Eric Kalina

Modern Rock & Metal Mixing

10 Reviews (2 Verified)
Eric Kalina on SoundBetter

Hey there I'm E! I'm a music producer specializing in all things loud, heavy, & modern. I'm here to help your project sound its best and to help you maximize your sonic potential. From pre-production through final master, I can help you turn your vision from idea to a commercially-ready reality. Let's make some noise!

Music production services available for mixing/mastering, mobile recording, digital audio editing, & custom samples and templates. Specializing in anything LOUD from Rock, Hard-Rock, Metal, Metalcore, Hardcore, Punk, Pop-Punk, and anything in-between!

Please feel free to stop by for more information. If you'd like to work together, please stop by, say hi, and let's get started on your next project!

Looking forward to working with you!

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


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10 Reviews

Endorse Eric Kalina
  1. Review by Gary H.

    Eric has been a significant part of our band's ability to produce quality music. His ability to mix and master several layers of music and vocals alike is impressive. He is easy to work with and is a great communicator. He is our go-to for engineering services.

  2. Review by ✪ MILITIA VOX

    What a pro! Cool, quick and easy to work with! Excellent

  3. Review by Hugo Ribeiro
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    Eric is a songwriting Jedi! 10 STARS!!!

  4. Review by Hugo Ribeiro
    check_circleVerified (Client)

    Eric writes some stellar tunes and is a joy to work with. A++++++++

  5. Review by Hugo Ribeiro
    check_circleVerified (Client)

    Another great song with Eric! A++++ songwriting and musicianship.

  6. Review by Ryan Stabach
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    Killer production skills. I had a great time working with Eric and working on his track. Super high pro glow!

  7. Review by Gideon Berger
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    Eric is a pleasure to work with.
    He's professional, responsive, and knows what he wants.
    Eric provided me with everything I needed to complete his recording and made it fun along the way, he was open to new ideas, and made me feel very comfortable. His music is tight, very well recorded and hes had obviously been doing thisnfor years. I'll be happy and lucky to work with him again.

  8. Review by Glenn Welman
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    It was a pleasure to work with Eric. An excellent buyer and I hope to work with him again soon!

  9. Review by Hugo Ribeiro
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    Awesome musician and human being to work with! 5 STARS!

  10. Review by Hugo Ribeiro
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    First time working with Eric and it was smooth as butter! Great guy and a pleasure to work with. Hope to work again in the future. 5 Stars

Interview with Eric Kalina

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

  2. A: I've been a musician for 25 years and a music producer for 12. For the most part, everything I'd learned pre-2016 was basically on-the-fly. I grew up playing tunes in garages with guys sharing the same passion to jam. This naturally led to me playing in bar bands and grinding on the Central, IL scene for years. Eventually, my focus shifted to music production as I loved being in the studio as a musician. After a handful of years working on independent recordings, I made the choice to attend & graduate from the Conservatory of Recording Arts & Sciences in 2016. This was an amazing experience because it helped me to learn more of the scientific side of sound engineering. Prior to this, I just went into the field and started hanging mics on any session I could work on. It was great experience but learning the "how's & why's" behind the science was amazing. After graduation, I did an internship at Sweetwater Studios in Ft. Wayne, IN. This was an awesome experience as I had the opportunity to assist on sessions varying from Pro Tools clinics, to ad recording for local companies, voice over work, mic shootout sessions, and more. I had the opportunity to be a part of sessions with artists from America's Got Talent, to Richie Faulkner from Judas Priest, to a re-recording of "Hotel California" hosted by Don Felder of The Eagles. It was invaluable experience to be a part of such great team. This would then lead to a relocation to Hollywood, CA and an eventual career with Blue Microphones. While working for Blue, we had the opportunity to shadow product demo sessions for artists varying from Ray Parker Jr. to Filter frontman Richard Patrick. During the same timeframe, I also played bass in an original heavy metal/metalcore project. This was short lived but we were very fortunate to headline the Whisky-a-Go-Go the only time we played there. We also had a music video release that was featured on Schecter Guitars main website for a short while. I'm very blessed to have had these opportunities and it has helped me to be a better producer, musician, and colleague. Since then, I've moved on to full-time work under my own business Spectral Fire Audio, located in Mesa, AZ. It's been quite an interesting trip to say the least and I wouldn't change a thing!

