Here is my latest cover project, another epic track from Metallica - Welcome Home (Sanitarium).
This is the first track I’ve ever covered from the Master Of Puppets album, but I did two last year from their previous album “Ride The Lightning”. It’s pretty cool and interesting to see how they keep building on top of what they learned from their previous albums. This track is in many ways similar to the ballad “Fade To Black”, but perhaps taken up a notch in complexity and difficulty.
Hope you enjoy it!
And, as per usual, a “guitar only” render for those interesting in dissecting the parts and tones I used:
Absolutely great playing , I don’t know how many times I’ve heard this song but “ridiculously often” is kind of the right “number” …and your playing is sublime, …unfortunately I really miss the sharpness here / raw singing voice of James Hetfield which really belongs here, … but your guitar playing is amazing,…
@J.W.C Thanks man! I bought the “individual stem” version from karaoke-version.com, so I could use just the drums, bass and vocals… and mix the parts with my guitar tracks exactly how I wanted them. So not a backing track, in the traditional sense.
@roger_holland Thanks! I agree, Hetfield is an amazing vocalist - getting even better with age - and his growl is unique and hard to copy. But as a cover vocal (and compared to some of the other offerings on karaoke-version) I actually think this guy did a decent job
Roger brings up an interesting point though. In the past I always did instrumental versions, when covering a track. Now, with karaoke-version, there is an option to get vocals as well. I sometimes go back and forth on them… on the one hand I feel that vocals add a lot to the overall enjoyment of a track, but at the same time… vocals are always so signature in how they sound that - especially for well known songs - they can quickly sound off. And even more so if the performer has an accent. What do you guys think? Would these covers sound better without vocals?!?
I think that for everyone who has not listened to Metallica like me (all my life from quite young at least) very much, but really a lot … and can dream the music and singing note for note, this way you bring it now, the vocals are definitely an addition,…i think for a lot of listeners that it is no “problem” at all to replace James and that it is only up to me,…
I hope there are more proponents than people who share my feeling,…this man sings absolutely well, let that be clear,…
This rocks and then some. Tones are great, playing is beyond that in a fantastic way. I really enjoyed this one a lot. I think the best thing about this is the pounding and grinding guitars. Just excellent stuff. Some of the runs you pulled off are a hit for me.
I would have thought over 6 minutes of song would be repetitive, but I did not find that at all.
Great job and it leaves one wanting more!
All the best and be well on them strings and in health,
Thanks for the comments! One thing that I forgot to mention in the OP; I actually decided to try to use plugins for most tones on this one. I really wanted to experiment with just how good I could make that sound in a full mix… normally I tend to prefer using my amps.
So this is pretty much all tones coming from HelixNative (the DAW plugin version of the Helix / PodGO hardware units). The only exception is for the clean tones - I used an amp there for the “core tone” - but with HelixNative doing all the post-amp effects like reverb and such. (I could have easily used it for the core clean tone as well, but I only decided on the idea after having tracked all the clean parts and did not feel like re-recording them for the same result ).
But all distorted tones - rhythm and lead - is just some Helix amp models with effects.
All in all I’m quite impressed/happy with how that sounds. We’re living in a world where modelling has gotten insanely good I think!!
I only had one serious problem with the Helix plugin - and that was for the tremolo effect on two of the clean guitar tracks. The tone needs the tremolo to pulse exactly in time with the track… and it seems like HelixNative is using a global system clock for the LFO - so it’s completely random each time you record/play a track where the pulsing starts!
Maybe this is fine for normal/live playing and certain tremolo effects, but completely useless for recording and a huge problem for Helix IMO!
I had to buy a separate plugin from SoundToys called “Tremolator”… that works great. It locks the LFO to the tempo and bars in the DAW host, so you get the same and expected result every single time…
(Black Friday fell on a lucky time for me, it was on offer at a significant discount).
Good to the last bar sir! Guitar work was spotless with excellent tone. I can’t speak to how close this is to the original as I’m not familiar with the record. A lot of TLC went into this, and your skills were right there on display. Well done!
I only checked it out just now! Sounds pretty great at first listen - I get some vibes from their very first album, but with modern production values and (much) tighter playing. Not crazy with the sound of the double kick drum parts… the rest kicks ass though
In general, I like vocals in covers. However, I think it works best (without having that “something’s off” impression) if the cover is taking a different path than the original. That is, maybe different instruments (like an acoustic version of an electric song), or noticeably different key or tempo. Johnny Cash’s version of Hurt is the first example that jumps to mind.
I think the “somethings off” effect from different vocals gets magnified when the cover is mostly mirroring the original (similar instruments, tones, tempo, mostly note-for-note, etc). And, as you note, it’s even more magnified when the song is well known or the original singer has a very distinctive voice or delivery. But sometimes it works just fine…
I could go either way. I guess I’d decide on a case-by-case basis.
Mr Fauerby what can I say ? That was spot on. Just listening to the mp3 in isolation and the tones are incredible you have really captured the original. Its been a while since I played the full album but this was so amazingly close to the original. Hat’s off to you sir.
An interesting question about the vocals. I think I guessed the BT source once “not quite James” started to croon. But I am really in two minds on this. When you have covered other “classics” as instrumentals they have all worked really well and the vocals have not been missed and there is less distraction from the playing. But the vox also provide a little extra authenticity, however the quality of the vox will have a bearing on that. This would have worked for sure sans-not quite James. If you dip into that site’s Aerosmith collection I recommend reducing the stems by at least one and I am sure you’ll figure which one !
Way out of my comfort zone in both play grade and knowledge of genre, but I’m able to recognise class when I hear it
I’ll just ‘thumbs up’ and echo all the comments above
It’s funny your question about the vocals-
I had this playing before I read the blurb and thought@ "Ohe cool, he got Rock-vox@crocodile1 to collaborate again I thought that sounded fantastic. When the singer became anonymous again, I had less interest and focused back on the guitar.
On the whole, I agree with @J.W.C