Overview + thoughts
Benji and I have known each other for about 4 years now and he always was into music and wanted to make his own. In school we scratched the surface of mixing and I really liked it and wanted to continue learning about it so for the last three to four years I am trying to teach myself how to mix and master using free online resources. And since then I mixed and mastered nearly every Benji song and we both improve with every single song.
The work on Saturn Season started around August 2019 and until the release it was a really intense time working on it. Benji really got super perfectionist and sometimes replaced his parts 5 or 6 times because of one word and switched microphones half way throught so we had to rerecord and re-mix nearly everything done to this day. And as much as it sometimes annoyed me it really was worth all the effort and every single little change had to be made.
Album / Instrumentals on Spotify
Mixing / Mastering
As an example for my mixing and mastering process I chose to show my mixing and mastering chain of „Moonfall – Interstellar“. Benji did all his vocal tuning himself so on the vocal track I just put on a gate and a vocal rider to flatten out the levels. Then I send the main vocals as well as the double vocals to an aux, here „Bus 10“. There I did my main vocal processing. I did it this way because if he wanted to tweak his vocal and replace it, I just have to drag it in and send it to the bus and don’t have to struggle with copying plugins and stuff. And I was also able to send multiple tracks to the same aux bus.
On the bus I started with and EQ, deesser, first compression, second compression, another EQ, 2 Pultec EQs for the crispy and airy sound boosting 4khz and 10khz, deesser, saturation, another deesser and the final EQ. I send the signals to bus 1 to 3 to apply reverb and delay. Using two different reverbs gives me more flexibility in shaping the sound. The compressors on the delay bus are used to duck the signal of the vocals is playing using it as a sidechain. All my tracks go to the mixbus where I do final EQ, a bit of compression, tape saturation and console emulation.
I always export my mixes and master in another file. The mastering chain starts with a master compression, again 2 Pultec EQs but this time one for the low end and one for the top end. Lastly I use Ozone for the final mastering. I have two instances here because I did seperate masters for streaming and CD.