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Revolting Cocks production techniques
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> Production Techniques  
Author Revolting Cocks production techniques
rico loverde
I've been obsessed with the revolting cocks stuff from the late eighties. Would love to know what was going on production wise besides massive amounts of speed, heroin, and LSD...

Especially interested in Paul Barkers bass sound, Chris Connellys / Al Jourgensons vocals, and synth stuff.

On songs like:
Get down, Something Wonderful,In the neck, No devotion, Sergio (newer than the rest) etc etc

Also what does Ogre use for his vocals?

Thanks guys...
ringstone
Not sure on vocal production technique but apparently a shitty Kawai R100 drum machine is essential for that drum sound hihi

Cheers
Blair
Spanningtree
Really like the Revolting Cocks. No Devotion is one of my fav bits out there.
rico loverde
ringstone wrote:
Not sure on vocal production technique but apparently a shitty Kawai R100 drum machine is essential for that drum sound hihi

Cheers
Blair
Thanks Blair!
rico loverde
Spanningtree wrote:
Really like the Revolting Cocks. No Devotion is one of my fav bits out there.
such an amazing song, it's been on repeat all day today. Check this video out of it with Ogre singing

Nelson Baboon
ah - so good.
Nelson Baboon
fuck. mesmerized by this. LOVE that vocal processing, among other things.
rico loverde
Nelson Baboon wrote:
fuck. mesmerized by this. LOVE that vocal processing, among other things.
It gives me chills.
Nelson Baboon
fantastic.

you know, I don't have any of their records. is there one is should get first. Damn, that was so, so good.
Spanningtree
rico loverde wrote:
Spanningtree wrote:
Really like the Revolting Cocks. No Devotion is one of my fav bits out there.
such an amazing song, it's been on repeat all day today. Check this video out of it with Ogre singing



Fucking brilliant!!
thetwlo
Publison and Fairlight, i think(?) Vocals, no idea. Classic.
rico loverde
Nelson Baboon wrote:
fantastic.

you know, I don't have any of their records. is there one is should get first. Damn, that was so, so good.
check out "Big sexy land" and "beers,steers, and queers"

The song below is off Big Sexy Land
Pentachoron
Nelson Baboon wrote:
fantastic.

you know, I don't have any of their records. is there one is should get first. Damn, that was so, so good.


I believe “Big Sexy Land” was the first, and an excellent, Revco LP, and “Beers, Steers and Queers” was the last one I remember being truly solid and essential (and I think that one also had a few vocal performances by Ogre as well). After that what I heard seemed to quickly slide into mediocrity and self-parody.

If nothing else, these strongest Revolting Cocks tracks pretty much prove “song” writing ability, instrument proficiency, and youthful abandon and near-indestructibility pretty much almost always trump and transcend an extensive, or meager electronic instrument collection.

Be sure to give a listen to Paul Barker’s solo project, Lead Into Gold, as well.
computer controlled
The Beers, Steers and Queers remixes are the highlight of RevCo's output. The live album, You Goddamn Son of a Bitch is essential as well. There's a video of it, but good luck finding it! Liger Fickin' Good is pretty decent as well. Their cover of Do Ya Think I'm Sexy is brilliant.

Al was big user of the Fairlight, and a lot of the drum sounds came from that. I'm not sure what drum sounds Bill Rieflin uses. He lives in Seattle, so i ever run into him, i'm gonna ask =o]

According to Luc Van Acker, vocal processing on We Shall Cleanse The World was an AMS Reverb (non-lin) + Ibanez tubesreamer. So that was probably the same as the rest of the Big Sexy Land material as well.

Its a RevCo world!
tokyocat
Chris Connelly wrote a book about his time with Ministry and Revolting Cocks. I haven't read it but it's supposed to have some chapters about the recording sessions.

You could also try asking the Malekko guys, Paul Barker is/was working with them...
rico loverde
tokyocat wrote:
Chris Connelly wrote a book about his time with Ministry and Revolting Cocks. I haven't read it but it's supposed to have some chapters about the recording sessions.

