Today we’re checking out how I approach recording screaming or death metal style vocals. Personally I prefer singers, but hey I get it, everybody is trying to out evil each other. This vocal style is very popular- apparently there’s a lot of evil out there! I’ve certainly recorded enough bands doing it.
From an engineering standpoint, the style is dead simple. Throw up an SM 7 onto a stand, put up a pop filter, get your levels on your mic pre, make sure the vocalist is at the proper level, run it into a compressor, hit record and away you go!
That’s all there is to it.
The difficulty with recording this style comes from the vocalist. Some guys can’t work on a stand that’s not so bad! An SM7 is very difficult to make it sound bad… even though people do try! (cue mic cuppers)
The issue I have with taking the mic off the stand is that you lose a pop filter and that the SM 7 can be more susceptible to pops and hard consonants- That would be the P’s, the T’s, and the K’s! To understand what I’m getting at hold your hand out in front of your mouth about 6 inches away and say P and T. You’ll feel a blast of air. That’s called a plosive and can make a microphone sound like it’s farting in the low end.
Now the effect will vary from vocalist of vocalists. I’m personally really susceptible to it and I can’t record a voice over on an SM 7 without an extra pop filter in there!Even though the SM 7 has grading and a windscreen.
If you’re going to work with a vocalist off the stand proceed with caution and watch out for those closest because they will ruin your takes.
If you don’t have an SM 7, don’t worry! Condenser mics will work great too! Watch “How to record Extreme Vocals” to learn my techniques!