May 1

Mix Engineer Insights Vol 2 – Mixing Rebelution “Free Rein”


Vol 2 of Mix Engineer Insights is here!

This time Rob and I would like to tell you about our recent work mixing reggae band Rebelution on their new LP “Free Rein”. This band was particularly fun for me because I’ve been a fan of theirs ever since moving to LA in 2011. I knew what they were used to hearing in their mixes so we applied a similar approach but added our vibes to it. All of the records on “Free Rein” were mixed out of Parkland Studios in Florida except one song mixed by my bredrine Don Corleone. We later flew to LA and made the final tweaks at Paramount Studios West Hollywood with the band. Really cool set of musicians!

Mixing Rebelution "Free Rein" LP
“Free Rein” LP

Single 1 “Celebrate”

“Celebrate” Video
“Celebrate” is the first single off Rebelution’s LP coming out summer of 2018. I loved the piano melody in the hook. It reminded me of an old rocksteady part so I EQed it accordingly and put it in an old Lexicon plate. I had fun with the delay throws in this song, especially at 0:46 and 0:49 on the vocals. Randomly by chance while I was automating the PCM 42 by hand towards the bridge, I luckily pitched the feedback delay down and back up again in time with the guitar solo around 3:15. It turned out really cool I think. In an effort to totally overdo it I went crazy with the outtro. I added an Air filter gate to the pick guitar and drenched it in reverb while it faded into the distance. Glad the band loved it too ‘cause it was pretty out there!

Single 2 “City Life”

“City Life” Video
Rob’s favorite song on Free Rein is “City Life” produced by Philip “Winta” James. He loved the melody in the verses. A big key to this record is the parallel compression on the drums. He used an SSL G bus compressor from Universal Audio to big up the drums. That thing smacks!!! The bongos on the vamp out used multi band compression to control a very transient dynamic range. The bubble organ has a little bit of air kill EQ to dull it out then an M/S EQ at 6k to bring back the top end around the sides. Also there’s a Puigchild 670 to reign in the control.

Single 3 “Healing”

“Healing” Video
“Healing” is an acoustic guitar and vocal mainly. There were only a few tracks in this Protools session so we had a lot of room to create reverb throws and be creative. I used Vocal Rider in automation mode to balance the vocal.

It’s always great working with Rebelution. They’re very talented and while they have established their sound and direction from a long time ago, they still allowed us to do our thing. Big Respect!


Rebelution Free Rein

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