Mojo’s Pick of the Week – Behringer Behritone C5A Speaker

bc5a 150x138 Mojos Pick of the Week   Behringer Behritone C5A SpeakerThe Behritone C5A and its updated sibling, the C50A, are copies of the famed Auratone speakers, known for being so bad they’re good. They became staples in music studios after mixing and mastering engineers discovered that if they could get a track to sound good on the little brown cubes, they’d sound good anywhere.

I’d considered picking them up before but it didn’t occur to me that I really only needed one to do the job, until I read Graham Cochrane’s post on them recently on his excellent Recording Revolution website. The combination of this lo-fi speaker and mixing in mono have completely changed the way I mix.

The speaker itself is an active 30W, 5 1/4″ speaker with a 90 Hz to 17 kHz frequency response and retails for about $99US. I was happy and lucky to get mine on ebay for $65 shipped. It has XLR, 1/4″ TRS and RCA input connectors plus a gain control. I am using the 1/4″ connector with a mono > stereo adapter and run through my computer stereo out. The main trick to this speaker is to acclimate your ears by listening to songs you know well on it and hearing the difference from what you think you know. Reference tracks are a must. But mono mixing on this speaker forces you to concentrate on the midrange meat of a song, and can quickly help you to fix overlapping frequencies for better clarity.

bad speaker sim 150x146 Mojos Pick of the Week   Behringer Behritone C5A SpeakerI went a step further and decided to simulate this speaker in the box just for fun, by creating a Logic channel strip preset with the Gain plugin set to mono, the EQ rolled off gradually below 500 Hz and above 2 Khz (a Bob Katz suggestion) and very light (1.5) compression. Running your mix through an optional channel strip like this prior to stereo out will give a good impression of how your mix will sound through a limited range mono speaker.

The speaker itself? Wonderfully crummy sounding. It’s a game-changer for me and I can already hear my mixes getting better. Definitely worthy of a Pick of the Week.

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Mojo’s Pick of the Week – Sanctuary “The Year the Sun Died”

sanctuary album 150x150 Mojos Pick of the Week   Sanctuary The Year the Sun DiedSeattle’s metal sons Sanctuary released only two albums before splitting up. The first, “Refuge Denied”, was produced by none other than Dave Mustaine, and the second was a tight, heavy, and mature killer of an album, “Into the Mirror Black”, which blew me away when it came out in 1989. After the band split in 1992, frontman Warrel Dane and guitarist Jeff Loomis formed Nevermore.

Fast forward 18 years to the latest release from the reformed Sanctuary, “The Year the Sun Died“, and I swear it sounds like they never broke up. Rentless, heavy, and mature, it’s the natural progression of one of the great unsung bands of late 80s/early 90s heavy metal. I grabbed the last copy before Amoeba sold out for the second time. It’s a must listen!

Sanctuary on Last.fm

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Mojo’s Pick of the Week – Farmikos

If you know, you know. Farmikos, the LA-based music project featuring former Ozzy and David Lee Roth guitarist Joe Holmes and singer Robbie Locke is one to watch. Starting with a release of 4 songs in March 2014, they’ve slowly released 4 more over the course of the year on their CD Baby site and are now on the verge of dropping their debut album.

Recorded on analog and transferred to digital, the sound of these killer tracks is as classic as their 70s and 80s era metal and rock influences. Fans of everything from classic Ozzy to Badmotorfinger-era Soundgarden will find something to love in Farmikos. Don’t take my word for it, Eddie Trunk of That Metal Show knows!

Video teaser for the 4-song EP:

Find Farmikos on the webz:
http://farmikos.com
https://twitter.com/farmikos
https://www.youtube.com/user/FarmikosOfficial

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