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OK, then... tone decisions... Help me out here...


Griffinator

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Spilling over from another thread, I've been futzing around with different tonal decisions on a particular song we're recording. Trucks suggested I take it to the forum, to have you folks offer opinions - so here ya go!

 

Artistlaunch's servers are a bit slow, so be patient, but...

 

my artistlaunch page

 

The clips are at the bottom of the list.

 

First one has a bit of flange in the mix, the other is drier. I've scrapped a number of other takes, but I may be able to dredge them up as well for comparison purposes...

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Both samples sound fine in isolation but which to choose really depends on the context of the piece. I would not want to listen to a flanged guitar throughout a 12 minute song but used on a specific passage it could add great contrast.

 

Do you have to record the flanged sound going in or do you have the option to add the flanger later during mixdown?

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I can definitely add it later during mixdown.

 

That's kinda what I was worried about - there are specific passages in this thing that warrant a raw, ugly guitar sound, and others that demand a more refined, yet still overdriven sound, and still others that fall somewhere in between. My struggle is that I don't want to get so wrapped up in changing tones that it no longer sounds like the same song, but using the same exact tones for each distorted passage is glaringly problematic as well.

 

I waited 8 years for a chance to record this thing with a band, and now that it's happening, it's stressing me out more I could have possibly imagined... :freak:

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Originally posted by Griffinator:

I can definitely add it later during mixdown.

 

That's kinda what I was worried about - there are specific passages in this thing that warrant a raw, ugly guitar sound, and others that demand a more refined, yet still overdriven sound, and still others that fall somewhere in between. My struggle is that I don't want to get so wrapped up in changing tones that it no longer sounds like the same song, but using the same exact tones for each distorted passage is glaringly problematic as well.

 

I waited 8 years for a chance to record this thing with a band, and now that it's happening, it's stressing me out more I could have possibly imagined... :freak:

There is definitely room for a few different tones in such an epic song.

 

If you can afford some time for experientation (and you waited 8 years so what's a few more weeks?) I would suggest recording with what you envisioned to be the best tone for each different part. Then after giving a few days to settle, listen to the whole song and check for perceived discontinuity among the different passages. If that is the case, then you can revisit your idea of the best tone for each part.

 

Keep in mind that a different tone can be as simple as adding a subtle effect or playing the guitar with the volume knob down to clean it up some, or doubling the guitar only in certain sections, or harmonizing a line, or... etc, etc, etc.

 

It will be the first time you hear your song with the full band: give yourself a chance to adapt it to the band format after you've listened to it for a while.

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Originally posted by Rhino Madness:

I would suggest recording with what you envisioned to be the best tone for each different part. Then after giving a few days to settle, listen to the whole song and check for perceived discontinuity among the different passages. If that is the case, then you can revisit your idea of the best tone for each part.

Or you could go the complete opposite direction: record the whole song with roughly the same tone and then listen for any section that begs for a different tone.
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Have you recorded everything that needs to be recorded to put it roughly together? I would record everything (without worrying too much about the tone, as long as its close.. i'd probably just have the gain to the setting you are comfertable with), put it all together... Then worry about perfecting each part after ive listened to the 1st draft "finished" article a few (a lot of) times. When you can hear it as a whole the changes you need to make will no doubt become so obvious you'll feel like kickin your own arse. That probably sounds more time consuming but in reality your not spending too much time on the initial recording and in theory shouldnt have to spend tooo much time re-recording as required.

 

But.. I'm not keen on flange anyway and the second clip has alot more back bone to it. But I dont know what the concept sounds like in your head??

 

EDIT: Sorry Rhino i skipped your post above mine, and you said what I babbled on about for ages in one sentence.

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The flanged tone sounded really cool, but Rhino is right with a 12 minute song you are going to need some variations. How the guitar fits in the overall mix is very important as well, flanging and effects can get lost with other instruments.
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Here, as in the other thread, I think the prevailing wisdom is to just get the whole bugger down first and then wrestle with it. You can afford to make FX decisions in the production stage because this is just your proof-of-concept recording at this point.

 

How do you play this when you demo it for your band? You have played this as a live demo already, right? Even just to yourself?

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Actually, the band as a whole has been practicing this for live purposes, and I'm really just using three fundamental tones for it, one compressed and clean, one with heavy distortion for rhythm passages, and one for my leads, extremely wet and distorted, just for practicality purposes. I can't imagine trying to dial up 8 different sounds on the fly onstage using, basically, just my ToneWorks pedal, a TS, and my amp stuff...
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I can certainly reproduce the song live, it just won't be with all the finer textures and flavors that will be brought to the table when I record it. Do I have an issue with this? No. Live performances are all about energy and execution, and a PA isn't likely to give me exactly the same nuances as someone's home audio system anyhow...
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