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Fantasy track combining Medieval Era II with acoustic guitar. Looking for any feedback on mix.

Hey everyone,

This was created for a Fantasy game coming out in 2018. It is played in a secret library area and was meant to be calming and somewhat reflective. The main melody is the main theme of the game, inverted.

I thought I did pretty well with the mix. Everything sounds clear and somewhat loose. Which was intentional. But lately I've been getting more mix related criticisms. Just looking to boost my mixing chops.

Thanks in advance for listening/helping.

Instruments:

Psaltery
2 Acoustic Guitars
B2 for tail, Spaces for stage placement, Fabfilter EQ for cutting, and slight compression from NI on guitars.

 

Rafdows

New Member
This song make me think about what Bjorn Lynne has done on certain of them album.
It's cool but arrangement are missing, It seems that is only a loop but not really.
So for me, that's a good start but if you can go a little further in it, it can be great.
Nice sound and mix by the way.
Rafdows.
 

Rafdows

New Member
That's a track from me, it's a little in the same style (inspirated by playing Heartstone) and has you see, here I've made a lot of arrangement, but maybe you'll find it it's too much :-D But if you like it, that will maybe help you :)

"Tell me a Journey With Playing Cards"

Composed with Psycle
All instruments SampleTank 2.0
2 x Aqualyzer : one for bass and hights and a second more for hights
A simple compressor on certain part (nodal use)

And so know, you'll be able to say back to me what's wrong for you with my track :-D

Nce regards and music before all!

Rafdows
 
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MatthewHarnage

MatthewHarnage

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This song make me think about what Bjorn Lynne has done on certain of them album.
It's cool but arrangement are missing, It seems that is only a loop but not really.
So for me, that's a good start but if you can go a little further in it, it can be great.
Nice sound and mix by the way.
Rafdows.

Actually the develop specifically wanted this kind of simple arrangement. I know I could've added lots of extra stuff ( I usually do, check out the main theme to the game). But the mixing of such little instruments is always a hard thing for me. So thanks for the compliment on that!

I really liked your track! The solo violin stands out as a bad sounding instrument. But the music itself works very well. Maybe a little muddy in the mids and maybe a tad too much reverb. But thats my personal opinion. Thanks for sharing!
 

bbunker

Senior Member
I thought the psaltery could have had more 'psaltery' character - it sounds awfully mandolin-like in the mix you have here. Maybe try finding the 'woody' frequency range of the instrument that'll bring out the size and shape of the instrument and goose it a bit. Personally, I'd like the Psaltery even a little bit drier - I was imagining an imaging space with the psaltery right in front, and the guitars back a few paces, and that intimacy might help a bit.

I'm talking super minor tweaks at this stage - that first version is pretty much ready to ship...
 
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MatthewHarnage

MatthewHarnage

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I thought the psaltery could have had more 'psaltery' character - it sounds awfully mandolin-like in the mix you have here. Maybe try finding the 'woody' frequency range of the instrument that'll bring out the size and shape of the instrument and goose it a bit. Personally, I'd like the Psaltery even a little bit drier - I was imagining an imaging space with the psaltery right in front, and the guitars back a few paces, and that intimacy might help a bit.

I'm talking super minor tweaks at this stage - that first version is pretty much ready to ship...

Thanks for your opinion bbunker. I could see that working well if the Psaltery was meant to lead the track. I guess in a way it is, but at the second repeat its meant to be on the same "level" as the guitar lead in 3rds. That the only reason I don't have it front and center, and the guitars supporting it. I figured having them kind of exchange importance it'd lead to the loop having more chances of avoiding listener fatigue. (Luckily the track is only played in a secret area of the game and won't really be heard more than a handful of time and for short lengths). Thank you for saying its good to ship as is, because it's already been submitted and approved by the dev team. I could still make mixing changes though, so if I decide later on to change it, its no big deal.
 

bbunker

Senior Member
Yeah, I'm not surprised that the devs approved it - it sounds great.

It's one of those psycho-acoustic things - you notice the thing that's different, and the psaltery is just different enough that it sounds like the 'soloist.' So, even in the parallel passage, it feels like the soloist playing along with the accompaniment.

It's not a bad thing, though - it's the difference between that soloist doing its own thing accompanied by the guitars and the soloist turning around to more directly make music with those guitars. The balance changes but the texture stays basically the same.

That's my thought, anyway - you've got the balance right on the parallel section, but I'd try out bringing out the character of the psaltery especially (!) there, to bring out the texture of the combination. Like Salmon Roe on Sushi. Or Something like that. ;)
 
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MatthewHarnage

MatthewHarnage

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Yeah, I'm not surprised that the devs approved it - it sounds great.

