#1
After tooling around with a focusrite interface for a while I recorded these tracks for my drummer to have something to jam to. It's just me singing and playing guitar and is my first attempt at recording so I expect some criticism. Any tips would be appreciated.
Btw I am recording with presonus studio one, using a focusrite scarlett condesor mic in my bedroom with no acoustic proofing whatsoever.

https://soundcloud.com/miles-mitten/sets/a-curiosity-in-delusionsfirst-upload
Question Everything
Gear
PRS SE 245
Schecter Solo Special
B-52 AT-100
Orange CR60
Fulltone GT-500
Morley Bad Horsie 2
Banshee Talkbox
#2
Okay then, please understand that I'm genuinely trying to give you some helpful tips and opinions here; I'm not trying to insult your music in any way. But to be completely honest with you, there were a lot of problems with this collection of songs, mostly because of the recording and production quality is, well, horrible.

First of all, about the first track, Pulse: The tapping parts sound pretty weak, I recommend you work a bit on getting your tapping technique clean and strong. This partly extends to a lot of the other guitar parts, you have trouble playing cleanly and staying on time, especially at the guitar solo you can hear that you have difficulty playing the stuff you're trying to play. Did you record this to a metronome click, and do you practice to a metronome? Since it could really help with the timing issues. I also recommend that you really listen to those tapping parts and the guitar solo and try to see the flaws there yourself, they don't sound very good because your technique is all over the place. And about your vocals... now, I'm not a singer, and I don't want to discourage you, but the vocals did not sound good. You had a lot of trouble staying in tune, and your singing technique needs a lot of work. You really need to use your whole body to sing, it needs to be loud, clear and powerful. Now it just sounded like you were speaking with some melody and rhythm. Learn some breathing techniques and work on your diaphragm usage and you will get better.

About the production: a lot of the problems with the production come from the fact that your guitar playing and singing are both technically lacking, but I can give you some pointers. Lower the gain on the guitar a little, it sounds really fuzzy now and will lead into a lot of problems with a full mix. To compensate for the lost thickness and impact, you should definitely record two guitar tracks. Double tracking is relatively simple: just record the rhythm guitar parts twice, and pan the other track left and the other right. This will lead into a much, much stronger tone and wider stereo image, which is a good thing when not overdone. Then, you could add a splash of reverb to the vocals - nothing much, just some room verb to make it sound better. I can also hear some buzzing and noise, a new, better cable and lower gain might help here.

That isn't to say that there isn't anything good about this. I think your riffs were solid, and what I could tell f the vocal melody it was pretty cool too. I also liked the lyrics, they're definitely the strong point here. I think it's a solid foundation for a good song, if you get the technical issues sorted it would sound pretty sweet.

I listened to a couple of other songs as well, and the same criticism persists. You have problems with timing and both the vocals and the guitar need practice if you want to make good recordings. The crunch sounds have way, way too much gain. I think that the problem here is that it all sounds very rushed, you clearly have great ideas and passion, but it sounds like you didn't practice the songs enough and you paid virtually no attention to any kind of production or recording quality. If you put a lot of time into it, these songs will turn out good, just practice them until they're perfect, and record them properly, preferably after you have studied some recording techniques further. It's also a pretty bad idea to record songs for your drummer like this, you're not playing in time, so how can the drummer play atop these songs properly?

I hope I wasn't too harsh with this, but I guess telling you what I really think is worth more than needlessly sugarcoating it. If you want to flame me, be my guest, and if you have some questions to ask feel free to do so. I'd be happy to help you get better at recording your own songs, I think you have the potential.
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#3
I appreciate you comment and first off no I don't think you were being too harsh. Most of what you said I feel I knew before hand, but I still wanted a demo or something to work off of.

To start off with the gain issue, when I recorded the guitar I had to turn down the volume to compensate for the vocals, thus making it seem more fuzzy. Any tips on how to retain that tone and presence at a lower volume? It seems to lose the aggression and punch I'm looking for when I dial back the gain.

As for the metronome, it was actually brought up at our last practice since we now both have compatible versions of studio one, I planned on re-recording everything with my new amp and taking a littler more time to master it for him to lay down the drum tracks; my point being, he(my drummer) said to use a click. I'd never really played with anyone besides other guitar players until we got together so timing hasn't been a huge issue in my bedroom lol

Vocals, Idk what to say about vocals. Sometimes I record when my older brother is home and I know he can hear me and for some reason I'm still self conscious about that. I don't seem to have this issue in front of other people ever, so maybe I'm just making excuses. Or maybe I have issues with my brother I need to work out lol. Either way, I did attempt to put some reverb on them but I'm still a newb at mastering in general.

Thanks for the compliments on my lyrics by the way. I believe Demonize stands out as a decently mastered track compared to the rest, if you'll mind the attempt at a hidden track(which leads into A.C.I.D) I would appreciate any recording tips, and as for right now I think the metronome will help the most.

The next time around I will definitely spend way more time getting things done right. But,I'm easy to please and It's still cool to have a little something to show for my work and be able to hear myself for once lol. Thanks again for the comment, any other help would be greatly appreciated
Question Everything
Gear
PRS SE 245
Schecter Solo Special
B-52 AT-100
Orange CR60
Fulltone GT-500
Morley Bad Horsie 2
Banshee Talkbox
#4
Quote by WildMiles96
To start off with the gain issue, when I recorded the guitar I had to turn down the volume to compensate for the vocals, thus making it seem more fuzzy. Any tips on how to retain that tone and presence at a lower volume? It seems to lose the aggression and punch I'm looking for when I dial back the gain.


