The Art of LOUD – Production masterclass with Thomas Penton

Discussion of music production, audio, equipment and any related topics, either with or without Ableton Live
darzhliebek
Posts: 57
Joined: Mon Nov 26, 2007 10:01 am
Location: UK

The Art of LOUD – Production masterclass with Thomas Penton

Post by darzhliebek » Wed Jul 27, 2011 5:56 pm

Hello guys, got a great article here that I think a lot of you will appreciate. We managed have a real good chat with chart-topping Thomas Penton about how to get the most out of all your sounds and how to get the loudness that is expected of dance tracks at the moment. I know a lot of tracks are too loud these days, but it is still essential knowledge. He's been kind enough to share lots of specifics (gear/settings) too :)

Hope you find it useful... it'd be good to hear your thoughts...
http://www.lostinmusik.net/?p=1646

Cheers,
Dave

Tone Deft
Posts: 23738
Joined: Mon Oct 02, 2006 5:19 pm
Location: SF, CA

Re: The Art of LOUD – Production masterclass with Thomas Penton

Post by Tone Deft » Wed Jul 27, 2011 6:19 pm

darzhliebek wrote:get the loudness that is expected of dance tracks at the moment. I know a lot of tracks are too loud these days, but...
but nothing. :x
"Obsession is a great substitute for talent." - Steve Martin on learning the banjo

Dell Inspiron 15 7000, Live 10.1, Win10 Home, Edirol UA101, APC40, Remote SL, SPD-SX, mic, guitars, JX305, Nova
soundcloud.com/tone-deft

darzhliebek
Posts: 57
Joined: Mon Nov 26, 2007 10:01 am
Location: UK

Re: The Art of LOUD – Production masterclass with Thomas Penton

Post by darzhliebek » Wed Jul 27, 2011 6:28 pm

Tone Deft wrote:
darzhliebek wrote:get the loudness that is expected of dance tracks at the moment. I know a lot of tracks are too loud these days, but...
but nothing. :x
Haha. Try see past the loudness wars side of this - there are some really good tips for how to give each element of a track the max amount of space. Whether people use them to make ears bleed or not is up to them (although I too would rather they didnt)

Tone Deft
Posts: 23738
Joined: Mon Oct 02, 2006 5:19 pm
Location: SF, CA

Re: The Art of LOUD – Production masterclass with Thomas Penton

Post by Tone Deft » Wed Jul 27, 2011 6:29 pm

:x


too much knowledge never hurts.


I guess.


:x
"Obsession is a great substitute for talent." - Steve Martin on learning the banjo

Dell Inspiron 15 7000, Live 10.1, Win10 Home, Edirol UA101, APC40, Remote SL, SPD-SX, mic, guitars, JX305, Nova
soundcloud.com/tone-deft

cubehog
Posts: 84
Joined: Sat Sep 29, 2007 9:04 am
Location: Magdeburg/GER
Contact:

Re: The Art of LOUD – Production masterclass with Thomas Penton

Post by cubehog » Thu Jul 28, 2011 5:15 am

Right after listening to the Thomas Penton tracks I listen to this (http://www.ulikringlertrio.de/).

And there you have it. Dynamics, modulation.

I´ve learnt the more complex an arrangement gets, the more it will benefit from a mastering approach which cares about transients, air and dynamics.
I´m 35 now and sometimes I am really puzzled why people are able to listen to tracks that are so compressed you have the feeling that even simple
elements have to fight for the center place on the stage.

The stage loses depth, becomes a beam filled with loudmouths screaming short phrases and all want to be in the middle.
As a theatergoer I´ll probably leave at around 10 mins while the play goes on for another hour.

What is going on? Does it have to be simple and loud because only then you get heard?

To end with a good note. There´s this 125hz freq and for beginners it is quite a good orientation aid to deal with bass frequencies.

timothyallan
Posts: 5788
Joined: Wed Nov 24, 2004 11:05 pm
Location: Melbourne Australia
Contact:

Re: The Art of LOUD – Production masterclass with Thomas Penton

Post by timothyallan » Thu Jul 28, 2011 6:42 am

Brutal article. Limit everything, put everything up to 0db, enhance it and limit it again. Even the screenshots everything is solely in the red! I'm going to go try it out!

Cezband
Posts: 584
Joined: Thu Oct 28, 2010 4:43 pm
Location: Oxford
Contact:

Re: The Art of LOUD – Production masterclass with Thomas Penton

Post by Cezband » Thu Jul 28, 2011 9:52 am

Interesting read - seems like he smashes the bejeezus out of the sounds - 0db, 0db, 0db....

It's actually kinda refreshing to hear a producer being so unashamed about loudness - most interviews like this, the producer is like "just a bit of warmth, a little bit more volume, a gentle touch" whereas he's like "Smash, limit, crush, destroy."

