IASPM 2014: Recording the Musical Underworld: John Loder’s Southern Sonic Style

Recording the Musical Underworld: John Loder’s Southern Sonic Style

Southern Studios in 2012, featuring much of the original equipment (engineer Harvey Birrell pictured).

Samantha Bennett, Australian National University

Recording has always been a means of social control, a stake in politics, regardless of the available technologies. – Jacques Attali

I got in touch with John Loder and said, ‘How about us doing a demo?’ and he said, ‘Well, I’ll get an 8-track.’ – Penny Rimbaud

ABSTRACT: In recent years, fora such as The Art of Record Production and scholars including Albin Zak, Mark Cunningham, Greg Milner and David Morton have made significant progress in filling the scholarly void existing between popular music performance and reception. Socio-cultural and analytical works on sound production practice[s] have, however, reinforced a ‘recordist canon’, prioritising the work of 1950s and 1960s pop and rock recordists. However, little acknowledgement has been afforded to the work of later recordists, particularly those working in non-mainstream music[s].