My tunes just feel lacking.

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Gnarbage
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My tunes just feel lacking.

Post by Gnarbage » Thu Oct 14, 2010 3:40 am

My tunes really feel like they lack sustenance. At certain parts they will feel empty. I'm just looking for some tips or tricks to add that extra oomph to my tracks.

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kaiori breathe
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Re: My tunes just feel lacking.

Post by kaiori breathe » Thu Oct 14, 2010 3:45 am

Layering the same sounds vocalised by different instruments can help.

Like if I have a chord progression that goes C Major, E minor, D Major, D major, I'll play it on the piano, but I won't just play one static chord each bar, I'll maybe split the chord so the top note and the bottom note play together on the first 2 beats then the middle plays on the last 2 beats in the bar, and maybe I'd have a pad behind that, and a sampled string section playing the same chords spread out over a couple of octaves, then I'll have lots of little things, like twinkling reversed leads over the top, then you have your bass, maybe your mid bass, your drums, it should just fill itself out really...

I dunno if that helps :S

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flippo
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Re: My tunes just feel lacking.

Post by flippo » Thu Oct 14, 2010 4:18 am

Gnarbage wrote: sustenance
:lol:

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amphibian
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Re: My tunes just feel lacking.

Post by amphibian » Thu Oct 14, 2010 4:21 am

Gnarbage wrote:My tunes really feel like they lack sustenance. At certain parts they will feel empty. I'm just looking for some tips or tricks to add that extra oomph to my tracks.
When starting out I think this is one of the hardest things to come to grips with. Best thing you can do imo - is create a whole stack of different instruments (i start with about 5-6) and get your tune working between these different instruments. Then, layer these with different synths that hit the same note but are an octave or two below. This is how basslines come together as well. Also, lots of reverb and delays to really help pad out a track :)

Good luck!
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grooki
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Re: My tunes just feel lacking.

Post by grooki » Thu Oct 14, 2010 5:07 am

flippo wrote:
Gnarbage wrote: sustenance
:lol:
eat more veggies?

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Re: My tunes just feel lacking.

Post by AllNightDayDream » Thu Oct 14, 2010 5:46 am

Steady diet of ham

Grimace_dubs
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Re: My tunes just feel lacking.

Post by Grimace_dubs » Thu Oct 14, 2010 5:47 am

Something I've found is uplifters, downlifters etc can make a difference also!

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lowpass
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Re: My tunes just feel lacking.

Post by lowpass » Thu Oct 14, 2010 6:05 am

I feel the main source of power comes mainly from the drums and their interaction with the bass. Get these two elements right and working together (instead of against each other) and this will provide a solid starting block.

From there as mentioned little incidentals, FX, Rises etc will help fill out the track and keep things moving along without getting boring.

DO NOT underestimate the use of delay's and really long reverb's on background sounds. Not only do they push them further back in the mix which gives you a more 3 dimensional sound but you also help fill out the 'gaps' as it were.

Finally A/B, A/B, A/B!

Bring in a track of a similar style that you like, drag it into your DAW and match it so the same volume as the rest of the track (Make sure no processing is on the master as it will affect this reference track.) And listen to see what differentiates it form yours. is the snare brighter on their track? is the bass more compressed than yours? do your hihats sound too dry in comparison.

Obviously you don't want to copy someone's mix but it's a good starting point to build from if you are unsure of your own.

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paravrais
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Re: My tunes just feel lacking.

Post by paravrais » Thu Oct 14, 2010 2:28 pm

I know this isn't exactly helpful but time is the best advice I can really give :\ just experiment, make lots of tunes and over time it will come to you.

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hasezwei
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Re: My tunes just feel lacking.

Post by hasezwei » Thu Oct 14, 2010 2:42 pm

ambience, ambience, ambience. have shit like wind blowing or footsteps or something with fuckloads of reverb, so much reverb that it's just a layer of sound and then have it really quiet, barely noticeable. instant depth for your tune.

bonus points for putting as much detail in that background layer as into your drums. by automating the volume and changing for example your reverb parameters or adding some other really slight effects can give life to your track, even when all the other instruments are silent.

having sounds like a zippo clicking or a car door closing on certain moments in the tune "hiding" behind a drumhit can really change stuff. it's all about the listener not really noticing the change, just feeling it.
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Ongelegen
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Re: My tunes just feel lacking.

Post by Ongelegen » Thu Oct 14, 2010 3:04 pm

paravrais wrote:I know this isn't exactly helpful but time is the best advice I can really give :\ just experiment, make lots of tunes and over time it will come to you.
:z:

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wormcode
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Re: My tunes just feel lacking.

Post by wormcode » Thu Oct 14, 2010 3:07 pm

Gnarbage wrote:My tunes really feel like they lack sustenance. At certain parts they will feel empty. I'm just looking for some tips or tricks to add that extra oomph to my tracks.
Compared to what? If it's dubstep, remember it's OK if it's stripped down and somewhat bare. That was the original point of dubstep, hence the name, but these days it doesn't seem as common. If you want more stuff going on in the tune, fair enough, but remember there doesn't have to be. I would say only add something if it actually adds to the tune. Don't just add sounds for the sake of adding more sounds. It's often the "empty" tunes that sound the fattest. Just concentrate on getting the elements you're using to work together and compliment each other in the right way. There's really no tricks to that, it just comes in time. One thing that is important is to get each element to sound fat and bright on its own. Proper sound selection is 50% of it.

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krispy
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Re: My tunes just feel lacking.

Post by krispy » Thu Oct 14, 2010 3:21 pm

Gnarbage wrote:My tunes really feel like they lack sustenance. At certain parts they will feel empty. I'm just looking for some tips or tricks to add that extra oomph to my tracks.
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flippo
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Re: My tunes just feel lacking.

Post by flippo » Fri Oct 15, 2010 6:12 am

grooki wrote:
flippo wrote:
Gnarbage wrote: sustenance
:lol:
eat more veggies?
maybe a lucozade?

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legend4ry
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Re: My tunes just feel lacking.

Post by legend4ry » Fri Oct 15, 2010 7:10 am

all jokes aside.

So basically what you're saying is that you get bored halfway through a track and give up with it?


I'm sorry but theres no magical way to give your track something more other than writing more for it. Thats the whole point of writing music, turning silence into something whats pleasurable to the ear for 'x' amount of time...If its not a pleasure to listen to then add more/change stuff till it is.
:-D

All you need to write a great dubstep track is 5-6 strong 16 bar loops and structure them so it don't get to repetitive, don't over complicate things.
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CUMDOWN
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Re: My tunes just feel lacking.

Post by CUMDOWN » Fri Oct 15, 2010 1:21 pm

story of every newish producers life?

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B-Frank
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Re: My tunes just feel lacking.

Post by B-Frank » Fri Oct 15, 2010 1:34 pm

Haven't read through the thread as I have a bit of a headache. :P
...But as I am sure most above have said, reverb & delay are your friends.
Filling tunes out with hi-hats can do nicely too. I used to have this exact same problem but back before i learned the art of eq'ing and hi/low passing i found i could fit more sounds into a mix without it getting muddy. Sometimes its not just enough to be good musically, making good (electronic) music does require technical understanding.
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