Did some final alterations to the track which was featured in
July's Sound on Sound for Mix Rescue, and would love any feedback on this final edit (will
def leave it after this). Essentially I've always wished to replace my own vocal take
(female effect) with a proper singer in order to attain a smoother/musical feel - realise
its at the expense of character, but its weighing up commercialism with experimentalism.
So we're now a two person team working on more tracks.
Mike's mix on the
original track for the SOS article has been invaluable both in terms of opening my own
eyes and showing what can creatively be done with the right tools.
note the following things:
1. hissing - yup, aware of it, I'll gate the
instrument track thats causing this and re-upload at some point.
2. levels -
I've held back on limiting too much in the master chain, but I don't think it detracts
from the feel.
3. energy - controversial, but I ended up changing the drums
entierly, and bloomed one of the guitars (actually a SQ Pro-1 through an amp) to create a
softer sound. Dynamics should still be there. I'll explain more on this below.
4. kick/bass levels - think the kick might be too loud or EQ'ed a bit too extremely,
although I need to listen with subs to check this.
Mikes SOS Version:
This version is based on multitracks that Mike sent me after
the article, so I created a few additions and changed a few elements.
Drum wise, I opted for a more jazz/soft rock style kit mainly to get a snappier
sound, which I think may cause some contention depending on whether you like/dislike
heavier stuff, but I don't think it detracts from the song itself. Using Mike's input I
ended up placing the overheads through a UAD LA2A to give a wide open effect... works
really nicely on the ride and crash cymbals.
In the original the
bass was based on an Commodore Amiga PCM which I then resequenced in Ableton Live, but it
ended up causing too much digital rubish to seep through, so I decided to use the SQ Pro-1
with LFO controlled pulse-width modulation - its something you don't really hear much
today, but it sound nice to my ears.
At the very end you
might notice a 1/8 bass hit... this is a Clavinet D6 going through a Marshal Bass amp.
Just wanted things to bounce along more.
Obviously this is the
most controversial element. The original track was praised for having a characterful style
with my voice processed to sound like a fake female singer. I thought about this for a
long time, but the sad truth is that I'm not a good singer (hence disguising my voice), so
ultimately from a performance level I would prefer to team with other people if it means
making something I feel to be a better sound. The new vocal is going through some pretty
hefty equipment - Neumann M149 and x2 U87 (for grabbing room footprint) which then heads
in to a UAD 1176. Also did a separate send which goes in to an EMT 250 with an LA2A on a
slow attack/release which makes it sit nicely (learnt this by listening to a Radiohead
track which used a similar effect).
The original has more
energy, but because of the new vocal take, and drum change I felt that this needed to
change as well. Before it was a sequence from the Pro-1, however I've opted to do it on a
guitar and the bloomed it to give a nice wash.
Enjoy! Loved all of the feedback from creating this track.
Next step, this is hopefully going off to get mastered as I don't trust my studio for that
side of things. Want this on radio if its good enough so will probably pigeon hole it.
Lawrence Eldridge - Obscuresounds