Join Over 20,000 Producers.

Subscribe to my newsletter for exclusive tips, special discounts, & course announcements sent directly to your inbox.

object(WP_Query)#278 (51) { ["query"]=> array(1) { ["category_name"]=> string(4) "blog" } ["query_vars"]=> array(64) { ["category_name"]=> string(4) "blog" ["error"]=> string(0) "" ["m"]=> string(0) "" ["p"]=> int(0) ["post_parent"]=> string(0) "" ["subpost"]=> string(0) "" ["subpost_id"]=> string(0) "" ["attachment"]=> string(0) "" ["attachment_id"]=> int(0) ["name"]=> string(0) "" ["static"]=> string(0) "" ["pagename"]=> string(0) "" ["page_id"]=> int(0) ["second"]=> string(0) "" ["minute"]=> string(0) "" ["hour"]=> string(0) "" ["day"]=> int(0) ["monthnum"]=> int(0) ["year"]=> int(0) ["w"]=> int(0) ["tag"]=> string(0) "" ["cat"]=> int(2) ["tag_id"]=> string(0) "" ["author"]=> string(0) "" ["author_name"]=> string(0) "" ["feed"]=> string(0) "" ["tb"]=> string(0) "" ["paged"]=> int(0) ["meta_key"]=> string(0) "" ["meta_value"]=> string(0) "" ["preview"]=> string(0) "" ["s"]=> string(0) "" ["sentence"]=> string(0) "" ["title"]=> string(0) "" ["fields"]=> string(0) "" ["menu_order"]=> string(0) "" ["embed"]=> string(0) "" ["category__in"]=> array(0) { } ["category__not_in"]=> array(0) { } ["category__and"]=> array(0) { } ["post__in"]=> array(0) { } ["post__not_in"]=> array(0) { } ["post_name__in"]=> array(0) { } ["tag__in"]=> array(0) { } ["tag__not_in"]=> array(0) { } ["tag__and"]=> array(0) { } ["tag_slug__in"]=> array(0) { } ["tag_slug__and"]=> array(0) { } ["post_parent__in"]=> array(0) { } ["post_parent__not_in"]=> array(0) { } ["author__in"]=> array(0) { } ["author__not_in"]=> array(0) { } ["ignore_sticky_posts"]=> bool(false) ["suppress_filters"]=> bool(false) ["cache_results"]=> bool(true) ["update_post_term_cache"]=> bool(true) ["lazy_load_term_meta"]=> bool(true) ["update_post_meta_cache"]=> bool(true) ["post_type"]=> string(0) "" ["posts_per_page"]=> int(10) ["nopaging"]=> bool(false) ["comments_per_page"]=> string(2) "50" ["no_found_rows"]=> bool(false) ["order"]=> string(4) "DESC" } ["tax_query"]=> object(WP_Tax_Query)#887 (6) { ["queries"]=> array(1) { [0]=> array(5) { ["taxonomy"]=> string(8) "category" ["terms"]=> array(1) { [0]=> string(4) "blog" } ["field"]=> string(4) "slug" ["operator"]=> string(2) "IN" ["include_children"]=> bool(true) } } ["relation"]=> string(3) "AND" ["table_aliases":protected]=> array(1) { [0]=> string(23) "wphb_term_relationships" } ["queried_terms"]=> array(1) { ["category"]=> array(2) { ["terms"]=> array(1) { [0]=> string(4) "blog" } ["field"]=> string(4) "slug" } } ["primary_table"]=> string(10) "wphb_posts" ["primary_id_column"]=> string(2) "ID" } ["meta_query"]=> object(WP_Meta_Query)#888 (9) { ["queries"]=> array(0) { } ["relation"]=> NULL ["meta_table"]=> NULL ["meta_id_column"]=> NULL ["primary_table"]=> NULL ["primary_id_column"]=> NULL ["table_aliases":protected]=> array(0) { } ["clauses":protected]=> array(0) { } ["has_or_relation":protected]=> bool(false) } ["date_query"]=> bool(false) ["queried_object"]=> object(WP_Term)#956 (16) { ["term_id"]=> int(2) ["name"]=> string(4) "Blog" ["slug"]=> string(4) "blog" ["term_group"]=> int(0) ["term_taxonomy_id"]=> int(2) ["taxonomy"]=> string(8) "category" ["description"]=> string(0) "" ["parent"]=> int(0) ["count"]=> int(3) ["filter"]=> string(3) "raw" ["cat_ID"]=> int(2) ["category_count"]=> int(3) ["category_description"]=> string(0) "" ["cat_name"]=> string(4) "Blog" ["category_nicename"]=> string(4) "blog" ["category_parent"]=> int(0) } ["queried_object_id"]=> int(2) ["request"]=> string(362) "SELECT SQL_CALC_FOUND_ROWS wphb_posts.ID FROM wphb_posts LEFT JOIN wphb_term_relationships ON (wphb_posts.ID = wphb_term_relationships.object_id) WHERE 1=1 AND ( wphb_term_relationships.term_taxonomy_id IN (2) ) AND wphb_posts.post_type = 'post' AND (wphb_posts.post_status = 'publish') GROUP BY wphb_posts.ID ORDER BY wphb_posts.post_date DESC LIMIT 0, 10" ["posts"]=> &array(3) { [0]=> object(WP_Post)#894 (24) { ["ID"]=> int(894) ["post_author"]=> string(1) "2" ["post_date"]=> string(19) "2016-12-14 19:47:34" ["post_date_gmt"]=> string(19) "2016-12-14 19:47:34" ["post_content"]=> string(7399) "

Using reverse techniques in your music is a great way to add details, to add intricacies, to add energy and movement, or even just a splash of creativity.

