Share your drum tactics in this thread.

Discussion of music production, audio, equipment and any related topics, either with or without Ableton Live
perplex
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Share your drum tactics in this thread.

Post by perplex » Thu May 19, 2011 1:42 am

So how do you guys get real nice kicks with thump that get the song bumpin? How do you make that snare sound so good?
Do you squash the dog crap out of them? Do you layer diff kicks, and then bring up the frequencies of certain ones?

Do you layer? Do you NY compress?, do you use a "special secret" plugin?

What say you community?

Schmidi
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Re: Share your drum tactics in this thread.

Post by Schmidi » Thu May 19, 2011 4:53 am

Well, I like a little "organic" feel to my kicks when I do techno, so I have been dropping an old funk break loop into impulse with the kick at the beginning of the loop, and then turning the decay down so that only the kick plus just a little bit of hats/tambourine/etc is next to the kick to give it a little extra rhythmic quality. I wouldn't say its a super pumping massive kick sound, but I like for things to not sound so electronic ALL the time.

Otherwise...compression never hurts!

cacti
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Re: Share your drum tactics in this thread.

Post by cacti » Thu May 19, 2011 5:22 am

Lightyear wrote:Well, I like a little "organic" feel to my kicks when I do techno, so I have been dropping an old funk break loop into impulse with the kick at the beginning of the loop, and then turning the decay down so that only the kick plus just a little bit of hats/tambourine/etc is next to the kick to give it a little extra rhythmic quality. I wouldn't say its a super pumping massive kick sound, but I like for things to not sound so electronic ALL the time.

Otherwise...compression never hurts!


over compression does. be careful.

Mister Natural
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Re: Share your drum tactics in this thread.

Post by Mister Natural » Thu May 19, 2011 6:00 am

couldn't be happier layering GURU (I know I'm old school: have Geist but haven't put enough time in to connect with it) over uTonic loops. A little EQ8, a little limiting, a little verb on the drums bus; we're off to the races

peace
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Cezband
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Re: Share your drum tactics in this thread.

Post by Cezband » Thu May 19, 2011 9:30 am

Layering and frequency tweaking are definitely good.
I find a little bit of saturation goes a long way too. Still trying different things out, though :)
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necho
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Re: Share your drum tactics in this thread.

Post by necho » Thu May 19, 2011 11:04 am

layers
envelopes
phase alignment
subtle distortion
subtle panning
subtle stereo widening
gating
gated reverb
using gates to quickly isolate hits in old sampled drum loops
recording percussive vocal sounds
layering bits of crackle and noise from old vinyl/tape
compression
grouping kick and snare channels and compressing them together
multiband processing
bus compression with a compressor that has an HPF in the detector circuit
switching off the grid and creating groove manually by nudging midi notes
automating/modulating envelope parameters - eg: the attack of a hat, the decay of a snare
bouncing a drum patterns, keeping the original pattern, mangling the fuck out of the bounced pattern, slicing it and layering the slices back over the original
duplicating clips in the session view, setting a different start point for each clip, setting quantize to 1/16 or 1/8, using Launchpad to jam out new rhythms
_________
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anybody human
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Re: Share your drum tactics in this thread.

Post by anybody human » Fri May 20, 2011 12:54 pm

necho wrote:layers
*envelopes
*phase alignment
*subtle distortion
*subtle panning
subtle stereo widening
gating
gated reverb
using gates to quickly isolate hits in old sampled drum loops
recording percussive vocal sounds
layering bits of crackle and noise from old vinyl/tape
compression
grouping kick and snare channels and compressing them together
multiband processing
*bus compression with a compressor that has an HPF in the detector circuit
*switching off the grid and creating groove manually by nudging midi notes
automating/modulating envelope parameters - eg: the attack of a hat, the decay of a snare
bouncing a drum patterns, keeping the original pattern, mangling the fuck out of the bounced pattern, slicing it and layering the slices back over the original
duplicating clips in the session view, setting a different start point for each clip, setting quantize to 1/16 or 1/8, using Launchpad to jam out new rhythms
That about covers it :wink:

I've taken the liberty to put an asterisk next to the techniques I currently use a lot. Others I've forgotten about and am excited to bring back into the fold, especially gated reverb and automating/modulating envelope parameters. There's a great Fever Ray song called Seven where it sounds like the snare decay is automated, love it. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kW972em87MU

I'd also add subtle stereo narrowing. Sometimes stereo samples like cymbals, or the cymbals of a sampled acoustic kit, can get too wide. It can become distracting and difficult to gel with the mix. Sometimes using a Utility to narrow the stereo spread a bit (say from 100% to around 73-77%) can help get the drums to sit right.

Cheers

condra
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Re: Share your drum tactics in this thread.

