Tagged: monthly mix challenge
- This topic has 70 replies, 16 voices, and was last updated 4 years ago by Matthew Sweet.
September 27, 2019 at 8:16 am #66331Erik DuijsParticipant
That's masterful stuff, especially the lead vocals! Great automation!
I especially love what you've done where the bass comes in, but wasn't "No Editing" part of the challenge? Or does this still fall under 'automation'? 😉
At the intro I found the extreme panning a bit disconcerting on headphones, but when it all comes together it really works.
Man, I've got to work on my automation skills 🙂
ErikSeptember 27, 2019 at 8:25 am #66332Erik DuijsParticipant
It sounds very thick and full and I also like how you featured the low guitars. Personally I'd put the lead vocals more to the front as they seem to get a bit lost in places.
To me it sounds quite muffled, but as I understand it this was a conscious decision given the limitations. But if your consideration was a trade-off between controlling sibilants and having brightness, perhaps you went a bit far in that regard?
Good work though!
ErikSeptember 27, 2019 at 8:56 am #66333TobiKeymaster
Thanks Erik! Appreciate the kind words!
I kinda felt that as it was all done with Fader rides - that it was cool and the gang. The tracks are playing, just at no volume 😉 And I couldn't just mix it. ..I have my reputation to think of 🙂
The automation just took a long time. It was done over several sessions. I was trained sound for film so Automation makes more sense to me than plugins. We were trained to automate not compress. The main thing is to get the lows and low mids behaving themselves. The 'kick' on the percussion took a long time as I had to go through the entire track one hit at a time. I was also quite aggressive with the hi/low passing on the guitars - so they'd fit into the mix.
Tobi.September 27, 2019 at 9:20 am #66334Erik DuijsParticipant
Ah ok, so it's still fair and square automation then 🙂
This could be a lesson to how important it is to know all the tracks intimately and how they can work musically!September 27, 2019 at 2:25 pm #66348TobiKeymaster
End of the day - so tired ears.
Nice sense of depth on the mix. A lot happening down the center with the 'woahs' to the left - feels maybe a touch unbalance left to right.
Shimmer on the vocal sustain is nice. I'd be tempted to add a smoother curve on the low pass to just take the edge of that shimmer.
Guitars are coming in with a lot of low mid. Auto to reduce the dynamics on the lower guitar tracks and more aggressive high passing to lose some of those low mids.
You're making life difficult for yourself by keeping the mix quite narrow. A little bit more width would make it easier for you to handle frequency masking.
Vocal panning is cool after the bridge - nice touch!
Bass is brought in nice and tidy. A touch more definition would be nice - but tricky with the limitations of the mix challenge.
Very decent mix. I'd like a little more width and the guitars need to be tidied up a touch in the low mids - but the feel of the mix is very cool. Great stuff!
September 27, 2019 at 2:36 pm #66350TobiKeymaster
- This reply was modified 4 years ago by Tobi.
Percussion is a touch dull. Did you low pass all three tracks? The two 'kick' tracks needs heavily low passing, the 'top' of the percussion not so much.
There's actually a very nice laid back feel to the backing vocals - they are quite dull - but it sort of works. YOu need more top on the lead vocal, though.
Equally the guitars are quite dull. You might need to check your monitoring setup. Feels like you're not hearing the hi frequencies correctly in your room.
Here's a playlist of tracks I use as 'general' reference tracks for mastering. Have a listen to Solsbury Hill via your system and compare it to your mix. Listen to the top on the lead vocal, the shaker and the top of the acoustic guitars in Solsbury Hill. I wouldn't really mix/master the Christina Holmes track quite the same - I think some of the darker treatment suits the 'earthier' feel of the song - buuuut, it's a good enough starting place.
If they sound the same to you - you have a problem with your monitoring setup or you need to see a doctor about your ears (not joking - genuine advice) - because your mix is very dull right across the stereo image. There is no way you're going to get your mixing right until you figure out what's going on with your monitor setup.
September 27, 2019 at 4:17 pm #66357Mark HoldenParticipant
- This reply was modified 4 years ago by Tobi.
I will be listing to the list, my set up is not ideal and will need work hoping to look into this once I get finished work for the Christmas/New year break.
The low passing if definitely the issue with the vocal, trying to place it to catch the SSS but it is having an adverse effect on the overall VOX, kinda a trade off between reducing sibiliance or having a bright vocal. The levels do need to come up a touch.
The same issue for Gtrs I've been low passing quite heavily three groups of those as well. An attempt at separating them out.
MarkSeptember 27, 2019 at 5:21 pm #66359Mark HoldenParticipant
yip defiantly went a bit too far, guess i'd not gave the ears a rest and all I was hearing was the highs so took them right off, hopfully its not too much of my set up as Tobi suggests it may be worth investigating. Thanks for your thoughts.
I have now opened the mix up and boosted the main VOX if this is sounding better then it may have been fatigue was part of the issue.
MarkSeptember 27, 2019 at 5:36 pm #66360Alexey SolovievParticipant
Thanks so much Erik for your feedback really appreciate that!September 28, 2019 at 10:26 am #66380TobiKeymaster
With the Ess-i-ness, I went through the vocal line and drop the fader to zero take out the breaths and then drop the 'S's by 7 dB. The advantage of having no plugins, is there's no comp/limiting to bring the Ess-es back up again. That's all I did.
New version feels a lot better. Good idea to keep a reference track or two handy - in case you lose perspective. Particularly, if your setup is less than ideal.
Watch that low mid build up after the bridge. The bass and the guitars are 'merging' I automated a high pass on the guitars to 'thin' them out a little so I could pick the bass.
Tobi.September 28, 2019 at 12:31 pm #66387Mark HoldenParticipant
That was my approach to the esses but with editing, I just wasn't getting the results will have to play with the faders more. As for ref tracks I tend to leave one in there just need to get into the habit of going back to it 🙂
MarkSeptember 28, 2019 at 1:04 pm #66389Erik DuijsParticipant
Mark, this sort of thing happens to me a lot when I don't reference enough (although I tend to make my mixes too harsh and/or boomy myself). It's incredible how quickly one's ears can adjust to an imbalanced frequency response!
- This reply was modified 4 years ago by Erik Duijs.
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