Are you looking for more advanced techniques to use in your electronic music production? It’s easy to find beginner courses and guides to help you get started, but if you have some experience under your belt, you may be looking to take your sound quality and arrangements to the next level.
Here’s what you need to know.
Choosing The Right Hardware And Software
Along with enrolling in an advanced electronic music production course, you should take the time to ensure you’re using the right hardware and software.
Your setup should include:
- A computer to host your samples and a digital audio workstation (DAW)
- MIDI controller
- A quality sound card
- High-quality speakers
Choose a DAW that aligns with your workflow, fits your budget and has the capabilities you need.
There are quite a few options out there, but most platforms will offer a free trial. Use these trial options to take each DAW for a test drive and see which one you like best.
Understanding Sound Design
Sound quality and audio should have a goal. Perhaps you want to hype up the listener or create a sound that evokes a certain emotion or thought in the listener. This is a sound design. You can shape your sound with vocals, instruments and effects to create your sound.
Sound is a composition of:
Identify your audio source first, using sampling or use a synthesizer to get started.
Advanced Level Mixing And Mastering
Level mixing and mastering can completely change a track. Balancing is the most important part of the process. Any time a new vocal or instrumental is introduced, mixing it in perfectly with a delay or reverb can make all the difference.
You need to pay close attention to the right amount of headroom that a mix has because if you lack headroom, it will lead to sound distortion.
Also, be cautious of:
- Compressing the track too much
- Equalizing the track too much
Advanced Arrangement Approaches
Electronic music is all about track arrangement, and this is where you can truly stand out as an artist. You need to:
- Create an outline for your arrangements
- Consider how the arrangement evolves throughout the track
- Put the initial loop forward to allow for a good intro
- Listen to the track’s peak moments and make adjustments to hook listeners in
- Arrange the track to tell a story with the tempo and effects
Arrangement is mastered over time, and with the right approach, it can turn boring beats into powerful ones that listeners love.
Drum Programming Techniques
If you don’t know what drum programming is, it’s a way for you to create rhythmic pattern sequences with your music. You want to create a beat that has listeners bobbing their heads, and drum programming is how you do that.
Master the basics first:
If you want to go further with the basics, you’ll then need to learn all about syncopation. You can do this by learning about offbeat techniques, used most often when the momentum of a song picks up.
You should also dive into drum envelopes, suspension, and missed beat techniques, all of which will help you elevate your track.
Once you’ve done this, consider adding hooks into percussions, such as a mirror rhythm or call and response.
Incorporating Innovative Effects
Shaping your sound requires innovative effects. No one wants to hear the same exact effects song after song. You have a lot of options:
Plugins can help you add filters to give your music the unique sound it needs to become an instant hit. Some of the effects that you’ll want to try out in your next production include:
- Panning to create a sound that seemingly moves through your speakers to create a fun, unique sound. You can make it sound like the music starts in one speaker and fades into another using panning.
- Echo and delay are audio effects that you can use to hype up a song. Delays are either short or drawn out. If you want to use a short delay, try a classic slapback. The multi-tap delay is great when trying to mimic techno sounds.
We can go on with the explanation of each effect, but a few you’ll want to look into for yourself are reverb, chorus, distortion, equalization, compression, and tremolo. Master these effects and find unique times to add them to your music.
If you have a good grasp of effects and filters, you’ll have an easier time creating music that resonates with listeners.
Electronic music is popular and played in clubs across the world. From Europe to the United States, this genre has led to derivative forms that include EDM, psychedelic, and neo-soul. Practice makes perfect, and the techniques above can help you transform your sounds from a beginner to a pro.
Barsha Bhattacharya is a senior content writing executive. As a marketing enthusiast and professional for the past 4 years, writing is new to Barsha. And she is loving every bit of it. Her niches are marketing, lifestyle, wellness, travel and entertainment. Apart from writing, Barsha loves to travel, binge-watch, research conspiracy theories, Instagram and overthink.