"In The Islands" - Funk/Reggae/Electro

Discussion in 'Mixing & Song Critique' started by stevie_m, Sep 5, 2020.

  1. stevie_m

    stevie_m Active Member

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2014
    Hey guys - here's a dreamy tropical blend of genres for your ears. How does this strike you?

     

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  2. pcrecord

    pcrecord Quality recording seeker ! Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2013
    Location:
    Quebec, Canada
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    Nice song.
    Seems a bit over compressed and the vocals are burried a bit. (can't make up some words)
     
  3. stevie_m

    stevie_m Active Member

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2014
    Thanks Marco. I applied some maximization to the master via Ozone, so perhaps that is where the extra compression is coming from (I do like the loudness it provides however!).

    I increased 2-3 dB in the 5Khz vocal range for more clarity - does it sound a little more clear now? Does the overall balance sound good?

     

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  4. Davedog

    Davedog Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2001
    Location:
    Pacific NW
    I like your instrumental choices in the arrangement. Everything seems well played and well thought out and I like the voice on this. It seems to fit the production. (Most times a very easily overlooked thing!)

    My only thing with it and this probably relates directly to the clarity, is there are a number of instruments that are sitting in the same frequencies. When you start doubling and tripling the same note no matter what the instrument is, it creates an intermodulation which is impossible to sort out with compression. A compressor will 'compress' the loudest segment of a passage which in turn now makes the similarly pitched instruments relatively the same volume and thereby washes out the individual parts. They start to sum each other and this wipes out their intricacies in their layers in the mix.

    Ozone is a very powerful plug and adding maximization in it tends to make it rather overbearing in my opinion. It's really easy to fall in love with the perceived 'hugeness' that ozone across the 2 buss can give. I assume this is the "loudness" you were referring to. And you would be right, as it creates that kind of scooped boosts that a 'loudness' button on old stereo receivers used to have as an added EQ slope. Those loudness buttons were there for low-level late -night enhancement not really for accurate playback.

    I also think you could find a better kik drum for this track. That or add some distortion to the one you have. I think the level is good but sounds kinda cardboardy and not modern or "dreamy" as you described the feel originally. Maybe run it through a tape emulation of some sort......since I don't know what plugs you have......

    Here's something do regularly. Not to say whats best for you......Anyway, I will take a mix to the point you seem to be at and then make a save as copy and then take the new copy and completely strip it of every plug-in and mix it with nothing but a basic single comp on tracks that need it, use a minimal EQ where needed, and then look at volume, pan, and use the arrangement of the instruments to create size and depth-of-field. If nothing elese it's a fun way to get perspective on a mix before it starts you down the rabbit hole of adding things instead of subtracting.

    Everything gets clearer and larger with subtraction.
     
  5. stevie_m

    stevie_m Active Member

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2014
    "Subtractive mixing" - very interesting. I'll have to experiment with that! Thank you. Any tips on how loud to master the input vs output gain on the Master bus (i.e. Ozone)?
     
  6. pcrecord

    pcrecord Quality recording seeker ! Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2013
    Location:
    Quebec, Canada
    Home Page:
    I usually keep my mix having peeks at maximum -10 to -6 db. For the output of Ozone, select the integrated metering, it will give you LUFS readings..
    For a CD -12 to -9 LUFS and for Streaming around -14 LUFS. (those are starting points, you can compared to commercial songs having the same genre)
     

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