“There is a creative trust in knowing you’re working on an SSL”.
Luca Pretolesi and partner Ronnie Lee of mixing, mastering and studio design company Studio DMI (Study of Digital Music Innovation), rely on a Solid State Logic Matrix Console/Controller to deliver EDM heat for the company’s development project at Wynn Studio. The luxury hotel complex is home to a literal who’s who of A-list DJs performing in its suite of world class clubs and the location of Wynn Studio, an EDM production/recording studio designed and built by Pretolesi. With the hotel’s world-renowned clubs featuring the talents of artists such as Avicii, David Guetta, Afrojack, Deadmau5, Zedd, R3hab, Diplo, Dillon Francis and Jermaine Dupri, building a private space for these artists to use for tweaking current projects and creating the next generation EDM tracks became obvious. Employing an SSL Matrix was equally obvious for Pretolesi as was his choice of the Sigma Remote Controlled Summing Engine, which he uses at Studio DMI’s own workspace.
“In the beginning we looked at different options to find a compact console because Wynn Studio has great acoustics, but lives in a small space,” says Pretolesi. “The idea was to create a studio that was multifunctional and could service the needs of EDM/Dance DJs and the way they like to work. What led us to Matrix was the incredible amount of powerful features packed into a small frame. Total Recall™ was a must for us because we needed to be fast and able to jump from one session to another within a few minutes. The analogue summing side was essential because I was looking for a proper analogue mixer. The added bonus with Matrix is that it also has excellent DAW controller capabilities. The full integration of these items was the selling point of the Matrix.”
Pretolesi is the founder/engineer of Studio DMI also located in Las Vegas, and a Grammy-nominated EDM mixing/mastering engineer who has worked with the likes of Tiësto, Skrillex, Diplo, Lil Jon, Major Lazer, Bruno Mars, Iggy Azalea, Morgan Page, Calvin Harris, Pharrell Williams, 2 Chainz, Macklemore and Imagine Dragons, to name but a few. It is this pedigree that landed the job of designing and installing Wynn Studio. Pretolesi is known for his artistic touch and fresh approach to bring the highest level of quality to each project. For Studio DMI’s location, Pretolesi has added an SSL Sigma, which provides 32 channels of remote controllable SSL summing to his mixing/mastering rig.
“The Sigma at Studio DMI’s location gives me the same summing amplifiers that are found in Matrix,” continues Pretolesi. “We deal with an avalanche of in-your-face-types of sounds with EDM, so having the capability to hear the full range of what is there to make accurate, informed sonic decisions is critical for both facilities. The SSL sound is very transparent but has depth and character, and is capable of handling our extreme transients. This is essential for producing EDM. For Wynn, Matrix is also easy to use. Many times we will offer an assistant engineer for routing and patching support, and then let the clients do their thing. Sometimes different artists might collaborate and handle a session themselves without help. Once they are familiar with Matrix, these sessions progress nicely. When the artists come into the room they like seeing the Solid State Logic name. There is a creative trust in knowing you’re working on an SSL.”
Pretolesi and Lee, CEO of European Music Market, the parent company of Studio DMI and an entertainment service company providing management, business, studio, publishing and marketing services in the music industry, also offer experienced engineers an extended workshop in the subtleties of creating compelling EDM productions. These presentations are based on the over 25-years of experience Pretolesi has gained creating various techniques for mixing EDM.