Mac Pro with M-Audio ProFire 2626 interface and M-Audio Axiom 61 USB keyboard controller/interface, running Apple Logic Studio 8, Toontrack EZDrummer with Drumkit From Hell, and Native Instruments Guitar Rig 3; RODE NT1-A condenser mic, Yamaha HSM80 active monitors, AKG K240 headphones; Ibanez and Schecter electric guitars, Ibanez Soundgear bass, Roland TD-3 V-Drums electronic drum kit.
Production Notes & Credits:
"Blood In the Sand" is a male vocal metal track. Jason composed, programmed, played and recorded/mixed all of the project in his spare-bedroom home studio.
Reviewed By: Marty Peters
Recording: Quite a solid effort in a genre that is often problematic for a one-person operation. Jason explains that the drums are all on separate tracks, as are a double-tracked main guitar, a melody track, clean guitar, bass, synth, cymbal track and solo track. The drums are a mix of sequenced MIDI and TD-3 V-Drums, played and then quantized. Jason tells us that his main concern with the recording centers around the vocals, and while we somewhat agree, let's take a look at the overall track first, shall we?
Right off the bat, Jason's skill level on the guitar impressed us. We were also impressed by the tone of the electric guitars, which are thankfully free of the "buzz saw" sound that is often associated with metal. We also must give Jason his props for a nicely conceived and executed drum program. For a guitar player he did all right! (Just joking, you six-string heads). As for the lead vocal, while we agree that it could "sit" a little more snugly in the mix, we do like the fact that it was tracked free of compression/limiting artifacts.
Suggestions: Vocal mixing may very well be the hardest aspect of a recordist's job, and the old adage that practice makes perfect is never more appropriate than in this circumstance. That said, we would encourage Jason to add a dash of reverb to the lead vocal and then reduce it several db in volume. Regarding the backing vocals, those sound too distance to our ears; raising them a tad would help balance the overall mix in our opinion.
Summary: Plenty to like here, a few tweaks could take it the rest of the way home.
Contact: Jason Burns, firstname.lastname@example.org.