The Cure - A Forest (cover)

This was a great project for over the Christmas break. My friend Craig is on bass while I tackled the guitar, vocals and the synth. My main instrument is of course the vocals (just kidding it is guitar lol) and I am just starting to dabble in MIDI controller for keys.

Thanks for listening and for any comments!


Wow, Zoltan! Very well done on this! You’ve got that vibe of the original. Nice sounds on the guitar as well, I like the tone very much. Also well done on vox, bass and drums. Very enjoyable production all over!
Greetings from a The Cure fan :star_struck:.

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Thanks so much, glad you enjoyed the many elements. The guitar is actually fairly simple on this song, so great for learning

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yes, wow! That was great! Loved it :smiley:
I’m a big fan of The Cure too, and A Forest is one of my favourites. Thanks for sharing :slight_smile:

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Wow, that was very well done, Zoltan! :clap:
Got the mood, playing and vocals sound good and overall production works out just fine! :smiley:

Thanks for sharing.

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A great classic to learn! Thanks

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Thanks Lisa, I actually am really starting to enjoy the final mixing process, a bit of an art form in itself!

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That sounded great all round, Zoltan, both performances and mix.

As you say, mixing is an art in its own right. Lots to learn and fun to be had. Throw in the use of digital instruments and you have all you need at home to produce covers as you did or your own original music.

I don’t know The Cure and have no idea what the original sounds like in order to compare. With that in mind the only thing I might consider in your mix is width. The levels of the various instruments and vocal were well balanced but all sounded in the middle. I like songs to have a little more width through careful use of panning, either on instruments or on fx like reverb and delay.

Please, that’s not a criticism of your production, it was perfectly fine. That’s just my subjective taste from a mixing perspective. And of course may not be how the original sounds which may have been your reference to replicate.

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Very nice production work Zoltan - superb playing and mixing. Should be proud of this!

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David, I really appreciate the constructive feedback. The mix is something that Craig and I have been putting some attention to more than ever, and really it is only the beginning of our journey. We have recorded a few songs and are getting more picky about the final mix, but at the same time are not super experienced in this arena. I have not played with any panning, just recording a few “mono” instruments and simply leaving them balanced. I wonder if sending all tracks through a SEND reverb would help out with the width? How do you like to hear panned instruments in the mix typically? This is not something I have thought about to be honest. Once again, I am not against constructive criticism if it means a better overall quality to the broad listeners.

Thanks, glad you enjoyed!

Zoltan, you can certainly make use of SENDs to tracks with reverb and also delay on. Sometimes you could create two and pan one left and the other right with different reverb and/or delay on each.

As a basic ‘rule of thumb’ I generaly start with drums and bass in the middle, lead vocal middle, backing vocals off-middle, and other instruments panned either left or right. If working with say a single guitar and keys track then I’d pan them on oppopsite sides but probably not a high degree of pan.

Could be 15-20% on either side. I find in that case if pan a high degree can make the overall sound a little too pulled apart.

But it always involves a lot of experimentation and tinkering to get panning, levels, SENDs all balanced so the overall has the fullness and width but hangs together.

Another strategy is to double-track or duplicate the guitar track. I wrote about that in a reply on Pam’s latest recording here: BYE BYE LOVE Cover - #31 by DavidP

If you are interested then you’ll find many channels on YouTube with people talking about music production. I really enjoy it, as much as I enjoy playing. But like playing, one needs to find good learning material and practice.


Hey Zoltan, that was really cool! Love this track by The Cure, in fact I learnt it a few months back to play in our live “mini-gig” we did here but ended up dropping it as I couldn’t get the vocals to an acceptable level. I thought you did a great job with the vocals though! Such a difficult voice to nail, a lot of subtly in getting the right feel, well done! :clap: I also found the outro solo (or kind of solo at least :laughing:) a bit tricky to remember due it’s slightly odd phrasing. I note you didn’t play that, was that a stylistic choice or perhaps did you find the same struggles as me? :thinking: Anyway, really good stuff, great playing, singing and production! :sunglasses: :+1:

Cool production you guys!

Kudos on the the vocal, it is harder as it sounds, I speak from experience :smiley:
There sure is some potential in that so don’t be afraid to seek out your ideal range for some songs and do some transposing/capo’ing

That is solid advice and things to think about. I will certainly keep this in mind when mixing. The next song we are working on is New Year’s Day by U2. Will have a few layers.

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The goal of these projects is to play a sing and record with guitar and bass primarily, not to exactly match but to give the flavour of the original with hopefully a bit of originality. I did not try the part you are referring to just because I want to continue exploring more diversity of songs and i don’t want to linger too long on each learning project. It is a journey where with limited time, I don’t want to be stuck for months. The vocals are a personal fun challenge and I am only looking for small improvements from song to song over time.

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Great idea on the capo. I generally don’t think about that option often so great reminder

Great production, lads :sunglasses:
It’s been a while since I heard the original, but it was instantly recognisable and seemed to capture the essence very well. Bravo!
New Year’s Day next, eh? Let’s hope all is not quiet… :roll_eyes: :rofl:

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Recognizable is a good start! I’ll take it!

First offering I have spun up tonight that was mixed to within about -1dB of the max allowed at YouTube. Good job there and on the mix.

I don’t think I have ever heard this song. You folks did it well though. Good job and nice vox too. Sounds like you folks could play a club or small gigs.

All the best,