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audio The Minstrel and Marie - first time mix

Discussion in 'Fix This MIX!' started by Makzimia, Mar 11, 2015.

  1. Makzimia

    Makzimia Active Member

    Good evening all,

    This is the first mix of The Minstrel and Marie. First full recording in the new studio. The 12 string acoustic was recorded with a pair of mics into the Focusrite octopre mk2 dynamic, vocals into Presonus RC-500. All comments welcome including, give up, you're wasting your time, sell all your gear now :D.



    Removed sound due to newer versions.
    Smashh likes this.
  2. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    wonderful song.

    I hope this helps Tony, I don't mean to be so negative all the time but I know a few small changes will make big improvements.

    What is bothering me most is how disconnected your reverbs are with vocals. If I was in control, I would find a common reverb that the music and vocals shared, you can still add more and less per instrument but the point being, that the soundscape "sound" like it was part of the performance. Right now, the keyboard actually sounds right, and the vocals completely unglued. If everything shared a common room, it would gel better.

    I'm guessing you are using a keyboard patch (flute/recorder) with the keyboards internal reverb? I try really hard to avoid using reverbs that aren't part of my mix for this very reason.

    Hope that helps.
  3. Makzimia

    Makzimia Active Member

    Thanks Chris, what's actually happening is, I am fairly sure I'm not getting the DBX - Eventide chain still ... Thank you for the comments. Back to total mix to make it go into a separate track I think.

    I presumed sending 1-2 input to 31-32 software then hearing it at 31-32 out was right *sigh*. Glad you like the song.

  4. DonnyThompson

    DonnyThompson Distinguished Member

    I like the song, Tony.

    Performance wise:
    Timing is pretty ragged throughout the song ... you're not hearing that ? I think it's your downbeat that is drifting... which is okay if it drifts a little, the thing is, everything else has to drift with it. ;)
    6/8 can be tough sometimes... I'd like to hear everything at least hitting the "down" at the same time. Right now it's not tight, and it's distracting. I know that using a click on something like this isn't what most would prefer to do, because you don't want it to be robotic-ally "stiff" ...but in this situation, it might help to at least have a count (triplet-time) on the 1 and the 4 ( the "down" and the "up").

    I agree with Chris, the space seems disconnected. Are you using different verbs on this for different instruments?

    As Chris suggested, you may want to try using one reverb on the whole mix, and then adjusting the sends to the that verb per track, appropriate to space, feel and dimension that sounds best.

    I really do like the song, though. ;)
  5. pcrecord

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

    I think that music style suits you very well. Again, nice song !
    I too believe that the reverbs need work, the guitar and the vocal need to be in that feeric place.
    Yes the timming could be better but without being steril
    It might be me, because I'm not at the studio, but the stereo spectrum is a bit off. There is much more going on to my right. May be it's just the flute who could be in the center.
    I thought the percussions were a bit dark but it's more a taste thing.

    All in all, I'd say, Give it love, that's the best song I heard from you yet ! ;)
  6. Makzimia

    Makzimia Active Member

    @Chris @DonnyThompson @pcrecord

    Thanks guys :) this song is one of 7 I perform live all the time. I hear you Donny about timing, I did feel some was definitely dragging or preempting, but, I had hoped I had mostly gotten away with it for a first mix LOL. I am sorely out of practice at playing my drumming on the keys. Re reverb, I am going to remove what is a headache for me, for now. I am not gelling at all with running external gear during my sessions still. None of you really know me, and the recording process in general, of my own stuff ruins my creative vibe on most days.

    Marco, yes I think the balance is a little over right too, wife liked it, and trust me she's a good critic, although she didn't pick the timing issues, maybe we are all too fussy compared to a lot of listeners?. LOL.. anyway, it's worth fixing as you say :).

    Thank you all for your time and suffering of my floundering around as I try to reach a new level. I will attempt to right my wrongs today in a more basic approach.


  7. pcrecord

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

    If you are recording percs with a midi controler, it's very easy to quantise the track. If you are like me and like to keep some life in your tracks, most quantising software can place notes but with a pourcentage of accuracy. I usually use between 95 to 98% ;)
  8. DonnyThompson

    DonnyThompson Distinguished Member

    You're nowhere near alone on this, Tony. I have many friends who are great musicians - and who have become pretty adept at the recording process, too - but they don't really like that side of it. Lots of artists don't.
    I have a good friend - we've known each other almost 40 years, toured together, chased skirts together, composed together.... he's a great singer, a charismatic front man, a true entertainer, a wonderful writer, too... but, he loathes the recording process. Absolutely despises it. It's not as if he doesn't know anything about it, he's done more sessions than either one of us could probably count, he just hates that whole side of the business. He loves performing live.... He just gets very bored, very fast, in the studio. He wants to be ale to walk in, lay down his vocal track, and leave. He doesn't hang around for the mixing or the production.

    There are many artists who focused strictly on the performance - cats like Sinatra, Elvis Presley, and many others who have been vocal about their dislike for the whole process of recording in general.

    Then there are musicians like Buddy Holly, Todd Rundgren, Alan Parsons, Brian Wilson, Prince, etc., who are great artists as well, but who also love the recording process as an art form in and of itself... those people, who over the years, have used the studio and its technology as another " instrument".

