A Peek into AU Underground’s Post Production

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Ever notice the footnotes in the podcasts descriptions ? Chances are you have seen “Post Production by Adam Barclay”. So what is post production and why do we do it ? Read on for an inside peek into what goes into the final touches of our flagship podcast series.

Once AU Underground receive the mix from our invited feature Artist we send it off to post production at Samui Studios where Adam Barclay puts the final sheen on the mix and fixes Dylan’s presentation in place. So we asked Adam for a a bit more of an insight…

OK, quite simply, what is post production ?

AB: Post-production is the last step before content is released. Generally speaking, it’s the last chance to improve and polish a piece to it’s highest possible standard, in regards to AU Underground both the vocal presentation and the mix goes through this process.

AU Underground's post production guru Adam Barclay in his element at Samui Studios.

AU Underground’s post production guru Adam Barclay in his element at Samui Studios.

Why use post production ?

AB: DJ mixes inherently have flaws – a DJ mixer is a great tool for mixing tracks together but it lacks the subtlety to be ‘perfect’. Errors I usually look for are volume corrections, EQ matching, unruly levels around mix points and subtle balance changes to the overall mix. I also like to do some additional processing to make a mix more coherent.

What is the most common error or challenge you come across on raw mixes ?
AB: Some DJs like to mix very ‘hot’ – this can sometimes be a challenge as it leaves me with less room to move.

What are your personal top 3 AU Underground’s ?

AB: Tough one! There’s been some outstanding mixes and high overall standard over the last few years… I’ll have to go with Dean Benson, Thankyou City (mix 2) and Kyson, those three really stand out in my mind. But if you asked me again tomorrow, it could definitely be a different three!

And for the nerds, what program(s) do you use and what are your go to plug-ins for vocal effects and mastering ?

AB: I’m a Logic Pro nerd for sure, switched to it for most of my production needs 8 years ago and feel really comfortable with it now. For other vocal processing, I’m definitely a sucker for the UAD plug-ins, the LA2A compressors, Pultec EQs and bx_refinement saturator all get fairly heavy use. For mastering, I commonly use Fabfilter Pro-Q2, Waves L3, Slate FG-X and iZotope Ozone suite, but use of these really depends on the source material. As with all things audio production, I think you need to be flexible with your processing choices, no two pieces are the same and this should be reflected in your workflow.

If you would like to ask about having post production/mastering or even presentation on your own mixes. Please contact us for rates and availability.

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