Adam Young of “Owl City” Mixes on Focal Monitors
New chart-topping artist chooses Focal Twin6 Be monitors on breakout album ‘Ocean Eyes’
With a growing fan-base and a world tour that continues throughout 2010, Adam Young, the creative force behind the band “Owl City,” is taking off. His first independent release in 2008, ‘Maybe I’m Dreaming,’ received much praise and made Young into a phenomenon, with over 16 million profile views and over 80 million plays on MySpace, all stemming from posting a few songs from the year before.
That’s led to Owl City’s newest CD – ‘Ocean Eyes’ – released in 2009 by Universal Republic Records. The album has sold over 1 million copies in the U.S. alone, while the first single “Fireflies” hit #1 in 23 countries. During the making of the ‘Ocean Eyes’ album Young discovered Focal Twin6 Be monitors, then got himself a pair. “I absolutely love the Focals. I had mixed with other brands over the years, but it was always a bit deceiving. Other monitors seemed somewhat overly polished, bass heavy and even ‘clubby.’ The Focal Twin 6s are so transparent, but still easy to listen to and work with: they really help my mixes translate to anything I play them back on,” states Young.
Having used other monitors, Young does notice major differences with the Focal Twin 6s, “I can listen to them all day and not get fatigued. They’re very ‘true’ sounding monitors, but not so transparent and flat that they’re hard to listen to. They have a perfect balance,” he says.
“I engineered and mixed most of the record before I got my hands on a pair of my own Twin 6s,” adds Young, “but several months before, I wound up at a studio in Seattle doing some post-production string tracks at Two Sticks Audio studios and the control room there had a pair of Twin 6s. We ended up doing a lot of mix work with them and I couldn’t believe how transparent and accurate they sounded.”
Having a mix sound great in the studio is one thing; it’s another achievement to have it sound great in other listening environments. “Whenever I finish a mix, I bounce it and play it on everything I have around – old computer speakers, car stereo, headphones and laptop speakers,” reveals Young. “I’ve been incredibly happy with the way the Twin 6s translate, to the point that I finish a mix in the studio and even if I feel like it’s ‘mediocre’ in terms of the time I spent beefing tracks up, EQing, compressing, etc, when I play the mix through something else, even laptop speakers, I’m amazed at how everything translates and really seems to gel together. I’m always pleasantly surprised.”
Young continued, “I’ve had a few other engineers hear my new mix system and they absolutely love the Twin 6s. I have several friends-of-friends who mix with Focal monitors and they have nothing but great things to say. Literally every engineer I know who has mixed with a pair of Focals or heard them played back are incredibly impressed.”
Making a major change in studio monitors is no easy decision, but Young is happy he did, “I tossed and turned for a long time before taking the plunge and buying a new pair of monitors. I wanted a pair of speakers that would make me excited about engineering and mixing, rather than dreading what I would discover after working for hours in the studio and then playing the given mix back on another system only to be dismayed at how different it sounded. I can truly trust the Focals and that’s the most important thing to me.”
Check out the official “Owl City” website at: http://www.owlcitymusic.com
To find out more about Adam Young and Owl City, visit his management company website,
Foundations Artist Management: http://www.foundationsartistmanagement.com/
For more on Focal monitors please visit: www.focal-fr.com (choose the ‘Focal Professional’ link)