Drones, impacts, and whooshes, oh my! Some of the most unique sound effects in media come from Radium Sound owner, Russell Nash. Nash and Radium Sound have been partners with Megatrax for quite some time so when it came time to add three new albums to the Megasonics catalog, Nash was the master with a plan.
MX: Sound effects are such a specific niche in music production. How did you find your way into it?
RN: Back in 1999, I was working in music production and answered an ad in The Hollywood Reporter for a production facility that was looking for an engineer/producer experienced with all the digital technology. I ended up at the former ABC radio studio on Cahuenga Boulevard and I walked into a world that I didn’t know existed. I had no idea that there was syndicated radio, sound design, sound effects, and all that sort of thing going on. Part of my job was working with the then-syndicated radio show, Casey Kasem’s American Top 40, as Casey’s recording engineer. After several years of working there, I decided to start my own company, Radium Sound.
MX: What was the journey like from being introduced to a world of sound design to having your own company that specialized in the field?
RN: It was very easy because I had free rein to do whatever I wanted creative wise. I was a natural in the studio already with Pro Tools, Logic, and sound design. I ended up producing hundreds of CDs worth of material for other libraries that were implemented in various radio & TV shows around the country before I formed my own company. Using my musical background and creating my own sounds led to designing my own software to create the sounds.
Megatrax: How did you start working with Megatrax?
RN: Ileana Landon (Senior Division Manager Radio U.S. and Latin America) and I worked on a syndicated radio show. She suggested I reach out to Megatrax, with some of the content that I had been producing. They liked my material and thought it would be good to introduce my company, Radium Sound, to the radio market. I’ve also known JC and Ron for a number of years – going back to 2009.
MX: In these three new sound design/sound effects albums for Megatrax, where did you get the idea for each different album?
RN: Originally, it was only supposed to be a two album release, but I submitted so much material that Ron decided to make it three. We talked about different categories that there needed to be like drones, impacts, and transitions like whooshes. There are a wide variety of sounds and I created so many of them because it was such a fun project.
MX: Is there anything that sticks out to you about these albums that you like the most?
RN: I can’t really choose one specific thing to put over another for these albums. I really like the process. It’s important for me to have a focus of what I’m doing first and then go off of that. I’ve designed and built a custom step sequencer named scanmaster within the environment of Logic Pro that allows me to quickly create lots of beds, drones and rhythmic pulses. I also work with Reaktor by Native Instruments to design unique effects and sample processing instruments. These custom sequencers, instruments and plugins were put to abundant use on this project and helped shape the content of these releases.
The tools that I have allow me to create exactly what I want to. Most people use them on the surface level of what they come with, but I’ve gotten under the hood to create my own custom stuff. These sounds helped shape the content of these releases.
To learn more about Radium Sound and Megatrax, click here!