We talk to Scott Horscroft, the visionary mastermind behind The Grove Studios

Nestled in Australia’s serene heart rests a hidden gem, where Scott Horscroft is quietly shaping music.

Meet Scott Horscroft, the founder of The Grove Studios, engineer, producer extraordinaire who is responsible for a large chunk of the music coming out of Australia, all done from amid the stunning landscape of Niagara National Parks in NSW.

We caught up with Scott to unearth the haven’s origin – where creation, collaboration, and inspiration reign.

scott horscroft grove studios

Back in the day, it was Mangrove Studios that got the ball rolling, built by INXS’s Gary Garry Beers. But as time went on, it morphed into what we now know as The Grove Studios.

Scott’s own journey through Sydney’s vibrant music scene has earned him somewhat of a cult following. His early jaunt as the owner of Big Jesus Burger, seamlessly blends with The Grove’s narrative.

Stepping into various roles, from producer to engineer, he’s turned music into an unwavering passion, palpable in Studio 1’s air.

Grove studios

What’s wild is how The Grove’s sound isn’t just about knobs and dials; it’s entwined with the surroundings. Every nook, every view, it’s all in sync – a dynamic that’s pushed acts like Birds Of Tokyo and Violent Soho to drop albums that are real game-changers.

With three studios on the go, giving voice to seasoned and emerging artists, and an academy that is fostering the next generation of engineers and producers,  The Grove Studios is not your average run of the mill recording studio, it’s fast tracking to become one of Australia’s most influential and iconic studios of the 21st century.

Grove Studios

Happy: The Grove Studios has undoubtedly etched its mark on the music landscape. Can you provide a glimpse into the early days—how did this sonic haven come into existence, and what motivated you to embark on this remarkable journey? 

Scott: The Grove Was originally called Mangrove Studios and was built by Gary Garry Beers from INXS, the original studio (now studio 2) was a part of the main residence.

The studio was expanded in the early 2000’s with the addition of the incredibly purpose built Studio 1. 

It was built around a 56 Channel 1984 SSL console, with the accommodation, pool and spa house built around stunning watering holes at the mountain top of the 25 acre property. 

Since its launch it has been home to leading producers and engineers and many historically important records have been written, recorded or mixed there from artist such as Silverchair to The Presets, DZ Death Rays to Dune Rats, DMA’s to Julia Jacklin have all called The Grove a creative home at some stage.

Happy:  From lime-washed archways to panoramic vistas, The Grove Studios’ setting is unique and inspiring. Could you share how the studio’s inception aligns with the vision you had for creating a space where artists could craft their musical visions in harmony with nature?

Scott: After owning BJB Studios in Surry Hills for nearly a decade I started making records overseas in residential studios and realised the benefit of removing yourself from the day to day distractions of life and focusing on making incredible art uninterrupted and inspired  by the natural surroundings.

When the Grove became available 10 years ago we set our sights on creating the perfect creative space with all the equipment and instruments needed to live out the record making dream. 

There is a magic in a purpose built creative space that cant be replicated, it’s a space for creative freedom and collaboration.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by The Grove Studios (@thegrovestudios)

Happy:  Becoming an engineer or producer often involves a series of serendipitous events. Can you recount your individual paths that led you to The Grove Studios, and what elements of your personal journey have contributed to your collective expertise?

Scott: I cut my teeth in music production in Surry Hills Sydney in the early 2000’s when the scene was overflowing with incredible music, artists and culture. 

Artists were experimenting and searching for new sounds and building fresh ideas.

I became addicted to this energy, working with artists to define a sound and explore new ideas became a passion.

This passion continues today and can be seen and heard at The Grove Studios.

Happy:  Within the hallowed halls of The Grove Studios, you’ve nurtured the sounds of icons like Birds Of Tokyo and Violent Soho. How does the studio’s atmosphere infuse itself into the DNA of the music, and what distinctive qualities does it add to the sonic tapestry?

Scott: I think the obvious quality is the sound quality, SSL console, vintage and modern microphone, no expense spared focus on equipment and instruments. Secondly I think that the artist has the space, time and focus to achieve the vision they set out to achieve. The studio and its surroundings don’t distract from the creative vision, they enhance.

Happy:  Studio 1 boasts the legendary SSL G series console, a vessel that has witnessed the birth of countless sonic marvels. Could you share a pivotal moment when this console breathed life into a song, forever etching itself into the artist’s journey? 

Scott: The console is just awesome, legendary and a real work horse. 

It’s the perfect console for the space and gives you a seamless workflow. 