Personally, I am a HUGE fan of using reverse sounds in my music. Again, I just see it as a cool way to put a personal spin on a melody, and on top of that, reverses just sound cool.

#1 Creating Reverse Melodies - 0:50

Hyperbits - Reverse Midi

Here is a cool and creative way to create reverse melodies in Logic X.

Steps:
  1. Duplicate your melody so we aren't editing the original.
  2. Go to your piano roll, select your midi, go to functions, midi transform, and select reverse position.
  3. Extend your region or tweak the reverse position export settings.
  4. Drag new midi in place of original melody.
  5. Bounce new midi in place, or export to audio
  6. Reverse the bounced or printed audio (this give your your original melody played in reverse)

Creative Options on what you can do with the reversed melodies:

  • Just play it as is.
  • Depending upon your sound design or sound choice, this could be pretty cool on its own. Sometimes less is more.

  • Play both your original melody and reverse melody at the same time.
  • This can get super cluttered easily - just be careful as this technique usually only works with simplistic, minimal and subtle melodies.

  • Cut up the reverse melody.
  • The answer to the previous question of cluttering your melody is to cut up your reverses. If you select tasteful, fewer instances of the reverse, the reverse melody paired with the original might sound really special.

  • Use an auto-panner
  • Sometimes I like to trigger an auto-panner to move with the reverse melody cuts, that way, each reverse transient is playing in a different part of the stereo spectrum - and that is beyond cool.

    #2 Reverse Reverb with Space Designer - 5:15

    Hyperbits - Reverse Reverb

    Instead of manually printing your reverb tails and reversing them, sometimes the reverse button in Logic's Space Designer is a cool way to spark some creative atmospheres and cool tonal differences in your melody.

    Again, this is a very easy trick, but something it can be both super powerful and subtle at the same time.

    #3 Mapping Reverses to a Sampler - 0:50

    Hyperbits - Reverse Sample Mapping

    Mapping audio to a sampler allows you to manipulate ANY sample you have on your computer as if it was a synth.

    We’re going to do that with reverse sounds using a sample downloaded off Splice, from the Bright Lights vocal pack.

    Steps:
    1. Right click on sample and select Convert to Sampler Track.
    2. Select the note of the sample to stay in key.
    3. Hit edit.
    4. Select reverse on the right hand side of the editor
    5. Increase your high and low key range.

    Try to stay within an octave of the original sound, as the further you go from the original the more degraded the audio gets, and you also start running into timing issues.

    Beyond that though - if you want to play a sound with both normal forward samples and reverse samples, I would just suggest creating two sampler instruments - but if you have to keep it all in one track, reference the video from this post and you can map the editor differently which gives you this control of each individual note.

    #4 Reverse Reverb with Stereo Movement - 7:45

    Hyperbits Reverse Reverb with Stereo Movement

    Most producers are familiar with the reverse reverb trick. It's a great way to introduce an important lead or prominent sound in the mix.

    Commonly, it's done with vocals, but it can also be done with lead synths, piano chords, big bass sounds - really anything that you want to introduce via a long reversed reverb tail.

    This is the reverse reverb trick with a bit of swagger by introducing movement.

    Steps:
    1. Put a reverb on the beginning of any audio
    2. Increase the decay time to around 8-15 seconds
    3. Bounce in place or export the audio
    4. Reverse the printed audio
    5. Clean up any pops or abrupt tails
    6. Place a tremolo plugin on the reverse channel
    7. Automate the rate to slowly increase over the life of the reverse reverb

    This means that, depending on the depth, this rate moves left and right across the stereo spectrum - and by automating the rate - the reverse audio will start off slowly moving across the stereo spectrum, and automate to move faster and faster.

    Again, just a really simple but cool trick to get out of doing things the same old way all the time.

    #5 Adding Groove & Energy with Reverses - 10:17

    Hyperbits - Reverses for Energy

    Sometimes I view composing and writing on a digital computer really, as just an effort to humanize everything as much as possible. How can we make what we write digitally on a computer sound more human, more real, and less perfect.

    Now there are tons of things we can do to accomplish that - but one little thing I've noticed?

    Use reverses.

    You’re left with a melody that feels like it spits itself out towards the listener - it's got movement. It's more dynamic, And it just sounds more alive. And 99% of the time - that is a very, very good thing.

    Make sure to reference the video for more examples of this technique.