Post by condra » Fri May 20, 2011 2:01 pm

Depends on the genre/style/tempo.

A hard kitting kick, biting hat, and rasping snare, at 126 BPM might not always be what you want.

Use your ears and your eyes. Listen to how your samples sound, and have a look at the waveforms for density, clipping, etc.

There are lots of sample packs out there with drum sounds that are ready to use, "out of the box".

Don't attempt to layer up drum sounds unless you know what you're doing.

anybody human
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Re: Share your drum tactics in this thread.

Post by anybody human » Fri May 20, 2011 3:24 pm

Does anyone notice that a lot of samples (hats, snares etc.) are a little (half step maybe) flat in the left channel and a little sharp in the right channel? Ive noticed it with Wave Alchemy samples and among others. This makes keeping things in tune while panning difficult, while panning hi hats for example. How do you guys deal with this?

simonlb
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Re: Share your drum tactics in this thread.

Post by simonlb » Fri May 20, 2011 3:41 pm

condra wrote:Don't attempt to layer up drum sounds unless you know what you're doing.
I've always found layering drums to be one of these bits of production advice rhetoric. Like everything else it can be useful in certain situations but it's not the be all and end all of phat drums, I've generally gotten by without it.

I'm still getting there with my drum tactics but appropriate EQing, using good sounds in the first place and NY compression (sometimes it really helps, sometimes it doesn't, seems to depend on the track) are working for me. Necho's list has given me plenty to try though :)

X_Soda
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Re: Share your drum tactics in this thread.

Post by X_Soda » Fri May 20, 2011 4:07 pm

Anyone want to explain these gating/gated reverb techniques to me?

beats me
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Re: Share your drum tactics in this thread.

Post by beats me » Fri May 20, 2011 4:41 pm

I put a kick on each quarter note in the bar so you know I’m serious about my tracks.

Then I drop in the holy hi-hat pattern that sounds like JE-sus-JE-sus-JE-sus-JE-sus. This hypnotizes the crowd with it’s divine originality.

Then I drop a bit crushed piccolo snare on the 2 and the 4, BUT offset it by a 1/324 note. This is in no way noticeable but I know I did it.

For variety I assign an LFO to the channel changing toggle on my TV remote and limit the channel range to only those between The Lifetime Network and VH1 West.

As a reference I toss a Vengeance House beat loop into a clip to compare.

Lastly, I toss out the beat I created and use the Vengeance loop because I realize there’s no glory in creating an original House beat loop and it was a huge waste of time.

Hope that helps.

kev herb
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Re: Share your drum tactics in this thread.

Post by kev herb » Fri May 20, 2011 4:59 pm

beats me wrote:I put a kick on each quarter note in the bar so you know I’m serious about my tracks.

Then I drop in the holy hi-hat pattern that sounds like JE-sus-JE-sus-JE-sus-JE-sus. This hypnotizes the crowd with it’s divine originality.

Then I drop a bit crushed piccolo snare on the 2 and the 4, BUT offset it by a 1/324 note. This is in no way noticeable but I know I did it.

For variety I assign an LFO to the channel changing toggle on my TV remote and limit the channel range to only those between The Lifetime Network and VH1 West.

As a reference I toss a Vengeance House beat loop into a clip to compare.

Lastly, I toss out the beat I created and use the Vengeance loop because I realize there’s no glory in creating an original House beat loop and it was a huge waste of time.

Hope that helps.
im detecting some animosity towards house music maybe :?:
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beats me
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Re: Share your drum tactics in this thread.

Post by beats me » Fri May 20, 2011 5:12 pm

kev herb wrote:
beats me wrote:I put a kick on each quarter note in the bar so you know I’m serious about my tracks.

Then I drop in the holy hi-hat pattern that sounds like JE-sus-JE-sus-JE-sus-JE-sus. This hypnotizes the crowd with it’s divine originality.

Then I drop a bit crushed piccolo snare on the 2 and the 4, BUT offset it by a 1/324 note. This is in no way noticeable but I know I did it.

For variety I assign an LFO to the channel changing toggle on my TV remote and limit the channel range to only those between The Lifetime Network and VH1 West.

As a reference I toss a Vengeance House beat loop into a clip to compare.

Lastly, I toss out the beat I created and use the Vengeance loop because I realize there’s no glory in creating an original House beat loop and it was a huge waste of time.

Hope that helps.
im detecting some animosity towards house music maybe :?:

Actually I like House music.

I’m just poking fun at the over analysis of the most predictable and done to death beat history has seen thus far.

anybody human
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Re: Share your drum tactics in this thread.

Post by anybody human » Fri May 20, 2011 10:31 pm

House beats? Wha? Huh?

No thoughts on stereo drum samples being sharp on one side & flat on the other? Crickets...

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