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About This Multitrack - Mike Senior - 01-05-2012

You can find the multitrack files for this project in the 'Mixing Secrets' Free Multitrack Download Library.

Before posting a mix, please read The Three Commandments!
Please post your mix as a new thread, rather than as a reply to this sticky.

Here's some more project info you might find useful:
  • About The Raw Multitracks:
    • The programmed drum parts comprise four mixed rhythm loops as well as separate kick, snare, hi-hat, cymbal, and cymbal-roll tracks. The separated samples are, for the most part, carefully sync'ed to the sounds in the loops, so you shouldn't have the inconsistent phase problems you get on some electronica multitracks.
    • The single bass track is again tightly edited to sync with the kick.
    • 26 stereo synth and sound-module parts make up the bulk of the backing 'filler', as well as providing some transition momentum betweem sections.
    • Five stereo acoustic-guitar loops all include a certain amount of effects processing, but sound great for the style, and each is playing with a different sound or line, so they provide quite a lot of scope for arrangement variety.
    • There are 15 electric guitar parts, which break down as follows: a stereo rhythm loop with printed-in tempo delay; a series of downbeat chords, comprising one stereo chorused track and three pairs of dry mono tracks for dual-miked amps; six mono layers of downbeats for the chorus sections, complemented by a similar sitar part; and a single mono feedback-based transition effect.
    • A single lead-vocal track is provided, which has been nicely comped and is supported by a pre-processed stereo submix of multitracked doubles.
    • The backing vocals are all presented in submix form with effects, but the 10 stereo files do at least still give you a fair degree of independent balance control over their different musical lines.
  • Challenges You're Likely To Face:
    • Many of the pitched sounds in these multitracks (bass included) don't seem to be as well-defined in terms of the decay of their amplitude envolope as they are in terms of the attack, which means that achieving the punchiest possible sound will take some extra processing and/or editing work.
    • There are lots of interesting synth sounds in this arrangement, but not a tremendous amount of mix real estate to fit them into.
    • The layered guitars offer the possibility of textural variations, but there's little inherent build-up or variety in the arrangement as a whole, so you'll probably want to get busy with your editing and/or automation to get the best out of the resources available.
    • The lead and backing vocals need some high-pass filtering to reduce pops and general subsonic rubbish making its way into the final mix.
    • The printed-in effects processing on the backing vocals restricts your sonic options somewhat.
  • Some Mixing Tips: Although this isn't a mix I've attempted myself, here are some ideas that immediately presented themselves to my mind:
    • The groove here is great, but I think the overall production would perhaps benefit from a bit more sonic contrast between the tightness of the rhythm and the lush spaciousness of many of the synths, guitars, and effects.
    • High-pass filtering is your friend as far as many of the tracks here are concerned, given the importance of a clean low end, but be careful it doesn't rob the kick and snare sounds of their lower-register 'oomph'.
    • I'd probably look at trying to edit the ends of the bass notes a little shorter to get the groove to bounce a little more lightly. By the same token, the ends of many of the synth, guitar, and backing-vocal decay tails could be closed down on the beat to lend the beat some additional muscularity, as well as to announce some of the section boundaries more categorically.
    • Speaking of editing, because so many of the synth and guitar parts repeat so often, I think there's a lot that could be done with editing to allow each of them more individual time in the sun. As such this multitrack would be a great test-bed for some of the arrangement ideas I discuss in Chapter 7 of the book, I think.
    • In arrangement terms, it doesn't feel as if there's enough variation to support the long verse, prechorus, and chorus sections, so in each case I'd suggest looking to introduce some kind of textural change at the midway point of each of these, in order to create more of a sense of build-up through the production as a whole.

If you have any other general questions about this multitrack, just reply to this post and I'll see what I can do.

RE: About This Multitrack - Highmix - 02-03-2013

Is there any chance of getting the raw parts rather than processed stems please? I really wanted to work on my bk vox fx this mix but sadly the bulk of the work has been done. Are there reasons (a&r, management etc) why they (or in the industry in general) wouldn't give out raw backing parts? Thanks.

RE: About This Multitrack - Mike Senior - 02-03-2013

(02-03-2013, 05:37 PM)Highmix Wrote: Is there any chance of getting the raw parts rather than processed stems please? I really wanted to work on my bk vox fx this mix but sadly the bulk of the work has been done. Are there reasons (a&r, management etc) why they (or in the industry in general) wouldn't give out raw backing parts?

I'm not sure it was a deliberate thing by the artist to try to make their work less 'dissectable'. I reckon it's probably more to do with the practicality of uploading all that audio -- a stereo stem takes a lot more storage space than all the raw files. You could try contacting Georgia Wonder direct to see if you can get hold of the raw files -- their web site it listed alongside the files. I'm happy to host them if they don't want to host them themselves.