Mastering is one of the most meticulous parts of song production. Not only does it rely on every previous step (mixing and sound design) being performed correctly, but there is a lot to consider when trying to get your tracks polished to a level suitable for release. Stephen Kirkwood offers his tips and tricks to Read more about Stephen Kirkwood – How to master your own tracks[…]
Transitioning your track from one section to another can be really challenging. You may have many different musical ideas, each of which deserves a place in the track, but they can often feel disjointed, a side effect of the loop-based production style which most DAWs cater to. Stephen Kirkwood presents his favourite ways to solve Read more about Creating your own unique transition effects with Stephen Kirkwood[…]
Compressors can be subtle, transparent, and clean. If you want that, most DAWs have a perfectly suitable candidate. Let’s assume you have access to one of them and are now looking for something more beefy. This is where you might look towards Supercharger GT by Native Instruments. Coming in at $99 on the company’s website Read more about Supercharge your mix with Supercharger GT[…]
Much like how Amazon.com is said to have killed the bookstore, we must ask ourselves, who is responsible for the demise of record stores? The fond memories for many DJs, who spent hours browsing CDs and even vinyl, are now a thing of the past. While a few small outlets remain, fewer DJs than ever Read more about Has Beatport Killed Crate-Digging?[…]
A soundproofed attic of an innocuous industrial unit in the town of Dumbarton, Scotland, hides a secret. I am seated in the studio of Stephen Kirkwood, a room where his globally received trance music and latest hits are produced. Across his desk lies an assortment of hardware synths and drum machines, an iMac dominates the Read more about Stephen Kirkwood – Exclusive Interview[…]
This guide will explore one of the ways to use effects racks to tidy up and streamline your editing process. Not only can Ableton allow extremely advanced rack options, but you can also control multiple parameters with macros creating a whole new world of efficiency and creativity. The first thing to do for this is Read more about Ableton Audio Effects Racks & Macros[…]
One area where many producers fall short is in the “life” of their drums. Today we explore how to use Ableton effects racks to produce a lively, driving techno 808 clap which will brighten up your mix, and add detailed rhythmic elements to the overall sound. […]
With the online tools available, there are many paths to the same goal when it comes to producing music. Plenty of tools are created to simplify creation processes, and many more can be used in place of each other. One of the most interesting is the divide between producers who like to sidechain their bass and kick, and those who like to use an LFO tool to achieve the same effect. Today we explore the differences between each, and which you should choose to do the right job. […]
Achieving multi-label success, Pig&Dan are no strangers to the scene, with experience sitting at Beatport #1, their tracks carry weight in terms of both sound and reputation. Their latest projects include starting up a monthly series of events at fabric called Odyssey. With the first night on Sunday 7th October, they offer insight into what is in store for future events, including their debut live show. […]
You may have heard people talking about tuning their kick drums to improve their songs, both musically and in terms of production ease. This is something which is ignored by many producers, both knowingly and unknowingly. Today I’m going to be discussing the merits of doing so, but also when it isn’t necessary. The issue is contentious in the industry, where some producers swear by tuning kicks, others such as Steve Duda, creator of Xfer and popular synth Serum, believe it is not important. So why do people tune their kick drum, or any sample for that matter?
When looking for new plugins to add to your DAW, you can get caught down the rabbit hole. There are hundreds of different variants of each plugin type, many of which are no better than the stock plugins bundled with your DAW of choice. Very rarely do we find plugins which offer something new, or a better workflow. Today is a day where the Skapade crew have found a plugin which may qualify as a gold find.
There is a big jump from laying down your ideas in the DAW to the finished track. Most producers undergo many hours of processing and polishing before they feel comfortable publishing the song. This can lead to ear fatigue and poor judgement because you are so used to the elements that they cannot be mixed properly. This article outlines some of the steps employed by producers around the world to ensure they output the quality they need. […]