You could also try asking the Malekko guys, Paul Barker is/was working with them...
I read it, its what sparked my interest in all things RevCo again!!! fun read. Ill have to shoot Josh at Malekko an email some day...
tokyocat
The backing track in that Revolting Cocks 'No Devotion' clip you posted sound very similar to this piece by Jean Michel Jarre called 'Wooloomooloo" (from his Zoolook album, released in 1984):

Morley
tokyocat wrote:
The backing track in that Revolting Cocks 'No Devotion' clip you posted sound very similar to this piece by Jean Michel Jarre called 'Wooloomooloo" (from his Zoolook album, released in 1984):



Fairlight Library!
VanEck
As far as vocal processing goes, the Boss SE-70 does a hell of a job replicating that type of industrial sound and pitch shifting and can be found relatively cheap on ebay these days. The delay Ogre used quite often live was a Lexicon PCM-41 with repeat switch for Skinny Puppy, but not sure if that's what is being used for this live performance but sounds like it.
rico loverde
I saw ohgr play the other night, he had a Malekko e616, Malekko 213, and an ISP decimator for his vocal chain
Ranxerox
The R-100 isn't a shitty drum machine; it was in a similar league to the Yamaha RX5 and would have cost quite a bit when th eywere using it.

If you want to make stuff that sounds like Revco, it probably helps to be a drug-fucked genius who likes screaming stuff like 'Suck it and see - salute me!' through a distortion.
ringstone
Ranxerox wrote:
The R-100 isn't a shitty drum machine; it was in a similar league to the Yamaha RX5 and would have cost quite a bit when th eywere using it.

If you want to make stuff that sounds like Revco, it probably helps to be a drug-fucked genius who likes screaming stuff like 'Suck it and see - salute me!' through a distortion.


Unlike the Yamaha machines the R-100 seemed to get a bad reputation for being unrealistic/artificial sounding. Which of course meant that it was far better suited to industrial music rather than mainstream rock/pop.

Of course when the Roland TR-808 and TB-303 were released much the same things were said... if you want to see the R-100 rise to the heights of price those machines go for go ahead and talk it up but I'd much rather see them stay at around the $100 mark lol

Cheers
Blair

Edit: BTW I will add that I have owned Kawai gear and found it to be good quality both soundwise and buildwise but I'm aware of many "serious" muso's who look down their noses at it due to their association with the "home keyboard" side of the market...
Taika-Kim
Oh, it's a band, I first thought this might be wild wink
greydominion
I just got the Kawai drum samples for my MPC, and they're absolute perfect. Also note that the sounds from the Kawai R50e were used a lot for Wax Trax (more electronic/processed sounds and orch hits ;-) ). The sound chip could be swapped to the R100 which had superior memory, indv outs, etc.

Any more suggestions for vocal processing? Could it have been an H3000 or is it all delay manipulation?
plink
greydominion wrote:
I just got the Kawai drum samples for my MPC, and they're absolute perfect. Also note that the sounds from the Kawai R50e were used a lot for Wax Trax (more electronic/processed sounds and orch hits ;-) ). The sound chip could be swapped to the R100 which had superior memory, indv outs, etc.

Any more suggestions for vocal processing? Could it have been an H3000 or is it all delay manipulation?


I saw a Ministry show from behind the mixing boards in ~1996 (Filth Pig era), and it was all Eventide from what I could tell. And it was spot-on, a real thing of beauty.
sb
The clanking percussion loop that runs through No Devotion is sampled from the first track on SPK's Zamia Lehmani album. ...Just thought I'd add that :-)
newgreyarea
Love Paul's bass sound! Ministry's Cannibal Song.
One of my faves!

Both "You Goddamned Son of A Bitch" and "In Case You Didn't Feel Like Showing Up" are excellent live vids/discs. . . . . if you can find them. The latter is on Spotify. Not much for Revco on there though.


Also, David J, Hooky, Dave Allen and whoever played bass for the Cure in the 80's/Early 90's (I feel like they had a couple of peeps. Look it up later.)
Love it!!!

All I have is a Sansamp Bass Driver and my P-Bass. :(
-b
bil_g
While it isn't the vocal effect from No Devotion, I thought this would be worth a mention.

From Tape Op #86 interview with Sanford Parker:

"....I did get to work with this guy Fluffy[Keith Auerbach] - he's the guy who engineered [Ministry's] The Land of Rape and Honey and The Mind is a Terrible Thing to Taste. I learned a lot from him - there's one vocal processing thing I still use today, on every metal record I do.

