How often do you start completely over?

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Doc Roc
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How often do you start completely over?

Post by Doc Roc » Sat Feb 07, 2009 1:55 pm

How often, if ever, do you start completely over on a mix? If you have done this, is it only when the mix is just really not working out? Have you ever done it just to try it a different way? When you do it, do you usually find the original better or the repeated one better?
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Post by getreel » Sat Feb 07, 2009 2:09 pm

Well, I don't start completely over often. More often with me it's like a painting that I keep working on. Sometimes I go too far and over do it and it's sounds overworked and losses some coolness or excitement. Very frequently, I end up liking early more rough mixes than the ones I work to death. It's great that with the new DAW stuff I can just save each mix revision and go back to any version I want later. That's helps and hinders at the same time though because sometimes I end up with too many choices. Sometimes though, the mixes need a lot of work and time put into them. Depends on the material and how complex the songs are and the number of tracks, density of the mix, etc. Actually I have a mix I'm about to do just that, start completely over. I like some of the real early rough mixes of it but there have been some parts re-recorded and added since then and I don't like any of the later mixes with the complete parts for some reason.

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Post by Gummy » Sat Feb 07, 2009 7:42 pm

I used to do it a lot. It was usually when I found myself lost in the mix. Sometimes it was because I was very close to what I wanted, but I could figure out what to do next. Sometimes it was because I had done too much and I had gone past a good mix into some dark evil mushy sounding thing. The first time I did it I was worried that I was close and would never get it back to where it was. Every time I did it it always sounded better the second time around. I think it is because by then you know the song and the tracks better. With time I have come to feel less precious about the mixes. The only time I worry now is when I am working out the final kinks with the band and I have to keep track of which mix is which. I think I got myself in trouble more when I worried about "techniques" and the "right" way to do it then when I was looking for what the song needed and how to get it there.

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Post by Meriphew » Sun Feb 08, 2009 6:35 am

On my last release (Lovestruck), I recorded it 3 times. First time I recorded about 10 songs, then realized that I had my levels all wrong, so I re-recorded it again at proper levels. Then I decided to use a whole new batch of songs, so I recorded it for the third time.

That was the first time I ever recorded my own record (always in someone else's studio before). It was a lot of work, but SO much fun.

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Post by henge » Sun Feb 08, 2009 7:06 am

On my latest I had to start a whole song over from scratch because a decision I made during mixing made me realize the whole approach was wrong!
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Post by drumsound » Sun Feb 08, 2009 2:19 pm

I have at times gotten a mix that feels totally out of whack. I"m usually pretty deep into the mix so I believe I have made the tones work together, yet my balance is off. If I feel I've really lost it I will slam all of the faders down and rebuild the mix, leaving the Eq and compression settings that I have already dialed in. I may change them as the mix is rebuilt, but often times not a lot.

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Post by vvv » Sun Feb 08, 2009 3:23 pm

1 outta 20?
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ott0bot
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Post by ott0bot » Mon Feb 09, 2009 3:38 pm

I've done it several times with my own recordings, but not often with others peoples music. There is often a deadline involved and I don't have the time to rebuild everything even when it's sounding a little off. I usually trust my overall mixing intstincts, so I'll do something similar to drumsound and start with volume adjustments. If that doesn't help i'll go through the plug-ins on tracks one by one and see if its and odd setting I put in somewhere, especailly a high/low end roll off I was trying out and forgot to disable. Then if that doesn't work I'll go through and mute tracks one by one and see if there is a few tracks that are ruining the mix.

It's usually happends to me when there is too much added to the mix. Like the guitar player want to put down 8 tracks, lots off added sequencing or massive percussion overdubs. It just gets busy and there are too many tracks in the same frequencies. Yeah protools give you 32, or 48, or 128 tracks...but it doesn't mean you gotta use them all!

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Post by timmymacdd » Mon Feb 09, 2009 8:26 pm

If I have to remix it from scratch then I make the band re-record it from scratch. This time with a click track.....HEHE.

mistakes are usually what makes the good parts sound good though. But once in a while I get pissed and have added too much to it....and analyzed a crappy song way too much........and then think that it is sometimes the simplest things that make a song great...it is not always the engineering that makes a song shine.

USUALLY the best way to start over is to realize that you need to take a damn day OFF. You can't always mix a song you just recorded last night........you need a fresh start....and some meditation or sleep while thinking about it...I have killed many a song by hearing it at 2 in the afternoon and finishing the tracking at 1 in the morning and getting up at 7 am to mix and by 11 am it sounds like shit. Usually talking with the producer and the band and cutting parts out that shouldn't be there or sending the band back to re-work the parts so they blend better is the actual only way to get a mix right. I call that the "proof" mix.....and sometimes a newer song is just not thought out properly to fit into a recording.

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Post by cjogo » Thu Feb 12, 2009 4:12 pm

Really depends on how old the song is we are addressing. Rarely do we start completely over ...way too costly. It's usually just one or two tracks of the performance. We might quantize the drums @ maybe only 89% with a slight 10% swing...that gives some room for error. Just by re-recording the piano or guitar rhythm or the bass track..can bring the tune together. Our system is an antique by some standards .....so it takes considerable time :: to load up a 48 track song ....especially when 16 of the tracks are on a midi/Floppy disk.
whatever happened to ~ just push record......

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Post by adam » Fri Feb 13, 2009 7:42 pm

Gummy wrote:I used to do it a lot. It was usually when I found myself lost in the mix. Sometimes it was because I was very close to what I wanted, but I could figure out what to do next. Sometimes it was because I had done too much and I had gone past a good mix into some dark evil mushy sounding thing. The first time I did it I was worried that I was close and would never get it back to where it was. Every time I did it it always sounded better the second time around. I think it is because by then you know the song and the tracks better.
Bingo.

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Post by RefD » Fri Feb 13, 2009 9:51 pm

adam wrote:
Gummy wrote:I used to do it a lot. It was usually when I found myself lost in the mix. Sometimes it was because I was very close to what I wanted, but I could figure out what to do next. Sometimes it was because I had done too much and I had gone past a good mix into some dark evil mushy sounding thing. The first time I did it I was worried that I was close and would never get it back to where it was. Every time I did it it always sounded better the second time around. I think it is because by then you know the song and the tracks better.
Bingo.
sounds like an argument in favour of demos, really.
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Slider
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Post by Slider » Fri Feb 13, 2009 10:23 pm

I used to do this all the time when I was mixing on a console.
Exactly what drumsound and Gummy said, keep the eq and compression and start rebuilding the balance adjusting as needed. Always sounded better the second time around.
It's just not the same violently pushing down virtual faders with a mouse.

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Post by adam » Sat Feb 14, 2009 7:28 am

RefD wrote:
adam wrote:
Gummy wrote:I used to do it a lot. It was usually when I found myself lost in the mix. Sometimes it was because I was very close to what I wanted, but I could figure out what to do next. Sometimes it was because I had done too much and I had gone past a good mix into some dark evil mushy sounding thing. The first time I did it I was worried that I was close and would never get it back to where it was. Every time I did it it always sounded better the second time around. I think it is because by then you know the song and the tracks better.
Bingo.
sounds like an argument in favour of demos, really.
Yes, definitely, especially if speakers, room, and ears aren't well known yet. I still do it a lot if I have time and almost always prefer the second version. I can't think of too many things in life that, if given the chance to do over again, could not be improved upon. The cost of the opportunity is precious time, though.

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