Peter Labberton

Mixer

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6 Reviews
Peter Labberton on SoundBetter

Mixer/producer/engineer for St. Vincent (Grammy-winning, "Daddy's Home"), Parquet Courts, Matt Berninger/Ronboy/Resynator, Jane., Julia Stone, others! Always song-focused and endlessly dedicated to creating great records. I have my own studio in LA where I mix.

I have been making records professionally for the last decade. I started as a drummer and cut my teeth in the studio at Hyde Street Studios in San Francisco. Later I worked as a staff engineer at 25th Street Recording in Oakland before moving to LA. I feel fortunate to have a background as an engineer in a large, high-end studio where I could shadow producers such as Joe Chiccarelli, Val Garay, and John Cuniberti and learn the ropes from the best of the best. Now I have my own studio, where I have taken this experience and heritage and adapted it to the process of making music in the 21st century.

My focus these days is on mixing. For a typical mix, I will spend the needed time to prep and mix the song as best I can based on the rough mix, any provided references, and how I think the song is best presented, and then send it off to you for notes and revisions. We'll go over notes either over e-mail or live via Zoom and Audiomovers, or if you are in the LA area, it's possible to do in person revisions. I'm not done until you are 100% happy with the mix and everyone on the team is satisfied.

Please include the latest rough mixes when contacting me so I can put together an accurate quote!

Would love to hear from you. Click the contact button above to get in touch.

Credits

Discogs verified credits for Peter Labberton
  • M. Lockwood Porter
  • M. Lockwood Porter
  • Teenager (5)
  • M. Lockwood Porter
  • Lewis Jordan And Music At Large
  • M. Lockwood Porter
  • Sleater-Kinney
  • Parquet Courts
  • The 21st Century (4)
  • M. Lockwood Porter
  • M. Lockwood Porter
  • Teenager (5)
  • John Calvin Abney
  • Eight Belles
  • M. Lockwood Porter
  • Lewis Jordan And Music At Large
  • Lesley Kernochan
  • M. Lockwood Porter, John Calvin Abney
  • M. Lockwood Porter
  • Stephan Thelen - Kronos Quartet / Al Pari Quartet
  • St. Vincent

6 Reviews

Endorse Peter Labberton
  1. Review by Jeremy Lyon
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    by Jeremy Lyon

    I’ve worked with Peter on several projects in a variety of capacities, and he wears several hats with grace, poise, and an egoless goal to always serve the song. He’s incredibly capable, grounded, and quick. Whether he’s producing, mixing, recording, drumming, or doing it all at the same time he brings the same passion and commitment to every session.

  2. Review by M. Lockwood Porter
    starstarstarstarstar
    by M. Lockwood Porter

    I have worked with Peter on many different projects over the past decade. He is not only a fantastic engineer, but a thoughtful and sensitive creative partner with a unique ability to create an atmosphere conducive to artistic exploration. As a producer, he can be your project’s “secret weapon” - coming up with exciting ideas that both serve the spirit of the song while taking it in a surprising direction. He is also extremely easy and fun to work with, and a great friend. You would be very luck to work with him on your next project.

  3. Review by Adam Yas
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    by Adam Yas

    Peter surpassed every expectation in the creation of my full length release, Gender Of The Holy Spirit. Not only did he mix the record but he performed all the drums and engineered the vocals. Peter couldn’t have been more of a professional and his contributions were invaluable - dialed in, patient, communicative and organized. He brought the vision for the record to life, was both passionate and compassionate at every turn, and served the songs with an artful efficiency I had never before experienced. We put so much on Peter’s plate and he simply knocked it out of the park. I’m so grateful.

  4. Review by Brian Kelly
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    by Brian Kelly

    Choose Peter! Not only is he quick and nimble in the studio, but his positive attitude, meticulous attention to detail, and intuitive willingness to keep pushing a project forward, is why I trust him with my songs… over and over and over again. He’s also a really good drummer… bass player… guitarist… pianist… and cookie baker.