    " ["post_title"]=> string(48) "5 Creative Composition Techniques Using Reverses" ["post_excerpt"]=> string(0) "" ["post_status"]=> string(7) "publish" ["comment_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["ping_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["post_password"]=> string(0) "" ["post_name"]=> string(48) "5-creative-composition-techniques-using-reverses" ["to_ping"]=> string(0) "" ["pinged"]=> string(0) "" ["post_modified"]=> string(19) "2016-12-14 19:47:34" ["post_modified_gmt"]=> string(19) "2016-12-14 19:47:34" ["post_content_filtered"]=> string(0) "" ["post_parent"]=> int(0) ["guid"]=> string(32) "http://hyperbitsmusic.com/?p=894" ["menu_order"]=> int(0) ["post_type"]=> string(4) "post" ["post_mime_type"]=> string(0) "" ["comment_count"]=> string(1) "0" ["filter"]=> string(3) "raw" } [1]=> object(WP_Post)#893 (24) { ["ID"]=> int(725) ["post_author"]=> string(1) "2" ["post_date"]=> string(19) "2016-09-22 14:12:02" ["post_date_gmt"]=> string(19) "2016-09-22 14:12:02" ["post_content"]=> string(10698) "

    Finishing music is hard.

    In fact, I would argue it's the most difficult aspect of the creative process. It's just a lot easier to endlessly tweak your music than it is to confidently put the finishing touches on a song and release it out into the world.

    I get that. Not only in my own music, but in my student's music as well.

    In teaching my masterclass over the past year or so, I realized that a lot of upcoming producers just didn't really have a good sense for when their song was actually finished.

    And look, in reality, a song is never done until you say it is, but that can get you in trouble because technically, you could keep tweaking forever.

    So as I sat down to work out this issue, I realized that there are certain steps that I take 9 times out 10 when finishing music. That's where this checklist was born. Because that endless tweaking-adjusting-refining-modifying cycle needs to stop right now.

    Nothing - and I mean nothing - is more detrimental to your growth as a music producer than getting in the habit of NOT finishing your music.

    That said, download the FREE 8-step finishing checklist here, or continue reading for some further explanations.

    hyperbits-8-step-finishing-checklist-image

    1. The 8-Bar Check

    This was one of the first techniques I was taught as a brand new producer and continues to be one of the most valuable things I've ever learned in the music production space.

    The concept is simple: listen to your track in stages of 8 bars, and make sure that something happens. The goal is to create forward momentum and interest in the listener's ears - but this can be achieved in MANY forms.

    This could mean:
    • Adding loops
    • Removing loops
    • Adding a tonal perc
    • Removing a tonal perc
    • Bringing in the bass
    • Taking away the bass
    • Bringing in the vocals
    • Sustaining a pad
    • Bringing in an orchestral section
    • Anything you want...

    In reality, I could go on forever, right? Once you've created a memorable chord progression and/or melody, there are literally unlimited options as to what you can do to create and maintain interest.

    The point is simply this: every 8 bars, something needs to happen. End of story.

    Even if you have a good composition, if nothing changes, you run the risk of creating a stagnant, predictable, and boring track. Plus, music production is WAY too hard to let this be your downfall.

    2. The Soloing Technique

    The Soloing Technique is awesome. This is something I started doing naturally in the studio over time to try to uncover problems within my mix-downs.

    Again, this is fairly straight forward, but the benefits are tremendous. Next time you are working with a full section in your mix (like a drop), go ahead and loop the measure and slowly bring in ONE element at a time.

    Start with the kick, and then:
    • Bring in a drum element
    • Bring in another drum element
    • Bring in a synth lead
    • Bring in a synth chord
    • Bring in the sub bass
    • Bring in the mid-range bass
    • And so on....

    And what you'll find is that at one point or another, your mix will start to suck. And when your mix starts to suck, that's awesome. That's what needs to get addressed. The whole point of this exercise is to uncover exactly what isn't working in your mix.

    For example, maybe when you added those 4-to-the-floor claps, all the cymbals got lost, or maybe the kick drum got swallowed. Or the vocal got drowned out.

    The point here is that when you bring in one element at a time, you uncover that exact moment when something went wrong in your mix. And if you know when that moment occurs, you can easily jump into your mix, address the problem and move on.

    3. The Muting Technique

    Another amazing strategy to incorporate into your workflow and something I've spoken extensively about in my 8-Week Masterclass, but much like the soloing technique, the muting technique allows you to play everything at once, while slowly muting one element at a time. The goal here is to identify what is unnecessary to the mix.

    For example, if you just muted a synth layer in your breakdown, but couldn't here a difference in the overall mix, just cut away that layer.

    This technique isn't for suckers - be ruthless about cutting.

    If it isn't contributing to your mix and you can't even hear it's contribution, then it's just sucking away headroom. And when it comes to mastering and getting your tracks loud, you will need all that headroom.

    So again, be ruthless - and cut those damn layers that you don't actually need.

    4. The Mono Check

    I'm not a huge proponent on mixing in mono but it's a good idea to check in mono once in a while. Most commercial stereos and club systems are in stereo these days, but if your mix makes it to TV or get's played on some older club system you'll just want to make sure it sounds good.

    It's difficult to anticipate how a mix would sound bad in mono in advance, but some things I've uncovered in the past are mostly a result of losing some side information.

