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Old 05-07-2006, 01:04 AM   #1
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PROFESSIONAL AUDIO ENGINEERS/PRODUCERS THREAD

I'm tired of reading threads by people who don't know what they're talking about when it comes to the quality of this new album...I'm curious to know the opinions of people who are actually in the industry and can possibly shed some light on the tecniques, formulas, and the process of how this amazing sounding record was assembled...I've been a Tool fan for longer than i've been an audio engineer, but I honeslty believe that I can be objective when it comes to shit i've waited years to hear...if it were dissapointing, i would have expressed that by not buying 300 dollar tickets from scalpers...The show was amazing...
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Old 05-07-2006, 04:09 AM   #2
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Re: PROFESSIONAL AUDIO ENGINEERS/PRODUCERS THREAD

i am not in the feild professionally, (getting paid) but i deffenately think they (Tool)
are getting better as a band. the music is complicated where intended and lets each band member shine when needed. teamwork... can be a beautiful thing.

as for production and engineering i don't think they've done anything to far from the norm. i think the writing and structure of the songs commit more to what the album "sounds like" rather than someone mixing down and bringing it all together.

awesome piece of work.

one thing i've always loved about Tool; in other artist work you can see holes in the music.. where they could have done something a little more intense, or whatever adj. you would like to use, but Tool, is always fullfilling.
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Old 05-08-2006, 04:22 AM   #3
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Re: PROFESSIONAL AUDIO ENGINEERS/PRODUCERS THREAD

Quote:
Originally Posted by NeverTooLoud
I'm tired of reading threads by people who don't know what they're talking about when it comes to the quality of this new album
ahem.
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Old 05-08-2006, 05:08 AM   #4
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Re: PROFESSIONAL AUDIO ENGINEERS/PRODUCERS THREAD

i dont know about audio engineering or anything, but when i first listened to the album i noticed maynards voice was almost impossible to hear, but it worked great as another instrument. in orchestra, the trumpet section is the vocalist of the band, but that is not all you can hear in the orchestra. i like the sound the band made very much. also when i wanted to hear what he was saying, it really wasnt that hard to just open the album on winamp or some other player with an equalizer and adjust the sound to where i can hear him more clearly, but not lose the effect the music had before you could hear him.
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Old 05-09-2006, 04:19 PM   #5
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Re: PROFESSIONAL AUDIO ENGINEERS/PRODUCERS THREAD

Bob Rock is a fucking professional. It means nothing.
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Old 05-09-2006, 10:22 PM   #6
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Re: PROFESSIONAL AUDIO ENGINEERS/PRODUCERS THREAD

Well then maybe I' ll dignify the post by commenting on how much raw everything sounds. The last engineer David Bottrill has a "glassy" approach to his mixes where everything is saturated in reverb and chorus etc. Joe Barresi seems to be more about obscure sounds via miking techniques. The photos that were put up on the website while recording was taking place, showed a lot of room mics. Rather than artificially create that space with digital devices, he went the old school approach of getting the natural ambience of the room. I dig that kinda thing.

Specifically, the vocals are buried a bit, which does a variety of things. it makes you listen to it more intently, it makes the music seem larger, and potentially making the vocal more intimate. They seem more animated than previous albums as well. I mean where Bottrill would slap on a distortion, Barresi would try a variety of other things to accentuate the nuasances.

Things are more in your face than previous albums where Bottrill created some ambient environment as opposed to Barresi's band playing in front of you vibe.

Thats all I really grasped so far, sonically speaking.
These albums are an onslaught of what are they playing, what does it mean, and how does it sound. too much to concentrate on all at once.
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Old 05-10-2006, 03:43 AM   #7
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Re: PROFESSIONAL AUDIO ENGINEERS/PRODUCERS THREAD

