Used on the guitar for Justin Bieber's "Love Yourself", as stated by *Purpose* mix engineers Josh Gudwin and Andrew Wuepper in this May 2016 *Sound on Sound* interview about the mixing of the title track and others. > “Ed’s original guitar was quite noisy and buzzy. It sounded like he was on the road and had just plugged in quickly to get an idea down. So I selfishly wanted a cleaner guitar sound and had a couple of guys coming in to replay the guitar part, but it never sounded anywhere near as good. It just kept sounding too different and without the right feel. So I decided to go with Ed’s guitar and treated it with the Waves NS1 noise suppressor, the Waves GTR plug-in, and filtered it with the FabFilter Pro-MB, and an Avid EQ, taking out around 3kHz."more
Used for "How to Talk", as stated by mix engineer Kesha Lee in this December 2017 *Sound on Sound* article. > “The intro track was a voice note Uzi had recorded on his phone, and he played it in the booth on his phone, and we recorded it through the mic like that. It sounded really telephone-y, which we wanted, but I tried to take out some of the highs with the Waves OneKnob. All audio vocal tracks apart from the intro have Antares Auto-Tune as the first plug-in. Uzi hears his Auto-Tuned vocals in his headphones while singing. We used to just have it on default, with a Retune speed of 20, but lately he has been like: ‘Give me more Auto-Tune!’ so now we have the Retune Speed set to anywhere from 12 to 5. The ‘D’ after Auto-Tune is the Waves De-Esser, the ‘Q’ the Avid EQ3 seven-band, and the ‘1’ is the Waves C1 gate. All vocal audio tracks also have sends to the delay and the reverb aux tracks. The delay aux track has the Avid Mod Delay II set to half notes, with feedback at 43 percent, the Waves Renaissance Reverberator, set to ‘Hall 1’ reverb, with the highs cut on the reverb EQ, and the Waves S1 stereo imager. The reverb aux has the Renaissance Reverberator. > “All audio vocal tracks go to the vocal aux track. I had two vocal aux tracks in this session, because I wanted to try something different, using plug-ins I don’t normally use. That’s why one of the aux tracks is muted. The vocal aux track that I did use has the Waves De-Esser acting around 4230Hz, then the EQ3 seven-band which has a high-pass at 96.4Hz, and I’m dipping out muddiness at 200 and 500 Hz. I’m also adding some high end at 6.52kHz. I don’t normally add EQ with the seven-band, but Seth would add some high end on Future’s voice and that worked well, so I tried it here. Next is the Waves Renaissance Compressor, to keep the dynamics in check, and then the Waves SSL E-channel, on which I am again dipping out various frequencies. The latter plug-in is more for colour and character. The Waves CLA-3A is more for the sound, and the RN Digital Detailer made Uzi’s vocals sound fuller and wider. > "The final plug-in in the chain is the Nomad Factory MCL-2269 limiter and compressor, again for the sound and for more volume. We always go for a warm, full, loud, in-your-face vocal sound, also because we like the vocals to be louder than the beat. I always turn the beat down 1-2 dB. There are no plug-ins on the master track, because I used to work for a producer who didn’t want that, as the mix would go to the mastering engineer. So I’m still used to doing it like that. I turn the master volume down anywhere between -7 to -9 dB before it goes to mastering, so they have room to work with.”more
Used on Cardi B's vocals for "Bodak Yellow", as mentioned by mix engineer Evan LaRay in this February 2018 *Sound on Sound* interview. > In his mix of ‘Bodak Yellow’, Evan LaRay used almost identical vocal chains on two auxiliary busses. The ‘Vox 1’ chain includes FabFilter’s Pro-DS de-esser and Waves’ C4 multiband compressor, plus the Waves CLA Vocals plug-in and SoundToys’ Decapitator saturation processor. > The main ‘Hook’ and ‘Verse’ vocal tracks have similar plug-in chains, incorporating the EQ3 seven-band, Waves CLA-76 and Waves De-esser, though the ‘Hook’ also has FabFilter’s Timeless 2 delay. LaRay explains, “The EQ on the ‘Hook’ has a high-pass, around 100Hz, and I’m also cutting 3dB at 300Hz, because the vocal sounded a bit muddy, and again 3dB at 4kHz, because there was a piercing frequency there. The CLA keeps the peaks in check, and the de-esser again takes some higher frequencies out, at 4270Hz, and the Timeless is another favourite plug-in. I think in general the FabFilter plug-ins are extremely dope. I wanted the ‘Hook’ vocal to stand out from the ‘Verse’ vocal, so I used a stereo delay preset, and then tweaked that. The presets on the FabFilter plug-ins are pretty good: you just run through all of them and then choose the best one. In this case I lowered the width and the wet value of the stereo delay preset, and that sounded good and gave the hook its own space. The