Tesgin is a Long Way (from) Home - final tweaks

Not done yet, but gettin’ close. Goin’ to bed now!


A quick listen for any big things, not in my “studio” but on my referencing speakers…

Good solid start! Sounds great. No big issues that I’m hearing, just a couple of nitpicks is really.

  • Lead guitar needs something - this is the first thing that is heard on the song and it needs to come in and make a statement and grab the listener. Rather than fumble through trying to describe what I’m talking about, I’ll just point you to @Jerze’s mix. I think he nailed it. I’m struggling with it and will probably try a few more things if I can get a chance to work on it.
  • Organ is a little loud for me during the chorus.
  • Vocals sound really good but good use some minor mud cleaning up. Maybe carve out some low mids from the reverb?
  • The high vocal track at 3:49 is too loud and needs to come down.

Nice one!

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Thanks, Mike. Yeah, I didn’t have enough time to do much with any of the “band” instruments. Most of what I’ve done was with the drums (that kick was tough!) and the vocals. Oh my goodness, he was all over the place, wasn’t he! Someone else also commented on that. Quite the dynamic range. I did a LOT of editing there. Primarily clip gain adjustments.

I’ve never done anything with the vocal rider kinds of plugins. Waves, of course, has one, and Hornet Plugins has an inexpensive one as well. TBProAudio has a couple, one for vocals, and one for vocals and other instruments.

I’m curious if anyone uses these things or could recommend any of them. I never thought I’d need one, but looking at how much time I spent on this guy’s vocals, it seems it’d pay for itself pretty quickly, if they do indeed do the job well. Thoughts?

In any event, thanks for the bash. I will fix ALL of those things! Hope to be able to work on it tonight. Much appreciated.

Me too definitely!

100% MAutoVolume! It’s literally on every single mix I do - at least once, often more. Even though I love this plugin, I will go in to a vocal track and level it with clip gain first. It goes pretty quickly once you get the hang of it. Then, whatever you use afterwards whether a compressor or “auto volume” thing has to work a LOT less and is much more transparent - especially on this vocal track!

dude, nice job… yes, the reverb needs the standard treatment (high pass, low pass, mid band-pass ( @ 1kHz) Low mids seem to be too forward, as previously said. You can also copy the vocal track and trigger the reverb with ONLY the above eq choices (high pass, low pass, mid band pass). It will also lower the overall vocal reverb level in the quiet parts, a good thing IMO…

Keys need to be mono’ed and panned hard left or right to my ear, there is too much weirdness in the Leslie for me doing the hard panning. Maybe a little flatter (less splatty) snare in some loud places may help too (in the quiet parts, make the snare a touch duller / fatter).

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Okay. Try this.

Change log:

  • Polished lead guitar
  • EQ’d voc and verb for mud removal
  • Automated vocals
  • Fixed vol on organ
  • Tweaked balances of “band”
  • Tweaks to verb
  • Repanned piano

This sounds really really good! You’ll need better ears than mine to find something “wrong” here. Great job!! :slightly_smiling_face:

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PS. I noticed you added the heartbeats at the end. I don’t know how picky they are going to be about the “no production just mix” rule, but I’d hate to see you disqualified because of a little thing like that. It DOES sound good though! :+1:

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Yeah, I was wondering about that too. I really like the added heartbeats, but I was thinking I’d need to remove them prior to submitting. Thnx.

this is nice! I wish I could get stuff this clean. nice balance with the bgvs.

I miss something sub harmonic. Like maybe the bass could be a little more low end, so it sits under the kick.

The vocal sounds great, But I wish it was a little less crispy… maybe less low cut on that as well?

Nice job! this was a fun song for everyone to do.

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Hey, Tesgin .

Sounds like you are really getting control of your monitoring. I actually dialled it down a fraction… and gave it a little fatter ass plus its a touch wider…

Top job dude.

