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Everything posted by ectogemia

  1. I think maybe I heard some clipping... maybe... wait... edit: not clipping.
  2. Way ahead of you. Been a huge edIT fan since he was just another face.
  3. I'm just gonna randomly spill some tips all over the thread here because I'm in a noxiously boring and long class which I have no interest in. Let's begin! A quick solution for thinness in some situations is a little reverb. A lot of NES soundtracks were re-released by the parent companies with a little reverb on the master bus to gel things together a bit. If you do it, keep that wet knob conservative and be sure to raise your low cut to at least 400 Hz, if not another 100-150 Hz higher. Remember that reverb is just a synthetic series of sound reflections based on the input sound. That wet reverb sound has a frequency spectrum, and the bounds of that spectrum are defined by the low cut and high cut knobs. The low cut knob is essentially a high pass knob. The high cut knob is essentially a low pass knob. So you have to be SURE you are raising the low cut knob to AT LEAST 400 Hz, but preferably a little higher, because the most muddy frequencies are below about 500 Hz. Adding in a bunch of mud via reverb isn't going to help clarity. Low-cutting out the muddy reverb frequencies and then adding a bit of verb to the master bus can add some glue to the mids and highs. This isn't a terribly common technique, but it's out there for really dry mixes. A somewhat more technique-sensitive way to add a little thickness is to add some compression to the master bus on the order of 2-5 db of compression and makeup gain to taste (though I find that adding about 1 db less makeup gain than gain reduction I'm getting from the compression almost always sounds great. Be sure to have conservative attacks and releases. A longer attack of 45 ms+ to allow all the transients through and a shortish release of 100-200 ms to avoid overcompression should get things sounding a little thicker. If you don't already have a compressor with a gain reduction meter on it, I'd get a hold of one. It's not necessary, but it's certainly a useful number to have access to, especially if your ears aren't well-trained yet. That seems to be a super common problem with compressors. A lot of people just don't really understand what they do, why they're used, or what compression really sounds like. Being able to tie the sound you're hearing to a number measuring the amount of compression occurring is crucial to forming a solid concept of what you're actually doing when you're compressing, in my opinion. Another solution is to add a little delay to instruments which won't cause lots of mud from echoing. So don't add delay (in most cases) to things in the muddy frequency range below ~500 Hz. Usually, delay goes best on leads. It thickens out the spectrum because as your lead plays through the melody, the echoes from previous notes in the melody shine through all over the spectrum of each note played by the lead, so there's a strong saturating effect in the general frequency range played by the melody. Again, be conservative. It's VERY easy to overdo delay. As a starter, the feedback knob controls the number of echoes, whereas the amount knob (the name varies: input, amount, depth, etc.) controls the volume of each echo. Experiment with these two knobs to get the right saturation of echoes. You can even add some stereo width by using the stereo offset knob (read up on the acoustics of stereoization via stereo phase offset to open your mind to the awesome word of how flangers, phasers, chorus, and stereo delay units work) or by adjusting the panning knob and changing the delay type to ping pong delay. But these are band-aids for a greater systemic problem. Picking good samples/synths which work well together is the best way to end up with a good final mix. It's harder than it sounds -- much harder. But you can't have a full-sounding piece if you aren't filling out the frequency spectrum properly, so although you're afraid of crowding the mix, you still have to make sure you've got enough going on to make it sound full. Darke's tip about lead, percussion, bass, accompaniment is spot on as the basics you need in most cases to have AT MINIMUM a full-sounding mix. Everything has to be in the right octave as well, so experiment with that, especially when layering pads and leads. Another random tip is that a lot of people over-EQ things. I used to be guilty of this. Now, I NEVER make an EQ adjustment unless there's a very specific goal in mind. Some goals include things like notching a bass where the kick/snare fundamental is, notching a pad where the snare fundamental is, boosting the high mids on a lead by a dB or 2 to add some presence, boosting the highs on a snare to add splash, getting rid of a weird partial with a surgical cut, etc. A lot of people boost and cut like madmen. They know that something needs to be done to the sound, but they don't know what. It'll take time to get to the point where you can make really well-informed EQ decisions, but if you're aren't trying to get a grasp on how to EQ properly by struggling through doing it the right way and instead you're just waggling bands around, your ears will never develop. All that band-waggling often ends up cutting essential frequencies across several instruments, so things end up sounding thin. And as a last tip, very generally, it's a good idea to boost with smooth eq curve (a wide band width) and cut with a sharper eq curve (a narrow band width). That's not always true, especially with respect to cuts, but in most cases when you're cutting, you're either high/low passing or you're notching something to let the fundamental of something else shine through, usually in the muddy frequency range in the lows and low mids. Boosting with a notch/narrow band width often sounds really artificial and weird, but it does work in some situations, like emphasizing certain narrow partials like snare fundamentals or whatever else. Yeah! edit:
  4. Fellow MMA fan? I'll teach you all about stereoization if you'll be my MMA buddy. Please do this one thing for me. I'm so obsessed with the sport, but none of my friends have ever been that in to it. I NEED AN OUTLET :O
  5. So if Obama is the commander-in-chief of the koopa troopas, that makes him King Koopa. The birthers were right... kind of...
  6. You need to check your facts. Top Man was in Mega Man 2. And studies show 50% of all men in homosexual relationships are Bottom Men.
