Inside EDM Mixes Part 2
I like he accuse something into a master bus that I already have established a little bit and I'm going to get started with the master bus before I doubt any sound because it will help me to make better decisions so let's show what we got going here very common and very similar to the rock mix I have a syrup but going on but this has turned up way bore the thick this ends the mount is way more than I do in iraq mix so now one of the things you'll notice here is that I also have this output came down sixty b this is because once I added all the cq on it it started to clip the truck so instead of turning down the input level on this something about the sound of when I turned on the input level on the massenburg compared to sarah I like the way this harada's experiment with both this is another one's things of just playing with the variables in your plug ins that something about the way you attenuate in this it could be me hearing things but I'm going to go with my hallucination even if i...
t's a hallucination it's a much better looking whose nation on this plug in even if somebody tells me it's just the same math I don't think you need to justify it much more than that feels good to me so I'm doing it so as you could see here, I have some pretty drastically here. There's five d be upon the bottom end on the top end. I'm going way down into the mids and shelving four point sixty b and on every song on this record, this changed a little bit. I should say on ben. The other thing I noticed I did is to get the vocals working and cutting a little better on this record is I did a two point to boost, and it also just sounded a lot like the other records we were a being too is I just, you know, we were a being too this cash, cash record and it's, just like I heard that toughness in the kicking snare and like, the way that overall frequency was there when I was a being, I heard that there I did that it felt good it's a lot of the time. Like, once we get to the a being pointed the process, I'm just doing this fighting overall acute, that matches the things were comparing two and feels good in this track a little better so that on the master bus, we also have way get to a more dense part of form, those dogs got way so as you could see here, I'm doing something a little crazy, which is I'm not hitting the bottom end on this this was I think one of two or three songs on this record where I decided at the bottom and multi banding wasn't working for me and that the bass drum just sounded great the way it was it was cutting and I'm letting get caught in other places, but it worked for me I am hitting the compression hard now as you could see the cerise not really a bus compressor, so this is kind of a lot of my compressions, so hitting two or three d b here isn't so out of the question to me, any other white ratio is one point seven to, you know, basically somewhere around two to one ratios just lightly getting these frequencies to beam or even as they change, especially in this dance song like this the frequencies changed so much as I opened the next song you'll see it's a little bit different because it's a little bit more of a white classic dance song. So the next process or you're going hey look he's doing to multi bank versions I'm actually not I want you to watch this because this is I will also say this that I didn't learn this remote anybody I learned this because my tears told me to do this so watch the way this I guess it's downward expansion that I do on the song is the way I want to play it to you with him without this coming on those dogs way thought this is a really subtle setting, but what I'm basically doing is I'm allowing this downward expansion to push out details when other frequencies get quiet. What this really does to me is it pushes out from the aggressions of the since my reverb tales and just the details of the mix kind of pop out when frequency spins are at a point where they're allowed him to get through. It just brings up details in the mix. I set this different all the time, but I will tell you this it never works in iraq song for me, but in dance songs there's something about this setting, and I heard, you know, it's funny, I was doing a song with on this really talented artist named rookie that I worked with her just put out a great new video with dmc from run dmc today, and we're wasting a lot usher climax. I just felt like I heard this, and I thought that I think this is so one of those things is that this was just experimenting and it's something that works for me, I don't know if it'll work for you, but like I heard that a lot of time those details would push out and it didn't sound an automated way it sounded a master bus way and I developed this and this is just something I do but really playing with some of this down for expansion, you know, at times I even played the dour compression which why this's onto its just and neat little trick that brings out the details I've never seen anybody else do it, I did it by listening I think that that's part of the other thing that you should always be developing is just see what you hear and find new ways to get what you want like it doesn't have to be a recipe, so when he gave you mess around with settings you've never messed with the maybe you'll find a new tone let's go the next thing the master bus chain, which is thiss fab filter saturn, I'm cranking this one it's a forty nine percent let's hear it with him without way it's doing a lot on the song and this is probably about as high as I ever turn it up, but yet again, it's just giving me this really exciting radio sound that I hear last we have a common setting we've seen me use all through this shop is that our through this