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Nice, Vaughan. :slightly_smiling_face:

So to my ear, amongst other things, it sounds as if you took my file and did some kind of mid-side processing to bring the mids down? Is that basically what widening is?

Also, when you talk fatter ass, is that about the subharmonic that @Tmasterp was talking about? So what did you do there and what did you use?

Last, what do you mean by “dialed it down”?

yes, I added a little compression but as you had smacked the low end pretty hard already, this became quite THE THING…

I dialled down the brightness so it wasn’t as sibilant.

yeah, I was expecting mermaids and sea serpents, pretty disappointed now maybe.

  • fat@ss DOES mean adding bottom end/subs, for sure. I used compression around the 40-60Hz area with a cut slightly above that…

Good ear, Taylor. @vtr also commented on dialing down the vocal brightness.

So here’s my latest tweak to the mix. My change log:

  • Tweaked main vox: lowered the high shelf a tad, added a little low end by scaling back my HPF, tweaked gate
  • Widened the stereo spread in band instruments (not drums) just a smidge
  • More LPF and HPF on BGV
  • Fixed the heartbeat, per contest rules (but I like mine better!)
  • Added subharmonics and fixed bass EQ

Let me know what you think. Contest ends on the 30th. If this sounds good to y’all, I’m thinkin’ I’ll go ahead and make this my entry. Will have some time tomorrow (Monday) to make last minute tweaks if needed.

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Thank you for the review! Now I am reviewing your latest mix. A bit more country-ish than what I normally listen to, but it is a pleasant song. Vocals, instruments, and drums are well performed. Nice melodies. I listened to a bit of the very first mix, and this most recent mix sounds significantly better. This most recent mix sounds good enough, that I can’t think of anything to improve it; it sounds very good to me. :slight_smile:

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This sounds great @Tesgin - well done! Good luck!

Thanks, Aaron. All for the input from this forum. Thanks, all.

Thanks, Mike. Much appreciated.

Ugh. I’m sorry for posting this again. Compulsive me. A few things were buggin’ me.

I thickened the BGV and tried to blend them a little more, and treated the guitars a bit more and brought them up in the mix.

So my question is, should I just have left it alone? Did these changes help or hurt? So annoying that i keep going back and tweaking, tweaking, tweaking. It’s like a dog-gone OCD thing. I dunno. I “think” this made it better, but IDK if it’s worth going back to stuff. Am I the only one that does this?

Oh crap, I thought this was an original. Yes, this is a nice song. We used to call these “belly rubbin songs” when I played out in our band. I heard a few lyrics In the first of the song that didn’t flow well, but that wouldn’t be on you. You have honed your craft exponentially in the last months. Good for you

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Hi Tesgin… yeah, well you have to know when eventually to leave well enough alone and move on, but to be fair, this is how you learn…

Overall, I think it sounds very good.

What I hear at present is a guy who is pretty obsessed with achieving clarity and detail in his mixes. That is what you have a laser focus on at the moment. That’s all part of the learning process, and sometimes you have to take something slightly too far before you realise that you’re starting to “throw the baby out with the bathwater”.

The thing is, while low mids and mids can be evil demons of muddiness and boxiness, they can also create a lot of power and warmth in a mix. Learning how much is too much or too little is the key.

If I tell you now that I think you’ve gone too far with pulling out mids and low mids, and as a result the mix sounds a little too clinical and a little lacking in midrange power and warmth - and you go and adjust it based on that opinion - In the process of chasing pleasing someone else’s ears, I think you’ll miss the value of learning from your own experience.

Another thing I can hear is the low end of the kick (and to a degree the snare as well) causing the whole mix to “pump” and modulate the levels of the vocals and other instruments slightly due to how the mix compression is reacting to the amount of level coming from those low end elements.

I would say leave it as is, move on with something else, and come back to it and listen in 6 months time. I think you will hear it more objectively then. Suffice to say now that you have achieved a clear and polished sounding mix. Nice work!