The Al Jourgensen vocal sound?

Yeah, you take a [dbx] 160 and turn the threshold all the way off, then you turn the ratio all the way down so there's no compression at all, and then turn the output all the way up to where it distorts. Then you send it to another 160, or any other [compressor] - I usually use an [Empirical Labs] Distressor. Then I dial back a reasonable amount [of level] to tape and that's the one I use for my compression. It's cool because you talk into the mic and it sounds completely fine; but as soon as you scream, it starts to hit the output of that 160 and breaks up - to me it just sounds natural."
jimmyedgar
rico loverde wrote:
Spanningtree wrote:
Really like the Revolting Cocks. No Devotion is one of my fav bits out there.
such an amazing song, it's been on repeat all day today. Check this video out of it with Ogre singing



sounds to me like a fake british accent and an eventide harmonizer h910, like the one prince used on the linn drum claps for Vanity Six "Makeup" (around 1:27)

on a modular it would need a delay line with an analog shift register or a pitch shifter in between the feedback

continuum
thetwlo wrote:
Publison and Fairlight, i think(?) Vocals, no idea. Classic.


They sold a few Publison Infernal Machines and Fairlights on eBay several years ago. Everything was suitably trashed.
thetwlo
sb wrote:
The clanking percussion loop that runs through No Devotion is sampled from the first track on SPK's Zamia Lehmani album. ...Just thought I'd add that :-)

Thanks! also, a great album--albeit surprising from SPK at the time. The early RevCo still holds up amazingly well, hard to get tired of it. The You Often Forget 12" is still a favorite.

04tm34l3
monoscan
rico loverde wrote:
I've been obsessed with the revolting cocks stuff from the late eighties. Would love to know what was going on production wise besides massive amounts of speed, heroin, and LSD...

Especially interested in Paul Barkers bass sound, Chris Connellys / Al Jourgensons vocals, and synth stuff.

On songs like:
Get down, Something Wonderful,In the neck, No devotion, Sergio (newer than the rest) etc etc

Also what does Ogre use for his vocals?

Thanks guys...


The Kawai R50e, definitely.

At one point, our last engineer was playing guitar live for Revco before his death. (Jamie Duffy) and we ended up with all of his samples from the Revco set he played at the Wax Trax Retrospectacle. They sound like digital, low bit layered and resampled drum machines. I can try and ask Paul Barker next month when we do Cold Waves with his new band.
felixer
Ranxerox wrote:
The R-100 isn't a shitty drum machine

+1 but it was noisy ... good sounds though. and a lot of them cool sorry i had to sell mine d'oh!
rico loverde
monoscan wrote:
rico loverde wrote:
I've been obsessed with the revolting cocks stuff from the late eighties. Would love to know what was going on production wise besides massive amounts of speed, heroin, and LSD...

Especially interested in Paul Barkers bass sound, Chris Connellys / Al Jourgensons vocals, and synth stuff.

On songs like:
Get down, Something Wonderful,In the neck, No devotion, Sergio (newer than the rest) etc etc

Also what does Ogre use for his vocals?

Thanks guys...


The Kawai R50e, definitely.

At one point, our last engineer was playing guitar live for Revco before his death. (Jamie Duffy) and we ended up with all of his samples from the Revco set he played at the Wax Trax Retrospectacle. They sound like digital, low bit layered and resampled drum machines. I can try and ask Paul Barker next month when we do Cold Waves with his new band.
This was a long time ago...lol. Ive been working at Malekko for the last 5 years so Ive gotten quite close with Paul since writing this. They mainly used Fairlights for the drum and sample stuff. I asked about the R50e/R100's and he was pretty sure they never used those. Ive been lucky to get a lot of really great samples from him. Nothing I could ever share though. Your in for a treat at Coldwaves. The new music from Malekko the band is amazing.
induktor
rico loverde wrote:
monoscan wrote:
rico loverde wrote:
I've been obsessed with the revolting cocks stuff from the late eighties. Would love to know what was going on production wise besides massive amounts of speed, heroin, and LSD...

Especially interested in Paul Barkers bass sound, Chris Connellys / Al Jourgensons vocals, and synth stuff.

