Martin Birch is a British former music producer and sound engineer, who became renowned for engineering and producing albums by the British rock bands Deep Purple, Rainbow, Whitesnake, Black Sabbath, and Iron Maiden.
An audio engineer helps to produce a recording or a live performance, balancing and adjusting sound sources using equalization and audio effects, mixing, reproduction, and reinforcement of sound. Audio engineers work on the "...technical aspect of recording—the placing of microphones, pre-amp knobs, the setting of levels. The physical recording of any project is done by an engineer ... the nuts and bolts." It's a creative hobby and profession where musical instruments and technology are used to produce sound for film, radio, television, music, and video games. Audio engineers also set up, sound check and do live sound mixing using a mixing console and a sound reinforcement system for music concerts, theatre, sports games and corporate events.
Deep Purple are an English rock band formed in Hertford in 1968. The band is considered to be among the pioneers of heavy metal and modern hard rock, although their musical approach changed over the years. Originally formed as a progressive rock band, the band shifted to a heavier sound in 1970. Deep Purple, together with Led Zeppelin and Black Sabbath, have been referred to as the "unholy trinity of British hard rock and heavy metal in the early to mid-seventies". They were listed in the 1975 Guinness Book of World Records as "the globe's loudest band" for a 1972 concert at London's Rainbow Theatre, and have sold over 100 million copies of their albums worldwide.
Rainbow are a British rock supergroup led by guitarist Ritchie Blackmore, active from 1975 until 1984, 1993 until 1997, and 2015 until present. They were originally established with Ronnie James Dio's American rock band Elf, but after their first album, Blackmore fired the backing members and continued with Dio until 1979. Three British musicians joined in 1979—singer Graham Bonnet, keyboardist Don Airey and then-former Deep Purple bassist Roger Glover—and this line-up gave the band their commercial breakthrough with the single "Since You Been Gone". Over the years Rainbow went through many personnel changes, with each studio album recorded with a different lineup, and leaving Blackmore as the band's only constant member. The singers Joe Lynn Turner and Doogie White followed Bonnet, and numerous backing musicians have come and gone. In addition to Blackmore, Rainbow's current lineup includes Ronnie Romero on vocals, Jens Johansson on keyboards, Bob Nouveau on bass and David Keith on drums.
Martin Birch was born on 27 December 1948 in Woking, Surrey. He began his career in music as an audio engineer with Jeff Beck, Fleetwood Mac and Deep Purple, producing and engineering eleven albums for the latter. In 1980, coming from the "Deep Purple camp",he was called upon by Black Sabbath for Heaven and Hell ; their previous albums had been self-produced and they were happy to let Birch, who had worked with Ronnie James Dio before, produce them. His "bright midrange" on the album is especially noted. In 1981 he began a long tenure working exclusively with Iron Maiden, producing and engineering Killers and retiring from working with other bands for a while.
Woking is a large town in northwest Surrey, England. It is at the southwestern edge of the Greater London Urban Area and is a part of the London commuter belt, with frequent trains and a journey time of approximately 24 minutes to Waterloo station. Woking is 23 miles (37 km) southwest of Charing Cross in central London. Woking town itself, excluding its narrowly contiguous Built-up Area which extends from West End to West Byfleet, has a population of 62,796, and the UK Government has recorded its Built Up Area as 5% more populous than its Borough with 105,367 residents in 2011, the highest in the county.
Surrey is a subdivision of the English region of South East England in the United Kingdom. A historic and ceremonial county, Surrey is also one of the home counties. The county borders Kent to the east, East Sussex and West Sussex to the south, Hampshire to the west, Berkshire to the northwest, and Greater London to the northeast.
Geoffrey Arnold Beck is an English rock guitarist. He is one of the three noted guitarists to have played with the Yardbirds. Beck also formed the Jeff Beck Group and with Tim Bogert and Carmine Appice, he formed Beck, Bogert & Appice.
Birch has also produced and engineered albums for numerous artists, such as Deep Purple-related projects (Rainbow, Paice Ashton Lord, Whitesnake, Roger Glover, Jon Lord), but also Wayne County & the Electric Chairs. On Fleetwood Mac's album Mystery to Me (1973) he is also credited playing acoustic guitar.
Paice Ashton Lord was a short-lived British rock band featuring Deep Purple band members Ian Paice and Jon Lord with singer Tony Ashton. The band was formed in 1976, released its only album in 1977 and broke up in 1978.
Whitesnake are a hard rock band formed in England in 1978 by David Coverdale, after his departure from his previous band Deep Purple. Their early material has been compared by critics to the blues rock of Deep Purple, but they slowly began moving toward a more commercially accessible rock style. By the turn of the decade, the band's commercial fortunes changed and they released a string of UK top 10 albums, Ready an' Willing (1980), Come an' Get It (1981), Saints & Sinners (1982) and Slide It In (1984), the last of which was their first to chart in the US and is certified 2x platinum.
Roger David Glover is a British bassist, songwriter, and record producer. He is best known as the bassist for hard rock bands Deep Purple and Rainbow. Glover wrote the guitar riff on "Maybe I'm a Leo". As a member of Deep Purple, Glover was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in April 2016.
The song "Hard Lovin' Man" from the Deep Purple album Deep Purple in Rock is dedicated to him : "For Martin Birch - catalyst".
Deep Purple in Rock is the fourth studio album by English rock band Deep Purple, released in June 1970. It was the first studio album recorded by the Mark II line-up of Ian Gillan, Ritchie Blackmore, Roger Glover, Jon Lord and Ian Paice.
He retired in 1992, after producing Iron Maiden's Fear of the Dark album. Birch appears in Iron Maiden's music video "Holy Smoke".
Fear of the Dark is the ninth studio album released by English heavy metal band Iron Maiden. Released on 11 May 1992, it was their third studio release to top the UK albums chart and the last to feature Bruce Dickinson as the group's lead vocalist until his return in 1999.
"Holy Smoke" is a song by English heavy metal band Iron Maiden. It is the first single release to feature guitarist Janick Gers, who joined the band in mid-1990. It was released just weeks before the album, No Prayer for the Dying, and climbed to number three on the UK Singles Chart.
Sources: Martin Birch at artistdirect.com, Discogs
Then Play On is the third studio album by British blues rock band Fleetwood Mac, released on 19 September 1969. It was the first of their original albums to feature Danny Kirwan and the last with Peter Green. Jeremy Spencer did not feature on the album apart from "a couple of piano things". The album, appearing after the group's sudden success in the pop charts, offered a broader stylistic range than the classic blues of the group's first two albums. The album went on to reach #6 in the UK, subsequently becoming the band's fourth Top 20 hit in a row, as well as their third album to reach the Top 10. The title is taken from the opening line of William Shakespeare's play Twelfth Night — "If music be the food of love, play on".
Kiln House is the fourth studio album by British blues rock band Fleetwood Mac, released on 18 September 1970 by Reprise Records. This is the first of the post-Peter Green Fleetwood Mac albums, and their last album to feature Jeremy Spencer. Christine McVie was present at the recording sessions and contributed backing vocals, keyboards and cover art, although she was not a full member of the band until shortly after the album's completion.
Bare Trees is the sixth studio album by British-American rock band Fleetwood Mac, released in March 1972. This is their last album to feature Danny Kirwan, who was fired during the album's supporting tour. In the wake of the band's success in the mid-1970s, Bare Trees peaked at No. 70 and achieved Gold status in 1976 and certified platinum in 1988 for selling over a million copies.
Made in Japan is a double live album by English rock band Deep Purple, recorded during their first tour of Japan in August 1972. It was originally released in December 1972, with a US release in April 1973, and became a commercial and critical success.
Mob Rules is the 10th studio album by English heavy metal band Black Sabbath, released in November 1981. It followed 1980's Heaven and Hell, and it was the second and last Black Sabbath studio album to feature lead vocalist Ronnie James Dio prior to the 1992 album Dehumanizer.
The Rolling Stones Mobile Studio was a mobile recording studio owned by the English rock band The Rolling Stones. Numerous bands and artists have recorded music using it, including Dire Straits, Deep Purple, Lou Reed, Bob Marley, Horslips, Nazareth, Fleetwood Mac, Bad Company, Status Quo, Led Zeppelin, Iron Maiden, Wishbone Ash and the Rolling Stones themselves. More recently, the unit has been acquired by the National Music Centre in Calgary.
Philip Neil Murray is a Scottish bass player, best known for his work in Whitesnake, The Brian May Band, Black Sabbath and with Gary Moore.
Cultösaurus Erectus is the seventh studio album by American hard rock band Blue Öyster Cult, released in 1980. Following an experiment with a more-polished sound on the album Mirrors, this recording marked a return to the band's earlier, heavier sound. The first track, "Black Blade", features lyrics by fantasy and sci-fi writer Michael Moorcock and is about Stormbringer, a black sword wielded by Elric of Melniboné, the most famous character in Moorcock's mythology.
Made in Europe is a live album released by Deep Purple, recorded on the final dates in April 1975 before Ritchie Blackmore left Deep Purple. It was released in October 1976, after the group had broken up.
Raymond John Fenwick is an English guitarist and session musician, best known for replacing Steve Howe in the Syndicats, and as the lead guitarist of Ian Gillan's post Deep Purple solo project, the Ian Gillan Band.
Argus is the third album by the rock band Wishbone Ash. It is their most commercially and critically successful album. It peaked at No. 3 in the UK Albums Chart.
Reinhold Mack, also known as Mack, is a German record producer and sound engineer, mostly known for his collaborations with rock bands Electric Light Orchestra and Queen. Most of this work took place at Giorgio Moroder's Musicland Studios in Munich, which became famous after Marc Bolan & T.Rex first discovered it for recordings in 1973. In 1981 the Queen album The Game brought Mack and the band a Grammy Award nomination for Producer of the Year (Non-Classical).
"Fireball" is a song by the English rock band Deep Purple, from the album of the same name. It was Deep Purple's second single release in 1971, and peaked at number 15 on the UK Singles chart. It is one of several songs based on Ian Gillan's real life experiences: "She was a complete mystery to me. This is another tale of unrequited love", he explained.
Bernard John Marsden is an English rock and blues guitarist. He is primarily known for his work with Whitesnake, having written or co-written with David Coverdale many of the group's hit songs, such as "Fool for Your Loving", "Walking in the Shadow of the Blues", "Lovehunter", "Trouble" and the multi-million selling chart-topper "Here I Go Again."
Rises Over Japan is a concert film by the Mark IV of Deep Purple, directed by Tony Klinger and released in 1985.
24 Carat Purple is the first compilation album of the hard rock band Deep Purple released worldwide on their own record company and the third in a long line of compilation albums. It was released in June 1975.
Stackridge is the 1971 debut album by the English group Stackridge. It was one of the first releases on the MCA Records label in the U.K. It first appeared on CD in 1997, released by Demon Records in the U.K. In 2006 it was re-issued again by Angel Air.
Toad was a Swiss hard rock band, formed by ex-Brainticket members in Basel, Switzerland during 1970. Their best known songs were covers of Jimi Hendrix's "Purple Haze" and The Beatles' "I Saw Her Standing There", along with originals "Usin' My Life" and "Stay!". Their first two albums were engineered by Martin Birch.
After the 1969 classical / rock fusion Concerto for Group and Orchestra, Jon Lord was commissioned to write a follow-up. This was Gemini Suite, five long movements inspired by the members of Deep Purple, and performed live in September 1970 at the Royal Festival Hall with The Light Music Society Orchestra. Jon Lord then recorded it in the studio as his first solo project in 1971, with the London Symphony Orchestra conducted by Malcolm Arnold and soloists drawn from the rock world. Gemini Suite was an important step for Lord and led to albums such as Windows (1974) and Sarabande (1976).
First of the Big Bands is a studio album by Tony Ashton of Ashton, Gardner and Dyke and Jon Lord of Deep Purple, released in April 1974 by Purple Records in the UK and Europe and Warner Bros. Records in the US. The project was Ashton's and Lord's brainchild and continuation of their working relationship after Ashton Gardner & Dyke helped out on Jon Lord's soundtrack album The Last Rebel from 1971. Stylistically, First of the Big Bands was the precursor to Paice Ashton Lord's Malice in Wonderland album from 1977. Most of the album was recorded at Air and Apple Studios, London, with additional work being completed at De Lane Lea and Island.
WhoCares, full title Ian Gillan & Tony Iommi: WhoCares, is a music project by Deep Purple frontman Ian Gillan and Black Sabbath guitarist Tony Iommi and a charity release by the supergroup WhoCares they had formed with the help of other musicians, to raise money to rebuild a music school in Gyumri, Armenia after the destruction of the city in the 1988 earthquake in Armenia.