It's one of those psycho-acoustic things - you notice the thing that's different, and the psaltery is just different enough that it sounds like the 'soloist.' So, even in the parallel passage, it feels like the soloist playing along with the accompaniment.

It's not a bad thing, though - it's the difference between that soloist doing its own thing accompanied by the guitars and the soloist turning around to more directly make music with those guitars. The balance changes but the texture stays basically the same.

That's my thought, anyway - you've got the balance right on the parallel section, but I'd try out bringing out the character of the psaltery especially (!) there, to bring out the texture of the combination. Like Salmon Roe on Sushi. Or Something like that. ;)

Thanks for your thoughts! I'll try it out with my audio mix. Glad to hear there is no complaints on the MIDI side of things. Adjusting the audio is so much easier this way.

Thanks once again!
 

Rafdows

New Member
Actually the develop specifically wanted this kind of simple arrangement. I know I could've added lots of extra stuff ( I usually do, check out the main theme to the game). But the mixing of such little instruments is always a hard thing for me. So thanks for the compliment on that!

I really liked your track! The solo violin stands out as a bad sounding instrument. But the music itself works very well. Maybe a little muddy in the mids and maybe a tad too much reverb. But thats my personal opinion. Thanks for sharing!

Haha! You are totaly right! And I know my problem about reverb and in this one it still ok if you listen to certain others of my tracks!! Hihi! But I work on that!! :) Thank you!! And so nice work for your track if it's the conditions :) Juste listen it several times and finally it will be perferct, you know as a song as need time to be finished really :)

Rafdows
 
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MatthewHarnage

MatthewHarnage

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Haha! You are totaly right! And I know my problem about reverb and in this one it still ok if you listen to certain others of my tracks!! Hihi! But I work on that!! :) Thank you!! And so nice work for your track if it's the conditions :) Juste listen it several times and finally it will be perferct, you know as a song as need time to be finished really :)

Rafdows
Oh yeah! It's always good to grow as a mixer/composer. Thank you for listening and commenting! :D
 

bbunker

Senior Member
Liked the main theme, too. ;)

You've got a fun little Soundcloud treasure trove there, amigo - I like what I heard so far. Any highlights I should check out first???
 
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MatthewHarnage

MatthewHarnage

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Liked the main theme, too. ;)

You've got a fun little Soundcloud treasure trove there, amigo - I like what I heard so far. Any highlights I should check out first???

Thank you bunker!

Some of my favorites are:

Cendric Main Theme
Die Nachtblume Battle Theme
My OST to Above: The Fallen
Davy the Pirate is one of my most played pieces.

Thanks for checking everything out!
 

J-M

A glorified bedroom composer...
Great stuff, I love ERA II, but haven't had a chance to use it very much yet. I need to listen to more of your music until Soundcloud (apparently) bites the dust!
 

yhomas

Member
If anything, it sounds too clear--like I am ~3ft from the instruments. Probably better to start to clear and add fuzz than the other way around.

For this type of music, I think it is too much on a steady beat. Let some of the high notes start times drag behind the beat more--maybe play without a metronome.
 
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MatthewHarnage

MatthewHarnage

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Great stuff, I love ERA II, but haven't had a chance to use it very much yet. I need to listen to more of your music until Soundcloud (apparently) bites the dust!
Thank you MrLinssi! Please do! And let me know what you think! :)
 
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MatthewHarnage

MatthewHarnage

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If anything, it sounds too clear--like I am ~3ft from the instruments. Probably better to start to clear and add fuzz than the other way around.

For this type of music, I think it is too much on a steady beat. Let some of the high notes start times drag behind the beat more--maybe play without a metronome.

Thanks for your opinion. But "too clear" is ironically, not clear to me what you mean. I get the tempo thing for taverns and more homey/folksy piece ingame. But in this instance I don't think rubato would work like I want it to. I have some slight tempo fluctuations but thats about it. You can especially hear it in the repeat with the guitar doubling the melody in 3rds.
 

yhomas

Member
The instruments--especially lead sounds very close up. I am imagining I would like a more distant background sound, perhaps with more room sound. I listened to some YouTube videos and it may significantly be a characteristic of this type of instrument.

Obviously, this is just one laypersons opinion.
 
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MatthewHarnage

MatthewHarnage

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The instruments--especially lead sounds very close up. I am imagining I would like a more distant background sound, perhaps with more room sound. I listened to some YouTube videos and it may significantly be a characteristic of this type of instrument.

Obviously, this is just one laypersons opinion.


Thats possible. The Psaltery kinda stands out. It's timbre just has that type of presence/quality. Thanks for you opinion. But after asking around I think its at least a good/professional mix. For now thats good enough since the track has been approved. Time to move on to the next track!

Thanks for everyone who commented with feedback!
 
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