T's Wasteland Contest Entry

Okay, as I may have mentioned in a previous post this is my first mix project outside my own stuff. Also my first contest. I mixed maybe 95-98% before listening to the original and any members mixes. I went back and did some panning and volume adjustments and added some more reverb in spots. Which I went back and forth about. I’m going ahead and posting this today because I think there’s not much more I can do without letting others influence my changes and I wanted to stay true to my vision and be judged on that. So, here it is. If you like it great, if not no worries. I have a hard time find songs to practice my mixing skills and this song really hit me. The performance was really emotional and in turn I put my heart and soul into this project. Thanks again @Cristina hope you enjoy this one.

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0 voters

Quite like it, vocals are good.
(i love a lot the soft 2nd “should i be empty by now”)
Tonaly, sounds good.
Just to list the thing i dislike :

  • the back vocals send to the reverb is high, so lead has not enough verb for me (even if it needs less than the back vocals)
  • seems like you slightly panned the lead vocal to the right, there is no rule for it, but in this case i found it weird (personal taste)
  • the strings are cool, i probably 'd play it an octave lower
  • the solo is not enough in your face for me
  • cymbs are loud/too excited for me.
  • the ad lib moment fights with the lead vocals, maybe it should be 2db lower.
  • drums are a bit thin for me

In the end you did a good work. Congrats.


Man. OK, you totally drew me in in the first half of the song! This was one of the most delicate and introspective mixes I’ve heard. I really really liked it! A couple of minor issues - I agree with @Moa22 on the reverb. Just a little sweetening on the lead vocal would have put it over the top - a little barely noticeable verby polish and a little warmth. I think the BG vocals could come down in these initial choruses so she still feels “alone”, where you almost just “sense” them rather than hear them. (personal preference)

I agree too that the solo doesn’t quite “get there”. I’m not sure why or how you “fix” it, but it just didn’t work for me. Maybe it was balance issues? The yell seemed louder than the guitar solo, so maybe the guitar could come up? And maybe add some EQ so it cuts through the mix and has more bite to it. The 3rd verse seemed to have some balance issues too, like the main vox gets barely audible while the BG vox comes in very loud. So I really liked the first half, but thought the louder sections needed some work. This was really a great song to mix, wasn’t it? Good job!

PS. Check out this site for some multi-tracks: http://www.cambridge-mt.com/ms-mtk.htm

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+1 for keeping the vox dry and uplclose! For me it has always been the song before the mix.
. The message in the song is personal, you kept it personal and emotional.

not sure if the slight right pan on the main vocals was intentional or not, background vocals have a reverb that doesnt match the main vocals and it stands out. Not a big issue though.

love the added strings :slight_smile:
Great mix

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Nice, intimate mix. I found that the vocals were just a little up front for my taste. And i will add another vote to the need for more impact on the solo. Overall i found the mix to be enjoyable. Thanks for sharing.

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Another vote here for the backing box having too much verb.

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Wow, great comments so far, you guys really know your stuff. I have learned a lot for the short time I’ve been with the site. I think I mixed this song for me rather than the masses. Being my first mix I may have tried a few things that were not too favorable. I meant to pan the main vocals slightly off center. I wanted the vocals to be up front and I especially wanted the BG Vox to standout, I just didn’t want it to be that noticeable. My earlier mix was kind of dry and I can see know that I over compensated on the backing vocals. I mixed most of this before listening to the original and one of the things I learned was always have a reference track to go by and even a rough mix form the artist if you can so you have a directions to go. Again this site has a good solid group of people that I’m really learning from. Thanks all.

The main vocal is the biggest issue for me, It sounds kinda built up around the right hand side. Between the main vox and the main guitar, they’re really the two dominant elements (level-wise) for most of the mix which seems to take the focus away from the rhythm parts. Some more presence and punch from the kick especially would have been nice. In a complete 180 the main vocal drops right out for the final chorus. The treatment of you elements overall sounded pleasing, you just needed to work on getting a bit more balance.

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O man! only 10 votes so far. I must of done something really wrong. I think I may have the least amount of votes. :cry:

Hi Tsmsky69,
I’ve voted your mix a few days ago but didn’t get a chance to comment till now.
In fact all my thoughts have already been mentioned.
It’s a good mix in general. Nothing disturbing as I’m listening to it.
I really like the intimacy of the lead vox.
What I would do differently:

  • I find that the slightly panned lead vox don’t really add anything.

  • The strings in the 2nd verse could be an octave lower as the song is lacking in low end.

  • The kick could be a bit fuller and up in volume for the same reason.

  • Solo guitar needed a few dbs as well to really hit you as it is the climax of the song.

  • In the final chorus lead vox gets kinda lost when, IMHO, they should be on top of everything else.

Good job over all!
Good luck!

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@ManAbyss i quite agree, just not far from the same critics as me !


Vox are far too dry for me they sound a little disconnected ,very loud too

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Nice Strings, the vocal seems to the right and pretty compressed. I think you’re hitting the overall compressor a lil too hard! Over a nice mix, heard the pumping of the compressor a lot at the end.

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Nice and smooth, didn’t try to overcook the drums like a lot of mixes on here seemed to do. I would have added more reverb to enhance the sense of space, it fits the style of the song, and the artist’s original intent with her mix. But I’m really not someone who should be going on about artist’s intent. I would also move the vocal to the center, and if you did any vocal saturation I would turn it back. The vocal seems to be distorting a bit, and part of that is definitely the original recording. The best thing to do is to attempt to tame it as much as possible. Since the frequencies are in the high-end, I’ve recommend multi-band compression to many people to smooth out the rough edges of the top end of the vocal, it makes the thing really shine, and adds a new sheen of consummate professionalism that really gives the song a big boost.

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heard again on old samsung earbuds (terrible ones) - previous pass was done in AV40s, treated room

Mix translates nicely on earbuds, the right pan of the voice is less of a problem in the earbuds for some reason, slight pumping after chorus but thats about it.

addition of strings was still great! additional gentle percussion (in the beginning of the song) became evident on the earbuds in a good way, had missed that before. Nice touch!

Nothing else cropped up

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Hey congrats for being part of that contest. I really hope you had fun mixing the song and you tried things here and there so you get more confident now.

The artistic view you chose are very bold to me and it could work if the client would so. Why not after all.
But as you said, you did the mix more for you than for a listener with way different tools to hear than yours. For instance, say two people listening to your mix sharing earbuds: one get more vocal than the other…
Trying to make the song work while mixing in mono is very difficult but you create more separation that way. And it works also when you turned back in stereo.

Mixing-wise, I agree with previous comments
The only thing that was not mentionned is just before the solo, I found the drums very squashed and the crash cymbal sounds very odd to me.

By the way, strong job to me, very personal.
I now wish to listen to something revised regarding feedbacks and get a your work enhanced!

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