Gold Tone Studio's Blog

A blog about our recording studio and mixing engineer services in Brighton and Hove, UK

• Tips and Tricks #11: The Haas Effect.

Published on 11th April 2019

• Tips and Tricks #10: Fades in Logic Pro X.

Published on 25th March 2019

• Tips and Tricks #9: Change up your environment.

Published on 25th February 2019

• Tips and Tricks #8: Using Note pad and pictures in Logic Pro X

Published on 4th February 2019

• Tips and Tricks #7: Reference tracks and analysing them

Published on 28th January 2019

• Tips and Tricks #6: Zeroing plugins and saving as presets

Published on 21st January 2019

• Tips and Tricks #5. Take a break!!!!

Published on 23rd December 2018

• Tips and Tricks #4. Incorporating outboard using the I/O plugin inside Logic Pro X

Published on 17th December 2018

• Tips and Tricks #3. Bouncing sections from Logic Pro X

Published on 10th December 2018

• Tips and Tricks #2. Turning your Juno 60 into a fat monosynth

Published on 6th December 2018

• Tips and Tricks #1. Creating custom Plug In folders in Logic Pro X

Published on 28th November 2018

• Clarity

Let me be clear...

The art of mixing is all about giving the myriad of various elements in any given track clarity. It's like doing a 3D jigsaw puzzle, but with no picture on the box to work from, and no box.

That is where the art comes into it.

A mixing engineer listens to all these elements, decides which tell the story and which ones create the tone, then places them in the relevant places in the soundfield. An example: Recently, I was given the same track to mix as Erin Tonkin (who mixed David Bowies final album Blackstar) and our mixes of the same track couldn't have been more different. Her vision of what the track was to become was really quite different to how I heard it and at the end of the process, it is the artist who decides which one is to their taste, but it is entirely subjective. On this occasion, I got it right, but it could have gone the other way and my vision for the track could have been too safe/too avant garde or just rubbish.

It is worth remembering that the process of mixing your tracks is as creative and as necessary to the process as arrangement, instrumentation and lyrics in order to achieve the clarity your message needs to reach its audience, so choose an engineer who can give you that.

Published on 9th October 2018

• All the Gear

Choices. We make a million choices everyday. How do you know any of them are right?

It certainly used to be the case that your creative decisions were dictated to by what instruments and equipment you had to hand, and could make some sort of coherent noise with. Then the quality of the recordings were dictated by what you had to record them with and the knowledge to which to capture them.
In a modern studio, we can recreate almost any instrument using software, we have limitless editing facilities and all this leads to limitless choices, but does this lead to limitless merit?

No.

It is our job, as engineers and producers to listen to the client and to carefully pick what sounds, instruments and effects they need to help them create their art, to limit choices and to help find creative solutions within those limitations.
Instead of offering everything, like Amazon, we have to refine what we offer in order to serve our client, which seems counter-intuitive.

But if we don’t, we will most likely drown our clients in sound.

Published on 5th October 2018

• Learning to Fail (and being OK with that)

Recording audio at Gold Tone Brighton
I guess most people don’t like getting things wrong.

I imagine the fear of failure is what drives the majority of people to fall into comfortable routines where failure is unlikely, successes, however small, are easily achievable and there is some sort of fairly well signposted route to that success.

Music and the process of making music falls outside of that realm. Its like making a jigsaw puzzle without a defined amount of pieces, a picture to follow or a box to keep it all in. There is no way of knowing for sure when you have finished, or, if anyone even cares you have made a jigsaw in the first place.Failure lurks round every corner, trying its best to ruin your mood and stifle your enthusiasm, from creating ideas to finding an outlet for your work, failure is right there, all the time.
But music thrives on failure, because it is the mistakes that lead to better things, from learning an instrument to writing a song, to feedback from a client or a harsh review from a fan. It’s a process of constantly making mistakes, so that you learn from each one.
In fact, it could be best to make a shit tonne of mistakes, then you are really learning.

That’s what I’m doing, but I’m getting better all the time…

Published on 28th September 2018