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What kind of mic does this?
Old 11th December 2011
  #1
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What kind of mic does this?

Hey guys, Im very into the strokes lately. and i realized julian cascablancas' vocal recording is like, really distorted and like behind a veil but yet still sits in the mix well.

so like this
vocal starts at 00:51
and its more obvious at 1:20
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RzO7IGWGxu8&ob=av2n


im just wondering is it a special kind of mic? or is it effects?

thanks
Old 11th December 2011
  #2
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audiogeek's Avatar
 

Effects.
Old 11th December 2011
  #3
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what kinds of effect do you reckon it is?
ive tried overdrive on ableton live but it doesnt seem to do even close
Old 11th December 2011
  #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hellraiser_666 View Post
what kinds of effect do you reckon it is?
ive tried overdrive on ableton live but it doesnt seem to do even close
try duplicating the vocal track, use fairly heavy bright overdrive on one of them, and have it quite soft in the mix.
Old 11th December 2011
  #5
Gear Head
 
Chris White's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by hellraiser_666 View Post
what kinds of effect do you reckon it is?
ive tried overdrive on ableton live but it doesnt seem to do even close
There are many ways to skin a cat; and all of them will get the ASPCA on your doorstep.

Anyway, it's a very lofi demo video with extremely bad sound; not just lacking in bass, but full of MP3 compression artifacts to the point where the whole track "warbles" and rings in a watery way. It sounds like 64-96 kbps mp3 compression. Ugh... They probably did this to avoid giving out a high quality version for free on YouTube.

However, from what I *could* hear from the video before I had to turn it off due to my ears bleeding profusely, was that one way of achieving it is to set up a bandpassed (or highpassed if you want more highs) distortion as a send effect on the vocals, and mixing it in to taste.

Update: I decided to seal the deal and check out a higher quality version of the song online, and yes, it's a highpassed vocal with distortion mixed in heavily. It's actually a very grating, ear-piercing distortion because it shrieeeks like mad whenever the singer hits sibilants. You would do well to de-ess BEFORE the distortion send, as well as EQ the return from the distortion send to make sure the highs don't pierce people's ears.


Have fun!
Old 11th December 2011
  #6
This sound can be easily duplicated with a Shure SM58 plugged into a very inexpensive P.A. system, from the 1970s. The worse its state of disrepair, the closer to the actual sound you will get.

Some folks were known to use a razor blade and put slices in the speaker cones of their speaker enclosures to enhance this sound.

There may be other ways to achieve this sound but I know only of ways to avoid it as I have been trying to get as far away from it as I can for as long as I can remember.
Old 11th December 2011
  #7
Gear Nut
 

If you ask me it has both a high pass and a low pass. (that might be why the ss sound weird and high-midrangey). I love using this king of effect on a drum aux, together with reverb and heavy pumping compression.
Old 11th December 2011
  #8
Gear Head
 

fair bit of his vocal sound round the net, from memory he plugs straight into an old peavy amp which is micd up by some sort of neumann.

check this thread out
The Strokes vocals
Old 11th December 2011
  #9
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Thanks everyone for the replies

i dont know why, but their whole lo-fi roughness makes me like their songs even more haha
im thinking of doing the same for my band's first demo ep
Old 11th December 2011
  #10
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I also read somewhere else his sound has come from overdriving an LA2A compressor. I imagine for the strokes it isn't always done the same way, and it isn't hard to achieve, no matter what gear you're using..
Old 11th December 2011
  #11
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Can someone please explain in more detail for the highpass distortion technique??
Old 11th December 2011
  #12
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AnthonyRochester's Avatar
 

Duplicate the vocal track. Apply a high pass filter to remove all the lower frequencies. I reckon a corner frequency at around 200 -300hz should work. Then add a distortion/overdrive effect. Blend with the original vocal track to taste. Quite simple.
Old 11th December 2011
  #13
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thanks anthony!

I tried that and this is what i came up with

Old 11th December 2011
  #14
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The funny thing is, Julian's voice sounds a lot like that even unamplified. Don't get me wrong, it's not naturally "distorted", but he sings in a way that just about any additional distortion/grit will get "that sound".

The first record was a mic straight into an amp, but I'm sure they've deviated from that quite a bit since then. You really just gotta sing that way.
Old 11th December 2011
  #15
Gear Nut
 

On my phone so no time to check out the recording but often a slightly distorted tone on a vocal is from using shure's green bullet. This mic was originally meant for harmonica but some people use it on vocals or even as a room mic for effect. A recent hit where it was used is pumped up kicks during the verse. That I know for a fact had very minimal effects on it aside from the green bullet
Old 11th December 2011
  #16
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audiogeek's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Terce View Post
On my phone so no time to check out the recording but often a slightly distorted tone on a vocal is from using shure's green bullet. This mic was originally meant for harmonica but some people use it on vocals or even as a room mic for effect. A recent hit where it was used is pumped up kicks during the verse. That I know for a fact had very minimal effects on it aside from the green bullet
"minimal" is a subjective word, but that song has quite a bit of distortion, compression, delay and reverb on the vocals. So, if you call that minimal...
Old 12th December 2011
  #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evangelista View Post
The funny thing is, Julian's voice sounds a lot like that even unamplified. Don't get me wrong, it's not naturally "distorted", but he sings in a way that just about any additional distortion/grit will get "that sound".

The first record was a mic straight into an amp, but I'm sure they've deviated from that quite a bit since then. You really just gotta sing that way.
to be honest, not to bash julian's singing but i dont think his singing live is very good. i mean i still love his music and performance
Old 21st February 2012
  #18
Gear Head
 

Flagg Mic will get the Strokes crooning-type sound. You can pick one up here: Flagg | Home

Old 24th February 2012
  #19
Gear Addict
 

soundwise this could also be a copperphone:
The Copperphone - Placid Audio
Old 24th February 2012
  #20
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Fletcher's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris White View Post
There are many ways to skin a cat; and all of them will get the ASPCA on your doorstep.
Best thing I've read on this site in ages!!

Thank you Chris White!!
Old 25th February 2012
  #21
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Chris White's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fletcher View Post
Best thing I've read on this site in ages!!

Thank you Chris White!!
Haha, glad to hear!

Some funny microphones in this thread. The telephone one is hilarious. I kinda want one, just to make the crowd to go "".
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