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Toontrack presents: Studio Pass

Lesson 23 of 26

Mixing Blazing Star Part 2

Ulrich Wild, Brendon Small

Toontrack presents: Studio Pass

Ulrich Wild, Brendon Small

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Lesson Info

23. Mixing Blazing Star Part 2


  Class Trailer
Now Playing
1 Class Introduction Duration:06:20
4 Songwriting Q&A Duration:26:32
5 Tracking and Comping Drums Duration:27:24
6 Editing Drums Duration:16:25
7 Drums Q&A Duration:31:15
8 Micing an Amplifier Duration:25:09
9 Rhythm Guitar Tones Duration:18:52
10 Tracking Rhythm Guitars Duration:34:13
11 Tracking Bass Guitar Duration:23:34
12 Bass Q&A Duration:21:45
13 General Q&A Duration:16:30
  Class Trailer
Now Playing
1 Tracking Vocals Duration:18:27
3 Vocal Mixing on Galaktikon Duration:24:37
4 Vocals Q&A Duration:17:50
5 Mix Prep Duration:34:45
6 Mixing in Logic Pro Duration:42:03
7 Mixing Blazing Star Part I Duration:27:14
10 Mixing Blazing Star Part 2 Duration:19:34
11 Mixing Blazing Star with EQ Duration:30:09
12 Final Q&A Duration:24:12
13 Closing Thoughts Duration:11:22

Lesson Info

Mixing Blazing Star Part 2

So here we are with you before this last break, we covered basically the rhythm section of this song blazing star and that's where I want o pick up on this one on dive right in, as you can see, uh, we have to different rhythm guitar portions of the first half of the song in the second half of the song I'm guessing it's because this second half of the song is based on is that the end of the whole, the the doom star requiem there's a whole sequence that I thought this is going to be the second half of this, the single so what I'm doing when I when I put this on together is that I wanted to have a single a death clock single in this whole project in this whole record because it's the rest the record is a rock up with characters singing in some in many different styles of music in some very real show tune style moments, some well, kind of like a, um, ridiculous seventies singer songwriter re kind of like ten cc ish kind of needs. I don't know what I just saw anything what's that michael ja...

