Like an Omen - A 4 year project almost done

Like an Omen - A 4 year project almost done
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#8

Thanks ocnor,

Yep, seems to be the general consensus. I’ll back off on the compression a little. I own some music like this that has a similar feel, but I’m not sure it’s working for me here and I’d like the EP to be pretty consistent, so whatever I can get going here I will apply to the others when they are done.
I’ll see if less compression helps the vocals and drums… then go from there. I appreciate your feedback and thanks for listening.

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#9

I like the song as well and I agree that it’s over compressed. I need to listen again with ear buds but on my laptop speakers, it’s a little jarring.

Hey Big Al!!
Thanks for listening. I’ll fiddle with the overall compression settings and review again. Cheers.

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#10

Question: Did you master it yourself?

Thanks Jonathan!

No, no. I have recently started using eMastered, which is a similar online software to Landr. I know some people will cringe at that, but my band has been using it for a couple of months and it is definitely adding that 5-10% to my mixes at the end. It has fairly basic settings but I did push the compression a little more on this mix compared to what I’d do normally.
I think I’ll try a few varied settings (like removing some low mids and volume) in various combinations and see how that goes.

re-distributing certain sources into the top end. I’m getting a lot of 250-800 and not enough of 5-8k for a ‘heavy’ mix.

Will definitely look at this. I’ll analyse the frequencies and see where I can move things around. It’s a tricky one being a stoner rock sort of sound which can often sound quite muddy, or sometimes the opposite.

I like most of the choices of the tones. The snare and kick sound good. Guitars amp settings seem to really capture the vibe here. I wish the bass had more of that 120-300hz-ish range to itself.

Thanks. The drums are simply SS4 with my drummer doing his thing.

What did you use for reference mixes?

Ok… here we go. I used different band for different elements.
For the drums (playing style too to an extent), the overall compression and very loosely, the vocals (more that they are not overly aggressive and some of the distortion that I use a bit in other songs), I used this band, whom I love:
Silver Devil - Follow Me Down

For the bass, I went for one of my all time favourite heavy bass sounds from another fav band:
Breach. I love the top end distortion sound they achieve and I’m actually quite proud of replicating that that it has become my go to sound for my band. Still working on the lows though, but I’m pround of how the highs get through the mix nice and aggressively without it being fizzy and washy like a lot of bass distortion can

Other than that, not specific reference point for guitars etc, just general taste…

Thanks again for listening. I’ll get some more versions out shortly.

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#11

Hey Cristina and thanks for listening!

You said you wanted a slightly crushed sound, but I think it may be too much compression.

Yep, seems to be the feel that it is too compressed. I will back off of that in the mastering software as it is not like that before I run it through that.

I don’t care for the solo’d drum sound (I think because it’s too compressed.) Once the rest of the mix comes in though, the drums sound appropriate.

Interesting. I would love to know a little more about what you mean here. I say that only in that this song is the opening track and the drums sort of need to announce something big is here. I have an absolutely smashed drum track that I blend in with the original, so maybe I’ll pull that out for the start and see what that sounds like.

When I’m getting ear fatigue, I find it tends to be too much going on in the like… 600-1000Hz range. I like to sweep with an EQ on the master bus to find what’s bothering my ears and then either cut it there, or cut it in the offending instrument(s.) Those guitars are slammed. I kind of like the pumping effect, but it begins to be grating after a while.

Sweet. Will check that out. Definitely do NOT want people getting ear fatigue. I’ll start with less compression and see if that has any overall effect and then assess the eq.

I’d also be interested to hear what references you were using, if any, or a song that you really like in this genre.

I have posted the two main references above, one for vocal, drum and overall compression feel, the other for the bass sound.

Thanks again!

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#12

Just a suggestion if you’re open to it … if it wouldn’t conflict with your plans to release an EP, it would be cool to have tracks or stems for an informal or formal remix competition here. I don’t know if the forum head honchos are up for any kind of mix contest right now, but Andrew (Coldroom Studios, prev fHumble fHingaz) recently released an album and posted tracks for one song here for us to mix. I think he may post tracks from some more songs. It’s not even a contest, just available to mix. As soon as I heard your song and wrote some comments I thought it was something I would enjoy taking a shot at mixing and see what I come up with.