class is the phoenix tape emulation what's show what this is doing to me, what this is doing is it's allowing me to process the transients and the things that are hitting that would be the compressor on this final multi band limiter a little bit tighter, it just allows me to get around this and more detail out of the mix that I really enjoy it's yet again, I'm hitting this really suddenly and then lastly, we have the l three multi band compressor, which just allows me to get it loud. I'm using the ultra dither, the standard release I try, I always try a bunch different releases on this thing with media because the aggressive master released could work really well with the d m soak in the scaled but on this one, the standard arc worked, so I'll say this too that's a lot of compression for may and I don't usually hit a truck this heart, and when I master this record next week, I will be taking this off by about cell, probably balancing all the tracks on the record using this and letting their master busses probably stay pretty similar to what they are, but this will get adjusted. The other thing I was doing is I knew I had a dural meter, which is the best meter you can get this is the waves dural meter andi I knew what the other songs of the record looked like through this as we mix that I've tried to make sure we were always in the range any time I would think maybe this tracks too loud or too soft I just give myself a second look and get my son perspective of maybe I should back it off I don't just go well the meter says it's wrong I have to now change it but I let it consider my idea and let it consider whether I should change something those dogs got coming your way if there's any meter especially if you own the waves bundles thiss comes free with a bunch of them there's no meter better than this in my opinion so I highly recommend it so let's talk about what we're doing with vocals here because there's some interesting things so yesterday we talked a bunch about sub mixing so what you could see here is we have one two three four five six seven, eight and then we have another this is four tracks of gang vocals about the house down um so we have that and then another one that's just a lead vocal and then on top of that we have more vocals going there's so many vocals going in this course let's just check this out for a second put the maze so what's going on here is I have all these cendana box because they're doing the downtown bus because they're all doing the same thing each one of these is getting a different process, they're all blended very well, but the one thing we wanted, especially the publishers on this record really want the lead vocalist whose name is carter are tell carter he's a phenomenal, phenomenal emc and just focused all around. They were really want him to stand out, so I kind of have all the rest of this is just like adding a bit of a party vibe to the song, you know, we're staying put your heads high, we wanted it to sound like there's a party saying the back room, but we also didn't want it so loud that it's like, oh my god, there's a gang global there, it's just the subtlety so that's all being blended, but because that's facility, I didn't need t q each of these and process the more I saved some dsp by just sending it all down one bus and process there. So let's, talk about what else is going on in this processing you want to find love I so as we could here, we have some really t pain doubt auto tune going on here. So what I'm doing here to diminish this and this is kind of just the counter millie, that we're leaving in the back. When I actually try to take the sex, I thought it might be harder the main milady but then with it out, it didn't sound as good. I'm doing a lot of the queue to get rid of that kind of abrasive mid range auto tune sound but then it's not a little too dull so like I let it sit here I brought out some or high mids finding how two q auto tune is a challenge every time and it's always different with every singer but wake of you doing that all overly auto tuned sound you I very rarely find like I almost feel like you treat it like a sin because it sounds so computerized and the pitch is air so absolute in solid so I'm giving it a whole bunch of that and then this is very indicative of what the rest of the vocals look like if you see pretty much running the same plug ins on all the vocals with some little exceptions this's a little bit more distortion put them hands, huh? If you want to find love, I put them hands if you want to find there's something about the storming the auto tune a little bit that makes it just a little bit more musical visit get some harmonics out of it, I don't always do it as you could see, I also have the saturn doing a whole lot of it, it just really helps there's tape saturation I hate the sound of auto tune, so I'm always trying to work really hard to do it with this fate a writer I'm also right hard cause I want to get this sound I don't care if it gets a little spotty because it's really in the background were tryingto push it out of the years but I also want every word of it and every bit of articulation to be there so I never ride this this high unless it's something really in the background and this is in the background in this case let's also look at the multi band, put them hands, huh? If you want to find love I so this is a great example because the yesterday the multi band on the vocals wasn't hitting it very hard but we're really going hard on this one put them hands, huh? If you want to find love tonight if you notice here also as he hits different notes it's hitting it harder, it really keeps its place in the mix, which is why I love the multi band vocals, especially in the