Weblog - White Tree Studio Diary

september 2006
After a long pause I finally mastered 'To Leave this Misery'

october 2005
After re-recording some vocals in June it is now time for some serious mixing.
It took me 2 days to get a good mix (the first day I had to get the song by heart again). I also decided to cut the song shorter.
I felt there was too much boring rubbish and stolen stuff in the second half of the song.
'Kill your darlings' they say....
I killed one.... but it's better this way.

may 7th, 2005
The first few try-out-mixes made me think I have to re-record the whisperings.
But I still have to think about it... (I can record any vocals now, since I got a cold).

may 1st, 2005
I finished recording all vocals today!
Lets start the mixing!

march 14th, 2005
It's been a while since I updated this page....
I can't say I did very much recording past months. I'm sorry...
But past few days I've been working on a new song: Blind. Drums & synth are already recorded. I also recorded bass and guitars, but there are too many mistakes and 'happy little accidents' on tape.
Today I started recording the vocals for To Leave This Misery, but I didn't finish it. There are still some bad parts, but I had to quit; too much noise around the house.
Anyway, I did, more or less, mix the whole song and put a new sample online.
I hope you enjoy it.....

december 16th, 2004
I finished recording all guitars today!
Though it took me about an hour to clean my recorderhead properly, everything went alright
Next step: the vocals!
This means I will have to finish the lyrics first.......

november 26th, 2004
Just another fridayafternoon
At last I finished recording the basslines!
Next week: the guitars!!!!!

november 21th, 2004
Nothing today.....
Past weeks I've been busy, ill and sick, so I'm still in the middle of recording the bassguitars.
I guess I was too optimistic in september.
But I recorded about 2 thirds of the bassguitar parts, so I still made some progress.
I don't know when I will finish this song, since school is taking me more and more time lately.
Anyway, stay tuned and you will know it when this song is ready.....

october 31th, 2004
At last I started with recording the final version of TLTM.
It took more time than I thought to work out the final details (and I don't always want to work on my music).
All drums and synth-parts are now recorded properly.
The next few days will be spent with some serious practising, after which I expect to begin recording the (bass)guitars.

september 23th, 2004
It's autumn again...
Past few days I've been busy recording yet another pre-production of TLTM.
I guess this is the 4th version and a lot has changed since the first version.
This time it feels good, with just some details left to work out, I am certain I'm almost ready to record the definitve version.
The lyrics are also almost finished, so nothing can stop me now!
Well, nothing?
Last april I thought I was ready to start recording, but I wasn't....
I just hope I am this time.......

april 28th, 2004
The past few months haven't really been productive, although I'm working on another new song now.
The working-title is To leave this misery (TLTM). I'm already working on the drums now, so I guess that the recording can start next week.
This one will be a bit longer than reflections and I hope it won't get to boring.
After a relax start it has some parts with a very repetitive bassline and the end will be a bit psychedalic.
The lyrics are far from finished now, but I will continue writing after the recording has been finished (or inspiration has struck me by surprise).
In february I found the time to do a wet mix
of Reflections. The sound is far better now: better balance, more power, more clarity (2nd guitar and keys are audible now), without compromizing the warm, dark atmosphere. Although the lower end isn't perfect, you could say I'm very happy with the final mix.
I even got some positive response!!! (thank you fans, you make it all worth it ;-) )
I also chose a name for this project:

Extinguished Fire

After TLTM I will continue composing The End of Bliss and Dreams asap, but I'm afraid it will take some time to do all that.

january, 2004
Happy new year to you al!
This month I was very busy studying, so music wasn't my top priority.
But that didn't stop me from writing some music, including a new song.
As soon as I got some time I will do some recording!

december 5th, 2003
I purchased a new 19" processor; the TC Electronics M-300 and it sounds great.
This thing creates new possibilities.

december 1th, 2003
I chose the lyrics for "Elegy" today. It's called "End of Bliss" and can be read on the poetry-section.
I have the feeling the lyrics will fit the music just fine.

autumn, 2003
I've been very busy with school so except for some pre-production-recordings for both "Elegy" and a new song "Dreams" I didn't do much.
For "Dreams" I had written the lyrics years ago and the song is based on a simple repetative bass-line. I just resurrected one of the first 'compositions' I played when I played guitar for a week or so.
But I transposed it to bass-guitar and it won't be a simple song, just a bit mesmerisingly monotone (i hope). Besides, my room is a complete mess now. Espacially since I bought a new computer
Anyway, I will keep on recording on tape, the computer will be used only for the mastering-proces.

summer, 2003
This summer was extremely hot. The heat made it impossible to record anything and survive it.
But the writing on "Elegy" continued...

may 6th, 2003
I renamed "F&R" to "Reflections" and imported it on a computer to convert it to MP3. The conversion caused some strange cracks and hisses on the sound, but it still gives a good impression of the song. It's even online now:
Just go to the music section and check it out!

may 5th, 2003
Bevrijdingsdag ('Liberation-Day'). Yesterday was a beautiful day, today it feels like autumn again; the perfect atmosphere for doom and to make a dry-mix of "F&R". It was quite dificult to get the balance right, since I have the tendency to boost the bass to much.
A few hours later I got a relative good mix on Mini-Disc with the bass in the right place. It's not a perfect mix, but I don't want to wast any more time on this.... Next stop is a wet mix to put on CD!