    Some examples would include when:
    • The kick is too loud
    • The lead is too loud
    • A secondary melody gets lost
    • Strings/pads get drowned out
    • Percussion gets lost

    Dealing with the issues a mono mix can create is fairly simple.

    Sometimes, if you switch your mix into mono, this is a great time to pan certain sounds and elements in order to create space in a mix.

    And from there, if the sound pops in mono, you have found a sweet spot, or in other words, a great stereo slot or position for that individual sound.

    5. RMS Metering Check

    It's very difficult to only write a few sentences about RMS metering, but the basic premise here is that you can compare your overall average loudness to other commercial tracks.

    That's what RMS is (again, without getting too technical). It's the average loudness of your track.

    And the fact that there are awesome FREE plugins (like Voxengo Span) out there means we have no excuse not to learn from fully finished, professional sounding tracks.

    That said, it's a great idea to check this towards the end of your production as an additional measure of loudness to compliment the most important tool: your ears.

    6. Commercial Stereo Check

    Part of the beauty of using studio monitor speakers is that they have an extremely flat sound - meaning if your track sounds good on monitors, it will most likely sound good everywhere else. Unfortunetely, it just isn't THAT simple.

    So every time you finish a track, make sure to take a listen on iPhone speakers, car stereos, club systems, iPod docking stations, etc - literally ANYWHERE you can listen will help creating the best possible mix.

    And when you listen, take notes!
    • Did the bass get muddy?
    • Did the vocal cut through?
    • Did the synths have room to breath?
    • How does your song compare to other songs on the same system?

    Keep taking notes and listening on every speaker imaginable, until you are happy with how your track sounds across all systems.

    7. Take a Break

    This should be easy, right? Just walk away from your computer for a few minutes every hour so you can avoid putting your ears through a clinical form of torture.

    And maybe, just maybe, take this a step further and get outside.

    Go for a walk. A run. Go to the beach. Do some yoga. Whatever.

    Just do something OTHER than obsess over the tiny details of your mix.

    What you might find is that you'll return to your studio with a clear head, and a much more macro-oriented approach that helps you put those necessary finishing touches on your track.

    8. The Fresh Listen

    That leads us to the final stage of the 8-Step Finishing Checklist. After taking a significant break from your track - at least 2-3 days - you can return back to your music and almost listen objectively.

    It's important to focus on the big picture here and not get too caught up in the little things.

    Big picture stuff would include:
    • Does the song convey emotion?
    • Do the builds make me excited to be alive?
    • Do the breaks make me shed an emo tear?
    • Are the melodies catchy af?

    THAT is the important stuff.

    If all that is clicking and good to go, you've just gotten through the Hyperbits Finishing Checklist and guess what, you're song is done.

    Now go and repeat the process (not just finishing, you know - like making another song) over and over again. And if by any chance you took that last fresh commercial listen and didn't like your track at all, start the Finishing Checklist over again.

    Finishing Checklist Videos

    Ready to incorporate the 8-Step Finishing Checklist into your workflow?

    Download the PDF or watch all 8 videos for further explanations and details surrounding each step of the Finishing Checklist.

    " ["post_title"]=> string(26) "8-Step Finishing Checklist" ["post_excerpt"]=> string(0) "" ["post_status"]=> string(7) "publish" ["comment_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["ping_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["post_password"]=> string(0) "" ["post_name"]=> string(26) "8-step-finishing-checklist" ["to_ping"]=> string(0) "" ["pinged"]=> string(0) "" ["post_modified"]=> string(19) "2016-09-22 14:14:42" ["post_modified_gmt"]=> string(19) "2016-09-22 14:14:42" ["post_content_filtered"]=> string(0) "" ["post_parent"]=> int(0) ["guid"]=> string(32) "http://hyperbitsmusic.com/?p=725" ["menu_order"]=> int(0) ["post_type"]=> string(4) "post" ["post_mime_type"]=> string(0) "" ["comment_count"]=> string(1) "0" ["filter"]=> string(3) "raw" } [2]=> object(WP_Post)#957 (24) { ["ID"]=> int(233) ["post_author"]=> string(1) "2" ["post_date"]=> string(19) "2016-04-22 16:54:15" ["post_date_gmt"]=> string(19) "2016-04-22 16:54:15" ["post_content"]=> string(19275) "

    In mid 2011, Audien tweeted "Why have I never used distortion?"

    This tweet might be more significant than we realize, since his next release was his breakthrough track "Wayfarer" on Anjunabeats.

    Most producers, at some point in their production journey, come across the revelation that is saturation and distortion. It's almost too simple, but these analogue emulators can really be the difference between sounding like you made your music on a laptop, using stock software, versus sounding like you made a track in a multi-million dollar studio.

    So with that in mind, here are my favorite 20 saturation and distortion tools, paired with a real-mix-example which demonstrates how I might use the plugin. Enjoy!

    Sound Toys Decapitator

    1. SOUND TOYS - DECAPITATOR

    This is pretty much the BEST saturation plugin in the game. It can produce a huge variety of analogue-style saturation tones, plus, the amazing ‘punish’ button allows you to use the saturation knob at an extra 20 DBs.

