CREDO TRACK-BY-TRACK GUIDE
Never Let Me Go
Dean Honer (Producer); The demo was pretty different from the finished track. It only had the one verse which was repeated. All the vocals on the demo were by Philip and Rob, Jo and Susan were not on the track. Most of the vocal melodies remained pretty much as they were from demo to finish. The arrangement got cut and pasted about in the development process.
I think most of the music from the original demo got discarded along the way, in fact I dont know if any of the recorded demo parts appear on the finished track! Maybe some of the "OOoh! backing vocals from Philip and Rob?
After Jarrod had done his polishing and production process and produced a reworked version, we gave this new version to the band, they liked it (phew!) and then they decided to get Susan and Jo to sing the whole song together rather than it being a Philip lead vocal.
They then recorded the new vocals at their studio and sent them to us. The last stage of the production was fitting the new vocals into the arrangement and spicing up some of the sounds. We thought it sounded good with Susan singing the verses and Jo on the bridges then both of them together on the choruses.
We used Pitch and Warp in Cubase to change some of the melodies slightly and to give the"tuned" vocal effect. They are not "Auto-Tuned". Its all done manually word by word, syllable by syllable. Using the tuned effect seemed to make the lyric harder and colder which we quite liked.
We also replaced a lot of the plug in synths that Jarrod had used for his demo, with real analogue synths. The verse bassline was made using my Oakley modular synth, fantastic, British built machine. Bridge bass is Minimoog. Chorus synths are Oberheim 2 Voice, Minimoog and a bit of twinkly Oscar.
The stabby chords are a mixture of Minimonsta plug in and Roland JX8P a very 80's sounding machine. There is also quite a lot of MS20 noises and whooshes on there. Drum sounds are a mixture, a lot of Fairlight 2 percussion sounds, a classic Human League "Dare" era Linn LM1 Snare, one of our own kik samples.
Nick Burke (Band member); I came up with a melody over an instrumental track in this case. The next time I heard the song was post production and a section of my part had emerged as a vocal melody. I thought it was a clever writing technique on I Monster's part but it may have been written in before that stage as far as I know. I sound like Manuel from 'Faulty Towers' - "I know NO-THEENG".
Mike Marsh (Master engineer); Used quieter drums mix and needed midrange EQ and some low freq adding, along with some compressing.
Jarrod Gosling; Again a single. This was the first single. Many mixes and tweaks were done here. This one had to appeal to the clubbers. Quite different to 'Never Let Me Go' and 'Sky'. I love the lyrics BTW.
Dean Honer; We received the files of the demo in February. At this time it already had the fast gnarly bassline in place, the main Night People repeated vocal and also the crazy verse vocals, which were originally Philip only but with a different bass line underneath.The girls Gentle Lighting part was also in place but was more of a drop down middle 8 section.
After trying out some ideas on the track we stripped down the rhythm and tried to hang the track around the great bass line. We put a new bass line under the verse vocals and a more uplifting bass and synth part under the girls middle 8. We also threw in a new synth riff at the end over which Philip then wrote the "Get Away" section.
It was a case of us doing a bit of fiddling at our studio then sending it to the band to either say "thats rubbish"or "thats great", then they would do a bit more fiddling and send it back to us and so on......
Night People probably
involved the most fiddling and sending back and forth out of all the
tracks on the album.
On Night People the intro noise is my EMS Synthi AKS. The SE1 bass line is doubled up with a Minimoog sub bass. There are some quiet MS20 parts on the verses and a Minimoog lead line. Some fruity Pro One sweeps on the drop down. The fat end section Bassline is a Pro One doubled with a Minimoog. The end rave chords are actually a Korg MS20 plug in. Drums are a mixture of our own samples, Linn LM1 samples and Philips Pearl Syncussion drum pads.
Nick Burke; Night People is so much fun to play live, the 'gang vocal' really makes me feel part of the group in a strange way - I suppose it comes down to having the same belief in the statement myself and relating to the sentiment of the song.
Mike Marsh; Used both Main Vocal Mix and Vocal Up Mix and edited between the two to maintain best vocal level. Added high frequency EQ, some low freq and some compressing. Also worked on the Radio Edit in readiness for single release.
