In part one of this series I began a mix with Sreyashi, a woman from India with a real talent for singing and lyrics. Sreyashi said the rhythm interested her. We continue to work together on “Together” to get the track as good as it can be. Some of the upper drum parts were clashing and somewhat uneven. The consensus of others who I asked was about 50/50 when they listened to the track rhythm with some saying that they like the track and others not so much.
At one point I stripped to entire drums track away and made another drum track. Once again the consensus was split. I liked both tracks, yet both tracks needed work. In the end we settled on the first version and decided to rework some of it and try to make the track sit better in the mix.
I kept the mix in Studio One 3 Professional. To re work the track I loaded Addicitve Drums 2 into the mix and removed the prior drum tracks. I copied and loaded the same midi patterns I had before into AD2 inside Studio One 3. I then decided to edit some midi parts in the tracks. Instead of splitting individual tracks I decided this time I would control the drum mix with the mixer inside AD2. This proved to be very helpful in making better drum adjustments with less complexity. Since none of the drum audio was printed I could continue to refine the mix in the AD2 mixer.Using the reverb bus I was able to give the drum mix a present place in the mix.
To better mix the cymbals I resorted to another drum program inside of Kontakt called 90’s drums. I pulled the faders for cymbals and high hats down in the AD2 kit and used the 90’s drum kit only for the cymbals patterns which were locked to tempo.
I added some looped percussion tracks during the quiet break. One track was a shaker and the other a hip hop loop. I decided the JRR Vocal plug in was a bit too up front on Sreyashi’s voice, so I deleted that plug in and added another plug in by waves called CLA Vocals. This gives her voice a warmer sound. It also allowed me to give her very mono voice some stereo spread which added some body to it and opened up her sound. I loaded an EQ and lowered the 3K range 2db. This helped to take some of the excessive bite away.
I doubled the bass originally created in Rapture with a secondary bass loop positioned underneath the bass attacks in Rapture. Since Sreyashi’s voice is the main part I wanted to keep it up front, but not so much it over powers the rest. I believe I’ve struck a happy medium here.Her voice might be too up front for some people, but I like the way it’s developing.
In the beginning I used a few of the plug ins native to Studio one. Many of these instrument specific plug in chains have multiple plugs inside of them. I discovered in some cases I was ‘over mixing” using unnecessary plug ins and adopted a more naked approach since some of those presets made the mix sound worse. I think you really need to be selective when using some presets and determine which work best or if they are needed at all.
Further adjustments were made to the volume automation. I exported to 16/44.1 wav. Files recorded on 48/24 wav. Imported the master into Sonar one more time in order to add a little more volume using the Adaptive limiter in Cakewalk Sonar. I feel like the track is now close to completion.
Undoubtedly there will be a few more changes, but I feel as if we’re getting close now!