    Side-note – Hyperbits Masterclass students can receive the academic Sound Toys discount and get 50% off the entire Sound Toys suite. This is pretty much the most incredible plugin deal in the entire industry because you are getting the entire Sound Toys Bundle for roughly the cost of just one Sound Toys plugin.

    Real Mix Example:
    Next time your vocals are falling flat in your mix, don’t reach for an EQ.

    Instead, dial in some subtle drive (maybe 3-4), switch the style to the EMI (E) setting, set the mix between 70-80% and listen to your vocal gain new clarity, edge, and brightness as it starts to cut through the mix.

    Fab Filter Saturn

    2. FAB FILTER - SATURN

    The Saturn has some really powerful presets emulating some crunchy amps and tape saturators. And the fact that it is a multi-band saturator makes it one of the most malleable, tweak-able distortion units out there.

    Real Mix Example:

    Sometimes, a sub can sound great completely clean. Other times, it needs some extra dirt to sit right in a mix. Slap on the Saturn, select the preset ‘Best Of – Back in the Day’, set the mix somewhere between 20-30%. Tweak the multi-band parameters to taste. Works ninety-percent of the time, every time.

    Waves GTR Amp

    3. WAVES – GTR AMP AND BASS AMP

    For mid-range distorted basses, I've yet to find anything better for added color and weight. Absolutely love the bass amps in there.

    Real Mix Example:
    Next time your mid-range bass needs help create that ‘wall of sound’ in a drop or full section, put the Waves GTR Amp on a send-return bus, select the preset ‘Bass Mo-Town – Below & Above’ and dial in the send to taste. This should really sound full and crunchy.

    Ohm Force Ohmicide

    4. OHM FORCE – OHMICIDE

    Potentially the most powerful distortion on this list, look no further if you are going for a wow factor in terms of sheer color, depth and weight.

    Real Mix Example:
    If you are looking to make a trance 2.0 bass, something distorted and appropriate for Anjunabeats or Enhanced, apply the Ohmicide and select the Bass #4 preset. Tweak the bands until they match a reference track both in color and energy.

    Bonus! Want to see me use thing thing in action? Check out this 47 minute long video about how I use saturation & distortion in electronic music.

    Camel Audio Camel Crusher

    5. CAMEL AUDIO – CAMEL CRUSHER (FREE)

    Camel Audio seems to have fallen off the map, but at one point, this was a free plugin, so if you do some digging you can find it somewhere on the inter-webs. No excuse not to try this one - really strong and dirty sounds.

    Real Mix Example:
    In your next future-house production, try adding the Camel Crusher to your top hollow-bass layer, set the preset to ‘British Clean’ and turn the master mix-knob down to 30-45%. Assuming sound-choice and other processing is in place, this should be a nice energy layer.

    Noveltech Character

    6. PLUGIN ALLIANCE – NOVELTECH CHARACTER

    So this plugin isn't JUST a saturator, but man is it beautiful. Apply liberally to anything and everything.

    Bonus: try the Noveltech Vocal Enhancer for a slightly brighter more vocal-ready color!

    Real Mix Example:
    Pick ONE element in your mix that needs some attention. It can be anything – vocals, percussion, a lead synth, even a bus or group – throw on the Noveltech Character and turn up the character knob.

    Or, play around with the super powerful presets. Don’t over think this plugin btw – if it sounds great, use it.

    D16 Redoptor

    7. D16 - REDOPTER

    The Redopter is potentially the most underrated plugin on this list. It's got a very specific fuzziness to it that I absolutely love.

    Real Mix Example:
    Most of us don’t sing well enough to add our own vocals into a song.

    However, if you happen to write a cool ambient melody, try recording your voice 3 times (keep one take in the middle, pan one hard left, pan one hard right), and apply the Redopter on the group with plenty of reverb.

    No guarantees, but what you might be left with is a beautiful, almost British and worldly sounding vocal.

    Softtube Saturation Knob

    8. SOFTTUBE – SATURATION KNOB (FREE)

    Another freebie, but this thing is great. The Saturation Knob is an extremely powerful one-knob saturation tool and a great alternative to the Sausage Fattener, the Waves one Knob, or even the Decapitator for those on a budget.

    Real Mix Example:
    Try this baby on lead sounds – synths, guitars, saxophones, vocals – whatever. Switch the Saturation type to ‘Keep High’ and dial in the saturation knob to 30-40%. Honestly, this plugin sounds way too good to be free.

    Dada Life Sausage Fattener

    9. DADA LIFE – SAUSAGE FATTENER

    The Sausage Fattener is actually part saturator, part compressor, part limiter.

    But regardless, stop cranking the fatness knob too far. It can be very useful to thicken up a sound and squash it just right when used it in subtle amounts!

    That said, this plugin really is amazing, and super affordable. There are much better, less metallic distortion and fattener plugins out there, but at this price, it can’t be beat.

    Real Mix Example:
    If you are looking for some extra loudness in your overall mix, slap the sausage on your master, and don’t touch it again.

    I know this sounds crazy but...no drive, no color, nothing.

    Just insert it on your master channel before the limiter and leave it alone. This breaks a lot of production ‘rules’ but can add some extra edge and loudness to your mix.

