Life Gets In the Way - A Remix

Here’s a track I stamped a while ago on RR. However, I am in the throws of finishing up my album, and I’m decided to revisit this mix, because with the benefit of hindsight, I was a little unhappy with some elements. In any case, here are the two mixes. Let’s call them Apples and Oranges.

I won’t tell you which one is the new mix just yet, but it would be great if you could let me know which one you prefer & why. Thanks!



“Tangerines” New mix combining ideas from both of the above:


easy question. I like the way that the vocals sit in the oranges mix. otherwise it is a toss up for me.

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I like apples, simply because it’s cleaner. Less low mid buildup. I like the guitars on oranges, but everything else on apples.

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Thanks Eric!

Thanks Dillon…

That’s one of each, I guess… Any other takers?

I like apples, though I’d like it if you trimmed the highs off a bit. A tad bit bright, but I like it better than the sound of the oranges, even if oranges sounds more organic.

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Thanks DTJ

I like the wider occupancy of the stereo field for the guitars on Oranges, and it also sounds a touch brighter overall too (btw, listening on my Sony MDR7506 cans). Also, the single-note riffs sound more like they “go with” the power chords than is the case in Apples-- I realize that’s totally subjective, and I’m just not sure how to properly articulate that.

And I’m with Eric on the vox… I like how they sit better in Oranges too. They gel with the guitars more effectively to my ear. And finally, the drums are popping a bit better on Oranges, especially the snare…

So I’m going with Oranges. Orange you glad you asked? :wink:

Edit: And btw, I love the song! I totally relate to it, life getting in the way… has been especially true for me for pretty much the entire past year, it’s been one flippin shitshow after another…

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Yep LOVE this song, great to hear it again.
Hmm, I’ve tangled my ears a bit listening between the two versions so I’ll stick to my initial notes -
my preference is for Apples, I like the clarity and brightness of the mix but… I did wonder if it could be a teeny touch less bright, with maybe a smudge more distortion on the vox from time to time just to dirty it a tiny bit? I love the panned voices of the dueling guitars, scrumptious.
Going back to oranges, it just felt a little less ‘out there’ and distinctive…
These are gut thoughts only though as I strain to find something to bash - great song and mixes!!


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Like the oranges a little bit better. I get into liking the song so much with that great guitar and singing that I forget about specifics. Your stuff is just so dang good. I thought at 13 seconds that the little riff stuff was good, but I wouldn’t do it twice because It is just more time until the singing starts??? An how could you be unhappy about some of the elements? seriously? ha ha


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Thanks Dave - Really appreciate the input! :+1:

Thanks Emma, that’s great information!

Hey Paul, thanks so much for chiming in. You know, I was just thinking the very same thing about that riff when I was listening through the song the other night. Hmmm… Might be time for a trial edit!

Didn’t read anyone’s comments prior to this to keep a little bias out of things. I think Oranges works better for me. Seems like the ambiance is more fitting for the tune. I don’t know if you retracked the slide part at the beginning, but it sounded better to me too, like the notes were in tune a bit tighter, maybe because there was less of a tail on them? I also liked how the background vocals sat better. Now I’ll go see what others said and probably become the Lone Ranger.

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Thanks Bob, your comments are quite illuminating in view of the way I did the revised mix. Nevertheless, I think by my count Oranges might be edging out Apples as the IRD preferred mix.

I’d like to try to get a few more replies before I commit to a decision though.

Thanks for listening and commenting - much appreciated!

I like oranges more I like the energy but I prefer the vox in apples, they do sit in the mix better .

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Hey Fh always a pleasure to listen to your writing and mixing talents!

I think Apples is the remix.

Sorry can’t pick ether one they both have things I like about them. I would say if you could morph them together that would be the one.

Apple Mix- Like the added top end on the vocals, gt, toms, and snare cut back a little tho
not liking it so much on the kic, cymbals.

Like the bass maybe a little low low- mids added back on bass and some more sub for the kick not much

The bass seems a little more evened out Interesting how you tucked that bass note in at .05

I also pick up more of the underneath stuff a little more in this mix.

