Our Experience Recording at the EnsombeRoom.

“Can’t Put Your Arms Around a Memory” (cover) Download!

Photo By: Geoff Montgomery

Several weeks ago, the Elkys met on the edge of town to start work on the next official release. The song in question was the cover of “Can’t put your Arms Around a Memory” written by famed musician/ notorious junkie, Johnny Thunders. The girls are retiring it from the set and wanted to document the sound before they put it away.

The studio is in the basement of an unassuming home near the I-69 interchange. Head engineer, Geoff Montgomery operates a digital shop with a large multi-input digital console. There are racks of external effects processors just in case more signal processing is called for. The main room has a central drum area what Jackie set up her kit and the rest of the musicians arranged themselves in a half circle with their instruments in separate rooms. Geoff quickly dialed in a headphone mix and just like that, the session started.

They song went down easily owing to the fact that the Elkys have been playing it at practices and shows for almost a year. Initialy Kay had wanted to overdub a string section but no one new any string players.  A small coronet was procured for the orchestration. Oona provided her signature background vocals and warm Farfisa tones and an acoustic guitar was added for extra body. Jana’s bass was plugged directly into the system for maximum sonic fidelity.

When all was said and done, the song was in the can before they had even reached the halfway point. After some quick math it was determined that it was more cost effective to stay and record for the day-rate than leave.  Two more songs were selected and the process resumed with “Hard Lesson” and “Uncivil War”. After initial tracking was done, a food run was planned. Unlike Detroit, which was obsessed with ham, the ladies found some burritos to power the final hours. All except for Kay who ate only  jelly beans on a reward system.