The Rocketeers boosted by new SSL Duality

Dutch two-in-one production facility, The Rocketeers – incorporating The Producer’s House – has invested in an SSL Duality δelta SuperAnalogue console for a ‘new and versatile’ approach to their ideal sounds.

This new development in the business offers song-writing, production, mixing, and mastering services to artists and record companies, and is quickly generating demand in the UK and the US.

Both operations use the same facility in Hilversum, just outside Amsterdam – created from an existing but long-abandoned music facility.

Radio producers Joost Griffioen and Stas Swaczyna met in 2007, and it took them just three months to get the Rocketeers music production company up and running with the mission to supply radio and television with custom-made jingles and leaders.

The pair have gone on to work with many stations, including Radio 10, Radio 538, 100%NL, and 3 FM, NPO TV, RTL TV, and TALPA. In 2014, they were joined by Hansen Tomas who has since become the main face of The Producers House.

The 24-channel SSL Duality δelta console (with SSL Alpha-Link conversion and δelta -Link Pro Tools HD interfacing), was bought primarily because the team wanted to bring something special to their sounds and their clients. "When we started the studio in 2008 we mainly worked in the box and everything was going through plug-ins," explained Swaczyna. "But Joost and I wanted to create a new analogue sound for jingles and leaders… something wider and bigger.

"We started with another desk… But then we checked out a few other studios and sounds, and so on, and we came across the SSL sound. The biggest hits on earth are mixed on an SSL, so our ultimate dream was to mix our own jingles, leaders and songs on one."

Benelux SSL partner Joystick Audio arranged a demo of Duality δelta and The Rocketeers were impressed not just by the SuperAnalogue sound, but by the dual DAW control and the δelta DAW-based console automation technology: "Of course it sounds fantastic, but it’s especially great for the way we integrate DAWs into our workflow,” said Swaczyna. "It’s the best of analogue sound and digital control in one board."

The Rocketeers Music Studio console has 24 input channels and a master section, but also incorporates 19in racks into additional frame space either side of the main console tiles.

One of Swaczyna’s favourite features is the SSL Variable Harmonic Drive (VHD) circuit, available on every channel of a Duality console. The operator can choose the ‘ultra-clean’ SSL preamp, or can switch in VHD. As input gain is increased, the circuit introduces either 2nd or 3rd harmonic distortion, or a blend of the two, for anything from a little warmth or edge to fierce grunge. Swaczyna concluded: "That sounds great on drums, strings… anything! It sounds really cool."

Picture: (right to left) Joost Griffioen, Stas Swaczyna, and Hansen Tomas.