  5. Review by Kayhan Golkar
    starstarstarstarstar
    by Kayhan Golkar

    I have had the pleasure of working with Peter on several projects, including a recent full length beast of an album with huge tones and string arrangements. Besides being an incredible drummer, one of his greatest strengths in the studio is the ability to chase creative ideas on the spot. Pristine mixes, insane drum tones and a wonderful presence.

  6. Review by Bevan Herbekian
    starstarstarstarstar
    by Bevan Herbekian

    I’ve worked with Peter on dozens of recording projects and he’s an absolute gem. As a mixing engineer, he’s knowledgeable, experienced, creative and versatile. He’s a great communicator with an easy going, positive attitude who clearly cares about the projects and people he chooses to work with and goes above and beyond to make sure that the end result is something special that honors the artist's intent and exceeds expectations. It sounds hyperbolic, but it's true: he’s the kind of talented engineer you always hope to find and, once you do, you want him involved in all your future projects

Interview with Peter Labberton

  1. Q: Tell us about a project you worked on you are especially proud of and why. What was your role?

  2. A: Album called Gender Of The Holy Spirit by Adam Yas—I mixed it, engineered a good deal of it, and played drums/percussion. It's a massive sounding project with a lot of ambition. Also very excited to have mixed part of the newest Parquet Courts album, Sympathy For Life.

  3. Q: What are you working on at the moment?

  4. A: Knee-deep in a handful of mix projects and diving into producing a full-length album this month.

  5. Q: Is there anyone on SoundBetter you know and would recommend to your clients?

  6. A: Sam KS!

  7. Q: Analog or digital and why?

  8. A: Digital. We're at a point where the sonic difference in all but every case is negligible, and the workflow is soooo much better for 99% of situations. At least if we're talking mixing—tracking can be a different situation. I do utilize some "outboard" gear while mixing, but it's always printed back in for easy recall and reliability.

  9. Q: What do you like most about your job?

  10. A: Getting to work on music every day is just an insane privilege. Hard to not enjoy that. To be a bit more specific, I love the mixture of creative/musical problems and technical problems that I get to solve on a daily basis.

  11. Q: What questions do customers most commonly ask you? What's your answer?

  12. A: Hmm, so many are either project specific, or frankly mundane (i.e. how do you want the session sent over, sample rate, etc.). Um, ask me a question, always happy to chat!

  13. Q: What's the biggest misconception about what you do?

  14. A: I think most people who are familiar with the process of making records generally have a good idea... I think most of my family think I work with computers or soldering irons or something, though!

  15. Q: What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?

  16. A: Don't be afraid to be specific with what you want—I'm here to serve your song and get it to the best possible place, you won't offend me if you, say, want a particular reverb instead of the delay I used on the vocal!

  17. Q: If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?

  18. A: 1. Computer/interface/etc. etc. 2. Great monitors 3. Moog Grandmother 4. Drums 5. Coles 4038

  19. Q: How would you describe your style?

  20. A: I love drums, warmth, punch without harshness, and texture. I hope that these elements come through in the music I work on.

  21. Q: Which artist would you like to work with and why?

  22. A: At this very moment... Spoon. I love Britt Daniel's voice and the simplicity (and tones) in their music.

  23. Q: Can you share one music production tip?

  24. A: Concepts are bullshit! Don't chase down a piece of gear or even a method of working because you read so-and-so did something in Tape Op. By all means, educate yourself and experiment, but I know from experience that sticking to an idea over focusing on how the song is connecting is a mistake.

