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Hannes Keseberg - You Know Better (V3 is for contest and review)
Hi Absolem! Well, this is the first version where someone's adjusted the tempo, and interestingly enough you've slowed it down, rather than speeding it up as I might have anticipated given the 'mainstream single' mix brief. As a general thing, I'd normally be reluctant to do any time-stretching at mixdown, because time-stretching always introduces some artefacts, but in this instance I don't really hear any untoward side-effects, so I'll judge the end, not the means! Some thoughts:

* Good low-end balance between the kick and snare, but I think you could afford to have a couple more decibels of energy below 80Hz. In general the kit sounds great, in fact, although maybe the sidestick could be a little louder in comparison to the main snare level.
* Lovely vocal sound, although it is a touch sibilant and there's still some low-frequency variability compromising the solidity of the singer's balance position, especially during the Choruses where there are those switches to falsetto.
* The dubby effects are helping to give a great sense of depth, especially in contrast with the upfront lead vocal. Blend is also excellent, with everything feeling like it's well glued together. There would still be some more bonus points available if you automated the effects a little more to enhance the long-term mix dynamics, especially for the lead vocal.

I have to say that this is one of my favourite mixes so far from an engineering perspective -- it basically ticks all the boxes for me in that respect. However, I suspect this competition will be won by entrants who can not only achieve such a convincing technical vision, but also manage to bring in a dose of 'wow' factor that will make them stand out from the crowd when judging time comes. Your effects use is a definite strong point in this respect, but I reckon there's still scope for you to make a bolder statement somehow, perhaps by engaging more with the multitrack's inherent arrangement issues or getting more assertive with your automation.

Thanks for uploading your mix -- and bearing with me waiting for this critique!
Thanks a lot! It's very helpful!
V3 is spacey and inventive and well presented against a solid core. The only thing that gets to me is the lyric of the song just doesn't seem to warrant the wild spatial effects. Though they are very well thought out, engineered and mixed, for me it just seems against the grain of the song. If this had some political context it might work but I'm not so sure for a love ballad. Don't get me wrong, I like what you did, but will the artist appreciate the bent you've taken?
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