First demo + feedback needed

And now: something conpletely different (I suppose :smile: )

First a little background: I’m a classically schooled musician, I play trumpet / flugelhorn / cornet (ca. 20y) and piano (ca. 5y). Much of my time and experiences involve wind orchestra, fanfare and brass band.
Lately I’ve been trying to find my way in home recording and mixing.

The following song is my very first attempt at recording (overdubbing) and mixing a song (WIP still).
It’s a Brass Band arrangement of “(I Dreamt I Dwelt) In Marble Halls” from the 1843 opera “The Bohemian Girl”, recorded with Ardour and Mixbus32C but mixing done in Mixbus32C.

Link: In Marble Halls

Equipment used:

  • Rode NT1-A (condenser)
  • MOTU M4 interface
  • Roland FP-30 (synth pad, celesta+bell pad, acc. bass, marimba, vibraphone)
  • Yamaha PSR-280 (Cello)
  • Yamaha Xeno trumpet
  • Van Laar flugelhorn
  • Besson soprano cornet

Plugins used:

  • Calf transient designer
  • ACE Delay, Compressor
  • LSP Sidechain Compressor
  • XT-GV GVerb+
  • C* PlateX2
  • Mixbus EQ & Compressor

Any feedback on mix & music is most welcome ! If there are people here who have experience with recording brass instruments (or wind orchestra, compositions…), I’d really appreciate if you could share some knowledge.


PS - I’m aware that there are some tuning and timing issues left. Try to ignore these for now :stuck_out_tongue:

A few things strike me:

  • sounds better than my first efforts
  • things stop rather suddenly after “a high ancestral name”
  • there’s a lot of space from side to side, but
  • there is less feeling of space from front to back. Which leads to things feeling a little crowded when the arrangement gets thicker.
  • which may be exacerbated by everything being similarly loud.

It’s hard to make suggestions without knowing exactly what you are doing where. (Maybe the pros will be able to reverse engineer it with their ears; I can’t.)

1 Like

Thanks for the comment :slight_smile:

Regarding the front-to-back space: I guess I need to review my reverbs and experiment with the pre-delay dry/wet settings a bit ? Right now it’s just 1 long reverb (instr.) + 1 short reverb (lead voices) bus using a preset and a tiny bit of plate on the master. Hmmm probably needs some more filtering as well :sweat_smile:

The guidance I’ve found so far is:

  • Longer pre-delay, more lows and highs and less middle, less reverb: sounds closer.
  • Shorter pre-delay, more middle and less low and high, more reverb: sounds further away.
  • Reverb bus should be 100% wet, dry/wet balance adjusted by the level of the sends and by the bus fader.

I’ve found it useful to use aux busses to apply different EQ and delay for different “layers” of instruments and then feed everything into a single bus to provide the actual reverb. A second layer of reverb can provide extra ear candy but can also make it harder to keep things under control.

There are no doubt other things to consider and other ways of doing things… As usual.