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Double-Tracking Vocal Parts Made Easy For Charles Nieland

How did you get into audio production?

My first taste of audio production was in high school when I set up two cassette decks, a dj mixer and a microphone, bouncing tracks back and forth between the two machines to build up a glorious hissy cloud of multi tracked bass, guitar, kitchen pots and garden tools. I was transformed.

The process of audio production fascinates me in its different settings; from the group collaborations of music projects like Debbie Harry or Her Vanished Grace (my band), to the shifting demands and detailed time consciousness of scoring films like The Safety Of Objects or NY77: The Coolest Year In Hell.

It reminds me of cooking where you allow the ingredients and flavors to merge, layer, separate and then experience them in time. You can dream it and make it real so quickly now. Logic Pro is my DAW of choice.

What projects have you been working on recently?

A variety of things as usual; the electronic atmospheres of Cloud from the Sea, the dance pop of Dina Delicious, the dark, romantic indie rock of Dead Leaf Echo, the lush guitars of Deepfieldview, the edgy, ethereal elegance of Oh Halo, the glowing anthems of Corey Tut and the power dream pop of Her Vanished Grace.   

“Collaborate and produce music with your artists not just at them. Good music production is about talking and listening, even more so than gear or even technique.”

Which Synchro Arts products do you use for audio processing?

I use both Revoice Pro and VocALign.

Why do you use our products?

They open up the imagination by freeing me to work on musical production instead of the massive editing that was required to create precise doubles out of multiple vocal takes.

What do you find most useful about our products?

I like VocALign because it is a plug in that I can use quickly to sync up vocals and other elements within Logic. Revoice Pro is great because you can synch many takes at once and you can create doubles from nothing

Is there a go-to feature you keep going back to our product for?

First, the APT Process in Revoice Pro. If you have a song with a lot of unison or harmonised vocal tracks, it is invaluable for blending the many layers seamlessly, allowing each vocal section to have a distinct character, while keeping clean the beginning, middle and ending of phrases so that the layers act in total support of the lead. Being able to use the lead performances as a guide to create tight doubles out of the many target signals makes the process possible to do without the hours of editing it would take to do by hand. And the ability to do multiple APT processes at once with the Revoice Pro saves even more time.

Also, the Doubler Process in Revoice Pro. When you only have a single vocal performance and are looking for the lushness that doubled vocals would provide, you can use the Revoice Pro Doubling Process to make them. The results lend themselves to creating a variety of spatial effects; using doubles with stereo modulation blended with the original tracks to create a center oriented dense wet sound or panning the doubles hard from their counterparts to get an extra wide feeling of stereo separation.

What advice would you give to someone who is just starting out in audio production?

Collaborate and produce music with your artists not just at them. Good music production is about talking and listening, even more so than gear or even technique. Let your artist’s feelings and ideas in and you’ll find the whole process starts to move on its own.

Is there anything else you would like to share with the audio community?

Stay open-minded and appreciate the opportunities that you are presented with to work on in music, movies, books or whatever comes your way in this fast changing world. You never know where something is going to lead.

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