How to Record Screaming Vocals?

How to record screaming vocals? Before discussing microphone selection and location, discussing how to get the most out of your recording sessions is important. A variety of factors can harm a vocalist’s voice; thus, it goes without saying that avoiding using these substances before a session is essential. Ensure the performer is aware that they should abstain from dairy products (milk, cheese, chocolate), menthol, and cigarettes before and during the recording session. How to record screaming vocals? It’s crucial to stay hydrated before beginning to record voices. The greatest way to maintain the singer’s vocal cords supple and in top singing condition is to provide them with water or tea.

How to Record Screaming Vocals?

Heating up

Singing is similar to sports in that you only play with warming up first. By warming up your vocal cords, you can avoid overusing them and harming your voice when recording the takes. To get the most out of your session, developing effective warm-up procedures as both a performer and an engineer is crucial.

Making the talent comfortable

How to record screaming vocals? The key to producing excellent vocals is undoubtedly making the vocalist as comfortable as possible. They will sing far more effectively if they are at ease rather than tense or self-conscious. Make sure to praise them and make them feel welcome because singing is such a personal activity. Making them a cup of tea or offering them food like an apple can frequently put the vocalist at ease.

It can also help them produce outstanding vocal takes by distracting them from the task. It depends on the vocalist; some may choose to record vocal takes between discussions, while others may prefer to focus on recording vocals and postpone the conversation until after. Once the singer is at ease, the headphone mix is very important. Singers prefer to sing sharper to compensate when they can’t hear enough of themselves, while they tend to sing flat when they can hear too much of themselves. Getting that great vocal take requires balancing them with the music.

Microphone Selection

How to record screaming vocals? Choosing the best mics for recording vocals can be challenging initially due to the wide range of microphones available. If you have just one microphone, your choice is already made. The choice is made more difficult if you’re trying to acquire a microphone or have a variety to choose from. It’s crucial to take a step back and consider both the singer’s voice and how you want your vocal to sound before selecting your microphone. A good take can be improved by pairing the correct microphone with the performer.

Ribbon vs. Dynamic vs. Condenser

Check out our page on microphone types, which will help you grasp the distinctions between each type of microphone before continuing to read. Since there is no way to change the final vocal take once recorded, selecting the right microphone is crucial. Large-diaphragm condenser microphones are the industry standard because they capture the finest detail and frequency content. In this manner, you avoid having a surplus of ingredients. Condenser microphones are suitable for most singing styles; however, there are specific tasks where a dynamic microphone would better capture the singer’s voice. For instance, most engineers will choose a dynamic microphone like the Shure SM7b or Electrovoice RE20 if you want to record loud vocals or screaming. Because they can handle greater SPL levels better, dynamic microphones are favored. How to record screaming vocals?

You might wonder, “Why would I need a ribbon microphone when a condenser or dynamic microphone will do just fine?” Ribbon microphones, albeit infrequently used, provide you with different qualities from your typical condenser or dynamic. Ribbon microphones frequently produce a warmer, darker sound than any other type of microphone, rolling off the higher frequencies to enhance the low end. It’s crucial to keep the following in mind when using a ribbon microphone for recording:

Always wear a pop shield.

Using a pop shield safeguards the delicate ribbon because they are far more delicate than condensers or dynamic microphones. Ribbons will exhibit a greater proximity impact due to their figure-8 polar pattern.

Polar Patterns

Understanding when to use each Polar Pattern is essential for using microphone technology, which heavily relies on them. Knowing the strengths and drawbacks of each rhythm will help you create a vocal take that sounds better overall. These polar patterns can all be used in many ways. The proximity effect, which increases the bass the closer you are to cardioid and figure-8 polar patterns, occurs. This can be helpful if you want to “fatten” up a singer whose voice is slightly weaker, but it can also sound out of place when applied to the wrong voice. Ensure the singer is standing around 6 inches from the microphone to prevent this. The proximity effect is absent in the omnidirectional polar pattern because of its nature.

When recording voices, a cardioid pattern is typically used because you want to capture the sound from the front of the mic, where the vocalist will be standing, and reject everything else. When micing a singer with an acoustic guitar or even a live performance where all the musicians are in the same room, knowing where each microphone rejects sound is useful.

Microphone Placement

How to record screaming vocals? The correct placement of the microphone is essential while recording vocals. Now, it should go without saying that you will need to position it in front of the vocalist. But you may use a few easy tricks to polish your vocal sound. Place the microphone about 6 inches from the singer to start. It’s a good idea to move another mic stand with a pop shield attached to where the vocalist has to stand if they are having problems maintaining that distance. This also simplifies angling your pop shield, saving you a lot of time. If a pop shield is unavailable, angling the microphone off-axis can also help reduce plosives.

Ensure the vocalist’s mouth is directly in line with the microphone’s diaphragm when placing the microphone. You should get the most authentic sound by doing this. However, raising and angling the microphone will result in a more nasally sound, while lowering it will result in a more chesty, bassy sound in the recording. To get the required sound, appropriately adjust the microphone.

Recording isolation

The idea that you must record professional-sounding voices in a sound booth must be clarified. The majority of singers, in actuality, don’t perform at their best when they’re shut off from everything. Since it’s important to make a performance as comfortable as possible, locking them up in a closet is not the greatest solution.

Placing acoustic foam behind the microphone is one mistake many people make while attempting to isolate their microphone from interference. This must be clarified because the microphone picks up sound primarily from the front when utilizing a cardioid polar pattern. It becomes sense to place acoustic foam behind the performer to prevent anything from entering the microphone. This will provide the most seclusion. Many producers will record with the singer in the same room since communication between the singer and the recording engineer is essential. As a result, after a take, they may both speak freely and readily without going through talkback, etc. Recording in the control room will be fine as long as you both have a set of headphones!


How to record screaming vocals? These pointers will help you achieve wonderful vocal performances, leading to great vocal recordings. Because often, the best sounds emerge from the most unexpected locations, experiment with polar patterns/microphone kinds and placement.

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