Mixing Stage 1 final day – loose ends.
We resume on Oh Genevieve and it does take a while to make sense of all the keyboard, string, brass and accordion overdubs – the song was recorded fairly bass ackwardly (Blair wasn’t around for basics) and there are some cymbal hits in the intro that were played to nothing really… Now we have an arrangement we go back and move them around a little so that they play better with the accordion and glockenspiel.
Once that is done we look at the overall arrangement. Everything is full on the whole way through. We’re very happy to discover that we don’t need Mark’s electric guitar in the intro – the acoustic that was intended to only ever be it’s double works nicely on it’s own. We make a bunch of similar mutes and waste an hour or so trying find a way to have the drums on their own for a section (drum solo!) but there is spill from the electric guitar and the two together doesn’t sound quite as good as ‘guitars and drums on the one!’ (Prince – Mountains). So I give up. No drum solo. Mick also wastes a little time trying to make the rather small sounding tambourine sound bigger. He doesn’t like it as recorded. He eventually succeeds and the old wooden thing now sounds like a Rhythm Tech.. but I don’t like it. I liked the old wooden vibe. Eventually he song is sounding swell, we move on.
The only outstanding issue (other than the unsung song – which I must write this weekend) is the jive talking in the Inverse Midas Touch intro section. Not to give the whole vibe away but Rainy and I had recorded a little conversation roughly based on Bo Diddley’s ‘Say Man’ which I’d scripted, but it doesn’t sound right. I can’t quite figure out what’s wrong, I’m still pretty sure it wasn’t a rotten idea, so I ask Mick if we can do some surgery in Pro Tools. We try X, Y and Z until I ask if he has that Elastic Audio thing, and can I slow some of Rainy’s dialogue down? Immediately she sounds mischievous, which is right. If we over do the effect she sounds drunk and Southern, but with just the right amount of time stretching it works really well. I email Rainy to make sure she doesn’t mind and she replies “Ha ha!!! I can’t wait to hear it!! You’re funny.” Indeed I am.
That done we’re finished with stage one of the mixing process and Mick suggests that the next stage should be balancing the vocals on each song, so I leave him to it.