Drums on the new album?

The latest news on the upcoming album for 09.

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Post by FredProgGH » Sun Sep 27, 2009 11:16 pm

I think we sound better on this album than in the past. We spent more time and worried more about finding parts that were comfortable for us to sing. Suzie sings about 75% of the lead stuff probably.
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Post by Japes » Mon Sep 28, 2009 5:23 am

FredProgGH wrote:I think we sound better on this album than in the past. We spent more time and worried more about finding parts that were comfortable for us to sing. Suzie sings about 75% of the lead stuff probably.
Well, nonetheless, I can't wait you hear you and Steve's vocals. :)
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27 "But I tell you who hear me: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, 28 bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. 29 If someone strikes you on one cheek, turn to him the other also. If someone takes your cloak, do not stop him from taking your tunic. 30 Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back. 31 Do to others as you would have them do to you.

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Post by shanocles » Tue Sep 29, 2009 6:21 am

FredProgGH wrote:I think we sound better on this album than in the past. We spent more time and worried more about finding parts that were comfortable for us to sing. Suzie sings about 75% of the lead stuff probably.
could you elaborate a bit more? like did you guys do more effects on the vocals or whatever they call it...

also, as a drummer myself, i like your playing fred. its well thought out. not too over the top but still proggy enough (BTW in no way am i saying matt's is, he's also VERY good).
from the lex live dvd it showed you playing an electric kit (in the extras - knight of the north wasn't it?).
do you use that here?
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Post by FredProgGH » Tue Sep 29, 2009 9:45 am

I'll tell after you guys hear it :P
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Post by Japes » Tue Sep 29, 2009 1:47 pm

FredProgGH wrote:I'll tell after you guys hear it :P
D:

That is all.
Luke 6:27-31
27 "But I tell you who hear me: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, 28 bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. 29 If someone strikes you on one cheek, turn to him the other also. If someone takes your cloak, do not stop him from taking your tunic. 30 Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back. 31 Do to others as you would have them do to you.

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Post by FredProgGH » Tue Sep 29, 2009 11:22 pm

Eh, what the hey, I'll tell you now:

Steve and I wanted to use Toontrack DFH Superior, the same technology I used for the Trurl album. I was a beta-tester for Toontrack for a few years and they are doing things with drum sampling that compares to everyone else's stuff like a modern quadcore pc compares to a Commodore PET. (Kids, Google it :P)*

Anyhoo, We've never been 1000% satisfied with the drum sound on any GH album. (I'm talking about the recording, not the kits or the players.) When I used the DDrums and whatever samplers we had available we pushed it as far as we could but I've always been bugged that you can tell they are sampled. With acoustic drums the feel is better but it's really hard to get a world class sound without going to a really expensive high-end room to do it. We've felt better about going acoustic when we wanted a vintage feel, like Chronometree and IS. So, Superior takes care of the sound issue- they sound realistic and give you the sonic quality of several $1,000,000 recording environments. They also take a pretty sophisticated rig to trigger from pads and get the most out of them. We tried it for several songs with Matt playing an electronic kit and there were major complications which I didn't have time to resolve. The easiest way was for me to sit down, work out how I would play the song live, and then program it all from the keyboard. This is basically what Devon Townsend Band did for their last project (using the same software).

This has advantages: I could get sounds that matched the song; a classic Ringo kit for one, a modern heavy rock kit for another, more obviously programmed techno drums on another. You get the idea. Mostly we wanted a serious well produced huge sound but some songs have a more classic 60's feel. At least 2 songs I programmed to be way faster and tighter than I could probably have done it in real life. The rest correspond pretty closely to what I would have (tried to have) done on a real kit.

For those of you that want to hear a little of what I have done in the past with DFHS, check out my free track here (you will have to register I think):

http://thundersongs.com/free/free.php?user=trurl

-scroll down the page to find it. BTW, feel free to buy the Trurl if you haven't already :P :P :)

Bear in mind this was an early experiment with DFHS and represents the technology of a couple years ago. Three Cheers was done almost exclusively with the brand new Metal Foundry Expansion under Superior 2.0

------------------------
*BTW don't start posting about how sweet the PET was. I know it was totally sweet. It's just an analogy.
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Post by Bnielsen » Thu Oct 01, 2009 8:11 am

:shock:

See, now THAT'S what I'm TALKING about!

