A technical support community for Apple Logic Pro users.

 
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in.name.only
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I'd appreciate your critique

Sun May 23, 2021 7:17 pm

Hi All, I'd really appreciate your critical ears on my production and mixing. It's done in Logic and is all midi apart from the vocals. I've been doing the soundgym mixing course and this is my first effort, so be kind but be honest and any advice would be gratefully accepted. Thank you :thumbup:

https://soundcloud.com/in_name_only/natasha/s-tJiitoUwoO3
Logic Pro X 10.4.4
Mac Mini (Late 2014) 2.6 GHz Intel Core i5 - 8 GB 1600 MHz DDR3
MacOS High Sierra 10.13.6
 
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Atlas007
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Re: I'd appreciate your critique

Mon May 24, 2021 9:00 pm

Profane critique here:

The overall sounds pretty good.

The different instruments are well defined (no muddiness), their balance position is well thought of, although a tiny bit obvious.

The vocal need some tonal correction at the beginning of the song (mainly before.the first chorus).

The whole mix would probably benefit from some gluing technique (a shared reverb, with some compression perhaps) as the various instruments appear as not forming a global ensemble but an overdub work in some places.

The vocal chorus sounds great but back vocal should not appear to compete with the main vocal; thus they should be laid back in the mix.
I understand that would probably hinder (partly) the nice widening stereo spread they create, though.

The choice of better sounding cello, violin and solo instruments (at the end) would improve their rendered performance, especially if used with more natural expression.

Since the song is of ballad type, I think that the drum at the song’s outro should fade out or be less prominent.

Perhaps the repetition of the chorus could be (more) gradual in intensity. The first one pops out quite strong (a tad too loud), I feel.

All in all, I think you have here something really worthwhile to polish.

I monitored your song from my PC (Windows 10 computer)'s sound system (Realtek high def Audio) with Sony earphones (MDR-210).
LogicPro 10.6.3, MainStage3.5.3
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in.name.only
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Re: I'd appreciate your critique

Mon May 24, 2021 9:27 pm

There’s some really helpful stuff there for me to think about, Atlas. Thank you so much for taking the time to listen and comment.
Logic Pro X 10.4.4
Mac Mini (Late 2014) 2.6 GHz Intel Core i5 - 8 GB 1600 MHz DDR3
MacOS High Sierra 10.13.6
 
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Danny Wyatt
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Re: I'd appreciate your critique

Fri May 28, 2021 4:41 am

Here's my honest opinion and not trying to be "rude" or cold, because I know we all start one day :)
Aside from the mixing aspect, because that's something that takes time and experience, if I were you I would focus more on the arrangement itself, picking the best sounds and especially, making it sound less "robotic" and computer-y. All melodies and patterns sound very straight, without flow. If you close your eyes and focus on the violins for example, try to SEE a real person playing it and you will quickly see that it sounds unnatural and therefore, gives the sound a very cold and not exciting vibe. Does that make sense?

I think one of the biggest mistakes a lot of people make is thinking that the last steps of a song are the ones that will make it great, for example thinking that mastering will make it go from 60% to 99% in quality. The same with mixing. If the song itself is not exciting, you can mix it for days and use the best gear (digital or analog), but it will not really touch people.

So yeah, I would go back and focus on making the song exciting, even if the mix sucks. Make it balanced enough when it comes to volume, at least. If a great song is at least balanced volume-wise, you're already ahead of most songs out there :)

Think about this: if you're on the subway and an amazing artist is playing a $50 guitar and singing without a microphone, doesn't it make you stop, just because the vibe of the song and the playing and singing skills of the artist really make it shine? So it all starts with the song, the melodies, the patterns, the groove, the silence/space, the natural dynamics of the song (one section with 1 instrument and then another one with 7 instruments). Stuff like that. Before you even reach out to an EQ or compressor or reverb, the song needs to excite you and the listeners. Everything else will be there to just enhance what's already there ;)

