For years I have been practicing the craft of engineering and music production. Starting from a Tascam 4-track and progressing to world class studios. Focused on unique sounds and what great music has to offer the artist and the listener. Recently I have been working with Ron Nevison, producer of Led Zeppelin, Bad Company, The Who, etc.
Born and raised in Portland, OR, Matt is a freelance audio engineer that has always had a passion for music. Playing in bands since the age of 12, his curiosity in recording grew after listening to artists like Radiohead, Bjork and Nine Inch Nails and wondered how they created such unique and exciting sounds.
After completing both analog and digital recording programs, he began to record all types of music from rock to reggae, hip-hop to hardcore. With over 12 years of engineering experience, he has worked with many well established bands, in addition to artists just starting out. Always taking the time to help each project reach their full potential. Matt believes that working with an experienced engineer is the key to working quickly and creatively.
Adding to his audio toolkit, Matt has been a significant part of the Banana Stand Media team. Helping to document Portlands ever growing and evolving music identity. He has done it all, from remote recording, FOH, engineering, mixing, and mastering.
Presently he not only regularly works with legendary producer Ron Nevison (The Who, Led Zeppelin, Heart, etc.) but offers full production from his home studio (Ivy League Recording), and several other studios to fit each artists vibe and needs. Matt also keeps active playing in local bands, The Hague and Maita.
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Interview with Matthew Thomson
Q: Analog or digital and why?
A: Both, always. Each provides its own sonic character to promote a feeling.
Q: What type of music do you usually work on?
A: All sorts of rock, mainly with vocals. Alt. Punk, Math Rock, Indie/ Pop, Country/ Folk, Alt. Rock, Chamber/ Pop, Emo, Hardcore, etc.
Q: What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?
A: Love your music, emotion is what people connect with.
Q: What do you like most about your job?
A: To live a life in order to help create lasting and impactful music.
Q: What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?
A: Bands that break conventions of their genre and push themselves creatively and musically. Neil Young, St. Vincent, Thrice, Radiohead, Blonde Redhead, Bjork, Of Montreal, MIA, Cat Power, David Bazan.
Q: Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.
A: Independent artists and bands
Q: What's the biggest misconception about what you do?
A: That there is a magic bullet that makes records sound awesome. It takes thousands of positive decisions from the song writing stage through tracking and mixing to put together a great record.
Q: Tell us about a project you worked on you are especially proud of and why. What was your role?
A: Working with Noah Kite was a long and involved project giving me opportunities to record new and different instruments, while involving complex editing and sound design aspects I rarely get to use.
Q: Tell us about your studio setup.
A: Pro Tools 10/11 and Logic Pro X. UA Apollo, DBX 560a, UAD Quad, NS-10s, JBL LSR4328P, Waves and Slate Digital Plug-in Bundles.
Q: How would you describe your style?
A: Honest and aggressive.
Q: What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
A: I've been working in audio for nearly 20 years, professionally for over twelve.
Q: If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?
A: Solar battery pack, UA apollo, Sm7b, Sennheiser hd280s, and laptop.
Q: What questions do you ask prospective clients?
A: Be prepared and open to change. Collaboration and trust is paramount to a great production.
Q: What's your 'promise' to your clients?
A: To treat every project like it was my own. Putting full effort into bringing each element to its potential.
Q: Is there anyone on SoundBetter you know and would recommend to your clients?
A: Ron Nevison