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Author Topic: Recording Junk Noise  (Read 3121 times)
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.:Will:.
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« on: December 10, 2017, 01:12:14 PM »

What are some good techniques for recording junk noise?

Mic'ing like a standard studio?
Strictly contact mics?

I like the loud powerful sounds of some parts of Grunt, Sadio, Mania etc.

Get my drift?
Thanks in advance.
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Andrew McIntosh
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« Reply #1 on: December 11, 2017, 10:46:39 AM »

I've had very satisfactory results just pushing crap up against the microphone, sans effects or anything else. Raw, primitive, probably not a good idea for anyone else to listen to, but it works for me.

Just record fucking loud.
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Jaakko V.
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« Reply #2 on: December 11, 2017, 05:11:38 PM »

What are some good techniques for recording junk noise?

Mic'ing like a standard studio?
Strictly contact mics?

I like the loud powerful sounds of some parts of Grunt, Sadio, Mania etc.

Get my drift?
Thanks in advance.

Often the contact mic is not necessarily best for loud and powerful sounds of that type. The sound often benefits from the actual room acoustics, the 'feeling' of a loud impact on metal. So it's more a question of mic placement, like in a studio. But experimentation is the key, there are other factors at play also. So maybe it's best to just try it out...
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Stipsi
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« Reply #3 on: December 14, 2017, 03:15:02 PM »

For my personal experience the best is a couple of  mics placed in different places, with the gain of the mixer crunchy with no other effects.
Contact mics are not the best for recording junk loud.
It's more straight in your face but not really loud
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FreakAnimalFinland
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« Reply #4 on: December 20, 2017, 10:52:15 AM »

Often the contact mic is not necessarily best for loud and powerful sounds of that type. The sound often benefits from the actual room acoustics, the 'feeling' of a loud impact on metal. So it's more a question of mic placement, like in a studio. But experimentation is the key, there are other factors at play also. So maybe it's best to just try it out...

Sound is not only caused by microphone, but other elements as well. Few things to consider is, that actual physical loudness and act of utmost power may not transform well into recording. Meaning, to have sheet of metal and sledgehammer it as intensively as you can, may result very shitty sound. Contact mic merely suppressed by shock of sound, resulting tinny and shitty "click" instead of good sounding crash. They are very sensitive. Same may happen with regular dynamic microphone too.

Too much distortion, too much efx in general usually flattens the sound. Using too big and loud amps may flatten the sound as well, just make it kind of crude mid-range crackle instead of using full spectrum of possibilities.

First of all, metal needs to be good. I'm surprised how many attempt to survive with little shakerboxes or little slice. As if would be too big task to elevate beyond "that'll do" -attitude. Looking around a bit more, and testing what kind of object, made out of what kind of metal, will give good result, is not that huge task. When one got the source material that is good, then actual creation is far more better than trying to "mix" or "process" good stuff out of lame sounds.

Second, of course it is possible to make colossal sounding and brutal metal junk in typical digital gear, but there is often drastic difference, and most of all easiness of using analogue recorder. Natural analogue compression of all-on-red recording of acoustic metal junk, even merely microphone plugged directly to 4-track or tape deck, with zero efx, mixers or such, may have greatest results.

It's worth to investigate what happens in quiet metal sounds, recorded with intense gain levels. To capture not only object, but entire room. Possibly multiple microphones, in different places. Things like having 4-tracker, with 1 line with contact mic on sheet of metal, 1-3 more dynamic or condenser microphones on other channels. In different places and angles. Mere acoustic no-overdubs metal junk sessions may sound complex, multi-layered and utterly detailed when few different objects are captured with different microphones and blending and saturating with high-gain-input method of recording.

This doesn't necessarily require having rehearsal place as actual volume may remain moderate.

Good examples could be some early The New Blockaders, where metal sounds are highly interesting. Rarely brutally loud, but full of detail and texture. If one looks for absolute ripping loudness, doing same as mentioned before, but connecting 4-track output to PA/Stereosystem/amplifier to involve needed level of feedback. When recorder is part of the feedback process, rather than capturing feedback of other objects, there are quite many possibilities. Inserting feedback loop via aux or whatever, what can be used to enhance live recording process even further, which creates often better results than editing the source material.

To record high volume, and very large objects, is difficult task. Often not very satisfactory results. It may look impressive, and sound huge at the moment of making, but result of recording may be way "smaller" and weaker sounding than rather quiet recording where one manages to get full sound spectrum of objects.
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Major Carew
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« Reply #5 on: December 22, 2017, 12:03:50 PM »


Throwing my hat in the ring:

If using contact mic - use clamps to secure and as large diaphragm mic as possible to make sure all the heavier (low/low mid) frequency wavelengths translate powerfully.

