Crossing streams with this excellent thread (particularly thoughts on multi-tracking vs stereo mix):
Coming from a personal history of (shitty) three-piece bands, I’ve always approached FX like I’m working with stomp boxes rather than being able to think in terms of busses. The benefits of the latter are clear for post, but the stomp box approach is definitely in the DNA of how I’m playing and patching my small system (finally coming together after some false starts over the last year and a half).
My routing is limited to four open tracks in Ableton, pulling audio from different outs on the modular, with an instance of Valhalla Vintage Verb on each. Most of the time they’re 15-20% wet and rarely are they ever set to similar presets/parameters, but I find that some small tailored-to-the-voice resonance helps me better engage with the composition/patching process. It adds an element of breath that inspires and fuels discoveries. If I went all bus, I’d miss those happy accidents of turning one track completely wet and realizing it’s how that voice wanted to be all along.
I’ve been recording sketches and sessions in this way, with some key parameters on VVV mapped to a knobby MIDI controller to give it corporeality. Rather than ‘print’ the effects, I record the dry signal of each input with the automation data – this makes going back in and tweaking parameters non-destructive, while keeping the performative impulses intact for later evaluation.
That plugin in particular just makes sense with synths. I would kill for a pedal version, but then I’d immediately want four of them. ¯\(ツ)_/¯