Anyone used that Sausage Fattener that he mentioned? It looks horrible :lol: but I like the idea of a characterful brick wall limiter thing due to the unsubtle nature of my own music. And it's only $30...
Live 7.0.18 | Axiom 61 | Launchpad | Homous | Nanokontrol | Saffire 6 | Ibanez Jazzmaster Bass | Biscuits
Soundcloud (solo stuff) | One Gear Go (my band)

darzhliebek
Posts: 57
Joined: Mon Nov 26, 2007 10:01 am
Location: UK

Re: The Art of LOUD – Production masterclass with Thomas Penton

Post by darzhliebek » Thu Jul 28, 2011 10:37 am

Loudness is one of those things where it has just escalated over time until now most tracks are close to the limit - as few sounds as possible so they can be as loud as possible. I think a track full of dynamics sounds good if all the tracks in the DJ set are full of dynamics, but that's just not the trend at the moment in most club music. Most clubbers just want to be rocked, hard. Totally depends on the purpose of the music.

I was amazed at how hard Penton pushes everything and it still doesnt distort, very good to know!

I've not tried the Sausage Fattener yet but at a fraction of the cost of the Oxford plugins it is definitely worth a shot.

doghouse
Posts: 1413
Joined: Fri Aug 29, 2008 5:30 pm

Re: The Art of LOUD – Production masterclass with Thomas Penton

Post by doghouse » Thu Jul 28, 2011 11:56 am

What I found really interesting is how much layering is going on (like doubling the attack on the kick) and also how he keeps everything but kick and subbass above 125Hz.

That article is going to sell a lot of Oxford Inflators :mrgreen:

ollyb303
Posts: 2666
Joined: Wed Jun 25, 2008 3:49 pm
Location: Bristol, UK
Contact:

Re: The Art of LOUD – Production masterclass with Thomas Penton

Post by ollyb303 » Thu Jul 28, 2011 12:06 pm

Very interesting - contrary to a lot of what I've always considered to be best practice, but I will definitely be taking something away from the article.
.:O:B:1:.
ob1techno.com

Cezband
Posts: 584
Joined: Thu Oct 28, 2010 4:43 pm
Location: Oxford
Contact:

Re: The Art of LOUD – Production masterclass with Thomas Penton

Post by Cezband » Fri Jul 29, 2011 8:37 am

Am I right in thinking that he's essentially undertaking the mastering process while mixing the song? If everything is flat out at 0db all the way, that's not leaving any room for a mastering engineer to play with. Unless I am misunderstanding (which is easily possible :) )
Live 7.0.18 | Axiom 61 | Launchpad | Homous | Nanokontrol | Saffire 6 | Ibanez Jazzmaster Bass | Biscuits
Soundcloud (solo stuff) | One Gear Go (my band)

darzhliebek
Posts: 57
Joined: Mon Nov 26, 2007 10:01 am
Location: UK

Re: The Art of LOUD – Production masterclass with Thomas Penton

Post by darzhliebek » Fri Jul 29, 2011 10:14 am

Cezband wrote:Am I right in thinking that he's essentially undertaking the mastering process while mixing the song? If everything is flat out at 0db all the way, that's not leaving any room for a mastering engineer to play with. Unless I am misunderstanding (which is easily possible :) )

That's right - he does some final mastering with T-RackS afterwards but that is just a bit of sweetening. He technically masters the track as he goes.

The Carpet Cleaner
Posts: 1128
Joined: Sat May 16, 2009 2:21 pm
Location: Paris

Re: The Art of LOUD – Production masterclass with Thomas Penton

Post by The Carpet Cleaner » Fri Jul 29, 2011 2:01 pm

I was about to critisize without even reading the article, just for fun, but after listening to your tracks, I have to admit it is loud.
so I'm gonna read the article, thanks dude !

chris vine
Posts: 675
Joined: Fri Jul 22, 2005 2:01 am
Location: Brazil

Re: The Art of LOUD – Production masterclass with Thomas Penton

Post by chris vine » Fri Jul 29, 2011 9:54 pm

cubehog wrote:Right after listening to the Thomas Penton tracks I listen to this (http://www.ulikringlertrio.de/).

And there you have it. Dynamics, modulation.
Yes but as stated in the article - loud is the thing - at least for THAT "dance" genre. :roll: Flatlining everything obviously wouldn't work with the music in the link you posted. There's something to be said for removing low freqs from tracks like vocals to keep the bottom turning to sludge.

Bet he doesn't use K-metering then :)

Sibanger
Posts: 2225
Joined: Thu Oct 26, 2006 7:44 am
Location: Melbourne/Australia
Contact:

Re: The Art of LOUD – Production masterclass with Thomas Penton

Post by Sibanger » Fri Jul 29, 2011 11:24 pm

"Smash, limit, crush, destroy."
:lol:

Post Reply