ckson, michael jackson kind of moments himself is very inspired, but I want to be starting something in thriller, um, and lots of different stuff, and again, just kind of again a rock opera style movements and then just musical so there was nothing like this except for the last part so I wanted it kind of put this song together make it feel like one full thing and an end big just like the show and speaking and I wanted people to listen to the whole record and then listen to this song that kind of recaps what we just saw and reminds you of what you saw and then and is a song about what you just saw and comments on in some way and then finishes in a big cool way with an orchestra with a band with everything so that's where we were and that's why you see two distinct rhythm guitar yes tracks from two different sessions from two different sessions because this one was literally played on the other song and flown into this one and the drums were played through uh and but andi think the base was played through, but we used this section of the base actually on the other song perhaps is that I make but I think that's all better I think better got a copy of this whole thing and then re you know and I know we played based on this, but I'm I think I need to put a different may just earlier beller base on the other song because it was the other song was was this this piece of music that may very well? Do you think some don't make sense? You know what? Whatever that maybe this is what's happening here so you can see that these guitars were not recorded the same time? Um and they had to be e q just slightly differently. This is the top track, and this is this one here I could very well have used two different amps. I could very well are, like, a clean happen, a distortion pedal, which sometimes I'll do, but I think whatever, yeah, so you had to make sure that they had a similar issue, that they were, that the end result would sound similar it's not the same on which means that the q possibly would be different when you could see that it is a little bit to accommodate whatever difference it wass, um, we, you know, ended up changing the low end a little bit below, uh, you know, the low frequency in the mid to low mids have just a little tweak to to even things out, the idea being that you wouldn't be able to tell that the guitar changes right there on the first time we've done that, you know, the first time, uh, on purpose or on accident, uh, whatever it may be always an accident but yes not the first time but so having moving on into the mix now the you know the rhythm section it's kind of established and read we worked our way around at least one vocal a little bit let's see what some of these lead guitar sound like you can see some decisions were made that we don't need uh too much for the lead could turn the beginning because I think probably because we wanted the orchestra to take that space I think we've put more gets hard one guitar less orchestra the second one we swapped positions when this there's a the opening kind of stop timepiece features more of the band the second feature's more of the orchestra the third one blends them together a little bit more and then slowly punches in a new guitar harmony with skwisgaar and toki when they're standing in the star is playing guitar together united last um but uh yeah you want to hear some of this stuff I mean I've got some I've got some stuff that I faded and I had a cool idea but some of it you know you have teo you have to favor some ideas over others but I think I have some some some there's some fadi first verse with the vocal I think I've got and uh wherever that is this thing here maybe um it's over that kind of ah staccato eat they didn't do the data thing uh I was just going to play this uh this lead guitar real quick and see what this sounds like on bone dry um yeah, we were fading that in you can see there's a girl yeah, so there's a little bit that happening over the first verse when nathan is singing on but we uh you know, I had to compress and cue that thing a little bit so you're looking at that we have, you know way actually probably triple compressed this thing because compressions funds your friend you know, if you do it with uh you know, with some kind of plan I guess so a cz you can see I lose used the same plug in a lot not because I'm lazy but because I like it um you want to be so defensive no one's everyone's on your side fine um and so you know like it's it's better for for several compressors to do a little bit of lifting then for one compressor to do too much work and let's see what this thing does what it sounds like it's hard to operate on the small screen here but we'll make it stay with us on dry but you can see it's a little more even now let's get a little more bite to it it's ah you khun there's there's no real dynamic fluctuation anymore because it's really it's it's fighting against the rhythm guitars and the vocals and they're already on but we have some effects on there using that that same ah spreader again to just to find it up just a little bit uh this is probably a delay story a delay that would be uh you know your delay we have ah phaser on here is well but that's probably for a section that isthe elsewhere that way faced a section somewhere didn't we um yeah right there right here towards the end okay, wait listen to that track with the with the guitar really good you know it's it's uh wait it's a lot of stuff but I mean the way I think of it is if even if I have because those rhythm guitars are identical playing panned hard left and right and then I have this thing on top of it so the way I think about if if I try to think how would it band play this live as as this kind of being arranged and I think, well one guy could probably be doing the kind of dude didn't data do that arpeggio anything versus somebody who's doing that double stop kind of slightly thing and just to go back um to the very beginning when I first started playing power cords then I kind of arranged them into a different thing than I start talking about arpeggio hating that thing and turn it into amore kind of personalized ripped I think this rift probably started a very similar way where I'm just going, you know, probably banging out cord and then slowly finding something that makes it a little bit more personal in a little bit more kind of punching and bin in pushing little moments inside and making more of a riff out of it then thin just banging away on courts you know and and then to different parts of the guitars frequencies or use the lower the lower end on the high end but I don't really get to hear that often, so every once in a while I like to think what happened I don't and death clock will haven't done some cool slighty um kind of like almost the edge style stuff underneath anything, so why not try that at least one so that's an example of just arranging and trying to do something a little bit different and uh and trying to again personalize and make something that sound generic. So so moving on moving on a cz you've been telling their thiss track is ah like going up against the vocal if you will, right gets its sitting kind of in the same the same territory and like the same kind of frequencies that make the vocal sound exciting make this sound exciting so it's let's see why we ended up with with these frequencies that wind up with because we boosted some of these here to some some upper and some some mids and some some high end got boosted let's see what? I actually ended up boosting, okay, wait was I don't know if you guys heard that a lot in there, but, you know, I was just moving that that frequency now around a little bit and you could see, like some of it made it easier to hear hear that parton's on dh some frequencies made it less so and it's really just a matter of sitting