I am the guitarist, bassist, and VST programmer for Room 404, and a mixing and mastering engineer from Duluth, Minnesota. I specialize in heavy metal and rock music, running Cubase 8.5 as my DAW.
I play all instruments in two projects: One is a progressive/alternative metal band, Room 404, which will release an EP entitled A World Turned Upside Down this June; the other is a drone/ambient/electronic project called [vlrs.aaiia]. I also engineered each of my projects, recording, mixing, and mastering everything, and I wish to lend a hand towards other musicians in need of mixing and/or mastering services. I currently use Cubase 8.5 as my DAW.
My masters are usually quieter than most commercial recordings with Room 404's A World Turned Upside Down clocking at a DR8 on average. While technology has improved over the dreadful mid-2000s years, I still prefer to keep my mixes quiet.
I hold a Bachelors of Arts in Music from the College of St. Scholastica. I perform classical and electric guitars, bass, and percussion.
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Interview with Harry Park
Q: Analog or digital and why?
A: Digital, but that is because I have little-to-no experience with analog methods. I feel that recording, mixing, and mastering in the box is more practical for me; easier to edit or correct certain parts. I would like to learn more about analog recording in the future.
Q: What do you like most about your job?
A: Music is my passion and it feels good seeing all of the intricacies of certain parts fall into place.
Q: How would you describe your style?
A: I tend to focus more on getting an overall mid-ranged tone that does not have too much ear-piercing treble or muddy bass. I try to go for a raw approach without overdoing certain parts.
Q: What are you working on at the moment?
A: My own project, Room 404's debut EP, A World Turned Upside Down. I am also working on remixing a track for the Fencepost Reclamation project.
Q: What questions do you ask prospective clients?
A: I would ask them if they have any ideas on how they want their music to be mixed/mastered. Do you want it to sound bright? Dark? Do you want me to resample the drums? Do you want it to sound natural or exaggerated (i.e. have the kick drum sound like a machine gun)? Do you want me to avoid going into the loudness war?
Q: If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?
A: My computer, Focusrite interface, electric guitar, my TC Electronic Polytune pedal, and a pair of monitor headphones.
Q: What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
A: I am a relatively new person when it comes to this career. However, having finished the debut EP, A World Turned Upside Down, from my project, Room 404, I feel that I am on par with others who have fair experience in this field.
Q: What type of music do you usually work on?
A: Primarily heavy metal and rock music. [vlrs.aaiia] is an electronic project that I would like to have more experience mixing and mastering with.
Q: What's your strongest skill?
A: I have a good sense in how each instrument fits well in the mix. I take into consideration the timbre of the instrument, the way it sounds acoustically, and try to replicate that in the mix.
Q: What do you bring to a song?
A: I want to bring out the best elements in a song. If there is an instrument that pops out or shines out, I want to have it heard well. At the same time, I want to take into consideration other instruments and have all of them be clearly heard in the recording.
Q: What's your typical work process?
A: I typically take into consideration what genre the music I am mixing is in and what elements really pop out in it. I have a tendency to start working immediately after either everything is recorded or if I get the files for mixing. I tend to work non-stop on a mix to the point where it has become an addiction.
Q: Tell us about your studio setup.
A: It is pretty minimal. I run everything in the box with Cubase 8.5 and I usually record with amp simulations for guitars and bass. I typically use EZdrummer for drum programming or drum replacement, though I am planning on investing in Superior Drummer soon.
Q: What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?
A: Steven Wilson is one musician and producer that made me consider a career in both music making and music production - Room 404 is practically a homage to Steven Wilson's work, specifically Porcupine Tree and Blackfield. In recent years, the professionals that solidified my interest in mixing/mastering are Joey Sturgis, Jens Borgen, Mark Lewis, Jason Suecof, Ryan "Fluff" Bruce, Michael Keene, and Ken Sorceron.
Q: Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.
A: My primary expertise focuses on mixing and mastering recordings. I have some experience in recording music, but it is, as of May 2017, always from my own projects, though I may lend some assistance in recording if they are in the same area I am in (Duluth).