    Izotope Trash

    10. IZOTOPE – TRASH 2

    I think the key word here is: versatile.

    Housing tons of drive algorithms, pre/post filters, custom wave shaping, and visualization. On top of that, the dry-wet knob gives you ultimate control, no matter how far you push your sounds.

    Real Mix Example:
    Ever throw some drum fills into your mix and find they just sound dead, dull and boring? Send all of your fills to a bus and apply the Trash 2.

    Select ‘Drive – Smooth Overtones’ and turn up the drive knob liberally, up to 50%, and then turn down the mix knob to taste (I usually end up between 5-15%).

    Those dull fills should sound pretty awake and alive at this point.

    Waves One Knob

    11. WAVES – ONE KNOB DRIVER

    Despite the single control – yes there is only one knob to turn – this plugin offers some versatile distortions at a fairly reasonable price point.

    Real Mix Example:
    This thing sounds great on vocals – the next time you want that distorted vocal effect in your track, try the One Knob Driver. Not much to explain here – just turn the knob way up until you reach the desired effect.

    Klangheim SDRR

    12. KLANGHELM – SDRR

    The SDRR is incredibly versatile.

    Sure, you can saturate your music to add warmth, depth, and character – but you can even add some movement to your saturation with the ridiculously cool and powerful DRIFT control.

    Real Mix Example:
    On your drum bus, or main loop – select the ‘DR – Bringing Out The Room’ preset, turn up the Character setting to about 40% (still more warm than sizzle), and turn the Drift knob up to 75-80%. Amazing subtle saturation with added movement, or as Klanghelm calls it – liveliness.

    Sound Toys Radiator

    13. SOUND TOYS - RADIATOR

    The reason this plugin exists – it’s sole purpose on earth – is for you to TURN UP THE HEAT.

    I’m not even joking.

    Everyone is striving for analogue warmth in their digital productions, and this might be the ultimate ticket. Turn up that input gain and listen as your production comes to life.

    Real Mix Example:
    With another simplistic interface, don’t over-think this plugin. Try dialing in small amounts of input gain on any of your groups.

    For a drum bus, try turning down the treble 1 notch, while dialing the input 2 notches. Turn down the mix if needed – this usually groups my drums very nicely.

    UAD Moog

    14. UAD – MOOG MULTIMODE FILTER

    If you are lucky enough to hear this baby in action, you’ll understand why it’s so special.

    It just sounds so damn expensive.

    Maybe that’s because it emulates the classic hardware Minimoog almost perfectly.

    Real Mix Example:
    Liberally open the cutoff slightly over the course of a build or break – I’ve yet to come across a plugin that sounds quite as nice.

    UAD Raw

    15. UAD – RAW

    This monster emulates a 1970’s distortion. Most avid UAD users will likely talk about how great it sounds on guitars, but the warm, crunchy distortions I’ve been achieving in my bass sounds is what makes this thing so special.

    Real Mix Example:
    Grab a deep-house sounding bass from Reaktor’s Monark. Set a low-pass around 600hz, and then apply the UAD Raw – keep the distortion very low, but turn up the filter and the volume.

    What you might be left with is a very Anjunadeep sounding bass.

    Fielding DSP Reviver

    16. FIELDING DSP – REVIVER

    I discovered the Reviver when one of my Masterclass students suggested this as an alternative to the famous Oxford Inflator.

    Most of the plugins on this list emulate some sort of analogue gear – the Reviver doesn’t do that, and doesn’t claim to.

    The entire point of the Reviver is to retain a very clear, un-smashed signal when pushing, saturating

    Real Mix Example:
    Turn up band #3, the ultimate ‘3rd Order Harmonics’ – also referred to as added ‘punch’ or ‘detail’ in a mix. Apply on a drum bus for ultimate punchiness.

    PSP Vintage Warmer

    17. PSP – VINTAGE WARMER 2

    If you’re like me – this plugin most likely has fallen into the ‘I own it, I use it, but have no idea what I am doing with it’ category at some point.

    While there are some great videos that might help you wrap your head around it here and here. At the end of the day, this plugin is great for subtle drive and weight on a master or group channel.

    Real Mix Example:
    Don’t even bother with the presets on this one – just add a few DBs of ‘Drive’ to the master or a bus – will give surprising amounts of character and beef to pretty much any layer.

    SPL Twin Tube

    18. SPL – TWIN TUBE

    What makes the Twin-Tube unique is the dual knobs – one for Saturation and one for Harmonic overtones.

    Use these two together in small amounts, and you have a very versatile plugin.

    Real Mix Example:
    Next time your track is suffering from some inherent dullness, try adding some ‘air’ by applying harmonic distortion via the Twin Tube.

    Apply to your pad/string group and listen to your production start to sizzle.

    URS Saturation

    19. URS – SATURATION

    If the Sound Toys Decapitator had a younger brother (aside from the Radiator) the URS Saturation tool would take the cake.

    With six vintage pre amplifier algorithms, two analog tape saturation algorithms, and two transformer core saturation algorithms – this is one powerful little plugin.

