Editing with Elastic Audio
Tto be perfectly transparent about this elastic audio is the one I used the least and the reason I used it the least is because it's the newest but it's also the most destructive it actually stretches your audio out performs time stretching and you guys know about time stretching it actually does mess with the integrity of the way form it can kill your high end it's it's not that good can cause phase problems however you could do really cool things with it like especially on guitar say that a cord doesn't ring out long enough, but it sounds really good you need to ring out just a little bit longer there you go elastic audio it say that symbols don't ring out long enough or you need the tom ring to be a little bit longer so a little shorter whatever you can it's great for things like that for just adjusting single hits here and there you could also edit on entire song with it, which I'll show you how to do you just need to be prepared for the fact that it is going to degrade the quality...
of the audio and like john said, there are different forms of elastic audio, different ways in which it process the the audio and different ones are basically calibrated to different tasks of some our more for rhythm summer more for munna phonic instruments like spacer vocals from a polyphonic for like a guitar or a cent you just have to use your ears so first thing I'm going to do is enable elastic and I have to turn this over to tix right here and then this little guy right here is elastic so I'm going to set this to rhythmic now as you'll notice it's goingto analyze this stuff for a second that all the tracks went gray so the time which elastic analyzes the audio he's got to sit there and wait so while it's doing that see if you guys have any questions about beat detective or about elastic that you'd like to see me cover uh yeah, I think this is an interesting question that uh we talked about a little bit the other day eric shell tak asks ariel this is drum check drum production and editing but I'm curious avail uses the same editing principles on guitars if we're talking about d ies anyway since drum transients are also very identifiable herrick miss you actually know erik and real life yet? Um anyways yes and no I feel like over edited guitars sound like garbage but beat detective can be used very effectively on the eyes if your minimal about it and elastic audio is fantastic on the eyes but again you're degrading the quality of the audio so if you don't have to use it, don't use that things could get weird that's, the phase issue is very real and guitars with well, you know, it's like flax and logic to do that and just run into that problem, making it sound mono because of phase issues on the d ies. Yeah, the problem with guitars is that when you have multiple guitars, there's already phase problems inherent in in the way distortion works and the way guitar signals work there's already going to be phased problems, you're just exacerbating them by enabling something like elastic audio that's going to completely change how the phase works for it. So honestly, I would say, make the guitar player play it right, and if you need to punch in small sections and I think that's, the better way to go about it, it is not just go rift by riff, but break the riffs down into little bits and pieces that that would be better than, say, getting a whole performance and then using beat detective on the whole performance if that helps. Yeah, another kind of process questioning people last couple times. Sure. Um, with with, with drums. Do you, uh, edit everything before he record other stuff? Absolutely. So the tracks that people other people are playing along to our edited drum tracks terrorists, absolutely. Because you're talking about the foundation for everything if your drums are out of time everything else is going to be out of time if you don't have a solid foundation for a house it's going to collapse or be lopsided that's basically it'll happen to your recording us well, you need to make sure that thing zahra's rock solid as possible before tracking anything else or you are going to open up a can of worms I actually have had bands push me to track onto their unedited tracks and absolutely not no way that ludicrous I would never do it so I hope that answers that question pretty definitively yeah, absolutely not. So now basically now that these air analyzed you have two new menu options here and pro tools analysis and war basically when you switch to analysis it shows you where the elastic audio hit points are kind of like kind of like beat detective same idea this is the stuff it's going to move and then he's got the warf menu, which is where you actually make stuff move you can see can make hit points and we're stretching the audio so rule of thumb is when you added these hit points in you need to select the transit you want to move this guy and then you need to select the ones around it is well, so basically these air like guide posts or pillars they don't move this moves in relation to them, you see and when it gets to the red that means that you have gone too far off the edge of the earth. And anyways, I'll let you hear what this sounds like. You just move a couple things around so to do this more in the vein of beat detective or that type of editing I would move that to actually put the grid on and you can actually fly through this as you can see, just snapping stuff to the grid. Now this this is the manual version of elastic audio you can see it kind of has advantages of a proto jesus faras ease of use goes now that I move that to the wrong spot let's see what's up with that and you see if there's no hit point right here moves everything now zoomed out show you this if you see a stretching the audio so you can do all kinds of stuff with it and that's what happens when you don't have the the hit points on the other side is it'll take everything and move it yes sir, just bad red is bad in this case so we can do this stuff there's one more thing that you should bear in mind when working with elastic one mohr function which is quanta eyes I know some of you guys are going to squirm at but I should at least show you that it exists and this is how you would do it and select the area goto event event operations where we add kwan ties see it knows that you're quanta izing elastic audio events see audio clips and elastic all the events are two different things you want to make sure it says elastic audio and let's see those kwon ties it tio eighth notes and here strength is just like in beat detective, I'm going to just put it to a hundred percent strength I don't want it to swing you can't even randomize it a little I don't want to and there we go and it didn't sound that great one hundred percent strength go figure I don't