When Mastering has Done its Duty

I read on Facebook a few weeks ago that mixing your own album was a surefire route to insanity. They were right. I went through the mill last week and have also been on the steepest learning curve since picking up Pro Tools for the first time about 18months ago.

The mixing was done, then it was off to Aubitt for Rob Aubrey to weave his mastering magic on it. Well that was the plan, but I quickly learned that mastering also stands for lets see how your mix stands up to the kind of pro standard that Rob puts together on Big Big Train records. The answer was OK , but could do better! So I went away armed with a list of problems and remixed, came back, remaster, problems found, went away and came back…….several times.
Rob thought the end section to On Which We Stand was great but needed a bit more drama. He went delving off into his sample bank and within 10minutes had grafted in a set of Moog Taurus bass pedal samples all in perfect time and tune, like Mike Rutherford had stepped into the session to accompany Simon Rogers spine tingling solo. I’ve since dubbed it the ‘voice of God’.
Two weeks later and we’re finally done. It’s now twice the record it was when I first took it to Rob, and now I have twice the knowledge too. It’s painful when people start picking holes in your mix but it’s so worth borrowing the ears of those who have the experience like Rob and also Lee Abraham who told me from Day 1, ‘make it the best it can be’. That means no deadlines and ‘it’s not finished til it’s finished
Graeme Bell delivered the artwork last week and it looks great. Graeme’s really making a name for himself as a top Digital Artist, and I hope he goes from strength to strength.
Anyway all done, off to the duplicators and release date will be announced in a few days time.

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