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audio Outrageous -- just finished this morning

Discussion in 'Fix This MIX!' started by kevinwhitect, Sep 13, 2014.

  1. kevinwhitect

    kevinwhitect Active Member

    View: https://soundcloud.com/kevin-white-2/outrageous

    When I realized I could stay no longer
    As I knew I must be on my way
    Broken hearts when mended
    Will grow stronger
    … and I hoped that I’d get there some day

    When you meet someone
    You greet their sunshine
    Hiding darker shadows
    In shade
    Hard to see around bright smiles
    Hard to see the outline of the strange

    But I learned who you are
    And it was outrageous

    I once thought that love could conquer most things
    I even talked my fears away
    But there comes a moment when you feel
    That to feel again
    You’ve got to change

    For I've seen who you are
    And it was outrageous

    It was a hell of a time (Yes. It was)
    Just a hell of a time (Yes. It was)
    It was a hell of a time (Yes. It was)
    So I changed everything
    Yes I changed everything
    I so changed everything
    Not to walk in a shadow


    I don’t walk behind you any more
    I don’t walk behind you any more
    I don’t walk behind you any more
    I don’t walk behind you any more

    ‘Cause that’s oh so bizarre … and oh so outrageous

    Any/all comment warmly welcome and appreciated.

  2. pcrecord

    pcrecord Don't you want the best recording like I do ? Well-Known Member

    Nice recording, the only thing is drum which is very roomy. It's not really a problem by itself, but the rest of the instruments don't have the same atmosphere and it sounds like they were not recorded in the same room.
  3. DonnyThompson

    DonnyThompson Distinguished Member

    I like it, Kevin.

    The roomy sounding drums aren't bothering me like they are Marco, who tends to prefer the drums to sound like they were recorded in the same space as the other instruments - and there's absolutely nothing wrong with that, either... it's just his preference, and that's totally cool .... but personally, I'm kinda liking the difference - call it "contrast" - in the spaces...

    LOL... see? That's what happens when you play a track to a room full of audio engineers... 10 different guys with 40 different opinions LOL

    What I think you do need to do is work on the lead vocal balance. If you hadn't included the lyrics, I wouldn't have been able to discern many of them.

    Consider getting into the lead vocal track and using a volume envelope tool. Draw the vocal so that it's more even across the song, and then, when you are done, add a slight bit of compression - like 1:5:1 to 2:1 at around -10 db thresh - to the entire vocal track to "glue" it into the mix.

    You may be a bit heavy in the low mids on the mix, it depends on what you are after. I'm certainly not hearing anything harsh sounding, it's very natural sounding, warm and full... just maybe a bit too heavy in the lower low mids.

    I'm really liking the organic sound of this track.

    What DAW platform are you using?
  4. kevinwhitect

    kevinwhitect Active Member

    I could dry the drums up a bit more, Marco, and I would think the mix wouldn't suffer, though. I'll experiment with it. Like Donny, it doesn't bother me that much, but I see your point.

    I use Sonar, Donny, through an Echo Layla. Thanks so much for the note on the vocal track. It's challenging when listening to levels because, well, I wrote the words and so I hear them MUCH more clearly in the mix than most would. That dynamic alone probably tricks my brain into thinking they're clearer than they really are. Yet, your comment mirrors almost exactly another on another audio board ... which is why I post my mixes in several place ... to see if there is a consensus of opinion. In this case, right out of the gate, there was on the vocal being inconsistent. I'll tend to it.

    I purposefully kept the arrangement as a simple acoustic sounding piece ... with mild electronic flourishes. My fancy on it is the use of the finger harp following the tag line. I was amazed it worked.
  5. kevinwhitect

    kevinwhitect Active Member

    I just tended to the mix ... drums not addressed yet, but I did want to stabilize the vocals. New (hopefully improved) mix is on above link. Better?
  6. pcrecord

    pcrecord Don't you want the best recording like I do ? Well-Known Member

    I guess the snare can always cope with more room/reverb to have some lenght and dimention.
    If you would decide to do minimal lowering of the reverb, I'd start with the hi-hat.
    Now this is a very personal taste that maybe no one else will share, but when I close my eyes and listen to a song, I hope to feel that the musicians are all together in the same place. I'm pursuing this when mixing. But there's no bad way to do it as long as you end up with what you wanted.
  7. kevinwhitect

    kevinwhitect Active Member

    I'd almost taken most of the hi hat mic down completely ... so that what's left IS mostly the room sound ... which MAY be what you're hearing ... the predominance of the sound is not direct ... it's the room. I can take the room mic down for the hat ... which will bring it more up front an intimate (I'll bring the direct mic up instead) ... but good ears, Marco. You did catch that the there was an imbalance of space there.
  8. pcrecord

    pcrecord Don't you want the best recording like I do ? Well-Known Member

    If what I hear is the room though the overheads, you may want to remove some compression on them(if there is any) ;)
    Only, adding the direct mic will put the level of the hat higher, you need to be carefull with that.
    What ever you do make sure it sounds better to you !!!
  9. pcrecord

    pcrecord Don't you want the best recording like I do ? Well-Known Member

    It's hard to make recommendation when you haven't heard the raw tracks...
    One might think a sound comes from the mix while in fact it's comming from the recording process.
  10. DonnyThompson

    DonnyThompson Distinguished Member

    Still needs work Kevin... it's better... but one of the things that is still buried is the actual hook line itself "it was outrageous". You hit the nail on the head as to why these are buried - and it's a common problem - when the person who wrote and performed the lyrics is the one also mixing them - in that you already know what the lyrics are. But, your listeners don't.