    Real Mix Example:
    There is something about the smoothness with which the URS Saturation plugin works that directs me towards using this thing on Synths – anything that sounds overly digital.

    If you have a lead that sounds generic and very ‘preset’ like – try adding some URS saturation for analogue warmth and tonality that feels and sounds expensive.

    Waves Maserati

    20. WAVES – MASERATI GTi

    Anyone who has ever tried to undertake the creation of huge Audien-like super-saws will know that the Maserati is part of the puzzle. It delivers distortion, color and loudness meant for guitars – but is applicable to so much more.

    Real Mix Example:
    When building your Audien style super-saw stack, isolate a single note lead playing the main melody. Keep the Maserati on the clean setting, and try generously dialing in the presence – this should add some crisp, guitar-like over-tones to an otherwise digital synth layer.

    And there you have it - 20 Saturation Plugins for Electronic Music, and some specific examples as to how to apply them.

    Want to learn more about saturation? What to see me using it in action? Click here and receive a 47-minute long video detailing how I use saturation and distortion.

    " ["post_title"]=> string(59) "Top 20 Saturation & Distortion Plugins for Electronic Music" ["post_excerpt"]=> string(0) "" ["post_status"]=> string(7) "publish" ["comment_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["ping_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["post_password"]=> string(0) "" ["post_name"]=> string(46) "top-20-saturation-plugins-for-electronic-music" ["to_ping"]=> string(0) "" ["pinged"]=> string(0) "" ["post_modified"]=> string(19) "2016-04-28 00:55:03" ["post_modified_gmt"]=> string(19) "2016-04-28 00:55:03" ["post_content_filtered"]=> string(0) "" ["post_parent"]=> int(0) ["guid"]=> string(41) "http://hyperbits.cardwellbeach.com/?p=233" ["menu_order"]=> int(0) ["post_type"]=> string(4) "post" ["post_mime_type"]=> string(0) "" ["comment_count"]=> string(1) "0" ["filter"]=> string(3) "raw" } } ["post_count"]=> int(3) ["current_post"]=> int(-1) ["in_the_loop"]=> bool(false) ["post"]=> object(WP_Post)#894 (24) { ["ID"]=> int(894) ["post_author"]=> string(1) "2" ["post_date"]=> string(19) "2016-12-14 19:47:34" ["post_date_gmt"]=> string(19) "2016-12-14 19:47:34" ["post_content"]=> string(7399) "

    Using reverse techniques in your music is a great way to add details, to add intricacies, to add energy and movement, or even just a splash of creativity.

    Personally, I am a HUGE fan of using reverse sounds in my music. Again, I just see it as a cool way to put a personal spin on a melody, and on top of that, reverses just sound cool.

    #1 Creating Reverse Melodies - 0:50

    Hyperbits - Reverse Midi

    Here is a cool and creative way to create reverse melodies in Logic X.

    Steps:
    1. Duplicate your melody so we aren't editing the original.
    2. Go to your piano roll, select your midi, go to functions, midi transform, and select reverse position.
    3. Extend your region or tweak the reverse position export settings.
    4. Drag new midi in place of original melody.
    5. Bounce new midi in place, or export to audio
    6. Reverse the bounced or printed audio (this give your your original melody played in reverse)

    Creative Options on what you can do with the reversed melodies:

  • Just play it as is.
  • Depending upon your sound design or sound choice, this could be pretty cool on its own. Sometimes less is more.

  • Play both your original melody and reverse melody at the same time.
  • This can get super cluttered easily - just be careful as this technique usually only works with simplistic, minimal and subtle melodies.

  • Cut up the reverse melody.
  • The answer to the previous question of cluttering your melody is to cut up your reverses. If you select tasteful, fewer instances of the reverse, the reverse melody paired with the original might sound really special.

  • Use an auto-panner
  • Sometimes I like to trigger an auto-panner to move with the reverse melody cuts, that way, each reverse transient is playing in a different part of the stereo spectrum - and that is beyond cool.

    #2 Reverse Reverb with Space Designer - 5:15

    Hyperbits - Reverse Reverb

    Instead of manually printing your reverb tails and reversing them, sometimes the reverse button in Logic's Space Designer is a cool way to spark some creative atmospheres and cool tonal differences in your melody.

    Again, this is a very easy trick, but something it can be both super powerful and subtle at the same time.

    #3 Mapping Reverses to a Sampler - 0:50

    Hyperbits - Reverse Sample Mapping

    Mapping audio to a sampler allows you to manipulate ANY sample you have on your computer as if it was a synth.

    We’re going to do that with reverse sounds using a sample downloaded off Splice, from the Bright Lights vocal pack.

    Steps:
    1. Right click on sample and select Convert to Sampler Track.
    2. Select the note of the sample to stay in key.
    3. Hit edit.
    4. Select reverse on the right hand side of the editor
    5. Increase your high and low key range.

    Try to stay within an octave of the original sound, as the further you go from the original the more degraded the audio gets, and you also start running into timing issues.

    Beyond that though - if you want to play a sound with both normal forward samples and reverse samples, I would just suggest creating two sampler instruments - but if you have to keep it all in one track, reference the video from this post and you can map the editor differently which gives you this control of each individual note.

