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So you want a tight mix?

Discussion in 'F.O.H.' started by jval, Dec 10, 2009.

  1. Nitsuj

    Nitsuj Member

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    I spose from ur standpoint as a producer, you do what you gotta do to make the record sound good and your job is pretty much accomplished. The end consumer doesn't really care how you do it.

    But the music will always still speak for itself when played 'live'. They either gain your respect or crumble.
     
  2. [UEAK]Clowd

    [UEAK]Clowd Member

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    I gotta disagree with everyone saying that a tight performance and a tight mix are two separate things.

    The tones just SOUND better when the kick is hitting oh-so-precisely with the guitars and bass, when every chord is in perfect(well, near perfect) tune. There's so much extra power as opposed to when it's un-edited slop city.
     
  3. SocialNumb

    SocialNumb Damn Christians!

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    @jval
    I saw that coming. The yes and no answer. Well I hope you get payed really good dude. All the best to you.

    Wow, you must have the patience of a saint!
     
  4. Metaltastic

    Metaltastic Member

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    Hopefully Glenn doesn't mind me saying this, but I'm pretty certain he has a full-time job on top of his recording business, which I'd imagine is largely the reason why he can afford to have that mentality!
     
  5. Metaltastic

    Metaltastic Member

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    I acknowledge that, I was just a bit confused as to his point, but I get it now
     
  6. [UEAK]Clowd

    [UEAK]Clowd Member

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    word.
     
  7. colynomial

    colynomial Member

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    EDIT: This post is not actually directed at Metaltastic- quote removed.

    I think the point Jordan is making, and I agree entirely, is that one's perception of the mix is so dependent on the performance- especially in today's day and age. Our ears are so used to hearing things that have been so meticulously quantized and tuned to perfection, when you hear a recording without that investment, it sounds sub standard. If you can get an immaculately tight performance without the editing, then I imagine it will sound good anyways, but when you're working with real audio you will almost necessarily need to do some moving around.

    Anyone who's spent time interacting with seasoned, professional AEs that work with recording artists on major labels will tell you how critical editing is when producing a record that is going to stand up beside other contemporary acts. Consider the As I Lay Dying thread that was ressurrected recently. People seemed to be completely dumbfounded that they would spend 60 days tracking guitars. In a perfect world, sure your musician's come in and lay down 12 tracks worth of quad track rhythm guitar parts in 2 hours with no punches and no edits. But the truth is, even when it comes to the most highly sought after studio players, the performances are STILL edited to perfection for commercial pop stuff. Jordan can atest to this having been on a few Jonas brother sessions and I know a few veteran AEs myself who've worked on similar projects that would say the same thing. The only advantage in that case is the editing is fairly painless because the performances are already so close to perfect.

    One last thing, I think it's important to always consider someone's credentials when determining if they have any insight into a given subject. I personally consider myself a hobbyist when it comes to this stuff so while I think I have a decent understanding of how to make music, I haven't invested (nor do I intend to invest) the amount of time necessary to really have my opinion hold much weight. Someone like Jordan on the other hand makes a living doing this, and while he admits he's still learning too, he probably has some valuable experience into real-world engineering that might be helpful. One of the major differences between Jordan's work and the X number of other bedroom studio engineers on the board (my self included, that's not a diss) and I think, the purpose of this thread, is to try to give us a sense of the scope of a live recording and subsequent mix. Of course there are a lot of other regulars on the board who are qualified to do this but as he pointed out, a common misconception is that it's "crazy" or "unreasonable" to spend 8 hours tracking a pair of rhythm guitars. It's pretty standard practice if you want that immaculate, modern sound we're used to hearing in contemporary metal. A lot of people seem to wonder why they can't take their mixes to the next level when they've only invested an hour or two into getting the source material ready for mixing.

    To summarize, what I'm getting at, is how crucial pitch and time are to our overall perception of a mix. I don't think any professional AE could "mix" poor performances to sound good in the modern sense without doing some major surgery on the source material first.

    And sorry Metaltastic, that wasn't all directed at you, I just got going on a different tangent. You're obviously a very knowledgable individual on this forum. :)
     
  8. James-Doolan

    James-Doolan Member

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    pffft you should have seen my last project every single guitar note grided at tracking stage up to 5 different guitar lines all quad tracked = fml:mad:

    To be honest we got it to tight you can barley tell its quad tracked even when its stacked down the middle.

