drum variations

Discussion in 'Production' started by jimjimjim, Apr 5, 2012.

  1. jimjimjim

    jimjimjim oldskool

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    Hi,
    So what tricks do you have for keeping drums interesting?
    I find i either change them too much so the tune has too much focus on the drums.
    Or i dont change them enough - and then they sound repetitive .

    guess it all depends on the tune - i know.

    But any tips?

    go...
     
  2. logikz

    logikz I Am Not The King Staff Member

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    gosh a lot, but lately distorted edits and filter sweeps. i think you can get pretty far with normal drumming though, sparse patterns with snare variations, cymbals, bongo.
     
  3. Salvus

    Salvus Member

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    Im struggling to do just that on a tune im working on. Filter sweeps is deffo something ive used before.
    Never tried distortion to change it up. Good shout logikz.

    Sometimes I export my grouped drum bus and just chop bits out and shit in a serperate instance of ableton so it sounds a bit hacked up and glitchy, I find that a little tedious though.
     
  4. oversight

    oversight Member

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    bit crush distortion, modulate the amount,
    switch to a different sounding break for a bar
    chuck a high pass at it
    remove the snares/ kicks for a bar


    few ideas for you
     
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  5. JReilly

    JReilly Member

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    Try making your drum sequence longer, for example if you have a 2 bar loop make it 4 and add some variations. Maybe through in a few random sound FX that do not repeat to often to add a new dimension to your sounds.

    Also, don't keep everyhting snapped to grid, leave your kicks and snares but try to find a nice groove with the rest of your kit. Over quantized beats sound robotic and boring.

    There is no rules though. Experimentation is the best IMO.
     
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  6. jimjimjim

    jimjimjim oldskool

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    some great tips here thanks fellas.
    yeah filter sweeps - i nornally screw them up and the sound goes wayyy too loud - limiter needed maybe?
    distortion is a good tip - tried that once - got a nice sound to it - i should use that more often.
    liking the hi pass ideas
    yeah i normally put a bit o shuffle on hats/shakers
    knew u guys would inspire me <3
    <3
     
  7. marcelkennard

    marcelkennard Storms comin in Annie

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    Just using a new break and processing it a little to mix it with the track can be all you need as long as you use a really nice break sample! I like to look for any cool breaks I can find- dont have to be dnb necessarily either!
     
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  8. Mr Fletch

    Mr Fletch aka KRONIX

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    I find that if you have a break running behind your main drums it's always good to either throw in a different break at the end of every 16 bars to help change things up a bit. Or another thing I do with breaks is reverse the last half a bar on every 8th or 16th bar, really helps it move along. Maybe something as simple as adding an extra kick or snare every 16 could also be all it needs to sound fresh.
     
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  9. jimjimjim

    jimjimjim oldskool

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    good tips there thanks mista fletch
     
  10. groelle

    groelle Well-Known Member

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    or just move the kick position, so if you got a standard two step rythm, just replace the kick so that it hits 4x4 or even just get rid of the second.

    or you could always just put the first kick on the 0.5 aswell ;)

    changing up the main hi hat pattern is also woth a shout.

    experiment! and some good tipps in here =)
     
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  11. sam the dnb man

    sam the dnb man Variation

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    adding different percussive elements every 8 bars goes down a treat
     
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  12. Innovine

    Innovine Active Member

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    I don't like changing up the sound with distortion or filter trickery. What works for me is thinking like a drummer, and implementing fills and variations in the right places. Its important to build and show off a structure at all levels/bar lengths throughout the track. For instance, i like a kick pattern thats two bars long, and opening the hihat on a single hit at the end of four bars, and a minor fill and a crash at 16 bars, and a major fill at 32 or 64 bars, preferrably a 2-4 bar long fill or mini solo. Since I also play drums, this shows off the different length patterns I can keep track of, especially when there are still other changes going on like changing hihat ostinato during different sections. This approach results in the drums marking the position in a subtle way and can really propel a track forward when done right. Producing tasty fills and rhythmic breaks or variations is hard work, which is why most people get lazy and dont do it. Trust me its worth spending loads of time to get that fill just right. A tip is to sing or beatbox along with your baseline and record it, and try to rrecreate on drums. Lots more musical than just throwing on some stutter edit fx or randomly plopping down some shit.
     
  13. jimjimjim

    jimjimjim oldskool

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    good tips there.
    wish i had more "drummer" skills tbh - after a few variations on my main beat sometimes i struggle for ideas/inspiration.
    (which was the point of this thread)
    nice one
     
  14. logikz

    logikz I Am Not The King Staff Member

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    im all interested now innovine, id like to hear some of your stuff, do you have anything online?
     
  15. Innovine

    Innovine Active Member

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    No, I haven't put anything online, because to be honest my timing is not tight enough for me to be happy with releasing tracks :) I experimented some with break choppage and drumfunky stuff on my MPC, but want I really wanna do is play live drums. I'm pretty happy with my beats, and the structure/arrangements, but I still need to play them properly :p
    I posted a short clip in the new talent forum a while back though.
     
  16. logikz

    logikz I Am Not The King Staff Member

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    i cant find it, link?
     
  17. bulletstorm

    bulletstorm Member

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    Innovine,

    What kind of drumset do you use? acoustic or electric?
    I use the Roland TD 9KX, sounds very nice.
     
  18. logikz

    logikz I Am Not The King Staff Member

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    you mean you lay your drums live bulletstorm?
     
  19. bulletstorm

    bulletstorm Member

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    yeah we did that in a few tracks, but it is really hard to stay in the rythm.
    So most of our drums are made in maschine.
    but in our performances we use live drums on top of a dj set =)
     
  20. Innovine

    Innovine Active Member

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    Yeah its loads easier to play along with something than to keep banging out a dead steady groove. Dnb is really unforgiving! I have a td12 and I use an mpc1000 for layering some samples. I sort of like the feel of the vex kits as opposed to samples though, they can be very lifeless sometimes.
    I mostly just jam aalong with mixes, or practice. I don't currently have the time to put my own tracks together.