    #4 Reverse Reverb with Stereo Movement - 7:45

    Hyperbits Reverse Reverb with Stereo Movement

    Most producers are familiar with the reverse reverb trick. It's a great way to introduce an important lead or prominent sound in the mix.

    Commonly, it's done with vocals, but it can also be done with lead synths, piano chords, big bass sounds - really anything that you want to introduce via a long reversed reverb tail.

    This is the reverse reverb trick with a bit of swagger by introducing movement.

    Steps:
    1. Put a reverb on the beginning of any audio
    2. Increase the decay time to around 8-15 seconds
    3. Bounce in place or export the audio
    4. Reverse the printed audio
    5. Clean up any pops or abrupt tails
    6. Place a tremolo plugin on the reverse channel
    7. Automate the rate to slowly increase over the life of the reverse reverb

    This means that, depending on the depth, this rate moves left and right across the stereo spectrum - and by automating the rate - the reverse audio will start off slowly moving across the stereo spectrum, and automate to move faster and faster.

    Again, just a really simple but cool trick to get out of doing things the same old way all the time.

    #5 Adding Groove & Energy with Reverses - 10:17

    Hyperbits - Reverses for Energy

    Sometimes I view composing and writing on a digital computer really, as just an effort to humanize everything as much as possible. How can we make what we write digitally on a computer sound more human, more real, and less perfect.

    Now there are tons of things we can do to accomplish that - but one little thing I've noticed?

    Use reverses.

    You’re left with a melody that feels like it spits itself out towards the listener - it's got movement. It's more dynamic, And it just sounds more alive. And 99% of the time - that is a very, very good thing.

    Make sure to reference the video for more examples of this technique.

    " ["post_title"]=> string(48) "5 Creative Composition Techniques Using Reverses" ["post_excerpt"]=> string(0) "" ["post_status"]=> string(7) "publish" ["comment_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["ping_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["post_password"]=> string(0) "" ["post_name"]=> string(48) "5-creative-composition-techniques-using-reverses" ["to_ping"]=> string(0) "" ["pinged"]=> string(0) "" ["post_modified"]=> string(19) "2016-12-14 19:47:34" ["post_modified_gmt"]=> string(19) "2016-12-14 19:47:34" ["post_content_filtered"]=> string(0) "" ["post_parent"]=> int(0) ["guid"]=> string(32) "http://hyperbitsmusic.com/?p=894" ["menu_order"]=> int(0) ["post_type"]=> string(4) "post" ["post_mime_type"]=> string(0) "" ["comment_count"]=> string(1) "0" ["filter"]=> string(3) "raw" } ["comment_count"]=> int(0) ["current_comment"]=> int(-1) ["found_posts"]=> string(1) "3" ["max_num_pages"]=> float(1) ["max_num_comment_pages"]=> int(0) ["is_single"]=> bool(false) ["is_preview"]=> bool(false) ["is_page"]=> bool(false) ["is_archive"]=> bool(true) ["is_date"]=> bool(false) ["is_year"]=> bool(false) ["is_month"]=> bool(false) ["is_day"]=> bool(false) ["is_time"]=> bool(false) ["is_author"]=> bool(false) ["is_category"]=> bool(true) ["is_tag"]=> bool(false) ["is_tax"]=> bool(false) ["is_search"]=> bool(false) ["is_feed"]=> bool(false) ["is_comment_feed"]=> bool(false) ["is_trackback"]=> bool(false) ["is_home"]=> bool(false) ["is_404"]=> bool(false) ["is_embed"]=> bool(false) ["is_paged"]=> bool(false) ["is_admin"]=> bool(false) ["is_attachment"]=> bool(false) ["is_singular"]=> bool(false) ["is_robots"]=> bool(false) ["is_posts_page"]=> bool(false) ["is_post_type_archive"]=> bool(false) ["query_vars_hash":"WP_Query":private]=> string(32) "cd15f7c06249973e2ffe0fd408452899" ["query_vars_changed":"WP_Query":private]=> bool(false) ["thumbnails_cached"]=> bool(false) ["stopwords":"WP_Query":private]=> NULL ["compat_fields":"WP_Query":private]=> array(2) { [0]=> string(15) "query_vars_hash" [1]=> string(18) "query_vars_changed" } ["compat_methods":"WP_Query":private]=> array(2) { [0]=> string(16) "init_query_flags" [1]=> string(15) "parse_tax_query" } }
    December 14, 2016
    5 Creative Composition Techniques Using Reverses

    Using reverse techniques in your music is a great way to add details, to add intricacies, to add energy and movement, or even just a splash of creativity.

    September 22, 2016
    8-Step Finishing Checklist

    Finishing music is hard. In fact, I would argue it’s the most difficult aspect of the creative process. It’s just a lot easier to endlessly tweak your music than it is to confidently put the finishing touches on a song and release it out into the world. I get that.

    April 22, 2016
    Top 20 Saturation & Distortion Plugins for Electronic Music

    In mid 2011, Audien tweeted “Why have I never used distortion?” This tweet might be more significant than we realize, since his next release was his breakthrough track “Wayfarer” on Anjunabeats.

    Skip to toolbar