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What Do Superheroes Have to Do With Your Mixes?

When it comes to superhero movies, the Marvel movies win hands down.

What they did with the Avengers across two decades of cinema was simply an incredible feat of strategy, storytelling, and vision.

However, the Justice League of America will always be my favorite superhero team.

Grant Morrison’s JLA run between 1997 and 2006 is one of the most incredible superhero story arcs in history (those are fighting words, and I will fight you if you decide to join me in the ring).

The run refocused the lineup on the Big Seven:

  • Superman
  • Batman
  • Wonderwoman
  • Aquaman
  • Martian Manhunter
  • Green Lantern
  • Flash

Barry Allen and Hal Jordan may be the OG Flash and GL, but the younger Wally West and Kyle Rayner in this lineup will always be my favorite. It probably has something to do with my teenage years at the time and them being more relatable than a middle-aged reporter, a paranoid billionaire, an alien, a goddess, and a king.

Morrison really fleshed out the characters and brought the title back to the glory days. But, more importantly, Morrison wrote them as a team that relied on each other.

When the big guns were incapacitated by the White Martians, it was Bruce – when you’re friends you get to call them by their first name – who used his cunning intellect to save the world.

Memorable quote: “He’s only a MAN!”

And when the Earth is threatened by renegade angels and J’onn J’onnz is at his breaking point, electric-blue Superman takes over and wrestles the angel Asmodel to a standstill.

Meanwhile, rookies Rayner and West team up to create an ultrasonic weapon to phase them out of the mortal realm, back to wherever they came from, resulting in…once again, JLA saving the day. Natch. ‘Nuff said.

Both of these storylines can be found in JLA Volume #1 – highly recommended.

But what on EARTH! does this have to do with mixing!

Simple, if you’re struggling to get a great mix going, you need a team. And that team consists of your plug-ins. They all do different things, that when combined, transform your villainous muddy mixes into peaceful professional records.

Your team consists of the Big Five:

  • EQ creates balance and separation between your instruments.
  • Compression adds tightness and punch to your mix.
  • Reverb and delay act as a little taskforce within the team, creating depth and space – adding a three-dimensional feel to your song.
  • And saturation adds some sweetening and secret sauce, creating a professional vibe and warmth that separates your mix from the amateurs.

Now, my writing pales in significance to the mastery of Morrison, but to be fair, Morrison doesn’t have a clue about mixing.

That’s where Step By Step Mixing comes in. I can only dream of being a comic book writer, but I can make your professional mixes a reality.

Here’s what Randall said about Step By Step Mixing in a review yesterday:

“I’ve been home recording for decades and have read quite a bit about the topic. This book cuts to the chase and gave me most of what I needed to know to address those issues I was hitting on most every mix, but couldn’t resolve by doing a google search. instrument separation, reducing muddiness, adding punch or thickness. Because every song is different, there’s no one-size-fit-all cookbook for mixing, but this is maybe the closest thing. Bjorgvin identifies and explains those critical EQ bands for common instruments and explains many of the tricks I had heard about and tried, but didn’t always get right. Bjorgvin is a great writer and also just a really awesome guy with a genuine desire to share his craft. After purchasing the book, and getting on his email list, I not only received other valuable articles and guides, but I was also invited to live mixing sessions. There’s nothing better than watching a pro do exactly what you’re trying to learn.”

If you want to learn how to get otherwordly mixing skills and learn how to command your plug-ins like a team of superheroes, Step By Step Mixing will teach you how.

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About me

About Audio Issues and Björgvin Benediktsson

At Audio Issues you’ll learn simple and practical audio production tips you can use right away to improve your music from your home recording studio.  Björgvin is the best-selling author of Step By Step Mixing and the founder of Audio Issues. He helps musicians and producers turn amateur demos into professionally produced records they can be proud to release.

We help home studio musicians and project studio producers make a greater musical impact in their lives by teaching them the skills needed to grow their hobbies and careers. We do this by offering simple and practical music production and success skills they can use right away to level themselves up – while rejecting negativity and gear-shaming from the industry. A rising tide floats all boats and the ocean is big enough for all of us to surf the sound waves.

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