I'd love some feedback on a few recent tracks I've recorded. For context, I made myself some rules for this project, which include the following: I will track, mix, and master everything by myself at home, I will release at least a track a month, and most of the elements will be sampled or synthesized. This is necessarily a lo-fi endeavor and I don't want to fall down the rabbit hole of endlessly tweaking mixes, as that would be contrary to my mission here. But I do want to get the best sound out of what I have.
I started out with only an MXL 991 mic, an Alesis io2 interface, and some cheap Sennheiser earbuds. I do all tracking and mixing in Reaper and all of the synths and drum machines are various free VST plugins that I downloaded. That's what I used for the first song I released, First World Problems.
Next I bent my spending rule a bit with a slight gear upgrade -- I got an MXL V67G mic and some AKG 240s. I needed a new pair of general-listening speakers anyway so I also got a pair of Audio Engine A2s which I check things on at the end. Then I made this cover of Video Games by Lana Del Rey:
I just released another original tune, Ingenue, made with the same setup:
Any feedback on the mixes is welcome, bearing the above context in mind. I'm particularly interested in any simple tricks for making the tracks louder and more propulsive/dance-y; I've messed with a few different mastering EQs and limiters, but there's obviously room for improvement. Thanks!