How would you achieve that mix?


#1

I dig minimalist tracks or kind of any ambiant atmosphere where each instrument can be super wide and occupy the space for a maximum impact. But how would you achieve that « depth » in a mixing point of view?
Bonus : how would you do with an Elektron box and minimum external hardware?


#2

in case it helps


#3

I don’t have any useful advice but I just wanted to say that’s a great little tune!


#4

I know it sounds too simple but honestly it mostly comes down to eq. The hard part is knowing how to effectively use it.
Such a simple but hard thing to master, and is the fundamental tool when mixing


#5

Oh yeah nice idea thanks. i wll try to resample selected parts on my digitakt and see what stereo widening tricks i can achieve duplicating and panning, delaying …
I used to dupplicate mono drum voice or apply short delays on single tracks on my analog rytm to achieve that kind of layering effect but on mk1 it had no resampling, so you quiclky run out of fuel with that…


#6

+1 for Eq. i struggle with it a lot…what improved things for me is to always force me to avoid frequency overlap as much as possible directly at the creative process, rather than trying to correct things afterwards at the mixing stage.

it may seem like a very basic thing for many experienced users here but it was not so obvious for me at the begining…for example : lets say i am a pianist playing a pop song with a bassist. now i’ll try to avoid playing on the bass notes of the piano because it is very likely that i will have eq problems with the bass, and won’t have the tools/knowledge to layer/eq it properly. But Hey, didn’t realized that now my left hand is free and i can now use it to thicken my right hand chords!


#7

Just doing it with an elektron device is not so easy… you are thinking the right way with pannings of the same… here you can also use aonther trick…
a) duplicate the track (must be exactly the same)
b) put a lowpass on the first and a highpass on the second track…
c) dial in the same frequency on both tracks (depending on what kind of sound it is… mainly you can split around 500-1000)
Result makes this element spread out in the mix… its pretty nice that way :-))

mainly in a DAW you can think of defining the middle and sides of a mix with stereo spreading… in your example you have the more rimshot-like sounds mostly in the middle and the strings mostly in the side… this opens up that track so well… (great track by the way)


#8

We did eliminate the ringing frequency’s from our recorded material. I.e. sweeping the EQ and listening for “ringing” then removing it with a negative EQ Pole.

We wondered how we could do something like this in hardware. For a drum machine like RYTM or Tempest, when the sounds change throughout a set, we could not exchange EQ profile all the time.


#9

You can’t. Especially since you’re on stage and you can’t even really tell which frequencies are “ringing” in your mix. That’s what you have FOH people for. Especially because it’s different for every system and every venue.


#10

you could use a bandpass filter with negative setting, if there is a frequency, that is clearly pushing to hard


#11

For live you can always get a cheap graphic EQ and use it on the sum for pulling out nasty frequencies if there’s no FOH. But that’s not really meant for achieving a perfectly balanced mix, more just for getting rid of problems.


#12

@Sternenlicht I am thinking the analog heat is another tool than can thicken with distorsion while filtering harsh content thanks to its notch filter + eq. And it has presets


#13

You mean : apply any stereo widening trick (duplicating and panning, delay… .), but only on the track filtered to keep the mid- hi frequency content?

Cool!


#14

:slight_smile: yes, you can add whatever effects you like… in my example, you get some nice split of frequency… for example from a very present string sound you would hear the basses and low mids left and the highs right… this opens up the center of the mix for percussions or whatever you like to be present… also love to do this with guitar sounds, where you have a wide frequency range betwenn 150 and 8000 Hz :slight_smile:


#15

oh… i missed some information… you have to pan one of this tracks hard left and the other hard right… :slight_smile: (at least this can cause phase issues, if you dont pan 100%… but sometimes this also creates nice artefacts)


#16

This trick works with pads but instead of filtering you double the part up an octave lower. One part hard left, one hard right.


#17

Great tips/remarks.
Also, what do you think about dynamics and the depth dimension (reverb, delays) on this track?


#18

Eqing is really important, but I think of it more as icing on the cake. If you want your mix to sound minimal than you need to think minimally. Use less sounds and develop these sounds more. Allow for lots of open space in the mix so that when something happens the listener is very focused and not distracted by so many different sounds fighting for space. Eqing helps but I think the most important thing is to choose sounds that compliment eachother. That way you won’t have to eq much anyways since all the sounds will already haven their own spot in the mix.

When I first started making tunes in Ableton I got a little too obsessive with eqing and found myself cutting out too much from each sound. My music ending up sounding then because of that.

Good luck :slight_smile:


#19

Completely agree, carrefuly choosing sounds that compliment each other is a prerequisite for me too.
But still, I have to admit that harsh frequencies quickly build up that make the message less clear in the end. For example distorsion on a guitar, sibilance on the voice…things that cannot always be properly controlled at the source and need further eq.


#20

Well, personally I think you nailed it with this already. When I listen to minimal dub or dub techno for instance, the pounding bass and kicks and stabs all come through nice and clear because of the tendency to not double up notes - every instrument is hitting at a different point in time, for the most part. So things naturally have room to breathe via composition first, then add on the eq, panning, reverb, delay, etc. after that.