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"I do track in real-time with the sound of the plugins, just so I can get the effect. And I'll usually have the drums and everything going as well." - Jacob Martin

In this episode

  • Everything about Heavy Guitars

  • Playing techniques

  • Pickups

  • Guitar bodies and brands

  • Drop tuning

  • Amp heads

  • Cabinets

  • Amp simulation units, eg Kemper, Axe-FX, Sansamp...

  • Amp simulation plugins

  • Jacob's Tracking techniques

Links from this episode

...

About the 

guest

Jacob Martin is an influential metal guitar player. He films himself playing guitar for his YouTube channel. Jabob has gained significant industry recognition and tens of thousands of subscribers.

Tags

The Production Talk Podcast - The modern way of producing music

                                   

                                         

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Jan 'Yarn' Muths or mixartist.com.au, in the studio

Contact the podcast host Jan 'Yarn' Muths at mixartist.com.au

Disclaimer: The Production Talk Podcast is independent of (and not related to) my teaching responsibilities at SAE.

transcript

Transcript

(auto-generated by a robot - please forgive the occasional error)

Jan 'Yarn' Muths: [00:00:00] Happy new year, first and foremost to you. Jacob Martin: to you. mate. Yeah. Happy new year. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: I don't think I've seen you in how many years? Six years Jacob Martin: I would S Jan 'Yarn' Muths: five to six years. Jacob Martin: I was going to say the better part of half a decade, I think. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Yeah. About Jacob Martin: 2017 . I blinked and now it's 2022. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Yeah, time flies. Doesn't Jacob Martin: it? does. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: It really does. Um, look, you've become a bit of a specialist when it comes down to heavy guitars, you know, back in those days, when we worked together, you were already, you know, way above most other people when it came to playing and also producing guitars. And now you've got your YouTube channel going and that's really pumping and you know, the stuff you put out there is phenomenal. Jacob Martin: Thanks, mate. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: I think it's fair to say that you were a bit of a specialist when it comes to heavy guitars. Jacob Martin: I do enjoy it. Um, it's obviously where I've focused all of my energy. Um, I think as of late, I have probably been focusing a little bit more on, you know, diversifying a little bit and I think implementing [00:01:00] other techniques is directly applicable to metal as well. Like for example, I've been working on my finger picking technique on acoustic and that's kind of translated in the heavy style in that, you know, I can now use my other fingers for what's called hybrid picking and stuff. Yeah. Doing like certain licks and whatnot. So, but yes, I have focused pretty much all of my sort of guitar playing journey, sort of on the heavier side of things, for sure. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Excellent. And who are your personal heroes? You know, which, which are the bands that you look up to, your influences? Jacob Martin: Currently I would say a band called Periphery would be like my sort of top band. Um, there's another Australian band called Polaris is sort of my go-to, um, general influences over time. Like it was always, you know, Pantera, Metallica when I was first learning to play guitar and stuff like that. I mean, like Dimebag, for example, from Pantera, I thought had such a unique, like. Um, Yeah. just such a unique sound sort of thing. It was his own character kind of thing. And the playing, even to this day, you can just tell it's his [00:02:00] guitar tone, like Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Yes. There's nobody like him. Jacob Martin: Yeah, for sure. So, um, plus my brothers, well, my older brother, um, sort of got me into heavy music and that was always my main influence as well. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Okay. So, in your opinion, you know, um, when it comes to good sound for heavy guitars, how much is coming from, from the playing technique and how much is coming from the gear? What's your take on that?. Jacob Martin: Um, look, a lot of it does come from the playing technique, especially with muting the other strings. That's the big thing because obviously such heavily distorted guitars, like it's noisy, it's easy for it to sound very messy. So you do have to implement a little bit of right-hand control, like interest muting, whatever string isn't being played. Um, gear is obviously very important as well. We do live. Yeah, we are quite lucky these days with all the tools that we have at our disposal, like as far as digital plugins and stuff are concerned, actually do sound very good for a very affordable price point. Um, and [00:03:00] you know, I was always sort of against amp sims as such, but these days that they sound great. So yeah. Look gear is, is definitely important. Um, but I think. As I said before, control of the picking and minimizing as much string noise as you can is, is probably outside the most paramount as far as importance goes. Like if I, if I give my guitar to someone who doesn't play metal running for the exact same rig, you know, it can sound pretty awful. So if you're Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Yeah, Jacob Martin: not controlling your picking correctly, it's, you know, it's sort of everything from. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: so you're recommending like a precise, clean playing technique. Jacob Martin: For sure. Work on the technique first a hundred percent. But as I said, like, yeah, pickups and everything, it's definitely important, but no Jan 'Yarn' Muths: That's sort of like the opposite of what the general public would expect from Metal guitars. You know, a lot of people just think, it sounds like, you know, a couple of buckets throwing down the stairs, but it's exactly the opposite. Isn't it? In many ways, you know, it's a very precise playing technique. Jacob Martin: I think so. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Hmm. Okay. [00:04:00] Okay, good. Fantastic. So, and then of course it comes down, you know, not only to the playing technique, but of course not to the choice of instrument. And when it comes to a metal guitars, there's a wide range and a lot of people have their own unique preferences. What are your favorites? What do you like? You know, what do you play? Jacob Martin: As far as like brands, you mean? Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Yeah. Yeah. Tell us about your guitar. Jacob Martin: Like Jackson at the moment is my go-to. They're just super comfortable, you know, the neck, the last thing you want is an overly thick neck sort of thing. So I do like if I'm switching between heavy rhythms or, you know, more shred style sort of leads, it is nice just having, um, obviously a good neck size and everything like that. I do often go for like a maple sort of neck rather than like a glossy kind of one, um, just for easier movement across the fret board, I guess. Um, but yeah, Jackson, I do have a solar guitar. That's my seven-string, I've got an Ibanez, which I really love. Those sort of [00:05:00] brands. Um, I'm pretty much my go tos. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Yep. ESP is, are they Jacob Martin: Oh, ESP. Yeah. Yep. Yep. I do love ESP. Yep. Very comfortable guitars. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Okay. Cool. And, and, you know, then of course there comes the combination between the guitar and the amp, um, which is, I guess, a bit of a science by itself. What is your take on this? What are the golden combinations? The, the Jacob Martin: what I've. Yeah. What I've found over these years is the importance of, of cabinets actually. Like I never really sort of placed much attention to it. It was all about nah, it's gotta be the perfect head sort of thing. But if it's not paired with the right cab, Really just altered the tone in a less than ideal way. So what's cool about these impulse response libraries that we have at our disposal now, just conveniently downloading onto our computers is I can just switch between whatever cab, between whatever microphone and placement and et cetera, et cetera, to get the exact timbre that's going to suit the mix kind of thing. So it cabinets a big one for sure. Um, I mean always [00:06:00] sort of go for like a, a 5150 style sort of amp. I mean, it's just, it's tried and true in that metal core sort of format. And then I'll just often swap out between cabs, just with what sort of tone suits best. I think, I think I'm pretty sure it was you who really drummed into us that capturing the tone at the source, rather than sort of trying to polish a turd, so to speak, like really just making sure that the tone at the source is as close to the final product as you can kind of get it. And then you just tweaking. It's just the fun stuff from there. Just making these little subtle enhancements, because again, what I've found through experience is that metal guitars just do not take well to processing or excessive processing. And like once you start overly EQing them poking too many holes and it starts to sound a little bit weird. It's a fine line for sure. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Hmm. Okay. Okay. So in your own words, it's, it's actually the cabinets more than the head that, that makes the sound. Jacob Martin: Dare I say yes, like obviously the head's important, but [00:07:00] to me, it's you, you set up your basic, you don't go crazy, like really just bass, mids and treble. You just kind of just roughly set them to where it doesn't sound terrible. Uh don't overcrank the gain. That's another misconception with heavy, heavily distorted guitars is let's maximize that gain, but actually it's the opposite. Um, and this is when having a good, a good set of pickups really helps as well. You can have low again from all sorts of dynamics in your playing, um, and a bit more sort of, I guess, yeah, just to clear a sort of picture of the actual guitar tone. And then when you do pick harder, you can still get that really nice sort of chunky kind of tone. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: All right. So you're saying that the pickups actually have an effect on how the amp reacts to the guitar. Jacob Martin: a hundred percent. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: So, do you go for passive or active pickups? What's your take Jacob Martin: I do go for passive. Yeah. I don't mind active, but to be honest, I've just found a much better result personally, through using passive pickups, like anything, Seymour Duncan, um, bare nuckle, uh, my go-to [00:08:00] is as well. And it's a really, really cool way to, I wouldn't say transformed, but really drastically changed the tone of a guitar just by swapping out the pickups. That's really cool. You can explore so many different tones in just one guitar, which is great.. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Hm. Okay. Jacob Martin: bit tedious to change over. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: And then the volume of the pickup has an effect on how the amp gain reacts? Jacob Martin: Yeah, I do. I mean, I always, I always keep the volume at full, but what I mean, like for example, my bare nuckle juggernaut pickups. Like when I've just got the gain at a lower volume. I can kind of get better clarity between the nuances of, of the notes and stuff. But when you do just want to pick really hard and aggressively, you kind of get the benefit of the amp reacting to that. And when it's Doubletrack to get this really nice effect of this heavy just chunk and, and when the bass is sitting in this little pocket, down the low end, and you've got the guitars grinding away on the drums, like it's. Yeah, it's cool. I love it. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Okay. Well, that's super, super interesting because it basically goes back to [00:09:00] the concept of gain staging. And in some ways you literally gain stage the sound between your guitar and the input of the amp already Jacob Martin: Pretty well. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: And you use it to your advantage, to where it's, where it's best at it. Do I see that ride? Jacob Martin: Yeah. Pretty well. Like, as I said, it's not so much gain staging wherein it's positioning the volume pot on the guitar itself. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Yup. Jacob Martin: it is more so, yeah, I mean, on the amp itself, setting the game so that it's not too high and just overly distorted for the sake of it. Um, so yeah, it can be a finicky process for like, as you said, for people who just assume it's just noise kind of things. A lot of effort that goes into it. