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Toontrack presents: Studio Pass

Lesson 21 of 26

Mixing Drums for Blazing Star

Ulrich Wild, Brendon Small

Toontrack presents: Studio Pass

Ulrich Wild, Brendon Small

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Lesson Info

21. Mixing Drums for Blazing Star


  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 Drums for Blazing Star

Let's listen, tio what kind of snare samples were way, way have along with the snare and I get that slamming kind of thing is going tio what? Those were actually flam they really were especially flying you go on dh tom's too but you can hear that this one sound sounds very odd and machine like by itself and this one is very fuddy yeah, he wouldn't necessarily call these like good snare samples, right? But they complement the snap way have out of this on dh this the more river everyone alone was using that instead of putting the drums the river just using this sample to give me some space and it's just very precise it doesn't get any other bleed in there. Um so that gets us over to the toms you can see those tom tracks are sitting down here. These are the original ana unedited ones and they're just hanging out um before for future use they won't have to deliver a project. I want to deliver the the unedited trump tom tracks along with the edited ones in case somebody has different ideas.

Sure, um and so here you can see I do have these brown ones are my tom tracks can I always solar these guys from in it? And I did go through and I did the tom triggers for this song I didn't but I did those uh, two days ago yeah, they're not actually what you hear on the album? Ok? Because that did him for illustration purpose right now let's just have some some tom action going on through the loser big on effective tom's these air really on e cute un compressed tom's there like the mike and the tom and jean right and through preamble I might have at the slightest bit of limiting on there just to make sure I'm not getting any unexpected overs while recording but they were not uh treated whatsoever because you saw how it was have a clean them up on dh two have two compressor catch it after it's been faded out without the symbols have been compressed before they get faded how that it's just sounds more pleasing to me so okay that's why I make those decisions we let's turn these e cues on again guess which plug and we're using here this is this is my console you know this is my this is my home uh you'll see later I don't on ly use that I also use other stuff but this is my go to and if I because I know I can get out of it and I don't need to search any to get this makes done you're familiar with what did not really as it's my home I on but it goes back to, like jude, we're airing on sunday, you know, the way you've got to get this done that, like, sound good. And so, uh, let's hear these tom's with to meet you on it that's some heavy queuing and heavy compressing let's look at what? What we have here we again we're boosting some high end and again, probably some some of you get your legal? What what should I boost? Which part of the high end is like? Well, you gotta use your years, you kind of have to, uh, go in and turn this knob around and find the frequency that works. And I know we're listening to the stuff solo now and you, khun cq stuff while it's solo, but you also have to listen to it, and he queued while it's in while you're listening to the hole, maybe because the attack that you like in the tom or in the snare wherever, uh, maybe very, very pleasing to you, well, it's solo, but I might be totally stepping on something else that is actually more important in that section of the sun tom's by themselves, they're dangerous drum because they have a lot of frequency, there is a lot of high end and a lot of low, and that takes ups and that's a set of the majority of the girth of a drum kit yeah wouldn't you say there's nothing homes are actually very hard to mix for me it is uh is one of my least favorite things to deal with it sometimes very sporadic and uh like you wantto to sound huge bombastic but you don't want to have things be sounding small after they're done unless you're like you have rodeo towns and it's no other kid then you just have a whole different kind of thing you know um but you see that I suck out a whole lot of around three hundred hertz like can't suck out anymore that apparently there is a really annoying frequency let's turn that up real quick and boosted instead of cutting it this that's a trick in fact you can you cue things by boosting and finding the frequency that annoys you so the view then couldn't cut it out right boxy and ugly you know? I mean, so what sits in that frequency low wind of the guitar's like stuff that you really want to hear what's this in their low end of the vocals orchestra especially on this stuff you know like there's some some low strings in chile or whatever there's all sorts of legal if you can suck that out and make some space, we'll take that out and uh you know, it makes a world of difference and like all of a sudden, you don't have that build up there anymore from the times, and you have space for for other things. Um, so let's ah, it's. The same problem process goes for for all the tom's. Really, you just have to find find these frequencies that are not pleasant at the time and contradictory or stepping in and saying let's zero click what plays during that section? I don't know a lot of locals and the guitar in there and then ah, obviously, the base is in that frequency. Says, have a quick listen to the base on dh. That is brian bell. The's air brian miller. Bases uh, tracks you got. We got three tracks, and you can see that we had to fix something in there. There was a note that I think changed. I think what happened was I think, uh, we may be re harmed too soon in something way. I like to go to the third or, you know, the first version of the courts. What I like to do first is establish what the pattern of the core ges and unite and then hopefully go and, uh, and we harm to make this on. Move up a notch yeah there's there's something going on where he was something site and not to go to harmony but keep the root or yeah I think there's a little bit of confusion because I think beller also did this when he was a nashville and we listen the takers that this is great but we'll have to do a little patching this one note on dwi found it and you you fix it yeah there's one note somewhere they actually could use the word it was long enough um but yes so here brian centers um uh a