SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA – JULY 2015: Originally released by the New Zealand rapper Savage in 2005 as his first solo single, Swing started out big and has only gotten bigger. Shortly after its release, “Swing” peaked at #1 on the New Zealand singles chart. In 2008, its U.S. release was accompanied by versions featuring Soulja Boy and Pitbull, and the song inspired covers by the bands Miss May I and Drop Dead, Gorgeous. But the story doesn’t end there: Australian producer Joel Fletcher remixed the song in 2013, and that version surpassed the original’s stature in Australia, reaching way up to #2 down under. Australia’s largest dance label, Ministry of Sound, hired pro audio mercenary Klaus Hill to freshen up Fletcher’s remix for release on its compilation album, The Annual 2014. That version of “Swing” achieved 4x-platinum sales in Australia and won the 2015 Best Dance Record of the Year award from Australia’s APRA/AMCOS professional society, extending Savage’s original genius into a full decade of excited buzz!
For its latest incarnation, Hill used a Metric Halo 2882 interface to mix the vocal and to perform stem mastering for “Swing”. “Ministry of Sound is one of my regular clients,” he explained. “I’ve been their go-to for mixing and mastering for many years now. Jeff Drake, the label’s head of A+R, asked me to take a look at “Swing” before they released it on their annual compilation album. I mainly worked on the vocal, which was taken a cappella from another Savage song. I used the 2882 to connect to my hardware and – along with MIO Console [Metric Halo’s mixing, routing, and DSP software] – to get everything in the mix sitting just right.”
Released in 2001, the 2882 was Metric Halo’s first interface – and the world’s first FireWire interface! True to its pledge to actually support and future-proof everything it builds, Metric Halo has provided upgrade paths to keep the 2882 as relevant in the world of pro audio today as it was when it was first released. “The 2882 does all the things I need, and it does them well,” Hill said. “The converters sound great, and Metric Halo’s support is second to none. As usual, I mixed “Swing” through Metric Halo’s MIO Console in combination with Pro Tools and Logic. The summing on MIO Console sounds awesome.”
Hill processed the vocals with Metric Halo’s ChannelStrip, Character, and Precision DeEsser plug-ins. “I used ChannelStrip’s EQ to clean things up, as the recording wasn’t the best to begin with,” he said. “It also needed a bit more compression. The effects that Joel had added gave the track the right spirit, but they came with a few problems of their own. DeEsser took care of them. Of course, Character [signal path modeling] goes on everything I mix; it’s amazing. All in all, I was able to get the right sound on a tight deadline without any second-guessing. With Metric Halo, I’m confident in my product.”
To achieve contemporary output levels for the final master, Hill boldly clipped the 2882’s inputs. “I love the sound of the 2882 clipped,” he said. “It’s clean and totally transparent. And I’m able to get so much RMS out of it – it’s crazy!”
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