On songs like:
Get down, Something Wonderful,In the neck, No devotion, Sergio (newer than the rest) etc etc

Also what does Ogre use for his vocals?

Thanks guys...


The Kawai R50e, definitely.

At one point, our last engineer was playing guitar live for Revco before his death. (Jamie Duffy) and we ended up with all of his samples from the Revco set he played at the Wax Trax Retrospectacle. They sound like digital, low bit layered and resampled drum machines. I can try and ask Paul Barker next month when we do Cold Waves with his new band.
This was a long time ago...lol. Ive been working at Malekko for the last 5 years so Ive gotten quite close with Paul since writing this. They mainly used Fairlights for the drum and sample stuff. I asked about the R50e/R100's and he was pretty sure they never used those. Ive been lucky to get a lot of really great samples from him. Nothing I could ever share though. Your in for a treat at Coldwaves. The new music from Malekko the band is amazing.


I'm super excited to see this and the other acts at cold waves next month! Wax Trax city!
monoscan
rico loverde wrote:
monoscan wrote:
rico loverde wrote:
I've been obsessed with the revolting cocks stuff from the late eighties. Would love to know what was going on production wise besides massive amounts of speed, heroin, and LSD...

Especially interested in Paul Barkers bass sound, Chris Connellys / Al Jourgensons vocals, and synth stuff.

On songs like:
Get down, Something Wonderful,In the neck, No devotion, Sergio (newer than the rest) etc etc

Also what does Ogre use for his vocals?

Thanks guys...


The Kawai R50e, definitely.

At one point, our last engineer was playing guitar live for Revco before his death. (Jamie Duffy) and we ended up with all of his samples from the Revco set he played at the Wax Trax Retrospectacle. They sound like digital, low bit layered and resampled drum machines. I can try and ask Paul Barker next month when we do Cold Waves with his new band.
This was a long time ago...lol. Ive been working at Malekko for the last 5 years so Ive gotten quite close with Paul since writing this. They mainly used Fairlights for the drum and sample stuff. I asked about the R50e/R100's and he was pretty sure they never used those. Ive been lucky to get a lot of really great samples from him. Nothing I could ever share though. Your in for a treat at Coldwaves. The new music from Malekko the band is amazing.


From our shared experiences with so many awesome bands in the industrial scene, I've been fortunate enough to bug bands that were heroes to my influential teens. I think the drum machines themselves were less important than the use of the Fairlight afterwards. All these drum samples sound like they had reverb on and were very hot going into a sampler, were repitched / layered to be thicker but were still those sampled digital drum machines in the beginning of the chain.

I was never a big Cabaret Voltaire fan till recently, and comparing their 1987 Code album to say...Ministry's Land of Rape and Honey, you can hear a lot of similar sounds (pitched down plucks as basslines, those probably layered and pitched down kicks and snares, etc) so I'm willing to bet that Fairlight was the biggest factor in their unique sound.

Also, listen to this for shits and giggles. If I was wax trax, I would have offered this drum machine a handshake contract and an option for three side projects https://youtu.be/R5myTDqDQfE
risome
ringstone wrote:
Not sure on vocal production technique but apparently a shitty Kawai R100 drum machine is essential for that drum sound hihi

Cheers
Blair

Nope Fairlight for drums and Al and Orge had some Massenburg gear in the vocal chain.I know because a friend of mine is friends with Chris Connelly.
monoscan
risome wrote:
ringstone wrote:
Not sure on vocal production technique but apparently a shitty Kawai R100 drum machine is essential for that drum sound hihi

Cheers
Blair

Nope Fairlight for drums and Al and Orge had some Massenburg gear in the vocal chain.I know because a friend of mine is friends with Chris Connelly.


We are playing with him (and KMFDM / Ohgr / Pankow / F242) in a couple weeks at Cold Waves! Always fun seeing Chris around.
cretaceousear
And this is why there's nowhere else like MW.
thumbs up
Never heard of Ministry before - I just know a bit of Cabaret Voltaire and a mate who had a Front 242 record, plus a few other bits.