If using room mic - use a dynamic mic with as large a diaphragm as possible , or standard stage mics can work great.

In any case, use the largest and most resonant piece of metal you can, and find objects that are completely at odds with what is being used as a base for everything. (i.e. things that scrape, hit,and so on) Additionally, just because a piece of junk looks cool (things with spikes, sledgehammers etc) , 9 times out of 10 it doesn't sound cool. Make sure you have sufficient amounts of gain at each stage of your signal, and remember your signal is only as good as the weakest link in the chain.

Seen so many people trying to do junk metal with postage stamp pieces of metal with shitty quality broken mics etc and wondering why they can't get good sound. Just some basic common sense and trial & error is the way to go.
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« Reply #6 on: December 17, 2018, 09:26:21 AM »

I've been recording junk metal material with my Tascam. Really love the textures it is able to capture. The basement that was my "studio" had a natural reverb that translated really well onto the device. I'm far more impressed with the results I get now than when I was using contact mics and regular vocal mics.

Question - now when it comes to a live setting, would I be able to emulate the Tascam recordings using a venue's drum/stage mics? I assume capturing cymbals isn't too far off beating and grinding metal fencing. Would prefer to do as much of the metal stuff live as possible instead of just relying on samples...
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l.b.
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« Reply #7 on: December 17, 2018, 05:21:19 PM »

Question - now when it comes to a live setting, would I be able to emulate the Tascam recordings using a venue's drum/stage mics? I assume capturing cymbals isn't too far off beating and grinding metal fencing. Would prefer to do as much of the metal stuff live as possible instead of just relying on samples...

assuming we're talking about a digital portable recorder here. unfortunately i think the answer is: not really. stage mics are basically "regular vocal mics" and it'll sound distinctly different than (again, assuming) the built in mic on the tascam. also if you're hitting these objects pretty loud, in the room you/the crowd will hear the actual acoustic sound of the metal as well as (or, god forbid, instead of) the electronic signal.
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Andrew McIntosh
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« Reply #8 on: December 18, 2018, 11:28:53 AM »

Question - now when it comes to a live setting, would I be able to emulate the Tascam recordings using a venue's drum/stage mics?

No, nor should you attempt to. Unless you have very specific ideas about what sound your trying to get in either recording or live cases, and even then don't hope too much. As you mentioned the sound of your recordings was assisted by the place you recorded in there's little if any chance of replicating that anywhere else.
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Cementimental
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« Reply #9 on: December 19, 2018, 08:06:37 PM »

i have to admit it does reallly bother me when someone has a load of fancy-looking scrap metal on stage and can you hear this roaring kvlt distorted version thru the PA but then also, loud and clear, the acoustic sounds of someone tidying up their potting shed

don't let it stop you trying tho!!

almost as bad as when you can hear true bypass guitar pedals clicking on and off :D


My concept for the most 2018 possible twist on playing back ur scrap metal sounds: record them in some bunker with stereo high quality digital recorder - get a 7" dubplate or lathe/s cut (not soo expensive these days_ - get those newfangled scratch-dj-friendly 7" portable turntable which are the big thing in turntablism right now, use those on stage (preferably with extra tonearms added)

 https://www.studioscratches.com/the-ultimate-guide-to-portable-scratching/
« Last Edit: December 19, 2018, 08:12:34 PM by Cementimental » Logged

sunandsteel
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« Reply #10 on: December 19, 2018, 09:24:55 PM »

i have to admit it does reallly bother me when someone has a load of fancy-looking scrap metal on stage and can you hear this roaring kvlt distorted version thru the PA but then also, loud and clear, the acoustic sounds of someone tidying up their potting shed
The material I recorded and want to emulate live isn't distorted or anything. It's pretty stripped down banging and grinding. I think I'll probably test it out and if it doesn't work, oh well, I'll have it backed up on my sampler.
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junkyardshaman
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« Reply #11 on: January 26, 2019, 03:17:48 PM »

I have basically either resonant junk instruments (with loads of springs) contact mic'd, or then plates and other shit I use with a contact mic that has a small metal shell, which gives it slightly more resonating room. I usually record them through amps if possible, but sometimes it's not. Mostly I just love the way guitar amps sound with the feedback and screeching and all that.
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