Advancing Live-Overheads With Waves’ SSL E-Channel Strip

Advancing Live-Overheads With Waves’ SSL E-Channel Strip

On November 2nd 2018 I released my debut-album „Lorenz“ celebrating my personal milestone with a concert in the Junction Bar Berlin.

After mixing, mastering and publishing the live-recordings of that evening as a live-record I got a request of showing how I achieved the powerful drum-sound.

Let’s start with the overheads in this video.

Apply EQ For Loosing Weight And Letting The Cymbals Fly

With the help of ProTools EQ3 I like to remove some high resonances that always hurt my ears or teeth…

You could also apply some slight saturation or overdrive, which does a similar thing. I like to find the exact spot of the problem and get rid of it.

This move results in a slightly darker overhead/high-hat sound, which I like, but you could compensate by adding some highs with another eq or…


Take Out Bass And Rumble That Cover Up The Overheads

The aim of treating the overhead-track is to get the cymbals and high-hat ring as clear, open and transparent as possible.

You can achieve this by removing lots of bass and stage rumble with a high-pass filter and a bit of low shelf filter. The track will feel much lighter!

Adding some high top end will lift them even more in the mix above the rest of the band.


Compression For Ducking The Snare

After improving the sound of the overhead recording we are only left with a volume issue. 

Since the overhead microphones point directly towards the drum-set from above they also capture a lot of snare, which is the loudest part of the drums.

Setting a compressor to the fastest attack will catch the transients of the snare, controlling them and we perceive more ringing cymbals by being less distracted from the loud snare hits. 

The high-hat, which is played very dynamically here by Antonio, also profits from the compressor a little bit as it gets more consistent. 

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