april 30th, 2003
It's Koninginnedag ('Queensday') again! The morning looks bad; it's raining, so I decide to stay home and do some homework. But what happens! This afternoon it stops raining and the rest of the family is away. It's perfectly silent! So I re-recorded the 2nd vocals on "F&R" and this time they sound much better. Still I go for the monotone low voice, but this time it sounds just better and the timing is good. I really think I finished the recordings of "F&R"! Next time it's mixing time!

april 21th, 2003
4 Weeks later.... "F&R" isn't finished yet, but I started a trial-recording for a new song called "Elegy". I just recorded the first basic guitar-riffs accompanied with some simple drums and the bass-line. After that I started improvizing on the lead-guitar on several tracks.
Some pieces sounded well enough to develop further, untill it fits the song.
Meanwhile I still didn't re-record the 2nd vox on "F&R", since I had a sore throat (I got a cold), maybe next week...

march 29th, 2003
Time for a wet mix! The overall sound is very good, the reverb adds a lot of depth, but I'm still not sure about the vocals. I'll terrorize some friends with it to check their response.
Maybe I will whisper the lyrics.
Anyway, I think I have to do some experiments with my voice to find the right, fitting sound.
How sad it is to hear recordings aren't finished at all...but fear not, I'm almost there! And I have to find another title than "Fear and Regret"...this one is dull...

march 23th, 2003
Time to mix "F&R" the first time! The first dry mix (to cassette) was very raw: only grunts and the keys are far away on the background. My conclusion on friday was correct; the grunts are too dark and too deep. The second dry mix sounded better. The keys are still on the background, but now audiable and I mixed the two voices. This sounds a bit better, but I hate my voice!
I think I have to rerecord the 2nd vox. But I'll decide later...

march 21th, 2003
Spring has come! It's fridayevening again and all is quiet at home, since I'm the only one left. My voice is doing fine again. I had a cold last week, but the sore throath is gone now.
So I connected the mic to the delay and started to grunt. I was a bit surprised by the low sound of my voice. This is really dark! A bit too dark actually... So I added an extra track with vox (I still had some space on one of the 8 tracks). I just said the lyrics in a low monotone fashion.
I know I can't sing, maybe I should master the style of Darren White (former Anathema) from the "Pentacost III"-EP? It took 2 hours to produce these vocals properly. First mixing will start this weekend...

march 16th, 2003
At last I found the right sound for the rythm-guitar! It took some time but the instrumental version of "F&R" is finished. The end was tough to play right, because the lead made me want to accelerate, while I shouldn't. Next time I have to do the vocals....but I can't sing...

march 15th, 2003
Interlude... The acoustic interlude has been recorded today, including some distorted background guitars. After finishing this I started with the rythm-guitar, but couldn't finish recordings, since I was only figuring out the right sound and presets to get it all sounding as I want it to sound.

march 14th, 2003
I picked up where I left last monday: the lead guitar-parts... After a few runs the first part was finished and near the end of the second part I improviced a bit to break the slow, hypnotising melody and give it a faster, haunting twist before it suddenly ends.

march 11th, 2003
Though I should be very busy doing my home work, I decided to try to record the lead guitar tonight. I tried to do it all in one run, but in the end only the intro sounded as it should.
The whole of "F&R" has to be redone another day, since there are still a few flaws in it.
But the intro sounds a lot better than the very first improviced version. I rewrote it a little bit, so now it fits better.

march 8th, 2003
After finishing composing "F&R" during last week, the day has come to start recording the final version. Today I recorded all the keys and drums during the afternoon. Getting the sound right was a lot of work, but I'm very happy now with the production. In the evening I recorded the bass-line. This took almost two hours to get it right (after 5 weeks I'm still not a routined bass-player), but I finished just in time to go to the pub and try to forget the blisters this session gave me.

februari 28th, 2003
A beautifull day! The new mix is a lot better; the bass-line can now be heared (!!).
Inspired by everything that happened last weeks I wrote the lyrics for this one real quick, well, there are only five lines. I decided the working-title is "fear & regret".
The other lyric I wrote today is titled "end of spring". The titles may change (and probably will) during the process.
Anyway, I progressed a bit with composing "F&R", but it will take some time to finish it.

februari 27th, 2003
Now I programmed the drumsection the first recordings can start.
It's a try-out to see if the different part come together.
The recordings went well (the drums are too weak and the re-recording of the intro sucks, but nevermind...it's a test).
The 2 guitars combine well and the monotone structure is doing great.
This IS slowpaced doommetal!
Tired of recording the mix didn't quiet work out....maybe tomorrow....

february 26th, 2003
After 2 days of hard work at PTMD I decided to try and make some music.
My back and arms really hurt, so I could only do some stuff on the synthesizer.
The song that should follow the 'intro' is slowly emerging.
This is the first time I start writing a song with the keys, instead of guitar, so let's see what happens...

february 21th, 2003
Though the mix is poor and mixed to cassette, I put it online.
http://wdka.hro.nl/~0547721/open/demo
The balance is no good and there's a lot of noise, but it's a nice first impression.
In the evening I mixed it down again to MD.
This version is way better (better balance, less noise). This one will appear online later.

february 20th, 2003
1:45pm. Still busy mixing the track, I decided to go and get some sleep.

february 19th, 2003
I was working on a 8 second soundtrack for a leader, but it didn't work out.
However, I started to jam and suddenly a short instrumental grew.
Few hours later I had finished recording.
It's an intro to a song I did't make yet.
There's lots of strings, bass and guitar.