    Anyway point of the story is while its certainly very important to take the time to nail the tracking and editing stage's, its important to not overdo it imo a little bit of divergence between transients is important
     
  9. Ermz

    Ermz ¯\(°_o)/¯

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    Hence why it's an 'ideal' scenario, and not necessarily a realistic one. As I said, most bands in that circumstance would just take their business to someone else who would do the editing. I've certainly lost enough by suggesting bands do things 'correctly'.
     
  10. reg3n

    reg3n Señor Miembro

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    that's what i do :zombie: (maybe like... 10 or 12 takes... short takes)
     
  11. Everybody

    Everybody Hail Santa

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    which song is it on structures page?

    also thanks for posting this, it opened a whole new world for me... i was sitting here like, what gear can i get to make bands sound better. or maybe i need to just sit here for 8 hours, and get one good take of the whole song. I didnt know you could punch in (more than just on pauses in the actual song).

    I still am not fully aware of how to get it to sound good punching in so many times, and slowing down, then speeding up. but at least i know what can be achieved by learning to do so.

    and man, i could care less if a band isnt as good as their cd live, i just wont go see them (depending on HOW bad they are haha). the cd is how everything sounds perfectly in their heads with their best intentions when they finished writing. nothing wrong with them wanting to make a good representation of their song.....im listening to both songs (mainly *NEW* Encounter) and shit it sounds good to me. I dont hear any loss of feelling or whatever!

    congrats jval, and thanks for sharing
     
  12. LydonB

    LydonB Member

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    With the technology that is available to engineers, I would assume that artists expect everything to sound perfect, regardless of how well they played their part. I think there needs to be a bit of a compromise between performer and engineer. Yes, the performer needs to play their part right if that is their job. But at the same time, as engineers, it is our job to ensure we make the artist sound as good as possible.

    You should not have to polish a turd, but the client should not present a turd to be polished.
     
  13. Metaltastic

    Metaltastic Member

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    Haha, no problem dude (even before the edit :D), I get what you're saying, and thanks! :)
     
  14. Jaymz

    Jaymz Stymphalian Productions

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    Sadly I can't hear 8+ hours of editing there
     
  15. Zombietakeover

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  16. colynomial

    colynomial Member

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    One more thing.

    To me, recording an album is analgous to making a movie. In the same sense that you would never expect Transformers 2 to be "realistic", I would never expect an amazing sounding album to sound like a live off the floor recording with a pair of stereo room mics. A band can sell themselves as legitimate performers by playing live, but in my mind whether or not I want to buy their physical product- the album- is going to depend on the value of the production. There are a lot of film purists out there who love the old animatronics and puppeteering of decades past, but personally, I find convincing CG more entertaining- it's the "larger than life" presentation that takes you to place beyond what you could ever achieve with a live stage show. The same argument can be applied to music. When I put in a CD I want to hear all the little nunces of the composition and production that would be totally lost on you in a live setting just do to the nature of a crowded, acoustically aweful auditorium. Conversly, if I'm at a show, the raw energy generated by talented musicians through a decent performance is what I find entertaining. I would never expect a band to sound like their CD when I go see them play but if they were atrocious, I'd stop going to see them. The album always stands independent of the artist to me though- there are plenty of bands out there that I don't like but have made great albums and visa versa.
     
  17. Metaltastic

    Metaltastic Member

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    Are you serious? Listen to that first track (painful though it may be :lol: ), I can easily imagine an absurd amount of editing being involved in that if they were even slightly sub-par musicians! I must say jval, that does sound really goddamn good (not crazy about the kick, but man those guitars rule - was that really a Mesa 2x12?)
     
  18. Jaymz

    Jaymz Stymphalian Productions

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    Im totally serious, it sounds just as edited as usual bands. But not re-tuned after every 3 notes etc
     
  19. Metaltastic

    Metaltastic Member

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    Yeah, fair enough, I actually forgot about that part :D
     
  20. professorlamp

    professorlamp I are Joe

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    isn't guitar noise and small mistakes what make a recording a bit more lively and convincing rather than a robot playing it perfect? I know most guys here (by the looks of things are alot about metal) but if you listen to stuff by RHCP , the mars volta , even slayer they have small mistakes whether it be a bad note , their voice breaking midway or unwanted feedback. Eliminating all of these eliminates what i see as the feel for it, who doesn't like hear the other strings rattle as you're bending that b string to fuck ?
     

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