Hope it makes sense and hope it helps. Keep experimenting, keep making more and more music, that's the only way to improve. And asking for feedback is not only a very humble step, but a way for you to keep gathering more information from other people with other levels of expertise and other perspectives. Go for it!!!
• Logic Pro X 10.4.6 • M-Audio Fast Track Pro 4x4
• MacBook Pro mid 2010 • macOS High Sierra 10.13.6 • 2.4 GHz Intel Core i5 • 8 GB 1067 MHz DDR3

-----------------------------------------
Danny Wyatt (formerly known as 3ple) - Musician and Music Producer
http://www.iamdannywyatt.com (links to all my social media included)
 
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Mikey 3000
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Re: I'd appreciate your critique

Sat May 29, 2021 9:22 am

This is a purely subjective opinion, so you can of course ignore it if you don't agree. And all my production tips come from an arranger's perspective – if you get the basic sounds right, the engineer's job gets a lot easier!

It's all about the song - which in your case is good. it's got a great mood and it really works.

For me, the string sounds are a little thin though, which you could address by softening the EQ, adding a warmer analog synth behind them , and / or swapping out the sample altogether.

Also, and I appreciate that this might feel a bit personal, I think the pitching of the vocal is a shade off here and there. Not a mile – making a low-level duplicate of the track and running it through an autotune plugin ought to pull it back in.

Last thing – I think the beat would sit more nicely with the track if you added an analog echo with plenty of Hi Cut on it to make it cook a little more.

It'd be worth making those changes, I'd say, because the core idea is sound and the track has a nice vibe.

Those small tweaks would be worth it.
 
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in.name.only
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Re: I'd appreciate your critique

Tue Jun 01, 2021 12:43 pm

Danny and Mikey, thank you both so much for taking the time to listen to and comment on my song. I originally started the song as something very simple to practice mixing more than the production. Unfortunately as I was working I kept adding extra layers of strings. I cant really afford decent Kontakt stuff so I just used Logic's Studio Strings - and I think I overstretched Studio Strings, or rather overstretched my ability to make multiple tracks of Studio Strings sound good. So I completely understand what you've said about the strings. You've both given me some really helpful feedback. Thanks again
Logic Pro X 10.4.4
Mac Mini (Late 2014) 2.6 GHz Intel Core i5 - 8 GB 1600 MHz DDR3
MacOS High Sierra 10.13.6
 
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Mikey 3000
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Re: I'd appreciate your critique

Wed Jun 09, 2021 12:26 pm

There are some nice free string sounds to be had from Spitfire Audio. Either their Labs stuff or they offer a really nice taster pack if you sign up.
 
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in.name.only
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Re: I'd appreciate your critique

Sat Jun 26, 2021 3:04 pm

Thanks Mikey, I got Labs and also just got the BBC symphony orchestra that you have to wait for. It sounds way better than Studio strings. Might see how it sounds on this song if I get the chance.
Logic Pro X 10.4.4
Mac Mini (Late 2014) 2.6 GHz Intel Core i5 - 8 GB 1600 MHz DDR3
MacOS High Sierra 10.13.6
 
MikeRobinson
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Re: I'd appreciate your critique

Sun Jun 27, 2021 9:52 am

I also wonder if you quantized some things out of habit – particularly the strings. If so, consider removing the quantization from certain parts or sections. Natural performances have slight variations in note timing, attack ("velocity"), duration, and tempo. When people "play together," they don't all hit the same note at the exact same millisecond. ("Humanize" filters can help with this sort of thing.)
Mike Robinson
"I wanna quit being a computer consultant and become a composer and arranger at age fifty-nevermind."
Logic Pro X, MacBook Pro, 88-key MIDI controller.
Just south of Chattanooga, Tennessee, USA
 
Secret Service
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Re: I'd appreciate your critique

Sun Jun 27, 2021 10:41 am

I have the feeling the piano is in the beginning to late. In this tempo is good to have them a little bit late, but I tink it's too much. The Solo Vocals are to quiet. I would make every thing quieter what is not piano and vocals, and the drums. The drums are not played like a drummer.
The vocals and the piano is that what I would focus more, cause that is the personal thing in the song. Some corrections best with Melodyne. I'm curious how it sounds later.