Born in New Jersey and raised in California and Hawaii, Arielle will release her next album ‘Analog Girl In A Digital World’ on 7 May 2021. Arielle recorded half of the album in digital and the other half on tape, and in this MetalTalk podcast episode she explains her love of all things analogue and retro.
The album features the sounds from her self built guitar, ‘Two-Tone’ as well as the ‘The Arielle’, a signature guitar designed with and released by Brian May Guitars (due March 2021).
Arielle was discovered by guitarist Nuno Bettencourt in 2010 and since then has toured throughout the US and UK with Heart, Joan Jett, Graham Nash, Country Joe McDonald, Joe Bonamassa, Guns N’ Roses, members of Deep Purple, Billy Ray Cyrus, Eric Johnson, Gregg Allman and Cee Lo Green.
Arielle was subsequently handpicked by Queen’s Brian May for a key role in the London-based musical ‘We Will Rock You’.
In this episode, Arielle spoke with MetalTalk’s Sid Kissinger, about recording her album and how her love for the feel of the recording processes in the 60’s and 70’s, drove her desire for how ‘Analog Girl In A Digital World’ should sound.
There is plenty of geek talk too. Which microphones are best to capture the sound she wants? What amp rig does she have? Pedals? String gauge, even?
Like with any professional, the devil is in the detail and Arielle shares her philosophy which has lead to her success.
On recording the soul of the songs:
“The whole band recorded the songs live in one take. Almost all the vocals are completely live while I am playing guitar. When you start altering performances and moving tracks, ‘oh, well, they are a little bit late, so I will just fix that’, they end up fixing a lot more than one note. Then you have something that is a robot.
“When things are super polished, you lose the soul element of the music, the humanness.”
On the UK:
“I have always had a love of England, the culture and a lot of the music history. Of course, my favourite bands were from the UK. Diehards like me, we just want to see what is in the water, you know, see what it is all about; understand the influences of where music came from by living there physically.
“Ever since I was 18 years old I have lived on and off in the UK.”
On her guitar, Two Tone:
“So I built a guitar named Two Tone about, I guess, 13 years ago now. There is a very distinct difference between when you buy a guitar and when you have built one.
“I pick up Two Tone and every time, I always think of how special it is and how lucky I am. It is very special to know that guitar so well.
“I always say the guitar taught me to play – I have had to learn what works for it. And when I don’t play Two Tone, I do not think I sound like me anymore.”
On co-designing her own guitar with Brian May:
“We met up for lunch when I was touring the UK about three years ago, and I was telling him about the guitars I was going to be making. These guitars were for fans and he said ‘why doesn’t Brian May guitars do it?’
“I was freaking out inside, but trying to pretend I was cool. We have had very hilarious arguments about woods, pots and capacitors.
“I mean really geeky stuff sometimes. Really, it is a collaboration of something new – his guitar and my guitar together. I think that is really cool.”