Monday, March 29, 1999
Rick Wakeman Mixes Latest Album in Dolby Surround
Composer and keyboard virtuoso Rick Wakeman has recorded and mixed his new album “Return to the Centre of the Earth” at CTS Studios in London, UK. Released in mid-March on EMI Classics, the album features the London Symphony Orchestra and The English Chamber Choir, both recorded in CTS Studio 1, with many of the project�s featured vocalists being recorded in Studio 2. The project includes narration by Patrick Stewart and was mixed in Dolby Surround in CTS Studio 2, using the room�s AMS-Neve Capricorn digital console.
Reflecting on the concept of Wakefield�s 25 year old “Journey to the Centre of the Earth,” “Return to the Centre of the Earth” is based entirely on fresh material and exploits the progress in music and recording technology since Wakeman�s 1974 album. “Return to the Center of the Earth” was engineered by James Collins and assisted by CTS engineer Erik Jordan and it was recorded 96-track digital on dual Sony 3348 recorders.
Rick Wakeman says of the work at CTS, �I am very fond of CTS and have been working there for many years�ever since the late 1960s, in fact�also recording film scores there, including �White Rock�. James Collins, Erik Jordan, and I understood each other very well and worked together as a team…James and Erik had a refreshing �we�ll fix it now� attitude, rather than the more common �we�ll fix it in the mix,� and we worked carefully through the �tweak� lists I had prepared.�
James Collins commented on the Capricorn console, saying �The Capricorn proved perfect for this type of project�the ability to set up real-time pans and EQ changes was especially useful. It takes longer to rewind the tape than to reset the console, and whilst EMI wanted this album mixed to Dolby Surround, it would be very straightforward to remix it for 5.1, if required in the future. The Sony 3348s were interfaced direct to the desk by MADI links, and we recorded the mix to 1/2� analogue, using the new Quantegy GP9 high-level tape running at 15ips with Dolby SR.�
“Return to the Centre of the Earth” is due for USA release in April. For more information on CTS Studios Limited, visit their Web Site at