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5 Tricks to Make Your Vocal Tracks Sound More Modern

Getting your vocal tracks to sound modern requires more than just following a set of predetermined rules or approaches. The sensitive interplay of melody, rhythm, and emotion in the human voice is a unique gift, but with dedication and the right help, the process can be positive and rewarding. 

According to popular opinion, vocalisation is a skill that can be learned. With valuable resources and guidance, aspiring vocalists can rapidly grasp the delicacy of pitch, tone, and technique, eventually elevating their ability to a professional level.

The skill to create vocal tracks that sound modern is crucial in the current music industry, where innovation and progress go hand in hand. Singing well is just one aspect of it; another is using technology and imagination to create a unique sound identity that appeals to modern listeners.

How Can I Make My Vocal Tracks Modern?

It might seem tough to start learning about the modernisation of vocal tracks, but it is not as hard as you think. To bring your creative vision to life, it is important to find your unique voice as an artist by using the tools and materials available. If you are trying out innovative effects processing, blending non-traditional vocal textures, or challenging the limits of conventional vocal expression, the point is to stay true to your artistic vision while embracing the spirit of innovation and experimentation.

Regardless of your expertise level, these suggestions and approaches can help you obtain a current vocal sound in your recordings. Let’s explore these tactics together and take your vocal recordings to the next level, creating music that speaks to today’s ever-changing musical world.

  • Multiband Compression:

Multiband compression is an effective approach for shaping the dynamic range of your vocal recordings, allowing you to modify the intensity of compression across multiple frequency bands. By splitting the frequency spectrum into different bands, you can focus on specific tone characteristics of your voice while keeping it clear and consistent throughout the recording.

Experimenting with different compression settings, such as attack, release, and ratio, allows you to find the ideal balance between keeping your performance’s natural dynamics and producing a polished, professional sound. Whether you’re seeking to add punch to the low end or reduce noise in the records, multiband compression allows you to fine-tune every component of your vocal mix with accuracy and control.

Related Article: 5 of the Best Daily Vocal Exercises for Singers

  • Addition of Plate Reverbs:

Reverb is an essential component of vocal production, providing depth, texture, and ambiance to your recordings. Plate reverbs, with their lush and smooth decay, provide a timeless feel that compliments modern voice performances perfectly.

When introducing plate reverbs into your voice mix, experiment with varied decay lengths and pre-delay settings to achieve a sense of distance and immersion. By customising the reverb parameters to your song’s mood and genre, you may increase the emotional impact of your vocals while also creating a unified soundscape that draws listeners in.

Explore parallel processing techniques, such as combining your reverb’s dry and wet signals with auxiliary sends, to modernise your vocal sound even further. This preserves the clarity and intimacy of the dry signal while adding depth and character to the reverb, resulting in a balanced and dynamic vocal mix.

Related Article: 7 Vocal Warm Ups That Work Wonders

  • Dynamic Control with Limiting:

In addition to compression, dynamic control using limitations is essential for moulding the overall impact and clarity of your vocal sounds. Using a limiter on your vocal recordings can effectively prevent transient peaks from reaching a particular threshold, resulting in a steady and balanced sound from start to finish.

When setting your limiter, pay particular attention to characteristics like threshold, release time, and lookahead, since these can all have significant effects on the transparency and effectiveness of the limiting process. Aim for moderate but effective gain reduction, allowing your vocals to break through the mix without sounding too compressed or constrained.

  • Resonance Removal:

The acoustics of your recording space can have a significant impact on the clarity and tonal balance of your vocal recordings, with unwanted resonances frequently resulting in disturbances. To overcome these concerns, take proactive actions to reduce resonance during the recording process and use remedial techniques during mixing.

Choose a recording space with minimal room modes and reflections, opting for acoustically treated environments when possible. Additionally, utilise frequency analysis tools and spectrum analyzers to identify problematic resonances within your vocal recordings, then apply surgical EQ (Equalisation) cuts or notch filtering to attenuate these frequencies and restore clarity and definition to your vocals.

  • Level Automation:

Level automation is an important part of voice production since it allows you to accurately adjust the volume levels of specific vocal phrases or sections within your song. Level automation ensures that every word is heard clearly and consistently, even when the music changes dynamically. By automating the volume levels, you may highlight key phrases, smooth out uneven performances, and create a sense of dynamic movement that improves the overall impact of your vocals.

To use level automation effectively, begin by identifying critical points in your vocal performance where volume adjustments are required. This could involve increasing the level of softer passages, decreasing the intensity of louder sections, or using minor fades to produce smooth transitions between phrases. By methodically fine-tuning the volume levels with automation, you can create a clean and professional vocal mix that keeps listeners engaged from beginning to end. Experiment with various automation curves and techniques to get the ideal combination of clarity, emotion, and impact in your vocal files.

Added Tip – Top-End Boost:

Boosting the higher frequencies in your vocal tracks can create a greater sense of airiness and brightness, elevating their presence and definition in the final mix. This technique proves particularly beneficial when working with mid-range microphones that may not capture the complexities of high-frequency sounds, enabling you to neutralise any limitations in your recording setup.

When using a top-end boost, exercise caution to prevent adding harshness or fricative sounds to your vocal mix. Lift the upper frequencies with a mild shelving EQ (Equalisation) or high-frequency shelf, aiming to improve brightness and articulation while retaining your voice’s original timbre and character.

Conclusion

Incorporating these techniques into your vocal production workflow is like adding a touch of magic to your sound. With multiband compression, plate reverbs, dynamic control, resonance removal, and top-end boosting in your arsenal, you’re poised to elevate your vocal tracks to new heights of clarity and expression.

Think of multiband compression as your secret weapon for refining the nuances of your vocal performance, while plate reverbs add that ethereal ambiance that captivates listeners.

Dynamic control ensures your vocals soar effortlessly through the mix, while resonance removal keeps your sound clean and polished.

And let’s not forget about top-end boosting, adding that final touch of sparkle and brilliance.

Approach each technique with creativity and attention to detail, for it’s the subtle nuances that define your sonic signature. Happy recording!

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