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Thread: Layering Kick Drums

  1. #1
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    Layering Kick Drums

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    I have my own way of making house kick:
    1. Choose sub and top kick that are fit together. Sometimes little bit of tunning is needed so they can fit together.
    2. Sub Kick - insert in channel 1 (in mixer), then eq with hp at 40hz and with lp I cut most of mid and high frequencies.
    3. Top Kick - insert in channel 2 (in mixer) then with hp i cut most of low end freq. and a bit high shelf of high end.
    Separated eq is needed so that both kicks freq. are not overlaping to each others.
    4. Then I route both my channel 1 and 2 to channel 3.
    5. After that I put some Transient plugin, Compressor, Saturation and Eq.

    any sugestion is welcome

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    Nice

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    Like most bedroom producers outthere you miss the two most important things when starting layering: phase and transient alignment.
    Recording | Mixing | Mastering | 1-on-1-Online-Tutoring

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    Or, like... why do it?

    I'm not sure why people layer full kicks together. Like a low one and a high one...why? I mean kicks are simple animals, what are you so desperate for that you combine multiple actual kicks? Just find another kick. Everyone has a billion kicks. There aren't that many variations. If you want to be able to fine tune your kick, great, synth it.

    I've said it before and I'll say it again and I'll probably get called a neophyte or out of touch... there's a surreal obsession with kick drums. There are other things more important to worry about.

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    I don't see the issue, if he has a way of putting kicks toghether, it's his choice. If you want to use an individual kick that suits you, use it. Can't judge people for their own style, I found this quite useful.

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    People are free to do what they want. Make kicks however they want. But this is a discussion forum. For discussion.

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    Fair play.
    stylisshbeats.bandcamp.com [URL="https://www.soundcloud.com/stylisshbeats"]
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  10. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by MarcDHall View Post
    Or, like... why do it?

    I'm not sure why people layer full kicks together. Like a low one and a high one...why? I mean kicks are simple animals, what are you so desperate for that you combine multiple actual kicks? Just find another kick. Everyone has a billion kicks. There aren't that many variations. If you want to be able to fine tune your kick, great, synth it.

    I've said it before and I'll say it again and I'll probably get called a neophyte or out of touch... there's a surreal obsession with kick drums. There are other things more important to worry about.

    You NEOPHYTE! jk
    I checked out your page, you are doing some pretty dope and complex things and I like it a lot.
    I see what you mean but I would say that instead of there not being that many variations, I would say that there are almost infinite---if not infinite variations. With the timing of the layers, the sound chosen, the texture/character of the layers and how they are ultimately blended/mixed. Layering your own kicks with samples/organic recordings/found sounds or anything really, is just as valid in sound design as any other aspect IMO. I'm sure there's going to be some really great innovations in drum design that we have yet to witness.

    It does also matter greatly which genre you are working with. In hiphop, the drums is usually the most important part of what directions the music takes and how it makes you feel. So, in this scenario, the kick is vastly important.

    Mad Phoenetics mentioned an important aspect of the layering process.

    I do not think someone should spend a lot of time sculpting the kick drum in the beginning stages of carrying out inspiration though. It'll suck you dry and you will become exhausted before you get your ideas down.
    Last edited by AudioPhorm; 09-09-2016 at 01:46 AM.

  11. #9
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    Thanks for the complements!

    I think there is a trap you can fall into is that every sound has to be everything. You want to have a kick that does lots of things at once. That can be hard to mix. If you have a deep kick you can use a snappy bass. If you have a deep bass you want a clicky kick.

    The danger is that you create a kick that is thunky and toppy and snappy and oomphy and leaves no room for anything else.

    As you say, genre matters... Hip-Hop has a vary sparse aesthetic so each sound can be more expansive. Many Hip-Hop tracks are literally rapping, bass and a kick+snare+hats combination, with the kick and bass taking turns. That gives you lots of room to work with and each sound is much more of a star.

    Compare that to a much thicker genre, like old-school trance music, you can't have a huge subby sine wave bass and a huge subby sine wave kick.


    If you are combining elements to create a kick, or any sound, the biggest strength that gives you is control in the mix, which is context sensitive. That means not creating and then using the kick, but rather setting up a configurable kick and tweaking it to work with everything else as you go.
    Last edited by MarcDHall; 09-09-2016 at 02:30 AM.

  12. #10
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    Yea... I mean... mad Phonetics has a hit point here... When you start 'eq'ing' kicks... and cutting shit out here and there.. thats where phase issues start... and sometimes it does not mesh or glue the way you wan't it... I would be interested to hear how the kick sounds after all that processing.. post a track... and let us hear the results...

    I usually use two kicks... and make sure they are full... in tune, and in phase... saturation then binds the elements in a cohesive fashion.. instead of creating phase issues so early on in the mixing process... many kick samples will be out of phase if you layer them... you can remedy this in pro tools or other DAW's that allow you to flip the phase to align them...

    Though whatever works for you I guess... I always group the drums to a bus... and saturate them... though only after they are tuned, in phase, and glued together... compression after that is optional... as I want my drums to punch through the mix, and not be attenuated if it can be helped...
    Nobody wins this game......

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