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Production on Kanye's "all of the lights" Condenser Microphones
Old 13th January 2011
  #31
Here for the gear
 

[QUOTE=scepstral;6211213]I completely hear where you're coming from. I certainly didn't intend to make this thread more about my version than the original. At the same time it's hard to relinquish attention when you're just starting out as a musician. We did the cover because we're fans of kanye and wanted to pay tribute to the fact that he's done tremendous things for hip hop. If we were making covers of rihanna+eminem and BOB + hayley williams (i.e. radio hits), I think you'd have a point, but this is the first time we've ever worked with anything that's not our own, and the only thing we've released since our first album.



Dude I'm a huge Kanye West fan. That's what it comes down to. Just wasn't sure if his music was being used for some other sh!t. Some might say "why should I care?" Well, because being a fan means supporting and caring about that person and the art they create and how it's being used. You made yourself very clear and again I apologize if I was out of line or miss the whole purpose of this thread. Congrats and best wishes to you and your group.
Old 26th January 2011
  #32
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PRPS's Avatar
just saw this youtube video...

sounds real good

Old 27th January 2011
  #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PRPS View Post
just saw this youtube video...

sounds real good


That's DOPE.
Old 19th February 2011
  #34
Old 21st February 2011
  #35
Gear Maniac
 

Great job Ken!

It sounds great having real brass instead of samples. It just brings life to the record more than any samples ever could. The piano sounds great at the beginning too.
Old 21st February 2011
  #36
Gear Maniac
 
newyorkbrass's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Darm View Post
Thanks for the link repost! Here is an additional note... a high note...

Old 21st February 2011
  #37
Gear Maniac
 
newyorkbrass's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tempest19 View Post
Great job Ken!

It sounds great having real brass instead of samples. It just brings life to the record more than any samples ever could. The piano sounds great at the beginning too.
Thanks! I agree it brings a lot of life to the tracks. Over that past year we have seen a major shift towards adding live brass to indie projects. Many people model the song using samples/midi brass, and when they are ready for the final mix they re-record the midi brass as live brass. This makes it very affordable even for small budget projects.
Old 21st February 2011
  #38
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by newyorkbrass View Post
Thanks! I agree it brings a lot of life to the tracks. Over that past year we have seen a major shift towards adding live brass to indie projects. Many people model the song using samples/midi brass, and when they are ready for the final mix they re-record the midi brass as live brass. This makes it very affordable even for small budget projects.
That sounds like a great solution!

Something about the texture and tone of those horns in the beginning of the record just sound perfect to my ears, as well as the space around them. I love the melody they're playing too. You did a great job!

Do you normally record up at Kens spot?
Old 21st February 2011
  #39
Gear Maniac
 
newyorkbrass's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken Lewis View Post
WOW, that is super hot. great job guys, and girl. sounds like alot of work went into that, its amazing when you hear a song that inspires you that much to put in that much work covering it and flipping it to be your own. Should have subtly flipped the Rihanna part as well.

I dont know about the rest of the song, but the horn section is real. French Horns, trumpets, trombones, bass trombone, flugel horn, some sort of small tuba, not sure what the specific name of it is. I think we put down a bass trumpet part as well. The main horns in the intro are french horns and the arrangement builds, evolves and changes from there.
I also added MIDI flute, piccolo, and i think either english horn or oboe

One of my favorite songs i've worked on in my career. good to see its inspiring others. Kanye is a visionary. I do know that this song evolved tremendously from original conception to completion, over the course of months. I think Rihanna was one of the last things added to it. her parts and her voice were added after i heard what i thought was the final version. I sat down to watch the Runaway movie and when this song came on, my jaw hit the floor when Rihanna's part came on. I thought the song was great before i heard her on it, and she took it to the next level.
Yes we recorded a few different trumpets, bass-trumpet (!), flugelhorn, a few different trombones, bass trombone, French horn, and a BBb contrabass Tuba (tuba can be seen here). We recorded each instrument in 3 different octaves and also did some extreme ranges, tony played a double alto trumpet D. With the french horns we did a massive "wall of horns". We recorded into multitude of microphones and room angles. and man - I havn't driven down the New Jersey turnpike with that many brass instruments ever, lol! You gotta pictures Ken and Ken's assistant dragging it all up to the studio without hitting all the grammy plaques and gold albums...

