I thought it might be a nice idea to share the process behind one of our mixes with you. A brief insight to how the world of online mixing works.
Marie Glad is an artist from Stockholm currently working on the third and final part of Bedroom Stories a “trilogy of electroacoustic pop stories about love in all its dimensions and forms”.
Jessica Corcoran was chosen by Marie on behalf of www.mixingaudiopros.com to mix a track for her forthcoming EP and album. We caught up with Jessica to see how mixing of ‘Blow’ went.
Based in South London, Jessica’s Studio gave a warm respite from the bitterly cold winters evening. The first thing you notice upon entering the control room is the huge Audient ASP8024 console sitting in front of the equally impressive Quested 4×10 main monitors. This warmth seems to have translated into Jessica mix for ‘Blow’.
To begin with, Marie sent the 24 bit 44.1kHz audio stems to us at mixingAudioPros, the first thing we did was to check them all out for clipping and to make sure everything lined up correctly from bar 1 beat 1. Luckily for us Marie had provided the stems in good order and nothing was needed before sending them on to Jessica to mix.
We sent Jessica the files the day before her mixing session so she could get straight to it on the day. So where did she start?
After listening to the rough mix and reading Marie’s notes to get an idea of the track, Jessica got started. “Because I work with a lot of guitar bands, rock / indie music, I always start with the drums, balance the drums, balance the percussion in this case then bring the bass in, then guitars, keyboards, vocals. Then I get a rough balance of it all, EQ-ing” and adding dynamics as I go and move onto automation quite quickly and move on to the details bit by bit”.
So was there anything more that needed doing other than a bit of balancing and subtle EQ?
“There were some parts you don’t notice immediately until you get more in tune with the structure if the song. Some percussion parts needed to be edited into the arrangement a little better to help the song flow, there was a tambourine part for instance, that I moved to be just on the chorus, but it’s not until you get into the details that you start to notice things like that“.
“There’s a nice little Jazz feel to the drums but they were a little quiet, so bringing them up in the mix helped move it along a bit better, giving it more of a ‘Kings of Convenience’ style driving beat”.
I work quite fast and I love the SSL plug-ins for that, they are fantastic, they make everything really good, really quickly!! I have my default chains that I have tweaked over time to give me the sound I want and it’s just a case of tweaking them a bit more on each song and adding anything else that’s needed”.
At this moment I take an admiring look at the quested 4×12 main monitors;
“I started the mix off on the Quested’s in order to get a good idea of the bottom end and the overall balance before moving down to the Tannoys (PBM 6.5) for all the automation and detailed stuff. The Tannoys are good because they’re just good Hi-Fi speakers, they’re a good representation of what people are going to go home and listen to music on, most people these days listen on headphones or laptops so you have to be careful of the bottom end not distorting laptop speakers!”
The mix turned out perfectly and Marie was delighted with the results, “I’m really happy with the creative direction Jessica added to the track”. In fact Marie was so pleased she asked us to mix the rest of the EP, which Jessica did a few days later despite a very busy schedule. The other mixes resulted in a lovely “Thanks for amazing mixes! “ message from Marie.