    I feel both ways at various times. It depends on my mood, and what I'm working on at the time, too. There are times where I just want to get the song down, to concentrate on the arrangement, the playing, the singing...throw it together, jack the faders up and call it finished.... but, there are also those times when I love to be an engineer - to open up my trick bag, and pull out all those cool little things that I've learned over the years; setting up mics, adjusting positions, switching them out, and in mixing, to have a hand in making the tracks sit where I want them, to sculpt tone, create space and depth, to work squeaky clean - or, add grit - or any combination of all of the above. LOL

    If you don't like the recording process, there are options available. Perhaps you might look for a musician in your area who does like that side of it, and who also digs what you are doing musically... a collaborator of sorts - a situation that allows you to focus on the music, and let the other guy handle more of the technical side.

    It's also helpful to have someone around who can also chime in when needed, too... to catch the little things that maybe you haven't - like a ragged 6/8 time, for example. ;)

    Do what you love doing the most - swallow just enough of the technical part - just enough - to get your tracks recorded as cleanly as possible, and then, send them out to a mix engineer like Chris, or Me, or Boswell, or Dave, or Hawk, or Marco, or Kyle...I'm not intentionally leaving anyone out of this list ... after all, we're here chatting on a site called "recording.org", so it's not exactly as if pro engineers are in short supply around here. LOL....

    Lord knows, there are plenty of us here who wouldn't mind the work. ;)


    pcrecord likes this.
  9. Makzimia

    Makzimia Active Member

    @pcrecord @DonnyThompson

    Thanks for support and solidarity :). I went back to basics today, zero outboard all ITB. Marco, I don't use midi vsti stuff on this song, that is all live playing, guitar and keyboard. I put the metronome on (after I used my bpm reader to find the tempo) the guitar was at 109.9 ( I went for 110). Once again thanks for any feedback, I THINK I have it a lot more along this way...

    Donny, if I could have found someone to play with I would have by now... the USA has been more or less a wash for 12 years of living here. Anyone I have come across has either been a flake or doesn't have the time to work on anything. I miss the UK and Australia at times like this. And yes, I know there are plenty here, but, I blew my budget for music for some time to come :(.

    Anyway, here is recording and mix number two, all was new except the guitar.


  10. pcrecord

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

    Your mix is quite nice, better balance, good dynamics. Although everything could be brighter, but this could be done at mastering.
    Now, it needs a place to live. If you have a room simulator or nice reverb (ITB or OTB) what you want to do is to apply it to everything but with a low pass around 4 to 6k and an Hi pass around 150-300hz.
    You should be able to imagine listening to a band in a particular place of your choice. (concert hall, church, etc...) ;)
  11. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    specifically regarding just this ,
    This is what collaboration is all about.
    We are able to work on peoples tracks anywhere in the world. There are no limits today. As an example, I play a mean guitar and sing like Colin from Men at Work with a touch of Tom Petty
    I have a guitar style like Santana, SRV or George Benson.
    I have your session, I could easily import it, play a guitar track and send it back.
    I could also very easily just import a master track, play along with it and give you just my guitar track. As long as we zero the session, anyone can collaborate with you.
  12. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    This is 100% better, Tony! Put a bit more reverb on your voice. So it sounds like you are outside! Just a bit...
  13. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    Actually, put it on the entire mix. it will gel it immediately!
  14. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    For fun, please, please please... send me the audioclip you just posted of this. I cannot resist doing something for you "for fun!":love:. I love this now.
  15. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    In the mean time, if the kick was less pronounced, I think it would be better. And, you have changed the levels from 200 where its too obvious. It sounds like you turned the vox up. Turn the music down and possibly a touch less reverb just for the intimate effect you are going for there, then as it gets back to the song, back to the mains spacial effect of the song again.
  16. Makzimia

    Makzimia Active Member

    @pcrecord @audiokid

    Hi Guys, I actually put everything into an AUX with reverb, and an AUX with delay separate levels for each part but very close to each other. I am guessing, you still are saying I need to put a reverb on the 2-bus too still. I usually do, and did, then removed it LOL. I'll put the song in drop box for you, thanks Chris :). I understand about the collaboration part BTW, I just don't like to bother busy people, bad enough as it is :-/.
  17. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    For this style of music, I would definitely have a reverb on the two bus. Bricasti's are great for this. I learned just how great they are only after owning a few and experimenting with them during mastering. I sold them once I realized where they shine and how to emulate them where it counts. (I'm also planning on buying the new model if and when it is released)
    Had I not gone through that evolution owning the Dangerous Master and those, I don't know if I would have trusted doing that. Its amazing how little you need to go a long ways.

    looking forward to the track. I have a feeling I'm not the only one finding this pretty refreshing now.
  18. pcrecord

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

    What ever Makzimia does, he needs to know that a reverb on the two bus meens that everything you hear comes from the output of the verb.
    On the other hand, I prefer using a AUX bus to still hear the direct sound be blend some reverb in it... (big difference here)
    Just my 2 cents ;)
  19. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    This is where you trust your DAW's two bass and the verb plug-in is good. 3% wet, the rest passes through. It should only add space and not smear the imaging. I'll try it for fun on Sequoia. Maybe do something else to shake it up.
  20. pcrecord

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

    I should have said that I don't thrust plugins to be transparent even at 0% wet. That's why I prefer using 2 signal path. ;)

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