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Original song "Mourning Cloak"

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quarterfront
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About a year ago there was a challenge to new (<1yr) GN members to post a recording. I did a song I'd written, using a little computer mic and mixing the two tracks down using iMovie.

So recently I got a decent mic and redid the recording, this time using Audacity to do the mix. Still leaves a bit to be desired, but I'm fairly happy with the result. Getting sound into my computer is now the weak link - I'm using an iMic external USB audio I/O and the mic preamp in it just doesn't cut the mustard.

Anyhow, I'm still pretty happy with it and thought I'd share...

Mourning Cloak

Thanks for listening!
Shane

 
Posted : 17/02/2008 2:03 am
dogbite
(@dogbite)
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thanks for posting. there are some really nice moments.

http://www.soundclick.com/bands/pagemusic.cfm?bandID=644552
http://www.soundclick.com/couleerockinvaders

 
Posted : 17/02/2008 11:56 am
hueseph
(@hueseph)
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I thought that the rhythm was absolutely beautiful. You could bring the lead back in the mix and it would not hurt it. I found the lead too up front an a little too busy. I know it's already pretty minimalist but I think the song really needs that. Bringing the lead back and adding ample reverb would give it a nice ghostly effect. Just my opinion though so take it with a grain of salt.

https://soundcloud.com/hue-nery/hue-audio-sampler

 
Posted : 19/02/2008 12:52 am
quarterfront
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hueseph -

Thanks for the input, you might be right about rolling back the lead a bit. I gave it a try last night and I'm not sure I don't like it better.

Re. putting some verb on, I'm not in much of a position to try that out right now - I did run it through a verb recording it, but the software I'm using (Audacity) doesn't have a verb filter that I can run on the track. To do more verb I'd need to find a filter or just re-record the whole shebang.

I did use some verb on it, but when I was recording I rolled it back, and maybe too much. I like lots of verb, and the pedal I'm using (Line 6 Verbzilla) has a really nice "Cave" setting that can produce a very haunting sound. When I started out I had it way up but it was getting muddy so I rolled it off. Maybe a happy medium is where I need to be heading....

Speaking of re-recording, odds are I'll record at least the lead track for this song at least one more time down the road - I'm working through the learning curve on setting up a little home studio and I still have some kinks to work through before I'll be satisfied with my setup. Next time around I'll give your verb idea a listen when I set it up.

Anyhow, thanks for listening, and for the kind words which are very encouraging.

Shane

 
Posted : 19/02/2008 2:07 pm
hueseph
(@hueseph)
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Do yourself a favor. Download Asio4all and Kristal Audio Engine.

http://asio4all.com/
http://www.kreatives.org/kristal/

Both are free. Kristal will give you so many better options than Audacity. Audacity is fine for stereo editing but even then it does not allow you to use real time effects. Kristal does and supports VST plugins.

When you've installed Kristal go and do a search for Free VSTs and you will find at least a dozen or so free reverb plugins and multitudes of other plugins that you may never use(but are fun to have). Kjaerhaus' "classic" plugins are great to start with. There are better plugins out there but these are a good place to start.

https://soundcloud.com/hue-nery/hue-audio-sampler

 
Posted : 19/02/2008 2:22 pm
Gerry
(@gerry)
Posts: 441
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That rhythm guitar picking is superb and sadly the lead guitar doesn't do it justice. This track has so much potential so please take my critism as well meaning. Your melody deserves better and I would try playing less on the lead as its screaming for gently well picked meaningful notes. Less in this case would really be more.

You have some magic going on here so you get my sincere congratulations. Now polish the diamond :wink:

Gerry

Those who can't dance always blame the band.

http://www.gerrycooper.com/

 
Posted : 19/02/2008 3:51 pm
quarterfront
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Gerry, thanks for the input. I agree, my lead playing is a weak spot, with a ways to go. I like the melody I've come up with a lot, but need to execute it more cleanly. My bends don't always land where they ought to and I'm still trying to find a tone I like.

I tried doing the song with a fuzz box and that was all wrong; acoustic seems sort of right, but there are places where I really want trem and wide bends; etc... etc... etc....

All of that said, your advice about "gently well picked meaningful notes" applies no matter where I end up going with any other aspect of the lead. Well said, and thanks for the advice.

Also, thanks for the positive comments and encouragement which are much appreciated.

Best,
Shane

 
Posted : 21/02/2008 2:16 pm
Ignar Hillström
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I copy with everything is said above, but mostly agree that this track has a lot of potential, the backing guitar is really beautifull and very well executed. I dont mind the lead track that much but maybe I listened to too much fruscianti. :P Anyway, good show, keep on working and I'm confident we'll hear lots of great tracks from you!

 
Posted : 21/02/2008 2:28 pm
Mike
 Mike
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Good stuff Shane! You have a good solid foundation to be proud of. You'll probably mess with the lead, trying to get it "perfect", for some time but, I don't think it's too bad as is. I think Gerry is right about the "less is more" comment though. You don't always need to fill the air space, besides, it adds a building/antisapation to a track, which I think happens to add character. All personal opinion though.

Look forward to hearing more, keep up the good work!

 
Posted : 21/02/2008 3:24 pm
cnev
 cnev
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Shane,

Excellent... like everyone else said the rhythm is fantastic and you've been playing how long? A couple years? Wow!!

I'm sure you'll find a lead that puts this over the top.

"It's all about stickin it to the man!"
It's a long way to the top if you want to rock n roll!

 
Posted : 21/02/2008 3:40 pm
97reb
(@97reb)
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Nice, reminds me of the more mellow Opeth songs from recent albums and of course a bit of one of Mikael's inspirations, Camel. You've got the the "melodic" part down well.

It is a small world for metal fanatics. I welcome you fellow musicians, especially the metalheads!

 
Posted : 23/02/2008 12:47 am
quarterfront
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Okay, so I reworked the lead a bit. I tried to simplify the line, particularly the first time through the verse and the chorus, so that it can develop the second and third times through.

I also mixed it down a bit trying to get to where the lead doesn't overwhelm the rhythm.

My lead playing still has a long way to go and I've vowed not to work on recording this song any more for a year and do something else instead.

Anyway, thanks to all who gave me input on this as I try to ride up a learning curve. Here's a link to the new version:

Mourning Cloak - second mix

Best,
Shane

 
Posted : 25/02/2008 2:36 am
hueseph
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Posts: 1543
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It's getting there man. Can I make some suggestions? Please take it with a grain of salt. I think what could really help is if you try incorporating some slides and subtle hammer-ons and pull offs in there to soften the impact. Trills are fine but the transitions between notes really create a lot of the feel. No matter how you do it, picking a note will always sound "harder" than a hammer-on or a pull-off. Just some thoughts.

https://soundcloud.com/hue-nery/hue-audio-sampler

 
Posted : 25/02/2008 4:55 am