Hey guys, I haven't really posted here much recently as I have been very busy with my course.

I am a masters student studying Music Engineering and Production, and for my major project I am recording, mixing and producing a progressive metal album of my own material.

I won't go into any detail about what processes I have applied or what recording techniques I used as I want any feedback to be from a 'clean slate' perspective.

I am happy to share any techniques I used if asked, but I will keep this initial post free from detailed information.

I am looking for feedback on the mix as a whole, but also specific instruments. The work I have done on this track I think is by far my best work I have ever done, although I am sure there is still room for improvement.

Musically and sonically the album was influenced by a variety of bands including Dream Theater, Between the Buried and Me, Protest The Hero, Periphery, Ozric Tentacles, Coheed & Cambria and various other progressive metal and rock bands.

And finally, the track is unmastered, just mixed.

Here's the link: https://www.dropbox.com/s/offlx67ku9gr84j/V%20-%20Perfect%20Cosmic%20Meltdown%20%28WIP%29.mp3

UPDATED MIX: https://www.dropbox.com/s/obrdn1lrjrorfhl/V%20-%20Perfect%20Cosmic%20Meltdown%20WIP%202.mp3

MOST UPDATED MIX + MASTER: https://www.dropbox.com/s/6yslotq3wpa3yv6/V%20-%20Perfect%20Cosmic%20Meltdown%20Master.wav

Thanks in advance!
Last edited by Random3 at Aug 5, 2014,
Cool stuff. I can hear your influences shaping your style.

You're looking to get a big boy degree here, so i'm not going to spare you.

I think your lead tone is weak. I also think you should listen to your mix through at least 5 different brand/size speakers before really calling it 'mixed'.. I know you weren't thorough to that end. With my Logitechs it was acceptable, for a rough mix anyway. But as soon as there weren't $300 headphones (and some benefit of the doubt) involved, your stereo image evaporated through every other set of speakers I own for that exact purpose. It made me consider that you may have made some fundamental mistakes when doing the actual miking.

Your drums sound natural. That's the nice way of putting it. But what this actually means is that I hear leakage/natural reverberation, and much less pick up of each drum's natural harmonics that give them their timbre. My approach towards drums has always been a mix of close and distant miking. The trick is to use both, so that you can hard-pan yourself a distinct stereo image using seperate tracks for each drum.. yet also maintain that natural sound that you only get from recording the set as a whole. We can talk drum to drum, situation to situation specifics if you'd like.

And that's just the drums. A lot of the guitar mixing needs work too, but it's not as bad. The ground work there is fundamentally solid. To my ears it's not quite there yet - without actually sitting here working on it, I can already say I'd be looking to make a minor adjustment around 2.4-2.6k to your lead tone, a cut to reduce a small amount of attack.. Then make a VERY precise boost somewhere in the neighborhood of 5k, 1-3db tops.. in combination with some reverb, to actually pull it up in the mix a little bit and give your lead some presence. I'd shelf real low on one side of the rhythm track's image - hard to say exactly how low without trying, but it'd be for a minor beef to the overall bass. Truthfully there's a million things i'd probably try.

I think that if you are confident in your stereo miking techniques, then you haven't put enough work into your mix yet. I think if that's the best you can get it, then you haven't put enough work into your stereo miking techniques yet. Either way, this was the weakest part for me. To casual ears, you have written and recorded something truly great. To someone who has studied what you're studying, it screams 'amateur'. Or at the very least, 'rough copy'.

If you have a question or want to talk about something, feel free to send me a message.

A small note: The guitar work that starts ~6:20, very Petrucci-esque. I think that the percussion behind this particular section doesn't match it well enough. This was the only part of the song where it didn't sound (to me) like it was arranged by a professional. For some contextual insight into my thoughts on improvement - take a listen to "The Test That Stumped Them All". That was the one that immediately jumped to my mind when I heard your passage. Not just the intro, but the chorus too.. "the boy is just simply crazy" etc. There's also a fairly ridiculous section of "In the Presence of Ememies Part 1", that spans ~1:35 - ~2:10. Between listening to these 2 examples, and reconsidering, I am sure you will be able to make adjustments that only further the excellence of your piece (If you choose of course).
Last edited by cm880999 at Jul 17, 2014,
Quote by Random3
Very helpful, I will take all of that into account and will probably send you a PM with some specific questions.

Thanks for being blunt as well, I appreciate when people aren't afraid to be completely honest. Thanks!

No problem, we're all here trying to help each other get better. My post definitely comes off overtly negative. However, anyone who cares to listen will find your track filled to the brim with style, a true showcase a plethora of clearly hard earned skills spanning from composition to playing to recording and mixing that many here will only ever dream of. It's all very impressive. But you already know that - no sense in making it my focal point. Besides - I'm guessing most of your other replies are going to be "fkin sweet m8 your tone is good, c4c me now". I can relate to the amount of work that you put into this - so you've got my thinking cap, if you want it. Good luck!
That intro is pretty awesome. I didn't like your snare sound at around 2:30, there's too much wire sound on your ghost notes, but that's just my opinion.

Your guitar playing is very tight and clear. Keep up the good work dude!
That guy's review was top notch! Such good feedback. Anyways, really solid song! I can heart the influences but i can hear your own sound way more

My only contribution is that it feels you got stuck in an idea too much sometimes like from 4:55 to the 6:15-ish
I can definetly hear the Between the buried and me's influence. <3 I love btbam