NFTFH = Not For The Faint Hearted. Mixing for stereo / surround 3D / binaural / ambisonics formats.
With 30+ years experience in music recording and mixing, Patrice is also a seasoned columnist and equipment reviewer for several pro-audio magazines in France, especially « Keyboards-Recording Home Studio » and « Hors-Phase » for which he wrote dozens of columns since 1994.
Also a professional web developer since 1999, mainly for music business clients including major record companies and music stores, but also for law firms as he holds a degree in business law, with a special interest in intellectual property and contracts.
Finally, he's in charge of the Music Business courses at the Abbey Road Institute France and teaches contracts law, web ergonomics and gives annual lectures about the future of the music and internet business at the Parisian division of the School of Audio Engineering (SAE).
I'd love to hear about your project. Click the 'Contact' button above to get in touch.
4 Reviews - 1 Repeat ClientEndorse Patrice Lazareff
Patrice produced me again a beautiful quality mix. Always a pleasure to work with this nice person, a great professional.
Patrice is very professional, helpful and collaborative. A great mix engineer.
Definitely will use his knowledge and skill again in the future :)
I had the opportunity to work with Patrice Lazareff on compositions he's an extremely competent person, he listens. I really hope to have the chance to work with him again.
Exceptional professionalism and patience with great discretion. Thank you for all these precious collaborations.
Interview with Patrice Lazareff
Q: Tell us about your studio setup.
A: Actually it's a dual setup. On the one hand, there's the mixing room that has been designed for critical surround monitoring, hence the choice of Focal monitors, Merging Technologies converter and Dangerous Music monitoring management and all cabled with Mogami. The selection of plugins was made with the same uncompromising spirit. On the other hand, there is a portable setup comprising a laptop, the Merging Technologies Horus interface and a selection of DPA, Telefunken and other microphones for capturing live acoustic events, also in surround of course.
Q: What's your typical work process?
A: I love taking my time and mixing in surround is slightly more time-consuming than simple stereo as it requires more thinking ahead. Every element of the mix, position, effects, eq, etc. must really be fine tuned throughout the track, not only for the surround mix itself but also for stereo compatibility, which must be checked at all time. This is why I will mostly listen to a song during the first day, maybe making a few edits to limit tricky pan automations later on, setup eq and compression and call it a day. Then, the fx settings, reverbs, delays and modulations and then automation, often lots of it as surround offers far more fun than stereo.
Q: What type of music do you usually work on?
A: In my 30+ years in studio, I came across almost all types but now I confess a clear preference for music based mostly on acoustic or electro-acoustic elements. In other words, the more microphones, the merrier ;-)
Q: What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?
A: To make sure that the track is indeed ready for mixing. Meaning that everything is correct time and tune wise and that all the artistic decisions the team could make are final. That being said, there is always room for constructive talk...
Q: What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
A: I started in 1984 in a recording studio attached to a music store where I was in charge of the keyboards and midi equipment. Then moved to London in 1988 at Roundhouse Studios, then Paris in 1990 where the Studios Davout became my second home for a decade or so. I started a first sourround dedicated studio in 2005 up until 2009, but the industry was not ready, too afraid by the filesharing they could not and still have not understood. Now there is a clear move towards higher audio quality that led me to start this new studio.
Q: What questions do you ask prospective clients?
A: Technical details aside, I like to hear about the story behind the song or album. It helps me finding the right overall color and space of the track. I also pay a lot of attention to the lyrics, the instruments must tell the same story.
Q: Analog or digital and why?
A: [laughter] Full digital — period. You see, I'm not young. The all analog warmth, presence, bla-bla, I've been there, done that. It's not that it wasn't great but honestly, we just had no choice. I remember too well mixing 48 tracks with two Studer synchronized with a Lynx module. Never again. The outboard? Great sounding, my a$$. Not two devices with the same sound, even when serial numbers follow, noisy, unreliable. Most people I see now that are for the "all analog" were teenagers in the early 1990's. When they discovered and got passionate about music, it is true that they had the worse of what digital could be. But now, with 64bits floating point summing, DXD, DSD, analog is just not relevant anymore IF, and that's a big IF, you know what you are doing AND you know the sound you want to build. I've had all the outboard of dreams in my hands, I know what they do and I don't need them anymore to reproduce that.
Q: Can you share one music production tip?
A: Make decisions on the spot, do not use technology to delay. If what you've just added actually adds something to your track, keep it. If not, be merciless and delete it.