Fusion Audio Solutions
By Greg Hartman
Two years ago we checked in with Taylor Riley, who had started a recording studio in his house. That was a result of 16 years of recording his and others’ music, including Gnar, Zolopht, and Jack + Jill. At the end of 2016, it seemed Taylor was about to become a driving force in the Grand Valley Music scene. He not only met those expectations, he mastered them and reordered them to sound better.
Starting as a violinist, then guitarist and now drummer, Taylor has been involved in music for over 18 years. One of his first bands to make a mark on the valley was with the heavy metal band Excessum, when he moved to the drums because no one else was available. He continues to drum for Jack + Jill’s full band shows and has also joined Awaiting Eternity, getting him back to his metal roots. Additionally, he has provided session work on many albums he has produced, lending his skill on violin, drums, bass, or guitar. His musical talent is a big part of what makes Taylor stand out.
Taylor has branded his studio as Fusion Audio Solutions, a one stop location for recording, mixing, and mastering music. He has worked on over 70 projects, including voice over work for an MTV reality show and the final recordings of Jazz pianist Walt Smith. It is rare to see a month go by without an album credit for Taylor Riley showing up in Grand Valley Live. He recorded and produced Sworn Us Under’s The Stone Man, as well as several releases from the Tankerays. He mastered Straygrass’s Live from the Radio Room, as well as the Company’s Venus EP. One more to definitely check out is the musical recording of children’s book A to Z: Animals Get Funky, featuring many of the Grand Valley’s best voices.
Recently, Taylor has found a new mentor in Gary Smith. Smith has been recording music for a long time, including running his own record label that continues to generate income. Riley is being trained to take over Smith’s local recording duties that include the Grand Junction Symphony and other live events. He also got a feed of some of Local Jam 18, which he plans to make available to artists when he gets some extra time to mix the results. Despite that full workload, Riley considers himself almost retired at 34, since he works for himself out of his house. He notes, this is what I see many retired people doing - continuing to do what they love after they quit working their regular jobs.
To make the home business work, though, has required thousands of hours and dollars of investment. When approaching the outside of Fusion Audio Solutions, one sees just another simple 3 bedroom house not too different from the many clones in the subdivision. Upon entering, the nature of the business is revealed. A full drum kit is set up in the living room, as well as a rack of electric guitars. Sofas are placed around a large screen, creating a small lobby area. The room continues into a kitchen with a breakfast island that has been turned into a reception area with various music related business cards and past copies of GVL. The room has a final addition, with a fully remodeled arcade cabinet that features hundreds of game options. The lobby/living room/recording area is designed to allow bands to hang out while other recording areas are being utilized.
The primary recording station is found in a bedroom that has been converted. Several speakers surround several monitors and a powerful computer, as well as a reel to reel recording option that is going to be used for the second round of the acoustic Tubes and Tape series. The walls are decorated with sound dampening panels and album artwork of completed projects, which Riley points out is now out of room. The room is also used for guitar recording, allowing quick feedback from the monitors.
A second bedroom has been converted for voice recording. The level of sound dampening in the room borders on extreme, enough to introduce a small level of discomfort at the lack of ambient noise. The center focus of the room is on a microphone in front of a screen linked to the recording station on video, with audio coming from headphones. I used this room over a year ago to record show dates for a radio show and the difference in just that amount of time is impressive.
Taylor’s musical background and recording experience, matched with a top of the line recording setup allow Fusion Audio Solutions to be a premiere recording location in the Grand Valley. Whenever I have interviewed bands about their new albums, Taylor’s name comes up for his attention to detail and high standards. Every band says that they come out playing better and understand their own sound dynamics better through the recording process. This is bringing in return clients, including The NC-17’s and Mount Orchid, who are working on releases for early next year.
Check out fusionaudiosolutions.com for more information on recording, music lessons, and hourly rates.