dense mix I'm not going to hit the multi band that hard on vocal sound natural, but what it doesn't need to sound natural, this is a fantastic way to do it there's also a compressor put them hands, huh? If you want to find love I really really like um I have a delay in the track and yet again we talked about this yesterday I want the character of that delay going into the harmonizer the reverb there's two river bs on this truck we're sending it into that whole reverb that I played you before and then a second reverb which is a medium chamber on dh I believe I have a good amount of distortion on this what's sold that out. Put them hands if you want a love one of the concepts we didn't get to discuss yesterday this ghost rock medium is that when you're doing a lot of distortion it takes the story really cut through this is why you often hear distorted base and really distorted music is that what and you need is more harmonics. The more hamas you create, the more chances there are for you to hear that frequency in the mix and this just tends to help cut that through. I very rarely distorted reverb, but in this case it was like those things where it's like with that distortion all of a sudden it made it so much easier for you to cut through let me play you this without that distortion of the full bix just really helps the sustained to cut through on that vocal so on ben last leave the very standard thing my friend the dark essence sapphire to darken it a little bit more a little bit of process and that's what sounded good to me let's also point out that just like yesterday were using the waves doubler same type of thing up in and down eighteen cents you know there's tons of presense I do you know this happens to be the same priest as I showed yesterday I usually scroll through these I do use this one a lot and then I have a vocal ambience which you know, a light hall it's actually the same senators this and then some of the locals depending on what they need I'm putting it into that big long haul this one's a much lighter hall what's up so out of vocal to show this what's here this abbey it's up I picked a brooch I'm going to go back to this know what you all about that in under five and you have been doubts and you want to see the world have you fly run to go but your life is getting harder you can't credit go when you get a way that we can take the right keys in ignition maybe we could take a drive through so as he could hear I'm doing this very, very suddenly on that ambience track so it's just that the river between white he's rapping most of the time so it shouldn't be a very loud thing but it is a kind of long river so a a question from james murphy which we confirmed is thie james murphy for obituary was awesome and my favorite of his band's dis incarnate which is all I don't know if you remember the beginning of that record one of my favorite death metal bristle time uh I have several he says I have several macros a scripted in quick keys that opened the gain a s said it either plus minus ten twenty thirty et cetera and closed the ass is a lot of time do you ever use quickies or anything similar I do I have that stuff at home I actually do not have it for the game which is interesting and I think that that's a fantastic idea but I actually quickie through like a winding triggers and all sorts of fun and silly stuff but I should actually make that is that is really really great point yeah, I know l levees assistant john john douglas who's one of best dorm editors in the business is like in love with quick keys he has all kinds of crazy macros and set up stuff set up I should probably look into that too because it john works like shockingly fast and a lot of that is because he's quick he's so much another question yes. Okay this is from the rial logan who wants to know if you can explain the downward compression a little bit more in detail the damn word expansion sure so think of it this way particularly when I first developed this whenever there wasn't enough five hundred hertz in the mix so let's say when my vocals on and the singers singing there's a whole lot of five hundred herbs because his voice existed there whenever he would stop singing it would push up that five hundred hertz and it's basically just a setting in that alchemist using that that so it kind of just kept the energy of the mc it's the same all the time and I do this all the time for medium stuff but like on this song it looks like I did somewhere around like the almost like five hundred to seven hundred and then up around three to five k it's just sparkle details but just think of this way when that frequency is absent it's pushing it up a little bit to give something because you had the room there when the singer wasn't singing and now when that singer disappears it brings it out and keep some fullness I honestly like that's the best I understand it I wish I understood it more I really just trusted my ears on this one I trust my years in this one it's like you know, a lot of the stuff I'm able to talk really eloquently on this is one of those few things that I'm just like, hey, it works, I don't quite get all the science from it, but yet again, that felt that al qaida alchemists from a flux is such a powerful tool and there's other ones I've done of the exact opposite thing of, like, you know, upward expansion toe ad attack every time I'll go on the guitars on just through the upper mid range, so that every time the guitarist hits the attack of the guitar, it brings out some more of just that marriage. We showed yesterday that with the tom's there's times that I was just boosting up like the air in the attack on those tom's every time they hit to give a little bit more impact, I really