HOUSTON, TEXAS â€” Underscoring its commitment to the Houston-area music industry, Wire Road Studios recently expanded both its space and services by opening a brand new, 5,000-square-foot world-class studio in the historic Heights district of Houston, Texas. The company moved its operations from a smaller project-based studio to a vast state-of-the-art facility that boasts two recording studios, a video editing suite and an impressive production studio.
Wire Road Studios, which made its debut in 2009, emerged from the collaborative efforts of accomplished musician and engineer James Kelley and his father, Byron Kelley. The two serve as president/chief engineer and owner, respectively. â€œMusic is a hobby of mine, but it is Jamesâ€™ true passion,â€? explains Byron Kelley. â€œHe had the vision for Wire Road Studios, so a few years ago we put our
heads together and decided to launch it.â€?
With Jamesâ€™ background in music and production (music credits include Mannie Fresh, Kenny Jackson, Jazze Pha & The Niceguys; production credits include organizations such as Gensler Architecture and the Museum of Fine Arts Houston), it didnâ€™t take long for Wire Road Studios to grow. James and Byron quickly found themselves in need of more space to expand the business into a full-service studio. Wire Road now offers a wide range of production services such as recording/tracking, editing, mixing, mastering, original music creation and video production. â€œThe goal of our new space was to bring a first-class mixing facility with mastering capabilities to Houston,â€? notes James Kelley. â€œWe wanted something really high-end and modern that would attract local musicians who are doing serious work, as well as regional and national musicians. You wonâ€™t find anything else quite like Wire Road Studios in Houston.â€?
The new facility was designed from the ground up by acoustical/architectural design firm Russ Berger Design Group (RBDG), a Dallas-based company that specializes in recording and broadcast studios. â€œWhen we began asking who could design a first-class studio, RBDG came up a lot in our conversations,â€? James Kelley explains. â€œAfter meeting with their team, we knew RBDG would be our choice.â€? The RBDG staff listened to what he wanted to accomplish and carefully crafted the facilityâ€™s key architectural and acoustical elements using Kelleyâ€™s vision as their compass.
â€œThe studio offers an innovative mix of digital and analog technologies,â€? notes Russ Berger, RBDGâ€™s design principal, â€œwhile delivering the highest sound quality possible in a creative, professional environment â€” suitable for any musical genre. Wire Road Studios fills a void for services that have long been absent in this part of Texas.â€?
Also key to the successful construction and technical completion of Wire Roadâ€™s facility were Jim Leder of Houston-based Leder Construction, and Roy and Dayna Howell of Austin, Texas-based Ground Zero Services who provided system wiring, technical and integration services.
Studio Aâ€™s 600-square-foot live room has a soaring 18-foot ceiling and can be viewed from the control room and the two large isolation rooms via expansive 8-foot walls of glass. It comes equipped with a Brodmann grand piano as well as an array of optional musical instrument, keyboard, drum and amplifier choices. The control room delivers 5.1 surround sound mixing capabilities with an extensive selection of analog gear and digital plug-ins.
Studio B features a control room with isolation booth and is primarily used for mixing, mastering and voiceover work. A machine room is centrally located between Studios A and B. Studio C is dedicated to video production and editing. Rounding out the facility are equipment storage rooms, a conference room, kitchen and lounge area and an outdoor covered patio that provides comfort and relaxation for clients and staff alike.
Equipment highlights include a Euphonix S5 Fusion console; Shadow Hills, Brent Averil, DW Fearn, Retro Instruments, Manley, Daking, Weiss Engineering and SSL compressors and equalizers; and microphones from AEA, AKG, Blue, Bock, Brauner, Lawson, Neumann, Schoeps, sE, Sennheiser, and Shure. Monitors by ATC and Focal are housed in Studios A and B. Studio C uses the industry-standard Final Cut Pro platform enhanced by a Euphonix Artist Series control board.
â€œThe live room is the largest room in the facility – its acoustic space and environment is what sets our studio apart from others,â€? James Kelley continues. â€œThe sound quality is excellent. When you move from the live room to one of our isolation rooms, you experience nothing but silence â€“ which provides a perfect backdrop for instruments speaking into each roomâ€™s natural ambience. Itâ€™s incredible. Our guests are very impressed. Plus, the live roomâ€™s sheer volume allows the flexibility to support a wide variety of instruments and performances.â€?