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Trance Forum  Forum  Production & Music Making - The Importance of Sound Design
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The Importance of Sound Design

mmoloch

Started Topics :  1
Posts :  5
Posted : Apr 11, 2016 16:15
"You guys certainly don't think I'm telling people that it's ok not to learn, right?"

Of course not... what I'm trying to say is that using loops, samples, presets already made and used is a way to produce music instead of creating music, for someone who started to produce music using loops, samples speeds up the production process but there is no learning, they may even be able to edit songs and albums... when you hear these albums for the first time they sound good, when you hear these albums for the second time you begin to realize that the beats are static, mathematicians and probably will not hear this album again.

How many hundreds of trance producers managed to edit an album and never managed to edit anything else?... mathematical formulas for making music might work once but rarely works twice.

Simon Postford could very easily edit one album per year but these albums would never be memorable nor have the originality and quality we expect from Simon.

@frisbeehead, just do not like the new psy tech and prog but one of my favorite albums is prog, Atmos head cleaner, after 16 years still sounds fresh, I am from Portugal, sun, outdoor parties and flying lol... but in the last 11 years only went to 5 "parties"... boom festival. I like Night Full Off, what currently consider to be dark but without static basslines and bpms below 145, 140 preferably.

frisbeehead
IsraTrance Junior Member
Started Topics :  10
Posts :  1350
Posted : Apr 11, 2016 20:55
Even though there's some points I can agree with, I honestly can't think of a single album or track that I didn't like due to reasons like that. I honestly don't think that a static beat is proof of the usage of loops, but rather speaks about lack of talent and bad production?

If you think about it, you'll know that I'm up to something here. I just can't think of any way you'd be able to pin point exactly that what the music is lacking is caused by any production choice in such a detailed way. I think you're just rationalizing your own taste and thoughts. Not necessarily in a good way either. Every thought we have that separates the good from the bad is just a line. We place it where we want it. And that usually speaks more about the person that drawn it, then the things on either side of it.

You also seem to underestimate what can be done with audio. Any piece of audio. Even if you place a loop on a track, it certainly doesn't have to end there. You can slice it, rearrange it, process parts with effects, reverse, so forth and so on. In the end, it's not even close to the original.

I'm going to reframe my question from an earlier post:

do you record your drums? do you program them all with synthesis? or do you use one-shoot samples? or a mixture of all these things?

what's the line for originality?

I think that's missing the point. No matter the source, the quality has much more to do with what's done with it, then if it came from a multi-mic setup of live drums, or just a drum kit. I personally don't care. If the snare came from some recorded real kit or a sample. I care about the music, the ideas you express with your tools, whatever tools. And so should you.

Simon could probably edit an album per year and still keep his quality if he was so inclined. I'm pretty sure about that. Any of those veterans has loads of talent and experience to match it.

I'm glad you mentioned him. I've caught him using well known samples (on early work) and presets from machines like sugar bytes effectrix and others on albuns. What about that? Does it byte his talent? Hell no!

So I guess this proves the point that one should really keep an open mind.

P.S. We have more in common then the other way. Also PT here, no so much partying as the old times, but I like music from all sub genres and I'm not sure what some of them even mean and couldn't care less. Is Night Full Off a thing or a typo? Anyway, keep in touch. Cheers
frisbeehead
IsraTrance Junior Member
Started Topics :  10
Posts :  1350
Posted : Apr 11, 2016 21:21
So to me, specially after recording, all audio is audio. It's absolutely plastic in the sense that one can do a TON of things to it in an almost infinite number of ways - and that's where creativity needs to be focused.

Sampling can actually open many doors in terms of production, it can bring some textures that do contrast a lot with the otherwise mainly electronic palete one tends to use in electronica.

The fact that there's plenty of genres that are based on that and that there's samplers revered in the same way as classic synths, is a clear testament to that - besides the fact that there's a lot of mysticism involved and hipsters have a thing about vintage...

Originality has more to do with what you express then the tools you use. Quality has to do with a mature understanding of the tools and a ton of work to make things as good as you possibly can.

I think rules, any rules, are meant to be broken and that an artist should keep an eye on his workflow and actively find ways to stir up things when needed, 'cause habits and routine are much more of a danger to creatives then the usage of loops and samples. Wiring your brain to suit your prejudice about working ethics will all but remove the chance to try things that can open new doors for you. Nothing is sacred. There's no sample police, besides those nasty algos being implemented on streaming sites due to unreasonable pressure from the greediest distribution networks on the face of this planet.

I say screw them. Most of them have climbed their way doing the exact same thing. Amen Break and the campaign (for which I've proudly donated, btw eheh) is proof of that. This is about being creative and not a saint, nor an exam to be a Richard Devine impersonator (even though more of them wouldn't hurt of course). I'd rather have surprising sounds made up with Casio toys then the same old same old thing.