just trust my years. I sometimes just mess around with this stuff when I'm not getting the sound I want and try to see if I can get a more three d sound cool. All right, well, let's, ask another question. This from paul simon is hanging out with pablo and always rounding paul simon to fans in the house I'm a little more or garfunkel, but we'll leave that alone. We won't touch that one right now so paul wants to know if you find you lose objectivity quicker with ibm given it's so powerful and constant it seems like it would wear your ears down quicker very funny for me I find the opposite but you know what the funny thing is I think this is I will fully fess up that I listen to farm or medium these days than I do rock music most of my music west listening since I work on a lot of rock music is the last thing I want to do each day is here more distorted guitars after I've been doing them what I find makes me lose my objectivity is not actually the genre of music it's getting two trees instead of forest on apart and it drives me absolutely crazy and then all of a sudden I just don't know what to do or I start losing my emotional balance something annoys me I'm not in that like you know if you I don't know how much the cameras on me but like my head's bobbing and I'm trying to make my head but when I do these mixes and like when I lose that I get to a frustrated place where I'm not liking something I was my objectivity really really real fast all of a sudden so that's ah big thing yes of the grass to touch base on ah objectivity uh when you when you're working on genres, that may not be your particular favorite uh, do you lose it faster? You know, what's funny is I actually losing less? Because I'm it's not my favorite? I don't know it well, so I've been working with one of my really good friends eyes name is ken stewart he's, one of the best producers I know, and we do a lot of almost hip hop influenced country like it's crunch of the lotte group. I'm gonna be honest, I lived in williamsburg, new york like I don't know listen to country so shockingly a new yorker doesn't we don't even have a country station, I think, but I have to do so much a being and I'm basically just trying to imitate a sound that I don't lose my objectivity when I was my objectivity is when I have like this gold, I'm just like I talked a lot about this that, like, I used to listen to jimmy world believe american, I'm like I'm gonna make my kicks on like that and then what? I don't get it, then my objectivity is just gone all of a sudden, so I think if it's anything it's having to articulate a goal, but I also have talked to friends and they say the exact opposite I think you do find what works for you but for me I maintain objectivity way better if I'm not familiar like you know I did a ah like space ambien record and I never listen to that stuff like you know I listen to a little brian you know when I was young but like I didn't know that and I was able to keep complete objectivity because I was always just listening to the records this guy was putting up for me all day yeah, I guess that has to go if you have less comparison you're you're you know, not putting it up against so many other things and especially when it's something that you really enjoy aiken I can imagine that year aa lot mohr emotionally invested in trying to be able to replicate that sound as well I think it's see even well it's so it's emotionally invested and it's ah just a little about like when you get too specific and you're like you know no true if you track a guitar there's too many variables to make it sound exactly excited so you want to have that same thing we talked about like five references where you could trying to get in the ballpark of something have it be its own thing instead of just being the exact same thing as blank if we have one more question it'll take me a bit of tow boot this up so okay let's do it um, there was a question that came in from duly duel who said that you recommend to use genelec ten thirty speakers done in that right? Okay, that that that is what I use go into guitar center and most guitar centers have a place where you can switch speakers around a whole bunch and look at the various different speakers listen for which one jumps out at you and like, you know, they're they're happy so what? You play your own stuff on it? It see what sounds helpful to you, like, if you know your room like you hate the way based sounds in your room and, you know, maybe you need a lighter bass speaker there's lots of companies that will now, though, let you take things, bring the whole, but they have a return policy. Find somebody with a good return policy, try some figures out on your credit card returned the one you don't like borrow speakers and you should be great, so dooley said that they want to look him up, but they're no longer manufactured. So what? Your guidelines for a similar product by this or another company gentle like eighty thirties or what they make now with this I buy these on ebay consistently, I want every pair I've had on ebay they have never had one blow already thinking, uh but I will also say I recommend these yeah, because I really like adams but one thing about adams is they could get a little weird on really fast music like specifically stuff with a lot of double bass they sound a little funny to me when the transience air too fast but I love listening to music out adams yeah, because I'm a big fan of the higher ed care k's even the rockets I think sound fantastic I have friends who do great work on the mackey's but I don't like the way they sound I should say that. Okay, cool. Thank you. So what's do another quick example of some stuff I do with mixi let's give you an idea of