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For a newbie
Old 3rd April 2004
  #1
Here for the gear
 
JZ_FM's Avatar
 

For a newbie

Hi Charles,
I'm interested in what you consider basic mixing knowledge when it comes down to mixing for rock/hard rock. I know there must be a million things you know, but as far as the basic tool set of knowledge as it applies to mixing drums and guitars and bass and vocals...I'd like you opinion where to start and what to avoid such as where to place each instrument in the mix, when to compress/when not to compress, etc...

Hope this isn't asking too much.

I'm currently recording my band's first EP.
We are a 4 piece with a singer/guitarist, lead guitar, bass, and drums. Its mostly heavy rock.

Thanks!
JZ_FM
Old 3rd April 2004
  #2
FX smörgåsbord user
 
Charles Dye's Avatar
 

JZ_FM,

First let me say that I love talking about this, and rock mixing is my favorite kind. But rock mixing is also an immense topic. And I promise, I'm not being flip when I say, I could write an entire post just about the snare. To start could you pick one area (or instrument) that you are particularly interested in? Then we can move on from there.

Also, I did discuss a lot of the basics in my column Hard Disk Life that is archived on the digi site. (The first column is on the bottom of the page and they're in reverse order.) Have you read any of them? If so did it help and are you looking to for additional info?

If you haven't, check them out. Much time and care went into the writing of those columns and I really did try to share as much information as I could about mixing in them. They will hopefully be helpful. If you have read them, then let's continue the discussion.
Old 3rd April 2004
  #3
Gear Head
 

Ok.. Bass Drum

Hey Charlles..

Maybe you could start with your technique for bass drum..

I have "played" with a lot of different mics and mic setup, but my handy old distressor usually saves the day for kick drums..

thanks

-Brad
Old 3rd April 2004
  #4
Here for the gear
 
JZ_FM's Avatar
 

wow

Your column is EXCELLENT.
Yes, let's start with drums since this is going to be the first things we record.

My drummer is a heavy hitter. He is a solid pro rock drummer that plays with lots of different folk. His style is very minimalist, but he takes greatly from hip hop and power rock like Dr.Dre and the Beastie Boys to Rage Against the Machine and Black Sabbath.

I really want to capture him on "tape". He has an incredible sense of rhythm and plays his best LOUD.

His kit is a 5 piece custom with 3 cymbals and a hit-hat.

To me, the drums are a huge part of our band's sound...that and my voice. So where do we begin?

-JZ_FM
Old 3rd April 2004
  #5
FX smörgåsbord user
 
Charles Dye's Avatar
 

JZ_FM,

Thanks for the complement on HDL. Have you read the one about drums: Every Mixer Tells a Story--Drums Set the Stage?

Also, to be clear, the drums are recorded already and your asking about getting drum sounds in the mix. Right? Do you have a rough mix of a particular song that we can discuss? Could you post a link to it? The direction to take the drum sound is influenced by the instruments around it, the style of the music, and the feel of the song itself. It would be great to here it first and then answer your questions so I can be specific with my suggestions.

Thanks.
Old 5th April 2004
  #6
Here for the gear
 
JZ_FM's Avatar
 

Thanks for the information you posted about tracking Crease's drums. I really like the tonal balance you achieved between each piece of the kit.
I PM'ed you a link to a song we are about to record drums for. ( I would make it publically available but our website isn't ready for the amount of hits this would generate.) This is a live recording of the band besides the vocals which I tracked at home.
I could really use some ideas about how to track our drummer, especially what kind of mic's and pre's you recommend.
We plan to track him in a studio, but we really don't have much $$$ to shell out...so its going to be tight.

Anyways, thanks again,

JZ_FM
Old 5th April 2004
  #7
FX smörgåsbord user
 
Charles Dye's Avatar
 

JZ_FM,

Got the file. Thanks. With your permission I'd like to post your mp3 here, so we can all discuss it and everyone can learn by exchanging ideas. You'll also benefit by hearing more than one opinion. Would that be okay?

You can also post it yourself if you like. You simply need to attach it to your post. Scroll down under the window where you type the post and there is an area that says Attach file:. Simply click on the "Browse..." button, navigate to your mp3, and select it.

Thanks.
Old 5th April 2004
  #8
Here for the gear
 
JZ_FM's Avatar
 

okay...


Here is goes...

not to be a jerk but this is

copyright 2004 neumena records

since this isn't released yet.
Attached Files

dead_weight_gearslutz.mp3 (1.35 MB, 219 views)

Old 5th April 2004
  #9
Here for the gear
 
JZ_FM's Avatar
 

any ideas Charles?

JZ_FM
Old 5th April 2004
  #10
Lives for gear
 
Mike Jasper's Avatar
I liked this quite a bit.

I think someone is going to suggest that the hihat is too loud and I think you should ignore that suggestion. It's unique and doesn't get in the way of the vocal. Works for me.

The overly-distorted vocal leading into the chorus was a tad over-the-top for me. Specifically, I think the word is "A-lone." And even more specifically, it's the "Ah" syllable that bugs me. But I might be too old.

Placing the kick drum wide right is odd to me. I didn't say I didn't like it, but it's odd. I always place it dead center, if for no other reason than it's nice to have at least one thing settled. Nice thumpy kick sound, though.

The guitars sound great. Big and ballsy.

BTW, I listen to mp3s through Sennheiser 580 headphones. A quirk in my system won't let me play them through the monitors.
Old 6th April 2004
  #11
Here for the gear
 
JZ_FM's Avatar
 

well...actually I should clarify.
This clip is a live rehersal with dubbed vocals.
We are planning on going into a studio very soon to record our music properly.

I was hoping for some suggestions about what kind of mic's, pre's, and things to look out for so when it comes time to mix the drums I have what I need.

What do I want to avoid?

What is a typical recording setup for a drummer like ours?

Should I follow Charles' method of seperating each drum and cymbal?


I know I'm green...but any words of wisdom would be very helpful to me.

JZ_FM
Old 6th April 2004
  #12
FX smörgåsbord user
 
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I've not forgotten you. I'll post tomorrow. Thanks for your patience.
Old 7th April 2004
  #13
Here for the gear
 
JZ_FM's Avatar
 

Charles,
I also have a question about recording guitars.
I plan to record my guitars at home using a Diezel Amplifier, a 2x12 w/ V30s, 2 SM57's, and a Chandler TG2.

I haven't been very pleased with the tone I'm getting and I think it has to do with my room. How much of a difference will it make if I throw my cab in a corner and pad the walls rather than have my cab just sitting in the middle of open space? I don't have a closet to spare...but I do have a 15x10 bathroom, maybe that would work too?

Do you have any specific micing techniques for heavy guitar?

Even with low gain settings, I'm gettting very muddy sounding guitars. Any ideas?
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