So surprise people with music. No one cares if you use the Golden Voyager or some circuit bent Casio toy that makes weird versions of noise. Originality comes from finding your own voice and having the guts to stick with it despite the fact that most people like to listen to the same thing over and over and that's where the money is. Sample youtube videos if you have to. Sample Obama's speeches, sample Donald Trump and use effectrix presets on it. The possibilities are endless. It's only our minds and our narrow views and our tendency to want to copy our heroes that generates more of the same old same old music. Oh, and have some fun while doing it, please.
mmoloch

Started Topics :  1
Posts :  5
Posted : Apr 13, 2016 16:07
I work with a different style of music and begin to realize that they are two different worlds with different "rules", edm vs rock, it does not pass through my mind using samples I took from another song without being accused of plagiarism but it seems that is normal and accepted in edm.

An example, the first time I heard and saw the live act of Captain Hook I quite liked, a few weeks later when I returned home and went back to listening to Captain Hook it was terrible, extremely repetitive.

I associate bad production with lack of knowledge of the (virtual) instruments and tools used, even disliking an album you can tell if the album is well produced, if have something new and original.

The few kick drums I have been using made with zebra, learned to make them with the billy cosmisis tutorial, for percussion I use metal impacts but the idea is to record my own metal impacts but my priority is to build my home studio so I do not spend any money on samples, loops, presets. Using samples accelerates the production process, I lost one week to make the kicks I use when in one hour I could get 20 samples identical to what I synth, lost two weeks making bass's which together with the kick sounded bad, it took two weeks to understand that the kick and bass playing alone never sound right, just when I joined percussion and atmospheres is that the kick and bass complement each other, if I used samples and loops I would probably noticed it much faster.

I have thought that most of the big producers used samples now I have confirmation

Night Full Off is just my thing lol... is what I like to call the psy that is more stable, tension from beginning to end of a song, instead growing tension and then release.

Thanks for all the advices, it seems that I have to change my way of working to evolve faster, I have a idea that sound processing is a shortcut because with a synth I always can get the sound I want.
frisbeehead
IsraTrance Junior Member
Started Topics :  10
Posts :  1350
Posted : Apr 13, 2016 17:31
Most producers probably use samples but not in ways that can be thought of as plagiarism, but rather like broadening the scope of sources that can be used, or your typical voice sample from a movie or something during a breakdown and that kind of thing.

What I mean is that you don't put your "sound design hat" aside when working with samples, they can be thought of as something akin to the oscillator waveforms on a synth, just a source to get you going, but you still have all the sound shaping tools on your hands.

Time stretch, which was originally thought out for a very clear and practical purpose, has been used in creative ways from the beginning and there's some sounds we listen to on records that are achieved like this.

For example: you can time stretch a vocal, slice it in little pieces, rearrange it, use transposing or pitch shift automation, process bits of it with granular or ring shifters or whatever, send a few hits to other effects like delay or reverb. When you're done, there's probably not a single person on earth that would be able to identify the sample used. Maybe you used it 'cause it somehow still manages to keep a slight resemblance to something organic after all the mad twisting of it. See what I'm on about? Not just the speed, there's a whole world of sound design in mangling pieces of audio and samples.

Electronic Music makes use of all those tools. In fact, the DAW can be thought of as an instrument by itself

You're spending a LOT of time with your Kicks. I make my own kicks, but I do it on a track basis, listening in context with the Bass and try to move on quickly. If you spend a lot of time listening to just those two sounds, after a while you won't be able to tell what's best and what's not, because there's no reference - and that's worse if working with high volumes.

But please keep on doing your own Kicks and make sure you tweak them listening in context. A Kick sounds better and is easier to mix if tuned to the root note or other suitable/harmonic tone and you'll do it better and faster if you tweak it in context with the Bass and vice-versa. You're working on a combo, it's not how good they sound on their own, it's how good the combo feels and sounds.

Ok, last one. Processing is not a shortcut or a replacement for lazy sound design (or no sound design). Sound design does not end with the synthesizers, it incorporates all the tools at your disposal, all the things you have in your daw.

It's a good ethic to work on your sources to get them as close to what you want as possible, so that's a good thing. But it's quite another to presume that you can't twist things a lot further if you want to. Resampling your own material can open a lot of doors, because further processing allows you to completely change things in a lot of different ways - and they'll sound a LOT different from the original. Just remember, the daw is actually also a quite capable instrument

routingwithin
IsraTrance Junior Member

Started Topics :  46
Posts :  204
Posted : Apr 15, 2016 23:46

My main point on this subject was the following. To promote originality. To promote organic sounds .. and incorporate it into a track. I am talking about the rare think out of the box techniques. Like going outside and recording a power box humming with electricity.. the ocean .. nature etc.. you know. Following a trend and taking the easy way will place you between the thousands out there trying what you are trying .. its actually so simple to invent new ways to acomplish something.

Sitting infront of ur daw loading up a synth without being a musical genius is gonna be a struggle .. even recording a vocal sound that u make .. applying some morphing fx on it will get u further than choosing presets..thinking it will be great..

