Professional Studio exclusively dedicated to Audio Mastering in Portuguese grounds.
Only a professional with the best conditions can offer you a solid and concise opinion that allows you to turn your project into a unique and coherent Musical Record. To help you see the big “picture” in a realistic panorama and make your music sound balanced and open, like providing the best notions, whether in detail, depth and impact in the most diversified devices and sound systems available; that is our main goal. A “good” Mastering doesn’t create “sound wars” with music, nor makes it lose its original character; but supports the Recording personality and essence and makes it more translucent and equal to itself. A unique space, dedicated and treated acoustically with a top listening system that reveals to us the tiniest details of a Musical Record are our best allies, as they help us make creative and technical decisions that contribute to a better production, Record after Record.
Sweet Mastering Studio's mastering engineer João Alves is a certified partner and provider for Apple’s Digital Masters Providers. All our mastering chain and workflow has been certified and aggregated by Apple which result in our MFiT certification.
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3 ReviewsEndorse Sweet Mastering Studio
I was looking for mastering a jazz/classical/world duo album of violin & piano. After considering looking at many options, Joao was the right choice. He's a truly skilled professional that will deliver the final touch that your music needs. Communication was fast and precise. He brought great ideas that improved the record. I will totally recommend it for any acoustic type of music.
Great mastering! Pays specific attention to detail and very engaging to work with. Went above and beyond to make sure the song got what it needed. Looking forward to working on future projects!
João is a wonderful mastering engineer. He always took his best efforts in every process and delivered all the masters I wanted. I absolutely want to work with him again on my future projects.
Interview with Sweet Mastering Studio
Q: If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?
A: Lets be realistic here, since there's probably no electricity or simple ways to build a proper high-end mastering studio, I would just bring for sure my Martin acoustic guitar and four packs of cold beer and have a good time... well, at least for a while!:)
Q: What type of music do you usually work on?
A: I've worked on pretty much everything from Lisbon Film Orquestra and ensemble music to Pop Rock and Funky Records. Lately I'm doing a lot of Jazz and music for picture. That's why I love to do this, never know what genre will be next. I even get a little anxious when I hear for the first time the music of a new collaborator. So much fun! :)
Q: What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?
A: All the creative and hardworking people around the globe. They are the ones that have low standards for high quality productions instead of high standards for low, low quality ones.
Q: Tell us about your studio setup.
A: It's just a pile of good equipment and the right set of tools that I need around me.
Q: What do you bring to a song?
A: A blend of aesthetics and engineering on how we want to perceive sound and what can I do to enhance it in the direction that we seek, together.
Q: Can you share one music production tip?
A: Keep some time to yourself to study what you like to do regarding sound and music. Do that till you die! Working, creating, producing isn't all. Remember that inspiration comes also in unusual ways and forms.
Q: What do you like most about your job?
A: Being part of the musical record that I'm working on and be proud at the end. It really feels amazing being proud too of something that I worked on years later.
Q: Analog or digital and why?
A: Both! Is like getting the best out of both Worlds, knowing that I can count with them to help me listen to my decisions.
Q: What questions do you ask prospective clients?
A: If they can tell more about the project that I'll be working on, the music, where they record and who produced. What they are trying to accomplish, ideas about the sound, if they are really glad with the mixes...
Q: What's your 'promise' to your clients?
A: For me, it’s not about the equipment, tools or sound system that I may have at the studio, it’s the people involved. We are humans, we need to feel, communicate and get inspired – every day. Music is the same. My promise is to never deliver a master to my clients if I 'm not completely satisfied with the approach that has been done. Be completely honest with my collaborators is the biggest promise that I can offer.
Q: What's the biggest misconception about what you do?
A: Loudness and Dynamics. And essentially statements like mastering is just putting everything louder without ruining completely the sound. I don't see what I do as a regular service, but rather as a collaboration. Doing a professional mastering is allowing and giving the chance of your music to be enhanced in the best possible way by someone who not only have the skills and knowledge to do it properly but also is performing it with a high level of reliability. In my opinion, in Mastering, every process that degrades the sound quality and/or our perception of sound quality is a bad thing to do.
Q: Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.
A: I'm dedicated exclusively to Mastering. Mastering also as a creative process. Now it’s so much more than it used to be in the past, It evolved and mutated. In fact that's the reason that mastering still exists and on these days plays a more important role than ever before.
Q: What's your typical work process?
A: Well I hear the full material for the first time from beginning to the end; I listen carefully to the full material (and write notes) from beginning to the end. Then I'll talk to my collaborators to discuss what we'll do next and on what it would be the right direction that we will seek, together. Trust is important, it's everything. I'm not just a geek working alone surrounded by walls in a mid dark room. That's why you're sure to get the best experience and I only charge you per song. Mfit, DDP, MP3, Authoring, Metadata, revisions and QA/QC is or can be included for free. You pay in the end and after hearing everything in the best quality possible.
Q: What's your strongest skill?
A: Critical listening. Perhaps is the most obvious (and often overlooked) quality required of all mastering engineers that is the ability to listen. Mastering engineers must constantly evaluate the sound quality of individual sound sources in a mix and evaluate how these sound sources interrelate with each other. The ability to listen critically and make these judgements is a skill that must be learnt through trial and error and repeated practice.
Q: Which artist would you like to work with and why?
A: Hum... Probably Steven Wilson. I like is music a lot and I find it honest and sincere. But there's a problem, Steven doesn't have his music mastered since he claims that mastering is an unnecessary step...so that can be quite hard to achieve. hehehehe But I would like to prove him that no mastering is the same neither a mastering engineer sound the same. That's why he could send his mix to ten different mastering engineers and get, for sure, ten different approaches to it. Mastering is more aesthetic and creative than ever before. Using is words regarding producing and delivering a musical record at 96Khz of sample rate, "Even if the difference is 0.1 percent better, why wouldn't you do it?"
Q: What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
A: I started mastering professionaly with Sweet in 2011, its been 9 years and I have experienced more joy than I ever expected or imagined. Honestly, I hope the I can do this until I die because simply there is nothing else that I would rather be doing.