this. This is a much more classic sound big medium truck. This is from todd who I wrote my book with bad sexual harassment they are sexual harassment dot com it's a great track off their last bp. You could get this by gore their website if you like it, I believe it's free, so check it out. Wait way cool. So I want you get a sense for this track before I explain to you some of these decisions that obviously this has a lot more space and a lot less denser field the streets on fire saw todd goes for a much more classic sound on his tracks, you know a little bit more of a classic dads think that the buttered got a trend chasing dance thing that goes on a lot of time. So I also see that you know, there's tons of people doing great stuff like that it's like somewhere this like rack and paid would president like, you know, this is a big sound. The df records out I want to explain when you get tracks like this some of the other philosophies around it's it's not all dance music is just this dead said the public thing these days, even though that's a lot of the trade these days so let's talk about a few different things. So todd now has an excellent, excellent vocal set up that we got for we got about road in t k a chameleon labs seventy six so to that of a big fed of I think it's the best affordable bike pre uh que combination we got about a half a bar audio lever lor for cheap compressor caused by opinion. If you're gonna compress your vocals of the computer that's the lowest price, what did you could get? That gives you a great result, but this was before that he was singing in tow, a horrible mike that just sounded atrocious, so I did do a ton of processing and I know todd I have recorded them through my mike he's one of my best friends and he usually sounds great so but we had to do tons of ridiculous things to make this horrible vocal training use taps on good one of the things that we haven't seen come up yet is so this is a great free plug in from sound hack of you had a sound track dot com they've to free plug in packs and this one so this is called shabby chev this is yet again another distortion what's here what this does to the vocal real fast mom still falling more so just take my heart from me a spell, a lot of excitement the high end you could control these kind of harmonics I like this fifth order harmonic that it can control just really sounds awesome to may so that was one of the things the other thing I'll point out is that we're doing tons of repairing work on this. This is a ridiculous cq curve and if anybody showed me this, I'd say that's wrong if you could see I'm putting sixteen d be of high shelf at forty one but this is the thing I think we were getting up with repair is that yes, sometimes you need to go crazy, which were the stuff this mike that he was recording with like to just give you an idea like I don't know where he got it and he corrected the problem because we knew this was a problem and like not silly foul actually doesn't set about our through my master and shane too so it's not even a trask a difference but no matter what, it just wasn't doing the I think we wished it would do is track ed it's just like a will to dole for his voice and getting the articulation out so I had to do you know there's another one of these essence elka pressure and to defer distortions just a lot of work toe get this to work and I think it's we get back to the point that I really want to make with this is that sometimes you just gotta say, use your ears not your eyes I know that I said twenty dvf community accumulate compressions usually a problem but yet again I want to make an example of that there's times that's, not the case so let's put out some other interesting things I think of this truck so on the vocal processing, you see, I have our friend the center plug it. So we discussed this two days ago about how we deal with the center of the sides of the mix and how we want a process that stuff both of the vocal verb and the vocal harmonizer, I'm getting rid of what's the center one of the things we really liked what we start to this mix was the idea of that. I think they were listening to like depeche mode source of the bet the really was like the reverb just jumped out of the size. We really liked that for the sparseness of this course. So I think my falling more so just take my heart from me spell you cast us with nothing sells take my far from home these hills there is a mess might take a little headphones for you to fully hear about here again as much as it does it, let me play the knicks so this showed a little bit more once you turn that on and off, you could really kind of see that the reverb comes out of a different place the mix. So this is one of those things to be conscious of is that times if you want to do some cool manipulation that river bs not sick the way you walk, you could kind of bring up the sides and bring down the center and sometimes that's what makes a certain reverb setting in vocal effect jump out and I really like this example says this is a much more sparse saw. We really wanted the reverb fill in some of the blacks and it really did I should also show you that, you know, yet again, we were talking about in last track that one stereo with plug it on this pad, which I think do I remember thiss opens the song, it plays a lot through the song, I'll go to the arrangements, we could actually see it's pretty much through the whole sog, it just worked really well to have this be a little wider. Then the rest of the song a z could see with certain, all the way up it's a pse far out as it goes, but it just kept that that pad doing its constant thing, the song nothing ever gets to the way of it, and really worked out the other funny thing