Posted by Cruz Azul

Thu Jun 10, 2010 9:32 am

Just got the Renegade Creation cd and loving the tones and playing on it. Think some of the drums were tracked at Gary Novak’s place but Unconscious Studios is listed on the tracks also.

Is Unconscious Studio Mike’s? If so –

Wonder what his studio setup is like? Just home studio style? or dedicated rooms? (I remember reading about Scott Henderson recording guitars in his lounge room etc and wondering if this was a similar vibe or more of a full studio space..)

Think some of the Kirk Fletcher stuff was done there from memory too???

Anyway, just intrigued after listening to the killer sounds on those cds…

Postby zuzu

Thu Jun 10, 2010 5:15 pm

According to this article it’s Landau’s home studio.

Guitar Edge Article

When it comes to creating a band, it is all about the chemistry between the musicians. When approached by producer Mike Varney to create another album with Jing Chi—the fusion group with bassist Jimmy Haslip and überdrummer Vinnie Colaiuta—Robben Ford was all for it. Haslip and Ford had been playing together since the late seventies, developing a rapport that few guitar/bass combos have achieved.

Unfortunetly, due to Colaiuta’s intense schedule, he was unavailable and the duo brought in drummer Gary Novak. According to Ford, that personnel move led to the decision to create a completely new band. Guitar legend Michael Landau was also brought in and Renegade Creation was born. “This has been a long time coming for Mike and me. He played in my band for a little while—actually, it was the Yellowjackets” says Ford when asked about first meeting Landau. “The Yellowjackets had evolved out of my band and he had played a few shows with us in the early eighties. I always loved the way he played and looked for a way for us to work together; this group seemed a perfect fit.”

The formation of the group was very organic, with Novak playing recently with both Ford and Landau’s solo bands. It seemed obvious to everyone involved that it was time to get into the studio and make a record. As with many groups that have two major-league guitarists, it can be easy to make an album full of pyrotechnics. That wasn’t the case for these two long-time friends. “There is a real natural give and take between Mike and me,” says Ford. “I want him to play and I want to hear him play. He feels the same about me. You don’t want to do too much of the “back and forth” thing on an album. Usually on Mike’s tunes, I am the featured soloist and he solos more on my tunes.”

The material on the album ranges from laid-back swamp rock (Landau’s “What’s Up”) to jazzy instrumentals (Ford’s “Peace”). Both guitarists brought material for the record into the sessions. Drummer Novak contributed the closing track “Brothers” and the group collaborated on the bluesy “The Darkness,” which according to Landau began with an idea from Ford and then finished during the sessions. “I wrote three tunes before the sessions,” says Landau. “We knew from the beginning that we wanted to make a rock ‘n’ roll record. I made demos for my tunes and we ended up using some of my demo parts on the record. My solo for ‘What’s Up’ came from those demos.”

The self-titled album was recorded at Landau’s home studio in Los Angeles. According to Ford, once the band was set up in the studio, it was just a matter of hitting record and letting things happen. Haslip produced the session, and along with Novak, brought some real energy to the album. “Jimmy put the whole project together. He’s not a bad bass player either [laughs],” Landau recalled about the sessions. “I think Gary brings an incredible amount of fire to the songs. In my opinion, I think this is some of the best drumming he has done in a rock ‘n’ roll vein.”

Considering everyone’s busy schedules, touring can sometimes be difficult. Renegade Creation just wrapped up a short West Coast tour and according to Landau, the group will hit the road later this year with shows on the East Coast and in Japan. —Jason Shadrick

Renegade Creation’s Gearbox

Robben Ford

GUITARS: ’55 Gibson Les Paul, ’60 Fender Telecaster, ’63 Epiphone Riviera, ’68 Gibson ES-335

AMPS: Dumble Overdrive Special CABS: Dumble 2×12 with Celestion Super 65s

EFFECTS: Hermida Audio Zendrive Overdrive

STRINGS: D’Addario .010–.046 PICKS: D’Addario 1mm

Michael Landau

GUITARS: ’63 fiesta red Fender Strat, ’68 Gibson Les Paul goldtop, ’63 Gibson SG

AMPS: Shur Badger 18 head

CABS: Kerry Wright 4×12 open-back cab with Celestion Heritage Series G12-65 speakers

EFFECTS: Lovepedal COT 50, Lovepedal Eternity Fuse, Maxon SD-9

STRINGS: D’Addario .010-.046 or .011–.049

PICKS: Dunlop Nylon 1mm

CABLES: Belden 9778

Posted by markmod

Thu Jun 10, 2010 9:24 pm

I’ve been over to Mike’s plenty of times to drop off or pick up gear, his home studio is pretty cool. The garage has been converted to a ‘live room’ and the control room is located in the house. The real magic is his API console.

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