Join J. Scott Giaquinta for an in-depth discussion in this video Distortion effect: Biting arp, part of EDM Production Techniques: Extreme Sound Mangling.
- In this video, I'm going to show you how to use Ohmicide again, to take a lifeless arpeggiation and turn it into something much more spectacular. First, let's listen to the loop. (arpeggiated electronic music) That just repeats. And then I took the second half and I time stretched it to half time. (arpeggiated electronic music) Alright, so just a basic arpeggiation, so let's load up Ohmicide and get going.
We'll come back to this in a second, but first we're going to put an auto filter before it, so we can control the amount of frequency being fed into the distortion. So let's make some adjustments here. (arpeggiated electronic music) That's a good place to start. So, let's open up Ohmicide. We'll start making some adjustments. Now, I'm not going to explain what every single knob and slider does here.
You have to read the manual for that because it's pretty robust. It does a lot of stuff, but I will explain sort of, what each of these functions are. This is the cross over point for each of these bands. This is that shape, type of distortion, the amount of drive, some other distortion controls, feedback and then volume for each band. And of course you can solo, mute and mix, so... Basic stuff. You'll definitely want to refer the manual if you want to learn more, but those are the basic controls. So I'm going to start making some adjustments here. And we'll start hearing some sound change. (arpeggiated electronic music) Now, I'm making some adjustments to some of these other bands.
When we automate them, it'll make more sense. Right now there's not a lot of frequency going into these upper bands because of the crossover point, so we'll get back to that later. Let's see, I need to make sure that that's... (arpeggiated electronic music) Ok, so that sounds pretty good. Let's start automating some of these parameters. Now again, I did create an example track before I created this course, just like many of these other courses. So what I'm going to do here, is I'm going to go through and start automating parameters to sort of match what I've done below, and I'll sort of explain.
You can see what's happening in real time, and you'll sort of relate what you're hearing to what you're seeing, so... Let's start with auto filter resonance, so I'll play this and I'll start adjusting. (arpeggiated electronic music) The resonance will start being more effective once there's more distortion.
So you're not really hearing a whole lot of what that's doing right here, but you will in a moment. So next, let's go to Ohmicide and let's tweak this parameter so it comes up in our automation lane. It's going to be B2 Shape which is this parameter right here. (arpeggiated electronic music) So obviously as the shape comes down, it starts to drive a little harder. (arpeggiated electronic music) Alright, so B2 Shape, let's open that up in its own automation lane.
Alright and then we're going to automate the volume of the first band here, which is this one. So, let's move that. It should come up in our automation lane. Another reason I'm shutting Ohmicide down here is because it's such a big plugin I can't see what I'm doing when it's open while I'm trying to tweak automations, so... (arpeggiated electronic music) Alright, so, I made some basic tweaks here to filter resonance and some of the parameters within Ohmicide, so what I'm going to do next...
I've got this other automation lane that's automating the decay time on a reverb. So, I'm going to copy, actually I have an auto panner, which as you all know pans signal from left to right, and then I've got a reverb after it, and I believe after that I've got a BX control which monos frequencies below a certain frequency. So I'm going to copy all three of these, and when I do that it's going to copy my automation data over to this track as well. So, I won't have to automate it, luckily it will be there, so let me show you what that sounds like with reverb on it now and a little auto panner.
(arpeggiated electronic music) So, let me play the example track again.
I try to match these as close as possible, giving you the steps in-between, but when you're making magic in the moment sometimes you just can't recreate it perfectly. So, let's play the original one and you can get a sense of what I did when I created this track. (arpeggiated electronic music) Wicked, and that's how you can give a little more bit to your arpeggiations.
Note: This course was recorded in Ableton Live, but the tutorials can be used with any digital audio workstation.
- Working with vocoders
- Shifting pitch and frequency
- Creating drama with EQ and filters
- Time stretching
- Enhancing harmonic content with distortion
- Adding movement with flange effects
- Applying reverb and delay
- Creating rhythmic effects with glitches and stutters