Oh man! What did I do?

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Rockstar Vatican Assassin
Member Since: Mar 20, 2009

I'm currently recording a thrash band who really want their album to sound like a retro, early 90's thrash album. I came up with this first rendering and I liked it for a bit, and now hate it. It literally squeals at me even though "a bit too trebley" was a common 90's theme.

I'm thinking drums need to come down a bit and the guitars need more mids, less highs.... but I'm still missing that "air" inside it all. I have 4 guitar tracks in all... 2 panned at the (L) 20% and 35% and the other two (R) panned around 65% and 80% (respectively). Still sounds flat to me. FX or EQ suggestions?



snd.sc/xGxZeZ

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Administrator
Since: Apr 03, 2002


Mar 16, 2012 12:25 pm

I fixed the soundcloud...

I thought I made this feature pretty easy to use...I guess I was wrong, everyone is doing it wrong....grrrrrr, time to revisit it.

Rockstar Vatican Assassin
Member
Since: Mar 20, 2009


Mar 16, 2012 12:32 pm

I got the [ soundcloud ] tags. Am I putting the wrong info in-between those brackets?

Administrator
Since: Apr 03, 2002


Mar 16, 2012 12:35 pm

It's supposed to be the track ID, found in the wordpress widget code...

Rockstar Vatican Assassin
Member
Since: Mar 20, 2009


Mar 16, 2012 12:51 pm

I see... yeah, definitely didn't add that correctly then. Thanks for the fix!! From my own experience... I'm used to just pasting whatever is provided in the "embed" tags.

http://www.unitedmusicians.info
Contributor
Since: Nov 11, 2007


Mar 16, 2012 02:05 pm

I think a big reason it sounds tinny is because the drums are way loud compared to the guitars. I'm rearing a lot of tinny cymbals which is fine at the right level I think, and the guitars before the drums came in sounded pretty good I think. If you correct for that then we could make more accurate critiques, I'd bet.

If there's any EQ or compression I'd take it off. Is the kick drum pumping a compressor? Do you have a limiter on the 2 bus that's pumping? My recordings get excessively tinny when I compress them too much.

edit0r
Member
Since: Aug 17, 2004


Mar 16, 2012 02:38 pm

Listening on my laptop. Sounds ok as is. I agree with whats been said. If you have a hi hat mic, trying bringing that up and bring down the cymbals. Maybe splash a bit of verb on it to trash it up.

That snare can come back a touch in the mix to match the vocals. Maybe try some very fast compression or limiting to tame the 'pop'. The verb you've used sounds quite 'meaty'.

Maybe try a kick sample with a little less 'click' and a bit more 'slap', or ease off on the 4kish.

Also what ever is on your 2 bus is working very hard :-).

Maybe also try and rip a bit more mids from your OH's/Rooms. They sound very washy. Do your overheads a any limiting on them?

For the guitars, try drying up the verb a bit, or maybe a darker reverb. Maybe try a de-esser on them to tame that 'squeak'.

Distortion on vocals?

Uh, at least one more time . . .
Member
Since: Feb 07, 2007


Mar 17, 2012 12:20 am

Sounds pretty good to me--I can never really get past the Cookie-monster vocals, though.

Rockstar Vatican Assassin
Member
Since: Mar 20, 2009


Mar 17, 2012 08:55 am

Thanx all.... I'll definitely give all these ideas a whirl and post the outcomes. I want to create a sample for each change so I can monitor the changes. They'll probably serve as a great tutorial/source for anyone who is interested in hearing how little things can change the outcome greatly.

@ Tim... if you think that's cookie monster vox, you should hear my band (sample in music player).

Rockstar Vatican Assassin
Member
Since: Mar 20, 2009


Mar 17, 2012 04:12 pm

OK... I pretty much did all of the recommendations you guys mentioned. Drums gain down, Kick "click" down, a LPF on the overheads, more delay on the guitars, a tad more delay on the vocals. Let me know what you think of this sample:


edit0r
Member
Since: Aug 17, 2004


Mar 17, 2012 07:06 pm

Did you try a de-esser on the guitars? Curious if it worked or not :-). Otherwise I would automate the volumes on those guitar squeaks (string slide squeak). They're kind of annoying.

Sounds much better to me. I might bring the vocals down a hair, to make it fight with the snare a little bit more. Maybe add a dirty sub octave to the voice on 'and praaaaaaayyyyy' :0)

The rest of the problems sounds like their playing to be honest! There are timing issues with the faster palm mutes - double kick bits. Maybe bringing the down the guitars with automation in places in the verse to hide mistakes could make it sound tighter than it actually is :-). Of course, you can always go in and edit it to perfection...

Maybe you could try a mix with the bass guitar down a db or so, but boost the lows a bit on it. The waves puigtec eq is great for that, or any pultec emulation probably.

