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Mixing an album vs. single
Old 9th June 2020
  #1
Lives for gear
 
🎧 5 years
Mixing an album vs. single

Hi John,

Many thanks for your time!

I wondered whether you consider the cohesiveness of the tracks as a whole whilst mixing an album or whether you're just concerned about the individual songs/singles and leave mastering to sort out the cohesiveness?

If you do, do you have any tips for this? Referencing a mixed song from the record? etc

All the best

Ollie
Old 18th June 2020
  #2
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TheHanes's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by ollieneedham ➡️
Hi John,

Many thanks for your time!

I wondered whether you consider the cohesiveness of the tracks as a whole whilst mixing an album or whether you're just concerned about the individual songs/singles and leave mastering to sort out the cohesiveness?

If you do, do you have any tips for this? Referencing a mixed song from the record? etc

All the best

Ollie
If we're mixing the whole album, then definitely we are thinking of a whole album feel. This is especially important if songs on the album are from a variety of producers.

It isn't necessarily that we are mixing differently than for a single, I think each song gets worked to the same standard, but we might be thinking if overall are we filling the same frequency spectrum, do vocals sound complementary song to song.

I would definitely be referencing prior mixes as I go along.
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Old 18th June 2020 | Show parent
  #3
Gear Maniac
 
prog's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheHanes ➡️
If we're mixing the whole album, then definitely we are thinking of a whole album feel. This is especially important if songs on the album are from a variety of producers.

It isn't necessarily that we are mixing differently than for a single, I think each song gets worked to the same standard, but we might be thinking if overall are we filling the same frequency spectrum, do vocals sound complementary song to song.

I would definitely be referencing prior mixes as I go along.
Hi John,

In this album cases, do you ever do a final revision of each song once you have all the mixes, just for cohesiveness sake?

I find myself doing this quite a bit, putting all "final" mixes on a playlist and to hear if anything sticks out, balance-wise.
Most times when mixing an album I seem to "get" the general vibe and aesthetic by the second or third song and that makes me want to revisit things when I'm done with all of them.

Not really sure of anyone doing it this way, but I can't seem to get "the album feel" any other way ; I even try to send ALL mixes at the same time (after having done a "test" mix for one song, to be sure I'm going in the right direction).
I guess I could never go back to mixing on a console

If you're getting that level cohesiveness out of such different songs and productions without going back to the first songs then I'm even more amazed than I already was .

Thanks, one of the most useful Q&As for sure!
Old 19th June 2020 | Show parent
  #4
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psycho_monkey's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by prog ➡️
Hi John,

In this album cases, do you ever do a final revision of each song once you have all the mixes, just for cohesiveness sake?

I find myself doing this quite a bit, putting all "final" mixes on a playlist and to hear if anything sticks out, balance-wise.
Most times when mixing an album I seem to "get" the general vibe and aesthetic by the second or third song and that makes me want to revisit things when I'm done with all of them.

Not really sure of anyone doing it this way, but I can't seem to get "the album feel" any other way ; I even try to send ALL mixes at the same time (after having done a "test" mix for one song, to be sure I'm going in the right direction).
I guess I could never go back to mixing on a console

If you're getting that level cohesiveness out of such different songs and productions without going back to the first songs then I'm even more amazed than I already was .

Thanks, one of the most useful Q&As for sure!
I’d like to second that question - I also do what you do, line the mixes up, and evaluate in context.

FWIW that sort of used to happen in console days - in most situations you had enough time to re-evaluate early mixes by the end, but maybe not for the tiniest details.
Old 19th June 2020 | Show parent
  #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by psycho_monkey ➡️
I’d like to second that question - I also do what you do, line the mixes up, and evaluate in context.

FWIW that sort of used to happen in console days - in most situations you had enough time to re-evaluate early mixes by the end, but maybe not for the tiniest details.

Quote:
Originally Posted by prog ➡️
Hi John,

In this album cases, do you ever do a final revision of each song once you have all the mixes, just for cohesiveness sake?

I find myself doing this quite a bit, putting all "final" mixes on a playlist and to hear if anything sticks out, balance-wise.
Most times when mixing an album I seem to "get" the general vibe and aesthetic by the second or third song and that makes me want to revisit things when I'm done with all of them.

Not really sure of anyone doing it this way, but I can't seem to get "the album feel" any other way ; I even try to send ALL mixes at the same time (after having done a "test" mix for one song, to be sure I'm going in the right direction).
I guess I could never go back to mixing on a console

If you're getting that level cohesiveness out of such different songs and productions without going back to the first songs then I'm even more amazed than I already was .

Thanks, one of the most useful Q&As for sure!
Most of the time when working on an album like this, all of the mixes are up in the air in "tweak and revise" mode until delivery of all of them are needed. We also prefer to deliver all album songs at once to mastering, because they also need that overall vision to do their job.

When a single or two need to be done first for early release, we might continue to do little (or big) tweaks on the "album" version of the song.

When singles are mastered aside from the whole album, that mastering may also be revised for the "album" versions.

Most of this is driven by artist and producer, label listening sessions; but because the mixes are still open, we do get the chance to hone in on things that come up as the album develops.
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