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John Bradley

Enter Sandman - Metallica cover

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Enter Sandman

Not quite '80s... (August 1991). Missed it by that much. Still, it came out a few weeks before Nirvana's Nevermind made everyone notice that the '80s were officially over, so close enough for rock.

Note that they end the song by deconstructing it (basically doing the intro in reverse), whereas I stay in full 'rock' mode until the end. That's because a subset of these tracks would serve as backing tracks for my 3pc band, and that's how we always performed it. Sorta quaint, now that 'performances' are a thing of the past.

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Drums: Session Drummer 3, as per usual, running into a big ol' BREVERB 'hall'.

Bass: IKM's MODO BASS "bass man" model, for what little that matters. Doing the amp/fx thing within MODO. More than a little bit of shaping and crunch added with the ProChannel EQ and Tube Saturation thingies.

Percussion: none. Metallica don't need no cowbell!

Synths: none. Throw enough guitars at the mix and you don't need synths, either.

Guitars: The acoustic bit that starts the song (and reappears during the breakdown) is a pair of acoustics playing the riff an octave part for faux 12-stringy goodness. From there they go to a bus that's got two different phasers on it (Blue Cat's freebie Phaser, and Native Instrument's freebie Phasis) and a very wet hall BREVERB.

A lead guitar (with wah) comes on top of the acoustic bit. Done in Axiom. (a gate into a wah, into an amp, with some reverb on the output). Later in the song an Arturia Delay ETERNITY comes in during the actual solo.

When the main riff kicks in, the lead pans hard right and a second guitar comes in panned hard left. Additionally there's the "double the root of the guitar on a bass's D string" trick running through a dual-amp setup panned hard left/right. It's very subtle, just adding a slight bit of girth to the bottom. I hear it if I solo the guitar bus and mute/unmute the track. Not sure it adds anything to the mix at all. The second guitar and the bass thing were also done in Axiom.

Vocals: The main vocal is double tracked all the way through the song. The two tracks are each processed their own instance of NECTAR 2. The 'lead' of the pair has a single-voice unison harmony effect (in Nectar), panned slightly left, and the 'doubled' track is 4dbs quieter and panned slightly right. Other than the fake harmony on the lead, there's no 'digital' fx (mod, delay) on either track, just gate + compressor + saturation + EQ + de-esser + limiter, in that order. And then a BREVERB on the 'lead vox' bus.

Backing Vocals: There's a single voice during the prechorus ("Sleep with one eye open"), a second voice at the start of the chorus ("exit light"), and both of them doing some actual harmony with each other (and the lead) on the "take my hand" bit. The first voice also holds down the low end in the second verse ("dreams of war, dreams of liars...") while the lead voice goes high. Finally, a third voice enters right before the final double-chorus. ("It's just the beast under your bed")

All the backing vox are doubled (legit!, not via an effect) and panned left/right to varying degrees. No FX other than ProChannel gate + comp + EQ +sat on each track, and some reverb on the bus.

Spoken section: Both the adult and child tracks run through their own set of Blue Cat Phaser + Blue Cat Late Replies + BREVERB. Not having a child handy, I'm pretty sure I used Melodyne to screw with the pitch/formants on the child track, but it was a destructive process, so I'm not sure at this point. Helium was not involved, of that I'm certain. Went with a spacey echoey thing for the spoken section as a "look over here!" misdirection from the not particularly realistic child voice.

 

Melodyne Studio 4 making the vocals listenable, and Ozone 8 sitting on the master bus being all master-y.

 

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Hi John

Great job, loved this - had me foot tapping, as they say!!

Great guitars, especially the solo,  and vocals

Nigel

 

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57 minutes ago, Bajan Blue said:

Great job, loved this - had me foot tapping, as they say!!

"It's got a great beat - you can dance to it!" 🤩

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Jeeze, this is creepily spot on. You do such a good job on these. Loved reading your mix breakdiown, thanks for that. Your vocals totally work and sound full and interesting all the way through. You've got those cool little vocal mannerisms, that Hetfield does, down. So great!

cheers,

-Tom

 

 

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3 hours ago, emeraldsoul said:

You've got those cool little vocal mannerisms, that Hetfield does, down. So great!

Thanks! Had a sore throat for 2 days after recording the lead vocals... I don't have much cause to yell and/or growl in my day-to-day life. 🤕

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By 91 I had sort of moved on from what had become metal having had the luxury of being educated by the likes of Black Sabbath, Black Widow, Led Zeppelin, Taste etc.

Consequently never got in those 80 "Heavy Metal" bands or the subsequent derivatives.  Mix sound much as I suspect it should, perhaps just a tad more chest crushing kick but...... 

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This is a great representation of the genre. I liked the mix overall. I would only say that to my ears it seemed just a little bit too much in the mids and slightly lacking on the bass. Since I seldom mix anything like this I'm sure you had your reasons and it could be my ear buds aren't really translating it accurately. Turned up loud this mix would really cut and carry due to that mid bump I'm hearing.

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