In this final part of a three-part series of free video tutoirals for Pro Tools Expert, Technical Editor James Ivey continues the explanation of his mix process of the song "Hold On" by UK based band Voltaire.
James starts the final section with the electric distorted guitar parts. The rhythm guitars are doubled and panned hard left and right to create a good stereo image. The processing James applies is all done on the rhythm guitar buss to save time and resources. James shapes the guitar part using the new Universal Audio Distressor plug-in. Distressors just work on heavy guitar parts like this and James quickly adjusts the plug-in to get the "sound" he wants. After adding a little reverb James filters the bottom end of the rhythm guitars with the McDSP F202 Filter Bank EQ. To save time James copies the plug-ins from the rhythm to the lead guitar parts. In this case, its the same guitar player, with the same instrument and amp so there is a fair chance the settings will not need to be altered a great deal.
The Hammond organ is next and James simply adds a little reverb to put the organ in the same virtual space as the rest of the instruments.
In processing the vocals James starts with the already applied Fairchild 660 bosting the input and bringing down the threshold to control the peaks in the vocal and give it a thickness. James then brings in EQ in the form of the Universal Audio Maag EQ4. James pulls up the Male Vocal A preset and just adjusts this to fit the vocal tone. He then brings in a little vocal plate reverb to bring the vocal to the front of the mix.
James finishes work on the lead vocal by reaching for the Waves Scheps Parallel Particles plug-in to add that final something to enhance the vocal.
The backing vocals start by getting pulled in to compliment the lead then a little reverb is added and again Parallel Particles in Stack Vocal mode.
The lead guitar is last to be treated. Having already copied in the rhythm plug-ins and settings James blends between the room mic and close cab mic to get a rich tone with some room depth. James then adds some delay from his aux rack choosing a preset from the amazing Exponential Audio Excalibur.
James plays through the rest of the track just to check if there are any more issues to be resolved. You can hear a full finished mix below along with a basic static mix of the song before James' mix. We hope you have enjoyed this look into the processing and ideas behind the mix and if you have any comments or questions please do add them below in the comments section.