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Okay. And if we go back to amp heads for a moment, you know, there are so many phenomenal brands out these days. Have you got any favorites? Are you a Mesa Boogie person or Soldano or what is it you prefer, personally? Jacob Martin: Uh, all of the above, uh, great. I really like PRS icon I actually did on one of those [00:10:00] briefly. And I thought just straight off the bat, that sounded great. And I do miss playing real amps like the past few years, you know, just in the interest of saving space, keeping noise down and everything. I've just been using all software stuff. Um, I did have a fractal Axe effects, so just like a little floorboard style, um, amp sim, and lately I've just been using just plugins, um, just by neural DSP. So all of their archetype range, they just sound great really in it's minimal effort to get them to sound good in a mix. I like a little bit spoiled in a way, because having a bit of studio experience and actually miking up, um, an amp and everything like that, it is super challenging to get that really like professional kind of commercial sound with heavy guitars. Um, but yeah, PRS icon That's that was another head that I really enjoyed. Um, 5150, that sort of stuff. Yeah. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Yes. That's about to say, you know, people still into Marshalls these days?. Jacob Martin: Yeah, they are actually I've. I thought [00:11:00] it was more of an old school sort of eighties thing myself, but a lot of bands, actually the band I mentioned before Polaris, they use. Oh, I think it's free. It's a Freedman HBA, which is like modeled after a Marshall or something. So it has that real sort of how to explain it, like a throaty kind of mid-range kind of thing. Um, once you've timed the high end and everything like that. So Yeah, people still use marshals in metal for sure. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Okay. Well, cool. We're so spoiled for choices these days, you know, there's so much phenomenal gear out there. Um, let's just stick with this, so you just mentioned that you've basically stopped using real amps and cabinets and that you're now in-the-box or entirely using plugins. Yes. Jacob Martin: Okay. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: There's also a method in between to use external boxes, such as, you know, the Kemper or Axe FX or the Sanse Amp. very popular for many years. What is, what is your take on those? Jacob Martin: So, I mean, they're all great. Like the main reason I sold [00:12:00] my Axe-FX is because like these plugins that you get for 150, 200 bucks, they just sounds so good. And I had this essentially a glorified two and a half thousand dollars tuna just sort of sitting on my floor and the main reason I've got it was in the hope of eventually starting to gig and everything like that. I could have all of my presets saved in that. And I think it does have MIDI controls. So you can control it for like patch changes and stuff within your song. But that kind of side of my music journey didn't really pan out, like starting the band, doing the tours and shows and stuff. Didn't really go the way that we had planned and then COVID and everything. It was sort of like, That's kind of what, that's what got me thinking, like maybe I'll push the YouTube thing more because I've been doing YouTube for a while, but just strictly covers. And the, the idea of sort of putting my own original work out there was fairly daunting, but I'm sort of breaking out of that now and Yeah. Seeing some rewards out of it, which is nice. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Fantastic. Yeah. Well, I know your YouTube channel is buzzing and the videos you put [00:13:00] out there, you know, you're playing just speaks for itself. What really got me scratching my head is that, you know, YouTube can be a very nasty place where, you know, I find that on YouTube and sometimes Facebook people are very harsh with one another. And, most of the most amazing videos on YouTube get, you know, a lot of positive flags, but always negatives, but you barely ever get any negative, thumbs down. It's all thumbs up. Literally, all of it. At least the ones I saw, you know, have you ever had any backlash as well or? Jacob Martin: What I've noticed with the rage being a bit more increased as of late, Um, is that you do get some people who just. Yeah, you do get some sort of nasty comment, wouldn't say nasty, but just people just like that make you think, like, why did you write that? What was the point of writing that? But it's also easy to focus on that one bad comment in a sea of 500, really nice comments. And it's just, it seems silly to let something like that just ruin your day. So, Jan 'Yarn' Muths: That's so true. Jacob Martin: I, guess, yeah. [00:14:00] Like you just have to sort of take the bad with the good really like me and my brother because working on this together sort of thing. And he's always said like once, once he stock any more views, you know, just be prepared for those sorts of comments, just thicken up your skin as much as he can. so I thought, yeah, true. And sure enough, once, you know, our first video that got into the six figures, which is like crazy territory for me, sort of thing. Like when you look at the videos that usually get three to 4,000 views, 5,000 views, which I was stoked about all of a sudden, just jumping up to a hundred thousands. It's like, holy moly. But then with that, Yeah, you do get some different sort of comments or it's just like, oh, okay. I wasn't getting those sort of comments before. Like they're far and few between, and I'm stoked on the response. Like, um, for the most part. Yeah, you do get those sorts of comments, but I guess it just comes with the territory. Like you said, people would just Facebook, YouTube, they just have these nameless kind of harsh comments to say again. That's their problem. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Well, look, ignore those people. Keep a great work up. You're doing something phenomenal out there and, uh, you know, I love your playing. [00:15:00] It's just a pleasure to watch and to listen, of course. Uh, but let's go back to the subject of heavy guitars . Drop tuning, seven strings. Do we need to venture out into the bass guitar's range? What's your take on that? Jacob Martin: It gets a little bit silly, um seven strings. I mean, it's all down to taste at the end of the day. Seven strings is where I draw the one. I usually don't go any lower than a G sharp sort of tuning, I think. And Yeah, anything lower than that, then you sort of you're venturing into the bass guitar territory. Um, some bands do it really well, but you know, once you start delving more into eight strings and nine strings, it's just, it seems funny that you have all these strings and the people are just playing just the lowest string. Just for the sake of the heaviness kind of thing, but I don't know to each their own, I suppose, but I always just struggled to get a good guitar tone, like, I feel like just that certain element of clarity is lost once you start tuning down too low. I think it's that's the bass guitarist's job. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Hmm. Okay. Do you think there is a relation between the [00:16:00] drop tuning and heaviness of the guitar sound and the tempo of the song? Is it more suitable, for example, to play the low strings for, you know, let's say mid or slow tempo rather than, you know, something 16th at 180 or so, Jacob Martin: Yeah, Jan 'Yarn' Muths: something fast. Jacob Martin: Yeah, I would say generally, if I'm going to tune to a lower tuning, those are usually the songs that have like a slower BPM and you go for more, either like a vibey kind of heavy sound where it's really ambient. Maybe you've got laid in synths or whatever it is. But you wouldn't want the guitar playing to be too fast. Um, because it, it can just become a bit of a muddy mess, unless you're just an absolute master at mixing, but it's, you don't want to sort of have to be putting too much processing into the guitars kind of thing. So, yeah, I would say like the low tuning doesn't necessarily correlate with heavier, but like if you're going to tune low, I would say slower tempos is probably the better choice, at least from my experience. [00:17:00] Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Okay. It makes perfect sense to me. I always found that there was a certain relation between the amount of bass and the tempo of the song. So the slower it is, the more bass you can risk in a song and faster it gets the tighter the bass needs to get. Jacob Martin: spot Jan 'Yarn' Muths: gets muddy. Jacob Martin: exactly. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Say, you probably have to deal with latency all the time. So how does it actually work when you, when you track something, do you just record the DI signal by itself and then throw the plugin on later? Or do you actually listen through the plugin? Do you record the plugin sound or is it just sitting there and, uh, do you actually recall the dry sound and you just hear it affected? What's your workflow there? Jacob Martin: I do listen to the plugin as I play. So I guess that, that does have its shortfall. So going back to when we were talking about the Axe-FX and stuff like that, the beauty of that was I could play around with a multitude of different sort of tracks within pro tools and not have to worry about excessive latency. [00:18:00] Now I've got all of this extra processing that my PC is doing because I'm running the plugins in real time. That that is the downside, of course. So my computer. It is good. It handles it just fine. I can usually do. I would probably say up to probably like six layers before. It's kind of like, all right, I'm going to have to start deactivating some other tracks and just, or, or committing them. So bouncing them out to so I can at least hear the tone and my computer isn't working it's butt off sort of thing. Um, but Yeah. I do track in real time with the sound of the plugins, just so I can get the effect kind of thing. And I'll usually have the drums and everything going as well. do you use just MIDI drums for the, for the moment just to program all of my ideas out and then get my brother James to, um, yeah. Actually drum it out. So you've got the feel of a real drummer. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Yeah. Nice. So in other words, the plugins, the amps simulation plugins sit in Pro Tools, you track through them and therefore you record the actual [00:19:00] unaffected signal. So in other words, if you want it to change a parameter, you know, the gain, or let's say the presence later, you could always do that, Jacob Martin: That's exactly right. Yep. So if you take that plugin off, then it's just a DI signal. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Yeah. Yeah, exactly. Got it. And therefore you have to run your Pro Tools rig, I guess, at a, at a low buffer size ? Jacob Martin: Yeah. Usually around 256 seems to be Jan 'Yarn' Muths: all year you're right. Jacob Martin: yeah, it's a quite low. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: That's um, rather high, I thought, you know, isn't this in a range where you can sort of hear the latency already?. Jacob Martin: Um, not really. I thought the same on my old PC, I had it at 64 Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Hmm. Yep. Jacob Martin: Um, but if I started introducing too many plugins, it obviously would introduce some like crackling and everything like that. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: That's the balancing act? Jacob Martin: Yeah. Um, you could be right. Maybe there is some slight latency, but I haven't really noticed it, but, um, what's the one above 64, 1 Jan 'Yarn' Muths: 1 28. Yeah. Yeah. Jacob Martin: I'd say probably 128. It's probably more ideal, but I've been mucking [00:20:00] around in 256 so I can run more plugins and it seems to be okay, but Jan 'Yarn' Muths: And Jacob Martin: maybe not, maybe everything's at a time. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: and then you run your Pro Tools rig at a lower buffer size, you know, that's, we're just mentioning Pro Tools, but there will be the same with any other DAW, wouldn't it? And you'd just keep the buffer size low and that means you can't run too many instances of the guitar amp simulators, and that you overcome this by then committing the tracks so that you can free up performance for the next, uh, signal. Is that right? Jacob Martin: Yeah. If it's a particularly busy song where I'm playing with different layers, it is lead guitars, clean guitars, all that sort of stuff, the clean guitars, as far as processing goes is a super hungry, you know, if you've got delays and stuff, other effects. Um, so Yeah. I will usually, Um, even does bounce them out. So I'm not committing per se, but at least just got like the crux of the time that's there that I can just use as a template sort of thing. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Okay. Jacob Martin: just to save some processing power, Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Yeah. Yeah. That makes sense. Most DAWs have something like a [00:21:00] freeze feature. Exactly for that purpose that should come in really handy. Cool. Look, you know, um, it doesn't really matter how you do it, but you found a good, good workflow that works for you and you know, that's the only thing that counts. That's, that's pretty cool. Jacob Martin: yeah. There's no sort of right or wrong answers, really. Like, even as far as tone goes, it's whatever works for you. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: yeah. Nice. Nice. That's great. Say, since you go, D I enter your audio interface, I guess. Um, do you use any pebbles? Jacob Martin: I used to use a max on ODI 8 0 8 and I never had the drive actually boosted. It was more just for. A bit more aggression, sort of in the top end, without it Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Um, Jacob Martin: too much. And it did seem to sort of tighten up the low end somehow. And it was like a little. Hack that guitarists were using. It was like the industry standard. You just, you run that little green pedal before anything and it just major tone. Awesome. I use that for years, but what they've done now is they've emulated it in these [00:22:00] plugins. So you've actually got the RD pedal just there just before it actually hits the amp. So I've just been using that. I do love pedals and I would love. You know, a sick, fully decked out sort of pedal board, but, um, I don't at the moment, but saving up some money. So I'll eventually stopped buying some pedals because some at that do sound super cool from what I've heard. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Yeah. Right. But the thing with pedals is you always track through them. So whatever you do there is tracked. And, you know, if you made a mistake in setting your pedals, well, then, you know, it's baked into the file. Jacob Martin: that is true. Yep. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Okay. And you know, with paddles also comes a buzz and noise and harm and all the things you usually don't want. What's your suggestion on managing that? If you know, some people love their pedals, how do you keep that at bay? Jacob Martin: that's actually been something I've been trying to work out for the longest time, because I have noticed when I was running through my ax effects, I didn't really have a problem with noise. [00:23:00] Um, I don't know if it's because of. Outputs it's at putting with like a balanced cable, like the XLR cable going to interface. I don't know, but what, even what I've noticed plugging directly into my focus, right? There's like more noise than I would like that seems to be present, like even now. So that's Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Mm. Jacob Martin: still something I'm battling with. I don't know if it's like a granting issue in my house. I need to do some troubleshooting. So noise is just forever. One of those things. Not good in metal, especially once you've, once you starting to distort your guitars, it can really affect everything. So that's still something I'm trying to work out for sure. I don't know if DIY boxes, that's what I wanted to test to actually, it was like a radio sort of day or box to save that maybe got rid of the noise possibly, but I don't know. What's your take on that? As far as noise goes. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Uh, look, um, I don't think I've found the right cure that always works. It's like a void with things sometimes that defies logic. Um, sometimes it just [00:24:00] occurs in the most inconvenient times and places and sometimes without any logical explanation. So really it comes down to experimenting and see, see what happens, you know, try different cables, try shorter cables. Try, as you just mentioned, you know, try different the eyeball. Um, you know, things like this and maybe take it to another room. Sometimes it might be, I dunno, a light switch or something, or the proximity to a refrigerator or what have you that can, Jacob Martin: So many variables for sure. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Yeah. Yeah. It's sometimes really hard to say and guitar sickness are unbalanced and therefore they are more sensitive to interference. Jacob Martin: Yeah. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: So it's, it's not a bad idea to actually get yourself an external, the iBox and therefore shorter guitar lead. So maybe that's, that's definitely worth something checking and see what happens. Yeah, you, you will not regret getting a radial. The iBox, Jacob Martin: I know, Jan 'Yarn' Muths: And they will last you 10 years easily, if not longer. Yeah. They're really [00:25:00] good Jacob Martin: I do remember using them back in the studio days and I thought, nah, that's, I've got to buy one of those and only just now, am I thinking that I've really got to buy one? Jan 'Yarn' Muths: yeah, yeah. Right. All right. Cool. Say M have you ever found yourself in a situation where you recorded the icicle and then reamp later Jacob Martin: Uh, actually yes, at SIA, that's where I first learned about ramping. I haven't done it too much outside of that, but, um, definitely a super cool tool. And again, that's where the R box has become super handy, where you can split your time. You don't necessarily have to commit to what you've recorded. You can play around with different amps after the fact, um, which. It's not something I've done recently, but it is something I've done in the past. So not just super cool, sort of flexible technique. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Yep. Cool. Um, one thing I've done in the past is to just, you know, record, uh, distorted guitars, why microphones through an amp. Um, but also the I [00:26:00] split and not necessarily as, as a backup or, you know, to, to change it later, but I just really enjoyed having a visual. Jacob Martin: Um, Jan 'Yarn' Muths: know, to start to distort it Kotasek and all you see is a big block while it's really difficult to identify notes. And if you also record the DI you actually get clear visible transients. So when it comes down to editing, I found that was super helpful. That was the only reason why I had it in my approach session desk to make it easy to edit there when never even sounding. But that, yeah, well, Jacob Martin: That's actually a really good point. Yeah. Just that, because I mean, obviously all of this is. Audio it's auditory, but it is handy to seeing things visually, especially like transits and stuff. So, Yeah. that's actually a really cool technique. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Especially if editing is necessary. Jacob Martin: Yeah. Big time. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Good. Say M for a really heavy rhythm guitar sound. How much double tracking would you recommend? Jacob Martin: um, I wouldn't go as far as quad tracking. I mean, it, it depends. Um, I [00:27:00] usually do to stick to a straight sort of left and right. Pant guitar and then. Lightly distorted bass as well. I mean, filtering the guitars as well. So high pass, low cut, or sorry, high pass, low pass. Um, and obviously there are mid-range instruments. So just focusing on that for the aggression there, the base fulfills the low end and everything like that. Um, yeah, I've lost my train of thought there. I was going to a bit of a tangent, Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Yeah. Right. Uh, I've I've heard from, you know, some rhythm guitar players who tracked, you know, 24 rhythm guitars for their sound. Um, but, but you say just, you know, one left one, right. Is what you read, what a reading needs. Jacob Martin: Plenty plenty quad tracking is definitely good. Um, you've just got to use a little bit more technique. You can't have four of the same tone, obviously. Um, what I heard of a band called architects do in one of their songs, they actually had, they've taken the signal after the amp, so that like horribly distorted sort of time before it hits any [00:28:00] cabinet and actually blended that. With the already recorded guitar tone and just had it really quiet in the mix, but it was his main passage where it was this like Ramstein esque, sort of chugging kind of section, um, this real industrial kind of heavy sort of feel to it and the guitars. I never noticed it until the guitarist mentioned that was the technique they implemented, but they actually had, I think it was quad tract that they had a standard left and run record recorded guitar. The ton of the guitar before hit any cabinets. So this really sort of harsh abrasive top end, but just turned down in the mix. And when you've got them blended together, it had this really cool effect on the turn, like just added extra, um, like just top end sort of grit to it. Yeah, Was really Cool. And, but subtle, like, you didn't notice it, you just know, oh, that tone stands Olsen, but when they stopped dissecting it, you're like, oh, that's why it sounds awesome. Like it, yeah. So that's interesting. It's not something I've played around with too much, but actually. With that in mind, I have been wanting to sort of implement that a little bit more. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: So that's basically [00:29:00] a blend out of the many individual sickness that made the whole yeah. Cool, cool. And sometimes it takes, you know, a very trained ear to actually take it apart. Jacob Martin: It really does. Yeah. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: I'm I'm sure lots of people wouldn't pick these details. You know, it takes somebody like a self probie to identify those things. Jacob Martin: And yourself as well. Like not something that average listener would, would pick up on, but with us, when we're listening to music, we're always critical. Critically Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Yeah. That's right now where the normal business see a big picture. We usually see the puzzle pieces. Stoneway Jacob Martin: Yeah, exactly. It's it's I remember Johan saying years ago that it's, it's kind of ruined music for. Critical listening sort of thing where you're always dissecting and analyzing and oh, why does that kick drum sound so good and this and that rather than just sitting down and just enjoying it, but Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Yes. Yes. I can still relate to that. I've gone through phases in my life, and I've definitely been down that path of over analyzing everything as a young engineer where I just couldn't enjoy the whole thing anymore, but it comes back. [00:30:00] It comes back and nowadays, you know, I'm, uh, In the comfortable position that I can literally consciously switch this on and off and deliberately say, okay, right now, I'm just going to put my feet up and enjoy music for what it is Jacob Martin: yeah, Jan 'Yarn' Muths: not see the puzzle pieces in the same spot. Now the big picture, and that's a blissful state. That's Jacob Martin: Yeah, I can imagine. I need to get back to that actually. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Yeah, look, you get there. Everybody can get back there. You know, it's just, it's in us, it's in us already. You know, it was there in the Jacob Martin: It was that. Yeah, Jan 'Yarn' Muths: It was in the first place, you know, just to think about how you listened to music as a kid, Jacob Martin: Um, Jan 'Yarn' Muths: just jumped around and probably bounce around because the, you felt the energy and that's still there. Jacob Martin: yeah, totally. Yeah. True. Well, that's good Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Um, So, let me get it back to, to, um, diaper tracking. So is it fair to say that for heavy songs, there should be at least two real rhythm guitars. Can you, can you get [00:31:00] away with one instead of have to, Jacob Martin: yeah. honestly, I don't think so. Like, I think it'd be really noticeable and this, unless you were using it as an effect where it was a particular buildup moment, you might just have a single, excuse me, a single mono guitar just in the center. And then for effect, when it drops in, then you've got those big wide sort of guitars. So typically. It's just, it's always the two rhythm guitars, I would say, just as like a standard for sure. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Hm. Okay. I fully agree with that. It's particularly difficult to try to create a wide stereo sound. If you have only one rhythm guitar to work with, you know, and just double tracking it. And I mean, literally tracking it twice, not just copying it across makes all the difference. Jacob Martin: Yep. Exactly. Like, like you just said that it's not simply a matter of playing at once and then copying and pasting it. Cause That's just two mono signals. It's, there's something about the, the slight differences in the playing between the left and the right guitar. [00:32:00] Um, even if one ever so slightly veers, just the slightest bit out of time, it creates this really cool sort of wide widening effect on the Jan 'Yarn' Muths: so true. Jacob Martin: Yeah, Jan 'Yarn' Muths: And I love that effect. And, and I have not found any way to do that in post in any way. Jacob Martin: It's not the same. Is it? Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Yeah. Actually a found, found a solution once when a client gave me a mixed with only a song to mix with only one rhythm guitar and it was pulling my hair out, trying to get some stereo. And eventually I figured that, um, luckily they played each part twice in this. So I basically made an empty channel underneath and found the second chorus and copied them on the other channel where the first course was and vice versa and P re puzzled the entire Jacob Martin: Yeah, that Jan 'Yarn' Muths: different places. And it made, it made the same effect, but Jacob Martin: that Jan 'Yarn' Muths: I pulled my hair out there for a while. And, um, you don't always get [00:33:00] as lucky, you know, um, what it takes is just a certain note that it's only ever played once. And. Jacob Martin: Yeah. True. True. Yep. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: I got a bit lucky there, but, uh, yeah, look, Jacob Martin: why my to do it. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: I think that's right down on that's right on the money, you know, and I, when it comes to really have to have your rhythm guitars and you've got to have two, at least. And if you keep going, if you want to layer up more, would it makes sense to change in all the guitars or the amps or combined darker and brighter Jacob Martin: Oh yeah. A hundred percent. Yep. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Yeah. Rather than just doing the same thing 20 times, it makes sense to Jacob Martin: yeah. Correct. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: different Sonic colors. Jacob Martin: I've even heard of people slightly different times between left to run like it, uh, using different guitars for just a slightly different effect from the pickups, or even going as far as changing cabs between lift and run sort of thing. If you talk in digital, Um, those little subtle differences, as long as it's obviously not a night and day difference where it's just disorienting, um, for the listener, but [00:34:00] yeah. To kind of increase that effect. I guess reduced fatigue on the ear as well. For long periods of listening. It is kind of cool to have a couple of slightly different tones between left and right. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Cool. Um, okay. So, and then, you know, that comes lead guitars on tops. So, um, should you lay down the rhythm guitars underneath or should you have a break with a leaked. Place so that you can reproduce it the same way life. I think you mentioned Pantera earlier. They've done that on some of their records where when dime played bleed, there was literally no rhythm guitar underneath Jacob Martin: It was just based yet. It was just Jan 'Yarn' Muths: drum space and lead guitar, then no other rhythm guitar. What is your take on that? Jacob Martin: Personally, if I were to do say like, if it was just me a basis and then my brother on drums and then. I wouldn't be writing these crazy big sections that? was so dependent on 50 of the layers being there for it to sound like what it actually should be. And then when you play [00:35:00] it live, all of a sudden, it's just this underwhelming like, oh, something's missing. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Um, Jacob Martin: I mean, I've gone and seen bands live where that's a thing where they have these great big productions and stuff in the studio. And then when you see it live, it just, it sounds a little bit empty because there's like 50 harmonies missing. Um, But then riding laid guitar to an actual rhythm guitar is like super fun. So I don't know, but I think even still just a lead guitar and a bass guitar together to sound super cool. Like obviously that was pan terrorist thing. Like Dom did that super well. Um, but also going back to the other band periphery, they don't actually currently have a bassist, um, So when they go out on tour, they've got the base there, but it's just, it must be playing through a door or some description, um, because it's definitely base in the mixes when you see them live, but there is no basis. So Jan 'Yarn' Muths: So it comes, comes from the playback. In other words, the entire band needs to be on a click. Jacob Martin: that's exactly right. So metal can be a little bit surgical like that, where it is. You've got your [00:36:00] in-ears and it's just played to a click. Um, and this is when I guess the benefit of that you can have, if you've got some, maybe orchestral sort of stuff or sense or whatever, you can still have that, um, in the actual front of house mix, if you're playing to a playback. So I guess That's. the other side of it. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: But the downside is that if you just feel it and you want to play it a bit faster, or, you know, the audience is pumping and you just want to double the chorus on the, on the, and the end of the song you can't. Now you're basically locked into a time code. You know, some people call this a timecode live sound production, where everything is planned out to the millisecond. Um, it's got pros and cons. Jacob Martin: Yeah, for Jan 'Yarn' Muths: and cons. Jacob Martin: I would like that, that freedom, like you said, like varying tempos or whatever, and. Do it, sometimes I play this well, actually they often play their songs way faster live. Um, so they're obviously not, I guess, on a click track or whatever that is, that is feeling it. And just go with the crab, which you know, [00:37:00] would be cool as Well, Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Yeah. Yeah. Um, just recently I worked with, uh, a local band, an up and coming, you know, really, really amazing band. Uh, I actually had, uh, Andy on the podcast earlier. Um, he's the singer and guitar player of pineapple laser. Jacob Martin: Okay. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: During the process of mixing the album, they added layers and layers and more synthesizers and extra layers. And after we finished the mix, he asked me for stems of those. Um, and then he re sampled the spec into their synthesizer and so that they could reproduce it life. So that became a, a rougher drop for, for IO, the keyboard player she had more to do because of the. Basically, what we had in the studio were then reproduced life and make it made it harder for them, but they pulled it off really well. Jacob Martin: That's cool. Yeah. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: So yeah, I just saw a video just the other day of a live show and, you know, These guys are crazy. Jacob Martin: That's unreal. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: I can't [00:38:00] wait to actually see them in person, you Jacob Martin: Yeah. Heck yeah. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: let's, let's, let's talk about, yeah, let's talk about live music, you know, um, the consensus is sort of that it seems to be coming back, but you know, COVID numbers always, you know, you never know what's happening, but I see a certain optimism in the livestock industry lately, and I've seen gigs coming back. What is. What is your prediction? If you had to look into the crystal ball, what is 2022 going to bring? Jacob Martin: so many of, um, these events and gigs that I've been seeing, coming up have been canceled. And I almost bought tickets to one somewhat sort of reluctantly because I thought just in case it gets canceled anyways, I ended up sleeping on it and sure enough, it got postponed Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Mm. Jacob Martin: until I think it's later this year, but, um, I think there was a. Heavy music sort of festival down in Victoria somewhere, uh, not in dye festival. And that was cool to say just an absolute packed out sort of. You know, heavy bands playing their songs. finally. like some of these bands that I've been following on, on socials and stuff, as I fire these guys that has been sitting at home [00:39:00] for how many months, like, Jan 'Yarn' Muths: yeah, yeah. Jacob Martin: you feel bad for them? Like, um, so it's cool. I really hope, you know, 22 has, uh, a big comeback with live music. I certainly. Go on to say gigs and stuff like that. Like you just, you can't beat the energy of a show and, and for the inspiration factor too, like I swear after every show I come home and just immediately to sit down and to start rotting roofs, I just feel super, just pumped up and motivated. So Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Yeah. Yeah, of course. Awesome. That's great. So as a guitar player, how do you get yourself ready for life shows? You know, can you, can you work with, um, amp simulation life? What's your take on Jacob Martin: yeah. These days. Yes. But unfortunately I'm not coming from a place of experience there. I don't have too much live show experience. I'm all just a bit of a bedroom guitarist at the moment. But the general thing seems, even these plugins that we spoke about earlier, like a lot of the bands are actually using these plugins because they come as a standalone version often. So you Can still use them live and use a mini controller to switch [00:40:00] between presets and stuff like that So, Uh, he doesn't say as many bands are these, you know, crazy, great, big, big wall of amps behind them sort of thing. It's and I guess to keep their rig down for easy transportation and stuff, everything just at least in the metal world, I don't keep up on the live performances of other genres too much, but everything seems to be really digital in metal Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Yes. Um, yeah, if not, as, not as that too. So you're saying that people literally use a DIY box and an Oriental face and a laptop instead of guitar cabinet and that therefore you need, I guess, fairly powerful monitoring in order to feel it. Jacob Martin: Yeah. Which seems super daunting to me. Like what if your computer crashes, That's the only thing. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: That's the thing. Yeah, it was. So I was just about asked, you know, what about that? Can you trust a computer, you know, in a studio, if it crashes, you know, in a studio who cares? You just do another K now you're not another take, but life, you can't just tell the audience to, just to have a coffee break Jacob Martin: Yeah, exactly. We're going to take five. Yeah. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: yeah. [00:41:00] Okay. So that's another story. So maybe devices like the camphor and X effects might have a place for. Jacob Martin: A hundred percent. Yep. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: are just a bit more reliable than a computer. Yeah. Jacob Martin: think that's still the go-to like the ax effects three is out now. And I've been seeing a lot of bands using that and the X eight, which is what I owned. It's like the floor. The full pedal version of the ax effects. So you've got all the same functionality, a little bit less processing parents stuff. So you can't do, um, jewel cabs and stuff like that. But, um, yeah, you do at least get that sort of familiar. Pedalboard kind of feel and with good sounding amps as well and less chance of any sort of crashing related incidents happening. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Yeah. Yeah. Good. That makes sense. Okay. Well I think it's time to, to, uh, wrap all of it up. So thank you so much for sharing all this amazing insight. Just hypothetically speaking, you know, if one of our listeners wanted to reach out to you, let's say I hire you for a [00:42:00] studio drop. Do, do you do these things? Jacob Martin: Yeah, I'm always open to that sort of stuff. And I mean, this year I'm going to be more focused on, um, You know, I creating and putting myself out there a little bit more as far as original stuff goes, as I said, I've taken that shift from covers to originals and it seems to be doing well. So I'm going to keep doing that. Um, I've had a few people reach out for collaborations and stuff, which I'm always open to look at doing to our grandma's schedule. So yeah, definitely feel free to Rachel. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Yeah. All right. So you also have a gun for hire, so to speak Jacob Martin: Pretty well. Yeah, like I, like, as I said, it wasn't something I was doing too much in the past, but I think this year it's something I'm going to be sort of doing more. As I said to you, I think to have a dad I've been working with this vocalist over in the UK, which is cool. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: You should definitely do that. That's that's amazing. That's amazing. Really good. So what's the best way to find, you know, there's your YouTube channel and, um, if you're okay with this, I'd like to put the link in the show notes, Jacob Martin: Yeah. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: but, uh, have you got a website Jacob Martin: Not at the moment Jan 'Yarn' Muths: or something? Jacob Martin: Instagram for the best place to reach me as far as just [00:43:00] general inquiries. Um, or even on my email address, you'll see it on, on my YouTube channel that will have the, for inquiries contact. And I think the email address hyperlink should be underneath that. Um, otherwise just directly on Instagram is the way to go just to my dams. Yeah, Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Good. So if somebody needs really awesome sounding guitars, they could just hit you up and work together. Jacob Martin: absolutely. Jan 'Yarn' Muths: Fantastic. That sounds great. Well, Jacob, thank you so much for making the time today. Jacob Martin: No. Thanks Jan 'Yarn' Muths: really good to, you know, talk heavy guitars, you know, and I have a passion for having music myself. I mix a lot of heavy music. I've played in heavy bands myself when I was younger. And, uh, you know, I still love to listen to the music. So Jacob Martin: That's right now. It is good Now I appreciate you having me on always appreciate the chat mate.
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