Lockdown re-worked; your thoughts please

Re-working of a tune I laid the foundations for during UK lockdown. Mid-paced EDM/electronica with some old samples, swirling pads and keyboard stabs. Penny for your thoughts…


I would use the choir during the whole song, not only in the second part after the break. The first part is a little bit empty, the choir is the missing piece. The break is a little bit long, it’s like the end of the song, especially because of the vinyl slow down effect. I would change it, I think it doesn’t fit. After the break you could add some more stuff to achieve more variety. Besides of that good song, I like the instrumentation and the balance.

OK, cheers for the input, TNT. I just added that slowed-down effect this morning and, first time using it, was quite pleased. It is maybe somewhat in the wrong place though. I was finding my songs sounded really flat out of little computer speakers (I write and mix using headphones), so I started doing some FX (light compression, EQ, reverb) in Audacity and it does seem to improve things. It’s a learning curve.

Ok, you’re looking for some mixing and mastering stuff. If you want to improve your mixing and mastering skills you shouldn’t use Audacity to add some effects, instead you should improve the mix in Renoise or whatever you’re using with the right tools and methods. Check this. I’ve listened to your song again at home through my studio headphones and through my common hifi speakers. It’s very boomy, you should clear all the unnecessary frequencies in every single track first. Once you’ve done that you can adjust the volume of the instruments (I would recommend mono mixing), apply some parallel processing stuff and finally finish the mastering. Don’t forget the limiter in your master track. :wink:

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@TNT is giving you good advice here. Use a high-pass filter (a nice clean one like the butterworth 4 or 8n in the digital filter dsp) to take out the low frequencies that compete with your kick in your bass and main synths. try to have one sound carrying a specific frequency range and everything will sound a lot cleaner. sometimes cutting 200-500 Hz with eq helps clear the mud, too. I’d also consider sidechaining the kick to a bus compressor for gentle pumping ducking on your synths. I think it would help the track breathe a little more, and also help clean up the mix. The mix is pretty quiet, too. which is not necessarily a bad thing, but all things being equal, a louder track will sound (usually) better, unless it’s just smashed to shit, but then again there is a LOT of hyper compressed/smashed/overlimited music getting a lot of play out there…
the melodic composition especially is nice. I like the laid-back 90s vibes. reminds me of early warp records tracks. AE & artificial intelligence series from back in the day.
Not sure about the tape stop… might make more sense 2/3rds or 3/4ths of the way through instead of halfway…

my .02

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I like how it sounds, it’s a kind of soft ambient-trance, that’s flowing.

Just at the end of the break you should add a reverse cymbal or anything else to announce that the track will continue, seems a bit like a cut when it come back.

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Thank you for the time you’ve taken to give this advice - much appreciated. Yep, I’m influenced by early Warp and Platipus material. I basically never learned how to mix. When I used to do tracks firing Midi to outboard synths I used an 8-track mixer and was more attuned to the frequencies. Really I’m just learning Renoise in very occasional spare time, and either forget how to do things or don’t know how. I’ll try to incorporate your advice and see how it goes. Cheers.

Yeah, I’m basically making the tracks with the sounds I program / edit in Synthmaster 2.9 and not really doing much EQ in Renoise. I’ll have a look at what you said, and do some delving into the finer points of wrangling my frequencies into a more cohesive product. Thank you very much.

Good point - in fact that keyboard swell somehow got reversed and I kind of liked it, so I left it, but I’ll try a bit more tinkering. Thank you.