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

  4. A: I generally love all music but I grew up a heavier rock guy. As a musician, I'd say some of my main influences would be: Van Halen, Led Zeppelin, Faith No More, Beastie Boys, Deftones, 311, Incubus, Zebrahead, The Used, Story of the Year, and many others. I've also been heavily influenced by our local scene. There have been so many great bands & musicians doing their own thing. It was always cool to see a new group pop up and rock our faces off! As far as production professionals, where do I start? Anytime I listen to something that sounds ultra-polished & fantastic, that's inspiring to me as a mixer. To me, that's the culmination of all of the hard work that went into the production. If I listen to something that sounds raw and unpolished, it's inspiring to me because you can hear the organic vibe of what's being created in the moment. It feels like I'm sitting in the room with an artist or band. I think there's a place for all production styles out there. I'm inspired by anyone who can do this work. Myself personally, pros (in no order) like: Michael Wagener, Andy Wallace, Steve Albini, Ted Templeman, Colin Richardson, Terry Date, Andy Sneap, Sylvia Massey, Jeff Moll, Elvis Baskette, Taylor Larson, Joey Sturgis, Adam Getgood, Zakk Cervini, Jordan Valeriote, and on and on. There are countless amazing production professionals out there doing great things!!

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

  6. A: I'm proud of every project that I've been a part of. I hold one (Aterra Tale) a bit more close to the heart as I was also a performing member. This was one project where I pulled double duty as the producer and bassist/backing vocalist. The first 2 records we released helped propel us to a stop on the Rockstar Energy Drink Uproar Festival. That was really exciting. Overall though, I love hearing the quality of work progress with clients over the years. This is a never ending learning experience and I work everyday to improve my skillset to help serve you better. I love it all!

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

  8. A: There are many irons in the fire currently. Aside of client work, I've been working on a solo/collaboration EP of covers and originals. It's been great playing in a 1 or 2-man band. It's a nice chance to cut loose a little and have some fun in an artist capacity! I'm also creating production tools for DIY producers of all experience levels. From drum & snare sample packs, to recording/mixing templates, sound FX, bass drops, impacts, loops, etc. I'm also creating unique custom packs for clients per request. There are lots of cool things happening! Stay tuned!

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

  10. A: Anyone that I've collaborated with so far, has gone above-and-beyond for me. They are all true professionals and I'd highly recommend any of them.

  11. Q: Analog or digital and why?

  12. A: I dig both for so many different reasons. To keep it simple: analog for vibe and digital for convenience. It's the best of both worlds. I don't care how we get to the end result as long as it sounds awesome and my client is happy. At the end of the day, a good song is a good song regardless of gear.

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

  14. A: We will work until you're 1000% happy!

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

  16. A: I love the freedom to work with all artists who are passionate about their craft! There's nothing more satisfying than seeing the smile on a client's face when you deliver the results they desire. Being able to help others become their best version of themselves, is the ultimate reward for me.

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

  18. A: Can you help us to sound like "_____"? I can help you sound like you. I will do everything in my power to help you achieve the sound in your head! Yes, I can help you sound similar to a reference, however, I try to find the best things about YOUR band/song to make you stand out uniquely. I'm not trying to imitate any band or producer.

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

  20. A: I'd say...that this is a hobby.

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

  22. A: What is it that helped you consider me as an option for your art? Was it a certain production, technique, drum sound, etc, that you liked? What is your deadline? How many tracks are we working with? What is your end goal with your project? How serious would you like to take your are we working a demo or a polished production? There are many others as well, but this is a good starting point for me to help you gauge your expectations. It helps me to plan out the best plan of attack unique to your project.

