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I Believe in a Thing called Love - the Darkness

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ronws
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What can possibly go wrong? Only, everything. I grabbed the mic, like I was on stage, no pop filter. Held the mic away, even on the low parts. The mic is almost in my lap. And Audacity has timing problems when recording a live trach against an mp3 imported track.

To add insult to injury, I stink at recording and even the best didn't want to touch this. So, I did. And had a blast. I overload the mic and probably had the output on the USB interface set wrong, as I was trying different settings. I will be recording this again, tomorrow, Sunday, 11/20/2011, CST. I am using a CM-1 Studio condenser mic when I would rather have a Sennheiser e835 (next in my budget, before anything else.) Going through a Guitarface II USB interface right into a computer with an "onboard" sound chip in a computer built from spare parts in 2005. (Can you say "Frankenstein"?)

Tempo ajdust to compensate for Audacity's disparity between an imported mp3 backing track and live vocal audio (now, you know why I prefer to record just myself and guitar simultaneously.) Echo at .25 and .10, respectively. Low threshhold and medium ratio on the compressor. No eq or filter. I totally botched the first mix, doing that.

Even at two feet away, overloading the mic like the bad boy that I am.

maybe I can learn how to record and mix, one of these days.

http://dl2.dropbox.com/u/8750209/Darkness%20-%20I%20Believe%20In%20A%20Thing%20Called%20Love%201%20-%20rough.mp3

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I just realized that you can hear my dog, Shadow, barking in the background. He is actually outisde at the far end of the yard on my 1/4 acre lot. That's how loud he is, making it through the plate glass of the the sliding door window and some vertical blinds, over the sound barriers.

And, he sings opera ( a whole 'nother story.)

Yes, that's shadow in my avatar. And he's prettier than I am, darn it.

(pardon the profanity.)

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What a fun song. How the hell do you sing that high anyway? Try making sure the bitrate matches - for instance make sure the bitrate of the track you import matches the bitrate of your vocal track.. Do you have any level meters on audacity? You should be able to sound check your loud notes, and they should be just hitting the red - not clipping. You can always record low and bring up the volume on the track later if you are overlaoding the mic alot. You have some balls covering that song! If I tried to sing it, I'd prolly rupture my spleen. Awesome!

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Thanks, Keith, my brother in arms.

You are right, in that there is a disparity in Audacity when it tries to match a live recorded track (vocals) to an imported mp3 (backing track, karoake style, already final mixed).

My chain was tempo adjust, first. Even though I was singing exactly on the beat (since my latency sucks, I sing with one headphone ear off so that I can hear mysef. To be technical, the right headphone is off and behind my right ear) and yet in playback, the start is off and so is the tempo of the vocal track. On this, I had to use + .04 % to get it back in line. Then, some soft knee compressio. No eq, either custom or preset. And then echo, .25 and .10, respectively.

As for singing that high, it is easier for me than, say, singing the low part of "Silent Lucidity" from Queensryche. The ancient chinese secret? Air pressure and resonance. It has absolutely nothing to do with the throat.

As for the cajones to cover it, sure. I've got some big ones. It is better to try and fail than to never have tried at all. If you never try, you will fail, for sure.

And it was an absolute blast to record this. I had fun, whether any one else likes it, or not.

Again, I am already planning on recording it again and trying a new mix, even after that.

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Dude, you were rockin out there. I could feel the excitement and could imagine just having a blast. Those high notes are crazy, no chance in hell I could have hit those, but what I enjoyed most just the overall stoked nature of it.

You've gotta work on your mic's input levels man, cause I wanna hear that stuff without the overloading. That is absolutely rock and roll right there.

Hearing this convinced me I should put a couple things up I made from back when I was healthy. I remember that feeling, you know, just the sheer thrill of it all came through loud and clear in your track and it put me right back in that time and place when you'd just take off and fly. That is the best feeling in the world.

If you want any critique, a few of the high notes sounded like they might have been pitchy, but the mic was so overloaded it was hard for me to tell. Really you got so damned high, I wouldn't have dared.

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That was great fun to listen to, I really enjoyed it even despite the obvious recording difficulties.

BTW, the sound of a hoover (or fan) is drowning out the dog so it's not as big a problem as you might think!! :D

Fair play to you for posting. It's easy to post well recorded, comfortable song and wait for the compliments to roll in, but far more difficult to posting challenging stuff.

Challenging ourselves and working in far from ideal conditions is very important. That's what gigging is all about and this prepares you for it.

You did a great job, and you can really feel the fun and joy in the performance.

