Mastering For Local Acts

I’ve decided to do some free mastering for local bands, so as to build a portfolio… and I just got my first submission, which I promptly finished, and have now posted on the interwebs for feedback. The player on my site allows you to compare between the mastered and unmastered versions…

I’m wondering what you guys think of my mastering job (not the song itself) … so if you feel like hearing the difference mastering can make on a standard stereo mixdown, feel free to give my special flash player a spin and let me know what you think :)

Nice job, you have definitely put live into it…

Sounds awesome, good luck with the project.

Nice demonstration, simple and very effective :)


I’m hoping to get some feedback from MMD ;)

Nice flash player. I like how you can switch (with a smooth fade) at any given point for instant comparison. Learn something every day in this place.

Yeah, I’d also like to hear MMD’s feedback…

Personally, my listening habits these days are bombarded by what the world over the internet has to offer and often times if I’m not hooked in the first few minutes, I jump ahead to listen to its progression, then I calculate its replayability usually by context and if it fails 2 out of those three, then on to the next, no matter how good the mix is.

It sounded like the pop hit radio station, not the college station…listening conditions: ear flap cap, headphones that came with my guitar plugged to my computer.

Do you plan on mastering for a specific genre ?

I remember going to a local pro studio and the house mixer was mixing various types of music, trying to build a resume as well so he could work major labels, at the time he was mixing about a 70 piece orchestra for a pastor or something, i forget, the music was forgettable too. He said he mainly wanted to do punk, pop punk I believe.

I don’t really care what genre I can mix/master as long as long as I can make some cash at it. I was definitely going for the “radio rock” treatment on this one, as it’s one of those tracks I could see hearing on the radio.

Sounding Lush Byte. Well done. :)

Interestingly, I think the original artist is going to be my biggest critic… he finally heard it, and was already commenting that it didn’t sound like I compressed it at all… which of course I did… I reduced the dynamic range from its original 18-16db (and more at times) to 10-12db, the early 1990s standard. I didn’t want to fall prey to the loudness wars, but it seems I just may if this dude wants it compressed even more. He didn’t even notice the stereo enhancements.

I spent a long time trying to figure out how to get flash to sync that shit properly, and it STILL falls out of sync if the songs don’t load at the same time. I’m so far disappointed with Actionscript 3.0.

 Excellent stuff there and nice job with the player. Hearing it side by side like really emphasises how the mastered version pops out with a superior sound.

I’m guessing that, that sort of thing happens a lot between client and ‘blacksmith’…“Well, I want a sword that can give me the world”, “The Excalibur wasn’t literal you idiot”.

Good luck in your future endeavours, I hope that you’ll work with clients whose minds and ears are open to your suggestions. :)

I’ve got another track up now… this one’s a bit harder… an instrumental metal track:

Wouldn’t mind some feedback on this one too

Not bad. although, it sounds a bit more rock than metal master. :) Maybe a bit too much mids, while metal music is more on lows and highs with low and powerful kick and punchy snare. You made mids dominant while pushing the kick on the background and making the snare flatter.

The mixdown had the cymbals splattered all over the top of the mix, way too loud… with the basskick amped way too high. I needed to flatten it down to prevent the bass from being so muddy… The bass guitar’s almost nonexistant in the original mix. This was a mastering job, not a mixing + mastering job. I’d’ve loved to have gotten my hands on the multitrack, but alas, I had none.

I listened to it when you posted it in #renoise and I was impressed with what you’ve come to from that original mix.

Ok, it’s maybe a bit “bright”, but when you do A/B check with the original mix, anything will sound bright, as the original mix is far from being balanced and it’s so muffled, like when you hear music from outside a club…

Honestly, I wouldn’t be surprised if one would think you made up the “original mix” from the mastered one :P And I’m NOT saying you did ;)

I’m no metal fan so I can’t tell if it’s more a rock than a metal mastering, but your work on that track really impressed me.

Thanks Den! You maed mah day!

Great job(s)… :guitar: