When British rock star Peter Gabriel took his profits from his big hit album So twenty-five years ago using them to convert an old English mill into a first class studio, the audio world was knocked out. Real World Studios’ location is steeped in all sorts of English history. It’s not far from Stonehenge and the city of Bath (settled by the Romans). Over the last few years Gabriel has been working with a contemporary classical composer and arranger named John Metcalfe. You might have seen Peter a couple of years ago performing in a crossover concert with a full symphony orchestra (New Blood Orchestra). Metcalfe is the composer who scored and arranged all of PG’s music for orchestra. BTW, hats off to John Metcalfe for keeping the schmaltz out of the charts.
Recently, John has put out his own release of modern classical music in a quartet and quintet configuration. It’s got a cutting edge touch and minimalist feel that’s anchored in the chamber music tradition of old (Beethoven and Mendelssohn). He’s really come up with a winner. This video shows one of the new pieces (Copper Beech) actually being recorded at Real World Studios with John Metcalfe producing the session as we watch him marking-up his score in real time. It’s state of the art classical going down in a modern studio with top notch players,
(The Carducci Quartet along with Matthew Barley).
A fascinating look as we watch this musical flower
unfold in this old mill that has been turned into an audio factory.
Enjoy being a fly on the studio wall as you witness take #4: