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Want your Honest Opinion on a mix PLEASE !

Discussion in 'Recording' started by zap, Sep 27, 2001.

  1. zap

    zap Guest

    Jim Holland had a thread over in Craig Andertons forum at musicplayer.com where his song "Waxman" was featured. I felt I would like to try to remix it, mostly coz he boasted many tracks, and that I never had tried anything like that before...

    Jims original can be heard HERE and what I did to it can be heard HERE

    Note, though, that I did not use all of Jims tracks. Partially because of a transfer accident (He sent CD's with WAV's, they arrived partially scratched), but also coz I *like* to clear things up a bit. (I'm finally old and wise enough to understand that "kill your darlings" is sometimes a good thing) :D

    But some tracks indeed BEING missing, made me put in a little of my own into it... a little piano, a little strings, and a pad sound... not much really, just spice. I also added - through the wonders of technology :D - a touch of vocal harmonies at places.

    Now, this is the thing: WHAT DO YOU PEOPLE think about my mix, SERIOUSLY? And I mean from a professional standpoint... i.e. would someone pay me to perform a mix at this quality? Or do I just suck?

    Notably is that I have never before mixed anything with a lot of guitars, real bass and real drums, I have been a synth guy all my life. Sure I threw in the odd guitar here and there, but nothing like a shitload of tracks of guitar (Jim gave me 42 tracks I think but quite a few was not readable).

    So the question is, does this suck? Is it any good? Is it bad, average, good, great, outstanding, so-so, horrible, sucky, go-home-zap-you-are-an-idiot bad?

    Lemme know.

    /Z

    (p.s. there is a previous version I did same day I received the files here if you are curious about how it has developed since then... yeah it has taken some time but I've been busy, and a little thing with airplanes and tall buildings threw me off for a while....)
     
  2. warlock

    warlock Guest

    The only thing I can say it that it sounds better to my ears.

    Keijo
     
  3. Aaron-Carey

    Aaron-Carey Active Member

    DAMN! second one builds up so much more...
    good job on creating a mix that " moves" or " seems to be going somewhere" much more

    Im a little scared about how much super high high end is on your version, but that could just be the result of a " home " mastering job.

    I kinda miss some of the distorted guitars, but it seems there are TWO hats you did here:

    1 as an enginner : you seemed to add a lot more " air" and some MUCH better lows, MUCH better lows. I enjoy the drums and vocals a LOT more now, only worried about that high end I mentioned.

    2 as a producer: GREAT job on picking the instruments to mute and use...I think it would build up even more if the distorted guitar got meaner.
     
  4. zap

    zap Guest

    Hey thanks!

    Yeah I had to play "producer" a little due to the missing tracks thing. (Can you imagine that an embossed patteron on a piece of toilet tissue, used as a spacer between two CD's in one case caused SCRATCHES on the surface!?) Which is also the reason some of the guitar stuff indeed IS missing. It was originally my intention to ONLY "play engineer"...

    But yes, I did some changing... notably of a guitar thing in the beginning to let it "build" slowly. And of course I added that little piano and the string stab to make the chorus stand out a little from the rest.

    And air... yeah I love airy sound... I like my mixes to sound... well... "open".

    As for the super highs... maybe my ears are shot... or my monitors.... I do like a crisp sound though.. maybe this is too damned crisp... but I'm a sucker for thump and clarity, and a hater of 4k grate and 250hz mud :)

    /Z
     
  5. RNorman

    RNorman Active Member

    Well, here I was ready to give you an opinion only I couldn't get to your server. You didn't have an extra extension on your URL, so is this server in the USA?
     
  6. zap

    zap Guest

    Ah, Sir Roger :)

    Try this link instead then - should take you to the same place though....

    /Z
     
  7. zap

    zap Guest

    Would be fun if Mixerman himself had a few secs... :)

    (* ducking and running *)

    /Z
     
  8. zap

    zap Guest

    If you think getting 42 tracks together sounded bad, listen to this:

    Now I am mixing 20 singers, 2 guitarists, 2 drummers, 3 bassists.... together to ONE song.

    Not only this, all these are recorded by different people with different technology. Everything from high-end studio mics to built in laptop microphones.

    One bass line has been on a casette tape. One drumtrack has been on a portastudio.

    But screw me sideways I am gonna do it... and amazingly "so far so good". But I mixed myself into a headache last night :) )
     
  9. Not bad at all Zap. I like your mix better. I don't care for the vocal performance at all (kinda boring), but your arrangement distracted me from that more than the first mix did. I would like to hear more power from the kick. My only question is why did you choose this song? To be frank, the song is not on your level. You need to choose better material to work on. You will always be associated with the songs you have mixed. Pick good songs and good artists to work with and you will go far.

    I hope that this forum is a safe place to discuss these things without offending anyone. This is a reality of the business. I am not a mean guy, but choosing good songs is part of being a pro mixer. Take my comments for what they are worth.
     
  10. zap

    zap Guest

    It was just a matter of availability and largely coincidental. The guy had this mix he was inquiring about, mentioned it had 42 tracks. I thought the mix could be mixed better.. maybe... but I am no expert in mixing "real instruments" (give a ton of synths, thats different) so I simply offered my services gratis as a test-run to see if I was any good at it :)

    I wouldn't even define it as a "choice" per se.

    The kick was the main problem really, although I could have used a soundreplacer plugin and dropped in a sample, I instead just beefed it up with "mda subSynth". Maybe not punchy enough though, but definitely restored some bottom and then some :D

    /Z
     
  11. RNorman

    RNorman Active Member

    Originally posted by Master Zap:
    Ah, Sir Roger :)

    Try this link instead then - should take you to the same place though....

    /Z


    Geez, finally I got to download it correctly. Still haven't heard it, but I'm working on it.
     
  12. Mixerman

    Mixerman Active Member

    Originally posted by Master Zap:
    Would be fun if Mixerman himself had a few secs... :)

    (* ducking and running *)

    /Z


    You asked for it.

    Sonically I thought the first mix was a bit unexciting, and generally boomy. Your mix conversly was clear, but way too crispy for my tastes. (I can't go too deep into the sonics since the examples are MP3's and I don't have my computer set up for critical listening.)

    Production-wise I think your version misses the boat. It sounds like a re-mix to me, not an original production. Perhaps a casualty of the process the production went through by your adding tracks. Technically it is a re-mix, since you added tracks around an existing vocal.

    I think the production on the first version might be fine (it's hard to say for sure without having the tracks in front of me), and it's actually the mix that blew it. This is an excellent example of a mix not bringing a song and a production to its fullest potential. The first version says remix on the file name, is it one?

    I felt you overcompensated with your production ideas, and the song would have been served better by the original instrumentation. It was more bad-ass and fit the singer, the song, and even the style better.

    It's too bad that I can't do a mix on it and show you what I mean.

    Mixerman
     
  13. Mixerman

    Mixerman Active Member

    One last thing. I think that the delay you had was overused. An 1/8th note pattern delay is a bit square and predicatable when it hits the space at the end of every phrase. Used sparingly it could have been allot more effective.

    In this case the squareness is further emphasized by the 1/4 note driving bass pattern. If you had used a shorter time with more repeats that was off time, it would have made a more flowing vocal over a driving pattern. That can be very effective.

    I like to use the long delay on certain words or phrases, rather than at all times like that.

    Mixerman
     
  14. zap

    zap Guest

    Thanks for your opinions Mixerman.

    Note that I was never PLANNing on adding anything, but since 12 of the 42 tracks he sent me was damaged (due to a CD scratched in transit) I kinda "had to".

    And I like crisp. Maybe too much :)

    /Z
     
  15. Mixerman

    Mixerman Active Member

    Originally posted by Master Zap:
    Thanks for your opinions Mixerman.

    Note that I was never PLANNing on adding anything, but since 12 of the 42 tracks he sent me was damaged (due to a CD scratched in transit) I kinda "had to".

