The Architecture and Geography of Sound Studios

The Architecture and Geography of Sound Studios

This is a book about sound studios, focusing on their architectural and geographical aspects. It explores how music is materialized under specific spatial and technological conditions and the myths associated with this process.

Through ten in-depth studies, it examines the design, evolution and current function of sound studios amidst economic and technological shifts in the music industry. Traditional studios are in flux between the past and future. The industry, while steeped in romanticism and nostalgia, also embraces forward-driven pragmatism and an extensive reuse culture, encompassing heritage audio, building materials and existing buildings. A surprisingly diverse architectural heritage, the most significant feature is the host building, the framework around the studio capsule. Many traditional studios adapt to digitalization with hybrid solutions, reflecting a shift toward smaller, more versatile spaces. In a time when recordings in theory can happen anywhere, destination studios must excel to attract clients, balancing historical legacies with diversification. Although they may be easy to deconstruct, many of the myths endure, sustaining ideas of landmark recordings, unique locations and distinct remnants of sonic heritage. Courtesy of their capacity to keep the past alive in the present, traditional sound studios are best described as museums that work.

This book aims to reach scholars and students with an interest in history, theory and preservation, as well as practicing architects and architectural students who wish to find out more about the relationship between sound and space, acoustic design and retrofitting of historical buildings into specialized functions. It also aims to reach practicing musicians, producers, music students and music scholars.

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