Member
Since: Jan 30, 2011


Mar 17, 2012 09:09 pm

I think you've got a sick sound going. It doesn't sound especially polished but that\'s sort of the appeal of the 90's punk/thrash recordings. Overall it has maybe a bit too much compression and the bass guitar could use a lot more just to even out the dynamics of it. The guitars and the drums sound pretty killer, although there is an annoying "pong" in the snare. But again, sort of a trademark of that old thrash sound. Good balance overall, although if it had to pick nits I'd say the vocals could come down a bit.

http://www.unitedmusicians.info
Contributor
Since: Nov 11, 2007


Mar 18, 2012 12:00 am

Indeed, 2 much vox, bro diddly.

Byte Mixer
Member
Since: Dec 04, 2007


Mar 18, 2012 04:59 am

I agree with Colonel and quick's statements. Vox sound too up front to me for this style of music. I don't think they need to be buried, but what Colonel said about fighting with the snare seems apropo to me.

IMO, the vox also sound very dry and up front to me. Maybe add either a very slight verb to 'em, or maybe a very slight chorus or delay, something to let it breathe a little more (if you do add some fx to the vox, I think in this case, less would be more) As is, the vox sound very tight to me. I think that will help them settle in a bit better, and you won't need to nudge the fader down quite as much to get 'em fighting with the snare. Also, a slight fx on the vox might fit well with the style of music. Something to play around with anyway.

Definitely an improvement over the first "draft" though. :) Sounds pretty well balanced on my cans anyway. If you wanna get -real- nitpicky, I guess you could switch all the tracks to mono and see if the mix falls apart. :D

Rockstar Vatican Assassin
Member
Since: Mar 20, 2009


Mar 18, 2012 12:08 pm

OK... here's another go at this with the vocals a little better EQ'd, some verb added, and overall gain reduced.

The Snare was EQ'd again as well (maybe addressed that pong). I didn't touch the bass guitar on this one though... only cause I don't know if it sounds better now that the vocals and snare were altered.


edit0r
Member
Since: Aug 17, 2004


Mar 18, 2012 08:52 pm

Sounds heaps better to me.

http://www.reverbnation.com/2ndg
Member
Since: Nov 27, 2007


Mar 19, 2012 12:31 am

whats do you have your oh's compressed at? ratio and release?
do you have 2 mics for the kick out and in? what is the compression setting on them?

sounds like something is being quite smashed and it sounds like one of those two is all.

and this hasnt been mastered yet? if not gotta get that stuff sorted first unless you just put something quick on it to get the loudness up for posting?

also i think one of the kick mics has too much bass freq or mud and needs to be backed off, cant tell tho if thats the compression or not.
either way if it is comp ripping the mud out a bit might stop it pumping if its the kick doing the pumpimg, again i cant tell if its the kick pumpimg or the o\h's. Im not sure of how you routed either so its hard but im hearing some big time squashing which is killing that quality and air you wanted.

Rockstar Vatican Assassin
Member
Since: Mar 20, 2009


Mar 19, 2012 07:42 am

Dematrix.... thanks for the input. Here's some more "graphical" data.
Quote:
whats do you have your oh's compressed at?

I don't. Just have a HPF and EQ on these peeking around -17dBs. I guess you're hearing the kick?
Quote:
do you have 2 mics for the kick out and in? what is the compression setting on them?
.
Only 1 mic on the kick; compression set to about -20 thresh, 6:n ratio, 15ms attack, 80ms release; 6db gain. Too low on the thresh?

As far as EQ on the kick:
+1.5 low shelf @ 97
-15 @ 407 w/ 1.0 Q
-15 @ 743 w/ .88 Q
+2.6 @ 1256 w/ 1.8 Q
+13 High Shelf @ 1942

This is not at the mastering stage, so the volumes will be a bit sporadic for now. I have a limiter on the master output simply for ripping these samples. It will be removed when I route it to my mastering software.


http://www.unitedmusicians.info
Contributor
Since: Nov 11, 2007


Mar 19, 2012 07:42 pm

WOOOO! That's the way (uh huh, uh huh) I like it!


Member
Since: Jan 30, 2011


Mar 19, 2012 08:43 pm

Sounds awesome! The snare sounds a lot better. Although I am hearing a bit of mud in either the guitars or the bass. I'm thinking the bass, maybe just dip a bit at 200-ish hz? Maybe a little lower, maybe a little higher. I'd just get a wide bell and sweep around 200 till I hear more clarity. Everything else sounds rad.

Rockstar Vatican Assassin
Member
Since: Mar 20, 2009


Mar 19, 2012 09:41 pm

Yeah, I'm still hearing a bit of the mud too in my car stereo. Since then, I've changed the compression on the kick so its a bit less aggressive and EQ'd the bass a bit more to help blend it in better. I'll tweak a bit more before posting another sample though so I don't wear down your guys ears!! LOL!! . Its getting there though... and your guys opinions at least let me know I'm on the right track!!

