Fronted by the talented female vocalist Taylor Momsen, the New York-based alternative hard rockers The Pretty Reckless, are gearing up to release their eagerly-anticipated new album, Going To Hell, on March 18th via Razor & Tie. Rounded out by musicians Ben Phillips (guitar), Mark Damon (bass), and Jamie Perkins (drums), Going To Hell is the group’s sophomore effort and follow-up to the band’s 2010 release Light Me Up. In order to learn more about the new recording, we were fortunate enough to get some time with Taylor and talk gear!

What one piece of gear do you use to obtain your signature sound?
Momsen: In the studio my favorite piece of gear is Kato’s (our producer) stereo C-12 mic, on stage it’s my band, that is the best instrument.

What about it makes it so important to you?
Momsen: Well, the band is the sound, it just clicks with us. The mic is just so honest and warm, it really doesn’t get in the way of the honesty of what you’re recording.

How was this gear used during the recording of your latest album?
Momsen: It’s on almost everything. There’s a live in the studio version of our song “Cold Blooded” where we just put it between me and Ben (the guitarist) and hit record, it sounded amazing.

How do you recreate your album (guitar/vocal/bass) tones in your live set?
Momsen: What you see is what you hear. No tracks, no loops. It’s guitar bass and drums, a real live rock show.

What are the major pros and cons?
Momsen: It can be limiting with only 3 instruments live at times, so sometimes you have to mess with the arrangements a little to make it work, but I think it’s exciting, no one plays the same thing twice.

Do you have a backup for this gear, if so, what?
Momsen: I wish I had an extra hand or a pair of vocal chords, but I don’t. Everyone else has their backup instruments in case something goes wrong on stage.

How long have you had it, how do you use it, would you ever change it?
Momsen: It’s my voice, and it’s always changing. 🙂

Give us your best “gear goes wrong” story.
Momsen: So many! Being electrocuted on stage is probably the worst fear… it’s really painful.

Any final thoughts or comments on the gear?
Momsen: From the guitars to the mics, we have spent years putting together what works for us, but really it’s all in the hands of the musician. If it’s a good part played well, you don’t need anything else.

Check out the song “Heaven Knows”

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