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Thread: Care to throw on some headphones and critique my mix?

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    Ultimate Tone Slacker Swampy's Avatar
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    Default Care to throw on some headphones and critique my mix?

    Iíve heard this song sooooo many times the past couple days, Iím getting kind of burnt out on it. Iíve taken many breaks, listened to other stuff and what not, and I think Iím close but I could use some fresh ears on it. Canít tell you how many times Iíve rendered it, burnt a cd, took it out to the truck only to hear something that needed work. Still trying to get a better kick sound, thatís partly due to the recording of it not being so great.

    Overheads sound ok? Does the snare crack enough? What do you (or donít you) hear?





    https://soundcloud.com/keith-soderho...se-rough-mix-2

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    Mojo's Minions Kamanda~SD's Avatar
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    Default Re: Care to throw on some headphones and critique my mix?

    Ok I gave a quick listen on headphones (not my good ones by anymeans, so I'm sure I'm missing some details). Overall not bad for a first go.

    However:

    -Snare sounds like it's being compressed quite heavily with a super fast attack, you're squashing your attack (and therefore crack). Lower your attack time and let the transient through before getting squashed
    -Can't hear the kick at all to be honest. May want to look into simple trigger solution in order to mix in a sample if you find it practically unuseable. Or clone the kick track and EQ for attack/ click only.
    -Tell your drummer to eff off with the splash cymbal all the time
    -There is some fighting going on with the bass and guitars, Some EQ on either/or will help with that
    -Vocals need to be smoothed out more, Pull back the delay a bit and hit with some EQ to help it sit better (pretty hard high pass and boost in the upper range for some air)
    -Your overall balance is pretty good though, I think if you just fix the drums up a bit and carve some room to clean up the rest you'll have a pretty damn good track here
    -I'd also try perhaps doubling the vocals in the chorus? Or doing something to lift them a bit

    Everything just seems a little much in the mid / lows.

    How did you mic the drums? Might help with some tips.
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    Ultimate Tone Slacker Swampy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Care to throw on some headphones and critique my mix?

    Thanks for that! That’s what I needed.

    The snare does have a fast attack, I’ll work on that.

    I was considering throwing a sample under the kick. It is kind of lost.

    I highpassed both guitars to around 120Hz. I’ll see what’s going on between them and the Bass.

    Yeah....lol, the drummer loves his Chad Smith cymbal.

    Thanks again for giving it a listen.

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    Mojo's Minions devastone's Avatar
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    Default Re: Care to throw on some headphones and critique my mix?

    I pretty much agree with Kamanda's comments. The snare really needs to crack and the bass drum needs to thump, and agreed on the splash. I would say the vocals need more cut, I think Kamanda called it lift, but our solution would be the same, more high mids and less delay (at least lower the level of the delays).

    The guitars are kinda dark for me, but I think that gives it the Black Sabbath-ish feel that you seem to be going for (if you aren't, I'm totally missing something). The bass is more rumble than pop, but again, I think it goes with the style.

    It's a good track, and, I hate to say because I have been guilty of it in the past when I was recording with a couple of bands (on analog tape, ugh, I'm old), but, it sounds like it was mixed by a guitar player (and there is nothing wrong with that ).

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    Ultimate Tone Slacker LLL's Avatar
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    Default Re: Care to throw on some headphones and critique my mix?

    - The whole mix needs just a touch of "air" and clarity; sounds slightly muffled.

    Not sure if that's because when it was rendered it was rendered to lower quality .mp3 (or similar) or not...

    I would check 6KHz, 8KHz even 10KHz levels; try a small (1dB - 1.5dB) boost in that area.

    - That's a phat guitar tone... might work better if you hi-pass that to leave room (low freqs) for the bass guitar (can't really hear) and kick drum (can't hear at all). Maybe try hi pass at about 100Hz...

    Then you can bring up the levels on bass guitar and kick drum, and they won't fight the guitar for frequency space.

    - Panning... sounds like the snare is over to the left side and guitar is on right?

    Might want to try snare+kick and bass guitar in middle, then double that guitar track and pan wide L and R respectively.

    I listened on my bookshelf speakers.
    Last edited by LLL; 10-11-2018 at 09:29 AM.
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    Default Re: Care to throw on some headphones and critique my mix?

    Quote Originally Posted by Swampy View Post
    I’ve heard this song sooooo many times the past couple days, I’m getting kind of burnt out on it. I’ve taken many breaks, listened to other stuff and what not, and I think I’m close but I could use some fresh ears on it.
    Yeah that's the "fun" with mixing... EAR FATIGUE!

    Many times I'll come up with a mix that I think sounds great, then let it sit overnight, then come back to it the next day with fresh ears
    and find things to fix.
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    Ultimate Tone Slacker Swampy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Care to throw on some headphones and critique my mix?

    Took another crack at it. Itís hard in this track to get a good airy sound without it getting harshy. Is the kick coming out better?