Hey,
I am not a pro, but i spend a lot of time recording and producing, mixing and simply having a lot of fun :) . What was realy amazing for me was the way Maynard's voice sounds, I mean there are some parts in which he is singing with this whispering kind of low voice, it sounds so mysitical in a way. i.e. in Vicarious, most distinctly in Intensions (there appear to be a lot of stuff going on with th vocals, absolutely terrific sound!!!), the whole album has this mark all over. How do you think this effect is achieved? Is it possible that he recorded one track with just whispering and another one with some more distinct singing. I know that you can achieve similar effect by doing that. Or is it possible that it comes just from the natural tembre of the voice?
Other than that I really, relly like Tool's sound, not only in this album. It kind of remains at the same time very well mixed and produced without losing a certain degree of harshness. Compare it with the average alt metal record and you see what I mean: they all kind of sound so 'produced' lol, so compressed, and kind of unnatural
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Old 05-10-2006, 04:38 AM   #8
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Re: PROFESSIONAL AUDIO ENGINEERS/PRODUCERS THREAD

I'm a live and radio engineer, while i like the production of the new album (guitars are a bit loud in places) i loved botrills work on both albums. He miked the kit, placed a p.a. in the room with the kit and fed the mic's into it as well as through the desk, he then mixed the p.a. sound with the miked tracks. dannys kit on aenima and lat are so live and open, very much the kind of drum sound i like


if any of you read "future music" theres a 3 page article on Baressi and 10,000 days in the recent issue.
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Old 05-10-2006, 04:44 AM   #9
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Re: PROFESSIONAL AUDIO ENGINEERS/PRODUCERS THREAD

im not a professioal... first i cant understand a shit frm vicarious... but it takes time.. now i cant stop listening it.. at each time i find out a new rhyme new melody.. its just perfect..

this is like, when you listen sober first you think its better than schism.. but u understand later why schism is given a grammy..
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Old 05-12-2006, 05:03 PM   #10
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Re: PROFESSIONAL AUDIO ENGINEERS/PRODUCERS THREAD

I think you meant to title this the "RENT-AN-ENGINEER/ELITIST ASSHOLES" thread. A mod may be able to help you change it.
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Old 05-15-2006, 08:14 AM   #11
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Re: PROFESSIONAL AUDIO ENGINEERS/PRODUCERS THREAD

Quote:
Originally Posted by T00L3rdi
Well then maybe I' ll dignify the post by commenting on how much raw everything sounds. The last engineer David Bottrill has a "glassy" approach to his mixes where everything is saturated in reverb and chorus etc. Joe Barresi seems to be more about obscure sounds via miking techniques. The photos that were put up on the website while recording was taking place, showed a lot of room mics. Rather than artificially create that space with digital devices, he went the old school approach of getting the natural ambience of the room. I dig that kinda thing.

Specifically, the vocals are buried a bit, which does a variety of things. it makes you listen to it more intently, it makes the music seem larger, and potentially making the vocal more intimate. They seem more animated than previous albums as well. I mean where Bottrill would slap on a distortion, Barresi would try a variety of other things to accentuate the nuasances.

Things are more in your face than previous albums where Bottrill created some ambient environment as opposed to Barresi's band playing in front of you vibe.

Thats all I really grasped so far, sonically speaking.
These albums are an onslaught of what are they playing, what does it mean, and how does it sound. too much to concentrate on all at once.
Peas,
Abstract @tom
im glad someone got the intent behind this thread.
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Old 05-17-2006, 08:47 PM   #12
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Re: PROFESSIONAL AUDIO ENGINEERS/PRODUCERS THREAD

Is there a link to the Baressi article?
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Old 05-18-2006, 12:13 AM   #13
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Re: PROFESSIONAL AUDIO ENGINEERS/PRODUCERS THREAD

[QUOTE=NeverTooLoud]I'm tired of reading threads by people who don't know what they're talking about when it comes to the quality of this new album...QUOTE]

I hope you are refering to comments and threads claiming poor quality of techniques and formulas ect. Thats fair enough, but if you are refering people who start threads because they dont like the album then you should shut up...

People dont need to be an profesional workin in the industry to have an opinion. I personally love the album, but it all comes down to preference and personal opinion. Something can be technically briliant, and boring as bat shit.

Hopefully that wasnt what ya meant.