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

  24. A: It's ok to not entirely know what it is you're looking for. However, having a well thought out idea of where you'd like to end up, will drastically help move the process along. That being said, I take great pride in helping you with anything that your song/idea needs regardless of how long it takes. Art is not a race. If it can be done, I can and will help you.

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

  26. A: Laptop, 2-Channel Interface, Electric Guitar, Electric Bass, & SM57...assuming the cables to hook them up are included by default. Do we have power on said island....? That's the real question :)

  27. Q: How would you describe your style?

  28. A: Evolving. I like to try something new on every project I work on. I'm not much for keeping things the same as every song or artist requires different attention. However, there are some basic exceptions to this such as using "templates" for consistency purposes across a full-album or EP. With that being said, I'm not going to reach for the same sounds for every artist I work with. I'm personally not a fan of every band and artist sounding exactly the same sonically. My intention is to allow your unique creativity and talent shine through.

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

  30. A: I like working with anybody who shares the same passion about music. I take this work very seriously and I love to work with artists who do too. If we're talking well-known established artists, it would've been EVH (RIP). I was introduced to the debut VH album as a 3-year old and something about their sound really grabbed ahold of me and never let go. They became a huge inspiration for anything music in my life.

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

  32. A: Don't be afraid to try anything as there are no rules!

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

  34. A: Anything hard-hitting and heavy. I love me some loud and slamming bands/artists.

  35. Q: What's your strongest skill?

  36. A: I'd say the passion to help others sound their best!

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

  38. A: Passion, perspective, & heart.

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

  40. A: I will establish clear communication with an artist to discuss all their needs. I'll make sure that we have a clear outline of their production and how it will be handled step-by-step. Once we have these details locked down, we get right to work on their vision. If I'm mixing a track, I'll have the artist provide me the required files and info relevant to the final product desired. When I have something that I'm feeling good about, I'll send a reference mix to the artist to hear. We'd then go over any revisions needed to make sure they're happy. Once the mix is "signed off on", I'll proceed to the mastering if hired to do so. Otherwise, I'll provide the final 2-track mix (and any other versions) that can be sent to a dedicated mastering engineer. If I'm working a mobile recording or editing, etc, this process is basically the same. We'll discuss all of the details relevant to their needs ahead of time. We'd get the game plan together, then right to work. Nothing is completed until they're happy!

  41. Q: Tell us about your studio setup.

  42. A: I use an analog/digital hybrid setup. It's fully equipped for on-location recording as well as in-house mixing & mastering. I tend to track using analog preamps but otherwise, I work mostly in the box for flexibility. I also utilize my analog pres to sweeten up my 2-track mix in realtime. Otherwise, it's more practical in my scenario to mix in the box. Due to utilizing a remote rig, I don't really have a static outboard setup to use for patching/processing beyond the sweetening mentioned above. This is where I prefer the convenience of digital in mixing.

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

  44. A: Typically, I'm a mixing/mastering engineer for most heavy genres. However, I also co-produce, arrange, edit, etc as needed. I also program drums for songwriting sessions for DIY artists who may need assistance in this department.

SFA - Mixing Preview

I was the Mixing/Mastering Engineer in this production

Terms Of Service

Turnaround time typically 3-5 business days but may vary slightly. It's not uncommon to finish before this timeline but I don't want to over-promise.

Up to 3 revisions per service offered above.

Gear Highlights
  • Consists of an analog/digital hybrid setup for maximum sound and flexibility.
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  • All Spectral Fire Audio links now on Linktree!Jun 29, 2022

    Just a quick update.  You can check out all that Spectral Fire Audio has to offer here:

  • New Website Now Live!Jun 28, 2022

    Hi everyone,

    I'm excited to announce that the new Spectral Fire Audio site is now live!  It's an exciting day to say the least.  Thank you for your support and have a killer week!  Feel free to check it here: