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R/E/P => R/E/P Archives => j. hall => Topic started by: j.hall on August 29, 2006, 11:37:46 am

Title: IMP6 discussion
Post by: j.hall on August 29, 2006, 11:37:46 am
have at it......
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: LSilva on August 29, 2006, 01:25:29 pm
I seem to favor the versions that didn't get too fancy.

Some of the standouts for me are Ator's, Adam Miller's and Rankus' (for the bass track treatment) versions.

I thought all the tracks sounded great and really didn't need much. I didn't even eq much of anything aside from high-passing the guitars and vocals.

The biggest problem I had was the vocals.  I got caught up in trying to figure out where everything was coming from and ended up missing some details (missed fades, uneven volumes).

I wish I had gotten an earlier start on this to give myself some more time.

Again though, this was a great time and an incredible learning experience.
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: ATOR on August 29, 2006, 02:27:46 pm
I wanted to make a no frills goodsounding mix.

These are some things I did apart from the obvious:
- duplicated the snaretrack with gate so the louder hits got accented more.
- used the tom tracks as pseudo roomtracks
- the drums were sent to a normal and a crushbus with heavy compression.
- bas is duplicated and re-amped through a POD
- different EQ on every guitartrack so they wouldn’t become a single wash of guitars.

The vocal was the hardest to get right and I’m still not satisfied with it. I probably spend half the time on the vocals.
I tuned the lead with Melodyne and automated the level so it would be just on top of the mix. Aligned some of the backing vox with the lead.

The only verb used was a short plate for the snare and lead vocal and I also used a delay on the lead.

I used as little compression as I could.


After listening to al the other mixes I wish I wouldn’t have scooped out the guitars that much, a little more 1k would give the mix more body and presence. Maybe I should have used more compression on the leadvocal to fatten it up a little.


I'll post my notes on the others mixes this week.
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: dikledoux on August 29, 2006, 02:54:54 pm
What caught me by surprise was the tracking - all layed out with parts and places clearly defined.  Kinda like blueprints for where they wanted the song to go - at least that's what I got.

But it's interesting how much the overall tonality of the song differs on some of these mixes.  A LOT of them stand side-by-side as very similar approaches... But some just stick out as having been wrenched into a completely different sonic direction - scoopy on one, super bass drum heavy on another, etc. and not necessarily good.  Also heard a couple mixes that had tons of drum processing, even though the drum parts were very consistently played.  My personal take was that the drummer hit the drums right, why screw with it too much?  Half the time I'm trying to make drums sound like these already did.

Another thing... Some of the files didn't line up by just a bit even though I brought them all into a project at 0:00:000.  This isn't the first time I've seen this - is lining up tracks a standard issue when getting raw track files, or is it just operator error on my part?  I heard on a couple of the mixes that people didn't notice the vocals not lining up - sounded like a slap echo, but I figured it was just a timing problem and slid (slud?) parts accordingly.  Anyone that didn't notice the oheads were phase flipped?  Was that part of the exercise or just an interesting coincidence?

The only limb I went out on was the editing.  Back to the head of the tune rather than drag out the stuff after the bridge.  If the vocal would've driven that part, or if there was a bitchin' guitar part there, I'da kept it.  But the whole part just sounded like a leftover on the song, so snip, snip, snip.

I really enjoyed doing this one, makes me want to get my act more together from a tracking standpoint.

dik
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: chrisj on August 29, 2006, 03:38:43 pm
Ator- Fat! The kick is really strong and upfront, the sound is really full- neat snare treatment on acoustic bits- pok!

Tom C- Liking the groove factor, lots of midrange, gentle on the woofers. Acoustic parts are way bigger than the distorted ones!

Adam Miller- Really big! I'm liking the snarl on the stereo guitars and the big drum sound. Just... BIG. Whoa. (in Keanu Reeves voice)

V Korehov- Double whoa. Are those reverb effects? On the third acoustic guitar, or on the semi-dirty electric? This is a TRIP, incredibly daring. They weren't heavy enuf for ya, huh? Very Happy

LouMan- Lots of air, lots and lots of air! The dynamics of this one have more room to move than usual. Actually everything has lots of room to move because the SPACE everything is in is way bigger than usual. I like the size of the verse vocals relative to the band.

Nizzle- Yikes! Very Happy Damn, you're loud! Like a band in the room. I'm enjoying that incredibly aggressive kick, and the bar-band-verb vocal. This is GREAT fun, I'm feeling the energy.

Dik- BIGTIME groove factor, and a huge beefy low end. I love how the loud bits hang together with all the elements roaring away in balance. Also, the way the track can go off like a cannon on guitars and kick and bass. Definitely awesome, I'm a fan Very Happy

J. Hall- Wow, compressed AND pointed. Intense intense intense. Got a super-aggressive groove factor. Damn, are your walls-o-sound good, too. I like the use of the bass for lows, it seems to sound extra good. Compression compression compression. Sweet. You da man Very Happy

Shakes the Clown- Cool- solid! We have groove again, and loads of bass, and things are combining in a way that really appeals to me. I like, I really like. I particularly like the drama of the vocal against the well-crafted backdrop of the music Smile

Rankus- Big- the snare verb jumps out immediately, and then the warble effect on the lead vocal- things are combining in a good way here too. Wild delay trickery at the end, like a headbanger canon Very Happy

Cerberus- distorted! Wink seriously, neat grind on the guitars, reamping it instead of say doing the same effect with EQ is very interesting. Sometimes it works REAL well on the chuggy guitars. Whatcha doing on the lead vocal in the acoustic section? Very tricky vocal mixing on the bee gees section at the end Smile

M Fassett- I'm liking the crunch on the guitars, they're really big and solid, and this makes the dynamic contrasts come off really well. Also, kewl verb on the snare, and good steady groove factor Smile

Blueboy- I like the guitar crunch here too, and it's neat how the bass goes 'bwommm!', the bass has a more voicelike tone here than on any other mix. It almost sounds like a fretless. It's interesting how the intro guitar is incredibly forward and then other things are in the middle or way back- this mix has lots of front-to-back placement Smile

Nick T- Whoa! BIG. Ye GODS. Makes me feel like a tiny little ant person Very Happy Damn good groove factor too, and holy mother of fuck, that frequency range, super lows and such highs. I'm not worthy, I'm not worthy! Very Happy and what did you mix this on?? (actually when I turn mine up about 7 db I don't feel quite so much like  a tiny little ant person. Still... *makes heavy metal gestures while headbanging*

Garret- Suddenly I'm in a warehouse! Whoa- no intro vocal. Verse vocal sounds good tho. I like the size of the kick combining with bass, that's on a very big scale. Coolbeans Smile

Calvin- No buss L2 limiter here! *turns it WAY UP*  hey, neat vocal reverb! Is that a flanger on the vocal reverb? It has a nice subtlety. I am also liking the bass tone as it combines with kick and snare Smile good low end kick here. Turn this one UP people, these are not necessarily mastered. (Mine isn't either)

Max- Again with the TURN IT UP, otherwise you're not hearing what's there. Hey, heavy guitar! I like the deep crunching on that guitar. We've got different guitars doing different things, like a trebly scratchy-chug guitar and that big chug guitar I was enjoying. Also the vocals are floating several miles about the band like they're flying in space Smile

Patrik T- Aha, we're on a big stage. I like the way I'm hearing the scale of things get bigger as other instruments enter- it really feels like the arrangement is getting bigger when new stuff comes in. Also some of the stuff is way deep in the reverb, making even more depth.

Very Happy
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: scott volthause on August 29, 2006, 03:47:03 pm
Okay, I'll come clean. That was my bands song, that we tracked a little less than 2 years ago.

Some of you noticed the odd vocal stuff. That was sort of an accident that happened while packing everything up. After the .rar was posted, I downloaded it and set it up like a faux mix, and realized what went wrong. I thought about sending up a red flag, but then decided it might be a good learning experience. Sometimes you might get stuff to mix that just doesn't make any sense at all.

Some of you made the best of it and others ignored it.

If anyone has any specific questions of me, fire away. And if anyone wants to hear the original mix, I can throw that up too.

I think everyone did cool things though.

Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: LSilva on August 29, 2006, 03:55:41 pm
dikledoux wrote on Tue, 29 August 2006 14:54



Another thing... Some of the files didn't line up by just a bit even though I brought them all into a project at 0:00:000.  This isn't the first time I've seen this - is lining up tracks a standard issue when getting raw track files, or is it just operator error on my part?  I heard on a couple of the mixes that people didn't notice the vocals not lining up - sounded like a slap echo, but I figured it was just a timing problem and slid (slud?) parts accordingly.



Yeah, I noticed that too.  My mix was one that had the "vocal slap back" problem. It was one of the many details that I meant to go back and fix but I ran out of time (my own fault).
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: garret on August 29, 2006, 04:28:53 pm
dikledoux wrote on Tue, 29 August 2006 14:54



Another thing... Some of the files didn't line up by just a bit even though I brought them all into a project at 0:00:000.



I think I only slid one vocal part later in time... it was so far off, it was either going to get muted or fixed.

The timing on the bass track was bothering me too, but I didn't have the time/energy/skills to fix it...

Regarding my track... No vocals on the intro indeed.  I'm not being paid for this mix, so I felt free to wield an honest and  heavy knife.  To my ears and taste, the "why don't you come quietly" vocal was/is god awful (in lyrics, melody, and style)... and guitar riffs in that section are so fantastic, I wanted them to be the feature hook, not that vocal.  So I cut the vox out of there entirely. Smile  Damn the torpedos, full speed ahead.  I meant eventually to ride up one of the guitars as a lead, but ran out of time...

Some other comments... after the wicked 9 layer vocals (the bridge I think), the rest of the tune just seemed like a let down.   And given that I killed off the vocal, there was even less reason for a minute more of rock music.  So I messed around with some mangling effects and turned the mix upside down into a riff/spacey outtro... the guitars remain, and the snare alone drives a resonance plug + delay.

Did the original bass bother anyone else?  something really flabby about it to my ears, I ended up goosing the mids significantly, and even putting a little bit of spring reverb on it (a la pixies).

I have to admit I originally did not like the tune... not my cuppa tea, and the vocal part I cut out was makign me cringe.  But now with my heavy handed editing, I like it. Smile

-G
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: j.hall on August 29, 2006, 05:49:02 pm
chrisj wrote on Tue, 29 August 2006 14:38


J. Hall- Wow, compressed AND pointed. Intense intense intense. Got a super-aggressive groove factor. Damn, are your walls-o-sound good, too. I like the use of the bass for lows, it seems to sound extra good. Compression compression compression. Sweet. You da man Very Happy



it's over compressed honestly.

i got a bit adventerous with the SSL, but with my work load and gear breaking i hardly had time to mix it at all.  that's not a disclaimer, i knew it was over compressed and i went with it anyway.......

my overall comment about the tracks is that it's very difficult to mix songs that have all the guitars and vocals broken out like that.

i've never seen it done to this extent, but this style of orginazation is becoming the norm and it's really annoying.

on tape machines you just punched in and things were all nice and neat and made sense by the time they got to me.

level matching and trying to understand exactly what goes where is a real pain in the balls when every part of the song is on a seperate track.  sc ott had to label the tracks the best he could for a large audience so i'll cut him slack there.

i used samples to beef up the drum sounds.  for a hard rock track the printed drums were just to sloppy sonically.  they were played well, but they just didn't match the precision in the guitars.
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: blueboy on August 29, 2006, 05:54:01 pm
scott volthause wrote on Tue, 29 August 2006 12:47

Okay, I'll come clean. That was my bands song, that we tracked a little less than 2 years ago.

If anyone has any specific questions of me, fire away. And if anyone wants to hear the original mix, I can throw that up too.

I think everyone did cool things though.




I'd love to hear the original mix Scott.

Also, details on how you tracked would be interesting.

Thanks for supplying the tracks to practice on!

JL
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: dikledoux on August 29, 2006, 05:55:39 pm
scott volthause wrote on Tue, 29 August 2006 15:47

...Sometimes you might get stuff to mix that just doesn't make any sense at all.

Don't get me started!   Laughing

Actually, I was thinking of playing your tracks for some people on another project to show them what stuff SHOULD sound like as opposed to what they have.  I thought the guitar sounds were perfect for the song - nice and gnarly, but a good smooth distortion.  I subbed all the elec guits together and then all I did was boost a touch around 380 on the subgroup so that when they were up front they were easier to listen to - and then I slapped some comp across the sub to tweak some attack back into the mellowed eq.  I didn't care that they all sounded like the same guitar.  It was cool that I could just stack and there'd be more, then more the MORE... <g>.  Seems like you'd stack different guitar sounds to assemble a sound that no one part gets, but any one of these guitar parts were pretty much fine just like they were.

garretg mentioned not liking the vocal so he muted it... I gotta admit that the first part didn't turn me on when I heard it dry, but the "why don't you come quietly..." bit made me think of cops on a bullhorn talking to a bad guy, so that's where I got the idea for the treatment and the vocal sounded fine with the extra crap going on.  I don't own a plugin to tune stuff with, so I tend to listen for attitude in a vocal performance as much as other qualities... sometimes that's all that needs to be there.

my .02

dik
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: scott volthause on August 29, 2006, 05:57:15 pm
Original Mix

Fornever

Tracking Details
This track was actually born from a demo. It's funny how it's one of our favorite live tracks, but we've since tried to record it with more of a eye on making it sound better, and it just didn't turn out good. All of the parts on here were born of spur of the moment, and to try to go back and say "oh yeah, add that part in with the vox that totally kicked ass" and it comes out boring. So this is actually going to make it on to our forthcoming EP, although probably with a few sonic tweeks, such as sample replacing the drums using the "better" drum sounds I captured when we actually starting recording the EP with decent stuff.

Anyhow. If memory serves me correctly, this would be the recording chains:

drums
KD - Beta 52 - Meek VC1Q w/opto compressor engaged
SD - 57 - Presonus blue tube
Tom 1&2 - 57 - Presonus blue tube
Overhead - Oktava MK319 - ART Dual tube

guitars
JCM800 - 1960A cab - 57 - Meek VC1Q

bass
Fender Bassman100 - 4x10 SWR - Beta52 - ?

vocals
Oktava Mk319 - Meek
and
Rode NT1 - Meek

DAW
PARIS

j.hall wrote on Tue, 29 August 2006 17:49

sc ott had to label the tracks the best he could for a large audience so i'll cut him slack there.



I don't think I actually put much effort into them, and intentionally wanted to make it a bit "challenging." Sorry if that was a bit of an assholish maneuver, I just thought part of the IMP series might be about overcoming obstacles in mixing, particularly with delivery methods.
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: chrisj on August 29, 2006, 06:03:18 pm
I slid stuff around too Smile

index.php/fa/3333/0/
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: dikledoux on August 29, 2006, 06:04:01 pm
j.hall wrote on Tue, 29 August 2006 17:49

i used samples to beef up the drum sounds.  for a hard rock track the printed drums were just to sloppy sonically.  they were played well, but they just didn't match the precision in the guitars.


WHOAH!  See, I didn't get that at all. I thought the drums were nice and tight.  But to be fair, on the mixes that are more heavily compressed, the groove tends to get chunky - and I hear what you're talking about on those mixes.  I think the drums blend (for lack of a better term) with the bass differently on my mix for instance, and so what some perceive as lack of precision didn't bug me - - at all.  Not even on my radar screen.

But I lean to the funky, trashier side of things naturally.  I'm just trashy like that.  I guess it's why I'm such an STP fan.

dik
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: NickT on August 29, 2006, 06:24:45 pm
Quote:

Nick T- Whoa! BIG. Ye GODS. Makes me feel like a tiny little ant person  Damn good groove factor too, and holy mother of f*#@, that frequency range, super lows and such highs. I'm not worthy, I'm not worthy!  and what did you mix this on?? (actually when I turn mine up about 7 db I don't feel quite so much like a tiny little ant person. Still... *makes heavy metal gestures while headbanging*



Thanks Chris. LOL I almost spit my Pepsi all over the screen when I read that!

I mixed it in the box with Sonar 5PE.

I wanted to spend more time on the vox...but just didn't see this IMP in time.

The treatment was pretty even across the mixes, only difference was how hard people hit it.

My reference for the mix was Altered Bridge, Nickelback and Disturbed.

I was going to hit the drum sub as a stem and decided not to. Although a little more kick would have been nice. I did clone the kick track and eq and comp the hell out of one and mix it back in with the original for some attack.

Thanks for the practice!

NickT
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: cerberus on August 29, 2006, 06:34:13 pm
i was also dismayed by the sonics of the drum tracks...

i ducked the snare out of the overheads using m/s compression with the snare itself keying. then i made the kick's attack pop with a heavy dose of trans-x. i multed all the drums and put gates on some of them, and parallel compressed two tom tracks. i used only two dedicated eqs on this entire mix, a high shelf went on the snare. like every eq process i do lately, it was bounced in parallel as dual  i.i.r. to give it similar characteristics to linear phase eq.

dik's comment on stacking guitars... i started the mix in mono... so i made sure it would indeed work as "one guitar" before i stereoized it.. [it really helps that my daw has "equal power" pan law.]

i stole the concept from the beatles:  mixed all mono first, then the stereo mixes were derived directly from the mono mixes. according to the history, the stereo mix sessions tended to go relatively quickly and with relative ease.  that is how i did the stereo here, and the strategy gave me the results i expected.

in terms of stereo, i do quite a bit of phase inversion and crosspanning,..usually i use a lot of delays, but as these tracks were not perfectly aligned, and there were so many, i did not need any dedicated delays.  i did slide a few tracks around.. then locked it up to keep the sample accuracy thoughout further processing.  


jeff dinces
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: Nizzle on August 29, 2006, 06:47:49 pm
My 2 cents on the tracks

Oheads were out of phase with one another
Snare was ok - though thin sounding
Kick was a bit tough to deal with.
As I recall, ther were no toms hit in the song. No Toms...no need for a track
Wish there were room mics
Generally speaking - the drums weren't all that kicking ass.

Bass was ok

Guitars were recorded very well - kudos on a great gtr sound.....I didn't touch any eq on them.
Vox were a little "loose"...I thought they sounded best "sunk in" the song.
Harmony vocals were out of time...I tried to convince myself it was intentional - but had to tighten them up rhythmically. Pitch wise -  a bit too loose for me - but they sounded pretty good sunk in the mix.

I have to agree 100% with whomever commented on the unecessary "breaking up" of the vox and gtrs....Although it looks tidy and thought out. It didn't make mixing easier(for me) -in fact - I spent 15 minutes putting the gtrs and vox "back together".

I really enjoyed hearing all of the variances in the mixes...

-t
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: cerberus on August 29, 2006, 06:54:24 pm
Nizzle wrote on Tue, 29 August 2006 18:47

Oheads were out of phase with one another

i think it was the snare that was out of phase with the overheads; it would be if it were miced from underneath.  i inverted the snare (also ducked it out of the overheads as i mentioned already). i think i got it working properly that way.
chrisj wrote on Tue, 29 August 2006 15:38

Whatcha doing on the lead vocal in the acoustic section?
ugliness, i know... it was an effect of multed tuned versions with the original vocal crosspanned and polarity inverted. made a smooth warbly distortion with some motion in the stereo,  bigger and closer sounding from the exagerrated details. so then the distortion really sticks out, spoiling the intimacy.  my original intent was to avoid that part seeming too sappy, but the vocal in the second acoustic break section needed to be less distorted, imo.

i substituted a revision for my original download link that has cleaned-up vocals in the second acoustic break (before j locked the thread). if you hit the link now you can download it.  

jeff dinces
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: Nizzle on August 29, 2006, 07:01:03 pm
I think I do recall flipping the phase on the snare, but I definitely flipped phase on one of the oheads as I felt like my equilibrium was out of whack while listening to them alone.

-t
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: garret on August 29, 2006, 07:40:56 pm
Nizzle wrote on Tue, 29 August 2006 19:01

I definitely flipped phase on one of the oheads as I felt like my equilibrium was out of whack while listening to them alone.

-t


Crap... now that I listen to the overheads, and flip phase back and forth, it's obvious how much more focused they are with one track inverted.

Dang, I should have caught that.  Alway learning stuff...

I checked the phase of the kick and snare against the oheads, but never though to check the overheads L and R against each other.

-G
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: maxim on August 29, 2006, 08:04:37 pm
if you zoom in on the waveform, you can see that the oh's are out of phase

i do that as a rule on drum tracks

if god didn't want us to look at sound, it wouldn't have given us daws

i too thought that the out of time vocals were intentionally sloppy, so i ended up burying them

i set up submixess for the gtrs, the bv's, the drums (with augmented kick), and ac/gtr

the bv's were tuned with melodyne

nothing on the mix buss

i ended up cutting a part of the bridge out afterwards

thanks for letting us butcher your song, scott

Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: UnderTow on August 29, 2006, 10:47:04 pm
Argh. I saw people still posting mixes today (well before midnight) so I decided to do a quick mix. Then did something really stupid (don't ask) and had to start again. Now I find the thread is locked. Sad

Oh well, I know I'm too late but if anyone is interested: http://www.yousendit.com/transfer.php?action=download&uf id=DCE3E7F254BA3E93

Alistair
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: blueboy on August 29, 2006, 11:09:15 pm
For anyone that may have tried to recently download my file, unfortunately my server just crashed for some reason... but I've got it up and running again.

I also feel like an idiot for not checking the phase on the overheads, so I have uploaded a new corrected version.

I left the version number the same because the download thread is locked and I can't change the URL, but I have added a comment to the file to differentiate it from the old one.

JL

Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: cerberus on August 30, 2006, 02:52:16 am
hi scott;

i noticed in your mp3 there is a sort of keyboard-pad-like sound playing under the acoustic section, what exactly is that?

jeff dinces
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: UnderTow on August 30, 2006, 07:04:30 am
scott volthause wrote on Tue, 29 August 2006 22:57

Original Mix

Fornever




Hi Scott,

There seems to be some weird squeaking in the MP3 on all the loud transients. It makes it very painfull to listen to. What did you encode the MP3 with?

Alistair
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: Tom C on August 30, 2006, 07:33:30 am
Part One: about me

'allo mesdames et messieurs,

First of all, I don't like this genre of music, that's why I've
participated: the learning experience is even better when you
have a little distance to the music.
I had a huge distance!

The downside is I probably smoothed things where you
headbanging guys would have distorted it even more.

The part of the song I like most is the acoustic part, that's
why I build the song around this and (as ChrisJ mentioned) made
it a bit bigger, maybe I've overdone it a bit.

My vocal approach for this part was to go 'in your face', a
bit like Nickelback, therefore I kept it dry.
Unlike most of you I didn't want to add to much reverb to
the vocal section just befor the acoustic part, I didn't
want an acoustical 'break' here. (BTW, I think this first
vocals suck anyway (and the first few guitar chords as well),
if I was the producer I'd made some more takes.
Maybe he wasn't warmed up at that time. I spend about 95% of
the mixing time with that vocal part. Go figure...).

I re-aligned the vocals for that harmony at 2:50 and removed
one track so the harmony wasn't overcrowded.

The guitars were just fine, I pushed them a bit around 200 Hz
and paned them out of the way of the singer.

The bass got a bit more level around 100 Hz and a pass
below 40 Hz to keep things clean.

I didn't notice the out of phase oheads, maybe because I've paned
them wide before the first listen. (Note to self: check this in the
future, dumb-ass).
The snare got a bit more punch in the lower regions, the kick
a pass below 30 Hz.

PS: Scott, thanks for providing this song. And even I don't like
that particular genre, I notice myself humming the chorus from
time to time, so you guys must have done something extremely right.

[Edit because of speeellllinnngg]
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: Tom C on August 30, 2006, 07:39:02 am
Part Two: about you

Here are my notes after listing to some the mixes.
I try to be honest and hope nobody 's offend by this (at
least I won't and hope to get some honest feedback as well;
I want to learn and improve, that's why I'm here) and I
only mention the things that got my special attention
(in a positive or negative way) and is not meant in comparison
to my mix (which has most probably even more issues).

It's nitpicking anyway because the mixes are all quite good.


Time references:

Single guitar (SG): 0:00 - 0:03 and later occurrences
Doubled guitar (DG): 0:07 - 0:10 and later occurrences
vocals 1 (V1): 0:15 - 0:30 and later occurrences
Vocals 2 (V2): 0:30 - 0:59
Vocals 3 (V3): 1:00 - 1:30
Vocals 4 (V4): 2:46 - 3:01
Vocals 5 (V5): 3:01 - 3:19

ATOR: like the guitar and drums, to much difference in reverb between V1 and V2

Rankus: love the more dry and IYF vocals, guitar too much ducked at V4, vocals a bit
miss-aligned there. Even I'm not a fan of that particular sound it's a nice idea and a
welcome change at 3:35. Very good bass level.

dikledoux: for my taste a bit too much reverb in V1.

cerberus: like your re-amped guitar sound at DG, but it's too different to SG, maybe you
should treat SG the same or in a similar way.
Vocals are good but could be a tad louder compared to the guitars (are you a guitar player?),
vocals a bit misaligned at V4 + V5.

ChrisJ: like the vocals (similar to mine) and the overall sound, I'd like the harmony (V5)
vocals better with the highest voice not leading.

LouMan: I like this a lot, everything 's there and still lots of space to breath.
vocals a bit misaligned at V4 + V5.

Adam Miller: big, fat&loud. Not much top complain here.

Vkorehov: cool and spacey acoustic section, like that reverb a lot. Not much top complain here.
BTW, there is a rest of different song before the mix.

J.Hall: unlike others I don't care about the compression, songs like this one can
handle that. I think the reverb/delay in V2 don't work for this song (to clean),
but it sounds very good and interesting. Have to find out how you did that.
Bass and drums are very good, I have to give it a listen again to find out what you did
there.

NickT: big'n'loud (how should someone master this?). Not much to complain here.
Same as for Chris, I'd like the harmony vocals (V5) better with the highest voice not leading.

Garret: avoided the intro vocals completely, that's a clever move that would've saved me a lot
of time. Nice idea with the drums at 3:35, but I think it's a bit overdone. Guitar/bass/drums
are good.

Nizzle: reverb in the acoustic section similar to J.Hall, sounds cool but my personal taste
is more IYF. Lots of energy, has a nice live feeling.

Okay, that's all for now. I'll give my ears a rest and will listen to the rest of
the songs later.

[Edit:] note to self: in future IMPs block at least half a
day to listen and to make notes.

Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: Calvin on August 30, 2006, 07:40:18 am
This was a fun exercise.  I have very little mix experience, and I was forced to use headphones 'cause one of my monitors is out, but I wanted to participate nonetheless.

It's apparent that my mix has less low end than most if not all of the other mixes.  I guess I can attribute that to mixing in the cans, but then again maybe it's me. Confused

I thought the guitars were well tracked, the drums were OK, but I really did not like the bass.  If there was one element of this tune that I would have liked to re-track, it would be the bass.  I'm interested to learn what everyone did to create a usefull bass track.  I ended up playing around with a freeware envelope control plugin ("Dominion") to try to control and beef up the bass.  Mixed results, I would say.

Like many of you, I thought the tune could use a little editing.  Also like many of you, I felt the letdown following the big vocal buildup in the bridge.  My solution (only a partial one) was to fly in another few bars of big vocals to fill the void.  If I had more time, I would have cut out that last verse and got to the big ending quicker.

chrisj asked about the vocal reverb.  It's another freeware plugin impulse response processor named "SIR".  The sample was a bright hall lifted from a Kurzweil KSP8.  I spent about 2 seconds selecting the reverb and adjusting the predelay a bit.  I was out of time.  So, if you liked the reverb, I lucked out.  I liked the vocals, but I don't think I did them justice.

Chris also mentioned that my track is on the quiet side.  Very true.  I made no attempt to "master" the mix.  I figured a bunch of AEs with a clue would know to crank up the volume if needed.

Anyway, great fun.  I look forward to the next one.  I'll try to post comments on the other mixes once I get my monitor situation squared away so I can give everything a proper listen. Smile

Cheers,    

Calvin
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: cerberus on August 30, 2006, 08:49:53 am
Tom C wrote on Wed, 30 August 2006 07:39

cerberus: like your re-amped guitar sound at DG, but it's too different to SG, maybe you
should treat SG the same or in a similar way.

i feel the song changes mood often: disgust, pity, raging anger, blazing glory... so  i exaggerated the tonal contrast between guitar parts intentionally,...there are so many great tones still buried in there, i wanted it to sound "symphonic".


Quote:

Vocals are good but could be a tad louder compared to the guitars (are you a guitar player?),
air guitar only Embarassed   the vocals would need to be "refined" to be louder... and more carefully panned, i think. i like some of the harmonies guys like rick and patrick emphasized...the minor ones especially. i did notice now i can lower the guitars by .1 db for a better balance, good idea!
Quote:

vocals a bit misaligned at V4 + V5.
the human factor, chaos, there are plenty of parts that are tight, but again, some contrast, relief which matches the other types of contrast i tried to create... similarly i wanted the snare to snap rather than thump, so that the snare, kick and cymbals all had tonal contrast with each other too.

Quote:

thought the guitars were well tracked, the drums were OK, but I really did not like the bass.  If there was one element of this tune that I would have liked to re-track, it would be the bass.  I'm interested to learn what everyone did to create a usefull bass track.  I ended up playing around with a freeware envelope control plugin ("Dominion") to try to control and beef up the bass.  Mixed results, I would say.


where i did not succeed as much with the contrast/orchestral spectrum idea is the bass.  the ratio between slappy attack, buzziness and warm full tone is very hard to work out without leaving a hollow dip between the bass and everything else..,or spreading the bass too far up into nether regions north of 150 hz,  the "murk and headphase" regions for bass, imo.  this bass seems dynamic in a narrow range, so if i try to compress this bass to make it more present, it just "sits there" and gets boring after a minute or two... i noticed that on many of the mixes: the bass is present, but it doesn't dance.

i think i'll try a dominion type device (trans-x in my case) and also convert the bass to midi and perhaps try to augment it with samples or synth. the experimenting will take time, but i think the bass player would still recognize their own (excellent)performance.  was this bass recorded through a compressor?  or the particular bass isn't the right one for the genre, or the player doesn't whack it hard enough?  or  perhaps it should have been amped and d.i. together at once?

jeff dinces
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: Vladislavs Korehovs on August 30, 2006, 08:56:12 am
Hello Guys.
It was not the Reverb...
MOre precisely it was a string part with some ambient reverb. But reverb was not so important, PAD itself was ambient.
There was 2 PADS one with Strings and other with some FX.

Overally i like Adam Miller mix the most.
One of few people who could not get phasing issues on Snare and not make it sound Dull by pushing compression treshold to much.

I'm sorry but i don't like most of vocals.
I expect this song to require in front of your face vocals and not covered with Tons ov reverb. I don't think so much reverb on vocal will suit to any musical style because vocal usually is the
most nealy placed element. In this style guitars are also as important as Vocal is. But this doesn't mean what Vocal shoudl be covered with Reverb. The best use of reverb is not to use it a lot:))

I have also was very surprised how Vocal was treated.
I have been using VAmp to get verse vocals sound band limited.
He was using some Band Limiting, overally quite same approach by two diferent people, and this is very interesting.

My top end sounded a little bit Dull because i have a little bit overused AC1 on Master Buss (and it is the only one processing i have on master buss). i have already remixed it.
Yes we usually have to Balance Harsh mix vs Mix with Dull top.
and it is usually quite easy to overdo, and more relevant to mastering.  But i think Analog Channel shoudl be done on mixing stage, because it affect our treatmeent while we mixing...
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: Patrik T on August 30, 2006, 09:02:47 am
Seems I made it before the thread was locked, so...

I did spend some hour and a half on this in the middle of the night. I am about to move so I wanted to do one last thing before starting to unplug cables and finding the cardboard boxes again. Luckily I found the rar set and gave it a gooo.

The mix. Well. I dunno really. I made it in Sonar 5PE with some included plugs (Sonitus) and then used some Voxengo thingies. If I had more time I would probably run a few things out of the box.

So...

I had two different guitar busses, and this combined with the "raw" guitars (the short one centered in the very start) created a subtle increase of drive to me. Tiny - somewhat honky - chuggy. Like that and I liked that. To separate the guitars from each other and make them a little more glued into each other I found myself to dip a few in the 600-800 range. Some of them got boosts around 250-300.

Bass was comped on it's own but also sent to a parallell with destruction comping.

Lead vox were undertaking Voxengos Voxformer and were going through a cheapo sounding reverb of some kind.

The out of phase OH's...did not really spot that one but when I look back at the mix I see that the OH's were sent to a separate bus (which then went to the drum bus) and the OH's do have a delay on one of the channels. At some point one crash came up L and the other R so it made sense. Maybe the inv phase got a little fix this way. I comped the OH's separatley and it kind of brung up the cymbals into more activity.

The snare was sent to the drum bus but also sent clean to the main bus. The drum bus had some gentle eq and rev on it. This bus was paralell comped but when I revisited the mix I saw that the paralell comp was followed by 156 ms of delay. What the fuck? But when I disegage the delay and engage it again it makes some kind of strange sense regarding how the drums sound, so I guess it's there for a reason (I generally mix with more instinct than brain).

When I soloed the many voices attached to the chorus i LMBO because they were so much drunken sailors. HOOOAHHIOOO. I just couldn't figure what they should do or which one that was leading so I just bunched them into a far rev bus and made them sit away and subtle.

I made the tune decrease after the biggest spot. If I would work more on this I'd use the fatter guitar bus in the very end. I would also automate a whole bunch of crap throughout the piece as well. Especially in the 2:nd half of the tune.

It was just a rapid mix. I strapped a comp over the 2 buss in the end, just taking one dB at some spots.

I'll be back with some positive feedback on the other mixes.


Best Regards
Patrik





Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: cerberus on August 30, 2006, 09:22:43 am
Patrik T wrote on Wed, 30 August 2006 09:02

I made the tune decrease after the biggest spot. If I would work more on this I'd use the fatter guitar bus in the very end. I would also automate a whole bunch of crap throughout the piece as well. Especially in the 2:nd half of the tune.

It was just a rapid mix. I strapped a comp over the 2 buss in the end, just taking one dB at some spots.
i'd like to hear a finished version.. the parts that are good are very good for me...  i'm curious to hear what it would evolve into.  same goes for anyone who ran out of time...probably a lot of us since the sheer number of disjointed parts was extreme as j. mentioned already.

jeff dinces
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: rankus on August 30, 2006, 02:30:34 pm


On My mix:

I gated the kik drum, eq'd with the "devil horns" curve... (Boost at 73hz, kill 500hz, Boost at aprox 5-7k) Snare: hit it with Tube Sim pluggin for some "hair" and some gated verb, otherwise I left alone... Muted tom tracks... Ran paralel comp on the kik and snare... nothing at all done on OHDS. (missed the phase thing!)

Bass:  UAD 1176 with fairly heavy comp into Amplitube with 880 Crunch preset (tweaked eq in Amplitube) then into Waves Ren Bass for some more harmonics.

Guitars: were not that great so pretty much worked with that, trying not to over process.  Rolled off some bottom boosted 2k. Panned hard the tracks that had similar timbre.

Vox:  Pretty much left alone. no eq.  A little delay.  Lots of delay in big chorus on the BG's. Line up some stuff... but not all. (Needed some "sloppiness") UAD La2a for moderate comp.

On breakdown guitars:  Used "telephone eq" and a rotary speaker sim.





On the song itself:  I found it too long... getting pretty boring by about 3:20 or so.... Could probably  go somewhere else with the arrangement to break things up (drop a chorus add a middle eight?).  Could have used some room mics on the drums... Kick drum was pretty flabby. Guitar sounds were not too great... vocals were pretty good.  Bass was flabby as hell, and appeared to have been low passed to avoid string and pick up noise?. (eek)  Liked the song though.. needs a bit of arranging, thats all.


Comments on mixes:

Note I could have said something nice about each mix, but what good would that do... so I chose to call it the way I hear it...



ATOR:

Good Mix!  (Mastered ?)  (MASTERED!!!)  Dood this is a "mix" project.... decent mix though.



J Hall:  

Comps pumping .... Slightly murky,.... cool "wall of sound" aspect to it though! Good stuff. Watch out for the comps though...



LOU MAN:

Mushy...Possibly too much ambience.... but nice ballance


NIzzle:

Sweet mix, but too much ambience (FX) on Vox detaches the voice from the "band ambient space". Need to make it  sound like they are in the room together.


dikledoux:

A bit murky but decent over all levels etc.  Drums could be tightened up sonicly. Liked the vocal FX (bullhorn?) on the bridge. (or was that pre chorus?)



ADAM MILLER:

Sweet!  Great mix... nice and tight bottom,... well ballanced.... Samples on the drums?  Nice job on the gtrs... !!!!


Tom C:

Need to work on tightening up the drums. Good Mix.



VKorehov:

Diffrent treatment with distortion on the vox.  Comps pumping during heavy parts. Decent Mix. Watch the comps.


Chris J:

Too much high end on snare (ovr hds?)...  Need a little more attention to bottom end.



Shakes The Clown:

Slight fuzzy feel in the mids.  Don't be afraid to bring up the high end a little, and boost the bottom,.... That should help this a bit.


Rankus: (note to self)

Could tighten the drums (kik) up a little more... bottom end a tad mushy.... Sweet treatment on the breakdown dude!  Probably should have used samples on the drums to lose that room sound... Gtrs could have been more up front.


Cerberus:

A tad midsy, but overall  good job.  Too much EQ on the guitars perhaps  (Midsy / sqawky in the heavy parts). I'm Glad Someone else  took advantage the breakdown...


Mark Fasset:

Good mix.  A little murky in the lower mids. (seems to be a trend)


BlueBoy:

Cool intro reverse cymbal.  You beat yourself up in your post , but dude this is good stuff. The gtrs are a teensy bit harsh, but they started out that way so no biggie.  Overall ballance is great! Good job.

Nick T

A little "over processed" sounding.. PSP Vintage Warmer? A little over the top with the comps... cymbals harsh. Good job for getting in at the last minute though.


Maxim:

A little dark, but nice with gravity in the bottom end.  Missing some lead vox though?  You Fixed up those nasty guitars a bit too.  cool.


Patrik T:

Nice ballance. But A little harsh in the upper range.


LOTS OF FUN GUYS!  Looking fwd to the next IMP!
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: scott volthause on August 30, 2006, 03:34:35 pm
cerberus wrote on Wed, 30 August 2006 02:52

hi scott;

i noticed in your mp3 there is a sort of keyboard-pad-like sound playing under the acoustic section, what exactly is that?

jeff dinces



I can't say that I can tell you. There's definitely no keyboard on there though.

There are several delays and a nice fat plate 'verb on stuff during that section. During the second verse / acoustic section, one of the acoustic guitars is treated with a tremelo. That's pretty much it.
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: scott volthause on August 30, 2006, 03:37:43 pm
UnderTow wrote on Wed, 30 August 2006 07:04


Hi Scott,

There seems to be some weird squeaking in the MP3 on all the loud transients. It makes it very painfull to listen to. What did you encode the MP3 with?

Alistair


Exported out of Samplitude to MP3.

I'm not hearing the squeaking at all using iTunes. Anyone else getting that?

What are you playing it back through?
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: cerberus on August 30, 2006, 04:17:26 pm
scott volthause wrote on Wed, 30 August 2006 15:34

cerberus wrote on Wed, 30 August 2006 02:52

i noticed in your mp3 there is a sort of keyboard-pad-like sound playing under the acoustic section, what exactly is that?
I can't say that I can tell you. There's definitely no keyboard on there though.

There are several delays and a nice fat plate 'verb on stuff during that section. During the second verse / acoustic section, one of the acoustic guitars is treated with a tremelo. That's pretty much it.
imo, you have delayed it enough to sound like a separate part. i hear new harmonies which seem to fight with the chords musically more than compliment them, but i like the smoother feeling of it.

scott volthause wrote on Wed, 30 August 2006 15:37

UnderTow wrote on Wed, 30 August 2006 07:04

There seems to be some weird squeaking in the MP3 on all the loud transients. It makes it very painfull to listen to.
I'm not hearing the squeaking at all using iTunes. Anyone else getting that?

nope, i don't hear any unexpected artifacts in your mp3.

===

scott, i think it's fair for us to be extra critical of your mix because you had exponetially more time and a clearer view from which to consider every aspect. my opinion is that it is very weak on harmony and counterpoint.  compare to other mixes that used more vocal and guitar parts (e.g. blueboy's revision). and compare to mixes where the effects change more for the chorus, verse, and break.  there is tons of harmony and counterpoint in these recordings, but your mix/arrangement only seems strong on melody.  

reverb is boring for me on "fornever" and it inhibits my ability to feel the music,  some used it well, i think but still it added nothing to my experience of the music because i think the "room" that "fornever" is supposed to be presented in is not relevant to the music; the song is about a personal conversation;  it's not an anthem! so i think the delivery needs to be direct. it doesn't feel like a live performance either, so i think that trying to build an "audience member" listening perspective is not a correct approach.

jeff dinces
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: scott volthause on August 30, 2006, 04:28:37 pm
cerberus wrote on Wed, 30 August 2006 16:17


scott volthause wrote on Wed, 30 August 2006 15:37

UnderTow wrote on Wed, 30 August 2006 07:04

There seems to be some weird squeaking in the MP3 on all the loud transients. It makes it very painfull to listen to.
I'm not hearing the squeaking at all using iTunes. Anyone else getting that?

nope, i don't hear any unexpected artifacts in your mp3.

jeff dinces


it's probably just my mixing that's making it painful to listen to.  Laughing
Title: Re: IMP666 discussion
Post by: cerberus on August 30, 2006, 04:47:37 pm
scott volthause wrote on Wed, 30 August 2006 16:28

it's probably just my mixing that's making it painful to listen to.  Laughing
not at all. i find it a relatively polite mix.  on the other hand, perhaps j 's kick drum should be registered as a lethal weapon? Twisted Evil   and if i played alistair's mix as loud as i want to, i fear the police would come knocking at my door.  

jeff dinces  
Title: Re: IMP666 discussion
Post by: j.hall on August 30, 2006, 05:20:38 pm
rankus......lots of comments on murky low mids......you got a low mid bump in your acoustics?

Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: UnderTow on August 30, 2006, 05:21:12 pm
Hi all,

I was too late with my mix but I'll comment on the different versions in case anyone finds any of my comments usefull.

First up, some files don't have proper naming. I think that proper labeling is part of the job. As I downloaded everything in one go and saved to a folder, I can't tell who some of these mixes are from. To a lesser degree the same goes for ID3 tags. They should also be correctly filled in. I have all the tracks loaded in an MP3 player and can't always tell from the track name  who's version it is.

If I don't comment on an aspect of a mix, it probably means that it is fine. Smile I think critical comments are more usefull for learning. All comments based on quick listening so I might miss a few things.


In the order they happen to be in my player:

dikledoux: Sounds good but I don't think the vocal echo really fits this style. (A taste thing of course). Maybe a touch muddy. Towards the end the vocal could be a bit more upfront.

Chris J: Sounds a bit boxy and harsh. The vocal is clear. I like that. The drums sound as though they have a bit too much room on them. I would like a bit more body.

M Fassett: Again I find the drums have a bit too much room on them. Especially the kick. It sounds boomy. The snare could be a bit brighter. You used all (or alot) of all those vocal tracks but you seem to have tightend things up. Great. Smile Overall the mix could be a bit brighter.

Blueboy: I quite like the overal balance. I would have made the kick a touch heavier. The central guitar comes in a bit loud at arround 1:40. Vocal clear. Accoustic guitars loud! Smile A bit too much of a good thing. Smile Definition on the Bass. It is audible through the mix.

Tom C: Guitars a bit dull. Vocal a touch upfront for my personal taste. Kick could have more body and gets caught by the compressor(?) the wrong way at times. Vocals could be a bit brighter/more defined. Again loud accoustic guitars.

Garrett: No first vocal. Smile Nice overall mix. Snare seems to be a bit in its own space seperated from the rest of the drum kit. You also seem to have used alot of those vocal tracks. I think you tightend them if my memory of the timing is correct. Good. Smile I like the idea of what you do with the drums after 3:40 or so but the sound of the effect could be fine tuned a bit I think.

max: Something went wrong here. The levels are all over the place but not in a good way. At times it sounds like parts of the mix are being partially gated (chattering). There is way too much reverb on the vocals. And some cheeky person keeps rolling the drum riser/drummer off stage. He keeps disapearing and the guitarists keep running away to look for him!

Calvin: Nice overal mix. Nice spacey vibe in the part before the chorus. I think the other parts could be a touch dryer and more in your face. Clear vocal. Kick a bit floppy. In that last bit with all the vocals, the leading one could be brought forward a bit.

ATOR: A bit sharp but nice full spectrum mix. (I like that). Did you replace the kick? It is a bit prominant. You made the mix quite loud (like me). I'm not sure this was the intention. Smile Vocal nice and clear. Nice width. I like it.

Cerberus: I like the drums but some of the snare hits (the rolls) seem to have disapeard or gotten much softer compared to the other hits. I don't really like what you did with the center guitar. Mainly because it lacks a bit too much low-end. Again loud accoustic guitars and the bit that comes after that lacks low end so there is not enough impact when that section comes in. Basicly all the sections except the one with the accoustic guitars are lacking low-end IMO. Vocals could be a bit brighter.

Shakes the Clown: Nice mix. Vocals maybe a bit loud for my taste. Snare does get a bit burried at times and could be louder to add more impact. Bass could be slightly tamed in low-mid/upper bass region.

J.Hall: Another big mix but the compressor is chewing up the kick drum making it sound floppy. Vocal could use less verb for my taste. The mix would probably sound great without so much compression.

mix: Ah someone added stuff! Thumbs up! I think the padish sounds work well the way you used them and contribute to the track. Weird (bassy) artefact at 1:44. A bit too much low-end. It gets a bit muddy in spots. Nice vocal when clean but they loose a bit too much high-end/definition in the distorted parts. The guitars are a bit midish and don't sound totaly balanced sonicly to me. The bass has alot of bass but could use more resolution. (Lowering the level but adding a bit of mid-range maybe).

Patrick T : (Comes up in the player as yes girl - yes girl) I think the mix would sound much nicer with much less reverb. The vocals are way too distant alot of the time but even when they are not, they are not in the same space as the guitars. Thats is my main complaint. Bass a bit floppy at times.

Rankus: Wide drums. Again accoustic guitars are a bit louder than the electric ones. The panned vocals lack a center focus. I think I would like this mix alot with a few minor tweaks. Smile

Adam Miller: Nice big wide mix. Vocal could have a touch more bottom. There is a touch too much brightness in the drums for my taste. Basicly the mix is a bit bright for my taste. (upper mid/lower highs)

Nick T: Way too bright for my taste. A pitty because the rest sounds quite good.

UnderTow: I shouldn't have slapped that limiter over the stereo bus. Maybe a bit muddy low-low-mids. Vocal could have a bit more weight.

=====

Oh what the heck, I'll share what I did for anyone interested:
Reference for my version:     http://www.yousendit.com/transfer.php?action=download&uf id=DCE3E7F254BA3E93

Worked in Sonar 5PE. Because I had little time and because I felt it suited the material, I decided to leave it quite raw with not too much reverb except for the harmony vocals. I put them way back in the mix with a big delay to mask all the timing problems. (Also no time for editing).

While going through the tracks I noticed the overheads issue so I turned the phase of one of the channels by 59 degrees. Thats is when it seemed to snap together. Kick and snare expanded and EQed. Overheads compressed with Voxengo Crunchessor and joined with other drum tracks in a bus with another Crunchessor then some harmoniEQ to add some sparkle/harmonics then used dominion (transient designer tool) to bring some snap back. WizooVerb Reverb set to punchy drum ambience and tweaked to taste.

Bass EQed and compressed with Endorphin.

Guitars: Eqed some mid out to leave space and compressed with Crunchsessor. Accoustic guitars EQed but no compression. All guitars have some Mid channel gain reduction with Voxengo MSED to leave space for vocal. WizooVerb Reverb set to Crystal Hall and tweaked to taste.

Vocals: All treated with Voxengo VoxFormer. Delays by Sonitus and PSP Nitro. PerfectSpace reverb with "Bright Blues Club" impulse response.

Stereo bus processing: PSP MasterComp in parallel mode with max 2dB GR on the loudest parts (stereo half linked). Voxengo Warmifier set to 6550 emulation for some fake analogue warmth. The bit I probably shouldn't have done: 2-3 dB of hard clipping, and 3-4dB of hard limiting both curtousy of Voxengo Elephant running in quad oversampling mode.

=====

This was fun! Smile Besides my own (electronic) music, I havn't done any music mix in a couple of years. It was a pleasure to work with this material even thought there were some problems as many have allready mentioned. I'm looking forward to taking part in the next IMP if you guys will have me participate. Smile

Cheers,

Alistair
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: UnderTow on August 30, 2006, 05:25:23 pm
scott volthause wrote on Wed, 30 August 2006 20:37



Exported out of Samplitude to MP3.

I'm not hearing the squeaking at all using iTunes. Anyone else getting that?

What are you playing it back through?


Strange. I'm playing it back with Winamp. I have never heard anything that sounds quit like this. It sounds a little bit like jiggling coins on every transient/peak. I'll download the file again just in case.

EDIT: Still there after downloading again. Although I have 100% confidence in Winamp, I tested in other players and I get the same thing. It could be the mix. Smile

Alistair

Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: ATOR on August 30, 2006, 05:33:32 pm
Did some listening and wrote down some comments. When I listen to my own mixes I focus on what's wrong so you guys get the same treatment  Twisted Evil

Adam Miller
great rockmix, very solid

mix 8-26
the vocal ambience shifts form toilet to big hall, this makes me loose the connection with him. the reverb on the ac guitars makes them distant.
drums and guitars sound good

Korehov
I like the snare, Bass is muddy
Vocal gets lost in guitars at some parts
Nice idea about the synthlike fx on the acoustic guitars, too bad the chord changes are delayed, this makes it hazy. Would be nice if you could record the fx and align it with the guitars.

Dikledoux
Good mix, nice balance between instruments

J Hall
drums are very stereo (15ms dly?)
vox have too much reverb for my taste
has some compression artefacts

Tom C
drums are a bit small and thin, vocals too loud in some parts
there's a low end (guitar chug?) resonance popping up now and then

Louman
Lots of reverb makes everything distant
Balance between instruments is off
Mix is top heavy

Chris J
Drum sounds as if it's recorded in a small box
I don’t like the small radio eq on the guitars
When I listen to your bridge I’m glad I took the time to tune the vocals

ShakesTheClown
sounds nice, vocal is a bit too loud (which would be good if the guy could sing)

Rankus
Chorus vocals sound distant
guitars are too shy in the end this creates an anticlimax
clip at 2:38
drunk guys singing in the bridge, I like the underwater part after the bridge

Cerberus
The drums are too soft and the song looses impact because of that. I can hardly hear the bass

Garret G
I guess you didn’t like the chorus vocals much
Good balance, thick sound
I Like the muting/filtering of the drums after the bridge but it would be nice if they kicked in after 8 bars for the Big Ending

M Fassett
Low end lacks tightness, chorus vocals sound distant

Blueboy
Nice balance, vocal stays good on top, bit top heavy, lowend lacks tightness

Nick T
Good balance, too bad you limited your mix so hard. Vocal a bit too loud.
Some midlow resonance in the vocal (reverb)

Max
Good idea to cut the part after the bridge, it is a bit of a dead in the water part.
I don’t like the delays on the drums and the reverb on the acoustics.
Sounds like some parts have shifted in time, that and the delays throw all groove out of the window
Vocals too loud, drums too soft


It's great to hear so many views on a mix. Too bad some of you guys had to rush it, I'd like to hear what you could do if you took your time. When I have some time I'm gonna try out some of the ideas and sounds I heard. Thanks for participating everybody.
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: j.hall on August 30, 2006, 05:34:09 pm
UnderTow wrote on Wed, 30 August 2006 16:21



J.Hall: Another big mix but the compressor is chewing up the kick drum. It sounds floppy. Vocal could use less verb for my taste. The mix would probably sound great without so much compression.



what is "floppy"?  the kick drum, or the whole mix?

how come people keep submitting mixes?  next mix submission i see will get deleted.....maybe in school you can turn homework in late and get away with it, in the real world you just get fired and not paid!
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: NelsonL on August 30, 2006, 05:47:20 pm
j.hall wrote on Wed, 30 August 2006 14:34

UnderTow wrote on Wed, 30 August 2006 16:21



J.Hall: Another big mix but the compressor is chewing up the kick drum. It sounds floppy. Vocal could use less verb for my taste. The mix would probably sound great without so much compression.



what is "floppy"?  the kick drum, or the whole mix?

how come people keep submitting mixes?  next mix submission i see will get deleted.....maybe in school you can turn homework in late and get away with it, in the real world you just get fired and not paid!


I'm looking for one of those "fired but still get paid" type gigs. Let me know if you've got any ideas.

Also, I think the kick sounds more SCSI than floppy, but that's just me.

I wish I'd been around to participate though, I've always been impressed with the stuff Scott has posted-- even before he had a first name.

See you in detention...
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: scott volthause on August 30, 2006, 06:04:12 pm
cerberus wrote on Wed, 30 August 2006 16:17


===

scott, i think it's fair for us to be extra critical of your mix because you had exponetially more time and a clearer view from which to consider every aspect. my opinion is that it is very weak on harmony and counterpoint.  compare to other mixes that used more vocal and guitar parts (e.g. blueboy's revision). and compare to mixes where the effects change more for the chorus, verse, and break.  there is tons of harmony and counterpoint in these recordings, but your mix/arrangement only seems strong on melody.  



Oh absoutely. Critique away, as I can definitely take quite a bit of abuse. I've had way more time fiddling with this than probably everyone here put together. That mix was done over a year ago though, and I can tell where I've changed and what I've learned the past year.

I appreciate your honesty though. We're all (supposedly) grown ups, and seeing that this is an open forum, and open discussion on audio and the mixing thereof, everything should be on the table.
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: UnderTow on August 30, 2006, 06:05:19 pm
j.hall wrote on Wed, 30 August 2006 22:34



what is "floppy"?  the kick drum, or the whole mix?



Sorry for not being clear: The kick.

Quote:


how come people keep submitting mixes?  next mix submission i see will get deleted.....maybe in school you can turn homework in late and get away with it, in the real world you just get fired and not paid!


Sorry for that.  Embarassed  I didn't know when the dead-line was. I actually thought I had read it was last week. Then I saw some people still posting mixes so I thought I would have a go afterall but then encountered the locked thread when I was finished.  Confused

My apologies.

Alistair
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: scott volthause on August 30, 2006, 06:14:47 pm
Oh, and in case anyone was curious, I found out the reason why one of the vocals tracks was seriously early / out of time.

That track is being processed with a pitch shifter +1 octave, and my DAW doesn't do automatic plug-in compensation, so that track had to be slid forward a good 100+ millis in order for it to sound in time.

And I also remember the ohead tracks being out of phase. One of my Oktava mics is wired opposite of the other. How is that for Russian quality?

Also, given the rather crappy state of that recording space (read that as very thin walls, no sound treatment) it's hard to make a determination for sure which party is offending during tracking, so phase flipping was left for mix time.
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: blueboy on August 30, 2006, 06:15:20 pm
rankus wrote on Wed, 30 August 2006 11:30

BlueBoy:

Cool intro reverse cymbal.  You beat yourself up in your post , but dude this is good stuff. The gtrs are a teensy bit harsh, but they started out that way so no biggie.  Overall ballance is great! Good job.



Thanks very much Rick. I appreciate the words of encouragement.
(Charles Dye taught me everything I know... Smile ) <inside joke>

I'm not really qualified to comment on other people's mixes, but I tend to agree with much of Rankus' assessment. (How's that for dodging a bullet!)

I wanted to do this to learn more about other people's approaches to mixing, so I thought I would explain in detail my thought process of how I approached the mix, and coming from a novice perspective I'm interested in whether or not my approach makes any sense to others.

When I first got the tracks I was surprised how disjointed they were, but instead of cleaning things up I was lazy and just routed things to individual groups (ensuring no overlapping lead vox for example). Mono lead vox, stereo bkg vox, stereo gtr, mono bass, stereo drums, lead gtr. My intention once I first ran through the track was to try and build on what was there, instead of making drastic overall tonal changes, as I think it would need to be re-tracked to do any major alterations without killing it.

For the intro I wanted to give the first hit more impact so I thought using a reverse crash would give it a sense of relative volume as it accelerated to the first hit. I used 2 stereo crash samples (one inverted and slightly delayed) to give it some "motion".

On the intro guitar I thought it would be interesting to use automation to emulate the hypercompression that you normally hear on these types of songs. I wanted the guitar to sound huge, so instead of going from a relatively small single guitar to big stereo guitars, I tried to make the energy of the single guitar match the energy of when the band comes in. I thought the contrast of this combined with going from up-front center mono to big wide stereo was cool. I was hoping that by having a big guitar sound in the beginning, I could bring the level down during the rest of the song, and that people would still hear (remember) the guitar as being "big" even though it was much quieter.

For the drums I tried to beef up the kick with a bit of compression and EQ as it was pretty flat. I copied the snare track and did some parallel compression and EQ and a subtle super short stereo delay.

I did hear a problem with the overheads (out of phase) but it wasn't that obvious "one of my ears is plugged" sound. It was more like funky stereo miking in a weird room. I only work with drum sample libraries so it never occurred to me to even check for that type of thing. Anyway I mixed with the sound the way it was, which kind of left the snare a bit weak and distant sounding. After fixing the problem the snare was more full and a bit more prominent in the mix so I think I may want to go back and adjust how it sits in the mix again.


I added choked cymbal crashes and muted the hi-hat count-in to give the intro a little more tension and release. I also automated mutes on a room sound IR and a plate IR on the snare throughout the different sections to give it some contrast.

On the bass I duplicated the track and put a bunch of crap on it and blended it with the original. It sounds almost laughable when in solo, but I really liked the way it sounded in the track so I left it that way.

I left the mono intro guitar untouched, and then cut a bit of 300Hz out of the stereo guitars. Acoustic guitars got a bit of high end boost. I left the acoustics with only slight bus compression as I wanted them to jump out of the mix as a contrast to the naturally compressed distorted guitars. Maybe they are too loud, but I like how the mood changes in that part so I left them that way.

The vocals were very difficult for me. I didn't like the sound of the original tracks so I did some major EQ and added 2 comps with subtle amounts of reduction. I used a short vocal plate IR with a long initial delay and a subtle slap back delay to add ambience. I also did a parallel stereo vox track doing a slightly detuned left and right lead vox double with a slight amount of chorus to give it a more natural feel by slowly modulating it. I tried to make the vox cut through the noise of the mix without sounding too "overprocessed" but I don't know how well I succeeded in that. Vox were also edited to line things up, fix some bkg vox lines, and to add a fake harmony at the end.

The biggest challenge overall for me was trying to stuff all that noise into 2 tracks and maintain clarity without diminshing the power throughout the different sections. When all the bkg vocals come in I found it difficult to not have them take over the mix. I ended up routing the lead vox group and the bkg vox groups through another master vox group in order to automate the relative vox to music relationship.

I ended up with level automation on individual vox tracks, group vox tracks, and master vox tracks in order to tame some loud vox sections and avoid using more compression. A lot of the automation was on individual words or syllables which was a real pain. I tried to fine tune the overall vocal level by listening at a really low level on some small computer speakers and matching up the different sections.

There was a lot of automation used throughout the song to try and give it some sense of progression. Being a guitarist I had to fight the urge to crank up the guitars all the time as I wanted to keep it exciting but not fatiguing. I still feel that they are bit harsh and I should have EQ'd the high end a bit. I hope all the level changes weren't too distracting.

I was surprised at the variation in overall balance of all the submitted mixes, and I'm not sure if it is due to sound preference or to monitoring differences. I tried to check my mix on about 5 different pairs of speakers at various listening levels. I'm using a pair of Tannoy Reveal Actives which I find are a bit cloudy in the mids and highs (got a great deal on them and I'm still learning their sound), but I am most familiar with some floor standing B&W's with a sub for a full range reference. I've tried to tune the room and ensure a balanced sound, but I don't know if what I am hearing is accurate yet.

Anyway, this was a great learning experience and a lot of fun... and I never want to hear this song ever again.  Smile <jk>

Actually I think I'm going to try and re-mix and then master it now...

Sorry for the long rambling post...and thanks for letting me participate!

JL

Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: Juergen on August 30, 2006, 06:30:29 pm
Nice turnout! I really enjoyed listening to the (sometimes very) different sonic interpretations. I did look at the whole thing but didn't really get to mixing it, so I'll spare my comments for next time when I do participate.  Smile
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: ATOR on August 30, 2006, 06:33:33 pm
Rankus

ATOR:
Good Mix! (Mastered ?) (MASTERED!!!) Dood this is a "mix" project.... decent mix though.

Nope, not mastered just an UAD prec limiter shaving off peaks. I do some mastering, like more guys over here I know from Brads place, so maybe I'm more focussed on getting a 'mastered' sounding result.

Undertow

ATOR: A bit sharp but nice full spectrum mix. (I like that). Did you replace the kick? It is a bit prominant. You made the mix quite loud (like me). I'm not sure this was the intention. Smile Vocal nice and clear. Nice width. I like it.

The kick is all original. I used a waves gate to get the length I wanted, an UAD 1176 to shape the envelope, an UAD Pultec to beef it up and another eq for cleaning up some flabbyness.

I didn't make my mix loud but I did try to make a balanced clean mix using very little compression, a lot of level automation and cutting out the frequencies that take up unnecessary space. Because most of the transients are still clean (uncompressed) this does leave a lot of  room to get it loud in mastering. Basicly I made a mix that I'd like to get for a mastering job.

Alistair I missed your mix but will listen to it tomorrow.


Hey Scott, thanks for letting us have a go at your recordings.
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: UnderTow on August 30, 2006, 07:01:23 pm
ATOR wrote on Wed, 30 August 2006 23:33


The kick is all original. I used a waves gate to get the length I wanted, an UAD 1176 to shape the envelope, an UAD Pultec to beef it up and another eq for cleaning up some flabbyness.



Interesting. I like what you did to the sound of the kick (Just a bit loud).

Quote:


I didn't make my mix loud but I did try to make a balanced clean mix using very little compression, a lot of level automation and cutting out the frequencies that take up unnecessary space. Because most of the transients are still clean (uncompressed) this does leave a lot of  room to get it loud in mastering. Basicly I made a mix that I'd like to get for a mastering job.



Good approach it seems. Smile

Quote:


Alistair I missed your mix but will listen to it tomorrow.



Thanks!

Alistair
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: cerberus on August 30, 2006, 07:09:01 pm
UnderTow wrote on Wed, 30 August 2006 17:21

I noticed the overheads issue so I turned the phase of one of the channels by 59 degrees.
how did you do that?

jeff dinces
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: UnderTow on August 30, 2006, 07:29:08 pm
cerberus wrote on Thu, 31 August 2006 00:09

UnderTow wrote on Wed, 30 August 2006 17:21

I noticed the overheads issue so I turned the phase of one of the channels by 59 degrees.
how did you do that?

jeff dinces



Sonar comes with a phase plugin. You can turn the phase from -180 to + 180 degrees.

Alistair
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: Mark.Fassett on August 30, 2006, 08:59:39 pm
I'd post comments on everyone's mixes, except that I don't yet feel qualified to comment seeing as how this was my third complete mix (the other two were IMP5).

I totally missed the out of phase OH, so I'm going to go back when I get a bit of time and play with that and see what the difference is.

I noticed the one vocal track that was out of time, and slid that forward. In the bridge, there are the two different lyrics at the same time, and I dumped the one with the least number of tracks because, to my ear, it just sounded like someone got the line wrong.

I thought the bass was sloppy - lots of pops and buzzes. I ran it through two different compressor plugins, and, at least when mixed with everything else, it seemed to even it out and hide most of the ugliness.

I liked the song, for the most part, but I certainly wasn't ready to deal with so many vocal tracks. Took me what seemed forever to figure out what was what.
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: cerberus on August 30, 2006, 10:08:10 pm
in no particular order:

shakes the clown really nice  balanced mix, i like how the guitars rip well above the bass, but are not harsh.  very masculine bass, maybe slightly overbearing in stature.   i don't favor reverb for this song at all, but it doesn't swamp out the vocal as much as it tended to in other's mixes. i find the vocals here sound very natural  save for reverb which seems to become less obvious as the mix gets denser.

chrisj i think you achieved your stated goals here. perhaps remove the snare fx on the second acoustic break? the punchy snare helps drives the groove, but i think there could still be more nuance to it.

tom c nice feeling dynamics. i like how the guitars and the snare "tear" (as in "rip"...) but i find the mix somewhat hollowed and ringy perhaps from "too much" eq.

j. hall each kick sounds like a large caliber gun shot.... vocals a bit drowned at times.... slappy 'verb in acoustic section seems heavy handed. i think that aside from the kick drum, it is a balanced mix that would flourish as soon as the kick is reduced.

louman brings it on for the 2nd chorus... but up to then, perhaps needs to borrow chrisj's conductor's baton to supplement the groove energy?

nizzle reverb on vocals...  ugh.  sounds like vocal was phoned in from a shower stall... otherwise this is great.  the reverb is too nasty, things seem pitched weird. but i still enjoyed it anyway for sounding "together" like a record should.

dikledoux interesting reverbs.. vocal levels seem a bit off in places... nice burble from the guitars.. drums seem like they're pulling my eardrums a bit.

dikledoux [revised] i got the "police bullhorn thing".. very interesting but not loud or distorted enough.  the other (filtered?) vocals are nice.. sound stressy, but real smooth, has that phil collins exciter effect?    i like how the snare sounds low and lets the brass percussion ring clear like hell's  sleighbells.

ator takes off and flies in the bridge (2nd "how long"). but before that it seems to be a bit meek about spreading it's wings.  cool "avant" drum sound which reminds me of radiohead kid-a... really interesting.

blueboy cool subtexture here on the bass... it works less well for me on the acoustic parts, but it's rich like chocolate in most places..... i like how you let the guitars recede in parts, and then they come back up front, moreso as the song progresses.

blueboy [revision] the effects are working better... everything much better. guitar tones have balls now. bass is better wetter, more rounded off.. very powerful... totally fixed the frogginess.  i love these guitar tones now.... nice fx on "misery".. still a bit obtrusive, the wailing vocals between the second acoustic part and the "how long can you wait".. are perfect.. love that minor harmony...a few "why don't" you come quietly's" sound a bit thin and harsh, but then at the end again, very rich harmonies... would like to hear more of that.

cerberus [282] still too much distortion on vocals during the second acoustic part.  guitars are a bit harsh in upper mids.  tinny overheads. drums not punching through enough. weak bass. guitars are too band limited.. need more articulaton.

garretg the snare sounds real heavy, this is cool... you've removed the more "s and m" leaning lyrics... so it has a way of lightening the mood despite the very metal attitude of the guitars taking over...  then there is the somewhat whimsical percussion treatment towards the end...it  has a sort of air of  playfulness where one might expect the devil to be lurking.

undertow how did you do your bass and kick drum? i really like how this hits me hard in the torso... wow.. the impact and clarity go together... how was that done?      beautiful natural top end too... if slighltly overwhelmed by the bottom, but there are no freq holes. snare is a bit compressed sounding...     nice vocal changeup at the climax.   then bringing on some grit...  what a suberb mix, amazing attention to all kinds of detail, it feels like music.

adam miller decent mix.. i think there are more subtleties to bring out here... less bass perhaps might help me feel it more, but it's hard to tell with a bass this dominant.

calvin i am getting into the articulation of the guitars here, like i can actually imagine a real guitarist or two playing riffs, as opposed to a wall of chaoticsound.  the groove is fairly strong, but as it's been pointed out that the overheads have phase problems, perhaps flipping the polarity of one or the other would open it up more.

patrik_t reverb ok. seems like it works well towards the end.. with the layered vocal parts the really big sound is glorious... i really like the  sweet guitar tones without losing the aggression.  this mix fits my general sonic aesthetic more than my own mix does,  very pleasant  sonically...i'd like to hear a more complete mix...

max this is really smooth..and clear.... except for the vocals, which sound uncompleted and disjointed in parts...  i hope others will see what can be done with no bus compression.   i like the so called: "out of time vocals..."  makes it interesting for humans, imo.  strange which vocals are missing here.... similar cuts as garret made.

nick t this one has me groovin'.... i find it a very flawed mix technically, but i cannot stop moving. this mix is like a drug for me: if i turn it up it's way harsh on top, but at low levels i simply feel the music.   the "how long can you wait" part takes me even higher.... the "before it's too late" vocal part is missing.. that is essential to the song, imo. i feel an empty space needs to be filled there. so i wonder why you didn't use it?

vkorehov very strange and chaotic...timing sounds sloppy. good separation on the guitars..  the filtered vocal is a bit distant. that keyboard thing is weird!     compression sounds like it's being played like an overstressed instrument.. like some guitars are ducking other ones.  cool.. but is very messy sounding, very different from what i'm used to hearing,  or would expect.

mfassett  kinda murky bottom, i guess there are reverbs on the drums? and compression, no doubt.. nice sharp acoustics punching through and really good vocal sound.  but imo compressors wreck it a bit...the quiet parts are too loud, the loud parts too quiet.   i wonder what it sounds like without bus fx?

rankus  <ery clear guitars, e.g. i hear the slides (cool).. bass however is too "in the head", not thumping in the chest enough, for this reason, it seems too disconnected from the kick which does hit lower.  vocals are also pleasantly clean and clear, as if you spent a good amount of time comping takes and matching them perfectly.  the obvious weirdness in that one instrumental section is kinda "patchy" for me, too much contrast,  and no lead instrument up front; so i don't find it helps the song,

jeff dinces
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: chrisj on August 30, 2006, 11:01:57 pm
I got a certain amount of HAAATE and a certain amount of like from various things of my mix, so I thought I'd do what most people are doing and post what I was trying to accomplish. Evilness included. Free stupidity in every package!  Twisted Evil

I wanted to do a 'Slipperman Homage' type mix without having any idea really how to do one, having never done a heavy rock mix before, plus I only had GarageBand. So basically we're talking Deep Hurting already. Unfortunately, I did not give up Wink

I went into every track and tried to find places to put parametric EQ boosts, all at Q of 10. 'wah pedal left half on' stuff. For instance, the vocal clarity is 9.5 db boost at 3.6K and 7.8 db boost at 17.4K... no compression or other effects of any kind.

The boxy snare is because it's got 11.4 db boost at 3.6K, after a peak limiter with slow attack and fast release. Kick was 11 db at 83 hz also after a peak limiter...

The guitars sound the way they do because they're made up out of two boosts at 280 and 2.6K, 11 and 9 db both at Q 10. This is evil and I would be sorry for killing the guitars, except that I enjoyed it. I need more bands though, to do THAT trick properly.

The bass is an 800 hz boost of about 9 db going into a peak limiter, fastest attack and fast release.

Only thing on the 2-buss is 'Cyanide 2' set to very slightly distort the peaks.

Essentially, everything here is the product of doing it in GarageBand and having only two slots for Audio Units and hating all GarageBand's default FX. Soon I will get Logic Express, and there will be much rejoicing- LogicX's audio engine seems to sound better (well, no 16 bit output anyway) and the channel EQ has four bands all of which will do stupid Q tricks the way I enjoy them. I really can't get sounds this way with a maximum of two narrow bands- you have to build them up from more bands or it's just stupid, plus if I wanted to bring in the peak limiter there's one slot gone already, and the GarageBand compression and verb was just useless presets with one knob for each.

So I wanted to do extremely cruel things while completely lacking the ability to do them properly Very Happy sucks to be me! I still had fun. I know I missed a lot, especially in tonality, because I was doing such sick, sick things Smile part of the reason I got such a boxy sound was I'm a complete 70s head... I need to do what I did better, rather than start trying to do completely unrelated things. I refer to some of the bigger, lusher entries for useful examples of what I missed.

The one thing I saw which it seemed to me most people missed was simply groove- that's why I posted the crazy track-slide picture. Listen to the mix and it should not seem like stuff was slid all over the place, because it was being slid to where it belonged- for example, the whole axis of the band that centered on the kick was quite on top of the beat. The center and stereo guitars weren't in the same place time-wise, and though I didn't try to tune the vocals, the vocals were also often quite on top of the beat and had to slide back until they were part of the groove. I could've got even crazier with regions and fixing little details but I wanted to do OVERALL fixes that got everything cohesive.

So, basically, what I did was crazy evil brain-damaged EQing, virtually no dynamics at all except vicious peak limiting on kick, snare and bass (compressed the overheads with the crappy GB compressor) and major global timing adjustments on absolutely everything- which came out so useful that I am now ready to grab a bunch of 8-track masters onto my computer as stereo pairs. Time-stamping? hahahaha! I'll just slide all the shit around anyway, who cares! Or something Smile

Cheers. If people need to be punished I will do an 'evil chris' crit and pick the one most horrible thing from everyone's mix Smile should only take a few seconds per track as it's usually obvious...
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: maxim on August 30, 2006, 11:53:56 pm
evil is good

it's nice to have one's ego stroked, but it's, hardly, instructional
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: NickT on August 31, 2006, 01:05:59 am
Quote:

nick t this one has me groovin'.... i find it a very flawed mix technically, but i cannot stop moving. this mix is like a drug for me: if i turn it up it's way harsh on top, but at low levels i simply feel the music. the "how long can you wait" part takes me even higher.... the "before it's too late" vocal part is missing.. that is essential to the song, imo. i feel an empty space needs to be filled there. so i wonder why you didn't use it?



Well, I am self taught...so I am sure my mix is flawed technically. As far as that vocal line, I don't have it! Smile I would have used it if it were there. I must have lost it in the import.

I would comment on all the mixes, but I agree with most of the statements. I also agree that my mix is to bright. I saw the thread when I got home from work the day it was due. So my ears were pretty fried by the time I posted.

Jeff - I would love to hear from you in a PM about the technical shortcomings of my mix. I am always trying to learn.

Thanks,

Nick
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: cerberus on August 31, 2006, 01:54:25 am
chris; i can't tell how many samples you slid the tracks... a few?  tens?  hundreds?

also pm me if you want to buy a license for logic "pro" real cheap.
-
nick, sure,  i will do it in the next day. and please do the same for me, i'll be revising my own mix further since i think that the best way to learn is to actually get it right.

jeff dinces
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: Patrik T on August 31, 2006, 07:22:36 am
Here are some comments. It amuses me how many that writes these comments actually go out for finding faults without looking at the craft or how the unity in the song feels. AKA the big picture. Or, as I will end this post with - the big picture within a smokey pile of debris.


Lou: This is wiiiiiide. Maybe too wide. I also feel that mono compability is overrated, but this is perhaps on the very edge. The sound is soft, sweet and nice.

Ator: United. Good mix. The huge kick-klick is very attention-drawing. I think 2-buss processing should never include any limiter at the mix stage...

Rankus: The big pic is great here. The acoustic parts are very moody - your mix there makes the hairs stand out on my arms. You've nailed the mood there! Natural tone and rigid classic tone over-all. Smokey flangey Cobainic stuff.

Dik: United. Goody-goody mix. Acoustic passage #1 might still be a bit too high to go with the following chorus-thing. But over-all it is very good. Thank you for not articualting more than it is.

Calvin: Balanced and alive. Cool guitar shift at the "how long"-part at around 3:00. Very effective.

Cerberus: Surgical feeling, very articulated. Some kewl fret-things which are unpresent in other mixes. The tonality is very united, but the big picture is perhaps not very gathered. I really like the weird little noises and things that comes up here and there. Is the vox tuned?

ChrisJ: Snare a'la Eric B & Rakim. This mix is freakingly funny and I love it. I instantly get this feeling: I am in a house's basement watching the band from 10 feet distance. There are two guitar amps put in closets with closed doors which are really mooooaning in there. It is kewl, old-skool and the mix is entertaining cause it's very alive.

Nick T: Loud!?! Controlled. But aren't the vox disattached from the tone on the remaining musical mass? Might be. Good mix.

M Fassett: There is one instant thing i kinda feel here - I can almost see the kick pedal move through the air and go bang into the kick, like as if the mic is attached to the pedal itself and that is beyond kewl! Very swell feeling. Good balance, good unity and good big P. Pleasing tone. 2-buss limiter?

Nizzle: Good united tone thorughout the mix and the mix is good.

Blueboy: Kewl mix with a lot of edge. The bass is...funky.

Adam: Good big picture! That snare is...very controlled. Good mix, the tune is certainly there.

Vkorehov: Smokey pads, Vangelis!  Smile  The mix is good but there is a barrier here - the comp issues draws too much attention to them. Sidechain or whatever it is - that processing is overshadowing the music itself and it is kind of ironic since you earlier mentioned reverbs should be used with care. I think comps should be used with equal care.

Tom C: Good mix. Very articulated. Feels like you could stuff up 40-100 a little more, but the other aspects are just fine (big p, unity and so on...).

Garret: The mix is dancing. It is united. The snare draws my attention from the singer in the verses.

Undertow: Maybe a bit heavy on the bottom, maybe not. The mix is great but how much of that comes from the GR and level-increase on the 2-buss? Isn't this one going too far into mastering-land? Whassup with the 476 kbps by the way?

Jhall: As you indicated earlier, the comp things draws too much attention to themselves. I really like the vocal treatment, cause it brings some kind of Elvis/funkis thing to it. Soft, united and great big picture.


And finally (this will be a small essay):

Max: I have already seen some comments regarding your mix which are brutal. No need to worry about that man, you know what you are doing and you've done something that is beyond great - this is classic music. I was easily drawn to brutal conclusions as well at first, but found that your mix is the one that I come back to, time after time. I'm glad I came back to it, because as it is now - this one rock's my boat extremely much.

The bass is dominant, no wait, at spots it is. Vox goes with bass and acoustic guitar - drums with distorted guitars. Like two different soundscapes in one. Two-headed unity that shifts itself. Like a cobra transforming to a rattlesnake and then to a lizard. Ths mix smokes! It is unpredictability de luxe. The sounds are sweet, good, nice, rich. And especially one thing: At around 3:00 when the "hooow long will..."-part start, you ignite that one with the absoultely most effective guitar sound that kills any other mix at that spot instantly, period. RIght there you've just raced your F1 car across the finish line. It can not be made any better. That guitar sound along with the vox is what makes great music great. That very part along with the totally smoked soundscape is turning everything onto the genious side. This mix is very easy to sidekick as being "bad", "off" or whatever doesn't suit perfection for the day but - I swear to god - if the people who have wrote such comments will revisit this mix, listen to what it has got and find the excellence they might be freaked by how much fresh breezes you blow into evey aspect of music, mix and everything.

Max, I love your mix and your mix is like two open arms that embrace me again and again, every single time I listen to this piece of music. And guess what - the song is there, it really is. It comes up at the 2:nd listen as natural as in any polished and perfect version at the first. The difference thereafter is that your mix invites me back, over and over again. You are in a land of making music classic, dramatic, sensible, alive, crazed out, full of love and not just forgotten within a month and big, big kudos to you for reminding me of this very vital aspect of mixing.


Best Regards
Patrik
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: maxim on August 31, 2006, 07:54:57 am
patrick wrote:

"...this very vital aspect of mixing"

thank you for your lovely words, patrick

while i, fully, recognise the technical shortcomings of my mixing, my goal for this (and, hopefully, any other) track, was to make it special, a presentation in itself

the "shifting scenes" effect was achieved, partly, by comping two bounces together, with different amounts of ambience and balances

when i listened back, i realised i liked the verses from one and the choruses from the other, so i frankensteined them together

the rest was spontaneous with a fair amount of fader rides

i wish i got more punch from the drums, like some of the guys did

i also wish i had the mastering engineer sprinkle some gold dust

all in all, it is a great honour and a huge learning experience to mix someone else's tracks

i know some of you do it all the time, but it's a novel experience for me
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: UnderTow on August 31, 2006, 08:15:04 am
Patrik T wrote on Thu, 31 August 2006 12:22



Undertow: Maybe a bit heavy on the bottom, maybe not. The mix is great but how much of that comes from the GR and level-increase on the 2-buss? Isn't this one going too far into mastering-land?



Could well be. Smile Force of habit I guess ...

Quote:


Whassup with the 476 kbps by the way?



Is that what your player tells you? If so, it is very confused as 476 Kbps MP3s don't exist. Smile The MP3 is 192 Kbps.

Alistair
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: Patrik T on August 31, 2006, 08:22:50 am
UnderTow wrote on Thu, 31 August 2006 13:15


Is that what your player tells you? If so, it is very confused as 476 Kbps MP3s don't exist. Smile The MP3 is 192 Kbps.
Alistair


Leftclicking the file, checking the properties in windows on two different computers (one with xp home and the other with xp pro) says 476 kbps. As did WMA.
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: Patrik T on August 31, 2006, 08:33:57 am
maxim wrote on Thu, 31 August 2006 12:54

i also wish i had the mastering engineer sprinkle some gold dust



No, you wouldn't do that. There is nothing that mastering would do to make this "better". Your mix is so special that it should be left as is. It's a contra-mix. I just listened to the glorious 3:01 part again - it's natural. It is the songs big pivot point. There is no space for any drums there. That guitar you've come up with is like the only way and the only truth there. Amazing, amazing power. Listen to the other mixes at the same point to see what kind of nuclear bomb you've actually got going there. Nevermind the drums, it's all about placing power and you found it was located in the guitar.

Instead of thinking you are lacking something I would like to encourage you to polish up those philosophies without getting into polished-land if you get my drift. You have some serious sense for the mood-thing. Something that has been very lost in modern music. Something you will loose if you start to analyze things too much. I want a hi-res wav-file of your mix to put in a fire-proof locker, seriously.

You've certainly inspired me to return to 15 year old philosophies of my own.

Best Regards
Patrik
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: UnderTow on August 31, 2006, 08:56:40 am
Patrik T wrote on Thu, 31 August 2006 13:22


Leftclicking the file, checking the properties in windows on two different computers (one with xp home and the other with xp pro) says 476 kbps. As did WMA.



On my PC it says 192 Kbps in the properties. Very weird. Do you have Windows Media Player set as the default player for MP3s? Maybe that is affecting things. (WMP isn't very good. It is amazing the number of people that have complained to me about the sound in their PC. I tell them to ditch WMP and use Winamp instead. All problems gone).

Alistair
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: ATOR on August 31, 2006, 09:30:07 am
Some guys I left out in my first review:

Alistair
Nice! Massive and direct, I like that. Bassguitar could use some taming.
Leadvocal timing is off in some places, there’s a sound as if something hits a mic around 3:30.

Patrick T
Too much reverb, everything sounds distant
Balance of instruments is good, chorus vocals are burried
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: UnderTow on August 31, 2006, 09:39:37 am
You are making me blush Jeff! Smile

cerberus wrote on Thu, 31 August 2006 03:08



undertow how did you do your bass and kick drum? i really like how this hits me hard in the torso... wow.. the impact and clarity go together... how was that done?      beautiful natural top end too... if slighltly overwhelmed by the bottom, but there are no freq holes. snare is a bit compressed sounding...     nice vocal changeup at the climax.   then bringing on some grit...  what a suberb mix, amazing attention to all kinds of detail, it feels like music.



I think what worked for me was the lack of time. I didn't over think any decisions (something I am prone to). I kept it simple and just went with my first gut instinct every time. I'll give full details on what I did with the kick/bass:

Bass: Renaissance EQ: Hipass 50Hz, +3.1 dB 156Hz, -2.8 dB 248 Hz, +3.5 dB 1456 HZ, Lowpass 10Khz. Endorphin compressor: First time I used this plug so I selected the "Loud and Punchy" preset and increased the input trim untill it was giving me a sound I liked and that was it (arround 1-1.5 dB GR on the loudest peaks). Off to the stereo bus.

Kick: A look ahead expander/gate that opens about 4ms before the kick hits (Sonitus gate). Renaissance EQ: -2.7 dB 132 Hz, +2.6 dB 60 Hz (Q 3.34) -3.3 dB 250Hz, Lowpass 5150Hz (Q 1.41). Off to drums bus.

(All the Renaissance Qs I don't specify are at the default 0.8 ).

Drums bus: Voxengo Crunchessor in 2X oversampling mode: Mode Crisp 1, Style Punch, Drive 6.6 dB, Attack 14.4 ms, Release 50 ms. There is about 0.5-1 dB GR on the loudest peaks. Voxengo HarmoniEQ: +3.6 dB shelf starting at 4.69 Khz. (This EQ doesn't affect the dry signal. It adds harmonics which makes it sound nice and natural Smile ). Dominion: Attack level 10, length 52ms, Saturation 35, soft/hard 36, HF detail 2Khz level 50, Sustain level 9 duration 185 ms. Off to stereo bus.

These Digital Fish Phones plugins (Dominion and Endorphin) sound very good. Especially considering they are free!

Alistair
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: UnderTow on August 31, 2006, 09:43:15 am
ATOR wrote on Thu, 31 August 2006 14:30

Some guys I left out in my first review:

Alistair
Nice! Massive and direct, I like that. Bassguitar could use some taming.
Leadvocal timing is off in some places,



Thanks! Smile

Quote:


there’s a sound as if something hits a mic around 3:30.



Oops! One of the kick hits got chewed by the expander/gate. I missed that. The threshold should have been a touch lower.

Alistair
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: Nizzle on August 31, 2006, 09:58:52 am
cerberus wrote on Thu, 31 August 2006 03:08



nizzle reverb on vocals...  ugh.  sounds like vocal was phoned in from a shower stall... otherwise this is great.  the reverb is too nasty, things seem pitched weird. but i still enjoyed it anyway for sounding "together" like a record should.





Didn't use any reverb anywhere.....all delays. No pitch correction on anything....I kept everything on the Natch. Of course - that doesn't change the fact that you didn't dig it......67ms. slap in the verses and 300ms-ish delays in the bridge - I think it's all appropriate....That's the beauty in art...One man's Filet Mignon is anothers shit sandwhich.

I appreciate everyones comments.

-t
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: cerberus on August 31, 2006, 01:14:40 pm
Patrik T wrote on Thu, 31 August 2006 07:22

Is the vox tuned?
yes, but crudely, due to time constraints. i was taken by the vocalist's vibrato, which i wanted to emphasize. i tuned the vox and then again backwards... combining these together can sometimes reduce the typical artifacts of tuning, but also slight differences cancel and re-enforce, exagerrating the warble, and especially with this vibrato.   the original vocals are in there too, but usually polarity inverted and often crosspanned, mixed in lightly.  this always makes a detuned chorus effect, but an animated one.

the technique can tend to create flange and phase effects which i often like on the vox (by mixing more of the untuned vocal with the tuned; i used it that way on imp5.)  but here, i tried to minimize this phasing effect.  for the most part, all the vocal fx come from this tuning method. i did not eq the vocals at all. towards the end, i bussed them all to add a slight amount of parallel comp to smooth things out and allow the lyrics to be more intelligible when i wanted to cut some gain. but that is a minor tweak; there is basically nothing on the vocals except for this tuning method.

the singer was pitchy up and down, not consistently flat or sharp, so the amount of warbling, the vibrato some other "micro-timbral" modulation characteristics could be modulated themselved on the three faders i ended up with for each vocal part.

one can really hear the effect on the second acoustic break part: it's way overdone there. but i'm glad none of the critiques so far said: "too synthetic".

UnderTow wrote on Thu, 31 August 2006 09:39

 think what worked for me was the lack of time. I didn't over think any decisions (something I am prone to). I kept it simple and just went with my first gut instinct every time. I'll give full details on what I did with the kick/bass:
so it was you, not your gear or some magic bullet secret... figures.   i will need to take this advice, not copy settings! my mix topography is different, so your specific kick and bass chain would not automatically fit with the rest of my mix.

you've hit on something  that patrik and a few others said: now with all these critiques about elements, the big picture can easily get obscured.  so i need to have nice tones, and nice dynamics and... clear vocals, louder drums that swing more, a sexy bass, etc.  but... the listener needs to feel the song, not my gear or even my own daft moves.

jeff dinces
Title: Re: IMP666 discussion
Post by: rankus on August 31, 2006, 01:53:52 pm
j.hall wrote on Wed, 30 August 2006 14:20

rankus......lots of comments on murky low mids......you got a low mid bump in your acoustics?




Hi J.  This is a possibility.... I am listening at home where I live on my boat, so the speakers (Tannoy PBM 6.5's) which are already a little dark, are stuck in corners.

But that said, I do compare/listen to commercial mixes on this system... I will take the MP3's to the studio and have a listen there and report back. Thanks for the heads up.... This indeed may be on my end.
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: dikledoux on September 01, 2006, 01:29:07 pm
cerberus wrote on Wed, 30 August 2006 22:08

dikledoux interesting reverbs.. vocal levels seem a bit off in places... nice burble from the guitars.. drums seem like they're pulling my eardrums a bit.

That's the little know burble-puller plugin.  I use it on everything  Laughing   The reverb is just the toms run through the room section of a useful reverb and then compressed all to heck.  I figured there weren't any toms, so I'd make room mics where there were none.  There is some actual verb on the guits, but not much, and echo on the vocals rather than verb.

cerberus wrote on Wed, 30 August 2006 22:08


dikledoux [revised] i got the "police bullhorn thing".. very interesting but not loud or distorted enough.  the other (filtered?) vocals are nice.. sound stressy, but real smooth, has that phil collins exciter effect?    i like how the snare sounds low and lets the brass percussion ring clear like hell's  sleighbells.

I'm in agreement - shoulda trashed the vocs and if I'da had one I'd have used an actual bullhorn complete with fizzy-squealy sounds.  Glad you like the stressed vocs.  I took one of the double tracks and just trashed it completely and then blended to taste.

Over the past year or two I've come to realize that on a rock song there's a LOT of latitude in how much you trash up a vocal.  I've just destroyed stuff and in the mix it just works, but I should've been more obnoxious still with the bullhorn effect.

dik
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: scott volthause on September 01, 2006, 02:08:45 pm
Just be careful. You only get to use the bullhorn / radio voice ONCE in your career before it becomes trite. Choose wisely.
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: ShakesTheClown on September 01, 2006, 02:41:31 pm
I liked the Bullhorn alot.  It really kinda made the mix for me.

Wish I'd thought of it...

I'm just glad that I could participate.  This is probably one of the most fun learning experiences umm....ever.  I'm pretty much into wuss music so the heavy rock thing was different.

I was unsure whether to get creative or play it safe.  I opted for safe.  Next time I will go balls out because...why not?
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: chrisj on September 01, 2006, 07:29:46 pm
dikledoux wrote on Fri, 01 September 2006 13:29

The reverb is just the toms run through the room section of a useful reverb and then compressed all to heck.  I figured there weren't any toms, so I'd make room mics where there were none.


I did that as well! I smashed the hell out of the toms track with compression (can't remember if there were multiple tom tracks- I copied them together) hoping that instead of verb I could get the heads ringing Smile

Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: dikledoux on September 01, 2006, 09:13:03 pm
By the way, j. hallster - this is a VERY neat event.  Tons of interaction, lotta eye openers.  I like the short time window as well.  Means you get in, do your thing, discuss, and you're out.  The payback/hour is great!

CaPE is great as a networking/planning exercise, but this is a whole 'nother animal.  Thanks for putting it on.  And thanks Scott for the tracks - people talkin' bout the sonic issues HAH!  I WISH people would bring me tracks like this <g>.

dik
Title: Re: IMP666 discussion
Post by: rankus on September 02, 2006, 01:14:34 pm
rankus wrote on Thu, 31 August 2006 10:53

j.hall wrote on Wed, 30 August 2006 14:20

rankus......lots of comments on murky low mids......you got a low mid bump in your acoustics?




I will take the MP3's to the studio and have a listen there and report back. Thanks for the heads up.... This indeed may be on my end.



OK.  I listened to all the mixes again at the studio with better acoustics.

I still hear some issues in low end on several of the mixes, but I feel that it is more of a bass gtr to kik drum thing rather than low mids... in some cases they are fighting for space a lot...

So, long story short: I recant my comments on low mids muddiness, and say that more attention to the bass gtr and kik is in order on some of the mixes.

J Hall, your mix is damned good on my system with the sub pumping.  The comp still pumps, but you knew that.  

I am amazed by the level of quality here guys... at least 50% of the mixes were damned good, and highly listenable.

Scott:  I like this song even more after listening again! The singer has a killer voice.
Title: Re: IMP666 discussion
Post by: j.hall on September 03, 2006, 03:36:50 pm
rankus wrote on Sat, 02 September 2006 12:14



OK.  I listened to all the mixes again at the studio with better acoustics.



thanks for taking the extra time to do that.

Quote:


J Hall, your mix is damned good on my system with the sub pumping.  The comp still pumps, but you knew that.  




yeah, and the kick sample i went with was the wrong choice, i just didn't have time to really dig into this tune........but that's no disclaimer, i'd recall the mix for the buss compression and be happy to have my name on it.
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: garret on September 06, 2006, 11:12:40 pm
K, back when we were planning IMP6, I posted some high and mighty suggestion that everyone who enters try to post some comments... and then I got swamped.  ack.

But I'm unswamped now, and had some time to listen to the mixes tonight...   I made it through 2/3 of them before my ears wore out... i'll try to get to the rest tomorrow.

-Garret

-------------------------------
cerberus - not too shabby.. the reamping has greatly changed the tone of the guitars (very pinched/high mids/buzzy/thrashy now).. reminds me of the pixies somehow, can't decide if I like it or hate it.  Vocal timing problems do bother me.... and the mix doesn't sound completely glued together (I hear very discrete tracks of sound, rather than a band!)

dikledoux - great job... one of my favs.    Nicely balanced, with terrific energy.  Vocal timing problems are hidden, and the track just grooves...  

rankus – great drum mix. yay giant snare.   I like the snare treatment and level in this... similar to what I did (thought I think I went too far).  Nicely balanced and powerful...  one of my favorites.

Calvin – good solid mix... somehow the vocal timing problems just sound stylish in your mix, where they sound off in other mixes... i like the delay on the vocal.... nicely balanced and wound like a tight spring.

Fornever-01.mp3 (unknown person) -  more bass than many of the other mixes, but it works... i like the tone you've achieved there.. I gotta see if you posted notes on how you treated the bass.  Vox sounds good throughout.. might be mixed a bit high at times, but you've brought out the best character in the vox for sure.    One of my favs.

J – rawk music!   Yah, the kick is wrong, especially in the quieter bits... but otherwise this mix is very very good.     Nicely balanced, powerful, and loaded with style...

ator - in many ways this is a fantastic mix....  one of my favorites, with great energy and balance.   Question though: did you de-ess the vocals?   I hear a pronounced lisp now.  Maybe it's something in my monitoring system... hmmm.  Whatever it is, it's bad news.

Nickt – out of balance somehow (scooped?)... hats seem way high, vocal doesn't sit right in the mix and the timing probs bug me.  Lacks body and power...

chrisJ – sounds very wide and unglued (I hear lots of discrete tracks but they don't combine to make something unified).  Snare treatment makes it sound really cheap... what reverb is that?  Vocal dynamics often jump out of the mix... a touch undercompressed perhaps?


Louman – freq balance is off somehow, but I can't tell you exactly what it is... biggest prob for me is when the track strangely gets quieter when you'd think it should get louder (3:02 or so).   Seriously disorienting, that. Wink  had to listen a few more times to make sure it wasn't my ears suddenly cloggin up.

Max – some funny stuff going on in this for my ears... levels jumping around, delays on the drums throwing off the groove... freq balance is very good though, and the mix is stylish...  

Mfassett – vox is a too low, and the kick is a bit much.... otherwise this is a very good mix.   Freq balance is pushed a bit toward the bottom end, but everything sounds good and works together to make something unified and rockin.

Garret – damn that snare reverb is huge.   Huuuuge.   Toooo huuuge.  Needs more bass... (too midsy).  What did you do, mix this in a couple hours?  (yes!)

ForneverMix – 8-26.mp3  (person unknown) – mastered already?  Sometimes hard to eval a mix when it's been mashed.  Drums sound off to my ears...
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: ATOR on September 07, 2006, 05:12:37 am
garretg wrote on Thu, 07 September 2006 05:12

ator - in many ways this is a fantastic mix....  one of my favorites, with great energy and balance.   Question though: did you de-ess the vocals?   I hear a pronounced lisp now.  Maybe it's something in my monitoring system... hmmm.  Whatever it is, it's bad news.


