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Producer · Engineer · FOH
Austen Jux-Chandler

Austen Jux-Chandler

Engineer and Producer
Austen Jux-Chandler

Austen is a leading producer and engineer who learned much of his craft at London's legendary Dean St Studios. He has worked with many huge names and received a Grammy for his work on Adele's 25. He is currently working with Plan B and probably on a studio floor somewhere, recording drums as we speak…

Plan B, Ed Sheeran, Lady Gaga, Paul Weller, Adele, Wolf Alice, The Weekend, Hudson Taylor, Florence and the Machine, Mark Ronson, Danger Mouse, A$AP Rocky and Many More
Austen's Aston Gear
Spirit
Origin
Halo
Almost as Important as Food

I’m not sure there’s always one single reason why somebody gets into music. I feel like it’s just one of those things that becomes part of you. It’s always been one of the fundamental elements of any major or minor event in my life; every party, get together or just day-to-day life has been based around music. And food – food is just as important!

My career history mostly begins at Dean St. Studios in Soho, London. I took a year-long internship there as part of my degree and worked my way up to the role of Head Engineer not long after I graduated. Being such a young engineer in that position was a bit of a baptism of fire, but I’ve always thrived under pressure so I found my feet pretty quickly and began to flourish. Working there was a great exposure to so many different styles of music and I spent the whole time learning from each of the other engineers, producers and musicians that came through the door.

Being in-house at one of the best studios in London always meant that I didn’t really bother investing in much gear myself, so my personal setup is pretty humble. And from constantly having had to adapt to the various setups and preferences of clients I’m now genuinely happiest when I get to rock up to a new space and see what toys they have to offer.

Experimenting with the New Boy

My main focus for the last year and a half has been working alongside Plan B for his upcoming album Heaven Before All Hell Breaks Loose. Rather than the usual 'write the songs', 'record the songs', and then 'mix the songs', it’s been a slow, evolving and creative process with elements being added or changed right until the last stages. I therefore needed to make sure I had something versatile on hand to record with at all times, and the Origin soon became a reliable workhorse. My working chain for a lot of ad-hoc recordings is now the Aston Origin into a Neve 1073, then LA2A, then Universal Audio Apollo and then into Pro Tools.

As the new addition to any mic arsenal, the new boy – in this case an Aston Spirit – often gets thrown up as an experiment. For me this came in the form of needing a few extra ambience options for a drum recording, and with no preconceived ideas of what it should sound like you’re open to trying any weird ideas. So luckily I was afforded the opportunity to tinker for a while before we hit record so I spent some time moving the Spirit around to hear it in a few different spots around the room. I finally settled on a strange, very distant corner I found under the piano we’d shifted to the end of the room. It seemed to have just the right balance of snare tail and kick drum body that added an extra depth to the drum tone.

Being a British brand is exactly why I was first drawn towards Aston. Historically, the UK has always produced industry-leading studio equipment. However, until Aston arrived, there was nobody waving the flag in the mic locker. Aston as a brand represents to me what’s best about British technology. It’s respectful of a vast heritage of innovation and development, but with the pioneering spirit to remain creative and present new ideas.

Out-takes

Q. If you weren’t working in music what would you be doing?
A. “I’d love to be one of those Instagram food/travel bloggers that gets paid to go around the world and eat all the best food.”

Q. What would your fantasy mic be?
A.  “Something with the warmth and depth of a valve U47, with the upfront clarity of a C800, but relatively small, lightweight and super strong to travel between sessions.”

Q. What are the 4 words you’d chose to describe Aston or your experience with the brand?
A.  “Innovative. Friendly. Invested. British.”

Credits

"I like to discover new music as much as possible so my ear tends to follow certain styles or trends and I get excited to hear new production techniques. But one thing that I seem to always be drawn back towards are straight up bands. There’s so much to be said for the collective output of 2 guitars, bass and drums! So groups like The Black Keys, The Rolling Stones, The Strokes, The Rakes, etc, are always going to find a place on my most-listened-to."

Plan B

Tomi Saario

 

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