really like one hundred percent strength and never do cool. So that's your basic demo of elastic audio aim but you guys have any questions on how that works and that's basically all there is to it, you just have to get comfortable with moving fast and make good musical choices. Basically, I think that the most important part of editing would be to develop your ear and let me go back to shawn's example and let's discuss it personally, I don't think that you guys should ever settle for bad tracks and then say I can edit it cool, I'll be all right with that because I'm sure all of you have entered into nightmare scenarios where you thought that it would be a piece of cake to edit and then it took forever because you settled and you ended up paying for the drummer's mistakes on the other end also as you've seen these editing functions do degrade your signal some so if you are cool with doing this you're also cool with degrading the quality of the album I think you should do this as little as possible and with us light of a touch is possible if you're going and just be detecting all of that it's going to come down and like we said before albums are accumulations of subtleties say we knock ten percent off the quality of the drums and then you do some elastic audio the guitars naka five percent off of that maybe elastic audio some vocals here and there some base to match with the drums that air elastic before you know it you knocked in a down to a c which is not acceptable in the real world so you had to be very, very choosy about your battles and how you're going to go about this and in my opinion the best way to go about it is to have the drummer do a great job and if the drummer is not going to do a great job, get a different drummer or don't record him in the first place and this goes back to why I would you superior drummer over a bad drummer is not going to end with just a bad drum performance is that going to get degraded further? So you have a bad drum performance which is then ah downward spiral of bad events that degrade the quality of the album one by one by one so don't do it let's listen to shawn's unedited cliff real quick and I want you guys to think about this think about what you would do to it if anything all right, so let's go around the room I want to hear what you guys were due to it do you think would need to happen to this to make it better editing one? Well, the performance is really good. I would if I were editing it, I would leave his flow almost completely intact in terms of timing. Maybe at the very end segment there's there's these pauses, it's like three beats pause with the guitar like the drum matches the rhythm of the guitar. I mean, maybe a little bit of adjustment to just make it line up perfectly there's something that we haven't touched on that should be noted, so those air scratch tracks that he tracked too scratch tracks are by their very definition, not perfect at all. So you have tio decide is that the guitar that's off or is the drums that are off so let's meet the guitars and check out the drums without the guitars and let's see it's the drums are the guitars, so these air just scratch tracks you know that you're going to re record the guitars anyways so mr guitars just don't listen to him so personally I think it would be a combination of the two and I think that a section like that should have been recorded with the metrodome timewise we just had to go, but what I would do is I would turn the guitar off and just tracked him to a click on that and then track guitars to what he did, but my son might take would be don't edit that section re recorded now if you can't re record it, my take would be ditched those scratch guitars and edit the drums at least a little bit so cool about you. Um, I agree I like the feel of the track in general um what I was noticing a couple times with song there was some crashes that maybe were a little harsh, which would be cool to take some other crash hits and replace those to eliminate some of that over the harsh crack at from this one thing that you guys should do and we got into this a little bit is make sample sessions for everything we did just the snare and the toms, but on day one you'll find out how to do that do that for the symbols as well it takes a while and that's why we didn't do it it takes about fifteen to twenty minutes to do the symbols because you have gotta let them ring out as long as possible. But there you go when you have that hits like that that happened in the middle like performance just grab it out of your sample session pasted in your good generally not always a generally or just take it from another part of the song, but the problem with doing that is that you're going tohave the bleed from the other mikes in there, so if you have one kind of beat over the crash pasted to the other is shot so it better to just grab a crash has got nothing else going on, so yeah, and to take your point a little bit further there's also kick hits that I would fix that sounded like maybe the kick drum head was touching the mike or something that sounded like something was vibrating or there's a little bit of distortion in a pre empt or something something well, I'm not sure if it was that it could have been because it was an a p I I this just so you know this distortion right here on this ssl analog is on so that means that this is a soft clip and this is actually specific to this week not this doesn't always work and in most cases that's not that's not the truth with plug and so you have to know whether or not you're plugging his intended to clip or not also you cannot trust the pro tools meters when it comes to this because you know when you see this red you still have about three to four more d b of headroom anyways you shouldn't be hitting it but just you know, just so you know, so the way that we would check that out is zoom in and I can already tell that that's probably clipped off a little bit actually that does not look flat it's kind of weird I would just replace that with a better hit like that honestly, I would probably replace the kick with of multi layered sample that we made together so it would be him and we'll talk about that in a minute it would be shawn's performance and it would retain his dynamics but it would be a perfect representation of his kick drum so cool thank you good ear what about you? I honestly wouldn't do anything to cool well teo be honest, when I made a record with sean I didn't touch anything in his drums the record I made with him was unedited completely and that makes it tough to track guitars too because of you used to tracking two unedited drummer and doing technical metal stuff is it will throw you for a loop toe play to the push and pull but the end result is fantastic yeah it's I feel like it's very much a