Black Magic and My Type by Lucca Mae
Lucca Mae was really happy with the last production work I did and hired me to produce a further 2 songs. She did explicitly ask for the same kind of vibe as the previous songs, but with a more ‘live style’. She appreciated the analog approach of the tracking, we recorded bass, drums and some guitar live in the studio using the available preamps with some inserts committing to tape/pro tools. The goal for the songs was to create a smokey, vintage jazz style, yet with a sound able to compete with a more modern pop song. I feel that I achieved this, but not so much in post-production. My mixing was relatively simple, replicating a console mix approach with the SSL 4000 channel strip across all the channels and just a selected amount of plugins emulating a limited number of compressors and FXs. I could say this was definitely inspired by the Andy Wallace examples of mixing techniques.
This was an unfinished song from a previous band, the song was commissioned by a man who claimed to be the president of a Father’s Rights organisation. The song needed to be a minimum of 5 minutes therefore it has extra verses. The project was never finalised but we had vocals, bass and guitars recorded almost 2 years ago and so I thought to record drums, some extra guitar (solo) and use it for the portfolio. Guitars and bass were recorded through amps. Drums were recorded with mainly closed mics and several overheads for a quick turnaround. The post-production has been the most experimental mixing process I’ve used over the last few months. I used Micheal Braurer’s In the Box mixing technique. This is where he manages to transition from the analog world to completely digital. He does so while maintaining the exact same approach/routing he was using with the SSL Console 9000 which has 4 sub mixers because it was a Console designed to mix audio for films.
This composition was inspired by the soundtrack from the Stranger Things Netflix Series. My vision for the music is to feature in a Sci-Fi post-apocalyptic movie where robots have taken control of the universe. The scene for the music is a heavily industrialised area, where many robot soldiers are marching in formation. At the 1.23 mark where the guitar part begins, the Robot General begins to give his battle speech, this is the reason why I applied a heavily fuzzed and gated sound tone while recording it. At the 2.20 mark where the lead synth begins with a melodic line, the scene moves to the human resistance group hiding and preparing for war. The robot theme is extended as I used the AI logic drummer within the song, although I did not go with an electronic kit but rather an acoustic kit sound.
‘I am Strong’ Meditation and Yoga Music
This Meditation was 1 of 11 pieces of music commissioned for a Yoga, Pilates and Meditation App, the MerryBody App. The music is used within Yin Yoga classes and guided meditations. The app is a membership-based app, where around 800 people pay a monthly fee to access the classes. To evoke the theme of ‘I am Strong’ along with creating a relaxing meditation feel, I went for an emotional cinematic vibe. I experimented with a few virtual sounds of piano and strings. I delivered the music only as part of the job, the client has added their guided meditation over the top.
Sick Or In Love
A song by Tegan Clarke, production wise, I would say we are still in the pre-production stage. The goal would be to record with a real drumkit and better-recorded vocals. Tegan brought her song to me in a stripped-down piano and vocal format. To create the arrangement, I presented my ideas to Tegan and she then offered feedback. A few things are worth mentioning for the post-production. The backing vocals have been recorded roughly by Tegan. In order to place them nicely in the mix, I applied various pitch corrections and format processing. Also the application of automated filters on the intro section and outro. Overall it’s a pretty good-sounding demo but there is definitely so much room for improvement in terms of production.