So Far We're So Far Away

TripleM

Well-known member
A while back I wanted to write a "James Bond type" song. This is that. The kind of song that plays over the opening credits of a Bond movie. But like the classic 60's Sean Connery movies. Like Thunderball or something. So there is a lot of reverb on this (for me anyway). As the self-appointed site reverb nazi I'm prepared to take my punishment. :)

But I was going for a classic Bond movie sound. I dulled the snare and overheads - to reduce the high-high-end. I played around with reverbs. The only reverb I like on this is the reverb on the guitar riff. I'll probably play around more with the reverbs on this. Because I don't think I got anywhere near a classic 60's Bond movie sound. I didn't think I'd get 100% there, but I thought I'd get close than this.

IBB did the drums. They're excellent. Kick sound is cool and so are the toms.

Mix #1
SoFarSoFarAway.mp3 - Google Drive

Mix #2
SoFarSoFarAway2.mp3 - Google Drive

Lyrics for the curious:

So Far We're So Far Away
Take a chair - check your hair
Make believe you care
God save the Queen and all of that
Act debonair

It's a ticking clock affair
So slip below the glare
You're the planet's wingman
Pick your nom de guerre

This battle's not for show
It's a victory you'll never know
And with a silky trigger touch
It's better that you don't say too much

I hate it when you stare
You're not really there
It's time to kill
Time to fly off to anywhere

CHORUS
Yeah we might live or die today
But so far we're so far away

Alterations have occurred
Shaken not stirred
So get that blood or lipstick off of your lapel

Battle lines are blurred
Give me your word
He could be here, he could be gone, you'll never tell

So lose your former soul
You get a new one back in trade
Forget you're in control
Forget about the plans you made.

Just blend in with the herd
Kill shot conferred
Just know belief and poison pills are both inferred

CHORUS

BRIDGE
Put on your cape, it's time to fight that sinister creation
Bang, sizzle, boom when it gets launched from some remote ice station
It's on its way, a nod from God, so grab hold of the comet
The illuminatti? They ain't scared, they all know that you're on it
Faces turn to places, and we're so far away
So far, so far away

SOLO

Shoot him 'till you're done
Get up, get on, get out
Don't ever let them trace a shot back to your gun

This war's not nearly won
It isn't even halftime
There's still room for all of us to have some fun

I wish we had the time
To borrow truth and make it mine
And hear it through the whine
Of an unprotected, dirty line

So chase the setting sun
It's a consequence of power
That you fix it all and go back on the run

CHORUS
CHORUS
 
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Robus

New member
Good song. Good playing by you and Dave.

I'll get the ball rolling. The low end is tubby. I hear it in the drums and maybe guitars. I'd suggest high-passing most or all of your tracks if you aren't doing that already. Kick at 25Hz maybe, bass at 50Hz, guitars at 100-150Hz, etc. Should clean that mix right up.
 

andrushkiwt

Well-known member
I heard the tubbiness when the toms came in. Guitars are fine. I'd EQ the whole drum bus around that 200-300hz area, scoop around and clean out that muddy stuff. Vocals are getting buried right from the start.

Am I hearing a bad edit at 1:02? Otherwise, this is really good. Had me head boppin
 

jimistone

long standing member
I think you did a good job of capturing a 60's style groove, song, and tone. I agree about the low end being a little tubby. Most 60's pop tunes had a thin low end. Lead guitar is very 60's sounding as is the vocal. The bridge is very 60's with the stabs . Great drum performance by IBB. I love the song...good writing.
Fantastic piece of work!
 

VomitHatSteve

Hat STYLE. Not contents.
Gdrive is throwing 502 errors on it. Do you have it hosted somewhere else that I might grab?

edit: other public g-drive links are also erroring out now too. I'll just try to check it out later, I guess.
 

VomitHatSteve

Hat STYLE. Not contents.
Ok. Google is back.