stylistic thing with I don't know I guess I would call this a mild the jazzy bit of music that we're listening to here and ah I don't know associate that kind of music with push poll and imperfection for making a technical death metal album obviously things are a little bit different but I wouldn't do a thing teo honestly cool what about you um other than the things that were hard to discussed trying to think of something there was one kind of in the middle there was a phil that went to a few hits on the bass drum that I would have to re listen to because it seemed kind of was it during the section that he brought up or really in the middle the section with where it matches the guitar no it was before that okay let's let's find it real quick I think it was before that before that okay that's all we got besides the arrow that could have been the one way can you play just a little bit leading into that sure okay, yeah it's I just um it seems like the timing might might have been a little bit looser on those hits or something but listening to it again it's it's pretty good right? So that it brings up the question is it the scratch track that you heard before or is it the performance now and that's important to note? Because if you're listening to scratch tracks, you don't want to get the wrong idea about how the drummer did a couple folks online in god's timing in with what they thought jazz debt like the general consensus is yeah it's pretty close to perfect but jazz death says clean the tracks for mixing and tighten a couple of hits between snare bass drum and crash let's say we had reverb island it's really good some of the kicks or slightly early though um and trey xavier said the crashes they're phasing in a weird way well, the uh the crashes in my opinion could I honestly can't hear what you're hearing, so I have no idea what things sound like compressed through the feed, but I will say that listening to it in headphones last night what I noticed about the crash is is that they were rotating some and when I talked about tightening down crashes during tracking that's, why that's something that when I say it takes a few days to get your drum tone it's as much tuning and mic placement as it is little things like that that maybe your symbols or too loose and you only discover it two days in that one of them is swiveling and rotating around and causing a phase issue so good here and I don't know if I would fix the kick and snare drum stuff because listening to it without music it all sounds fine to me so I can tell you that the scratch track is actually all based on midi so it's all perfect it's sequence to a grid that's why it doesn't sound totally on with shawn's performance what I would do is re record the music in the field of his performance like we did on the other record but yes, I would definitely fix the symbols but like I said before I'd fix that in tracking I wouldn't I wouldn't do it in I wouldn't do it in post I think that the idea of fixing something like that imposed is very bad and this is also why you want to allow plenty of time to track drums you don't want to give yourself a day or two days or three days because you ears cannot handle all the little things in a very short amount of time that will come up you need enough time tio actually get a little distance from the drum tone, reset your ears and listen to that now imagine being in this room and hearing sean blasting yur face basically all day long your ears are going to shot you're not going to be able to hear you're not going to have to hear that stuff but say we had three days four days, five days to dial him in and record the song even in less and perfect environment I'm sure we would nail it just based on the fact that we would be able to come back in and say okay yeah symbols are facing a little weird tighten them down or move the mikes either way try and both to see what happens so any other questions from that just reverb island was like I never would have thought of this symbol spin that's wild so it's a great point thank you ah problem yeah symbol spin is huge is basically a metal plate that's vibrating all throughout and sending sending sound off of it to a microphone and basically the position of the symbol is constantly changing therefore the phase is constantly changing so you don't want it to be moving around too much a little bit it has to because otherwise you'll choke itself out but you want to have them somewhat tight and a lot of drummers don't like that because it messes with their feel but that's one area where where producer should win in my opinion and that also brings me to one thing that we did not discuss on day one regarding symbols and phase and bleed which is have your symbols as high as possible please at all times so anyways let's just talk about some key takeaways of that you've got three basic ways to do this beat detective elastic audio emmanuel editing each one's got its pros and its cons the more you use elastic audio and be detective the more you're going to degrade your tracks so just go for a good at the source and be sure that you know what you're listening to scratch track wass because that's what the drummer's playing too and that's what you're referencing but that might not be the actual feel I mean it's just a demo this right here ah it doesn't sound bad or anything that was done in a hotel room in two hours who's to say it's perfect it's just a guide for sean this they're not perfect tracks and as much as sean says he's a responsive drummer as a producer what I would do is say no the music's got to respond to you because you dictate the field and I think that an amateur producer would say the drummer says he's responsive to the music so we will go with what the scratch tracks feel well what did what feel the scratch tracked it states and I think that that would be wrong this example so any more questions about editing I think we look good here you guys good in the room you're so here's one question sure if I sample, replaced the kick snare and tom's, but also want to edit the room mike's house, I go about that. I'm not sure I follow the question. I guess, you know, my thought is like phase issues between those three seem like they would be the main concern there. Okay, so first of all, I would if I'm understanding this correctly, you superior instead, yeah, probably, but no, if you say that's, not an option, I would first edit the acoustic drums. Uh, too, with the room likes everything selected, like I showed in a group not separated, not separated out, and then, once the track is completely edited and the performance is in time, then add the samples, so samples, air next and also and discover this class samples air next. But you want to do it, is to separate things, edit, then replace. So if that makes sense, yeah.