Green Lights Flashing

August 6, 2009 9:06 PM

To loop and quantize, or to leave live??? Opine within.

Just did this today and I'd like opinions on something specific (and anything else you'd like to venture an opinion on, of course).

I'm just out of a band in which the rhythm section kicked ass and held it the fuck down and I could record my parts over and over so they were rhythmically accurate. What I couldn't make accurate, I could edit so it seemed that I could do it.

So, here I sit, brokenhearted...without my band. (I moved. We did not break up, but they are not here.) And I'm trying to decide how to deal with my mediocre rhythm.

Here's what I'm considering doing with this (and other things in the future):

I recorded to a click track, so while mixing, I could potentially pick the very best licks/riffs/grooves from each part and loop them in every section. This would create a MUCH different feel from what's going on here, in which everything is played live, even though a lot of things are electronic sounds.

What do you think would be more effective? Do you like it like this? (But mixed's rough right now.) Or would you like it if it was more...perfect?

Sorry if this is rambly. I've been drinking wine. Woo! Thanks in advance for your opinions!

p.s. Some of it is meant to be slightly out of time and will stay that way. Some of it is just a little sloppy. Can you tell the difference? I'm not sure I can.

posted by nosila (11 comments total) 5 users marked this as a favorite

This is fucking beautiful. I wouldn't change a thing. The low tempo, lazy soul vibe works so well with sloppy. I want to hug this song.

posted by askmeaboutLOOM at 9:13 PM on August 6, 2009

Aw, that's just cause it's still a schmoopy day on metafilter!
posted by nosila at 9:24 PM on August 6, 2009

I love this too, I think it's perfect, not sloppy at all, but IBDWToo, so take that as you will...
posted by abc123xyzinfinity at 10:52 PM on August 6, 2009

this seems pretty good to me - i think you'd wreck the feel of it if you tried to loop the best sections - perhaps in the first 20 seconds you need some kind of percussion to tie it together or adjust a couple of things, but that would be it
posted by pyramid termite at 7:41 AM on August 7, 2009

I guess it depends what you consider effective. I can't imagine how having perfect rhythm would improve on this track. I'd leave it like this. This is a cool song. Good work.
posted by dobie at 9:24 AM on August 7, 2009

that is beautiful - why not try both approaches? Have a live version, and then chop it up and mangle it as well.
posted by the_very_hungry_caterpillar at 10:07 AM on August 7, 2009 [1 favorite]

i'm already imagining a glitched-out version of this track and it makes me happy.
posted by man vs sun at 11:29 AM on August 7, 2009

This is fantastic. If I was having a pop at a remix, I'd try using a deep but short(ish) reverb on the backing track - a kind of spaced-out, woozy sound would be well past cool. I can hear a real clunker at about 1.40 - that needs fixing - it's not a "serendipitous" mistake. Love the vocal by the way - really great. Actually having said all that about reverb, this is pretty fucking good as it is....... But I think the rubato ending doesn't really work. I can see what you're trying to achieve there, but it doesn't quite make it. A little too disjointed and drawn-out perhaps? Anyway - you don't need that fucking band - go it alone. Sometimes these problems can be the very thing that catapults you out of your comfort zone and into the place where things really start happening........ You got a green light from me kid.
posted by MajorDundee at 2:44 PM on August 7, 2009

Your description of the situation is great and I very much understand the dilemma.

That said, this is perfect. As long as you don't feel like the click track is messing with your concentration I would stick with this. Absolutely! It has a very well rounded sound...that is each instrument and your voice strike my aural pallet perfectly. Going with the other technique would leave this feeling clunky and so much less personal.

The song itself is AWESOME! It looks as though you're not as musically bereft as you thought!

Beautiful and I can't wait to hear more!
posted by snsranch at 4:15 PM on August 7, 2009

Thanks, everybody, for the fantastic feedback! It's very helpful, and I really appreciate it.

I think what I'll do with this one is to find a sort of happy medium – keep the live performance, but tighten things up in places and thin it out a bit.

- I'll very likely be making those backing tracks swim around. Light little chorus (indetectable to most ears), swimmy verb, etc. I feel you on the ending, too. Not sure what I'm going to do with it yet, but it will be something else. Thanks for the encouragement on going it alone, too. I've actually done quite a bit on my own over the years, but it was really great having an amazing drummer and bass player to play with for the last few. And thanks for the pun. :)

Just tossing this out there: if anyone is ever looking for a remix project, I've got this and a metric shit-ton of other stuff that I'd be happy to send your way. I'd also be happy to send just vocals, etc.

I think I'll start editing this now. Thanks again, everyone!
posted by nosila at 5:47 PM on August 7, 2009

For posterity, here's the new hotness.
posted by nosila at 9:51 PM on August 7, 2009

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