Flashback NO. 5 「Two-guitar/BAND cover」

Guitar left: SAKURA-chan
Effects modeller: BIAS FX Desktop – Positive Grid noise gate and compression, TS-808 overdrive, Boss RV-6 digital reverb, EHX Small Clone chorus, A/DA flanger
Amp modeller: BIAS FX – Marshall Super Lead Plexi 100W head, Marshall and Mesa Boogie 4 x 12″ cabs

Guitar right: Daphne
Effects modeller: BIAS FX Desktop – Positive Grid noise gate and compression, Fulltone OCD overdrive, DLS TR-1 tremolo
Amp modeller: BIAS FX – Matchless DC-30, Vox AC30 Top Boost

Videocam: GoPro HERO3
Video editing: iMovie v.10
Year: 2017

I loved the surprises SCANDAL put as B-sides in their singles which come across as pretty hard rockers compared to the material on their regular albums (think Rainy, Runners High and 24 Jikan). Like this current cover, I was on holiday in KL after the song was released two years ago when I decided to do a rough cover using Daphne (my Fender 50s Classic Stratocaster), and Positive Grid’s BIAS AMP on my iPad plugged onto MacBook, as seen here:

I meant to re-do the cover but it wasn’t until this past weekend that I thought I should dust off/restring/quick set-up my old Gibson Explorer and try out the BIAS FX Desktop plugin this time. Before I describe the little bits and bobs used on this cover, I have to admit that this sounds more like a 1.5-guitar cover than 2. I was pretty much playing it as a one-guitar cover initially and hadn’t really considered if some of the guitar parts I played were actually HARU’s. I kinda figured it out too late as I was doing the fills with Daphne and during mixing. So, my guitar parts on this may sound a tad lopsided when mixed with the original SCANDAL track.

This cover was also my first venture into really messing about with the BIAS FX plugin. As in really messing about with a smidgin of knowledge. I kinda feel that I prolly didn’t need to tweak the innards of the simulated amps as I could’ve done on BIAS AMP since I won’t be able to do that in real life anyway, hence the choice of the FX plugin.

SAKURA-chan

I used her bridge pickup throughout the song. The chain diagram for SAKURA-chan is essentially:

I wanted to play around with a dual amp setup after watching a how-to YouTube vid by Jake Pitts of Black Veil Brides, so I had two Marshall Super Lead Plexi 100s mixed in the centre, with one head at low gain which is said to provide more clarity to the overall guitar sound.


I have to admit, I just used my ears and dialled what sounded good. The same goes for my choice of 4×12″ cabs for these heads.

The top head has Celestion 25-W Greenbacks and mic-ed centrally on-axis/close with an AKG C414 condenser. Please be reminded that I’m no engineer, this was all trial and error/ears say yeah territory.

The low-gain one has a Mesa 4×12″ cab ambient (just don’t ask lol) mic-ed with an SM-57. The combined tone sounded just nice as far as I was concerned!

Stompbox-wise, it was the proprietary BIAS noise gate and compressor, followed by a TS-808 with the drive, tone and level all at 12 o’clock.

Daphne

I chose the Strat as I wanted a mellower sound for the “0.5” guitar parts covering the chords during the intro octaved MAMI riffs, and the shimmering tremolo-ed arpeggio in the pre-choruses. Check out Daphne’s chain diagram for the overdriven chord component:

The choice of stompboxes is generally as per SAKURA-chan’s with the exception of the Fulltone OCD overdrive (with the drive on full) before the amp. For the tremolo-ed component:

I chose a DLS TR-1 tremolo placed after the amps. The OCD is still in the chain but the drive is dialled back to 1 o’clock. For Daphne, I still opted for dual amps. However, as the plugin didn’t have a SHINOS (obviously) nor an EVH 5150III, I opted for two amps HARU had used at gigs outside of Japan – a Matchless DC-30 and a Vox AC30 Top Boost, both of them miked similarly to the 4×12″ cabs of SAKURA-chan’s Marshalls.

Lastly, the intro of the song. I just cobbled up a couple of modulation effects after the Marshalls, using an EHX Small Clone chorus and an A/DA flanger unit. The Morse code-like notes and the natural harmonic bit on the A string’s 2.6th fret before the intro riff just had a Boss RV-6 digital reverb instead of the two modulation pedals.

UPDATE 27.3.17

This time, I had two of my SCANDAL HEAVEN Cover Bandmates helping out – Indar on bass/drum programming, and Tari on vocals. I also felt that since my involvement in SHCB, doing a full cover is more fulfilling. Also, my covers on YouTube that utilises the original SCANDAL music in the background are beginning to get blocked in Japan and the U.S., to name two countries. For this version, I used the recording I did in KL in the mix. This is my first ever attempt at mixing and mastering a song, thanks to Indar and pinq. Still have lots to learn, though!

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