Edit: Here’s Andrew’s thread, he linked to the project he posted on the Cambridge site:

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#13

Just wanted to say I liked it. Powerful attack. Your voice is pretty sweet for this tho. Like to hear a little more vox snarl. congrats

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#14

Love it! Just listening to it on crud speakers at work, but it sounds killer. Sounds like a mixture of AIC, Big Wreck, Soundgarden & Karnivool. :+1:

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#15

Just a suggestion if you’re open to it … if it wouldn’t conflict with your plans to release an EP, it would be cool to have tracks or stems for an informal or formal remix competition here.

Yeah man! I’d be honoured. I suppose I just contact fHumble (not sure I can call him anything else after all this time!) in regards to that?

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#16

Your voice is pretty sweet for this tho. Like to hear a little more vox snarl.

Ha! Yep, the bane of my vocal existence. I can get by for what I want on guitar etc… but vocally I’ve never been able to get any real snarl…not for any length of time or intensity anyway. I’ve resigned to that fact and now don’t really push it, sticking with what I can do.

My singer in my band recently asked me to sing more backing and supporting vocals on our recordings as he said my voice had a “Brian May like smoothness” to compliment his aggression and grit. Whilst this is a severe disservice to Brian May, I know what he means.

Part of the idea behind this project was to do what I love without regards to genre smashing and to stick with what I can do without “wanting” more than I can appreciably handle. Otherwise the thing will simply never get finished because it isn’t “right” compared to what I want or hear in my head.

I will forever appreciate those who can “SING” with aggression and maintain feeling and tone.

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#17

Love it! Just listening to it on crud speakers at work, but it sounds killer. Sounds like a mixture of AIC, Big Wreck, Soundgarden & Karnivool.

Thanks man, that’s huge!! In the second song on the EP, there is a deliberate end guitar line that is a homage to the late Chris Cornell - very soundgarden like!

thanks for listening and the super sweet comments!

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#18

Yes, if you need some info on how to do it, ColdRoomStudio (Andrew) who you just responded to above. What he did is get his tracks up on the Cambridge mix site and just created a thread here with a link to it. Or you could probably just link to a Dropbox or something, any link that goes to a cloud storage where the tracks can be downloaded. I’m guessing they don’t want to host those large files on this site directly.

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#19

Fortunately, I can change my nice voice to rough when I need to. I am 70 and not too skilled. It would be easier and less risky for friends sake not to ever talk about ones vocal. I put one on the forum called dark side that I even surprised myself that I sounded scary. I do think any comment , however minimal, is better than nothing at all. You DO have a nice voice :slight_smile:

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#20

Thanks Feaker,

Yeah, I’ve tried several times and I think I just don’t know the physical technique, as I either cant last, tiring my voice, or can’t hit the pitches anymore. I do enjoy harmonising though. Funny though, my higher register “feels” comfortable, but on it’s own sounds not so good. With my normal register and below though, I quite like how it sits together.
In this song, the verse harmonies are literally autotuned and run through a vocoder so it does not really count. The harmonies in the chorus and bridge are real though.

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#21

Had another listen to the mix on my studio speakers. Still sounds killer… One thing that is missing is long-term dynamics. Eg: at 1:39 I wanted the mix to get bigger, but it just stayed the same.

Try this: Set the volume/density you want for the “biggest” part of your mix, then work backwards, automating the volume feeding into your final compression/limiting chain, so that the mix jumps just a tad in volume each time you want it to get bigger.

In terms of eq: The mix needs a little more sub below 50hz, cut a little around 80hz, cut some around 180hz & 400hz; do a broad boost centred at 1200hz and try a hefty shelf boost around 10k. That should improve clarity without losing oomph.

