I just uploaded the xrns file for the Natives competition.
If anyone wants to have a look I’m really curious how the mix can be improved and if I made some major faults. I really had problems to make the mix louder. I testwise uploaded it to landr and what came out was much(!) louder without distortion. So I wonder how this can be achieved.
you should put up a soundcloud or also upload an mp3 to the forum download, so ppl can hear your track, I’m talking about the soundcloud version you submitted to the compo.
the process is called “mastering” and landr does it automatically. if done right, it will make a song sound much more refined after it is mixed, and also louder if you wish to. It is a multistage process and involves lots of tuning by ear or by complex rules, and requires a decent monitoring setup.
how loud you master is just one parameter in the process that can vary. try to get a loudness meter VST, I use the free LUFSMeter. I would say…don’t go for too loud songs, it will kill dynamics of the tune making it sound heavy but flat. I decided to target around -7 to -9 lufs because I want my music to be punchy on home stereos or good headphones. the ultra loud like -4 lufs are rather reserved for high volume playback, where the punchyness isn’t required and snobs want the bass to use full potential. really, don’t go with the “loudness war” while you are beginner, just try to make things sound good and well defined first. who wants to listen, will just give the vol knob a little nudge. platforms like youtube, soundcloud etc. will normalise to a certain loudness anyways, so making ultra loud will not result in louder playback at the audience, just loss of dynamics.
your tune is too sharp in the highs I think, btw. I also did the mistake, making it too sharp at first, in the same freq range like 4-9 khz. It can be painful to the ears to listen to such music loud, or even harmful.
I uploaded a mp3 of the song. Thanks for comments on loudness! I’ll remix the song in the next days … One guy also said, that the kick is not loud enough. My monitoring setup is good (Neumann KH80) but my room is not treated (in addition I sit in the corner of the room) and therefore the speakers were much too expensive. The highs sound good on them, but on the cell phone they sound too high.
I know it is difficult to find the perfect solution of monitoring and getting to know it well. Also there are some tricks to enhance even more, like using filters to listen to sounds in focus on frequencies, or using spectrum analysers and scopes well. I am no pro, I dabble in my own solution using 2 pairs of headphones and shitty 2.1 speakers so I get a rough idea how it would sound when placed in a room with speakers.
yes, your bassdrum lacks low bass strength, it mostly has upper bass content…that is well, and will make the low bass seem even stronger on a good system. ah what do I say, my own tune is ,muddy in bass and I am also unsure how well the amount is. longing for treated room with nice sub, you only know the right amount of bass on a good system that you know well and that you can feel with the body. my headphone solution isn’t perfect for me yet I think. though good headphones can present you image of sound without random dips or resonances. getting good open headphones, and also having a nice bassy headphone, was turbo boost to my development in sound quality, and I can work deep in the night without disturbing neighbours.