Hugh Padgham talks to t5m about the fortunate accident which led to his discovery of the now infamous “gated drum sound” as heard on Phil Collins’ ‘In The Air Tonight’. What started as Phil Collins’ warming up in the corner of a studio has since become an iconic sound, making music history.
This famous effect is created by adding a large amount of heavily compressed room ambience to the drum sound, and then feeding the reverb through a device known as a ‘noise gate’…not complicated at all then? But, it definately works, resulting in the famed ‘gated reverb’ or ‘gated drum’ effect, where the reverberation cuts off abruptly, rather than fading away.
We recommend listening to explanation several times – just to check you understand!