I think that first of all, if you're playing guitar and singing at the same time, don't. Record the guitar parts on their own, and vocals on their own. You can get more punch via the method I mentioned in my first post, double tracking. Practically every rock and metal song you've ever heard that has even a semi decent production has been double tracked. Hell, sometimes it's quad tracked. Another thing is that guitar isn't supposed to sound fat and aggressive on it's own in the mix, it's supposed to blend in with the bass and drum tracks to create a better track as an entirety. If we'd isolate a guitar track from any of your favorite songs, you'd be surprised how much weaker it sounds on it's own. But that's the way it's supposed to be, the bass and the drums should back the guitar up.

If you have no way of recording bass or have trouble with drums, you could try to take down the gain just a little bit, and bump up the mids on the EQ.

Quote by WildMiles96
As for the metronome, it was actually brought up at our last practice since we now both have compatible versions of studio one, I planned on re-recording everything with my new amp and taking a littler more time to master it for him to lay down the drum tracks; my point being, he(my drummer) said to use a click. I'd never really played with anyone besides other guitar players until we got together so timing hasn't been a huge issue in my bedroom lol


I know the feel, and so do a lot of other bedroom players It's actually really, really common that a bedroom guitarists gets a band or records a song for the first time and find out that their timing is all over the place. Playing to a metronome, a drum track or to a backing track is pretty good practice in this regard.

Quote by WildMiles96
Vocals, Idk what to say about vocals. Sometimes I record when my older brother is home and I know he can hear me and for some reason I'm still self conscious about that. I don't seem to have this issue in front of other people ever, so maybe I'm just making excuses. Or maybe I have issues with my brother I need to work out lol. Either way, I did attempt to put some reverb on them but I'm still a newb at mastering in general.


Again, I know that feeling. I don't like playing in front of other people, and I just can't bring myself to sing a note if someone else hears it. But I'm not a singer so it's not such a big deal for me.

I did notice the reverb in some tracks. What reverb did you use? I think it sounded a bit weird, maybe the mix was too high and the decay too low. Idk, could just be that the reverb itself wasn't the best.

Quote by WildMiles96
Thanks for the compliments on my lyrics by the way. I believe Demonize stands out as a decently mastered track compared to the rest, if you'll mind the attempt at a hidden track(which leads into A.C.I.D) I would appreciate any recording tips, and as for right now I think the metronome will help the most.


Metronome and practice will definitely help. I think you should look into multitracking as well, recording two rhythm guitar tracks is, as I said, vital, and getting some rhythm guitar to back up the solos would make the whole thing sound a lot better. I still think that you need bass and drums to make decent recordings, but you can worry about that later.

Quote by WildMiles96
The next time around I will definitely spend way more time getting things done right. But,I'm easy to please and It's still cool to have a little something to show for my work and be able to hear myself for once lol. Thanks again for the comment, any other help would be greatly appreciated


Sure, as long as you're okay with it it's fine. And you have to start somewhere. If you just work on some aspects we've already discussed here you'll hopefully start to see some progress.
Quote by Jet Penguin
Theory: Not rules, just tools.

Quote by Hail
*note that by fan i mean that guy who wants his friends to know he knows this totally obscure hip band that only he knows about with 236 views on youtube. lookin' at Kev here
#5
I enjoyed the lofi aesthetic up unto the the really gainy guitar sound, I wouldn't be crazy about the vocals but I thought it was a cool turn for the verse and then into the chorus, it would have sounded better with drums and bass in my opinion. I wasn't a fan of the return to the intro around 3:30, it would have been better to do something else as it stands it kind of acts as an interruption.
Overall man, there is A LOT of potential here, I enjoyed it for what what it is! I'll definitely stay tuned for more of your work. Great job!

You can check out my music here: https://www.ultimate-guitar.com/forum/showthread.php?t=1694459
#6
Thanks a lot for the support guys. I keep in mind what you said and work on my mixing/mastering techniques. I recently read an article dealing with recording high gain guitar and the writer seemed to praise using 4 6 band eq's on the one guitar track. Seems like overkill to me, any input on that? I suppose my situation is a bit different as I'm using studio one's on board equalizer's to make things easy for my drummer in the long run
Question Everything
Gear
PRS SE 245
Schecter Solo Special
B-52 AT-100
Orange CR60
Fulltone GT-500
Morley Bad Horsie 2
Banshee Talkbox
#7
Regarding your EQ question, for people more masterful at using EQ than I am, I'm sure they could find uses for many many EQ bands on one guitar track but they'd only do so if they knew exactly what they were looking for and exactly how doing so would improve the mix. For us at home, the approach that works best for me is to try to get a sound a really like right away - so much so that I dont want to change it with an EQ. Then, later when Im working on the mix, I'll use the EQ lightly just to balance the guitar with the other instruments, not to try to improve the tone or change the sound in any way.

Now, regarding tone, for me I find that if I want to record some heavy sounding guitars, I can dial up some distortion, get a nice thick sound I like coming out of my amp, and then roll back the distortion at least by half before recording. I'm not sure I fully understand why but I find you only need a fraction of the distortion to achieve the heaviness in the mix that you would want to feel coming out of the amp. The heaviness comes from doubling up 2,4, or more tracks with small amounts of distortion than just one track with a ton of distortion. When you do one track with a ton, especially if its a digital distortion which most are now, you actually end up with a really brittle, small, and scratchy tone thats far far away from your original intention.

Anyway, I couldnt agree more with when you said "It's still cool to have a little something to show for my work and be able to hear myself for once." That pretty much sums up why I enjoy recording my music so much. Not to mention the never ending loop it creates because every time I finish something, I find things in it I know I'll do differently for next time and then I can't wait to try them out on my next song at which point I find more new techniques...you get the point. Thanks for sharing!

You can c4c my music at this link
https://www.ultimate-guitar.com/forum/showthread.php?t=1694526