three plug-ins on the ‘Verse’ track do pretty much the same. > “The ‘Inout’ tracks that are below the ‘Hook’ and the ‘Verse’ are vocal doubles. They are words or lines we use for emphasis and additional power on these lines and words. They come from one of her original vocal takes, which I just cut and cleaned up. Both ‘Inout’ tracks have the Waves RCompressor, just containing these words and lines so they don’t overwhelm the ‘Hook’ or the ‘Verse’ vocal, and then the FabFilter Pro-Q2, taking out some high frequencies, again to make sure it doesn’t clash with the leads, and also cutting below 200Hz. And there’s a delay on these tracks to put them in a slightly different space from the lead vocal tracks. > “In addition to the two ‘Inout’ tracks, both the ‘Hook’ and the ‘Verse’ tracks are also accompanied by an ‘Ad Libs’ track, which were some ad libs Cardi had recorded with Mike over at Krematorium. Mike had also set up a separate aux track for these ad libs, which is ‘Vox2’, and I liked that and kept two of the plug-ins he had on that: the [Avid] Sansamp for some distortion and the SoundToys Panman. I then added the D-Verb and the [Waves] CLA Vocals. I adore the CLA Vocals. I use it on every track I work on. When I don’t use it, the vocals sound completely different. I’d love to know what exactly it does! Finally, the inserts have the Waves L1, just to control the peaks. > “The other tracks — ‘EXF1’, ‘EXF2’, ‘EXF3’ and ‘EXF4’, are because I prefer to create a new track if I want to have a specific effect on specific words or phrases. I prefer doing that to automating the effects on a track. Automation is great, but I tend to only do volume automation. So I copy audio to another track, and then put the effect on that, and in this case I created four different effects tracks with four different delays. ‘EFX1’ is the main one, and has the same three plug-ins as the Verse tracks — EQ3 three-band, CLA76 and Waves De-esser — just with the EQ3 cutting more of the high frequencies. Then there’s an eighth-note ping-pong delay from the Waves H-Delay, and then a D-Verb set to ‘hall’ with 7s decay and a 15ms pre-delay. ‘EFX2’ has another H-Delay delay, ‘EFX3’ the Timeless 2 delay, and ‘EFX4’ again has the H-Delay plus a D-Verb.” > All the main vocal audio tracks go to LaRay’s ‘Vox1’ aux group track. This, he explains, has “A FabFilter Pro-DS de-esser, then the Waves RCompressor controlling the peaks, the Waves C4 multiband compressor boosting the high end and containing the lows in her voice, so it doesn’t cut through too much, and Waves CLA Vocals. Again, it’s really making my vocals sound good. I push the Pitch fader to stereo, spank it on the compressor, also push up the treble to brighten it up, turn the reverb down to ‘tight’, and lower the delay by 9dB because my own quarter delay is my main vocal delay, and it sounds great. There’s also a SoundToys Decapitator, to add more harmonic distortion, and then there’s the Waves RVox. That was supposed to be the final plug-in on the insert, but then I realised the vocal was still peaking too much once she began rapping loudly, so I put on the L1 [limiter] to control that.” > The ‘special sauce’ in Evan LaRay’s mixes comes from a parallel aux channel containing a blend of compression, saturation, EQ and other processors. Key ingredients are Waves’ PuigChild compressor and PuigTech equaliser. > The ‘Vox1’ and ‘Vox2’ tracks also each have a Trim plug-in on an insert, and sends to the ‘Verb’ aux and to the ‘ELR’ (LaRay’s initials) track. “I put the Trim on all my tracks at the end of the vocals, and at the end of the beat, because the vocals actually began distorting in places. These two tracks were too hot, and I wanted to make sure they had a good level before going to the ‘Sub Print’ track. I have the ‘ELR’ aux track in every session. It’s most of all parallel compression, but I also always try out new things with distortion, exciters and things like that, and I label that ‘ELR’. In this case it really is the ‘ELR’ track that makes the vocals cut through the mix. > “The compression on the ‘ELR’ track comes from the Waves PuigChild 670, which is a great compressor, and it’s compressing a lot, so the vocal stays right there in the middle. The signal is then going to the PuigTech EQP-1A, which is boosting some low end to add some warmth to the vocals, and some 5kHz, and then the Waves Aphex Vintage Aural Exciter, set to AX Mix 6, for some added crispness and clarity, then the EQ3 seven-band to control the low mids, and another De-Esser cutting 4398Hz, to finalise the vocal sound. The L1 also helps keep the vocals in the same place. Finally, the ‘Verb’ send on the ‘Vox1’ and ‘Vox2’ tracks goes to the ‘Verb’ aux, which has the Waves RVerb, and that pretty much glues everything together.”more
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