A Shelford 5088 in a Studio by the Sea

In late 2014, the first Limited Edition Shelford 5088 Console was installed in a very remote and very beautiful studio on the coast of Norway. Now, here’s an interview with three of the main people behind the studio: Ante, Henning and Terje, from Ocean Sound Recordings.

Can you please tell us a bit about your studio? When was it started, and by whom?

Ocean Sound was first established in a boathouse back in 2005 as a private studio for the Norwegian band The Margarets. They had really good analog-sounding aesthetics and bought some nice tape machines, outboard and classic microphones. Soon they attracted a lot of requests from bands that wanted to record in the boathouse. It didn’t take long before the place was crammed with equipment and instruments and the idea to design a purpose-built studio was born.

What makes it such a special place?

The stunning location is 10 feet from the Atlantic Ocean, it has great equipment, good-sounding rooms and a welcoming staff. The studio is located on a small island and clients can sort of isolate themselves from the outside world and really focus on recording. Still, it is only a 10-minute drive from the airport to the studio, and from the studio to Aalesund, the nearest town. Clients can fly to Aalesund Airport directly from cities like Oslo, London and Amsterdam. The studio is located “at the end of the world” – but on the other hand, it´s really easy to get here. Clients can also work in the studio 24 hours a day and sleep in one of our eight beds.


So how did you hear about the 5088 console? What made you choose it?

Our friend, the producer Nick Terry (Co-Director of Thermionic Culture, Ltd.), rented our studio B mix room for a year and brought his 5088. We were really impressed by the build quality and sound. When the Shelford modules were released in 2013, we knew we had a real alternative for replacing the Neve VR60. And so we did.

How does the console sound, and how has it helped your work? What is your favorite thing about it?

We could go on about the details of the sound, but this is the best way we can put it: awesome!

We were really fond of our old VR60, but we have a very tight schedule in the studio with limited time for maintenance. With the 5088 being literally maintenance-free, we can spend our extra time improving other aspects of our operation. Our 5088 with the Shelford modules makes it extremely fast to get good sounds on tracking sessions and fits our control room and general vibe better. One of the first sessions it did was a recording of a live-in-studio show with the 70′s style rock band Orango. There were a LOT of microphones in action, and the 5088 made everything go very smoothly and effortlessly.

For favorite things…the texture-function is fantastic, but really the main thing is that you can forget technical details and focus on the music. And it both sounds and looks stunning!

What other equipment is in the studio?

We have four Studer tape machines, a Ampex ATR-102, two Neumann U-47′s, EMT 140 plate and loads of outboard. We have a lot of artists traveling here by plane, so we also have a good selection of instruments, a Yamaha C5 grand piano, Hammond B3, Wurlitzer, Rhodes, Yamaha CP-80, guitars and amps and heaps of drums.

Have there been any particularly exciting artists/events/happenings in the studio lately?

There’s always a lot of exciting stuff going on in the studio and it is difficult to select only a few highlights. We have a varied selection of clients coming here to record. During one month we can have international acts like Travis and Arcade Fire working here alongside with local choirs and bands. All our clients are important to us and we want all to experience Ocean Sound Recording as a unique studio.

Thank you so much for doing this interview with us! Is there anything else you’d like to share?

We’d like to thank our Norwegian Rupert Neve Designs distributor Prolyd for making this happen. And of course Rupert Neve Designs for excellent service and outstanding quality products.

Ocean Sound Recordings
The Shelford 5088
The Shelford Modules

Top and bottom photos by Johannes Lovund.
Middle photo by Kristin Stoylen.