    These still need to come up. Sonar does have a volume envelope tool... so you should be able to get into the track and draw those sections up, accordingly.

    Another trick that might work for you is to mix the vocals to a point where you feel they are far too hot, and then, back them off by 1 - 2db. This doesn't always work, but sometimes it does.

    Or, let one of your friends or family - someone who hasn't heard the song before - take a listen and tell you whether they can discern lyrics without a lyric sheet.

    Is there another engineer - or even a friend with a home studio that you respect - anywhere near you that you could get this to? I'm not saying to let that person remix the entire track, but maybe if you took a wav file of a 2 mix to this person - without vocals - as well as a file with just the lead vocals, they could load both onto the timeline of their DAW and balance them out... just thinking out loud...

    If you are still running into a brick wall on this, you could send them to me and I'd be willing to have a go at it for you. Create a drop box folder and invite me to share the folder. PM me for contact details.

    On another note... how did you mic the drums - in particular, the HH? Did you use a direct mic on the hat? Did you also use overheads, or room mics, etc. The reason I'm asking is that if you did use overheads, many times, these alone will suffice in picking up the hat, so that you don't need a direct HH mic. Something to consider, anyway.

  11. kevinwhitect

    kevinwhitect Active Member

    I actually do have folks whose ears I trust, D ... they're on these boards, and I'm ever grateful for the comments. :)

    I'll work some more on it. I think I got the bgvs dialed in right, and I'll work on getting the lead more evened out via the volume envelopes. I'm an old hand at Sonar ... as I've been using it since Pro Audio 3.

    I'll set to work on the drums too ... which are midi via Toontrack's Superior 2. There is a facility in that app to be able to adjust the room mics on individual tracks. I'll play some more this morning and I'll post up the revisions. I trust I can get things right eventually.

    Marco -- thanks for the additional thoughts! I will tend to addressing this morning.
  12. kevinwhitect

    kevinwhitect Active Member

    Newly massaged mix now on the link above. Both drums and vocals have been addressed ... and I added a hint of reverb to the lead vocal for a little more "space". I hope I finally got it down pat.
  13. DogsoverLava

    DogsoverLava Active Member

    Hi Kevin - Just wanted to say that I've had your Soundcloud on play for most of the night - just letting it run - and I'm really appreciating the Songcraft. It rewards as you listen to each successive cut. It's a great example of how albums of songs (instead of single cuts) really inform the work of the artist - like each track leverages the other and the whole body of the cuts themselves take on meaning of liminal proportion. You are definitely an album oriented artist and I really appreciate the effort and the earnestness of the craft as you have show in your compositions. Very cool man. I got a cool Gram Parker, Joe Jackson Elvis Costello vibe from your stuff.
  14. kevinwhitect

    kevinwhitect Active Member

    Thanks so much for your very kind words, DOL. They lit up my morning. This track completes my eighth album ... and I've still not got a name for the collection. I'm leaning towards, "All the lessons we've forgotten" ... which is title off the album ... but I'm still uncertain about it.

    Thanks again, though. Made my day ... and inspired me to get back and finish this one this morning. I've got to back off some of the compression on it and I still don't think I've got the vocal seated well. Now it's a little too forward, I think. I've got to back it down the 1 db Donny mentioned above. :)

    Have a great day!
  15. DonnyThompson

    DonnyThompson Distinguished Member

    Before you back the vocal off, Kevin... why don't you post what you have here first? As people who haven't heard this track much, we'd be competent to judge the vocal level you currently have...

    Remember... you already know every lyric, line and word...just sayin' that what might seem too hot for you might be perfect for outside listeners.

    Just a thought.

  16. kevinwhitect

    kevinwhitect Active Member

    I wish I'd read that BEFORE I changed it. :)

    Actually, I did quite a bit. Others on other sites thought the vocal a bit too compressed, as well as the whole piece being a little too "aggressively" mixed for the genre. I sort of agreed and backed off the vocal channel and the main bus with the limiter(s). I also monkeyed with the doubler plug on the vocal, which another thought made the vocal "fuzzy" ... leading to a loss of clarity in the lyric. Then I tried to make sure the vocal was out front enough to hear everything clearly ... and well, please let me know where you think the current mix sits. I wanted everything a little less "sheen-y".

    Thanks again for all the help!
  17. pcrecord

    pcrecord Don't you want the best recording like I do ? Well-Known Member

    Well I still think there is too much room in the drum sound. But it's just my taste. (you can lower it in the mixer of addictive drums)
    Also, I was so disturb by the snare before to realise the part between 2:15 and 3:00 doesn't do anything for me. I'd rather like to hear a strait solo instrument than some of the keys/delays that are there. Again, just tastes.. ;)

    Other then that, the snare is very much in place now !!
    Congratulation on the great song !

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