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    Default Re: Care to throw on some headphones and critique my mix?

    Quote Originally Posted by LLL View Post

    Then you can bring up the levels on bass guitar and kick drum, and they won't fight the guitar for frequency space.

    - Panning... sounds like the snare is over to the left side and guitar is on right?

    Might want to try snare+kick and bass guitar in middle, then double that guitar track and pan wide L and R respectively.
    I did put the snare slightly to the left for a drummers perspective. Something I read about, and sounded like an interesting thing to do. The guitars are panned hard left and hard right with the bass and kick up the middle.

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    Ultimate Tone Slacker Gtrjunior's Avatar
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    Default Re: Care to throw on some headphones and critique my mix?

    I have a couple of suggestions that have worked for me in the past....Iím absolutely a beginner in this field do take that for what itís worth.

    I think if you eq the guitar so the highest treble and lowest bass freq are slightly lowered while slightly raising the innermost mid freq it will help to un-muddy the overall sound and reduce it from fighting the bass guitar so much.

    Also, I like to clone the bass track and hard pan L/R. I canít explain exactly why, but it makes the bass sound HUGE.

    I also agree with the comment on the comp attack needing to be reduced to let the initial snare crack come through. Also, is there any way to lower the volume and cut the highs on the crash cymbal? Itís really loud and cutting. The hi hats sound great though.

    You may want to try cloning the kick drum and do the L/R pan trick with that too if possible.
    Lastly, I feel like the delay on he volcanos too loud and imo should be more of a digital type delay with a longer delay time and 1 1/2-ish repeats. Right now it has an analog, slap back vibe and to me it doesnít fit the song.

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    Mojo's Minions dystrust's Avatar
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    Default Re: Care to throw on some headphones and critique my mix?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gtrjunior View Post
    I like to clone the bass track and hard pan L/R. I can’t explain exactly why, but it makes the bass sound HUGE.
    Provided that all you're doing is cloning and panning, the end result is that you make the kick louder via summing.
    Quote Originally Posted by crusty philtrum View Post
    And that's probably because most people with electric guitars seem more interested in their own performance rather than the effect on the listener ... in fact i don't think many people who own electric guitars even give a poop about the effect on a listener. Which is why many people play electric guitars but very very few of them are actually musicians.

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    Default Re: Care to throw on some headphones and critique my mix?

    Quote Originally Posted by dystrust View Post
    Provided that all you're doing is cloning and panning, the end result is that you make the kick louder via summing.
    Well, I feel like even if I turn the level of both tracks down it still seems so much bigger.
    Youíre probably right with your definition but it seem like there is more to it than just volume, somehow.

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    Ultimate Tone Slacker Swampy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Care to throw on some headphones and critique my mix?

    Aaaaand again. Damn it takes a while to manually drop a sample under every frickiní kick.


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    Super Toneologist Blille's Avatar
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    Default Re: Care to throw on some headphones and critique my mix?

    Quote Originally Posted by Swampy View Post
    Aaaaand again. Damn it takes a while to manually drop a sample under every frickiní kick.

    I had listened to the first one and agreed with Kamanda so I didnít comment.

    Awesome progress man.

    I would personally like a brighter snare and I would consider panning the solo in the center, but really solid pass.

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    OH THE GLAZE! Clint 55's Avatar
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    Default Re: Care to throw on some headphones and critique my mix?

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    Default Re: Care to throw on some headphones and critique my mix?

    The last one is pretty decent.

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    Default Re: Care to throw on some headphones and critique my mix?

    Much better.
    I still feel like the overheads are too loud. Those cymbals need to be pulled way back in the mix.

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    Ultimate Tone Slacker Swampy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Care to throw on some headphones and critique my mix?

    Revision #114

    Brought the snare up with some samples. Next will be a little tom work. Next time, get the damn drums right in the recording.


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    Mojo's Minions Kamanda~SD's Avatar
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    Default Re: Care to throw on some headphones and critique my mix?

    Much better! Manually doing the samples is a pain, there are some free ways to trigger off the waveform though (KTDrumTrigger I think).

    I would throw a de-esser on the vocals at this point, few harsh syllables coming through.

    And don't beat yourself up (pun intended) on the drums. They are the hardest to record properly. How many inputs do you have available to you?
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    Ultimate Tone Slacker Swampy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Care to throw on some headphones and critique my mix?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kamanda~SD View Post
    Much better! Manually doing the samples is a pain, there are some free ways to trigger off the waveform though (KTDrumTrigger I think).

    I would throw a de-esser on the vocals at this point, few harsh syllables coming through.

    And don't beat yourself up (pun intended) on the drums. They are the hardest to record properly. How many inputs do you have available to you?
    Interface? 8 XLR (can split 4 to 48v) and 8 more line level.

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    Mojo's Minions Kamanda~SD's Avatar
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    Default Re: Care to throw on some headphones and critique my mix?

    Ok awesome, and how did you mic it up this time?
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