Songwriter, artist and producer Manchester Rain finds himself working alone in his sky-lab deep inside the belly of the beats Manchester UK where studio Fort Knox microphones invite the stray sirens and wicked weather to be a part of the music.
A collaboration of haunting sorts, working between Manchester, UK and a reclusive hideaway buried deep inside the French Alps (Bass Camp), Manchester Rain absorbs the two opposing environments and allows them to find their way into the music, environment is everything.
Pop sensibilities anchor urban tinged cross-genre music: big beats live instruments and vintage synths work together where saxophone meet Moog.
Manchester Rain produces and writes all of his own material and works on the aesthetics of all related film / video and artwork.
Manchester Rain is an independent artist releasing material under record label, Subdust Music.
Musitrendz sat down with Ralph from Manchester Rain to discuss musical equipment and the business in general and the results can be seen below:
Do you think that how much you receive for fans streaming your music is fair ?
Well; it’s all relative… in as much as; it is what it is… and nobody is forced to be on streaming platforms. I mean; it’s probably a little unfair in simple terms; but the economics of it does stack up from the platform side, apparently! It’s an exciting time and we still see an industry coming to terms with streaming; even the charts are skewed because people are trying to equate streams with sales; perhaps it’s time the whole chart concept and way things are done died a death, to be reborn anew!
What changes would you like to see in the music industry ?
I’m not sure I see any real need for major change; I think we through the worst of it. The major labels suing kids for downloading songs and the like. It’s about seeing where things are heading and just working with it… I see is as though; the music industry was dragged, kicking and screaming into the new millennium and it’s now gotten used to how things are headed.
What instruments, equipment, recording and production gear do you use ?
I use Reason and Pro Tools software. Microphones: I use a Flea 47 (my pride and joy) and also, a Shure SM7. I tend to have everything go through a Neve 1073 pre and then into a 1176 compressor; I own a 6176 unit by UA and one half of that is a 1176; it’s just an amazing compressor and gives you THAT sound. I just purchased a Warm Audio EQ and have yet to use it but it should be awesome. On my smaller studio setup; I use an original Rode NT2 and SM7 (again) with a Cloud-lifter going into an Apogee Mini-Me. The Mini-Me is discounted now but it was an incredible piece of kit; small and portable with incredible pre-amps, a compressor and clock built in. They stopped making it, I hear because it was costing them too much to make. I actually bought another of these to keep as a backup! Instruments wise; I have a cheap Ibanez electric guitar that I love, an old Ibanez BTB 5-string bass that goes VERY low… and then a small collection of synths; my favourite being my Moog Slim Phatty! But I also love my DSI Tetra as it’s multi-voice and means I can play chords on it. I also have an old Novation K-Station, a DSI Mopho and some other obscurities!
What’s the best studio you have ever recorded in ?
Who’s your fave all time music producer ?
Probably Micheal Cretu; the man behind the Enigma music project.
Drum machine or real drummer ?
Both! There’s a place for both.. as Phil Collins famously demonstrated… Hahha
Do you prefer recording to live work ?
Recording; I love being inside the science lab that is the recording studio; nothing beats the creation of something from nothing. It’s everything to me.
Official Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EYqrsXBNFRA
Manchester Rain by Manchester Rain is out now: https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/manchester-rain-single/id1227620111