Housefox Studios – Recording Pepperhead and “The Housefox Sessions EP”

Sydney’s Northern Beaches band Pepperhead are a fantastic slice of rock ‘n’ roll, with members hailing from both London and Sydney. The band take on a range of influences from Foo Fighters to the Libertines, the Pixies to Muse, Radio Birdman to The Strokes, blending it into their own unique take on modern alternative rock.

Having only just got together in 2015, Pepperhead wasted no time writing and recording their debut EP here at Housefox Studios and we were completely honoured when they decided to call it “The Housefox Sessions EP”.

We spent 4 days in total tracking the 4 songs for the EP.

Day one we started out setting up drums, Mark (Drummer) had an older Pearl Export kit which needed a bit of attention and tuning up, so we spent a bit of time retuning the whole kit and getting the drums sounding great in the room before miking up. We had 57’s snare top and bottom, 421’s on toms, Audix pencil on hats, Rode k2 outside kick, AKG D12 VR on inside kick, Neumann KM 184’s on overheads and Neumann TLM 102’s on rooms.

Pepperhead were after a live and honest feel and vibe for the recordings, so we set vocals and guitars up in the control room to run guide tracks live for Mark and tracked the drums with no click tracks.

Guitars were all Epiphone Dot Semi Hollow Body running through a vox AC30, a pretty winning combination doubling all rhythm’s with 421’s close miking the cab and a Neumann TLM 102 room mic . Bass was a Fender Jazz Bass through a Fender Rumble which was a great little set up with plenty of punch, we ran a Radial Di through and popped the AKG D12 on the speaker, mixed some overdrive in and she was humming quite nicely.

Vocals came in no worries at all running with a Neumann just driving the pre a little.  Louisa has a fantastic sense of dynamics and hits the notes with no trouble at all, which was a pleasure to record. We had a lot of fun with the vocals and came up with some great additions on the fly. The track “Unresolved” starts out with some super sexy tones then rips your head off with no warning at all and kicks into a punk rock slam that kicks out before you know what hit you!

“See Through You” was one of the tracks that stood out as a lot of fun recording, getting everyone in the band singing in on this track doing back ups and working harmonies in the chorus.  It was a lot of fun!

Overall, recording Pepperhead was a breeze and loads of fun.  We came up with a killer little EP from a band playing everything on there. It wasn’t a tonne of effects and studio trickery, no copy, no paste, just strait up rock ‘n’ roll that shows a very honest representation of a great live rock ‘n’ roll band…. and that’s what I loved about it!

Ryan Miller

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