Balancing Booze and Adrenaline to Record an LP With “Huge Balls” – In The Studio with Sandrider


What was your pre-production like on this project?

We didn’t really do the traditional pre-production. In fact we never have for any of our albums, this band or otherwise. It’s not that we’re against it; we just never have the time or organization to do it right. So our “pre-production” was just practicing and hoping we weren’t getting in over our heads.

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How did you choose the studio?

We did our first album with Matt [Bayles] at Red Room and loved the way it came out, so it was kind of a foregone conclusion that we’d go back. Between this session and the last one, Nat and I also did Akimbo’s final album with him and that is also a peach. We’re big fans of his sound and we love working with him. On a side note, Matt and I are both huge assholes and when we work together we get to let go of the leash a little bit and just be sarcastic shitheads to each other. It’s very liberating.


What kind of sound were you looking for and how did you achieve it? 

Huge balls. We just told Matt we wanted huge balls and he kinda took it from there.

How does it compare to your last release in terms of style and the creative process?

We actually came to the studio under the assumption we were making an album this time, unlike last time when we all were lying to each other that they would be “just demos.” That and there will be more songs.

Did you use any special gear or recording techniques on this one?

Nope. Just the gear we always use. For technique, we like to go with “flawless shredding.”

What was your philosophy on live, full-band takes versus individual tracking?

We get bass live with drums, and then track guitars and vocals. That’s not a philosophy, it’s what we have to work with because I am horrible at guitar.

Any special guests?

Yes. Me. [editor’s note – har dee har har, John…]

DSC_0707What did you try to accomplish in the studio that you’re not able to do live?

We only record what we’re able to do live. We don’t want to lie to you.

What were the toughest challenges you faced?

Balancing the alcohol consumption so that you don’t get too shitty, but are still able to crush a face or two.

Any funny stories from the session that you’ll be telling for a while?

The only time I used a wah pedal, I was shirtless.


How did you handle final mixing and mastering? 

The record was mastered Ed Brooks at RFI Mastering.

DSC_0721What are your release plans?

Release date is still TBA, but it will come out on Good to Die Records.

Any special packaging?

We’ll be doing vinyl again, for sure, with artwork by Jesse Roberts.


  • Band Name: Sandrider
  • Album Title: Godhead
  • Recording Studio: Red Room, Seattle
  • Record Label: Good To Die Records
  • Release Date: TBA
  • Recorded and Produced by: Matt Bayles
  • Artwork by: Jesse Roberts
  • Layout by: Nat Damm
  • Mastering by: Ed Brooks at RFI Mastering

photo by Nik ChristoffersonKEY GEAR


  •  Verellen Higher Watt 100w amp
  •  Sunn Beta Lead
  •  Marshall JCM 800
  •  Fender Stratocaster


  •  Sunn Coliseum
  •  Ampeg 8×10
  •  Sunn 2×15
  •  Rusty Box pedal
  •  Prunes & Custard pedal
  •  Geddy Lee signature Fender Jazz Bass


  •  Ludwig drums: 28×14 kick, 16×14 rack tom, 20×18 floor tom & 14×6 super sensitive snare
  •  Cymbals: old Zildjian 15″ hi-hats, 20″ Paiste 2002 crash & 24″ Paiste Giant Beat ride
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