Tempo on audio recorded without click

Please I apologize in advance for any redundancy : I did some research and I know that this kind of topic is not new to any recording musician. I already went through a myriad of different tutorials and forum posts that cover much of what is possible to do.

a) I own the full version of Cubase 7.5
b) My band and I went in a studio to record our first EP. Record was done there on Logic Audio without a clic as the drummer wasn’t used to . I recovered a post EQ export of each of the individual tracks.

I was not really really satisfied with the mix done by the professional engineer, whose time is money. Not to criticize his job it’s just that we were short on money and that he could’nt bring the mix any futher within the time/money we gave him… but I’ve got plenty of time to try for myself :stuck_out_tongue:

I did a decent mix since then, but I’d now like to try fixing the tempo.

That’s when I hurt a wall. The small tempo variations were easily dealt with a tempo mapping, and then running a fixed tempo throughout the song, but for instance a break missing a quarter note is a real pain :frowning:

Indeed, a missing beat, or a mistakenly added one would lead the mapping to indicate that a huge tempo variation took place, and then the correction applied is far out of the algorythm league to remain unheard when playing at a fixed tempo.

What would you do in that case? Can I Use time signature change on these specific errors to avoid huge tempo vario? (like putting a 3/4 on the bar missing a beat?)

Thanks in advance for your tips on that matter.

A lot of creative editing - slice it all up and move/remove/copy/paste. If it’s a real nightmare - overdub - use samples. Maybe a bit of both.

Thank you for your reply BriHar ! I’m afraid that’s what I thought, probably lots of editing on ~20 tracks needed to correct it and stay close to our original record. Even with good make up, I’m not sure the result can give complete satisfaction.

Maybe as you mention it would be a good idea to start changing my approach and use samples, overdubs, the arranger for the song structure, etc, in order to do this the electro way from the start.

He’s right there, there’s nothing like fine detail editing which takes lots of time but without it you won’t get it up to standard, it’s part of the job usually. Sometimes I do recording with no click and even if the drummer speeds up during a roll it can still sound OK as long as the rest of the band are bang on the beats as well - simply being tightly in with the drums makes an awful lot of difference! But, if it still sounds strange then you will have to slice and move or stretch everything so it fits the metronome. I have customised my keyboard shortcut keys so that I can slice/move/crossfade things very quickly and that’s especially good for editing live shows! Beware of RSI though, take regular breaks…


Thank you Mike ! Beside a few hiccups, the band was pretty tight on the drums and most of the tempo mapping and edits were done altogether with nice result in a folder track. Used the overhead mics to analyse bpm, and later manually adjusted the tempo/grid to fit the metronome. All pretty much in synch and no phasing problems even before removing the bleeds. Now I’m just left with 2 or 3 breaks in the song that cause tempo problems.
I’ll delve deeper into the slice method as I used mostly time warp but I’ll give it a try.

Here’s another thing you can try… Clone a bit from somewhere else. It’s a tried and tested method that works wonders :slight_smile: The musicians never even notice either, they just assume they’re that good at playing :smiley:


Lol !!! Musicians… :wink: reminds me of stories where a studio session player layed down a rerecord track instead of the original band member without anyone knowing.
Yes at least one or two of the drum rolls in the song is fully ok, so cloning would also be an option. A good last resort tip, since the breaks are almost identical in timing and feel that could do the trick. Thanks again!