Spotting hit potential is particularly difficult these days. There was a whole album's worth of demos. Some more evolved than others. 'Sky' stood out from day one. That was the "hit", in my ears, ie, it's a bloody good song, and classic League.
Sky demo sounded good already, the chorus
hook was great. The
vocal structure was pretty much complete. Verses, bridges and choruses same as on album. A few lyric changes.
New 2nd verse added later I think. Just Philip singing. We worked a lot on the rhythm and bass line on this track, we were kind of influenced by Dare era sounds I think. Kind of a Don't You Want Me style bass line and Linn drums.
The songs intro is Philips original Jupiter 6 melody plus some Mellotron strings that we added. the song. The bass is my Minimoog Model D. The drums are a mixture of Linn LM1 samples and some of our own sounds.
The strings on the bridge are from my Godwin String Concert string machine. The Popcorn style sounds on the verses are from my Roland Promars. There are also some Sequential Pro One FX running through.
Mike Marsh; From the moment I heard it and throughout the session we had when mastering the album it always stood out to me as the best track! Technically it was the best track too! Used Vocal Up mix along with a bit of high frequency EQ and low freq EQ and a bit of subtle compressing. This track was the best sounding mix in its initial form.
Into The Night
Jarrod Gosling; This one didn't prove to be too much like hard work. I thought this was interesting, in that it sounded quite different to typical League. The songwriting I mean.
Mike Marsh; Used main vocal mix and opened up mix with high frequency EQ along with some additional low freq EQ.
Jarrod Gosling; This one was the first one that I initially worked on at my place. We kept the trancey synth line that runs through the chorus, which was on the demo. I love what Susan and Joanne did on this. That wasn't on the demo, but it really adds a lot to the song.
Mike Marsh; I actually thought lots of the tracks stood out and potentially there could be quite a few singles from this album. Immediately obvious ones to me though were Night People, Sky, Egomaniac and Electric Shock. Used main vocal mix and opened up mix with high frequency EQ and a little midrange EQ along with some compressing.
Jarrod Gosling;; A lesser track I think. The original version that we worked on had a completely different chorus, which had very 'Dare' like properties.
Mike Marsh; Used quieter drums normal vocals mix, added some high frequency EQ, some low freq EQ and some compressing.
Jarrod Gosling; A companion piece to 'Night People'. A clubbier track. I love the vocal break that Susan and Joanne sing in the middle. Reminds me of Buggles for some reason! Which, in my book, is a good thing. A quirky moment, which is important when a track is very linear.
Used “Philips’ girls
vox down mix” along with a bit of high frequency EQ and some
Jarrod Gosling; An early favourite for many of us. A good one to work on, as it's such a great song. This one, out of all of the Credo tracks, sounds the most like something from the Dare-Hysteria era.
Dean Honer; There were certain (demo) tracks that jumped out immediately, Get Together sounded very strong.
Mike Marsh; Used vocal main mix along with a bit of high frequency EQ and some compressing.
Jarrod Gosling; The most Mark I sounding track on the album. Lots of old synths on here. This was the closest to the Mark I sound we'd dare go (pun intended).
Mike Marsh; Used vocal main mix along with larger amount of high frequency EQ as this mix was a bit duller than the others! Also some gentle compressing.
Breaking The Chains
Jarrod Gosling; Nicky played a great synth guitar line on the demo of this. We decided to throw that it in as an intro to the song and make more of it and I think it really works. I recorded some Mellotron right at the end. A first for The Human League!
Nick Burke; I made it (the guitar riff) up on the fly as I listened to the demo track while Philip and Rob's eyes slowly glazed over. It was meant to be a nod towards the John Hughes soundtrack-esque vibe on the Ladyhawke album (that I love) and to be honest I think it was more about the tone of the guitar synth getting in there as it is such a weird noise. It was more of an incidental part on the demo, rather than it's more prominent position in the finished version.
Mike Marsh; Used quieter drums mix along with a bit of high frequency EQ and some compressing.
Stars Start To Shine
Mike Marsh; Used main vocal mix, added some high frequency and mid-range EQ. Also added some low-mid EQ and used a bit of compression.