clean a dirty and a what he calls sub so let's listen to what that is let's say that would be his die has regularly inspected the eye let's say that's his uh it has distorted the eye has probably his yet did detect thing than a and let's see what this is it's ah it's kind of ah, several studies and subbing lower lower and nick anything together this is all just what he sent me unaffected honey cued let's see what they sound like together like this sounds pretty sweet but let's see what we did the q wise to these things um this one here, as you can tell it's my favorite plug in but we also use an extra compressor and this is actually the logic house compressor um not afraid to use plug ins you know again these these plug ins you a you use what's available to you when you grow to like certain things and you use those as your as your go twos but then somebody you also when you when you see a base and you want to bring it's usually accusing oppression just like the drums like all of it is each year on compression you know there's actually initially when I want to set up mics there's very, very little almost ripped out the whole system here uh use very, very little effects in the initial stages of mixing until I know what's around me like I'm corralling all these tracks and I get like a whole mess of tracks you know, just kind of hurting them and yeah, like starting to like, push him around and figure him out and don't immediately get to the q settings these are like, you know I'll go ok the bases too bright or basis to dark and out do a little something to reel it in and then going out right now the guitars are stepping on the local so it's make some space there and then it just kind of keep nudging things around until they get to the point and again you know I can hear everything everything sounds powerful everything that needs to be heard can be heard and but it's it's a process it's not like a this is my setting I'm sticking with it no matter what you know so here with the base we just put put in some low end and uh you know, just may I just add a little little little low end on the clean uh track that he gave and some compression with this let's see what it looks like not not a lot of action on my end on this because it sounded good already and it didn't need a lot of processing he plays a really clean instrument playersplayer yeah and so let's see what the distortion distorted process was there look at that way very minimal compression again like looks like the whatever they did they put the committed to tape was or two into the box was very much uh like like his sound is what he does the same thing with uh with this thing just looks like ad it's um some actually compression it's just kind of comes along that I noticed about that lower frequency of base and even in my own experimenting with mixing is that you don't need a lot of that low for it to kind of sit and fatten the whole bottom end yeah it's easy to overdo that yeah, you know but it really is an important frequency to really get the actual tone across on the actual note yeah and and here like you might be interesting to just, uh solo uh the kick and the base and to see how they pushed together they work together and they both do their job they both coexists down in that low end and uh you know well at the guitars to that in a minute here um but let's finish our drums first which are the all the all the brashness up on top with the rooms and let's see how much rooms down we used uh if you guys were here yesterday uh you heard these rooms sounds before very, very briefly and the and the overheads as well. So here, let's listen to the unaffected uh any cute on processed room turn this on got rid of get rid of a lot of that brumley low and stuff because way just don't have the room for really with all these fast kicks and would you say that's a rule in general of yours to take the overhead lights and just brighten them? Ah, well, these air the room mikes and some in the rooms yes, you know, I on this fast stuff let's see what we did with their actually we we actually didn't brighten them. We just rolled off the low end, ok? Yeah he's a little seven yeah, and they did some extra compression too just you know, I'll say this one thing that in my experience in aa an easy drummer and or superior drummer you can take the drum kit and you can do a lot of uh auxiliary outs and you khun send or bus those two and e q certain drum so it's kind of a good experiment to do that with with a with a drum kit any kind of like superior drummer like even just a rocket or that crazy big double kick it and an experiment with your own accuse because you will start to understand what works and what doesn't turn like the rumbly stuff you're just be trying to get rid of even though they come pretty well cute yeah yeah but you can still kind of play with that stuff on your own if you really want tio and start to get a sense of how to its part of putting in your hours yeah the man is like finding out what that does because like and you want to do that kind of there's there's two two areas one of them you want to do it on your own time because you're learning things about your craft and what did you do the same time you want to do it on like apply it on but you don't want to waste the client's time like searching for stuff that technically you ought to know already but at the same time you also want to search for things that makes declines project unique so even that in itself is a balancing act like a mixing act if you will you do have you is slowly over when you when you get to a drum kit is not your first rodeo you've been there you have an idea of what you have a bag of tricks for example like you know what you like with the snare you know it seemed to punch through, you know e q seemed to resonate or what you like to die alone and dial out for the most part yeah, depending on the tempo of the song and you learn something every day with every project you'll learn so you may have accidentally w hughes something and find that works better but yeah, but over that's why I wonder if there is a certain trick I'm sure for the people that are listening to one another like ok, what is the overhead trick? And and I remember messing around taking auxiliary out and even just tryingto just make the room a little punch here in some way and yes, instead of frightening everything rolling off the gives a similar kind of idea without making anything historic on duh you know with the room sounds and overheads you get some you get a lot of nice tone out of out of the drum kit sometimes and so you can use that teo especially the room senate theory they're too right you don't want really mess with too much away from a little bit but you don't want to he changed the whole stretch unless you want to completely destroyed and comfort strange effect or something to you know didn't you tell me I know you've done different experiments didn't you take a room mike and throw it through a distortion thing or something? Sure. Yeah I mean, of course room sounds before so you guys you can do you you khun gave him off a snare like like that you know the phil collins sound with huge gated snare stuff? Yeah, and then, uh gated tom's too sure. Um so yeah, there's a lot of a lot of fun stuff that you can do and and these air I mean, you could you could talk hours about tricks like that and that's um that's really what? Kids nowadays air kind of missing because they are not necessarily growing up in recording studios anymore and the ones that do don't get to do iraq means again recording studio so there's a lot of you learn a lot by watching other people do these tricks by you know you being there right hand and patching and interfacing with studio like patching in you know they'll tell you can you put a gate across that reverb and use a trigger off the snare into the game but whatever and you know like, hey what's he doing I've never seen this before going out do you go with it because the etiquette says shut up and do as you're told right right and so u that's how you learn nowadays you get a manual on they say like of course you khun do this and this and this and you like buy what I want to do that right? You know, I mean on the sometimes if it's you sometimes you want a trashy room sometimes you wanna weird's crew we were exactly and their hands on the size of the style of music, you know, it's like some grungy guys you can take all of them, you can put all the favours down and just use the room like and sometimes that just sounds really, really cool that sounds like leads up when sometimes I'm just really nasty to maybe that's exactly that's when you need it off all the high end across the whole thing is that it doesn't have to be all polishing pretty community crash and cool trash absolutely let's have a quick listen to our overhead um doesn't sound like anything too exciting without my favorite you it is we're back to this one you see there's a different thing when he hears we're brightening the overheads a little bit we're also rolling off everything under two hundred and we're doing a lot of good compression on dh to get a little bit of there's going to be rolling mohr off down below three hundred so we were getting rid of all this, this, uh, this rumble that's down there because again, everyone the space and we don't want to have that come through, especially with the edited kicks that we had going on. We want to be careful with that let's, listen to what that sounds cute, much cleaner, higher fidelity on s o that kind of wraps up our drum thing, except for one thing that I think it might be maybe in the minority, I definitely know that I do this on purpose, and I know that people have common it on me that they don't, um when you like the extra high hats and ride mike's on stuff that around, um, they contribute to, like, the stereo spread of the overhead of the drum kit, and I know that some people were, uh, were interested or didn't I hadn't really thought of balancing the hi hat and ride mike's out together a cz to keep this like the stereo fields balanced? Yeah, and it's it's something I definitely consciously do uh, like I don't just use that link don't just balance the overhead left right to keep the snare in the center but also any of the other mike's like I'll pair either the hi hat and the ride mike together and make sure that the bleed off the snare through those two likes ends up being in the center and not just the you know I don't just use him for the right and the high hat but also to balance that's near out okay so that that is ah a little trick that that I've picked up over over time so meaning you pan them in until you find your center snare is that right? Yeah I q them not necessarily only to the ride sound but also to the snare sounding so it would sound balanced in the center okay you know just like you know and it's a level and you know like all of it linked with this one project here we have to hats on the left and a right on the left and the right and a china on the left so I would make sure you can see these are actually louder than that that that means anything technically because the levels could be recorded out arbitrary levels but the uh like balance let's just listen to her work and see how full of crap I am uh turn all these on because they're important for this always work out completely because you need to make sure that you hear the other things but it's definitely on my mind and perhaps there they've been compensated, um like with the with the other overheads, so it all, like, ultimately all has to work together. It's not just like this, mike. Well, this one is lower than the other ones we have to push it up like yeah, but maybe when we recorded the overheads this one was up against the wall a little bit more than the other one is picking up some extra things. So it's ok for that to be a little louder to balance it out, and with all the higher and whispery sounding kind of like the breasts and all that stuff, you don't need a lot for teo poke through the mix that frequency is really going toe munched through, and I noticed that on tv and recording the a's and the higher register on the piano is going to punch through easier they're very quiet volume, that's, that's all you're going to hear and those higher sizzles in the higher like crack of this near absolutely anyway, so this is ah that's our drum kit now so that's the thing, this is what we ended up with. It didn't go this quickly in that you know this simply because there's a lot of balance and you start doing one surging and destroy, but let's, just listen to drunken, real quick by itself. Still sounds like the real drums, even though we just just brutalized it. Real idiots. But from the original there's, you know, a natural sound of the drums, a little warmer, a little bit more of that rumbly kind of made it low. Me, it has a natural thing. But now it's punch here, yeah, and it's a little bit more, just present. Yeah, and so, you know, we have the base let's. Have a little base along with it, because that's life. So it all works together and let's, see what happens when we had some guitars.

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