Recording, lasers and up, up & away. / by petergregson

As I type, I'm on my way home after recording some delicious solo Max Richter music at the equally tasty Air Studios in Hampstead. It's a terrific end to what has been a solid cellotastic 3-4 weeks!
First up, I was in Snape collaborating with composer Tod Machover, ambisonic sound designer Ben Bloomberg and UnitedVisualArtists. It was a truly herculean project, including a TEDx event, 15hr days and enough haze to cause a few evacuations from the studio.
It was the first time I'd sat in an enchanted forest of 8ft tall LED towers, lasers and a 20 channel audio system. Hopefully it won't be the last!
It was incredible, and the audiences at Aldeburgh and Kings Place seem to have agreed! The work we created, "Spheres and Splinters", was a 20min tour-de-force, making me suitably exhausted about three times a day.
I managed to counterbalance this with a lot of fruity teas and a good level of Rihanna on the iPod. Try it, it's magic.

After that, it was a quick hurtle north to Glasgow to support Hauschka on his all powerful world tour. We were playing at Oran Mor, which was a smashing venue (with, apparently, 250 different types of whisky in the building). Tired but happy, I returned to Edinburgh to prepare for a show the next night, playing once more at the fabulous Ingleby Gallery.
Rather than supporting another musician, which I did the night before and have done a few times before that, I was supporting a visual artists: James Hugonin. I've talked about him before - his stuff is just so beautiful, I'm amazed each time I see it.

I was asked to programme a short concert then join James in conversation about the influence of music on his work, and the influence of his work on my musical choices. It was a really amazing audience: there was deathly silence during Morton Feldman's "Intersection IV", the end of the programme, which was so tense that it was almost uncomfortable to get up and bow.

A few runs of "Vocal" in Air 1 choosing the best mic combo and the least ridiculous reverb, and the lights went down and we recorded it. Jake Jackson worked his usual magic in the control room; can't wait to play it to you!

My usual meeting regime resumes tomorrow, so that'll be nice...in a way. A slight cello break for a week before MediaCamp Nottingham then a few concerts (and TEDxAlcatraz) in San Francisco!