Blue Rock News

Nov 18, 2016

Guest Engineer, Andy VanGuilder mixes Modern Mal

Andy VanGuilder, engineer for The Accidentals, and Owner of Halohorn Productions in Michigan, joined us last week to finish a new project called Modern Mal. Andy worked with Blue Rock assistant Sarah Garber, bringing this inspired music to a new sonic level. We were proud to send him home to Michigan with a great product that we cannot wait to hear out in the world.  

Andy VanGuilder

Andy's formal training and education was earned at the prestigious Conservatory Of Recording Arts & Sciences in Gilbert, Arizona. Professionals such as Jeff Thomas, Grammy winning producer of The Smashing Pumpkins, and Logic designer Robert Brock, guided Andy through his training and certification which includes Pro Tools, Antares Auto Tune 5, Smaart-SIA, JBL Vertical Technology and T.C. electronics M3000. Pro Audio Review editor Kevin Becka and Pro Tools expert Michael S. Jones also helped hone Andy's skills.

Growing up in a very musical family, Andy spent much of his early life surrounded by the sounds of Flatt and Scruggs, Hank Williams, Bill Monroe, and other country and bluegrass greats. He still plays bass in a bluegrass band in and around Northern Michigan, and drums in "Rachel Brooke" and "Modern Mal".  Andy’s influences today include: Louis Jordan, Brian Wilson, Weezer, Dennis Wilson, The Lemonheads, Ben Folds, 1950's and 1960's rock n roll, The Wondermints, 311, Esham, Guns N’ Roses, Insane Clown Posse, Megadeth,  MXPX, Explorers Club, Jelly Fish, and everything local and unsigned. His all time favorite group: The Beach Boys.

Andy and the Halohorn crew play a positive role in the Traverse City area music community. He has hosted Interlochen Arts Academy students during an extra-curricular program where they learned about the studio workflow and recorded their own music.

With over twelve years of experience in the control room, Andy VanGuilder has the work ethic and attention to detail that can help bring your audio vision to reality.

Modern Mal

Modern Mal is an extension of the higher human faculties. We are song writers trying to make beautiful music. They stared in 2011, as a collaboration between country singer, Rachel Brooke and a bunch of talented Michigan musicians, and are working on their first studio album!

Incendiary young country singer and songwriter Rachel Brooke channels the darkest nights of American Southern music, pulling forth influences from raw, early country singing to Chicago blues greats, vintage New Orleans “jass” bands to old animated cartoons, all tied together in the framework of her old-fashioned melodies.

It takes a peculiar vision to be able to unite these many different sounds, but Brooke’s pulled off the most difficult task: she’s created a new sound from a pastiche of old music without sounding derivative. Instead her music sounds incredibly fresh, sepia-toned perhaps with the vision of our distant past, but as rough-edged and hand-honed as the best of today’s roots music. She’s quite the paradox: a young songwriter who perfectly embodies the music of the American South, but who lives in the wilds of Northern Michigan. An artist who grew up with parents in a bluegrass band, but who spent her teen years raging away in an all-girl punk band. A shy, soft-spoken introvert whose wall- shaking voice has earned her a place at cutting- edge roots music festivals like Muddy Roots. An icon of underground country music who covers jazz greats like Fats Domino on her new record. But when you sing this well and play like hell, who do you have to answer to anyways?