Soho Square Studios restores sound for Status Quo doc

Soho Square Studios has completed audio restoration work and a 5.1 surround sound mix on Hello Quo, a new feature-length documentary about seminal British rock band Status Quo.
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Soho Square Studios has completed audio restoration work and a 5.1 surround sound mix on Hello Quo, a new feature-length documentary about seminal British rock band Status Quo. The documentary combines never-seen-before archive from across Europe with well-known footage such as 1985’s Live Aid concert, all intertwined with exclusive interviews with the band’s recently reunited original line-up of Francis Rossi, Rick Parfitt, Alan Lancaster and John Coghlan. For Soho Square Studios, the biggest challenge on Hello Quo was piecing the various audio elements together into a cohesive whole. Stretched videotape, unusable audio tracks, wow and flutter, as well as a myriad of different frame rates to contend with added to the challenge. “In some cases the original audio was so bad that I had to go back to CD recordings and post-sync the whole performance,” said Soho Square Studios sound engineer Edward Sutton (pictured, right). “Because the tape had been worn out over time I had to actually replace the audio bit by bit. You couldn’t just replace the whole track.” The 5.1 mix was jointly completed by Sutton and Soho Square Studios’ senior engineer Simon Capes: “My main job was to show respect to the audio’s origins,” said Capes. “There’s lots of restored audio and lots of well known music. Converting it to 5.1 was all about keeping true to the original sound.” Director Alan G. Parker (pictured, left), whose credits include Who Killed Nancy? and Monty Python: Almost the Truth (The Lawyers’ Cut), praised Soho Square Studios for helping to take his film to the next level: “What you see on screen is essentially what we brought back from the edit,” he said. “But it was desperate for a good sound mix. I always say, we take a film out of edit and it’s like a finished car. But a finished car with no paint, no glass and no number plate. By the time it hits the streets it has the paint and the glass and the number plate. That is what those guys [at Soho Square Studios] do. It’s not a different movie now but it still sounds like a different movie even though my story hasn’t changed. It’s my movie but it’s much slicker.” Hello Quo will premier in cinemas across the UK for a special one-night-only screening on 22 October 2012. www.sohosquarestudios.com

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