If I were to describe classic Bond themes in a single phrase, it would be "lounge music". This, uhhhh... is not lounge music. I like it, but it sounds little to nothing like the Thunderball theme.

So do you want critiques as to how to make this more like a Bond theme or commentary on the mix in a vacuum?
 

TripleM

Well-known member
So do you want critiques as to how to make this more like a Bond theme or commentary on the mix in a vacuum?

I'd like adice on how to make it more like a Bond theme sonically. Thunderball was just the first movie that came to mind. There are Bond themes that don't sound like lounge music. Live and Let Die, and A View to a Kill are two that come to mind. This doesn't sound much like those either. But anyway, I'm looking more for the overall sound of classic Bond movie themes, not so much the song writing/performing style.

THanks.
 
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DM60

Well-known member
Well if that is your idea of reverb, dude, you are still the reverb nazi. Before I begin, I like the mix, but ...

Based on you wanting comment for a 60's song:
It is too forward, guitars are too fat, whole song is too thick, too little reverb, everything is just too modern. Maybe too hi-fi???

I think I know what you are going for, but there is too much vocal, not enough instruments. IMO, it needs to me more sparse, more distant (reverb man, reverb). Gold finger for example, female vocal, then the brass, vocals, so forth. They don't really use a lot of words on those songs. Just enough to get the point of the movie across.
 

TripleM

Well-known member
Mix #2 at the top. I agree the low end is a bit too much, especially for a song like this.

I didn't make much of a change. Slight EQ changes on the low end of the bass. Even slighter low end EQ changes on the kick. No track level volume adjustments.
 

TripleM

Well-known member
Robus - I think your observation on the low end was right. I adjusted.

andrush... - thank you for listening and critiquing.

jimi - thank you my man.

VHS - look forward to your comments

DM60 - Funny! Good to see I'm still the site reverb nazi. I'm going to play around more with the reverb and maybe post a new version in a couple of weeks or so.
 

VomitHatSteve

Hat STYLE. Not contents.
But anyway, I'm looking more for the overall sound of classic Bond movie themes

Horns. Especially muted trumpets and other "sultry" sounding instruments. (A saxophone would probably do in a pinch.)

Probably bury the drums (at least kick and snare) even more. Think ride-heavy jazz drumming. Maybe even brushes instead of sticks.

I think I fundamentally don't get what you're going for here. I can see how you're in the right decade, with a jangly 60s rock vibe. But they're so different. It'd be like if you said "I'm going for that 90s war epic feel, like Saving Private Ryan" and then it sounded like the Spice Girls. Both are good. Both are the same decade, but they're so dissimilar.

The only part of this that I could really picture in a classic bond theme is the desert-rock-style fuzzy lead. That'd be a good baseline for a bond theme.

So to brutally pick it apart, if I were to try to turn this into a bond theme...
Drums - turn the kick and snare down. Replace most of the hats with jazzy rides.
Lead guitar - more reverb, but it's pretty close. (I just pulled up The Man With the Golden Gun theme, and you're really close to that one)
rhythm guitar - replace them with strings and brass
bass - a little less definition maybe. Possibly go fretless if you can
Vox - get it closer to the center of your range. Every note needs to be sung with POWER. No straining, no nasallyness.

I don't know how helpful this is? Again, I think you did a good job of a TripM song. It's catchy and energetic and fun, but I can't picture this being a classic bond theme without basically a complete overhaul.
 
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Bulls Hit

Well-known member
I think VHS has probably nailed most of the points. As it stands I would not have picked this as being anything to do with a Bond theme. For me the groove is too bouncy and upbeat, and unless you change that I can't see Bond emerging from the shadows, regardless of what you do with the rest of it. As a Trip tune/collab, composition-wise it's really good. I like your guitar sounds and the vocal is great
 

TripleM

Well-known member
Alright I'm going to give up on being a Bond thing. But I will try to do a few things on VHS's list, re-do the reverb (make it wetter), and repost in a couple of weeks.
 
