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critique "Superstar" - I could really use some feedback on this one

Discussion in 'Mixing & Song Critique' started by DogsoverLava, Jan 15, 2020.

  1. DogsoverLava

    DogsoverLava Well-Known Member

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    Vancouver
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    Been working on this for a bit - It's an early 80's rock meets modern pop hybrid with some big drops and some strong vocal and instrumental hooks - really hoping to do something with this..... Any mix advice is greatly appreciated - as is any commentary on form or function --- my only uncertainty is the chorus' where I drop the drums and simplify the instrumentation -- Structurally I make the verses the exciting part so there's an inverse of form there....

    Many thanks - always very much appreciated.

     

    Attached Files:

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  2. bouldersound

    bouldersound Real guitars are for old people. Well-Known Member

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    Boulder, Colorado
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    I'm hearing a need for some vocal and kick eq. Both have some upper midrange tone that's a bit too much. The vocal is hot at 3.5kHz. That's a good range to boost if a vocal is sounding muddy, but it's too much in this case. The kick has more click than I think works for the song. I'd subdue that a fair bit at around 5.8kHz, and I'd give it a little boost around 50Hz. I would start with those to changes then see how things fell into place.

    If you're boosting where I'm cutting, just dial back the boost.

    Eq I'd apply to the vocal:
    vocal.png

    Eq I'd apply to the kick:
    Kick.png
     
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  3. DogsoverLava

    DogsoverLava Well-Known Member

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    Thank you very much - I'll apply those changes later tonight -- I think I knew the vocals were a bit too much there - it will be interesting to see the effect on the kick - I did boost that a bit to give it more of a dance floor push.
     
  4. kmetal

    kmetal Kyle P. Gushue Well-Known Member

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    Jul 21, 2009
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    I also felt the kick was too clicky for the genre. 1-3k boost gives more "pap, cluck, or knock" depending on where in the range you boost. Id consider a different kick sample.

    I would also consider shortening the intro by half, or leaving it full length but introducing the backup vocs in the 2nd half of the intro. Id modulate them with some flanger, phase, or chorus. Maybe even a reverse effect. Id also try and see if the effected version sits ok in the mix.

    The backups as is seem to conflict with the leads. Too much frequency masking i think is the issue. Perhaps less mid and upper mids, but more air on the bg vocals. This could get it out of the way if the leads. Adele's "rumor has it" does a great job using vocals as the "pad" element of the arrangement, and sonically keeping them in their own space, without interfering with the leads. Maybe worth checking that out.

    Im not sure what the effect is on the leads thats giving it a chorus or harmony effect, but id take that off and try something equivalent to waves doubler set to +6 cents on one side -6 on the other. Somewhere around there. This is a classic setting used in the 80s with the eventide harmonizer.

    If there's a saturation plug on the leads id remove or reduce it, or maybe run it in parallel. Possibly add a tape simulator too.

    Just a few suggestions, nothing major. I think the laid back feel is cool and sonics appropriate for the time.
     
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  5. DogsoverLava

    DogsoverLava Well-Known Member

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    some really helpful feedback!
     
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  6. DogsoverLava

    DogsoverLava Well-Known Member

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    Gonna rebuild this from the ground on up.
     
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  7. eternalsound

    eternalsound Black-top!! Active Member

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    Mar 6, 2015
    Location:
    Metro-Detroit, MI
    Nice! If it were the '80's it's certainly a radio "hit"! Cool tune!

    The first thing I notice is it seems the guitar is out of tune. I notice this most to the right at intro. Is that a tape plug wobbling a bit? Also, the snare is a bit too loud and/or needs to be set back a bit in the mix. Personally aside from some rather trivial things (to me anyway), I think you could master this and be done.
     
  8. kevinwhitect

    kevinwhitect Kev Active Member

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    In your big switch out w/ the "drop". Try to change up the vocal effect a bit - make it different to really delineate the segment. The kick doesn't have enough whumpf to it yet, and the snare could stand a bit more snap.

    Just a few quick thoughts in mix approaches.
     
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