Thanks guys....

Rockstar Vatican Assassin
Member
Since: Mar 20, 2009


Mar 25, 2012 08:37 pm

OK... I believe this is coming along, finally. I scooped a pretty good chunk in the mids (overall) and added a little more delay to the vocals. Has a very Cro-Mags/Destruction feel to it now. Check out this 'lil sample I made of what I had to work with and where I'm going with it. Thoughts are always welcome!!


edit0r
Member
Since: Aug 17, 2004


Mar 26, 2012 01:16 pm

Went too far imo. Sounded better before!

Member
Since: Jan 30, 2011


Mar 26, 2012 01:16 pm

I was like "MAN that sounds like doo doo!" but then your mix faded in lol. Great work dude. Real solid mix.

edit0r
Member
Since: Aug 17, 2004


Mar 26, 2012 01:21 pm

Oooh, wait haha. I was listening to the start.

Rockstar Vatican Assassin
Member
Since: Mar 20, 2009


Mar 26, 2012 02:19 pm

ahahaha.... I guess I could have been more clear on what the sample was if you weren't really looking at the track name and just hit "play!"

Anyway, I think compared to "Sample5," I've made the snare a little more beefy (and better sounding) and brought the vocals in without sounding so dry. Obviously, the dropping of the mids took out some of the mud you heard too. The only thing I may need to tinker with is the bass guitar. The player isn't really that solid, so I don't want it very present. At the same time, I can't just drown it out either. Do you guys think I should raise it up a decibel or two or leave as-is knowing the consequences?

Byte Mixer
Member
Since: Dec 04, 2007


Mar 27, 2012 02:24 am

Hmmm, on the bass gtr, I think that's a bit of a judgement call haha. I have to answer saying "do what you think is best for the mix" :)

Raising it a dB or two probably couldn't hurt too much I suppose.

http://www.reverbnation.com/2ndg
Member
Since: Nov 27, 2007


Mar 27, 2012 08:16 am

hey man sorry for the late reply been away.
yeah last installment is heaps better, i would say by the ratio you had on that kick before it was way too squished.. 6:1 is a fair wack.
I would be compressing the o\hs imo with a slow release (250-280-320ish) and a mild ratio 2:1 or 2.8:1 and just roll the threshold knob till you like it, attack wise try 25 to 28 ish but really, again, so you like the sound or the metre just comes back some.
i think this will give the drums alot more cohesion and sustain and since its coming along nicely it should only make it better. You will obviously have to trim the angry shizz that comes thru because of this tho...but you get to the meat of the oh's this way.
Mind you i always have frickn trubs with the oh's im never happy with them.

I cant really get a good idea of the kick now as i cant get it to my studio but sounds quite clicky, which is good...but consider turning the kick up so you can hear it more then rip some click/top end off the top so it sinks back into the mix again, do this for any other frequencies on the kick that overwhelm the mix once turned up more.
basicly you wanna search that kickdrumf or a nice drum shell sound and this is how you would it here.
keep the vol of the kick up and trim the poo out till you can hear it shine thru...then youre gonna have yerself a kick *** kicker. Click is good, nuts is good....shell sound with these is better.

Obviously youre getting the mix to where you want it so you may not wann mess with it too much, but what i do when trying new stuff when i already like the mix is... save it again under a diffrent file name and try it on that version.
Hope this helps.

http://www.reverbnation.com/2ndg
Member
Since: Nov 27, 2007


Mar 27, 2012 08:19 am

oh and one frequency to look out for with metal that will limit your abililty to get it loud...is around 1k, scooping the mids can be dangerous for a metal mix, but if you find the offender then you can nail it better. 1k is a ***** up to 2k.

Rockstar Vatican Assassin
Member
Since: Mar 20, 2009


Mar 27, 2012 10:21 am

Dematrix,

I will definitely give all these a try; can't hurt like you said and if done on a snapshot, I can always go back.

I don't think I have a compressor on the O/Hs (at least, I can't remember right now); I believe just subtle EQ and a HPF on 'em. If there's additional "shizz," I'll work the plugins to get rid of it!!!

On the kick, I'm actually using a compressor trick on a bus to create the "click." What I may have to do is automate the gain on that bus where the double-bass comes in just so it cuts through.

Regarding loudness... I know exactly what you're talking about. My mix is currently topping out at about -9 dbs. If I crank it any louder (gain on the limiter), I start getting static/noise/popping. I'll work with those frequencies to perhaps fix this issue.

Thanks for the input!

http://www.reverbnation.com/2ndg
Member
Since: Nov 27, 2007


Mar 27, 2012 07:42 pm

too easy Hip, happy to help anytime if that is in fact what i end up doing and not hindering hahahaha.
By the way the i think you did a good job with that mix man youre on the right track imo.

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