As to the mixing of the album, it seems to me to be reminiscent of undertow, well more so than any of the other albums.
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Old 05-18-2006, 10:02 AM   #14
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Re: PROFESSIONAL AUDIO ENGINEERS/PRODUCERS THREAD

Personaly I love the production of the record. I'm not in the industry but I know my way around a studio so I believe that I can make a comment here.

The disc is a throw back in MANY ways. It's tool, yet it isn't. But the irony is the parts that aren't tool, are the ones that are the most tool.

I love talking in circles....
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Old 05-18-2006, 10:37 AM   #15
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Re: PROFESSIONAL AUDIO ENGINEERS/PRODUCERS THREAD

Tool vocals are purposefully mixed in at a lower volume than on most other band's recordings. Even A Perfect Circle has much louder vocals. This does a couple of things:

1. Makes the lyrics somewhat harder to decipher; I'm sure Maynard wants it that way.
2. It makes it necessary to CRANK IT to hear the vocals correctly!

My only other production-related comment is that the first time I heard the "10,000 days" track I thought there was some serious distortion going on. Turns out it's the Lustmord weather effects, so I assume all that low grumbling noise is on purpose.
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Old 05-18-2006, 10:43 AM   #16
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Re: PROFESSIONAL AUDIO ENGINEERS/PRODUCERS THREAD

I don't think you're going to find anything that was A) a god honest production mistake or B) a mistake that tool can't cover up with a cleaver meaning and story behind it.

Other than the fact that it all comes to an end...yeah...thats the only downside.
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Old 05-18-2006, 10:53 AM   #17
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Re: PROFESSIONAL AUDIO ENGINEERS/PRODUCERS THREAD

I, for one, do not care what you "professionals" are saying about it. I think the album is completely subpar with respect to the "Lateralus" album.

Yes, Maynard is more of an instrument than a LEAD vocalist in this album, and yes, that is refreshingly original. But no, it's not what people want to hear. In the past, Maynard has written very obtuse and challenging lyrics, but the lyrics for this album are mediocre to say the least (violence in the media... I mean, c'mon, man). I'm sure that may be part of the reason why he's not as "up front" as he has been in the past. On the other hand, he does do some interesting things, like "Rosetta Stoned".

Yes, the guitar plays a larger role in this album. No, that's not a good thing. I don't know if any of you noticed, but "Jambi" is more or less the same note over and over and over and over and over again. Adam is a MUCH better guitarist when he sustains himself.

The drumming has remained about where it was at "Lateralus", which I believe is a good thing, as everything else was a step back (in my opinnion anyway).

The bass tracks are virtually non-existant on this album. Have any of you tried rocking out to this album in a car with a decent system? (And no, I'm not talking about 2 15"s, I'm talking about a good system for rock music) It sounds like absolute shit; just really loud guitar riffs.

As for all the extras... Lame... There is waaaaaay too much going on during this album... We have a thunderstorm in "10,000 Days", an ER dialogue in "Lost Keys", and a bunch of random shit before "Intension" even starts to begin.

The track placement is horrible for this album, too. It goes from loud and angry to soft and sustained back to loud then to tribal then to FX then to sustained then to FX... There's no logical flow to it, if you ask me.

I don't care what you do for a living, this album is not as auditorally appealing as the past albums. I'm not knocking it, I'm just saying it's not as good as some of their past albums.
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Old 05-18-2006, 10:54 AM   #18
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Re: PROFESSIONAL AUDIO ENGINEERS/PRODUCERS THREAD

Quote:
Originally Posted by NeverTooLoud
I'm tired of reading threads by people who don't know what they're talking about when it comes to the quality of this new album...I'm curious to know the opinions of people who are actually in the industry and can possibly shed some light on the tecniques, formulas, and the process of how this amazing sounding record was assembled...I've been a Tool fan for longer than i've been an audio engineer, but I honeslty believe that I can be objective when it comes to shit i've waited years to hear...if it were dissapointing, i would have expressed that by not buying 300 dollar tickets from scalpers...The show was amazing...
I'm fairly sure that I read this album was completely analouge, starting out on 2 inch reel to reel.
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Old 05-18-2006, 10:56 AM   #19
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Re: PROFESSIONAL AUDIO ENGINEERS/PRODUCERS THREAD

Quote:
Originally Posted by eleven_waiting
The disc is a throw back in MANY ways.
Excessive limiting isn't a throw back.
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Old 05-18-2006, 11:01 AM   #20
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Re: PROFESSIONAL AUDIO ENGINEERS/PRODUCERS THREAD

Quote:
Originally Posted by AloneOnceAgain97

Yes, the guitar plays a larger role in this album. No, that's not a good thing. I don't know if any of you noticed, but "Jambi" is more or less the same note over and over and over and over and over again. Adam is a MUCH better guitarist when he sustains himself.
Two points real quick.

