• What a PIA mix. I had 3 main challenges to do on this and it took me a long while. 1) Get as much thump out of the kick before distorting the speakers while not muddying up the bass. 2) Get as much sustained bass out of the bass track without muddying up the kick, and allowing some of that top end fingering attack to come through. 3) Try to get a single solo-rhythm tone out of my Jackson KillStrat by not switching to any distortion pedals, boosts, or modulation effects, and not do any double tracking.


    #3 was (and still is) really hard. I like a tight low end for rhythm but if it's too tight then the solo notes get too chimey and the mids get this "coke bottle" harmonic effect. I was able to leave some sponginess on the low end and keep the solo part warmer but with a lot of EQing. I used Choptones Brit 2KT6 23 profile that he posted for free.


    I'm not quite there yet but feel I got to 90% of what I wanted to do. So I am dumping this tune off on you for now. I hope the gang chimes in. Thanks!


    The more you find what Kemper can do then the harder you try to find what it cannot do -- like make a good cup of Frappuccino.

  • Sounds horrible on my headphones. I must have screwed the EQ up on the guitar track. This one is pissing me off. I'm going to retrack the guitar. I still like the drums and bass though.

    The more you find what Kemper can do then the harder you try to find what it cannot do -- like make a good cup of Frappuccino.

  • Good driving track and good progress. I can hear what you're getting at.


    The bass gets lost in the mix on smaller speakers. A great trick I only learned myself the other day when mixing is to turn the volume way down till it's really quiet and you have to strain to hear everything. Then mix from that point to make sure you hear everything you want to hear. Then when you bring it back up you should be in a much happier place that will translate well to other systems.


    I would say for me the thing that's holding you back right now is the reliance on the chorus pedal. It's a cool sound but it inherently masks and detunes your guitar so it will always sound out of tune (just the nature of chorus/phaser/flangers because they delay and pitch adjust the signal before mixing it back in). If you turn it off and the reverb then just have the delay on there I really think you will be happier with the result and have less difficulty mixing because it will fit in the space better rather than trying to fill it all up before you've got your drums and bass in there.

  • ...

    The bass gets lost in the mix on smaller speakers. A great trick I only learned myself the other day when mixing is to turn the volume way down till it's really quiet and you have to strain to hear everything.

    ...

    That's what happen! I was mixing bass and drum at low volume but I kept the volume low when I mixed the guitar (mistake). So when I spread out the stereo delay more and made one side more wet to fattened up the sound, the guitar sounded like I wanted at that low volume but I didn't check at higher volume until after this rendering. It gets more thin and blah chorusy at the higher volume. What a dumbass mistake.


    I just listened to the tune at low volume on my speakers just now and it sounded pretty decent until I turned it up. I feel better since you call out the problem.


    I wrote that tune specifically to try and make an all-in-one profile where you can either solo with it or play rhythm with it without touching any guitar volume or clicking on a pedal. So I will continue to test on it until I make it happen. Thanks always for your help Per!

    The more you find what Kemper can do then the harder you try to find what it cannot do -- like make a good cup of Frappuccino.

  • I see you're back on tracking, it's a long way ahead but a very nice journey for sure.


    If I may add some ideas : I noticed is that you play rhythm lines with delay engaged , also affecting the groove, I'd stay dry all along PM parts and keep the delay for legato lines.


    I noticed a few notes off beat around 0:55 for instance , it's too bad because it also affects the whole groove. I'd focus on the drums by tracking until they make a clear duet with the guitars., it's far more important than tone & mix

    It doesn't require much , but practice everyday against a drumbeat , again & again . Try enhancing syncopated riffs , PM and muted notes, rhythm chokes and all that sort of staccato stuff. This is mandatory to become a good guitarist & musician, once you have it it's for all your life and junior guitarists seem to bypass this practice too fast, trying melodic lines and solo line. This is counter productive as you can make a killer groove with just muted strings.


    As with bass, muting is more important than notes eventually , silence is what makes the groove.

  • Thanks MuddySludge! I'm staying with it but even more aggravated than yesterday. I retried the guitar track with just delay as Per suggests and now my high notes sound like a wah is engaged even after cutting out the mids. I think I am pushing myself too much.


    Thanks waraba! Yes, I am fumbling the bass guitar. I could just EZBass it ,but I want to learn some bass so I can at least communicate with a bassist without looking like an idiot. I need much more practice on that.


    I can't get strong deep palm mutes on a floyd rose like I can on a hardtail. I am not sure if it is my technique or a limit of the floyd bridge??

    The more you find what Kemper can do then the harder you try to find what it cannot do -- like make a good cup of Frappuccino.

  • Update: I got it sounding 10x better! The guitar tone is nearly perfect. Much closer to watch I envisioned in my head. I just tried a different profile (same guitar). Then I shifted the stereo guitar left of center and killed some of the right delay. I shifted the bass right of center to keep it outside the center kick, and I re-adjust bass-to-kick volumes at a much lower volume. I would like to redo the fumbling bass track tomorrow and repost the update.


    Then I can move on and mess up some new tracks for you.

    The more you find what Kemper can do then the harder you try to find what it cannot do -- like make a good cup of Frappuccino.

  • Sounds great BayouTexan Your definitely getting the hang of the mixing/mastering thing.

    Thanks Joe! but it sounds like poo-poo. I haven't posted the fixed mix yet but it's almost done. (I'm trying to get my rhythm to sound smooth like yours where the strings blend more smoothly together without any harshness). I had go through several profiles until I found one that worked without get those wah-ish overtones. I'll tag you when I post the new version.

    The more you find what Kemper can do then the harder you try to find what it cannot do -- like make a good cup of Frappuccino.