  25. Q: What type of music do you usually work on?

  26. A: Broadly speaking, indie/singer-songwriter/folk/rock/indie-pop.

  27. Q: What's your strongest skill?

  28. A: Maintaining a strong sense of rhythm/texture/atmosphere in a song.

  29. Q: What's your typical work process?

  30. A: For mixing: I'll have a chat with the band/artist about what they are looking for out of the mix, receive and prep files, and get to work. A rough mix that everyone involved is familiar with is super helpful so I'm not shooting in the dark—in most cases it's better to try to elevate what's already been established rather than starting with a completely blank slate, though I'm happy to do that when appropriate. Then I'll send off a bounce of the mix or connect via Zoom/Audiomovers for notes. I'm not done with the mix until everyone is 100% thrilled with it, but that doesn't often take more than a couple rounds of revisions. Then I print all the final mix WAVs and stems, and send it along! For producing: this is a bit trickier! These days, we often start from some sort of relatively fleshed out demo, and build/tweak from there. This could involve re-recording just about everything and doing a significant amount of creative changes, or just elevating the tones and trying a few "icing on the cake" ideas. That said, when given the opportunity, I absolutely love going into a big room with a band or a bunch of great players and recording a ton of stuff live. It just depends on the project!

  31. Q: What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?

  32. A: I graduated college with an English degree in 2011, but a deep need to try and make a life in music. This started by joining a band, which ultimately broke up. In the meantime I had started doing session work, which led to an internship and an informal apprenticeship at a classic San Francisco recording studio. I quit my bakery job in 2012 and haven't looked back—gradually I built a career in the Bay Area before moving to LA in 2017. Since arriving here, I've built my life around mixing and producing records both for independent artists and some well-known artists, all of which I am thrilled and grateful to have gotten to work with!

  33. Q: What's your 'promise' to your clients?

  34. A: That I will approach each session with the sincere intention to make the best damn record humanly possible! I mean, it's a bit of a lofty goal (!), but that's absolutely the north star with every song and session.

  35. Q: What questions do you ask prospective clients?

  36. A: What songs/sounds inspired you in this project? As specific as a snare or vocal sound or as general as the process behind the writing or what a particular band or song means to you as a listener. As much background and context as I can get is always helpful and illuminating.

  37. Q: What do you bring to a song?

  38. A: The desire to always make the best choice for the song and a lack of ego.

  39. Q: Tell us about your studio setup.

  40. A: My studio is at my house in Los Angeles. It's a single room optimized for mixing and a full (overdub-based) production. Lean and mean! After years spent in windowless studios, I'm thrilled to have an inspiring place to work filled with natural light. I have top-notch monitoring and a modern setup that sounds timeless.

  41. Q: What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?

  42. A: Shawn Everett, Tchad Blake, Nigel Godrich, Tucker Martine

  43. Q: Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.

  44. A: 1. Mixing: mostly (but not exclusively) remote. I receive multitracks/stems, the latest rough mix, and any references and notes and I'm off to the races! I'll typically work a full day at least on a mix, and then send off for notes. I'm not done until everyone is totally thrilled with the song, and I'm always happy to address any notes, big or small. Sometimes a mix is just pushing the song that last 5% because everything is already really close, and sometimes it's a big lift and I'm shaping tones and making bold choices—always perfectly happy to do either! 2. Productions: often this starts with a demo my client made at home, and we'll re-record tracks or creatively process as needed. Could spend a few hours or a few days getting things right. Drums are my first instrument, but I also play bass, keys, and guitar—to varying levels of expertise! I'm lucky to know great players who can supplement where me and the artist/band may be lacking. I often mix my own productions, which makes for a nice streamlined process. 3. Session drums: often remote and at my own studio. I am set up to get fantastic tones, I work quick, and as with mixing I don't call it done until you are 100% happy. I often add percussion and sometimes programmed drum parts as well. I deliver mix-ready, edited multitracks.

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St. Vincent, Somebody Like Me

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    St. Vincent, Somebody Like Me
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    Parquet Courts, Walking At A Downtown Pace
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    Jane., What A Moment
Terms Of Service

Full mix rate includes unlimited revisions and all needed deliverables/stems. I’m always happy to work with a budget to make a project happen, please reach out and we will discuss!

Gear Highlights
  • Neumann
  • Chandler Limited
  • Ludwig
  • Stager
  • Fender
  • Martin
  • Harmony
  • Soyuz
  • elysia
  • loads and loads of plug-ins
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