Sounds good. For Bond you'd have to branch out from just the rock 3 piece kind of sound though wouldn't you? I can feel the Bond idea in there though. I see what you went for.
 

JohnnyAmato

New member
Sounds good to me. I'm not really a Bond guy, so can't really comment on that, I just kind of pictured a video in my mind showing Bond clips while this was playing and I guess it worked, 'cuz it didn't feel out-of-place to me.

Seemed like, mainly in the beginning, the rhythm guitars were stepping on the vocal a bit, but it seemed to get better as the song played on. Listened twice to mix #2. I wanted a little more crisp-ness on the overall top end I think, but might not fit the genre. These are just small nits, 'cuz overall it sounds pretty damn good.

Nice job on the vocals and harmonies, sounds great. Bass guitar sounded a little dark, but again, probably fitting for this style.
 

TripleM

Well-known member
Monkey - thanks. Yeah I think you get what I was going for. Bond-y guitar riff, secret-agent lyrics. That sort of thing.

Johnny - appreciate the thoughts. I cut the high end on the overheads, snare, and hats to remove the crispness. As you implied, it was to try to fit the genre.
 

Robus

New member
Listening mix 2. Bottom is tighter. I like the width of your guitars. It leaves a nice open space for the vocal at stereo center. I struggle a bit to hear your lyrics easily. If it were me, I'd bump the lead vocal up by a dB or two. But I'm an extremist when it comes to intelligibility (gold standard IMO = every syllable of every word of every line CLEARLY intelligible on the first listen). Guitar tones sound good. Nice song. Altogether solid work.

Just curious: Most of all of your songs that I've heard have you singing up pretty high in your range. Is that a deliberate preference?
 

spantini

COO of me, inc.
I like it. I like it. I really like it :guitar:

Listening mix 2... I struggle a bit to hear your lyrics easily. If it were me, I'd bump the lead vocal up by a dB or two...

^ +1

____________________________

I really like that lead guitar riff up the center. Made me think of Secret Agent Man - Johnny Rivers. Maybe try yours a little cleaner with some reverb so it hints at that a bit.
 
Did some reading of comments and it's interesting you want to make it sound like a bond theme : ). Well i think you want a retro sound in that case, smaller sounds and more reverb. Guitars sound very good but they have a modern forward sound compared to what i would think of a James Bond sound. Imagine the original surf bond riff and how much reverb is on that, you might want to try making your single note playing sound more like that. Good drum track, a few minor errors (guitar solo section) i heard but they sounded well recorded...again i would experiment with ambience and maybe rolling off some high end of the kit in general for a retro sound. Though i guess bond music isnt all retro-they did have duran duran and bands like that, so i may be on a wrong track completely. I like the vocal track and the melody-a few times i thought the vocals were masked a bit, a mass consumption bond type song would never have masked vocals. I like the backup vocals i might try to utilize either a backup vocal or some other sound during the solo singing sections to bolster things a bit. Cool tune and if not for the bond ideas in my head i would have just said-good song, nice guitar and drum sounds with a good vocal and melody. So there i said it.
 

TripleM

Well-known member
Robus - thank you for the second listen. I think the lyrics might be a bit tough to hear in the first verse because the crunch guitars are on both sides. I may lower the gutiars in the first verse. I think it gets easier in the second and third verses because the guitar on the right side isn't as thick. I will often pick a key that pushes my range. I don't think I pick the key so that my range is pushed, I pick the key that I think sounds the best. Maybe those two are the same things. I don't know. But my intention is finding the sound I think is best, not to push my range.

spantini - I think you're right on the vocals. Thanks.

Strato - I think you've probably come closest to getting what I'm trying to do - blend old style recording sounds (e.g., heavy reverb, secret-agent-man-riff, reduced top end) with more modern sounds.
 
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