Recording Studio Sweet Spot — 440 Sound Studios, Woodlawn Park, NJ
September 30, 2012 by David Weiss
There’s no shortage of surprises in the Garden State.
One of the dopest discoveries there is 440 Sound Studios, a revitalized room where an SSL 4000 G resides within a George Augspurger-designed control center. Meanwhile, 1500 sq. ft. of live space and an upbeat pulse attract everyone from Junior Sanchez and Wiz Khalifa to DMC.
Put the pieces together, and you get an audio haven far greater than the sum of its parts. It all adds up to 440.
Facility Name: 440 Sound Studios
Location: Woodlawn Park, NJ
Neighborhood Advantages: Our studio is in the center of a musically rich environment: an industrial park shared with several rehearsal and post production facilities, in close proximity to several notable venues, music stores and great food. It is a 15-minute ride from midtown Manhattan, and easily accessible from most transit lines.
Date of Birth: 440 Sound Studios officially opened in April of this year, but the space has been a recording studio since the late ’90’s. The current owner acquired the space in 2010, and in late 2011 underwent intense renovations improving on both mix rooms and tracking space.
Facility Focus: We are a full-service facility catering towards the needs of our clients. Anything and everything from tracking, to editing and mixing, to full service songwriting and production.
Mission Statement: To provide our clientele with top-notch sound and service, but more importantly a realization of their artistic vision.
Clients/Credits: Junior Sanchez, Wiz Khalifa, DMC, Don Kincaid, Carlos McKinney, Marcos Carnival, David Kowalski, Will Lewis, The Vettes, Caté, Dive, Enemy of Everyone, Alex Plus, Any Time Today, the Glickman Bassoon Ensemble and members of the New York Philharmonic.
Key Personnel: Owner/ Producer Anthony Sabbatino; Manager/ Chief Engineer Steve Kolakowsky; Engineers Kerry Pompeo, Alex Pareja, Davy Lee Marrero and Joey Palmieri.
System Highlights: Room A: SSL 4000 G+ w/ Ultimation; outboard from Rupert Neve, Amek, API, Chandler, Empirical Labs, Burl, Manley, Lexicon & Eventide among many others. Monitoring includes Augspurger Custom Mains, Focal, Barefoot, Dynaudio, Avantone and Yamaha selections. Avid HDX2; Avid HD, Apogee, Antelope and Crane Song convertors, Antelope Rubidium Atomic clocking; Pro Tools 10, Logic and Ableton. Plugin suites from Waves, Avid, Antares, UAD, Sony.
Room B: D&R Triton, Tannoy, Focal and Yamaha monitoring; Dangerous, Avalon, True Systems and Lexicon outboard. Pro Tools 10, Logic, Ableton. Avid HD Native with Digidesign 192 convertors.
Instruments include a Kawai 7ft 6in grand piano, Keyboards by Nord, Yamaha, Korg, Roland, Dave Smith and Kurzweil; Palmetto, Tama, Gretsch and Yamaha drums; Gibson, Fender, Martin and Taylor guitars and basses; and amplifiers from Orange, Marshall, Fender, EVH, Bogner, Ampeg and Mesa Boogie.
Complement of mics from Neumann, Bock, Royer, Blue, Chameleon Labs, AKG, Earthworks, Sennheiser and Shure.
Distinguishing Characteristics: George Augspurger-designed control rooms, tuned by Bob Hodas; 1500 square feet of tracking rooms with various sonic characteristics. Enough outboard, mics, monitors, amps and instruments to please almost every palette. O yea, and a sweet lounge.
The building is on fire, you only have time to grab ONE thing to save, what is it? It would be a tossup between our one-button grind-and-brew coffee maker and the limited edition AC/DC pinball machine.
Rave Reviews: The Vibe. Clients are always remarking about the positive energy that flows through our rooms.
Most Memorable Session Ever: What was supposed to be a one-hour overdub session, turned into a four-hour music history lesson provided by the King of Rock, DMC himself.
Session You’d Like to Forget: I wouldn’t want to forget any of them. It seems like the worse they were, the better the learning experiences. (Aside from the day our talkback mic wouldn’t unlatch; I’d like to forget that one.)
Dream Session: To produce the song that someone might someday want to call their dream session.
– Anthony Sabbatino is Owner/Producer of 440 Sound Studios.