Lovely details there Fred =)


So, a question - In my mind, drum samples were always easy to catch becuase there used to be no variation in the sound produced besides volume: a snare hit was a snare hit, where if you recorded someone hitting a snare drum, there could be a wide variation in the tone produced depending on where and how hard it was hit.

I know that in a lot of new digitally sampled instruments, using my Casio Privia for instance, they now have multiple samples for each note, so that there is variance in each time the key is played.

I'm assuming the new digital drums you are using have that random factor and multiple samples that kinda do the same thing?
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Post by FredProgGH » Thu Oct 01, 2009 10:03 am

In the early days that was known as machine-gun effect. DFHS uses about 35Gb of samples, with several thousand samples per drum. Drums are sampled with separate hits for left and right hand, usually at about 12 different velocity levels, and ever playing style (edge hit, center hit, rim-shot, etc.) All open mics are sampled for bleed for every drum. It's probably one of the most absurdly detailed sample-sets in existence.
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Post by Japes » Thu Oct 01, 2009 1:51 pm

Wow, that's awesome!

I really don't know what to say.
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27 "But I tell you who hear me: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, 28 bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. 29 If someone strikes you on one cheek, turn to him the other also. If someone takes your cloak, do not stop him from taking your tunic. 30 Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back. 31 Do to others as you would have them do to you.

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Post by FredProgGH » Thu Oct 01, 2009 9:44 pm

Say nothing! Stand in quiet awe before the majesty of Toontrack DFHS! :P

OK, just kidding, but it is pretty cool. Brian's right, sampled drums used to be very nasty sounding but the huge amount of memory you can get on a pc has really changed how they do it. And that applies to pianos and other acoustic instruments. The piano(s) on the new album sound awesome and they're all sampled.

Strings and such, not so much still- they are way better but having a real trio is better :)
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Post by Bnielsen » Thu Oct 01, 2009 10:57 pm

FredProgGH wrote:In the early days that was known as machine-gun effect. DFHS uses about 35Gb of samples, with several thousand samples per drum. Drums are sampled with separate hits for left and right hand, usually at about 12 different velocity levels, and ever playing style (edge hit, center hit, rim-shot, etc.) All open mics are sampled for bleed for every drum. It's probably one of the most absurdly detailed sample-sets in existence.
::deep breath:: whoa.

That's fantastic, Fred! I love it!
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Post by Japes » Fri Oct 02, 2009 5:05 am

So, I'm still a TEENSY bit confused. Tell me if this is right:

The drums are not actual recorded drums, they're recorded on the keyboard, but they were figured out on the real drum set (which wasn't used because it was too difficult to get to work with the samples properly) and the keyboard sounds comparable because of the variation in drum hits via the new samples. The keyboard also uses samples for its piano sounds, as opposed to its normal piano synth.

Amirite?
Luke 6:27-31
27 "But I tell you who hear me: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, 28 bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. 29 If someone strikes you on one cheek, turn to him the other also. If someone takes your cloak, do not stop him from taking your tunic. 30 Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back. 31 Do to others as you would have them do to you.

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Post by FredProgGH » Fri Oct 02, 2009 7:51 am

Yeah, pretty much. This is all happening on a computer. The keyboard is nothing but an input device.
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Post by Japes » Fri Oct 02, 2009 1:48 pm

Okay, okay. Now I get it. Sounds cool.

Have you ever, by chance, heard of ZREOmusic.com? I don't know if you, or anyone here for that matter, is a Zelda fan, but they take Nintendo's midi music of Zelda games, and reorchestrated it (ZREO=Zelda Re-Orchestrated) using high quality samples. It's pretty cool, you should check it out, if you're into Zelda or anything like that, that is.

If the samples you guys are using are even on par with those (I'm guessing they're even better from what you've been saying, even though they are much different) then I'll be very pleased.
Last edited by Japes on Fri Oct 02, 2009 5:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Luke 6:27-31
27 "But I tell you who hear me: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, 28 bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. 29 If someone strikes you on one cheek, turn to him the other also. If someone takes your cloak, do not stop him from taking your tunic. 30 Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back. 31 Do to others as you would have them do to you.

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Post by FredProgGH » Fri Oct 02, 2009 5:17 pm

I have heard of that, I think I may have heard a bit of it somewhere. I'll check it out...
"The baloney is yodeling" -- [i]Jon Arbuckle[/i]

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