Robot Push Key - 20111212-20111217

A new piece, distorted as usual. Kinda trippy as usual.

Instruments: DSI Tetra, MFB-503, Yamaha RX21, MicroTonic VSTi. Effects: Boss MT-2, Boss SE-50, TC Electronic D-Two, Korg KP2, Alesis AirFX.

Any feedback on mixing/mastering is welcome, I always struggle with that.


After some feedback I did a second mix: Robot Push Key - 20111212-20111217

Update 2:
Third version: Robot Push Key - 20111212-20111217

Update 3:
And here’s a fourth version: Robot Push Key - 20111212-20111217

i listened to it several times and from what i hear it sounds like there’s just too much sound compressed into a tiny space. even tho i hear some reverb it sounds very centered. for example at 1:45 you almost can’t distinguish the snare and the two hats from the rest of the sounds. they are kind of underwhelming in comparison, maybe even some cut off at the top? are they part of the distortion?

around 4:00 it gets extremely messy and it sounds like you put even more snares and hats into the mix just to get the mid/high-frequences louder which works to a certain extent but it creates much more noise than anything else and it still sounds muffled and forced into a corner.

keep in mind that this is very subjective! if i’m wrong please correct me.

i’m personally very careful with distortion, i never use one distortion on multiple channels if they cover a lot frequences except for an effect. in your case i’d rather use multiple distortions and adjust them individually or only use distortion on the sounds that i really want distorted i.e. only the kick and the synth. snares and hats could be spiced up with a little compression. also for me distortion doesn’t mean it has to be the loudest in the mix, i just want the raw sound/texture. in your case the distortion takes over the whole mix, making it sort of unpredictable and you lose the ability to fine tune the individual sounds. unless that’s what you want.

Thanks for the feedback!

The biggest problem I thought I had was low frequencies from the kick, toms and the DSI Tetra crossing. Used an EQ in the mastering to take care of that best I could. As I use mostly hardware and record it in stereo it’s hard to make any changes to the mix, I have to redo the performance, which I did once because I wasn’t happy with the first mix, it was even more muffled.

While mastering I thought the hats and high frequencies was too loud so I brought them down a bit, maybe a mistake…

As for the distortion, I kinda like what happens when you run several instruments through the same pedal, how they effect and sometimes cancel each other out. But it’s true than one mono distortion pedal makes the mix a bit centered. Maybe running pretty much all of the instruments through the distortion was a bit over the top. It works well some times, but usually used with more minimal sound, like Haus Arafna or Pan Sonic.

Maybe I’ll have another go at it… we’ll see.

Yes, this is exactly what’s so great about distortion, the way you’re using it. To explain in graphical design terms the sounds are bleeding into each other.

I like the track, the beats and the sound. But I have to agree with Mandulin that the distortion is a bit over the top.
The track in your signature has a more balanced mix, almost perfect to my (non-golden) ears.

Thanks! I also think the track in my signature is better mixed. This one is harder. I think I will look at it again and see what can be done differently.

Added a Boss OS-2. Hehe, adding a distortion pedal to get a clearer mix. :)

Seems to work, but I get quite a different sound… think I have to rework the arrangement and breaks a bit. I’ll post it when finished.

pnuk isnt dead! :yeah:

nice work!!!

So I did a new mixdown. I didn’t rearrange or change very much. Some of the bleeding and feedback stuff of the distortion pedal was lost or turned out a little different, so a few good details were lost. But I added a some new things, I like the part around 4:00 much better now. I tried adding a bit more stereo width as well. Thanks for pushing me, I’d might have settled with the first mix. I really don’t have “golden ears”.

Let me know if you think it could use more cowbell, equalization or something…

I went for a third version. I missed some of the feedback and bleeding effects of the distortion in the first version, so I did some rewiring to be able to send to both pedals at once… while trying to keep frequencies balanced. Let me know what you think?

very, very nice! cant, help, but personally i really prefere the first version. maybe not perfect mixing, but i love the raw and dirty tekno-soundsystem- vibe

Haha, you are not making this any easier… because I kinda feel the same way.

I realized I had removed the very thing that got me started on this track… the toms and kick through the Metal Zone distortion, and the way they blend. Had to try going back a bit, closer to the sound of the first version.

Here it is, the fourth version:

So…you have been “all hands on deck” for this latest version? It’s really great, captures the energy of the first one, but sounding less dirty/muffled.

Reminds me of the process I went through with one of my recent tracks. I uploaded three different mixes here, and finally decided that the last one was an improvement over the original.
Mixing is hard and you have to remind yourself to take breaks :slight_smile:

Thanks! Hopefully this was the final mix, I still feel quite happy with it. Also, I have started working on a new recording, so levels, EQ and effect sends on the mixer is now different. That’s a big drawback when doing it the analog way.

Yes, I’m totally aware of hearing fatigue. I have done some crazy mixes, and wondered what the hell I was thinking the next day.

As far as my ears goes you’ve nailed version 4. Lovely warm texture. Captivating minimal progression. Uplifting.

the 4th version is definitely better than the others! now you can even make out the subtleties of the distortion.

Thanks! Happy holidays!