Dead Neanderthals – Prime

Prime, the 12th release by the band, has been recorded, mixed and mastered at the White Noise Studio. This is their second release as a trio with Colin Webster. A blog about the recording, mix and master!

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The first recording Dead Neanderthals did as a trio, “…And it Ended Badly” only used 3 tracks + microphones. This recording was a bit more involved, using 12 tracks. The amazing 40 minute track was played and improvised live, no overdubs. It took 1 take to get the final version.

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Used mics:

The sound is aimed to be in your face and very aggressive. That meant more isolated sounds and close miking needed.The Saxes both got 1 MD441, just as the toms. The snare got double miked with a MD421 on top and a sm57 on the bottom. The kick was miked with 1 sennheiser e602 in front of the drum. 2 overheads were used, Neumann KM184’s.

3 roommics have been placed and used to capture some of the overall intensity. 1 tube mic in front of the drums on omni, and 2 dynamic omnis in the room.

Prime Mix:

Loud, aggressive, distorted!

We did about 95% of the mix the day we recorded it, finetuning followed a few months later.
The saxes both got the same plugin chain: eq, vocalrider ( gainrider ), compression, ohmicide multiband distortion.
Of course, the parameters are adjusted fitting to the different saxes, but the overall setting was equal.

The drums were mixed to sound saturated and relentless. There were also mono.
Basically you got saxes on right and left and drums in the middle. We chose not to go for this extreme seperation, but to add some bleed between the 3 instruments. A special ”faked room” group was created for this to which all 3 instruments had a send. This roomgroup was a chain of room, chorus, limiting and distortion. Very ugly and effective 😉

Prime Mastering:

A very simple chain: overall eq to boost the higher mids a bit, some mid/side eq for a slightly beefier mid channel and limiting. This was used on the digital version. For the vinyl version, a slight dip around 8 khz was added and some additional low end mono maker for better vinyl transfer.
The track got cut in half for the vinyl version too, adding a fade out at part one and a fade in. The fade in on part 2 starts were track 1 starts it’s fade out.

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Marlon Wolterink

Marlon Wolterink