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View Full Version : Requesting second opinion on a mix


Nizhny Tagil
02-24-2016, 03:20 AM
Hello, I'm trying to mix a collection of tracks of mine and since I've never managed to do a decent work before, this time I wanted to ask for other opinions.

This is one. It's in a "work in progress" status and it's pretty quiet too, because it hasn't obviously been "mastered" yet.

https://soundcloud.com/nizhny-tagil/sick-visions-work-in-progress/s-E19Bc

I basically wanted to sound like a blend of early Godflesh and early Big Black and to emulate an old analog drum machine in a digital environment.
I've used the Tiny Tears EP as reference tracks, if anyone is familiar with it.
Also, I have completely relied on Reaper stock plugins.

I hope to be able to complete this and eventually upload the whole thing.
Any help is really appreciated. Thank you in advance.

Nizhny Tagil
02-26-2016, 06:31 AM
Bumping, since nobody replied and in the meantime I've changed the mix a lot.

Here's a new sample:
https://soundcloud.com/nizhny-tagil/sick-visions-work-in-progress/s-1GqLO

I hope this time somebody would be kind enough to give me some hints.
Thanks!

OPI
02-26-2016, 07:41 AM
Far from my usual style so please take this with a grain of salt.

Even in metal, I think there should be a story told. Right of the bat you brought in almost all of the elements of your track. A slower build would have made me much more interested as to what was coming next. Set the atmosphere, then hit them with the wall of noise I hear so often in metal:) Your setup to the song was a distorted reverse thing which is fine but it didn't seem to prepare me for for what I might actually get. Experiment with droning pads and atmospheres and take us on a journey.

I can't really chime in on the mixing part of it. I wouldn't even know how to approach mixing metal. I just know I wanted to hear the the vocals a little more.

Btw the 2:25 mark was awesome. Maybe have some of that vibe in the intro. I understand all of this is recorded already but just a tip for next time.

Again not my style of music so please take this with a grain of salt.

Nizhny Tagil
02-26-2016, 08:14 AM
Far from my usual style so please take this with a grain of salt.

Even in metal, I think there should be a story told. Right of the bat you brought in almost all of the elements of your track. A slower build would have made me much more interested as to what was coming next. Set the atmosphere, then hit them with the wall of noise I hear so often in metal:) Your setup to the song was a distorted reverse thing which is fine but it didn't seem to prepare me for for what I might actually get. Experiment with droning pads and atmospheres and take us on a journey.

I can't really chime in on the mixing part of it. I wouldn't even know how to approach mixing metal. I just know I wanted to hear the the vocals a little more.

Btw the 2:25 mark was awesome. Maybe have some of that vibe in the intro. I understand all of this is recorded already but just a tip for next time.

Again not my style of music so please take this with a grain of salt.

Thanks for the suggestion, honestly I didn't put much effort into the intro, admittedly. I just wanted the song to start off with an "evil" cue and not just the guitars.

Part of my problem with mixing these songs is that it's not really metal, more like industrial, hardcore and noise.
I wanted to sound like I'm using an analog drum machine, which is really hard to fit in a more conventional metal mix (for me, at least). An experiment, I could say.

Therefore, any tips on the technical/sonic side are appreciated.

OPI
02-26-2016, 08:24 AM
Cool. Can I ask how you processed the vocal?

Nizhny Tagil
02-26-2016, 08:47 AM
Cool. Can I ask how you processed the vocal?

In this order, lots of limiting (the JS LOSER's limiter), lots of de-essing (again with the JS plugin), very high-passed slapback delay and ReaEQ with high-pass filter at 300hz, Q left at default.
Basically I just wanted to leave room for the kick.

Is there something wrong there, except that they're low? By the way, I didn't know what to do there because I like the vocals a little buried in the mix but not too much, obviously.

OPI
02-26-2016, 09:07 AM
In this order, lots of limiting (the JS LOSER's limiter), lots of de-essing (again with the JS plugin), very high-passed slapback delay and ReaEQ with high-pass filter at 300hz, Q left at default.
Basically I just wanted to leave room for the kick.

Is there something wrong there, except that they're low? By the way, I didn't know what to do there because I like the vocals a little buried in the mix but not too much, obviously.

Well if you like the vocal where it is, leave it. It's more of a clarity problem for me. I wanted to hear it pierce through a little more. You could try a tiny boost around 4-8k or scoop a tiny bit of that in the guitars. If it's just not fitting as you'd like you could also try duplicating the vocal and slamming the hell out of it with a couple compressors or maybe some saturation. Then bring up the fader on the duplicated track until it sounds good.

OPI
02-26-2016, 09:15 AM
Also I noticed you mention a hp filter on the vocal. Is there a strategy to this? I find myself almost always placing a hp filter around 90.

Oh and maybe back off the de-essing a bit and see if it pops through a bit. Unless of course there was some nasty esses.

Nizhny Tagil
02-26-2016, 09:32 AM
Also I noticed you mention a hp filter on the vocal. Is there a strategy to this? I find myself almost always placing a hp filter around 90.

Oh and maybe back off the de-essing a bit and see if it pops through a bit. Unless of course there was some nasty esses.

The high-pass filter is to leave room for the bass drum. Lower than that there's too much low end and the bass drum disappears when the vocals kick in. They sound less punchy in solo, but in the mix I barely noticed the difference.
That's the same reason why I've kept them low, otherwise they take up too much space.
Another minor reason is that I believe the singing isn't very good and I preferred to let the guitars lead :).

The de-essing is pretty much necessary, especially after all the limiting. I've tried to be careful not to overdo it, though.

I concur on trying to boost the "vocal" area a little.

OPI
02-26-2016, 09:46 AM
The high-pass filter is to leave room for the bass drum. Lower than that there's too much low end and the bass drum disappears when the vocals kick in. They sound less punchy in solo, but in the mix I barely noticed the difference.
That's the same reason why I've kept them low, otherwise they take up too much space.
Another minor reason is that I believe the singing isn't very good and I preferred to let the guitars lead :).

The de-essing is pretty much necessary, especially after all the limiting. I've tried to be careful not to overdo it, though.

I concur on trying to boost the "vocal" area a little.

Ah I see. You hi passed the delay. I thought you meant the vocal itself. Well thanks for clarifying

Nizhny Tagil
02-26-2016, 09:54 AM
Ah I see. You hi passed the delay. I thought you meant the vocal itself. Well thanks for clarifying

No, actually you were right.
I've high-passed both the delay (which is an insert) and the vocals afterwards. The delay is high-passed at ReaDelay's built-in filter at 450hz and then I have ReaEQ in the chain with a hp at 300hz.