Thanx Garret.

About the lisp, there's nothing wrong with your monitoring it's a lisp alright Crying or Very Sad

I added quiet a lot of highs to the lead vox and the sibilance went trough the roof so I tried a couple of de-essers and ended up with manually cutting loose the esses and turning them down on the lead and spitfish on the backing vocals.

The esses were turned down too much so I ended up in the lisp zone, but I still think they stand out too much. For this lead to get the esses right I'd need some sort of drumagog ess-replacer because it's not just the level but also the sound of the sibilance that needs to be changed. It's as if the sibilance made the microphone membrane resonate.
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: Adam Miller on September 07, 2006, 06:11:29 am
I'm back.

I literally haven't listened to single piece of music over the past ten days, save the sounds of nature and the cruel and unusual cacophony of snoring Slovenian hikers. I'd recommend it as a way of clearing the head and ears.

Thanks to all who commented on my mix- I think I did something right there, although it does sound a bit briggggghhhht on a return listen.

I'll try as best I can to remember the outlines of what I did.

I thought the track was perfect for a big, phat rock treatment in the vein of Andy Wallace or whichever 3-named superstar mix engineer you could care to name.

Basic points:

Drums- Good playing, average but useable recording. Ohs out of phase with each other. Possibly then out of phase with snare mic- always check this relationship as matter of course. Snare and kick a little pedestrian- needed to slam a little more. I started off with a monster sample treatment, but realised that it sounded worse than the recorded drums themselves. I went back to the originals, got them sounding as good as possible by kosher means, then applied a light blend of samples in background just to let them cut through the guitars.

Drum verb mostly from Waves IR-1, using big, bombastic patch with the convolution time taken down to 0.3 secs for an instant gated ambience. Drum subgroup compressed with Sonalksis compressor.

Guits- Well recorded, but on the harsh side. Fair whack of Eq using URS Neve graphic, then just a matter of panning and balancing appropriately. In some sections I pitchshifted 2 tracks down an octave, eq'd heavily then blended in the background just to give the sound a little more girth.

Bass- a bit farty- I just used a stack of EQ from Waves Q to scoop out everything between 160 to 400, then compressed twice- once to take down the popping peaks and once to even out overall level. Bass then distorted twice, using amplitube and Quadrafuzz.

Vox- well recorded. I'll basically fix anything that pisses me off when I'm mixing, so I just shifted bits of BVs by hand to where I thought they sounded right and blended together. Essentially a load of compression and EQ on the vocals to get them nicely upfront in the mix. In retrospect, probably too much high eq on the voice, but at the time it was the only way I could get them to cut. A real mix engineer with three names would know what to do in that situation. Effects extended as far as a bit of hall reverb and a nice lowpassed delay.

Aside from that, the mix was really a whole stack of automation to keep some dynamic shift between the sections and ensure each part was intelligible.  

Sonalksis compressor sat on the master bus, as did a Waves LinBroadband giving a bit of high boost (probably overcooked in retrospect).
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: Adam Miller on September 07, 2006, 06:37:49 am
I tried to listen to as many of the mixes as I could- all the Yousendit links are now gone so I had to miss those- apologies to anyone else I may have inadvertently missed.

In no special order:

Dickledoux- Best blend of everything, I thought. Good Power. Drums a little boxy- overall slightly muffled? The vox treatment works, as does the edit(s?).

Blueboy- another good one, a bit of a hole in the low mids maybe? Bass still a bit farty. Like the vox.

Nick T- Too scooped- I think it looses meat in the guitars. Good vox FX. Maybe a little bright overall. Unshifted Bvs are a bit distracting.

Rankus- A bit muffled in the high mids. Drums maybe too roomy. A good overall balance between the elements, and nice acoustic bits. Loses Brownie points for not shifting the BVs, but otherwise good.

Garrett- A bit thin on the bottom, and muffled in the upper mids. Good wall of sound in the choruses. Interesting stoner ending!

Louman- Sounds thin and papery- check your monitoring? Big shifts in the level of the guitars between verse and chorus. Unshifted BVs are distracting to me.

Max- Not my cup of tea at all... sorry.

JHall- Big pumping, as has been discussed at length.... Otherwise, great guitars, probably the best on show here, good vox treatment, I like the overall aggression. Kick comes at the expense of the snare a little.

Chris J- Sounds like wierd, pointed comb filtering going on in the guitars. Vox seem too dry and close for my taste. Where have the cymbals gone?

Tom C- Decent mix. Snare a bit pointy and lacking in mojo. A good blend of vox, and good overall balance.

A big thanks to Tom for hosting my file, I really appreciate it  Smile

Thanks to Scott for putting the track out there too- I enjoy mixing this kind of music- I thought the song was rather good, as was the tracking.

Of course, a big thanks to J for organising the whole shebang.

Cheers,

Adam
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: ATOR on September 07, 2006, 10:19:16 am
Adam Miller wrote on Thu, 07 September 2006 12:11

Guits- Well recorded, but on the harsh side. Fair whack of Eq using URS Neve graphic, then just a matter of panning and balancing appropriately. In some sections I pitchshifted 2 tracks down an octave, eq'd heavily then blended in the background just to give the sound a little more girth.



Hey Adam, I really like your guitars especially the separation. It almost sounds as if it was recorded using different amp/guitars. Did you eq each guitar to have it's own freq space? Could you elaborate some more on what you did. I tried copying your guitar sound but couldn't get there.


Maybe I oughta get myself some snoring Slovenian hikers to clear my ears too  Very Happy
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: Adam Miller on September 07, 2006, 03:27:03 pm
Hi Pieter- thanks for the kind words.

Guitars were really just done with EQ- generally as a subgroup, although I did tweak the sound on a track-by-track basis across the different sections of the song though. I'm not sure it's really noticeable unless you were purposefully looking out for it, though.

The basic sound is really the URS eq- I gave the guitars a little nudge at 110Hz, pulled a fair bit out at 700 and 1.6kHz and then a little bump up at 7K just to pull the leading edge out. I followed the URS with a waves q, Hipassing at 80Hz-ish and lowpassing around 8kHz. I also did another midrange cut around 1.2k with a fairly tight Q.

With distorted guitars, it's really a matter of carving out enough space to be able to push them nice and high in the mix without treading all over everything else. It's very definitely the kind of thing to do whilst listening to the whole track, rather than just the guitars in isolation (something I still do way too much of). The rest is just balancing up the individual tracks- I like it nice and wide, so at least L and R tracks hard panned, and preferably another track down the middle so the whole thing doesn't competely collapse in mono. And really, that's about it, I think.
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: garret on September 08, 2006, 12:59:14 am
garretg wrote on Wed, 06 September 2006 23:12


But I'm unswamped now, and had some time to listen to the mixes tonight...   I made it through 2/3 of them before my ears wore out... i'll try to get to the rest tomorrow.



Scratch that plan!  Very Happy

My wife had a baby this morning at 7 am... so I'm, er, busy...

Big un, 9 lbs even, 20 1/2 inches, firstname Henry...  almost as big as his older brother (now 3 years old) was....

Not sure if/when I'll be able to get back to this...  

-G
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: maxim on September 08, 2006, 01:14:57 am
congratulations!!!
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: Tom C on September 08, 2006, 04:53:26 am
garretg wrote on Fri, 08 September 2006 06:59


Scratch that plan!  Very Happy

My wife had a baby this morning at 7 am... so I'm, er, busy...

Big un, 9 lbs even, 20 1/2 inches, firstname Henry...  almost as big as his older brother (now 3 years old) was....

Not sure if/when I'll be able to get back to this...  

-G



Congrats!
You'll have time to listen to the mixes during the sleepless
nights during the next weeks  Very Happy
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: ATOR on September 08, 2006, 06:46:34 am
Adam Miller wrote on Thu, 07 September 2006 21:27

Hi Pieter- thanks for the kind words.

Guitars were really just done with EQ- generally as a subgroup, although I did tweak the sound on a track-by-track basis across the different sections of the song though. I'm not sure it's really noticeable unless you were purposefully looking out for it, though.

The basic sound is really the URS eq- I gave the guitars a little nudge at 110Hz, pulled a fair bit out at 700 and 1.6kHz and then a little bump up at 7K just to pull the leading edge out. I followed the URS with a waves q, Hipassing at 80Hz-ish and lowpassing around 8kHz. I also did another midrange cut around 1.2k with a fairly tight Q.

With distorted guitars, it's really a matter of carving out enough space to be able to push them nice and high in the mix without treading all over everything else. It's very definitely the kind of thing to do whilst listening to the whole track, rather than just the guitars in isolation (something I still do way too much of). The rest is just balancing up the individual tracks- I like it nice and wide, so at least L and R tracks hard panned, and preferably another track down the middle so the whole thing doesn't competely collapse in mono. And really, that's about it, I think.


Thanks, it's not that different from what I did but I guess small  differences can make a big difference in a mix.

You are absolutely right about Eqing while listening to the whole mix. I used to make all single tracks sound good and ended up with a horrible mix. Now I've found that the 'ugly' (boxy, honky) frequencies that make a single track sound bad are often needed to make a mix.

The more I learn how to mix, the more I find out that getting things right is a matter of details. Half a dB here and there can make the difference between an ok and a great mix.

I'll see if I can get my mix up a notch.

Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: ATOR on September 08, 2006, 06:49:18 am
garretg wrote on Fri, 08 September 2006 06:59

garretg wrote on Wed, 06 September 2006 23:12


But I'm unswamped now, and had some time to listen to the mixes tonight...   I made it through 2/3 of them before my ears wore out... i'll try to get to the rest tomorrow.



Scratch that plan!  Very Happy

My wife had a baby this morning at 7 am... so I'm, er, busy...

Big un, 9 lbs even, 20 1/2 inches, firstname Henry...  almost as big as his older brother (now 3 years old) was....

Not sure if/when I'll be able to get back to this...  

-G


Congratulations !!!
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: UnderTow on September 08, 2006, 09:37:34 am
garretg wrote on Fri, 08 September 2006 05:59


My wife had a baby this morning at 7 am... so I'm, er, busy...
-G


Congratulations!  Smile

Alistair
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: j.hall on September 08, 2006, 12:14:08 pm
WHOA.  nicely done garret.

kids rule, two kids is a challenge in those new born weeks, but it's still awesome.

guess you're out for IMP7 eh?
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: cerberus on September 08, 2006, 06:38:35 pm
 congrats on expanding your family garret.
garretg wrote on Wed, 06 September 2006 23:12

the mix doesn't sound completely glued together (I hear very discrete tracks of sound, rather than a band!)

right. my mix is completely discrete. all the little bits are summed at one place: [summing!] so i know the  150 or so audio streams mixed together don't add up perfectly...

whatever is "glue" or "togetherness"? yes i needed to increase this. also i used zero reverb, zilch nada...well,  this was a way to save time, reverbs are heavy and tweaky i couldn't use only one, i like to use about eight or more. those were the mixes the clients loved most... when i used to mix.  the ones that took a month to finish!

but this was to try and be fast, and modern. i used to make these wedding cake mixes... i could play you guys some, they are kinda self serving.. "wow, what a deep atmosphere and all".  but also.. were overcooked.   also the process was too slow for  spur of the moment creative and inspirational urges to find much daylight.   i could feel the music kinda fading away as i replaced it with the sound of my gear.

gating the ambience out and replacing it with reverb... i'd do that. but bus compression. not for me. imo, smearing and ringing is not a good "glue" for music. that's how it comes about that i didn't use many bell shaped filters either maybe four total. i ran them backwards.. so they pre-ring.. then i ran them normally and mixed them so the filtered signal would be emphasized by around 6db over any ringing or pre-ringing.

this method affords me a lot of control over tone, but does not provide much in the way of "smeary-tails" to blend with other sounds. eq is delay. enough of it can creep into the time domain and you'll hear delay.  

delay can be useful, if it can be controlled, no doubt.. i should have looked into more creative use of delay here. again, not enough time, delay is tweaky.

perhaps i should do some notching and boosting for the guitars when i revise this mix, to let the highish ones soar more, and let the lower ones growl more, overall, a slight bit less of a screaming group.. that would make them more discrete in fact.. but perhaps fill in the gaps that would seem to need "glue".

if there are no gaps, it will fit together without "glue". that is what i think about craftsmanship and mixing, i hope i can get better at this.

bass needs more help too.   i think about total bass replacement, or at least augmentation... how can this work with twelve electric guitars and one "not so huge" bass?  

bass is a kind of musical glue, imo.. it is not working properly in my mix this way, i think everyone faced that issue. simple compression was not cutting the mustard for me. i already used 2 renbass.. now on to "stage three - manufacturing a new bass tone" ..have done it many times..  i might extract a midi file containing most of the dna from the actual performance, but none of the tone... then exaggerate what is needed to fill in gaps using a synth and/or samples. <example using melodyne : an audio recording of an arpeggiated synth driven by simple midi data is converted to complex midi data, which is then used to trigger a sampled piano.>

if it comes to making a "my bloody valentine" type record however, that is the opposite of the kind of sound i have in my mind for this.. i think kinda more like offspring or greenday i guess: plenty of "geometric" edges, not very smeary.  and  "in your face" guitars, which is reflected in a lot of the comments (not always positively though). i agree that the loose vocals kinda work against that...hmm.. strategy.

jeff dinces
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: garret on September 11, 2006, 01:33:32 pm
Hey, thanks everyone for the kind words.  Everyone's healthy and happy, another big strapping lad... and his older brother is being an angel, we'll see how long that lasts.

Yah, I'm unlikely to enter a mix for imp7 (though we'll see, if I really love the tune i might not be able to resist the urge)...

-Garret
Title: Re: IMP6 discussion
Post by: j.hall on September 12, 2006, 05:43:26 pm
garretg wrote on Mon, 11 September 2006 12:33

and his older brother is being an angel, we'll see how long that lasts.



mine has kept that up for 7 weeks now.  still hoping it sticks.