The grudge is the same note over and over and over without a bassline as melodic as the one in Jambi. Do you like the Grudge? Pushit has a huge sections where its just a droning D note. Its part if their style and also one thing that brings in a tribal aspect to the music. They don't always resolve chord progressions like the ear expects and most other bands do, that is one thing to me which sets their style apart and something I really enjoy. I love how they can pretty much just take 15 riffs and variations in D and make a song of it that is so amazing. Its not harder to come up with chord progressions that it is a good riff or part to a song in the same key so why try to talk like it is a show of less talent or effort.

Secondly, all the filling segues and noises. Have you ever watched Tool play live on the Lateralus tour or this tour? They have lots of ambient noise and I think it sets a tone and mood for the songs which follow and also allows for digestion of what was just heard. On the Lateralus tour they looped one riff the whole 15 minute intermission. Its also part of their style and even if you take away the Lipan Conjurings, The starting part of Intension, viginit tres and check the length of the album, it'll still be as long as most peoples releases.
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Old 05-18-2006, 11:09 AM   #21
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Re: PROFESSIONAL AUDIO ENGINEERS/PRODUCERS THREAD

Quote:
Originally Posted by theprosperone
Two points real quick.

EDITED TO SAVE SPACE.
I don't mind the same riff over and over. If I did, I'd certainly stay away from Tool. I understand that a lot of it is artistic expresion, and I like that... They just failed, in my opinion, to bring it together as well as they could have.

I absolutely love Tool live. And I'm not saying they were just trying to buy time with the segues, they're just not that good. "Lost Keys" sounds freakin' sweet, the doctor dialogue is just utterly cheesy. It would have been MUCH better without it. "Lipan Conjuring" is complete shit, if you ask me. Tribal segues were original like 5 years ago; this just sounds like a Godsmack song accidently made it onto the album. Now, without those, the thunderstorm would have been badass. But since it's already full of noise, the T-storm just adds to that.

I'm not bashing the segues and calling them accessories at all, don't get me wrong. I actually like a lot of Tool segues just as much as I do their actual songs. I just could have done without Lipan and the Dr. In the past, the segues just REALLY helped throw your emotions around and set the tone for the next song. They just seem to be out of place on this album.

Last edited by AloneOnceAgain97; 05-18-2006 at 11:13 AM..
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Old 05-18-2006, 11:11 AM   #22
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Re: PROFESSIONAL AUDIO ENGINEERS/PRODUCERS THREAD

Quote:
Originally Posted by AloneOnceAgain97
I, for one, do not care what you "professionals" are saying about it. I think the album is completely subpar with respect to the "Lateralus" album.

Yes, Maynard is more of an instrument than a LEAD vocalist in this album, and yes, that is refreshingly original. But no, it's not what people want to hear. In the past, Maynard has written very obtuse and challenging lyrics, but the lyrics for this album are mediocre to say the least (violence in the media... I mean, c'mon, man). I'm sure that may be part of the reason why he's not as "up front" as he has been in the past. On the other hand, he does do some interesting things, like "Rosetta Stoned".

Yes, the guitar plays a larger role in this album. No, that's not a good thing. I don't know if any of you noticed, but "Jambi" is more or less the same note over and over and over and over and over again. Adam is a MUCH better guitarist when he sustains himself.

The drumming has remained about where it was at "Lateralus", which I believe is a good thing, as everything else was a step back (in my opinnion anyway).

The bass tracks are virtually non-existant on this album. Have any of you tried rocking out to this album in a car with a decent system? (And no, I'm not talking about 2 15"s, I'm talking about a good system for rock music) It sounds like absolute shit; just really loud guitar riffs.

