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Recording backwards solo

Discussion in 'Recording' started by CombatWombat, Dec 5, 2005.

  1. CombatWombat

    CombatWombat Active Member

    Am I missing something that would make this easier in the digital realm?

    I just spent about 3 hours manually reversing each note because I can't seem to find any easier way to do it. Any advice?
  2. sander_8

    sander_8 Guest

    Recording with a reverse-effect already applied to the guitar?
  3. CoyoteTrax

    CoyoteTrax Well-Known Member

    The Experience pedal will save you hours


    Listen to the sound byte
  4. Calgary

    Calgary Active Member

    Line 6 PODs have a "swell" effect also, I believe it's preset 9D on the 2.0. :cool:

    The original reverse guitar solos in the 60's were actually flipped section-by-section, not note-by-note AFAIK. There's also a VST effect available for this which you can play through in real time if you have a low latency setup. :cool:
  5. Jimi_London

    Jimi_London Guest

    What software are you using? I use Digital Performer and all I have to do is select the track I want to reverse and then apply the "reverse" plug-in to the track. It's not a real time plug-in...it actually reverses and redraws the waveform. Couldn't be easier.
  6. CombatWombat

    CombatWombat Active Member

    CyoteTrax, Thanks! Sounds like the experience pedal would work pretty well. They're even in Portland!

    Calgary, thanks for the heads up. I'll look into that vst as well. Any idea where to get it? Anything would be better than what I just went through. That was ridiculously tedious.

    Jimi, I'm using Adobe Audition 1.5. Audition has a "reverse' plug-in as well. Are you saying that the plug in you have will allow you to select an entire waveform, and then it will reverse each individual note?
  7. David French

    David French Well-Known Member

    Learn it backwards?
  8. Jimi_London

    Jimi_London Guest

    Yes. You can reverse a whole track if you want to. If you recorded your solo you can then select that particular track and reverse the whole thing. You could also edit the track down to smaller sections and reverse only the parts you need to. Like I said, it's not a "real time" plug-in. It uses file based processing, meaning it processes the wave form and then creates a new one with the processed sound. In this case, after applying the plug-in it creates a new file with a reversed waveform. I have not used Audition so I am not sure if your plug-in is indeed the same as what I am using, but I would think Audition should be capable of doing the same thing. Hope this helps.
  9. Calgary

    Calgary Active Member

    For the early stuff they didn't learn anything, people like hendrix and Lennon were just blowing riffs and then reversing the entire section, mixing that in with other stuff, etc... It was an effect, no one ever said anything articulate with it. As long as you play in key and on time, when you reverse it, it's still going to be in key and on time provided that you reverse a section exactly from bar line to line.

    I've never heard of anyone learning the solo backwards but I imagine people like Vai have tried it. Vai also uses a real time backwards guitar effect, I believe from an Eventide Harmonizer.

    I can't recall which VST it was, could it have been Guitar Rig? Or maybe Anatares filter? No wait, I think it was one of the Waves ones, MondoMod or something like that, the one which does doppler effects. Bah, I'm not sure. I've done it though and it worked quite well, I just can't recall which it was. :-?
  10. CombatWombat

    CombatWombat Active Member

    David, Ha! My brain has a hard enough time moving forwards. :p Besides, that's not what I'm trying to do.

    Jimi, I don't think we're on the same page here. I'm talking about taking a solo and reversing each individual note. I want all the same notes in the same place, just backwards. Audition can do this, but you have to reverse each note manually, not reverse the entire solo. I am looking for a way to automate this. It doesn't sound like your plug in does that.
  11. David French

    David French Well-Known Member

    I used to do little things with backwards guitar. I would play the notes I wanted forwards, reverse that, then learn it from ear as a new solo. If you can read music, you could write it out in sheet in a notation program and then throw it in retrograde.
  12. CombatWombat

    CombatWombat Active Member

    David, I didn't think hard enough about that ( I told you my brain has a hard time). That makes perfect sense. I may actually try that. Though I can see myself getting pretty frustrated pretty fast. :)
  13. Davedog

    Davedog Distinguished Member

    So it seems you're looking for the 'attack' of each note to be reversed???...And you want the notes themselves to not be in a different place....right?

    Experience pedal.Mooger Flooger(i think thats what this unit does)theres a couple of others....seems like a reversed envelope follower would do this...

    Okay time for my story.

    It seems that from what I've read from Eddie Kramer and others involved, that the backwards tracks on Mr.Jimi's music were peculiar in a way that no one else has been able to achieve.

    You understand that they recorded these 'leads' on a mono machine, reversed the tape on the reel, and played it back against the existing multi-tracks' track, syncing it manually....ala finger-on-the-reel.

    It seems that Mr.Jimi knew how it was going to sound before he heard it. He'd play it frontwards(of course) and would know whether it was going to fit if played backwards without hearing it.

    example: Check the guitar on "Are You Experienced".....

  14. Calgary

    Calgary Active Member

    It's less difficult than it sounds. Nonetheless that diminshes nothing and that was sure some great music they made together. Jimi had incredible instinct.
  15. GregP

    GregP Guest

    To fake it, you can try out GVST's freeware plug-in, GRevDly, found at their page:


    It will NOT automatically do each note. Plus, it's a delay effect, so there's a repeat (user-adjustable, of course). So, it's not exactly what you're looking for. However, what it IS is a cool plug-in for neato sounds in a similar category. Go 100% wet and have some fun. ;)

  16. CombatWombat

    CombatWombat Active Member

    Thanks Greg! I'll check that out. I'm ok with spending hours on end reversing each note if that's what it takes to get exactly what I'm looking for, but it will be fun to test out some different stuff.
  17. moonbaby

    moonbaby Mmmmmm Well-Known Member

    The good ol' Eventide Omnipressor was great for that reverse effect. It would crush anything in its path, PAST "infinity" to perform "reverse playing" effects. They now offer that box in an easy-to-use plug-in! Just in time for the holidays :lol:
  18. Reggie

    Reggie Well-Known Member

    The easiest way I have found to do this by ear is to mix down your tracks to a stereo file and back into your project, make sure the track is lined up with the left/right locators where you exported the mix from, reverse the stereo mix, and then play a solo over the odd backwards music. When you reverse the solo track and mute the backwards stereo mix, it should line up perfectly and sound in key & rhythm. This may not help your particular situation, but I think it sounds better than stompboxes and stuff that tries to fake the sound.

    I would almost bet this is how Jimi did it (only with tape, of course; and just playing the reel backwards when he recorded), but that is just a guess.
  19. Davedog

    Davedog Distinguished Member

    Good guess Reggie, but no. My research says he simply played a part frontwards with the tracks also going frontwards, that he knew would sound correct, in tune and in time BACKWARDS...The story goes, he was NEVER wrong. And they used a separate machine ...mono...for these tracks...sync'd manually. Remember what era we're talking about. This is still four tracks and reductions to add tracks.
  20. Eriksmusicproduction

    Eriksmusicproduction Active Member

    I once saw a guy sing the Beverly Hillbilly's theme song backwards in its intirety on America's funniest videos, it was really wierd, they played the video backwards of him singing and it sounded "forwards" and made sense.

    Just goes to show anything is possible if you got tooooo much time on your hands.

    Serious now, you could also play back the tracks backwards and solo to that as well, then when the whole thing is played forwards the solo will sound backwards but will have been played in perfect relation to the origional track, this would even work through key changes and could have an interesting effect of the solo key change preceding the other arrangement.

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