Alabama-based rock band One Like Son wanted to challenge themselves when they returned to the “studio” to record their third album after a 10-year music hiatus. So on Jan. 1, 2010, band frontman Stephen Poff vowed to spend the year recording a new set of songs solely with iPhone track apps.
“I feel this is one of our best sounding recordings,” Poff said. In the past, Poff recorded two albums the traditional way – in a studio using condenser microphones, hard disc systems, amps, cables, patchbays and other accessories.
According to Poff, recording tracks using only applications was much more difficult than he anticipated. His previous iPhone-recording experience only involved experimenting on basic four-track applications that allows users to record, then overlay four tracks of music to play together.
The 11-track album was finished right before the new year on Dec. 31, 2011.
The four men involved in the recording of Start the Show were Poff (on vocals, guitar, bass and organ), Bill Rester, Perry Brown and Bryan Segraves. The artists were able to record music on their own iPhones and put the music together at a later time.
“You’re not watching the clock and not so much worried about playing together,” Poff said. “We didn’t get to play together. It’s a little more tedious than doing that.”
Just a quick tip for fellow musicians who may be tempted to use iPhone applications to record their next record — while it is cheaper not to use a real studio, it is more difficult to move the tracks and lay them together using your iPhone.
Start the Show will be available on iTunes and Bandcamp on Jan.17. As to being the only band zealous enough to record an entire album on an iPhone, Poff says he is surprised and not at the same time. Halfway through recording the album, the band knew they had an interesting hook to get music and tech lovers to talk.
“I think there are a ton of people that have been experimenting with it but at the same time there are a lot of easier ways to make a record than we did it,” Poff said.
The band primarily used iPhone applications such as FourTrack, MultiTrack DAW, AmpKit and ThumbJam. GuitarJack allowed the band members to record their music by plugging in real instruments and microphones to an iPhone.
While on the road in the U.S., The Gorillaz also spent time recording an album on the iPad as sort of a music diary. The 88 also recorded popular hit “Love is the Thing” on the iPhone using FourTrack.