  • Thanks Joe! but it sounds like poo-poo. I haven't posted the fixed mix yet but it's almost done. (I'm trying to get my rhythm to sound smooth like yours where the strings blend more smoothly together without any harshness). I had go through several profiles until I found one that worked without get those wah-ish overtones. I'll tag you when I post the new version.

    Lol, don't put yourself down, looking forward to hearing the new version

  • Update: I am so happy to be done with this! I did single guitar track. Dry on left channel with just a small amount of harmonizer. Full Wet on right channel with reverb and delay. This was a PIA to balance the 3 to stereo. So , I used a different profile than original and just added the TS OD to help tighten up the low end. I practiced better palm-muting on this version.


    I decided to do a parallel path on the Kemper bass profile to help me smooth out the lows and add a bit of distortion on bass. Drums are the same. I just cleaned up some fills.


    This is soooo damn close to the sound in my head of what I heard when writing this originally. I could probably spend another few weeks tweaking the mix but it's time to move on to new material and expectations. I think I could make this my "big boy" tone with a bit more work. I wanted to have a lead/rhythm profile where I could go from one to the other without changing any parameters, clicking on effects, or using the volume knob. I think I am almost there!


    Curious what you guitar think on the guitar, bass, and drums. Does the low end of the bass need more balance? Etc.


    The more you find what Kemper can do then the harder you try to find what it cannot do -- like make a good cup of Frappuccino.

  • Mix is fantastically much better than before! Great job, keep at it.


    Here’s my notes YMMV


    Bass could still come a lot further forward. My formula for bass - put the fader to unity, add an eq (I like a pultec style because it’s super simple) and then bring down the bass itself all the way, throw a compressor on , I like either a LA2A or 1176 because you have a control to hi-pass the carrier signal and what I’m looking to do is even out the audible portion of the signal not have the low boom kill that, then it’s time to bring up the treble. I use a twin tube processor which accentuates harmonics, but you can also just slap a post compressor eq and bring up what you want there. I then adjust for level against the drums (listen for how the kick competes with it) and finally I adjust the first EQ’s bass subtly till it’s just giving me warmth and volume I want leaving the level exactly where it is.


    With regards guitar sound I now think I get what you’re after, to me it feels like you’re aiming for 80s hair rock. The key there was less chorus (except on clean) more flanger and only on specific runs (check out how Paul Gilbert uses it on Technical Difficulties, or EVH on Panama). Check out the “TAF - hello 1980z” profile on the exchange, might be closer to what you’re after.

    One thing that stands out right now is what feels like timing difficulty. There’s three solutions for this and all are equally valid.


    - The first is of course practice till you nail it, play with a backing track slow and slowly raise the speed then bring it back down, remember to always play with feel, if you find you can’t then you’re going too fast!


    - Play a simplified version of the riff, keeping the key rhythmic points. No one but you knows the complete riff, so they won’t know if you skip a few flourish notes, at the end of the day any riff is about from and to. Do those two notes right on the beat, identify the transition notes that matter, make sure they are on point, then anything else is gravy.


    - Record at a slower rate than at playback. No-one is going to know, for tracks there’s no such thing as cheating! You want it to sound as good as possible as recorded.


    In the end rhythmic feel is more important than note accuracy. People remember the rythm of a riff more than the notes. Think dah dah dah daaaaaa (Beethoven 5th).

  • I have plenty new material to try out your suggestions next. My wife suggest something "softer" and slower on the next one. I was working the neck pickup with a Vox AC profile today and felt like I nailed in a tone that would really be nice for a new mix.


    I am way more happier after today than the last several weeks. I really feel I am getting close to getting those 3 sounds right (guitar, bass, drums) and translating sound from my mind's ear to the speaker. I do realize that more practice with chord transitions and technique will help me to get a better tone and enjoy the Kemper better. I started mixing with a click track in DAW with the drums and bass, and then stopped to track only against the drums, but I returned to the click track addition for this mix. I am going to keep doing that.


    Yes, maybe 80's tone style but something new and different no one has heard is what I am after. As for Paul Gilbert, he is like a science professor for guitar. LOL. He's got a lot of knowledge over my head.


    Thanks for your help as always! I'm back to having fun. :)

    The more you find what Kemper can do then the harder you try to find what it cannot do -- like make a good cup of Frappuccino.

  • Great improvement in tones & play , I'm glad you worked on PM & rhythm as I suggested , I can definitely hear major improvement in the tightness of your PM and power chords. You're close to an achievement where PM & syncopes become written in muscle memory and whatever you play will sound natural. Working against the drum is the best exercice , I'd go on practicing each day , at this pace you'll acquire rhythm mastery in no time .


    Tone wise , it was great to use the chorus & delay in leads & cleans only , bass and drums are clearly audible and guitar is in front , it's a clear mix and not that busy. Adding warmth would certainly help , but it it's really a personal matter and something you learn on the long distance.


    I'd save all the presets mix , chains and templates for future use & automation.

  • Sounds excellent, this mix is a definite improvement in overall tone, brillinat job. And your choice of profiles here is great too.


    The only thing i'd add to what Per and waraba have mentioned is the very minor timing parts and to be honest this purely comes down to just playing guitar as often as you can and playing along with metronomes and drums. My timing definitely isn't the best but what i have found is that when i write a tune, the groove has a huge impact. I've recorded ideas over drum parts that just didn't sound right, both were in the same BPM but the groove of the guitar and drums didn't really sync. I generally never write playing along with drums or with drum parts in mind, i just jam on guitar and see what comes out. Once i've stumbled across something i think is good enough i'll develop the idea and then think about recording it. The first thing i do when i go to record is find a BPM and drum beat that fits the groove of the idea. I find once i find that i am off and running. The groove doesn't have to be 100% but just enough to make your music idea flow.


    I'm looking forward to hearing your next tune.