Given the 56 main faders and many more inputs there is never a case when there’s no more room for another part.

It’s also the perfect console to accommodate the massive arrangement of vintage outboard gear and FX units.

Some incredible mixes have filled the console from Birds of Tokyo to The Presets, for me, nothing beats incorporating a full size analogue console into your mix process. 


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by The Grove Studios (@thegrovestudios)

Happy:  The Grove Studios has both a rich legacy and a commitment to innovation. How do you strike a balance between honouring the studio’s history while embracing modern technology to push the boundaries of sound?

Scott: We do it all, we have state of the art modern equipment mixed in the absolute gems of the analogue era.

I think it’s the hybrid of the 2 worlds that make for unique outcomes, which we achieve by keeping cutting edge technologies in our arsenal which aid the use of or vintage equipment. 

Happy:  Studio 2, ‘The Harmonic Haven,’ thrives as both a recording space and an educational realm. Could you elaborate on the unique challenges and rewards of teaching and fostering creativity within this immersive environment? 

Scott: The Grove Studios Academy was born from seeing the incredible young assistants joining us at The Grove and building their skills and experience to then become successful professional engineers and producers, we developed the Academy around enhancing this experience.

The Diploma and Advanced Diploma give students a broad understanding of the music industry while giving access to one of Australia’s leading recording spaces.

The classroom is what makes it totally unique, every student gets a workstation that is situated around the Harrison Console in studio 2 control room, it’s an incredible learning environment.

Happy:  The natural surroundings play a role in the studio’s magic. How does this symbiotic relationship between nature and music translate into your role as engineers and producers? How do you capture the essence of the environment within the music you work on?

Scott: Students walk outside the classroom into the most spectacular natural environment, giving them space to hang out together, get away from it all or set up a huge PA and have an outdoor concert.

The collaborations and culture that has been inspired by The Grove Studios and Academy continues to grow and we pass on the knowledge to the next generation of creatives, producers and engineers.

Happy:  The Grove Studios Academy stands as a hub for aspiring professionals. Could you share a story of a student who underwent a transformative journey through the academy’s programs and emerged with a newfound understanding of sound production?

Scott: The current in house engineers at The Grove Studios, Connor Massey and Jack Lovell are both graduates of The Grove Studios Academy.

Their dedication to writing, recording, producing and mixing is just insane. 

Watching their journey has been inspiring, from student to intern to assistant and now head engineers, the proof is in the pudding when you see Connor and Jack leading a session on the SSL, recording to 24 track tape and making the roof rattle, its just wonderful!!

Happy:  Studio 3 offers an oasis for creative retreats and film soundscapes. Can you recount a moment when an artist harnessed this unique setting to elevate their craft and create a sonic landscape that resonated deeply with the intended audience?

Scott: Studio 3 is a dedicated production and mixing space, it’s where I do all my final mixes, it’s just the perfect private listening environment, the acoustic treatment is awesome yet it’s filled with light and a view to the ocean. 

Many records have been finalised in this space, along with film mixes and dolby atmos mixes of all shapes and sizes.

Happy:  As custodians of The Grove Studios’ sonic legacy, how do you ensure that the music created here continues to reverberate in the hearts of listeners, transcending trends and echoing across generations? 

Scott: We are dedicated to making the space and environment the perfect space for artists and producers, we work tirelessly to stay connected to the cutting edge of music culture while giving back what we have learnt of the decade making music.

With this enthusiasm for making magic happen we aim to inspire the next generation of artists.

Happy:  Collaborating with a diverse array of artists, from seasoned professionals to emerging talents, must present its own set of challenges and opportunities.

Could you describe a collaboration that particularly pushed your creative boundaries and yielded remarkable results? 

Scott: Every record that is made is a creative challenge, boundaries are pushed, the pot is stirred and magic is made.

It’s the freedom that The Grove offers that tends to lead artists to experiment and learn, find new ways and discover new ideas that help break down boundaries.  

Happy: The upcoming Open Day on September 9th promises a firsthand experience of The Grove Studios’ magic. What can attendees anticipate discovering about the art of engineering and producing, and how does this event exemplify the studio’s ethos of embracing curiosity and creativity? 

Scott: Everyone will have the opportunity to join us to walk through the amazing grounds of The Grove Studios and tour our classroom and studios, all teaching and studio staff will also be onsite to share their knowledge of the studios and courses. 

There will also be live music from one of our amazing students and the best sausage sizzle in the central coast. 


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by The Grove Studios (@thegrovestudios)