Ministry've really got something on that piece.
Just weird it's all so long ago and they do that Magazine track which must have been ten years old already.
tick tick tick tick
computer controlled
rico loverde wrote:
Nothing I could ever share though.


cry
prscrptn
A friend of mine who worked with them claims their secret to vocals was running JCM900’s in series thumbs up
hyena
sb wrote:
The clanking percussion loop that runs through No Devotion is sampled from the first track on SPK's Zamia Lehmani album. ...Just thought I'd add that :-)


whoah!! never realized it! and Zamia Lehmani is one of my fave albums
great post btw!! following!

(p.s. the Filth Pig album by Ministry is highly underrated or is just my impression? i find it absolutely beautiful in all his decaying charm)
harlequin
The Al Jourgensen vocal sound?[/b]
Yeah, you take a [dbx] 160 and turn the threshold all the way off, then you turn the ratio all the way down so there's no compression at all, and then turn the output all the way up to where it distorts. Then you send it to another 160, or any other [compressor] - I usually use an [Empirical Labs] Distressor. Then I dial back a reasonable amount [of level] to tape and that's the one I use for my compression. It's cool because you talk into the mic and it sounds completely fine; but as soon as you scream, it starts to hit the output of that 160 and breaks up - to me it just sounds natural."[/quote]

Thanks! Gonna try that one.

Alas haven't listened to Ministry for years. So many memories
computer controlled
I've been considering buying the Arturia Fairlight VST to try and get that Adrian Sherwood/Keith LeBlanc/Twitch era sound.

Those drum/percussion sounds!!
felixer
ringstone wrote:

Edit: BTW I will add that I have owned Kawai gear and found it to be good quality both soundwise and buildwise but I'm aware of many "serious" muso's who look down their noses at it due to their association with the "home keyboard" side of the market...

i had an R50 for a while. good sounds but noisy! that's why i sold it at some point. although i do miss it. eg it had a really good chinese cymbal sound.
mome rath
hello, thread that i just fell in love with


filth pig made me than failure of a man that i am today!
whatmeworry
Wow, nostalgia trip!

Now I'm compelled to go dig out my dusty old cd player just to listen to ICYDFLSU. I haven't listened to any RevCo, Lard or Ministry in well over a decade.

Amazing these guys are still around, out there doing their thing.
3hands
Can we, for a moment go back even farther in Ministry’s history to the days of All Day and Halloween?

Can anyone confirm that album was made with little more than a DW8000 and a Fairlight?I’m now thinking out loud, that perhaps Fairlight is all over that album. It’s THAT sound in the overall production. Would WaxTrax simply have purchased the Fairlight and had all of its artists record with it? If that’s the case, how the hell were WaxTrax able to afford one back in the early 80s? Clearly they were a front for a cocoaine operation or something?
joey
the only instrument used on the album was cocaine
induktor
joey wrote:
the only instrument used on the album was cocaine


lol
3hands
joey wrote:
the only instrument used on the album was cocaine



Haha!!!
Miguel606
i love the old Revco sound also, i highly reccommended listening to Chris Conelly's account of all those records on his audio book
https://www.audible.com/pd/Concrete-Bulletproof-Invisible-and-Fried-Au diobook/B00OY9FLOS

its also available as a normal book but i cant imagine that being nearly as good as having him tell the stories directly with his great scottish accent.
brandtrax
I cannot speak to the production workflow - which EQs and compressors were in-line, etc. What I can tell you is the following:

During and after his term on Arista, Al worked out of The Cars' studio in Boston, Syncro Sound. Via Syncro, Al met Perry Geyer and Brian Bothwell. Perry and Brian at some point started a dance/industrial project called Manufacture, which Jourgensen agreed to produce. They traveled to Chicago and recorded the single "Armed Forces" at Chicago Trax with engineer Steve Spapperi.

During the recording, Al copied samples and at least one sequence that Perry and Brian had made for Manufacture. The sequence he copied was subsequently released as Revolting Cocks' "You Often Forget."

I have the original samples to prove this.
onthebandwagon
https://www.loudersound.com/features/al-jourgensen-s-guide-to-drugs
onthebandwagon
Not to de-Pail this thread but this too is a nice little read about Pailhead:

https://www.google.com/amp/s/music.avclub.com/an-unlikely-collaboratio n-produced-pailhead-s-ferocious-1798257625/amp
onthebandwagon
One last things...

No Devotion reminds me of Simple Minds I Travel

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=_6MwzSaBBQY
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