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California native Michael Carnarius was given a distinct choice at an early age. “When I was in grade school, I was given the option of either playing soccer or learning electric guitar,” Michael says. “I chose the guitar.”
Diving headfirst into music, Michael began working with a teacher who shunned lesson books and taught the young guitarist more about technique. His experiences in recording music began soon after, as he collaborated with his teacher on writing songs and recording them on a Fostex Multitracker. From there, he quickly progressed to recording demos for his and other bands in school and then on to producing artists in his own right.
In the time since his initial recording projects, the approach Michael has taken to working in the studio has come a long way. He has become an expert in Ableton Live and Push and nimbly meshes these digital tools along with analog in his hybrid system.
“There isn't one part of recording I am inspired by the most. I love each step along the way,” Michael states. “I love working with other artists; Collaborating to come up with tracks that I would not have on my own. My favorite part of the recording process, though, is vocal production.”
Whether at Vintage King or in the studio, Michael has a persistent dedication to his work. “My mentor always told me to be the first one there and the last one to leave. Music is important and takes time, so why not invest time?” Outside of the studio, Michael invests his time in traveling to other cities, hanging out in nature and cooking up some tasty food (...or at least attempting to).
Who are some of your favorite artists?
Pink Floyd - This was one of my first favorite bands. They offer an orchestra of sound that is just brilliant. Really big influence of mine.
Wand - This is just raw '70s rock. I have the album Golem on repeat.
Queens of the Stone Age - Josh Homme is my hero. No further explanation needed.
MF Doom - Killer on the MPC. The samples he uses are always unique and a unique rap flow like his always intrigues me.
Nosaj Thing - His soundscapes are amazing. Dark and interesting. A synth whiz. I always feel inspired after listening to the album Drift.
Wave Racer - Bubble gum trap with 80s synths. Good stuff.
What is your favorite piece of gear?
Elektron Analog Keys.
What record do you point to as an example of perfect music production?
The Mars Volta - De-Loused in the Comatorium: The album is a sea of sound contained in a fishbowl! They're a big influence of mine - I enjoy the angst the group still held from their At the Drive-In days in combination with the experimental approach of this iteration of the group.
Working with Mike Carnarius has been a great experience from day one! As a contemporary music school, we are so grateful for Mike’s continuing efforts making available the best resources we could hope to provide our students. Mike has gone above and beyond to give us a great deal on hardware and software, and service at Vintage King through him has been, and continues to be excellent.
EEI Creative Arts
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