As for all the extras... Lame... There is waaaaaay too much going on during this album... We have a thunderstorm in "10,000 Days", an ER dialogue in "Lost Keys", and a bunch of random shit before "Intension" even starts to begin.

The track placement is horrible for this album, too. It goes from loud and angry to soft and sustained back to loud then to tribal then to FX then to sustained then to FX... There's no logical flow to it, if you ask me.

I don't care what you do for a living, this album is not as auditorally appealing as the past albums. I'm not knocking it, I'm just saying it's not as good as some of their past albums.

What a load of crap, no offense but it really is...
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Old 05-18-2006, 11:12 AM   #23
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Re: PROFESSIONAL AUDIO ENGINEERS/PRODUCERS THREAD

Have you even made the relation between the doctor's conversation and what is being said in Rosetta Stoned? Its essential to that song.

Tribal segues WERE original? What, some band does something similar once and then it becomes lame? Seriously, if you don't think that it sounds good then fine. But if you think its lame because OMG ITS SO 5 YEARS AGO......get a better reason. I'm not sure if you know about the connections with native americans and psychedelics but maybe look up Icaros and also peyote ceremonies. Have at least a small amount of open mindedness to why they put these things on here.
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Old 05-18-2006, 11:17 AM   #24
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Re: PROFESSIONAL AUDIO ENGINEERS/PRODUCERS THREAD

Quote:
Originally Posted by elevate
Excessive limiting isn't a throw back.
Ok, I'll accept that....it's a technicality though.

but seriouosly, I hear elements from all the past discs either in the music or the production.
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Old 05-18-2006, 11:17 AM   #25
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Re: PROFESSIONAL AUDIO ENGINEERS/PRODUCERS THREAD

Quote:
Originally Posted by Liquid Drum Theater
What a load of crap, no offense but it really is...
Ummmmm...?


Quote:
Originally Posted by theprosperone
Have you even made the relation between the doctor's conversation and what is being said in Rosetta Stoned? Its essential to that song.

Tribal segues WERE original? What, some band does something similar once and then it becomes lame? Seriously, if you don't think that it sounds good then fine. But if you think its lame because OMG ITS SO 5 YEARS AGO......get a better reason.
Yes, I know the connection between Keys and Rosetta, trust me, I got that. But even at that, the dialogue could have been better. It seems so... Acted out.

Why not like something because it's been overdone? You're telling me you'd be alright with Tool recycling something that's been done MANY times, such as the Metallica "boom-chick" drum beat? Or perhaps some lyrics about a broken heart? Or perhaps some "fuck Bush" sentiments? This Native American segue is no different. Maybe it would have been sweet live or something... But on a full blown release?

Edit: I've tried being open-minded about this album since May 2nd, and it's still not clicking. Maybe try being open-minded about the posibility that maybe our precious Tool made a few mistakes here and there.

Last edited by AloneOnceAgain97; 05-18-2006 at 11:21 AM..
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Old 05-18-2006, 11:45 AM   #26
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Re: PROFESSIONAL AUDIO ENGINEERS/PRODUCERS THREAD

Could you tell me 10 other times a native american style chant has been used as a segue into a song?

I think the songs on the album are fucking great and the segues do for me what I think they were intended to do. I was open to them possibly making huge mistakes but in my opinion they didn't. They made the album sound exactly like what they wanted and I happen to enjoy it just as much as they do.
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Old 05-23-2006, 05:24 AM   #27
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Re: PROFESSIONAL AUDIO ENGINEERS/PRODUCERS THREAD

I remember a comment a musician friend of mine once made while listening to me practice...

"If you were to focus on the quality of your sound and dial back the volume you'd actually have something there..."

The other day, I had the CD playing ambiently in the back ground turned down, but the funny thing was that everything was amazingly clear! You can't crank this CD! It won't let you....just chill with it at a low volume, or adjust your gains properly.

And whoever it was that mentioned the lack of bass line.....GET OUT! I can't believe you can't hear them...but then again, you want it so loud that your testicals tremor.
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