FluteCafe - Wasteland Mix (Violin, Cello, Orchestral Influence)

FluteCafe - Wasteland Mix (Violin, Cello, Orchestral Influence)
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Nice additions.

At the beginning the string seemed to wander a bit and seemed to be trying too hard to say, “here I am”, but by the chorus and gtr solo and outro, it was a nice addition.

I wonder what it would have been like if you tried playing some of the later melodies like “who knows” as early phrases in the song.


Thank you for the feedback @jamestoffee , when I wrote the early phrases of the song, the clashing of the violin and vocals was intentional, to highlight the internal conflict of the music and its emotional backstory. I do agree I tend to get carried away when I write, I played along as I listened to the track. The harmonies just came. I didnt try to follow any particular structure there. However, at the drop chorus I had planned the strings to give a bit more power to the buildup of the chorus.


That being your intention, I wonder what would it be like if you had played more dissonant notes in a call-and-response fashion instead.

Like mentioned already, the other sections worked well and enhanced the emotional feel.


i might try that and let you know, my guess is that it could disrupt the feeling of the song but I could also be pleasantly surprised.


This sounded great on my iPad earbuds. It is one of the top mixes I’ve heard so far. Excellent job.


@BigAlRocks thank you for your feedback. I did test the mix on a variety of speakers, it should scale well with any speaker :slight_smile: I have not mastered the mix yet though, I plan on bouncing it off outboard gear. Thank you for the test on ipad earbuds!


strings are a nice touch and very well done .Really enjoyed it


Thank you for your feedback!


Hello flutecafe and welcome to IRD!

I like the addition of the other instruments very cool. The tough thing is weaving the additional instruments in with the other parts. I feel at times things you added worked and other times they feel like they are competing with the vocal or other instruments. It’s hard to add things when a song is finished without going back and changing something to find that focal part or taking things out.

As for the mix things sound good overall. I like the up close and personal feel you went for. The little nitpicks are the kick which someone else mentioned and for me the ambiance. The kic is boomy maybe a little low pass at 100 down or a little cut at around 60 would have done it? Also, at times the lead vocal in that 250 range pokes out a little bit. I ended up using a dynamic eq on it 250 range just to knock it down at times instead of a eq that would have took it out. The nova plug in is a free one if you don’t have one. As for the ambiance I’m still learning but why did you chose the violins cellos to be set in a big room while the vocals, drums gt are in a small room?. Nice ending i also tried using her vocal lines in the song just seemed like they needed to be there .

Thanks for posting and nice job!


@Jerze thank you for the feedback!

One of the great things about this song was the tug of war between pleasure and pain. I wanted to create an envelope around the vocals to create the acoustic dissonance on purpose. It highlights the pain in her voice. I had normalized the acoustics and I did not like that version. It started sounding like a love ballad which I did not want.

As for the harmonies of the violin weaving in and out, I pretty much played along her track and they just came to me like a story. Same feeling as the tug between emotions. I do agree I might have gotten carried away in parts but I still loved them all together, tried removing them but then It wasnt as emotional as I wanted it to be. Vocals get a bit pushed back (creating the conflict you mention) towards the latter half of the song, is because I got a bit apprehensive with over doing the automation… At the drop Chorus, I wanted it to be big and powerful, just like her painful scream. I added ensembles there to create more power.

Looking back, I would push some of the violin the mid-song part either further back or remove some of it. I have a bit of an orchestral bias so, i love em all as they come lol


Love the strings!!!


I enjoyed this very much! Wonderful addition with the strings! Keep up the good work!


Thank you for the feedback!


Thank you @jculturemusic for your feedback!


Nicely done. A good balance of instruments and the overall dynamics are good. Taste wise i would prefer a little more of the guitars. I think there is a need to gel these tracks more. Either with a shared verb, some bus compression of all the elements, etc or combination of. Thanks for sharing.


@redworks thank you for your feedback!


I had to use one my own cooked up methods to come out with a fair rating for a contest like this. I have broken my feedback into scores and categories as Mix Engineering Related and Non Mix Engineering Related.
Personally I have seen Michelle put countless hours in this mix in the studio, right from the get go. From the violin to strings to mixing. My rating for this is still unbiased and fair. I think Cristina and Michelle can do some great work together…

Non Mix Related (half weight)
Feeling (emotion delivered)
Score: 5/5

The song itself had a lot of emotion to begin with and you did well to preserve it and enhance it as well.
I have heard all the mixes and contest and this is the only one that has been able to score in the emotion department. This mix has the ability to move and captivate the audience and it should do very well on stream and youtube.

Creativity and Production work (additions and their effectiveness)
Score: 4/5
The addition of the violin, dixie chicks style was a very clever idea, popular and emotional sound. It sits at the sweet spot and sound is spectacular.

Though the violin should have been taken away for a few measures mid-song and brought back in (easy fix).
Addition of ensembles in the chorus adds more power to the chorus.

Maybe turn the ensembles down by 1-2 db and see.

Mix related (full weight)
aesthetics (effects)
Score: 9/10
Overall the aesthetics were exceptional. Wise compression choices, good EQ work.
Vocals are very apt for the song ambience - “dry and wide”, very nicely placed between the violin and guitar.
They are dry but they dont sound as it they were in a small room.
Attack on the ‘Clapton’ guitar solo was very nice.

guitar could have used a bit more stereo image and width.
electric guitar sound in the chorus is a bit faint and thin, could have used slight fattening.

Balance (tone, levels, clarity)
Score: 8/10
Vocals are at a perfect level, nicely de-essed, without being too dull or too harsh.
Pitch seems to be good… Good warm tones and volume levels over all. Clarity is great.

some clips and clicks still evident, could have used some moderate riding in busier parts.

Overall score : 8.67 (9) calculated using partial weight method as [(4+5) +9 +8 ]/3]

Overall the song as showcased by this mix can rival top 40 modern day record songs with a bit of polish and and great mastering.

Its current, its tasteful, it works!


Is she your boss or something at the Flute Cafe?


lol no, no boss we dont have that kind of infrastructure. Its just a few friends collaborating together at times.


Thank you @AlphaVictor for your feedback!