Billboard Music Cities: Las Vegas - Top Studios

Where music's big guns and upstarts capture the magic.

Studio at the Palms

4321 W. Flamingo Road

Wired into the Pearl Theater for impeccable live recording, this space was built into the hotel's design and not as an afterthought-and it shows. The two-studio setup--one for live recording and mixing, another for just mixing or beat-making--has attracted the likes of Jay-Z, Beyonce, Justin Timberlake and many other A-list artists to record there. That it also offers discounted rates to unsigned acts is a testament to director Zoe Thrall's passion for music. "We love the Studio at the Palms," Imagine Dragons singer Dan Reynolds says. "You can't get more classic Vegas than a studio at the top of a hotel and casino. It's where we recorded almost all of 'Night Visions' and most of our earlier music. The staff and gear are amazing."

 

Battle Born

3111 S. Valley View Blvd.

Since the Killers bought this studio in 2008, its two control rooms, two isolated recording rooms, one live room large enough to accommodate 40 musicians and one piano room have served as home base for the creation of that band's albums and side projects, and also welcomed such friends as Elton John and Motley Crue. "It's probably not the best recording studio, but it's our recording studio," Killers drummer Ronnie Vannucci Jr. says. "It's our place, and there are no clocks on the walls there either."

 

Digital Insight Recording

2810 S. Maryland Parkway

When in town, Gary Richards (aka DJ Destructo) prefers working at this two-studio setup--one room for live tracking, the other for mixing and production. Boasting clients like Kanye West, Lil Wayne, Celine Dion and Rihanna, the shop's strength lies in its 20 years of experience, studio manager/mastering engineer Mike Lavin says. "We were the big studio in town before the Palms," he says. "We still kind of run like a small business, and we're all very musical over here."


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