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Author Topic: IMP15 discussion  (Read 16402 times)

osumosan

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Re: IMP15 discussion
« Reply #45 on: October 23, 2007, 12:17:32 am »

My Notes. As far as I'm concerned, these are opinions and not criticism. These are things I heard as a listened to each mix. I listened against my idea of what the song should evoke, not stylistically, but emotionally. I guess I was listening a bit like a client...

Garrett
Nice tone on guitars. Not too bright, etc. Vox low mid heavy. Drums a bit removed.

slash5969
Yay echo. Sometimes builds up too much and the vox are too overpowering.
Hihat's (over)ruling
sax is buried and in a different song almost. Ditto on the drums.
Nice treatment on the ad lib.
Vox blown out in places.

Greg Dixon
Great overall balance. Snare a bit muffly. Sax here is a bit disembodied. I don't hear it as a solo instrument, so that colors my comment.

Mac Liam
Overall mix needs bottom and air.
Drums are not unified and a too close for an organic song. Kick snare are compressed to a papery sound.

teleric
Individual drum sounds are well crafted but hit a little hard. Lacks either a psychedelic edge or natural intimacy that the song asks for. Voice gets out of control a couple places.

JasonTompson
Needs bottom. Vox is waaay hard. The EQ is so extreme I expected it to be a telephone EQ. I agree that there was a lot of bottom on the track, maybe you over HP'd it. I can't hear a lot of stuff under it. The instrumental underneath is nice and airy though.

ATOR
Hey Kettle! Pot here sayin' too much compression on the drums. And they overpower the other instruments. The long reverb tail effect is cool and I'd love to hear more of it and more consistency of where it is applied, sticking with one or two sonic spaces. I would notch down the vox, too.

CJWall
Another hard treatment. I don't really think the song should be slamming. The mix is each track is wrapped up in its own treatment pulling the mix away from a unified approach.

Jhall
This has got the bottom. And the mix is close and intimate. Floor tom is clipping? Vox? Organ? Bass? Maybe the mix is clipping. The floor is the one track that seems to be disconnected. Are there gates on the toms. Is the release to quick?

SingSing
Reverb on the cave-y side. Could tone that down. It does give the sax a cool mellotron sound. Vox is well balanced overall but still overpowers the instruments. Nice changeup bringing the drums at the end, but I would crush it a little less to accentuate the smallification of them as a whole.

Osumosan
Need to balance the mix to offset the snare and guitar on the right. Maybe put the vox on the left.  Mix needs air. Vocals need some rides. Oh wait, that's me. Shut up, me.

Kellen-Tyburski
Nice selection for intro and build up. The bass is the entire low end and maybe overpowering when it's just the  bass/organ bass/organ/sax.

Audio Geek
No low end in the drums. Sax isn't slotting into the mix quite right. Using the vocals to pump up the mix is a great idea.

cymatics
I like the vox. Psychedelic like I would expect. I might mod it so that some high end could cycle in there. Guitars are nice and dreamy, too. Why not bring in the drums to the phase party at the end! I thought this mix really captured the feeling of the song. I needed a little audio wasabi after this one to listen to the others.

i-Combs
Very sweet and gentle mix--smooth. The snare could be treated a little more naturally. Sax is in a great place.

careful collapse
like the way it dried up after the intro but didn't like the effects coming back so soon in the middle of things in the first stanza. I did like it when it follows the dynamics later on. Well thought out mix, appropriately and deftly beatlesque. I would consider some instruments coming in on "the sea is growing closer"

M Carter
Avoiding the sax, eh? It's a bit too off in the corner even though I agree that it's accompaniment. Best use of the room sound/OH. The high organ sits right in that same room and the snare is snappy and natural.

mcsnare
Has a sound like I'm listening to vinyl. The vox are kept in check. Very polished. I like.

Doug_H
What's that subsonic on the left? The mix is a bit mono. A bit pushed in the high mids on the snare (room?)

darkhorseporter
To me it sounds like everything except the guitars and vox are in a different room.
There's a buzzy resonance in the voice.
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Greg Dixon

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Re: IMP15 discussion
« Reply #46 on: October 23, 2007, 08:58:42 am »

slash5969 wrote on Tue, 23 October 2007 01:07


Thanks for the great tracks, Greg. I didn't have to waste time and energy getting anything to "sound right", and that made it very enjoyable to work with.


j.hall wrote on Tue, 23 October 2007 02:44

my mix is printing now.  thanks greg, sounds were great!


Audio~Geek wrote on Tue, 23 October 2007 12:04


Hey Greg, whats the name of the Band and tune?


I'm really enjoying hearing what you've all done with my work. It's pretty rare for me to not mix what I've tracked.

Ok, so a bit of info that might interest some of you and shouldn't interfere with the reviews.

This started out as an EP for a guy named Chris Stewart.

When he started recording, the only other permanent member of the band, was Tim the drummer. By the time the EP came out, they'd found a permanent bassplayer and become a band Guava. http://profile.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=user.viewpro file&friendID=227105293
The mastered version of my real mix is on their site. The song is called 'Potplants'. I did 'Falling World' that's there too.

The tooty organ part wasn't used in the released version. The producer (Rohan Mansley) and I loved it, but Chris didn't.

There wasn't sax on the song originally. They were ready to master when they decided that as there was now sax in the band it should be on the EP somewhere.
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M Carter

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Re: IMP15 discussion
« Reply #47 on: October 23, 2007, 10:07:48 am »

That explains why the sax doesn't fit then eh?  Smile

I'll get to my reviews later on.  
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J-Texas

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Re: IMP15 discussion
« Reply #48 on: October 23, 2007, 11:22:05 am »

osumosan wrote on Mon, 22 October 2007 23:17

JasonTompson
Needs bottom. Vox is waaay hard. The EQ is so extreme I expected it to be a telephone EQ. I agree that there was a lot of bottom on the track, maybe you over HP'd it. I can't hear a lot of stuff under it. The instrumental underneath is nice and airy though.



Then I guess I did it right!  Very Happy

The vocal and the beat were the biggest things for me. Everything else was literally "light and airy". I wanted the drums and vox to be in your face. I did a high pass on the vox because once I crushed and distorted it, it was noisy under there (big suprise... I know).

It seemed like he was talking about global warming or something. I got the that one plant was dying and one was growing green. Man, I went with it. Dirty vox and drums (like pollution) and the light airy stuff under it (pretty green stuff).

That's how I felt. Thanks for the marks.

Jason
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Jason Thompson
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j.hall

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Re: IMP15 discussion
« Reply #49 on: October 23, 2007, 11:38:36 am »

osumosan wrote on Mon, 22 October 2007 23:17



Jhall
This has got the bottom. And the mix is close and intimate. Floor tom is clipping? Vox? Organ? Bass? Maybe the mix is clipping. The floor is the one track that seems to be disconnected. Are there gates on the toms. Is the release to quick?



toms are edited to just the hits.  perhaps i compressed them too hard and it shows.

although, noticing something like that is much more an engineer thing.  sometimes i just don't care as i realize that that vast majority of listeners won't ever notice that nor care.  something i learned for an andy wallace mixed record that i love.  the snare is gated so hard that every time it hits it sounds like a crash cymbals is hit too.  something we all would call "wrong" but somethng andy knew didn't matter.

not offering an excuse, just trying to add some perspective.

distortion, that's on the bass.  i multed it, sans amped it and blended it back in.  just tried to blow out the perspective a bit.  something i'm a big fan of recently.  not distorted bass per se....blowing out the perspective.

my reviews have started, i'll get them up soon.
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osumosan

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Re: IMP15 discussion
« Reply #50 on: October 23, 2007, 11:47:00 am »

J-Texas wrote on Tue, 23 October 2007 11:22

Dirty vox and drums (like pollution) and the light airy stuff under it (pretty green stuff).


Shocked Oh no! Pollution wins! The apocalyptic mix. Shocked
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M Carter

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Re: IMP15 discussion
« Reply #51 on: October 23, 2007, 11:54:06 am »

osumosan wrote on Mon, 22 October 2007 23:17


M Carter
Avoiding the sax, eh? It's a bit too off in the corner even though I agree that it's accompaniment. Best use of the room sound/OH. The high organ sits right in that same room and the snare is snappy and natural.




I really tried not to avoid the Sax... although in retrospect I wish I would've edited out some his wankier sections in the song. Thanks for the compliments on the drums, I'm really happy with how this one turned out in a lot of ways.
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osumosan

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Re: IMP15 discussion
« Reply #52 on: October 23, 2007, 11:57:32 am »

j.hall wrote on Tue, 23 October 2007 11:38

although, noticing something like that is much more an engineer thing. sometimes i just don't care as i realize that that vast majority of listeners won't ever notice that nor care. something i learned for an andy wallace mixed record that i love. the snare is gated so hard that every time it hits it sounds like a crash cymbals is hit too. something we all would call "wrong" but somethng andy knew didn't matter.


That gets filed under "whatever serves the song," reminding the technician to step back every now and then and let the gestalt rule. One technique I've found successful in mixing my own band is searching out those wacky, uninterpretable comments from the members of the band (I really mean the singer, in my case) who don't have the lexicon to express what they want to hear. That gets me to thinking how something that shouldn't be able to be done can be done.
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Greg Dixon

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Re: IMP15 discussion
« Reply #53 on: October 23, 2007, 06:41:59 pm »

J-Texas wrote on Wed, 24 October 2007 01:22



It seemed like he was talking about global warming or something. I got the that one plant was dying and one was growing green.

Jason


Correct. Global warming is the subject matter.
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maxim

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Re: IMP15 discussion
« Reply #54 on: October 23, 2007, 08:14:25 pm »

i buried the sax totally, but listening to some mixes, i wish i had kept at least a few sections upfront...
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J-Texas

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Re: IMP15 discussion
« Reply #55 on: October 23, 2007, 08:27:04 pm »

maxim wrote on Tue, 23 October 2007 19:14

i buried the sax totally, but listening to some mixes, i wish i had kept at least a few sections upfront...


I second that. If I was trying to complete the thought that I was going for, it needed to come up front when the vox weren't strong!
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Jason Thompson
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Doug_H

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Re: IMP15 discussion
« Reply #56 on: October 23, 2007, 09:22:41 pm »

"What's that subsonic on the left?"

Likely proof that I did a crap job on the keys
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slash5969

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Re: IMP15 discussion
« Reply #57 on: October 23, 2007, 11:18:24 pm »

My notes and comments - keep in mind that I'm new to this whole process, and that I'm here trying to learn. I mean no disrespect to anyone, and just because I liked or disliked something doesn't make it good or bad - it just makes it my rather un-learn-ed opinion. With that being said - here we go.

Garret: I like this mix. Guitars ring out, drums and bass sit well together. I like the air in the vox. Nice job on the ending. I think you "got" the tune.

Greg: You had an unfair advantage - you're obviously much more familiar with the song than the rest of us are. Sax much more up front than I heard it, but man does it work! Nice balance - this mix captures the vibe of the tune perfectly, although I still wanted those "ethereal" vocals. Excellent job - probably my favorite mix of this tune.

Mac: I wanted more air in the vocal. Bass is boomy. I like your drum sounds. Sax weaved in and out rather well. Good ending.

Teleric: Bass was hot enough that it distracted my attention. Vocals missing...something. Did you cut the highs? I like the pop in the snare, and the harmony vox are blended very nicely. I cut some bass and added some treble and this mix came alive. Ending was "busier" than I heard it, but it worked.

J Texas: Crisp drums - I'm diggin' your snare! Clean mix. I like the way you heard the song. Nice balance to everything - I like the presence in the vocals. You used the sax line well. I would have faded that guitar at the end, but I'm sorta pickin' fly shit outta pepper. Another of my favorite takes on this tune.

ATOR: I like the drums - crisp and full. I like the highs in the guitars. I dig the sparseness through the verses, although I missed the keys underneath everything. The swooshing wind thing distracted me a bit, although I like the attempt at some diversity. I missed the melody line during the end passages.

CJ: Live bottom end, but the snare was a distraction. this mix was definately different - I know you went for "rocking", but the tune just struck me as being more delicate. not my cup of tea, but you get kudos for having a unique vision of the song.

Darkhorse: The gunk in the intro was a distraction. Edit out that cough, man! I wanted more life in the guitars through the verses - where did that Nashville go? I got the impression you saw this track a lot "darker" than most of us. I liked the droning keys, but I wanted more air. Nice ending, but pretty busy until the last bar or so.

JHall: Your drums sound good, and they meld well with the bass. Again I'm digging the rather sparse accompanyment during the verses. Everything balances very well - did you ever consider turning pro?  Very Happy  Bass fret noise @ 2:35 threw me - it stood out like a sore thumb in an otherwise seamless mix. Another one of my favorites, and I say that in spite of you being the forum host - not because of it.

Singsing: Where did the drums go? I like the airy vocal and the streamlined vibe, but I wanted drums way before I got them. The "garbage can" snare was a distraction until the bass came in @ 3:38 - then the drums sounded so good that I really missed not having them earlier. I liked the gentle ending, but I missed the sax/melody line there.

Osumosan: Again, good drums! I like the snare a lot. Predominant sax - much more than I heard it. Keys are a bit buried, but it seems to work. More bass than I prefer, but that seems to be a recurring theme in these mixes. The early fade disappointed - I wanted to hear how you handled that end passage.

Typek: Bass hot. Vocal buried a bit. Interesting take on the intro, very clever - except I missed the drums there. I liked the fretless through the ending.

Audio geek: Nice high end, lots of air. Bass again a bit heavy for me, but it's the way it's done apparently. Interesting use of the sax track, much more predominant than I heard it, but it works. Ending a bit busy - less is more sometimes, eh?

Cymatics: Excellent snare! I'm diggin' the pop. Bass heavy again, but I guess I should quit noting it since everyone seems to mix that way. The processed vocals were a distraction - perhaps on alternating lines during the verses? I like the growling keys. I wanted more air in the mix - guitars didn't shimmer, vocals didn't ring. I wanted a gentler ending.

iCombs: Nice balance to this mix. Again I was distracted my the gunk at the beginning. I like the pop in the snare. Solid bottom end without being overpowering, which is easier said than done.

Careful collapse: Hot bass. I like the drone thing through the verses. Nice stereo seperation - the sax jumped out of my left speaker. Verb a bit heavy for my taste, but i did groove on the distance in the vox - I heard them as very ethereal too. This mix held my interest, and I've heard this tune a few hundred times now. Ending was "busy" in a dissonant way - same issue I had when I had everything up til the end.

M Carter: Boomy bass. I wanted more presence in the vocals - i lost that "dreamy" feeling that the song conjures up. The early fade left me feeling cheated - I wanted to hear your take on that ending. I really liked your mix last time out in IMP14, and I was a bit disappointed in this one. "Balz Hanglow" did make me laugh out loud, though.  Laughing

Doug H: This mix was loud. 258K - that's odd. Nice balance though - everything seemed to meld. Drums were a bit "Keith Moon-ish" but it worked. Sax didn't have that "I'm really from a different song" feel to it. Smooth ending.

maxim: I liked the "Leslied" treatment at first, and the way everything dropped out for the verse. Nice bottom end - punchy yet clear and crisp. I liked the dynamics in this mix, although as the song progressed the Leslie thing wore on me after a while. Perhaps if it had been more subtle after the intro? I liked the sparsness of the ending.

mcsnare: After IMP14, I expected to like this mix, and I wasn't disappointed. Crisp drums at the perfect volume. Solid bottom without any boominess. Airy vocals, shimmering and sweet. Nice use of the sax track - it didn't distract my attention and added a nice counterpart to the vox through the chorus. Smooth ending, even with the dissonant lines. Nicely done! Another favorite.
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audio~geek

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Re: IMP15 discussion
« Reply #58 on: October 23, 2007, 11:42:01 pm »

slash5969 wrote on Tue, 23 October 2007 22:18

My notes and comments - keep in mind that I'm new to this whole process, and that I'm here trying to learn. I mean no disrespect to anyone, and just because I liked or disliked something doesn't make it good or bad - it just makes it my rather un-learn-ed opinion. With that being said - here we go.


Audio geek: Nice high end, lots of air. Bass again a bit heavy for me, but it's the way it's done apparently. Interesting use of the sax track, much more predominant than I heard it, but it works. Ending a bit busy - less is more sometimes, eh?



The high end was widened, guess it worked out right.
I'm a bass player, so I like to hear bass, usually I end up doing the opposite though.
You're probably right about the ending. Probably should've dropped the hammond tracks down for the ending, I did very minimal automation on this mix.

garret

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Re: IMP15 discussion
« Reply #59 on: October 24, 2007, 12:05:07 am »

Alright, here's my feedback....  this was all written fairly quickly, so there are likely some typos and mistakes.. ask for a clarification if something doesn't make sense.

One thing to mention.. I listened to the mixes blind while writing up my notes...

Cheers,
-Garret
----------


MIXES I PARTICULARLY LIKE

Singsing/   Ooo, starts nice and warm… I like that.   Nicely balanced from the start… now let’s see what happens when the song kicks in…  Vocal sounds great, up-front, natural, but vibey… still no drums… interesting… I tried that, but chickened out.   I was going to cut them from the intro and first verse, but didn’t out of fear of stepping on the client’s intentions.   When you do bring the drums in, I think your treatment is a touch over-the-top… but aside from that, this is a very good mix… one of my favs.    You’ve made the song a haunting meditation, which is how I heard it too.

Carefull collapse/.   Zeppelin-esque… the panned delay on the vox is groovy…  I’m missing the nashville guitar track… where’d it go?   I just hear one acoustic panned left, and the mix is crying out for something over o   n the right…. You’ve treated every track well in this (eq/compression/etc.) and the spectral balance is very good… this mix works, in its own way.

Jhall/  muscular… I’m listening blind, but I think this is a J hall mix.  (YEP!)   It’s got that clean and crispy but pumped up quality you pull off so well…. I have to say that I think the drums are overpowering this mix a bit… At times, I’m struggling to listen to the vocalist and hear all the other instrumentation… then other times the vox is very hot… seems to jump out of the mix… for this song, I actually like that for the out-of-control feeling it creates… (I left a little of that in mine, though it’s more subtle).  There are some cool little string noises you brought out… cool.

Greg Dixon/   nicely balanced… dynamics are under control but not lifeless… vox is natural and sitting nicely on top of the bed….  Achieves that epic quality that the best mixes get in the last chorus…

Garret/   Yah, that's my mix… good balance… a bit more buzziness in the vox than I’d like to hear.   A few spurious noises that could be edited out.  But I like it.

Teleric/  something boxy about this one, but I’m not sure what’s causing it… maybe the drums… vocal level gets a bit out of control at times… maybe hit it a touch harder with the compressor (first time I think I’ve said that about the vocal in any IMP mix.)   I think the bass is a touch loud… overall though, a good, dynamic mix… I like it.

MIXES IN THE MIDDLE

Maxim/.  Not much space at the start… it's generally a good idea to leave 300 msec or so for people to finish hitting the play button before the music starts… you've got about 50msec.  Mix treatment is a spacey at the start..  acoustic on the left is detached from “the band”… maybe try sending to verb panned right.  Vox is too quiet… bass is a touch loud.  Good spectral balance.    Tasteful, creative touches throughout this mix…  good work.

Mcarter/   A bit of a live sound here… at least the start… kinda, um, clubby.  Drums (especially the hats) are too loud for my tastes.. the vox is getting stepped on at times.  But this is a pretty solid mix.

Icombs/ Overpumped drums…. Honestly, the kick hurts my ears on good headphones.  The studio noise at the beginning is interesting… I like it except the cough… a bit too punk rawk for this music I think.   Something unbalanced and boxy about the mix…. I think you might just want to back off the eq and let the tracks ride as is.

Mcsnare/  did you retune the lead vocal?  I heard a couple notes that changed from the original…  not improvements… the melody flattened out in at least one spot (42 seconds in).   Otherwise, this is a pretty good mix… good spectral balance, dynamics under control… I like it… I just wanna know what happened to the vocal…

Doug H/.   in the intro everything’s kinda narrow and far away…. It’s vibey, yah, but a touch lo fi.    The vocal is getting buried at times, but at other times it's way up front...I like this mix anyway for reasons I can’t really explain.

Mac Liam/  bass is a bit loud and thumpy… personally I don’t think the bass is so smokin that it should be featured so much…  otherwise, the spectral balance is good, and this sounds very professional… good work… just tone down the bass.

ATOR: Muscular but still vibey… good work.    Guitars sound good and the mix is nicely balanced…. Okay except the kick which I think is overpumped, and the hi hat, which I think gets distracting.  Watch the lead vocal… it’s getting dominated at times.

AudioGeek/  bright drums, and the bass is too loud and tubby… the vox is getting buried… otherwise, this is not too shabby…. Just get the balances right and this could be a good mix.

Slash5969/   the delay on the vox is too canned and proggy for my tastes.  I think you’d get away with it if you just did it once or twice… but so often, yah, not so much.    the drums are overpowering the vocals.  I like a lot of this mix, but I can't get past the heavy kick drum and the proggy delay.

Osumosan/  Overpumped drums… big pumpy kick..  good vocal treatment in the verses… clear, natural, and up-front, with a bit of something to back it up (delayed verb?).    But in the choruses, the vocals are getting buried and the bass is way too loud.  The volume balance is erratic in this one... get that right.. it's the most important thing you can do.


MIXES THAT NEED A LOT MORE WORK

cymatics  (IMP15.mp3)/.  Overpumped drums… the kick drum is a moose, and I’m not sure why it needs to be.   But I think I say that every IMP… I’m a nonbeliever in the pumpy kick sound that’s very common in indie stuff now.  Vox is too quiet… but I like the eq and effects treatment… a bit telephony, but the extra vibe is good.  Bass is too loud, and the mix is muddy.

Kellen tyburski/.   Interesting idea for the start… I think it could work, if the bass were brought down a lot in level, and the sax brought down a little… when the song starts up the volume falls off, which seems backwards to me…     Bass is too loud throughout.    The song dynamics are too static.. something clamped down about the arrangement now… not much buildup/energy/payoff... try some automation.  Vocal is very quiet...

Jason thompson/    Ooo, this one’s bright.   Lots of 8khz+.      Good that you tried for a bright mix, which is hard to pull off (don’t look at me for an example – my stuff is always dark)…  to me it depends on the singer.. this guy has a voice that is loaded with nasal buzz, so you have to be careful…

CJwall/.   Intense.     It’s hard to appreciate this, when I hear the song so differently… (as almost a prayer).    The drums are huge and mixed way to loud.   The vocal has been ridden hard.. very buzzy and clamped-down…. I can hear the compressor working hard, and it’s fighting the singer too much.  (i.e., when he belts it out, the level should still go up some!).   What's your monitoring situation?

Darkhorsereporter/.  Kinda wussy… not much energy in this… I dunno how, but this mix has turned the song into a dirge.    Vocal has a lot of buzz…  the mix balance is way off… bass is too high and many other instruments are buried in muddy reverb.

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