From left: Joe LaPorta, Emery Dobyns, Fran Healy and Emily Lazar
Fran Healy, frontman for the band Travis, was at The Lodge (New York City) to master his latest solo album, Wreckorder, with mastering engineer Joe LaPorta and chief mastering engineer Emily Lazar. The tracks were recorded and mixed by engineer/producer Emery Dobyns, who Lazar says is “a real jack of all trades and definitely one of my favorite clients.”
Lazar’s studio is fitted with SonicStudio and Pyramix, a recent addition. “All of the plug-ins are getting better and better by the day, and they can be extraordinarily effective,” Lazar says, “but I usually tend to lean more toward my analog chain. On this album, Emery bounced stems as well as main mixes for each song, which, when needed, allowed me a little bit of wiggle room to get the most out of the tracks without unnecessarily altering the integrity of the mix. With Fran’s album, Emery created a uniquely lush soundscape with really deep organic tones that I tried to highlight as much as possible.
“Fran’s music has this incredible intensity but is packaged in this delicate and graceful way,” Lazar continues. “The most important thing was to keep the ‘intensity’ intact and not push or slam things at all. I really wanted to keep the focus on Fran’s vocals to allow them to really communicate with the listener.”