    And I like crisp. Maybe too much :)

    /Z



    Yeah, I understand why you started replacing tracks. It's just that it makes it sound like a remix. The singer wasn't singing to your arrangement, and I feel as if he might have sung it differently to your production. That's what makes re-mixes interesting. So as a remix, I love it, in picking the right prduction for the song, I go with the first.

    I think you have good arranging skills, and I think your production skills are good too.

    The irony is that your version stuck in my head, but your version had allot more mix impact since the mix worked with the production. I just felt that the other production worked better with the song and the singer. Unfortunately you'd never know it by the original mix.

    Mixerman
     
  16. Mark Coming

    Mark Coming Guest

    Originally posted by Master Zap:
    Jim Holland had a thread over in Craig Andertons forum at musicplayer.com where his song "Waxman" was featured. I felt I would like to try to remix it, mostly coz he boasted many tracks, and that I never had tried anything like that before...

    Jims original can be heard HERE and what I did to it can be heard HERE

    Note, though, that I did not use all of Jims tracks. Partially because of a transfer accident (He sent CD's with WAV's, they arrived partially scratched), but also coz I *like* to clear things up a bit. (I'm finally old and wise enough to understand that "kill your darlings" is sometimes a good thing) :D

    But some tracks indeed BEING missing, made me put in a little of my own into it... a little piano, a little strings, and a pad sound... not much really, just spice. I also added - through the wonders of technology :D - a touch of vocal harmonies at places.

    Now, this is the thing: WHAT DO YOU PEOPLE think about my mix, SERIOUSLY? And I mean from a professional standpoint... i.e. would someone pay me to perform a mix at this quality? Or do I just suck?

    Notably is that I have never before mixed anything with a lot of guitars, real bass and real drums, I have been a synth guy all my life. Sure I threw in the odd guitar here and there, but nothing like a shitload of tracks of guitar (Jim gave me 42 tracks I think but quite a few was not readable).

    So the question is, does this suck? Is it any good? Is it bad, average, good, great, outstanding, so-so, horrible, sucky, go-home-zap-you-are-an-idiot bad?

    Lemme know.

    /Z

    (p.s. there is a previous version I did same day I received the files here if you are curious about how it has developed since then... yeah it has taken some time but I've been busy, and a little thing with airplanes and tall buildings threw me off for a while....)


    Zap,

    Sorry this has taken me so long to listen to, but I really think the re-mix is about a 200% improvement over the original. In fact, I didn't even like the original from way back when this thread first started on CA's forum - but this remix really brings it out for me - makes the song better. Hat's off to you.

    If you have a chance I am looking for some mix feedback on a song at my IUMA site - it is called Song for Grace - let me know what you think if you get to it.

    http://artists2.iuma.com/IUMA/Bands/Mark_Coming_Project/

    Cheers,

    Mark
     
  17. zap

    zap Guest

    Mixerman: You are right in that it now - technically - is a remix, not a mix.

    Although I liked the stuff I add, I do miss stuff from the original which was on the unreadable tracks. I.e. it works for the first half of the song but in the end there are some guitar tracks missing which would have helped it.

    Afterall this was more a test of my "abilities" (if any) than anything.

    (Dead Link Removed)

    AmadMozart: Glad you like it! I do agree with mixermans "production critique" as per above since it was due to the circumstances. If I *really* would have been producer I would rearrange the song a little because I think that it (in both versions) kinda works best for the first half and then kinda goes into a semi-brigey-thng that still is "too same" and then becomes a chorus repetition with no additional energy at all.... as a producer I'd fixed that, in some way.

    I'm gonna go download your track now and see if I have something intelligent to say :)

    /Z
     
  18. Jeff Findley

    Jeff Findley Guest

    My first impression upon hearing the original was that I couldn't hear enough bass & drums. You obviously felt the same way, and it sounds a lot better to me. My only constructive criticism would be that it sounded as though you eq'd the mix in a manner that wound up sounding just a little too hissy. Nice work though...
     

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