To jump on the band wagon, here’s the process I followed for this track:
I recorded my track in Garage Band on a MacBook.
I started with the vocal tracks that I had recorded previously (I had performed it on stage as part of a show, hence it’s quite dramatic) and had the original backing track in as a reference.
My initial thought was to work through the various parts of the original and swap them out with something new one by one. I started with the synths that run through the song and recorded my equivalent on guitar and bass. In the original the main movement is the top note, I switched that around so that was in the bass and played palm muted power chords on my tele. I also laid down a second bass track beneath everything else to give some depth.
I then selected a drummer from the built-in garage band library and tweaked the generated track until I was happy with the progression.
This more or less established a new ‘backing track’ and I turned to the lead guitar, for which I used the JB on my Brian Moore.
I stared by noodling over the solo verse in the middle and developed something I was happy with over a few takes. I went back to the intro and recorded a simplified version, then went to the outro and recorded an embellished version. I did end up modifying this original seed quite extensively, which was hard because I liked it, but it was good for the track.
I then recorded a version of the original’s lead guitar (excluding solos) over the original backing track and added it with a softer spread chorus and delay effect. I wanted it to be present but not dominant. I also tweaked the bridges slightly.
Finally, I went through a few rounds of balancing and tweaking to get everything sitting together nicely (vocals gave me some trouble) and gave it a sprinkling of master faery dust with compressors, brighteners, etc.
All guitar sounds, etc. are native to garage band with relatively little change.
The result is a little more produced than I really would prefer but this is a natural effect of not having the time (or chops) to learn all the parts properly and having to rely on quantization, etc. to pull it all together.
I have two main criticisms of my own work.
1) Overall the sound lacks a bit of high end punch, which (I think) comes down to the melody instruments and vocals being mids heavy… I suspect this is why most rock and metal guitar solos venture up the neck. It may also be influenced by the fact that the track is down a tone and a half on the original (I’m not Freddy) but I haven’t changed the arrangement that much.
2) The overall sound is pretty homogenous and there isn’t as much movement as I’d like from start to finish. In retrospect, I could have bled the main rhythm sound in more slowly at the beginning and modified it in the last verse or so, but this didn’t really occur to me because I wanted to follow the synth in the original… or maybe I should have just added a rap verse.
If anyone has any feedback (workflow, production or performance), I'd love to hear it 🙂