Overall, more grit not enough body.(add some body and cut the hi some this might be the one)

Orange Mix- I like the body of the gt. bass and kic in this one just maybe some adjusting between the 3
Toms needs added hi end

Bass notes jumping out more not sure if it’s the low mids in this mix…

Overall ,This mix is a little more organic sounding than the other one. Good sounding mixl, but depends what you’re going for with your album.( a little adjustment in the low , low-mid and hi areas).

Would be interested in what you did in the remix different from the mix version (2buss or more individual tracks stuff) or a combo of both Thanks.

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Hey Jerze, thanks for the careful listen and the comprehensive comments. You’re right, “Apples” is the remix - “Oranges” was the original.

I felt the drum sound wasn’t quite right in the original mix. To me it sounded like the kick and snare didn’t match each other, and the kick especially, sounded overly “clicky” and thin compared with the fatness of the snare in “Oranges”.

My original idea was to just open my original mix, tweak the kick and snare a tad and leave it at that. It proved to be far more problematic than that…

This was one of the last mixes I did in Sonar, which I hadn’t even opened for some months now. Sonar decided to spit the dummy, and not find half of the plugins I had on the mix. It took me many hours of opening the file in “safe” mode, and of re-scanning plugins and general trouble-shooting before I could actually successfully open the original mix…

Then, when I finally got to open it, it was playing ok, but when I went to bounce/render the mix, Sonar again spat the dummy and decided to play back certain elements out of synch with each other.

By this time I had enough. I bounced out stems of all the musical and vocal elements except the drums. I pulled those stems, as well as the raw drum tracks into a new session in Reaper (thank goodness for Reaper!) and remixed the drums from the ground up, blending them with the existing stems of everything else.

So essentially, Apples is pretty much the same as Oranges except for the drums. I did make a few small EQ tweaks on the other elements, and I changed the bass more comprehensively to match the new drums. Essentially all the other elements are the same - same performances, effects, processing.

Personally, at this stage, I prefer Apples overall, as I think it matches the sonics of my other album tracks better. However, I do agree with many of the observations made about the strengths of the original “Oranges” mix.

Thanks again for your input - much appreciated!

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Well, I’ll be a monkey’s uncle. Yet another blow to my already shaky bashing credibility! :stuck_out_tongue::stuck_out_tongue_closed_eyes::roll_eyes:

But I dearly love that colloquialism “spit the dummy”, which I first picked up when I lived in the UK in the early 90s… so evocative! :nerd_face: :baby:

Not at all, Dave! Your observations were in fact, pretty much spot-on in line with the changes I made. (Apart from the one about “Oranges” being brighter - but that may be down to the high frequency hearing loss you’ve mentioned in the past).

But I dearly love that colloquialism “spit the dummy”, which I first picked up when I lived in the UK in the early 90s… so evocative! :nerd_face: :baby:

Haha, yeah sometimes I forget that most here are US-based, so that phrase is probably a complete mystery to most readers. Luckily you’ve lived here, so you know what I’m talking about!..

Explanation for non-Antipodeans: Dummy = Pacifier… The expression “Spit the dummy” alludes to a small child having a tantrum and, in the process, spitting out their pacifier, refusing to be…er…pacified. Usually used when someone gets very angry, or something refuses to work.

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I’ll bet you’re right-- I was not in fact wearing my hearing aids. Having been home sick as a dog over my long-planned holiday break, with the house to myself but for the dog, I’ve not been wearing them.

And be advised, that lovely expression has been applied to some highly technical things… when I was at Macquarie we’d routinely use it when one or another of the analytical instruments was acting up. “Well crap, the electron probe spat the dummy again…”


Sorry to hear you’ve been sick - what a rotten thing to happen on a break from work!

And be advised, that lovely expression has been applied to some highly technical things… when I was at Macquarie we’d routinely use it when one or another of the analytical instruments was acting up. “Well crap, the electron probe spat the dummy again…”

Yeah definitely - often applied to uncooperative printers etc… Other commonly used idioms: “Gave up the ghost” “Threw in the towel” “It’s stuffed”…and so on…

Oh shoot - late to the show. I was not going to read others’ remarks but did see that you already had the big reveal. I was going to say, I like the drums and tone better in Apples but the “cohesiveness” of Oranges, although Oranges felt a little muddy… I guess I don’t need to vote at this point. :slight_smile:

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