Dear Reality: On the Road with Sergio Maschetzko

You’re on the tour bus with a band you’re producing. The concert yesterday gave you an idea for the current production, you pull out your laptop and make a few quick edits to the mix - everything flows naturally. But yeah, this also means that you should be able to work on it on the road. Thus, means being busy at almost any point of the day. 

This is just a glimpse into the life of Sergio Maschetzko. He is a London-based Front of House Sound Engineer for Black Midi, Yard Act, and English teacher, just to name a few, but also actively produces successful rock bands such as The Last Dinner Party, Black Country No Road, English Teacher and Orlando Weeks. We talked to him about his work, approach, and workflow using Dear Reality’s stereo plugins on the road.

Can you please give us a short introduction about yourself and your career? 

My name’s Sergio Maschetzko, I’m the Front of House for Yard Act at the moment. And I’m trying to be a producer (laughs). I’ve been doing this - Live sound - for 20 years. More or less. And I’ve been producing albums for the last 3 years. 

20 years of music industry experience is pretty long. How did you make it this far? 

I think two of the most important things is trying to be a good team player. You’re spending a lot of time with people that you don’t know on the bus, on a plane, or in a different country. So you need to be, you know, nice. Keepin' it nice, keeping it easy for everyone. And try to be professional, when you work. I’ve been also producing even more and more, and it’s getting to a point, where I hope that in a couple of years, I quit touring, and just do production only. That’s my goal. 

How did you start to produce "The Last Dinner Party"? 

I did a single, that is a live session - and it came also out as a live video for Island Records. So I also work for Island with “English Teacher”. They invited me to produce the single, and I did it. And Island has been really nice to me.

How do you use tools from Dear Reality during your day-to-day workflow?

I’m using the reverb, Exoverb, and really, really enjoy it. It just sits right in the mix. I am also using MIYA. That thing that harmonically distorts your frequencies - I love that. I really like to create my own sounds sometimes. And what I do is to blend different sources. So, I like to create a baseline, for example. And then you blend the original signal with another channel, which has MIYA on it. Then I tweak it around until I get a sound that I like. And that’s how I use it most of the time. I really enjoy working with dearVR MONITOR as well. Especially when you are on the road while I’m mixing stuff. You just have this uhm… space. Like you are in a studio, and you can recreate that from your headphones. I’m using it with the left and right head rotation knob too. So, I really enjoy that as well. I think this is a fantastic tool.

And how do you listen to your productions and sessions on the road?

I use it with my pair of NDH 30 from Neumann, they’re absolutely fantastic. And I can recreate the headphone profile within MONITOR as a preinstalled setting [to flatten the response curve]. So it’s absolutely fantastic. I really enjoy that.

Is there anything else you'd like to mention about your production workflow? 

Basically, I always adapt for what it is that I’m working with. I don’t have a template, but I got my few plugins that I always use. And the virtual monitoring, Dear Reality plugins are the ones that I use most of the time. With another ones I’m not going to name now (laughs). But it’s all tried to adapt for what is the project.

Thank you for your time!

Sergio Maschetzko
Always touring, never resting. Sergio dedicates his life to his love of sound, focusing on rocky productions in Great Britain. As a Front of House Sound Engineer for the likes of Interpol, Yard Act, and Black Country No Road, he made himself a name within the British music scene. His productions include the newcomer band The Last Dinner Party, which regularly scores high rankings within the UK charts.

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