use of chords.. help?

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Postby Zkeeto » Fri Mar 09, 2012 6:26 pm

so im starting to wrap my head around the technical side of chords, modes, progressions and all that fun stuff. My question is this, do you guys use chords with your basslines? to me doing this adds a bit more dynamics than all the single notes and kinda jumbles the sound up. or do you just use them for melodies, or atmosperic sounds that are pushed back in the mix for feeling? or perhaps both? im just wondering how to go about using them.

I havent had time to experiment with this lately so im just askin you kind folks what your approach on this issue is. thanks all
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Postby Hircine » Fri Mar 09, 2012 6:28 pm

basslines should be monophonic I guess.
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Postby Elkie » Fri Mar 09, 2012 6:33 pm

Basslines are almost always single notes because bas you say, using chords tends to "jumble" them up and make the lows sound messy, atonal and flabby, especially on sound that are already quite rich.

Leads also tend to be single notes, but not always!
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Postby Zkeeto » Fri Mar 09, 2012 6:33 pm

now im pretty sure mono means one right? so in your opinion just have the bass be single notes? thats what i think to
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Postby dj nation » Fri Mar 09, 2012 6:40 pm

yeye mono means one, i love using chords actually, i try and use them whenever i can but it really depends on what im doing. like in this track im doing right now ive used chords for atmospheric sounds in the background. and one chord quite heavily processed every now and then. i guess what im trying to say is i never use chords in bass or lead. always a lil bit in the middle.
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Postby Zkeeto » Fri Mar 09, 2012 6:44 pm

dj nation wrote:yeye mono means one, i love using chords actually, i try and use them whenever i can but it really depends on what im doing. like in this track im doing right now ive used chords for atmospheric sounds in the background. and one chord quite heavily processed every now and then. i guess what im trying to say is i never use chords in bass or lead. always a lil bit in the middle.


i see. so generally just atmosperic stuff? I think ide like to use chords in leads so the listener can hear it better than in just atmosperic stuff. to create more energy i guess. tho it might just depend on the song or the lead itself whatever it may be
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Postby blinx » Fri Mar 09, 2012 6:45 pm

you dont play full chords with a basss, well unless your victor wooten lol

Seriously though in dubstep you will only be using single notes at a time. THOUGH you can use the chords to help write your bass riffs and make them sound more expressive with out cluttering or being polyphonic. Like inverting chords and all kinds of other music theory voodoo lol (i am not a music theory nut at all). Or using chordal movements to help walk or tranistion between your long held out tones, i think these are refered to as passing tones.

any way here link i found that may help explain bass and chord usage (it talks about bass guitar but the theory is applicable to synth and dubstep stuff too a bassline is still a bassline just depend what/who is playing it).
http://www.studybass.com/lessons/bass-chord-patterns/about-bass-chord-patterns/
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Postby Zkeeto » Fri Mar 09, 2012 6:51 pm

aight thanks bruv
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Postby Sonika » Fri Mar 09, 2012 6:53 pm

I like to use chords in the higher register, but it seems that they mostly sound muddy when using them in the lower register with bass...I'd be interested to hear someone using bass chords well, though.
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Postby blinx » Fri Mar 09, 2012 6:59 pm

Analogue, a bass guitar become essential a guitar the furhter up the register you go so chords work in that freq range.

Synth, a bass tone (sine wave) become a lead/whistley/bell tone in a higher register which would easily play chords.
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Postby Fabricator » Fri Mar 09, 2012 9:36 pm

Lately, one could say I've been experimenting with chords... Though I've really been experimenting with intervals within a synth patch...

If you listen to a lot of the sounds Noisia, Misanthop, and Phace have been toying with over the past year or two, and 16BIT more recently, it sounds to me like they've been making some interesting synth patches with melodic upper intervals. For instance, playing with the fifth above the first octave register would have OSC1 at root, 0, and OSC2 at +19.00. Experiment with different intervals on your SYNTH bass, not your BASS bass... i.e. Don't ever fuck with your sine, you want that mono. I'm talking about your 120HZ+ synth bass that might be a lead or some wobble shit.

If that's not sounding right, try modulating the amp of the upper interval. When you pluck a guitar string, part of what defines that overall timbre, which distinguishes it from, say, a piano, are the overtones that increase in amplitude overtime. Try thinking about that when you play with the amp envelope of that upper interval, or overtone, so that it is separate from the amp envelope of the root tone.

Just a thought. This has produced some new and interesting sounds for me.
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Postby SoundNuisance » Fri Mar 09, 2012 9:45 pm

I agree with the above poster. Just to add though. Some sub bass chords can sound nice, but they tend to sound bad most of the times. Also you can do a chord for you mid-range bass (assuming that is what you are talking about of course) Almost every single mid-range dubstep bass sound is layered. So if you wanted to, you could but each sound a different note. For example, 1 saw wave the rote note. Another saw wave the fifth of the root note. Then another the minor 3rd. Then you can add a seventh to get in all that "jazz". If you don't know much theory, an example would be this:

Osc 1: A
Osc 2: C
Osc 3: E
Osc 4: G
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Postby blinx » Fri Mar 09, 2012 9:46 pm

So what your doing is creating a Power chord synth patch for your midrange bass? interesting. YOu could even add the octave above that fifth then and really be power chordy lol. << thats to the poster who just adds the fifth. Adding/making jazzed up chords is possible too... get your neuro funk jazz session on mang. lol
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Postby SoundNuisance » Fri Mar 09, 2012 10:16 pm

^You are a guitarist I am assuming :P Not to be rude, I didn't say add just the fifth. Re-read the post. Anyways, I forgot to add a very important note. GO EASY ON THE DISTORTION. You really don't want a mess of static and then not be able to hear the notes. Unless that is what you are going for......................
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Postby e-motion » Fri Mar 09, 2012 10:32 pm

Yeah, chords don't work on heavy synths, it will sound utter shit. You need to use simple patches.

My experience with chords in basses is... one regular chord patch (the ones you make for the melodic parts) playing a short chord or two in the middle of a heavy bass can make wonders :mrgreen:
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Postby blinx » Fri Mar 09, 2012 10:37 pm

@ SoundNuisance - my power chord reference was to the first post talking about adding the fifth. not yours about adding/voicing full chords which also mentioned the fifth. And i do come from studying a guitar as my first serious endeavour into music, and i started guitar in the late 90s so power chord pop punk progressions will be engrained in my brain for probably the rest of my life lol that and the intro to wish you where here by floyd and crazy train lol
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Postby SoundNuisance » Sat Mar 10, 2012 4:42 pm

@blinx Haha. Sorry for accusing you man.
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Postby Zkeeto » Sat Mar 10, 2012 6:33 pm

thx guys ya i kinda figured chords in basslines would get a bit jumbled but i got a nice atmospheric chord progression goin on in one of my tunes. could anyone throw down some scales that go good in dubstep and glitchhop? I mostly use f minor and f#minor but jus curious what everyone else is doin. cheers and beers
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Postby Puncture » Sun Mar 11, 2012 8:48 am

Zkeeto wrote:thx guys ya i kinda figured chords in basslines would get a bit jumbled but i got a nice atmospheric chord progression goin on in one of my tunes. could anyone throw down some scales that go good in dubstep and glitchhop? I mostly use f minor and f#minor but jus curious what everyone else is doin. cheers and beers


F# has quickly become a favourite of mine. You can get some deep dark melodies out of there.
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Postby Zkeeto » Sun Mar 11, 2012 6:40 pm

yeah for sure its my favorite to
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