Hello community :)

I've been working on this for some time. Maybe I've been inspired by the heat waves we're going through.

But mainly, I've always loved Dragons and I thought it'd be great to dedicate a piece to these legendary creatures in my musical series on Mythical Creatures.

So here it is :

I think my productions are improving (hopefully), thanks to your tips and all I could read in forums such as this one.

I've been improving my production skills (hopefully), thanks to the advices, tricks and techniques I could learn here especially, but I'm still struggling with overlaying which I use a lot to thicken my sound and create other sounds than the"out of the box" libraries (which I also love :).

The downside of this technique is the amount of work in the mix on post-production and the need to adjust very precisely each instrument's frequency to avoid masking and other unpleasant audio surprises.

If you have any good tip about large mixings or modern orchestral techniques, I'll be more than happy to learn :)

Have a great day and stay safe!



  • Epico!

  • This is an amazing production!

    In regards to your problems, I can certainly relate to them. I can deal with a small enough mix, but once it gets big it gets hard to handle.

    Personally, I started looking at the problem from a mixing perspective. Is it really a problem with the instrument? Or can I change it by other effects like EQ or compression? (I also put some saturation, it does make a minor but nice difference!)

    If I do have to overlay, I started assigning CC controls to each layer so that I can automate the blend between the two layers. There are instances where I would find a nice thick sound, coming back days later realizing it's standing out too much and masking, then I would automate them. There are times where I would realized that one super soft layer would be enough!

    I think (you probably understand this as well), as we build DAW templates, we would save combinations of instruments that we really like and think are really useful. Then as time goes one we would make more and more modifications. I think it's just simply the idea of committing yourself to never stop tweaking your template - the more you tweak it (in a good way, of course), the better and the less tweaking you will need.

    Three months ago I was working with my template and I was just frustrated with it. So what I did is on the next day, I took a few hours, and just built the template from scratch. It was not perfect, but then I realized that maybe some sounds are not thick because everything around it is much thicker. From then on I kept in mind not to make everything thick (or make instruments "out-thick" each other). This might just be my own problem, but it was interesting to note.

    Slowly and slowly as time evolved I started putting in EQ that is preset to the specific instrument, and then I would fine tune them as time goes along.

    As for this piece, great job as always :) The epicness and the thickness is present :) Really loved the fast staccato string (cello I think) lines

    Hope my reflection above helps!

  • Uh, Epic Sebastien, yeah, I love when it gets big, too.

    Well, to begin with, the data compression really mangles the highs pretty harshly with the glittering aliasing in those choirs, which is a bit of a shame. But aside from that, what I find consistently somewhat off-putting is the timing of the choirs, which never hits on time and isn't delayed enough to feel purposely pushed back, you know. I think, if you had at least a few of the notes moved to take in account their delay, it would begin feeling more deliberate again.

    As for the mix, well, it's hard to judge with the compression (data compression! Not mix compression), but it does certainly feel thick and wide.

    At 2:49 it really comes into its own with that wonderfully amazing growling. So organic and massive! Great combination!

    At 3:19 the combination of pizz and staccatos and/or spics that come in somehow feel a bit like a computer game score for a moment in a not so flattering way, if you asked me. I would've probably dropped all higher strings for that or detached them rhythmically and even pushed the higher parts up by another octave to not let them unisono those ticks. But that's not your question, I know, hehe... can't help myself, sorry.

    Overall, again, beautifully epic, truly big. I'm inclined to say something really odd, but it does feel a bit labored, too, like one can tell you are crafting something. By now I may have made a fair number of orchestral explorations, but I still don't feel entitled to give reliable advice. However, I can tell you how I approach it thus far and I honestly haven't tried layering yet for a number of reasons. Chief among them is my lack of faith that it was possible to avoid cognitive dissonance, if you mix the same instruments of different libraries, for example. Unless they were all recorded in an anechoic room, you'll face spatial confusions that swiftly abstract sounds in a way that may unfavorably push perception into a synthetic or unfathomable territory for a listener. It becomes a sort of wash. But I honestly simply don't have any reasonable experience with it other than what I perceive when listening to layered tracks like that. Maybe I should give it a proper try!? 🤓

    However, your tracks are always fascinating and an adventure to listen to! Rock on! 😎

  • Hello and thank you very very much for taking time to share your reflections!!

    They are very helpful and I'm really gonna think about my templates approach as well. I've actually built very practical templates more than specific matching libraries I would use because I always feel like I need to be absolutely free when it comes to choosing the instruments I'll use.

    Of course, it brings me to where I actually stand : keeping using favorite instruments, sounds and libraries again and again because I'm still a musician before being a composer I think.

    There's always a kind of a demonstration I need to make, especially when I work on themes I'd like to post at a specific time on my channel to keep up with the schedule.

    But as I'm writing, I realize it is another brick in my problematic wall 😁

    So anyway, thanks a lot for your thoughts, they will stick to my mind and will help me next time I'm in front of my scores ;)

    Have a beautiful day and stay safe!


  • Hello and thank you so much for your precise and accurate feedback, Taron. It's always a pleasure to read your words.

    I see exactly what you mean with the vocals and the specific parts you mentioned.

    To begin with, I think I should've taken more time on this one because I was excited about it but also felt what you're talking about in terms of laboring and crafting. I still feel like I'm on a quest, especially because I'm between several thoughts : being consistent on my YouTube channel, and keep on posting more stuff.

    But it comes with a downside I'm very aware of : it gives me few time to take a step back and work on a more realistic timing for composition.

    What you mention about space and sounds is also very interesting as a general and fundamental question on how to use the libraries we use. Working with other producers and sound engineers (which I'm not) has always been refreshing and with the years, I've been able to improve my techniques. But I've been working on bigger and bigger tracks and I think the overwhelming feeling of having more and more sounds, instruments and textures might be a problem I have to solve.

    Thanks again for your precious advices ; they are very useful and I'll take time to work on those topics, at least when I come back to my tracks to post them on Spotify (which I really want to do).

    Have a great day and stay safe ;)