Farm Studios operates like a bed and breakfast — with recording studios in a barn and a 19th-century farmhouse. (Nightly room rate, with recording sessions: $1,000 to $2,000)…
One reason for the recent wave: Smaller and less expensive digital production tools have allowed producers and bands to set up studios in unusual places. (Rock outfit My Morning Jacket has recorded in a Kentucky grain silo.) Moreover, music’s sales slump has put many studios out of business, and their equipment has flooded the market, according to Mark McKenna, general manager of Allaire Studios, a facility in New York’s Catskill Mountains. “The whole business is becoming decentralized,” he says.
There are several creative advantages to working in an off-the-beaten-path locale, including less noise, fewer distractions, and a “we came here and we gotta do this” sense of purpose. Plus, you can grow your own drugs, thus eliminating the middle-man, and allowing you to spend your weed per diem on boondocks prostitutes.
‘Great CD — Loved the Crickets’ [WSJ, registration required]