Words and Photos by Paul Scott
Nestled deep in the heart of the Valley, the fires of traditional recording principles and practices are kept burning bright by the Foo Fighters and their audio acolytes at 606 Studios. By now many of us are familiar with the famous Neve controller featured in Dave Grohl’s 2013 rockumentary, “Sound City”. Dave purchased the legendary board that has worked its much-vaunted magic on albums by artists such as Nirvana, Kyuss, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Fleetwood Mac, Neil Young, Rick Springfield, Tom Petty, Rage Against The Machine, and Slipknot. Maintaining and utilizinging vintage audio equipment requires tremendous dedication, something these guys have in spades. From the moment you step into 606, the authentic devotion to the sorcery and science of recording music is omnipresent. It is precisely because of this that we were so stoked about our demonstration appointment.
“Many amps sound great in the room, but then lose their luster through a microphone. This is where Black Wing amps really shine— there’s no disconnect between the live room and the control room.”
Black Wing Amplifier’s founder, James Heidrich, and myself were graciously welcomed by Dave Grohl’s talented tech Alastair “Ally” Christie and 606 engineer and wizard, Samon Rajabnik. After setting up the amps and mics, James went over each piece of Black Wing equipment in detail as Ally and Samon then put them through their paces. Things got deep very fast: settings were adjusted, recorded and evaluated systematically. The technical questions posed and observations that were voiced made it perfectly clear that these guys are the real deal– professionals driven by a love for music and the gear that inspires and shapes it.
We were humbled and delighted by the excitement and positive reactions elicited as knobs were tweaked and chords rang out. Every demonstration for us is a moment of truth when the countless hours of this labor of love are proven worthy. We came away with tremendous respect for the folks at 606 and the desire to fully support their efforts to keep great authentic music alive. We also came away with fewer amps…