there and deciding what works for that part and you and you may have tio either automate it for different section or just sparse it out, parse it out for ah, for, uh, like a different for a different section to just have a different plugging and different approach to it. And so we do that with with all these little bits, you see all these all these little green guys, they're all lead guitar bits somewhere and something happened turned away because you're an awesome use. I think I may have tried to harness so this second, so let's call that the verse the the pre chorus or the bridge is ah, again a contradiction if if you remember me talking about the original it's, the original piece of music that I was recording um that isn't this song but was just an idea I contradicted the section that was going people pulled data due to data but so do that so the next section had to rhythmically contradict that just to use the same songwriting philosophy so let's go to that and this is where I guess pickles the singing and we have some background vocals that we have to kind of make sense of honor and we have taken out all that sly tickets are so we have a little bit more open space so we're again contradicting uh, the amount of sound that you're hearing from the previous section let's hear that from here healthfully rhythmically if your drums changing guitarist changes and the song advances forward, you will bob your head just a little bit like that's kind of the ideas that you'll you'll notice that difference and then as humans, we react to that change so um I have much background vocals weaken there's a lot of background moguls wii console them for a second, not all of them individually, but just as a group, these ones I decided to all these guys right here and you can see they're signed to bust twenty three all right, so far I've been doing any sub grouping I've had very little effects on anything, right? You know, a little bit of reverb on the vocal and maybe on this near two but and here we are with these background vocals er sub grouped into this uh bus right here and as you can see uh I'm auto tuning them I'm compressing them individually and then I my I q them and probably compress them again with my favorite plug in I'm not getting paid for that uh uh somebody pay him yeah, wait you compress it collectively as a group because it is a inquire at that point you know, section them all you've basically group them all on and you have them in a stereo track well, that bustem team into hysteria try auto tune them individually on not like a severe auto tuning is more like a dramatic setting. I'm sure here yes it's a chromatic scale and it just rise it a little bit and just brings it ever so because there were still kind of naturally out of tune and my eyes I was when I recorded it. Yeah, just a little less so you know there's just a little closer to the intothe key center to the pitch and so that I have a pretty gentle setting there's no t pain kind of stuff going on here um kind of a medium uh, speed setting is pretty, you know, kind of halfway human says humanize way you want me to do about it and then I'm you know, kind of somewhere between relax and choosy and it's just a setting that seems to work for this track and you just gotta dial it in and make sure you're not getting too far yeah yeah and so all of them together end up sounding like this works or doesn't sound fine and track it sounds it sounds great and the dragons of big is almost more like a keyboard sound at this point yeah I've done that before I do that a couple different places on this dooms directly anything tio all right um and it's kind of quiet in the in the mix too if you hear it but it's um we're in the mix now please yes so you hear another trick that you and I use often is the lead vocal is doing you know you can actually measure out the tempo in your delay and the last part of his line is echoing into the open space so that's just arranging trick as much of that is a mixing trick but you can if you listen to that again the melodic vocal and sometimes we print those and sometimes it's just the delay throw right yeah so what we did here it must be this guy so let's send for this is the delay throw a little trick instead of having this giant delay going on throughout the both around the whole thing and just washing over everything it just put it on the last bit you can see this is to throw on the last tell that note and that's ah that's you're like the delay that carries over the gap but then disappears as it dies out before the local starts over again wait really we're talking about right now so that's a delay and we we've done it on on, you know, a few songs and it seems to work here and there it's a nice trick that's nice to do it and it's nice to back off and not do it. So you know, um that's the only place where happens in this song and I think we I think there are a couple places where we did on death album three it's god was one of them, I believe. And then another one was a sky hunter where we had a couple select throws where I remember we would put some you probably anticipated and I want some of them and he put him in a lot of places said ok, let's, just put it in this one place yeah, it can overdo it and so some songs really call for it. Yeah, and other songs you know, there's no room for it all happens and on the phrasing and stuff gap screen, by the way there's another trick that I will use often in music and just song writing when in doubt, use something that worse. Use a beatles trick and and in this case I did. So I'm in I think, in this case, at this point, I mean, see, this is a standard him guitar, but I go to the four quarters the f so it's four for a minor, one that z go into the water it's in lots of different places but it's, an old beatles trick. And when in doubt you can kind of re harmonize that make people not think it's a beatles trick, because if in some cases I think again, putting the third from the bottom, I think so. That's that's, I'm going to the water to a four to four minor it's ah it's. A classic trick, you know, there's a reason those songs sound cool because this court sound cool and so again, if you like a chord progression in a song, learn it, try to rework it, trying to make it your own, trying to find a way to make it different. But in this case, that's a four to four minor it's ah it's it's in lots of songs.

Class Description

Adult Swim's Metalocalypse is a cheeky parody of metal culture — featuring the shenanigans of a cartoon band called Dethklok. In Toontrack Presents: Studio Pass, you'll get a closer look at the creative process behind this mesmerizing metal powerhouse-turned-TV-series.

Brendon Small is the creator and primary musician driving Dethklok’s music, including its four full-length albums. In this installment of Studio Pass, Brendon and producer Ulrich Wild (Pantera, White Zombie, Slipknot, Deftones) will show how they compose, engineer, and mix the music of Metalocalypse – explaining the recording techniques used for Dethklok’s drums, bass, guitars, vocals and effects.

The music behind the hilarious spectacle that is Metalocalypse is no joke. Join Brendon and Ulrich for Studio Pass and learn about the unique creative process behind the music of Dethklok.


John Thaxton

I love Brendon. He has always treated fans super well. There's so much wisdom to be gained from listening to him about workflow and music in general. Great class!

Aaron Thurtell

Being someone new and looking into recording songs, I found this class very informative and in a way essential, the idea of recording seemed over whelming and I had no idea where to start, being a fan of Brendon small and Ulrich Wilds work on Dethklok and Galaktikon I found it very enjoyable and must for any fans of Brendon small looking into how he goes about making a record