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#22

I listened a few more times to that intro. I think it might be the kick drum that’s bothering me. It’s like it has 2 attacks. My theory is that the compression is bringing down the attack at first, heavily, such that when the tail comes in and the compressor lets go, it sounds like another attack. It’s not something I noticed with the rest of the mix in play. And it could only be bothering me because it feels like heavy processing, and an average music listener would have no idea. :woman_shrugging:

That first reference track you posted is so dense. I couldn’t listen to that for very long. So… maybe take my opinion with a dash of salt lol.

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#23

Yeah… I was thinking Jerry Cantrell meets Ty Tabor… or something. Cool.

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#24

Hey Dan,
I’m really enjoying this song! It has a big grunge vibe, and like some of the best of that era this is excellent song writing. I love the way melody of the main vocal hits some unexpected notes that somehow fit in (don’t ask me about the music theory - probably something mixolydian or whatever - but I like it!). A hint of Beatles in there, indeed.
I’m listening on my laptop speakers so can’t seriously comment on the technical side. The pumping compression obviously has its place in this music but maybe just a bit too much. For instance: I noticed in the intro at around 0:43 that I was trying to work out if I was listening to a purposeful guitar/ drums riff or a compression effect. I assume the first, in which case it might come across better if it didn’t almost coincide with the pumping effect of the compressor.
Like every one else: I love the way the synth comes peeping out from under the guitar riff all the time, even on laptop speakers there’s a real feel of 3 D in there. I also like the way you put a lot of movement in your guitars, I guess with panning the delays?
Is the orchestration some sort of Meletron? It’s hard to judge the stereo field on laptop speakers, but I’m thinking it might be interesting to try and further widen the orchestration in relation to the (already wide) guitars - maybe only in parts.
Would love to hear the other 4 songs :clap::clap::clap::clap::clap:

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#25

Had another listen to the mix on my studio speakers. Still sounds killer… One thing that is missing is long-term dynamics. Eg: at 1:39 I wanted the mix to get bigger, but it just stayed the same.

Thanks mate! I normally do a little automation on width and volume between sections but I don’t think I have in this mix. I’ll have a look and adjust like you suggested.

I’ll experiment with your suggestions (and some of the others) and repost soon.
Thanks again.
Also, Stan suggested using the song for a future mixing comp or just a mixing challenge. Thought I’d check with you first. Let me know what I need to do if you want to run something more official.

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#26

That first reference track you posted is so dense. I couldn’t listen to that for very long. So… maybe take my opinion with a dash of salt lol.

All good. I’ll take your opinion on board regardless. Yeah, it’s an interesting mix. They just released another album a month or so ago and it has almost the identical sound so I guess that’s the thing they are after.

The kick double attack thing may well be that crushed double track so I’ll pull that back and see if that helps.
Thanks again.

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#27

I love the way melody of the main vocal hits some unexpected notes that somehow fit in (don’t ask me about the music theory - probably something mixolydian or whatever - but I like it!).

Thanks Aef.
I’m not great with musical theory either so anything you said in that regard would be lost on me anyway! :smile:

Like every one else: I love the way the synth comes peeping out from under the guitar riff all the time,

Yeah, that is done using Boz’s Big Beuatiful Door plug, which pulls the volume of it down and up when instruments are playing (I can’t recall if I trigger it from the guitars or vocals or both). It can be done without the plug but it is an amazing one stop shop that has little need for complex routing and effects chains.

Is the orchestration some sort of Meletron? It’s hard to judge the stereo field on laptop speakers, but I’m thinking it might be interesting to try and further widen the orchestration in relation to the (already wide) guitars - maybe only in parts.

The orchestral sections are UVI orchestral suit. The panning is a little bit of an issue as it defaults to orchestral panning like a real sound stage. I have not dived into it enough to know how much specific panning you can do but it is not as easy as it should be I believe.

Would love to hear the other 4 songs :clap::clap::clap::clap::clap:

Thanks!! They all have similar qualities but are also quite different. If I’m honest, I’d say that Like an Omen is the best one of the lot. But I’m still happy with the others too. Thanks for the nice comments.

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