Ken, I am not sure who is the visionary Kanye or Ken Lewis... there is definitely some magic lurking in the walls of your studio.
Old 21st February 2011
  #40
Gear Maniac
 
newyorkbrass's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tempest19 View Post
That sounds like a great solution!

Something about the texture and tone of those horns in the beginning of the record just sound perfect to my ears, as well as the space around them. I love the melody they're playing too. You did a great job!

Do you normally record up at Kens spot?
Thanks!

For Ken's projects, I recorded both at Ken's and also have recorded over the internet (he sends audio - I return brass audio) at my studio. My studio is geared and tuned to record brass with a high turnaround time. Hardly any sound check needed any more I might as well have "Tony" "Kenny" "Ron" "Don" "Dave" "Danny" etc etc markings on the preamps instead of DB to save time...

For this recording however, I even brought my ribbon microphone with me and we used it as part of the microphone array. This project was a high secrecy/high caliber work - obviously ken did not want any portion leaked even by mistake. Any leak could be catastrophic to his business. I didn't tell my closest friends that we recorded this project until the release.

As for the sound, I like the shift away from the 1970s-big-hall-ping-pong-delay brass sound and into a tighter small space more 5-foot-behind-singer-intimate in-your-face brass. It is also finding its way into the live performance bands that are now incorporating live brass musicians. I mean come on - how cool is a trumpet/trombone/sax section on stage?
Old 21st February 2011
  #41
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by newyorkbrass View Post
As for the sound, I like the shift away from the 1970s-big-hall-ping-pong-delay brass sound and into a tighter small space more 5-foot-behind-singer-intimate in-your-face brass. It is also finding its way into the live performance bands that are now incorporating live brass musicians. I mean come on - how cool is a trumpet/trombone/sax section on stage?
Absolutely - Kanye and Rihanna did this song during halftime of the all-star game last night and (after looking past the poor TV mix) the live brass was awesome.
Old 22nd February 2011
  #42
Gear Maniac
 
newyorkbrass's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by scepstral View Post
Absolutely - Kanye and Rihanna did this song during halftime of the all-star game last night and (after looking past the poor TV mix) the live brass was awesome.
Your serious? "Live Brass"? I'd give it 50-50 that they actually connected those microphones to the board, lol...
Old 22nd February 2011
  #43
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by newyorkbrass View Post
Your serious? "Live Brass"? I'd give it 50-50 that they actually connected those microphones to the board, lol...
Fair enough- I just remember that the drums weren't the same as those on the album so I assumed they were re-creating everything.
Old 22nd February 2011
  #44
Lives for gear
 
Alex Niedt's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by PRPS View Post
just saw this youtube video...

sounds real good

Sorry, but this is awful. Horrible intonation. Poor chord balance. Mediocre arrangement at best. This sounds like a first rehearsal by amateur players. It's interesting to hear, but far from good, IMO.
Old 28th June 2012
  #45
Lives for gear
Yes, I'm raising this thread from the dead!

I was listening to this track (the original Kanye version) and it really hit me how amazing the drum tracks were. It's so dirty and grimey that it almost sounds like a real kit being played and looped. Whatever it is, it is pretty punchy for how nasty it sounds.

Anyone have any info on the actual DRUM production? One-shot samples? Vinyl loop? Real kit recorded dirty and then looped?

Hey scepstral, you said you recreated the drums almost exactly like the original. Details!? Really trying to achieve some drums similar to this in a production I'm working on. Cool cover though. Looks like it was fun.
Old 11th August 2012
  #46
Lives for gear
 
Filthrill's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ISayItLikeItIs View Post
Hey Mike,

What do you use for mastering? All ITB? Which plugs?

Thanks and props!
I too would be very interested to know exactly what Mike uses for mastering. Mike did u completely leave us Slutz?!!? We hurtin' Mike we hurtin'. I think I read somewhere that Mike was tired of MEs ruining his mixes so he started mastering his own stuff to make sure it's done right. Wow.
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