  7. Here's a man who knows what he's talking about. Music is about being creative. If something sounds repetitive, then do something creative to make it sound fresh. There are an infinite number of things you could do to keep things sounding interesting, and it's up to you to listen to music which you find to be particularly creative and interesting and dissect the techniques those artists use so you can employ similar methods or novel methods inspired by those you've heard. So to answer your basic question, I learned to vary compositions by listening *very* critically to tunes I love and looping interesting bits again and again until I understood what I was hearing. It gets easier and easier to do this as your ear improves and your production and compostional toolboxes expand until you can easily come up with creative flourishes and variations on your own. And as always, I'll plug improv as perhaps the best tool to develop your musical sensibilities. A lot of my ability to be musical comes from playing short-ish phrases on piano I came up with and altering them in any number of ways again and again to keep it sounding fresh. With this technique, like Alex said, don't think; just do. And Alex's music just so happens to be something I listen to and analyze to figure out cool techniques ;o so give his stuff a listen if you haven't already.
  8. I followed what you were saying. I was asking Alex about what he meant
  9. Everquest was the tits before SOE got ahold of it and diarrhea'd out like 15-20 expansions within a few years. Unless they've decided to steer closer to the original formula, I can't say I'll be too hyped up about EQN, and that totally sucks since classic EQ is easily one of my favorite games. Buuut there's always hope. right?
  10. Maybe tone the abrasiveness down by like 99%. It's original, so it can't count as source usage... Yes, just about the whole tune. The Cold Man "part A" melody is used essentially verbatim rhythmically and melodically (with some added harmonies) via the distorted jazz organ both before the brass kicks in and once the muted trumpet takes over. The entire outro is a reharmonization of the verbatim Cold Man "part B" melody as played by the muted trumpet. It's high passed, but maaaybe not enough. Pretty much everything I did in this remix was experimental for me, and yeah, I couldn't seem to get the scratches to sit quite right. They do sound a little too thick now that you mention it. As for how I wrote the scratches, I just cut up and repitched and rearranged a bunch of random scratch samples I have. It was a good idea, but I quickly ran out of samples compatible with the song, hence why the scratch patterns get boring. Also, percussion isn't my strong suit You're saying I should low pass the trumpet slightly to let the splashy cymbal come through?
  11. It was for effect. A light rendition of the melody for a bit followed by a heavier set of instruments finishing up the phrase is a pretty common technique to create impact through contrast. I'm guessing you're not a fan of that technique based on all your critiques, but I really like the contrast To each his own and stuff. Thanks for the feedback, guize.
  12. Not at all for my track, but I made the high-passed crazy synth in Ben's Literally Metal Pirates track. He did the remaining 99.5% of the track and did it well.
  13. Wanna expand on the harmonic excitation? I've fiddled with the one I have in Ozone some and I know it's basically just a multiband distortion unit used to saturate frequency bands, but I'm not sure how best to apply it in mastering situations. EDUCATE ECTO. His name is Robert Paulson!
  14. Oh, yeah, I agree, but that being said, high quality sounds out of the box are *necessary* for the best possible production value. The point I was really trying to make, though, is that some people don't have access to high quality samples or synths, so by default, they'd be at a disadvantage in such compos because there's only so much you can do with free sounds, at least as far as production and polish goes. That's not to say you can't make amazing music with free sounds -- just look at Phonetic Hero, Theory of N, Hylian Lemon, Ben Briggs, etc. -- but for a hypothetical compo FOCUSING on sound quality, it's sort of a bum deal for free-sound types. And as an aside, I know my track isn't as loud as a lot of others, but that was intentional to preserve the dynamics of the muted trumpet solo. Didn't wanna compress my track too much and poop all over that automation and velocity business I spent so much time on ;o I guess I could have bused everything else but the trumpet and compressed it a bit, but meh, dunno if that'd sound very good. Just turn up the volume a bit on my track and enjoy the beauty of unsquashed transients
  15. Yep, yep, and more yep. If you have bonus fat, step 1 in fitness is to lose it before you start adding muscle.
  16. I know a guy who got in a fight once. Don't make me call the guy I know who got in a fight once.
  17. Slap on a bunch of top-quality samples and synth patches, and it won't be much of a contest D: But there are mastering and mixing contests out there fairly similar to what you're talking about where you're given poorly mixed music, and you have to fix it.
  18. True, true. As I said before, 'sall about tipping points between the axis of arrangement and production. Commensurate quality of each is ideal. but production is super important, youguise Ladies and gentlemasters, I'd like to point out that we just successfully completed a debate on the internet without slinging a single shit-word or ad hominem premise, a first for all of mankind. Remember where you were this day, because people will ask about it years from now. On that note, KgZ, you and I need to have a talk about production ;o I have much to learn.
  19. This isn't the Olympics, man, and we're grow'd up guys. We can choose our own criteria for voting. Not to mention the Olympics require a numerical system of "objective" scoring so that the competitors have a VERY specific set of skills to work towards. By rigidly defining the voting criteria of this compo as arrangment-first, that forces the artists to focus on that skill if they want to win instead of focusing on all facets of musicality, and I don't think anyone here believes that's a good idea.
  20. Yep, it's the same nearly every day. PWO meal = 1 lb 100% grass-fed ground beef, 1 lb organic sweet potatoes, 3/8 cup of hemp protein Then throughout the afternoon and evening, I just sorta cram down 4 scrambled eggs cooked in butter, steamed broccoli and grass-fed raw cheese, about 3/4 lb of microwaved potatoes with several tbsp of grass-fed butter in them + various seasonings, a large bowl of raw, grass-fed yogurt with 2 bananas and some berries. On rest days, I skip the sweet potatoes and potatoes and add in kale + bacon cooked in the bacon fat and braised in white wine. Shit is so good... I also throw in whatever else will add in a few more calories on rest days without making it very carb heavy as I reduce my carb intake on rest days for fat-loss purposes. And I'm not saying organic and raw and grass-fed to be a snob but because it's important to eat top-quality foods as they're more nutrient dense and in line with our biochemistry, not the mention the dangers of pesticide residues and GMO foods. I also don't really measure or count anything except the hemp protein. I just eat a lot. That's the idea
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