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I'm glad you guys got what I was feeling.

The hoover sound is the compressor creating an artifact. I could probably get rid of that by using a high-pass filter at about 950 Hz. It's just tedious to re-eq afterward. Audacity is not adjustable in real time. I have to pick the settings on an effect and it applies to the entire track.

And it is hard to judge pitch after the fact when it's so muddy. The only note that concerned me was the strat note on "guitar!" but that one came out right.

Being too far away from the mic, I overload it less but I get more room presence, which gives it a more karaoke sound.

And I totally had a blonde moment and didn't fully appreciate Keith's tech bit. He's right, the imported backing track is at one sampling rate and audacity records at another rate, namely, 44.1 kHz. This is the number of samples of data taken in a second. I bet if I matched up the sampling rates, that might solve the problem. Man, one of them simple little details that rises up and bites you on the keister.

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Greetings everyone. I am new here. Nice to meet everyone. I have been actually listening to everyone's uploads for awhile.

Anyway, I believe I can contribute some helpful advice on equipment tweaking. I, too, am a home recorder. and believe I can help solve some of those problems.

1st off, mic distortion. Obviously if anything comes through the mic distorted, then no effect patch will get rid of it, so clean, quiet tracks are best of course. Best way to solve this problem, lower mic input levels in the first place. Though now I use firewire equipment for recording, I used to have lower end things like the tascam porta 03, a small 4 track machine, then on to 16 track tascam tape. Each time I would do a scratch track. In essence a track to use to adjust levels before actually recording the good stuff. Especially now being able to record directly to digital.

I had the same issue, which is I would sing loudly and stand about a foot or so away from the mic. But this starts another problem. The further away from the mic you are, the less of your tonal qualities come through. The track loses a bit of presence. So get closer to the mic, but turn the input level down.

As far as timing and latency. My best advice, buy some memory chips for that old PC. Recording audio eats up memory like crazy. Inadequate memory will definitely screw up timing when recording.

I use Cool Edit Pro for recording and Adobe Audition for mixing. These programs allow me to actually 'move' a track by right clicking on it and moving the mouse, i can adjust the timing of the entire track even small miniscule amounts as needed.

The only mics I have are Shure SM57 & SM58.

But I can make them sound like higher end mics but getting good clean 'quiet' tracks and beefing them up in the mix afterwards.

Anyway, I hope this helps. If anyone needs any recording or mixing advice just ask. If you would like to check out my page here:

http://www.themodernvocalist.com/profile/SLStone

See you around...

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For those of you who may wonder, the above poster, slstone, is my actual brother (lives on the other side of the country.)

He is way more talented than I am. He can sing, and plays several instruments and even had a business writing jingles for websites.

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I just listened to it again, and thats one heck of a motivational song! Love it. Thanks for sharing that! I woke up with one hell of a sore throat, might not be able to cover Powerslave :( I'll try of course though lol. I'm about 1/2 done with my warm ups/work out so we will see.

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Thanks Bro for your kind words. Just want to remind everyone, I also have a vid of Kamelot's Karma. Same friends from Spain doing the music and me doing the vocals. Check it out if you would like.

I am also currently working on a cover of Kamelot's 'Forever' with me doing all of the instruments and vocals. Parts of the music need to be redone, and I am going to shoot some video for it. Look for it in a couple of months. As well as videos I am going to be making of my own songs. Speaking of which, I am down to the wire mixing my debut CD, 'Book of Shadows'. I think I will have it ready for release soon. I need to get some promo pics done and get the rest of my PK together. But I will post updates if anyone would like to keep track. Anway, nice to meet everyone and have a wonderful day...

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Unexpected song choice haha

Your a brave Dude no effects at all....that takes balls lol

If it was me id add a little delay/verb to the vox, and maybe a little compressor (that will help near the end where your voice overloads the mic) .

You have a similar voice to hawkins here.

Very good stuff man!!!

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Thank you, Chavie. I take that as a high compliment. I tried some delay and threw things off. Minimal soft compression, simply because there are losses when recording an analog signal (the voice) into digital format.

Blame it on Bob (videohere.) He mentioned that I had the right voice for this song and he was right, I think.

This song is so much crazy fun for me to sing. And easier than falling off a log. Absolutely no strain, anywhere. Which made it a whole lot of fun, as KillerKu noticed. I have a harder time hitting the low notes of, for example, "Silent Lucidity" by Queensryche. So, thanks, Jimmy. Yeah, my voice gets up there. Especially since I quit the pursuit of having the largest range possible and just concentrate on solidifying the range that I have. Ancient wisdom from pro singers with more knowledge and experience than I have, "do what it is that your voice can do." Mind you, I still work on my voice, but it is for the right coordination. Singing should be easier as time goes by, not harder.