          " We are together in this matter you and I, closer to death, yes, closer than i'd like. How do you feel? - There can be no division in our actions, or everything is lost. What affects you affects me. "
frisbeehead
IsraTrance Junior Member
Started Topics :  10
Posts :  1350
Posted : Apr 17, 2016 04:26
I think we're on the same page here.

You portray originality as something that differs from following a trend, and that's true. But that raises a problem, which is that the audience - like has been mentioned previously - despite perhaps seeing itself as open-minded, actually demands more of the same thing, which they love and expect more of. That's currently, I'd argue, how things work on this psytrance scene.

That's not to say there's no exceptions, which there are, there's still projects that have their own unique style and touch. But there's plenty more of "standard" psy that either falls closer to some sub genre or the other filling the rest of the lineups. Among all this, there's also good and bad music. Inspired and just another one of those tracks. There's a bit of everything.

So I don't think that you can blame lack of talent or people being lazy and taking the easy way as the explanation for the lack of more adventurous (in lack of a better word) projects. I think it's actually the scene itself that's sort of settled with some generic style broad lines for the kind of party everyone wants and expects to have, or something within these lines.

I'm pretty sure that both the audiences and labels don't actually support people taking risks and going new directions. Also pretty sure most festival organizers wouldn't pick those artists, since it's mostly all about the money for them.

It's almost like, if you want real originality, stay away from any electronic music genre and do your own thing and see what happens. Or multiple projects can be the answer. I don't know.
frisbeehead
IsraTrance Junior Member
Started Topics :  10
Posts :  1350
Posted : Apr 17, 2016 04:34
I should say that I find that within the psy scene, the very underrated and neglected style which is ambience/chill out is probably where I find the most audacious sound design experiments to lie in and, perhaps, I'd dare say, even the most spectacular sound quality.

But I like a lot of so called standard psy. It's all about the feeling, I guess. Some tracks can take you to that special place. I find that if you can surprise people within a genre they know well, you have to be on to something special. I'm certainly among those that want my jaw to drop with special unheard of before psytrance. So if you guys could make it quick, please
vafl

Started Topics :  2
Posts :  36
Posted : Apr 22, 2016 02:34
Quote:

On 2016-04-05 06:10, Vermeee wrote:
there are many people in psytrance makin worldwide tours that has no clue what to do if u give them a init preset....




but they have the money to pay to someone who knows.
Vermeee
IsraTrance Full Member

Started Topics :  107
Posts :  1069
Posted : Apr 2, 2017 04:07
making psytrance is the same as making a band... u dont need to learn to build ur guitar to play the guitar....

synthesizers must be treated as an instrument.... the importance of learning sinthesis is not to make a psytrance track but if you are curious bout going deep into sinthesis or if you are ambitious and want to learn everything u deal with......

but to make psytrance in specific is much more important if u have in range some specific sounds that are like "psytrance instruments" , and some of those sounds can be realy easy in the sinthesis world but some are realy complex and even if u study a lot u hardly would arrive on those sounds....

so you are much more efficient puting things apart... to learn sinthesis is one different thing.... and u should do it in a different time... then when you are creating music u are not interested in learning sinthesis but to APPLY the sounds , the instruments that make characteristic of the genre you enjoy and want to create.
          
http://soundcloud.com/bgos
Vermeee
IsraTrance Full Member

Started Topics :  107
Posts :  1069
Posted : Apr 2, 2017 04:07
also i dont believe originality come from the source of the sound you are doing , like if the sound of the synthesis is original or not...

Using a band as example again....the guitar sounds the same for everybody but some artists at some times are able to bring something original.

also you dont need to be original to be awesome... many people are able to be awesome bein not original " tryin to copy some already existing genre and more specific an artist "

to be original is a very hard job and requires a lot of free time from the person to be able to experiment during times and times without success until at some point for some miracle and of course the big artist efforts.. it reaches a threshold that the experiment is considered acceptable...

again i believe this has nothing to do with the choice of sound but how the musical communication is built and its intention....The choice of sound is much more linked with the choice of genre.

and good music doesnt necessarily means being original, there are many artists that are not original but been copyin an already stablished genre and artist and still is able to be cool...

but yea i do believe that psytrance nowadays is lackin originality and not product ( the copy ) this s normal.. its a cycle.

          
http://soundcloud.com/bgos
Vermeee
IsraTrance Full Member

Started Topics :  107
Posts :  1069
Posted : Apr 2, 2017 04:18
Quote:

On 2016-04-22 02:34, vafl wrote:
Quote:

On 2016-04-05 06:10, Vermeee wrote:
there are many people in psytrance makin worldwide tours that has no clue what to do if u give them a init preset....




but they have the money to pay to someone who knows.



or you can ask friends... or artists u enjoy , who knows they are friendly?

also for sure u can buy.... for 10 to 20 euros/dolar u can get realy nice packs of presets around the internet very useful even from people inside psytrance... lucky we have options nowadays...           
http://soundcloud.com/bgos
Trance Forum  Forum  Production & Music Making - The Importance of Sound Design
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