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Working alongside legendary rock producer Butch Vig and his band, Garbage, for almost ten years now, Grammy-nominated engineer Billy Bush has spent many long hours in the studio auditioning new equipment. His technical savvy and creative application of modern and vintage technologies has helped execute the effects-heavy wall-of-sound production on the last four Garbage albums, as well as several Vig productions, including the latest Against Me! record. Bush's always-expanding studio toolset features his most essential discoveries, the latest of which is the A-Designs Audio REDDI tube direct box.
After several years at Vig's Smart Studios in Madison, WI, Bush relocated to Los Angeles where he currently works between his home studio, which he calls a "constantly changing" setup, and popular L.A. studios like Henson Recording and Conway. During a recent session, Bush heard the tube DI a musician brought into the studio and, impressed with its effect, began looking into buying one. He spoke with bass player extraordinaire Justin Meldal-Johnson (Beck, Air, Gnarls Barkley) who strongly suggested that Bush check out the REDDI. Shortly after this recommendation, Bush relays, "I borrowed one from Peter Montessi for a tracking session, and it totally kicked ass!"
Needless to say, Bush picked up a REDDI and has been using it regularly ever since. "It's my go-to bass DI now, but it also sounds awesome on a Rhodes," he notes. "I find it pretty versatile in that it makes everything I use it on sound bigger and better--bass, keys, you name it. Sometimes you just stumble across pieces of gear that makes your life easier when it comes to getting a killer sound. The REDDI is one of them."
Most recently, Bush used the REDDI on bass tracks for the upcoming Vig-produced album for English indie-rock band The Subways. Bass player Charlotte Cooper played a Lakland instrument, which Bush tracked into the REDDI then into a Universal Audio LA-2A compressor. He describes, "I wanted that big and bold P-Bass type tone and it totally nailed that sound."
Bush adds that he will typically send bass tracks through a Little Labs PCP Instrument Distro to the REDDI, then to an LA-2A before it hits Pro Tools. While the PCP's other outputs feed alternate bass DIs, the REDDI is Bush's choice tube DI for rock tracks.
Prior to working on The Subway's new album, Bush recorded the critically acclaimed new Against Me! release, New Wave, at Paramount Studios, co-produced and mixed Eric Avery's (Jane's Addiction) new solo record, and engineered and mixed a new solo record for Train front-man Pat Monahan. He also engineered this past summer's Garbage release, a "Best Of" album called Absolute Garbage.
A versatile and portable new addition to Bush's equipment arsenal, A-Designs' REDDI will be a great asset on upcoming rock recordings as well, adds Bush, who assures, "I won't leave home without it!"
The fire engine red REDDI tube direct box has become a favorite of many producer/engineers and musicians who appreciate the warmth it brings to their tracks. The REDDI features a combo XLR 1/4-inch input, front-panel 1/4-inch "Thru" input, balanced XLR output, rotary level knob, 6NIP vacuum tube, toroidal power transformer, and ground-lift switch and IEC AC power connector.
A-Designs Audio is a boutique manufacturer of high-quality professional audio products, including the MP-A Series (all-tube microphone preamplifiers), Pacifica (stereo solid-state microphone preamplifier), REDDI (all-tube direct box), ATTY and ATTY2'D (passive line attenuators), and EM Series (500 Series-compatible microphone preamplifier modules).