about this pad, as you could see, we did a bunch of different distortions to it delay what's here, this dry and ill at each thing on as it goes, yeah, really drastic e q two, we kind of, like, really reinvented this one, so I'm going keep the story without I'll put this stuff on this gets back into the things like where I kind of talked about repairing stuff that, you know, this was so dull in murky, but felt like it needed to be brighter, but with the where he wanted the filter, set it just didn't have a darkness as compared to what you crank up the travel dark patch and I think that that is one of the things you learn when mixing mediums that sometimes the emotion of a patch you are do it isn't where it's going to sit in the mix and you have to learn that the other thing is this just wasn't harmonically rich like theo this decapitate her really and we haven't really got much of this even though I used this one all the time like really kenbrell it out it just really adds some harmonics that really make it weigh more pleasant to listen to the delay we're using as you could see his dotted eighth it was just to give a little bit more of a tale to it they already had a delay on the sound I wanted a little bit more of it you could sometimes turn up a delay on top of another delay and it will really work out well I guess the last thing I'll point out oh yes actually this is another interesting day with that stereo thing is the base of this song is right here, so one of the things we decided to do is that yet again we wanted the bass come out of the sides a little bit more than the center we were really keeping that center sacred here, so listen to what this day it's subtle, but there really was a thing of that we wanted that echo to be a little bit brought out and it's a diminished to the sides and not unlike kind of let that center space be secret for the drums in the base and you know, this is all part of your art is that finding how you want that stereo spread it to be like this isn't something I had to do to make the mix work. This was something that we saw and we tracks were referencing, we're going, you know, this would be really cool to do with this track, and we decide to do it other than that, you know, you really see yet again it's like pretty minimal drum process because these drums were really processed beforehand, they gave me great samples, so I really didn't need to do a lot of work. You know, the crash I might have a more high passage because there's not much down there, but like, you know, yet again, you know, sometimes sure, this pad I had to do some crazy curing that vocal but there's also time to note, sometimes you don't need to do much he q and stuff just sounds great eyes their questions absolutely yes, so the first one from north and recording for adm do you still mix at eighty two d b so you make no matter what because that's where the fletcher months and curved evens out it's about your hearing it's about not getting your fatigue now I will also say this that when I do that also think of I mix in eighty two that I do a lot of dicks to get sixty seven I will tell you this that a didn't cd a mix like the streets of fire compared to the central ross wanted, you know there's so much competing for all the same space that I find that listing quiet a lot really helps that I will especially due to think of like I'll turn this monitor thing just here full feet of because they're not control here but I turned it as so quiet and I try to really do a lot of my level like an automation in the dead spics and see what I could hear in a really quiet volume and make sure the vocals never is going to get a base of a because especially when your ears are getting fatigued from lots of aggressive trouble like there's so much trouble on that street fired because we're a b this porter robinson courted cash cash track there's so much trouble it could really hit your years hard yeah when I'm on when I'm making death metal songs my ears get tired fast yeah, well you also have a really aggressive trouble in your music you have an aggressive, aggressive troubling your music there, finn. All right, so I am search has a question regarding stereo with and checking your mixes in mono how do you make sure sterile with translates well on mono systems, I've found that at times when I've used waves s one, it gets lost when a speed in mono so one of the thing also two things about this I mix in mono so much it's very easy for me to know this the other thing I should say about, like, we're talking about the eighty two d b it's like I'm mixing in mono at least fifteen percent of the time, usually when I'm at home, once I have the song, we talked about the phases of the mix, like where I'm at the nit picky phase, I'm going to mano almost every other listen on a different pair of speakers, as I mentioned, I've a mano in his ten mano aven tone, mono and ht I'm hitting player than I have this jam box I in putting it to those so much so I'm hearing what that mano is doing, but the other tipple give us, I find, and I don't know why, you know s one is one of the oldest plug ins, and I don't know if technology is just caught up with us, but that air stereo with gives me much less problems than waves us one. When it comes to mano translation, I don't know if they're doing math different. I don't know if it's just a different method, but, uh, the reason you don't, you see me using waves, that's one, even though I'm an order of it. I've owned it since nineteen, ninety nine or two thousand or something crazy like that. I don't use it because it doesn't work as well as that one, and it also doesn't work as well as b x shred, spread, or whatever brain works is one is works really well, too.