Recording, mixing & mastering

Tom Sibren on SoundBetter

Sound Engine is Tom S. van Iersel. I provide you with (pre-)production, recording and mixing for all genres.

The fact that I’m a musician just like you makes communication go much faster. I can instantly relate to what you have in mind and together we’ll take the steps to get the best out of you. This means that I might push your buttons just to get your energy where it needs to go. I will make sure you will be able to trust me so that you can fully concentrate on your performance.

I mainly work from my own mixing studio but we can work from any other studio you need me to be for bigger recording sessions. Soft- and hardware I use include Avid Pro Tools 11, Slate Digital, Universal Audio, Waves, Kush Audio, Shadow Hills Industries, Neve, Dangerous Music, Yamaha, etc.

Some facts:
• Studied Composition, Music Production & Studio Technology at the Art, Media & Technology faculty of the Utrecht School of the Arts, the Netherlands.
• Acquired a Master of Arts, Design for Digital Cultures degree (2011).

Sound Engine
Tom S. van Iersel
+31 (0)6 46 45 43 90

Contact me through the green button above and lets get to work.

Interview with Tom Sibren

  1. Q: Tell us about a project you worked on you are especially proud of and why. What was your role?

  2. A: The very first real record I did when graduating was a death metal record. I recorded, mixed and co-produced it. I was still figuring a lot out and didn't know as much as I do now about engineering. But I managed to make the vision of the artist come to life and the end result is still something I'm quite proud of. Other than that, all the projects I'm involved with are great. I'm not pleased very easily so I always strive for the best.

  3. Q: What are you working on at the moment?

  4. A: A singer-songwriter album and EP, 12 songs in total. Ranging from country and folk to rock inspired songs.

  5. Q: Analog or digital and why?

  6. A: Both! Both have pro's and cons and I love best of both worlds.

  7. Q: What's your 'promise' to your clients?

  8. A: I will make sure they will leave fulfilled, happy and proud with their new record.

  9. Q: What do you like most about your job?

  10. A: The creativity and the privilege to look inside of the artist's heart. They open themselves up fully and put their complete trust in the hands of me. That's a beautiful thing.

  11. Q: What questions do customers most commonly ask you? What's your answer?

  12. A: What my rates are and what genres I like to work with. My answer is my rate and this can vary between projects, and I love so many genres that it doesn't really matter. If the songs speak to me, I want to work with them.

  13. Q: What's the biggest misconception about what you do?

  14. A: That we want to work for free because we love the job so much. This goes for any creative professional, I guess.

  15. Q: What questions do you ask prospective clients?

  16. A: That totally depends on the project that they want to do with me. Their expectations and vision are most important to me. Money comes after.

  17. Q: What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?

  18. A: Be prepared and well rehearsed. Have a vision about your project and get help from a producer if you have doubts about your music.

  19. Q: If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?

  20. A: Power generator, UAD Apollo 8, Sony or Focal headphones, Macbook and a Mojave MA-200 microphone.

  21. Q: What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?

  22. A: I started playing guitar when I was 10 years old. I'm 31 now. In 2007 I started studying Composition & Music Production, graduated with a Master of Arts degree in 2011 and started out as a freelancer after being an intern/assistant engineer at Excess Studios in 2010/2011.

  23. Q: How would you describe your style?

  24. A: Raw but modern, organic and real. I don't like to polish up a production but rather show all the bruises and stains because that's where a lot of the emotion comes from. As long as the performances are great, of course.

  25. Q: Which artist would you like to work with and why?

  26. A: I would love to one day work with Kendrick Lamar. I think his approach to music in general is very refreshing and super creative. Doesn't have to be rap or hip-hop. He does so much more than that and I would love to be part of that some day.

  27. Q: Can you share one music production tip?

  28. A: All that matters is what comes out of the speakers.

  29. Q: What type of music do you usually work on?

  30. A: Usually Indie, singer-songwriter, rock, blues and country. But also R&B, hip-hop and metal.

  31. Q: What's your strongest skill?

  32. A: Mixing.

  33. Q: What do you bring to a song?

  34. A: I want to bring out the full potential of a song. I will think about arrangement, instrumentation, structure and the emotional impact of a song. That is where the biggest part of a great production comes from. I'll make sure we get that right so the song will almost mix itself because the production is so well taken care of. If the song is good, I will make it great. All the artist needs to worry about is their performance.

  35. Q: What's your typical work process?

  36. A: Always being ready for anything. That means taking the time to get to know the artist really well and understand their vision. When it comes to recording and mixing I just shut off my though process and focus on just being creative and not over think too much. I know from experience how to realize a vision and I always set my goals as high as possible.

  37. Q: Tell us about your studio setup.

  38. A: I have my own mix room at home where I work on a hybrid setup. Pro Tools 12, UAD software, Dangerous Music D-Box Analog Summing and Converters, Universal Audio Apollo 8 and a Digidesign 003 Rack and a 27" IIyama touchscreen running D-Touch software as my DAW controller. I've got a Lewitt set of microphones but usually record at other studio's in my vicinity.

  39. Q: What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?

  40. A: People who inspire me are Michael Brauer, Tchad Blake, Andrew Scheps, Vance Powell, Jack Joseph Puig and the likes. I love so many bands so also a lot of musicians. Steve Von Till and Scott Kelly of Neurosis have always played a big part in my musical life, as well as Steve Vai and Trey Azagthoth of Morbid Angel.

  41. Q: Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.

  42. A: I work with a lot of different genres but specialize in acoustic music; meaning music made with traditional instruments. I focus on recording and mixing but help with production and mastering sometimes too. Most of the time I prefer to capture the band all together live to get a very real feeling of performance instead of tracking all instruments separately.


Terms Of Service

I'm open to everything and anything. Easy and clear communication. Two revisions, average of 72 hr turnaround.

Gear Highlights
  • Rupert Neve Designs
  • Neve
  • Shadow Hills
  • Kush Audio
  • Yamaha
  • Avid
  • UAD
  • Digidesign
  • Accutronics
  • Universal Audio
  • Inward Connections
  • API
  • SSL
  • Dangerous Music
More Photos
More Samples
  • Recording to 2" tapeAug 30, 2014

    I'm having the pleasure to be working as an assistent recording engineer this September/October at the Moon Music studio where we'll be recording a band to a Studer 800 2" tape machine. It's something I've been wanting to learn for a long time and I can't wait to get to work on this project. This is going to be sweet! 

  • Thrashers Exploded 2nd EPAug 30, 2014

    First guitar tracks are waiting in my mailbox. Hopefully they're great. Fingers crossed we get this project done by Christmas! Geez Louise!