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How to make the most out of your mix: tips from Irresponsible Recordings

Blog by Irresponsible Recordings under Recording & Production

Irresponsible Recordings are predominantly a management company for a roster of producers but, as well as that, they offer an online mixing service. So, seen as they’re armed with top equipment and more experience than they’ll admit, here they are with some essential tips for mixing, a little info about what their service entails, PLUS a rather tasty discount they have available especially for Unsigned Guide readers.  
 
Mixing Tips
 
  • No matter what you have at your disposal for mixing, the one ever-present constant is by far the most delicate.....your ears. Take a break regularly, 5 minutes with fresh lugs is worth an hour with tired ones. If you’ve been honing in on the release time of a compressor strapped across a drum buss or slaving over a reverb tail so its juuuuust right, it’s really hard to adjust to listening to the bigger picture. So, have a cuppa and give your ears a short rest. Even if you’re hiring a mix facility it really is 5 minutes well spent to keep the most critical part of the mix chain in good nick.
     
  • Now, democracy is a wonderful thing but mixing by committee can be a real hindrance to a good mix. Of course a mix should be a balance of all the carefully crafted parts of a recording but sometimes certain elements need to come to the fore for the benefit of the whole and someone has to take the creative reigns. It’s a bit like baking a cake - you don’t use all of the ingredients in the exact equal amount to avoid offence. That’s why, when we’re mixing for you, we ask for references. It’s important to know whether you’re after a Victoria Sponge or a Lemon Drizzle...... 
     
  • Cool, so with both tips above we’ve introduced tea and cake, how nice! This tip is a little more nuts and bolts. If you’re struggling with sitting a vocal in a busy mix - it either feels like it’s sitting on top or totally immersed - try a little side chain compression. For instance, perhaps you have a busy guitar part that requires a prominent place in the mix to give it power but you’re struggling to fit it with the vocal without compromising the job either does. Try this; insert a compressor across the guitar buss, (no point in telling you to use an 1176 if you haven’t got one so anything with a side chain option should do.) Take a pre send auxiliary feed from your vocal track and patch it to your side chain feed on the compressor. Start with sending enough vocal aux to the compressor to facilitate a drop of 2db to the guitar when the vocal is present (the guitar will return to its original level when the vocal isn’t present.) With a little careful setting of the compressor’s attack and release times to avoid an obvious pumping effect, a careful ducking of the guitar around the vocal should help gel the two.
 
Irresponsible Recordings bring the facility of a Neve equipped mix suite and ears that have sold over a million records in territories around the world to you in an easy to use and cost effective package.
 
Why? - If you’ve either recorded your tracks in a studio or recorded them with your own recording set up, getting a mix to bring your tracks together in a way that realises the end product you envisaged is hard. In short, we’re here to make the tracks sound like the record you set out to make.
 
Who? - Our mixing scientists have mixed records in just about every style (perhaps check out our producer roster) and are still inventing styles of their own. We ask you to provide some reference tracks so we know whether you’re aiming for Pixie Lott or The Pixies, we encourage you to give as much guidance as possible. It’s your project and we assume you have an idea of artistic direction, what we bring is the experience and equipment to get it there.
 
How? - Everything is done online. You upload your individual stems, along with your references, (there is an easy to follow guide on our website to help with this). We download the tracks, apply our magic and return a mix to you. We ask you to have a good listen and if there are any tweaks required we include one mix revision to make sure we get your mix to exactly where you want it to be.
 
During the months of May and June, Irresponsible are offering a 20% discount off the published price per track for Unsigned Guide subscribers. Just get in touch with Irresponsible to claim your saving.

Tags

irresponsible recordings, online mixing service, music mixing, recording services, music recording, demo mixing

 

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