So, maybe, that is my niche. Campy heavy metal. I can live with that. My brother prefers the more dramatic heavy metal. So, with the Stone brothers, you get the width of the genre, except that I won't do screamo.

I want everyone to have as much as fun as I did. Do what you can do and enjoy it and share it. I am the resident cheerleader so you would have to pretty much produce a tuneless breath for me to say anything critical.

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Actually, I can elaborate on that a bit. It's not just dramatic, but epic, symphonic, operatic metal that I like and play. One of many projects I have going on is that I am working on recording and shooting a video for the Nightwish version of Andrew Lloyd Webber's 'Phantom of the Opera'. I will, of course be singing Marco/Phantom part and my lovely wife Debra will be singing Tarja/Christine's part, with the exception that I am going to attempt the ending vocals that Tarja does right near the end of the live version. A project for the winter, since my CD is about done. And recording is almost done for the version I am doing for Kamelot's 'Forever'. In these songs, I am playing all instruments and doing most if not all the vocals, except as mentioned above for Phantom.

I like most Power Metal and Progressive Metal. I am a long time Dream Theater fan as well. Thinking about covering something from Images and Words, my fave DT album. Either Another Day or Under a Glass Moon, haven't decided yet.

Though you may not be able to tell it thus far, my all time favorite band isn't even considered prog, lol. I am a die hard Iron Maiden fan. I have seen them about 6 times.

I have seen some interesting covers here...anyone game for some Pagan's Mind?

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@ Ron and SL >>

GREAT to see that you located each other here at THE MODERN VOCALIST !!! :cool:

Am I to assume that there may be a joint collaboration concerning a video ??? With today's technology, even though you're both miles apart, it certainly isn't beyond the realm of possibility.... That would be cool !!!

Speaking of "Hunting High and Low", I just "shot" an email at SL.... Enough said for the moment :cool:

~A~

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That would depend on my brother Scott, Namlik. He's the pro, with his own thing. I'm just an aging hippie (I am two years older than he is, so, we're a couple of old coots.) He's never approached me to do a collaberation and I may not be up to his caliber. That's okay, I'm going to continue my own redneck metal perspective, just as it is. No harm, no foul. Thanks to the way we were raised, we seek our own independence and being brothers is a result of genetics. And Scott's being nice. I'm actually the most mellow, between him, me, and our mother. If you can believe that.

But, I think, me speaketh too much.

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Thanks, Scorpione. It was easy for me to sing. That's not what makes me a good singer, though I appreciate the compliment. What it is, is a good example of doing a song that is suited to my voice. A number of people have commented that I have a light voice. And this is a song from a light-voiced singer, Justin Hawkins. It just happens to be a favorite of mine. I totally get the "red dwarf" style humor of the video. The hammy posing of Hawkins, who is totally lampooning himself and every other "rock star." The song makes me think of a the moments of self-deprecating humor in "This is Spinal Tap." The entire concept of the video and even live performances is parody, centered around an honest love song, with a voice destined to be "pretty."

I know my limitations and am not scared of them. I won't ever sound like Axl Rose or a number of other raspy singers. But I can live the the Justin Hawkins comparison all day long.

This song is also an exercise in doing what your voice can do. If Pat Boone, a bass, sang this song, his performance would be just as valid.

Rockonwhichyabadself.

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Radically different on a few things.

First off, and I got it really cheap, I've got a Sennheiser e835. It came in the mail, today , 11/25/2011, from buying on ebay. So, I took care of errands and then came home, unwrapped it, plugged, and lit it into it.

And Keith, who had originally donated the backing track, mixed it for me. My mixeds tend to sound like 70's radio. I tightened up the phrasing on the first verse but Keith still said it took him a bit of time to align (probably ten minutes). It's a problem I am having with audacity. Then, like a recording engineer, he asked me what I wanted from the mix. Vocals should have some prominence but not overpowering. pretty much that was it. I didn't think of the stereo swing on just the beginning guitars fading into right dominate on the music and centered vocals. That was neat and inspired.

Personally, I heard soe pitchiness that I would fix on the fly and I should probably record this, yet again. But I have to say that a salesman I had talked to was right about this mic. It will take quite an onslaught.

http://dl2.dropbox.com/u/8750209/I%20Believe%20in%20a%20Think%20Called%20Love%20-%20R.mp3

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