Unique and creative underground electronic music loops and samples for modern producers.

Logic Pro X Tutorial – Making a Track Part 3: Finalising Your Track

There are no one-size-fits-all solutions to what to do with your master buss. In fact, some producers and engineers make sure there’s nothing on it at all. If you do decide to EQ and limit your track’s master, there are a few Do’s and Don’ts that can lead to a louder, cleaner and better sound. In the third part of our Making a Track in Logic Pro X tutorial, producer and engineer Rob Rox (Banks, Munk) looks at some techniques when finalising your track. Watch it above and make sure you subscribe to our YouTube channel for more free tutorials and live events.

munk-photo-2In this new tutorial, Rob Rox (Munk [pictured], Banks) looks at finalising your track in Logic Pro X

If you want to learn more Logic techniques, our online Music Production Master Diploma course dives much deeper into Apple’s popular software. Taken for up to 64 weeks and from anywhere in the world, the Diploma covers everything from mixing, mastering and sound design to music business and composition. Find out more about this course here.

Register to Access Free Courses, Projects, Samples & More

When you register with Point Blank, you access an array of free sounds, online course samples, access to our social network Plugged In and much more! Simply register below and visit our Free Stuff page to get your hands on a range of exclusive music-making tools and tutorials provided by the team. Fill your boots!

The post Logic Pro X Tutorial – Making a Track Part 3: Finalising Your Track appeared first on Point Blank’s Online Magazine.

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Learn Ableton Live at Dubspot LA w/ Ryan Crosby

Join distinguished producer, singer/songwriter, and guitarist Ryan Crosby to learn the art of music production and live performance at the new Dubspot LA location in Hollywood, CA starting June 13th. Learn how to create, record, produce, and even perform music with the industry’s leading software, Ableton Live. Enroll today, only a few seats available!

Ryan Crosby

Ryan Crosby is taking his experience and knowledge as a successful producer, singer/songwriter, and guitarist to the classroom as one of Dubspot’s resident Ableton Live instructors at the beautiful new Dubspot LA location in Hollywood CA located amidst California’s creative epicenter.

Ryan has worked with a lot of talented people over the years in the pursuit of producing, writing, and contributing to amazing music. His expertise in the Rock, Electronic, Pop, and Hip-Hop genres have created a unique diversity that allows him to work well on a variety of projects in different fields. He has performed on records with Kurupt, Tupac, George Clinton, Snoop Dogg, Myka Nyne, Abstract Rude, C-Bo, Aceyalone, Dr. Oop, Aftermath’s Slimm, The Mobster, Fat Joe, and many others. In addition to self-releasing several original albums as an artist, Ryan has also collaborated with top stars in the industry and has award winning music featured in many national commercials, TV shows, and films.

Join Ryan for our upcoming Ableton Live Producer Certificate Program starting Monday, June 13th and take your music production and live performance skills to the next level by learning valuable techniques that will help launch your career as a musician. Discover the linear and improvisational styles of producing electronic music as we help you master the software’s innovative interface while guiding you through the artistic journey of discovering your sound and developing it into a unique body of work. Learn more about this comprehensive program.

“The Ableton Curriculum at Dubspot gets to the heart of the DAW that has been front and center of the creative explosion in the LA beat community for the past decade. We will explore how flexible Ableton is within all modern electronic genres, as well as discover cutting edge techniques that will be used to create future music.” – Ryan Crosby


About Ryan Crosby

Ryan Crosby is an L.A.-based producer, artist, session musician, and Ableton Instructor at Dubspot Los Angeles. He divides his time producing pop, rock, urban, and electronic music as well as singing, playing guitar, and composing for TV, commercials and film. He also records vocals for electronic artists under the name PRYVT RYN, recently featured on the song “Forget You” by the artist Years, and currently performs solo shows in Los Angeles and with his group Crystal Twin.

“You have to constantly evolve and tap into your creative potential. The modern electronic musician must know the tools they use, and also be open to new concepts and ideas they never believed possible.”

Ryan has played guitar, produced or appeared on records with the following artists: King Fantastic, Kurupt, Tupac, Boehm, Markus Schulz, Mya, Ferry Corston, Kenny Segal and Team Supreme, George Clinton, Snoop Dogg, Anthony Hamilton, Sy Smith, Myka Nyne, Abstract Rude, P.E.A.C.E., Project Blowed, Fat Joe, Freeway, Raekwon, C-Bo, Sergey Lazarev, T-Killah, Lucien Dante Pistol and Pints, Latham Bowman, Chikk, Danni Rouge, Kid Whiskey, Attached By Wires, VAST, and others.

Ryan has appeared as a musician/vocalist on TV ads for such brands as Target, Cadillac, KFC, Xfinity, Dell, Ford, Dasani, Leapfrog, Toyota, Acura, Kashi, Tidy Cat, and many others. He also composed the theme song to Impractical Jokers alongside regular collaborator Kenny Segal. His group, The Mansion Boys, placed three original songs on The Jersey Shore, which spawned the success of the song “Go Out Tonight” and placements on numerous MTV shows.

In the film world, he composed numerous songs on “Never Look Back 2”; had four songs on “Fuel”, Sundance 2008 Festival winner; was a composer on the film “Gang Of Roses”; and played guitar for 2014’s “Stage Fright”, a horror film about a guitar-playing theater camp murderer. Ryan (along with Kenny Segal) won “Best Original Song” at the 2009 AVN awards for the song “Please” from Dark City.

Connect with Ryan on Facebook | Twitter | SoundCloud | Website


Ableton Live Producer Certificate Program

At Dubspot our world-class instructors provide the most complete and cutting-edge Ableton Live learning experience. The Ableton Live Producer Certificate Program is the flagship of our music training. After completing this program, you will leave with a portfolio of original tracks, a remix entered in an active contest, a scored commercial to widen your scope, and the Dubspot Producer’s Certificate in Ableton Live.

Click here to view the embedded video.

About This Program

This program is about learning Ableton Live by going through the entire process of being an artist, by developing your own sound through a series of sketches and experimentation. You will also learn the ins and outs of this powerful software through a series of exercises designed to help you master the steps involved in producing your own music. After a level of getting familiar with the tools that Ableton has to offer, you will then develop your sonic ideas into full-length tracks. You will be exposed to a variety of approaches to arrangement and composition, storytelling techniques, ways of creating tension and drama in your music. At the end of the day, it is the sum total of your choices as an artist that define your sound, and levels 2 – 6 will give you the experience of actually completing tracks to add to your portfolio.

What’s Included

  • Ableton Live Level 1: Beats, Sketches, and Ideas
  • Ableton Live Level 2: Analyze, Deconstruct, Recompose, and Assemble
  • Ableton Live Level 3: Synthesis and Original Sound Creation
  • Ableton Live Level 4: Advanced Sound Creation
  • Ableton Live Level 5: Advanced Effect Processing
  • Ableton Live Level 6: Going Global with your Music

Additional Information

Visit the Ableton Live course page for detailed information on this program here.

If you have questions, please call 877.DUBSPOT or send us a message.


The post Learn Ableton Live at Dubspot LA w/ Ryan Crosby appeared first on Dubspot Blog.

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Point Blank on Pioneer DJ Radio: DJ Apollo

One of the many reasons to learn the craft of DJing at Point Blank is that you get the chance to have your mixes played exclusively on Pioneer DJ Radio alongside the likes of top artists like Slam, Sante and Eats Everything. We get a real kick out of showcasing our students’ talent and seeing it reach an audience of thousands each week. What’s more, because PDJR also features shows from some of the biggest and best labels out there including Cadenza, Get Physical and Defected, you never know who might be listening.

PB DJPoint Blank’s brand new DJ Studio in our second London facility is sponsored by Pioneer DJ and features all of the latest top-of-the-range kit – including CDJ2000nxs, DJM2000nxs and the DDJ-SX controller

This week it’s the turn of Slovakia’s DJ Apollo to step up with a no-nonsense house and techno workout. Starting out as a DJ in 2003, Nebojša Janković – his real name –  has become known as a fierce champion of club music. Alongside acclaimed Slovak DJ Pero Fullhouse, in his promoter guise Nebojša has been responsible for bringing some of the world’s biggest DJs to Slovakia and Croatia. However, it’s his DJ skills behind the decks that we’re focusing on here, and in 2015 Nebojša travelled to London to study the Weekend DJ Course at Point Blank – an experience he valued highly. “I found [the course] a new source of inspiration,” he explains. “And it complimented my music skills.” Get to grips with his Pioneer DJ Radio Mix below and check out his website here.

Feeling inspired? You can find out more about our DJ courses in London here, or, alternatively, you can speak to a course advisor. You can give us a call on 0207 729 4884. If you’re calling from outside of the UK, call +44 20 7729 4884. And remember, If you’re studying with us and want to join Dj Apollo in getting your DJ mix played on Point Blank’s show on Pioneer DJ Radio, get in touch with Louise at Point Blank.

Register to Access Free Courses, Plug-ins, Projects, Samples & More

When you register with Point Blank, you access an array of free sounds, plugins, online course samples, access to our social network Plugged In and much more! Simply register below and visit our Free Stuff page to get your hands on a range of exclusive music-making tools and tutorials provided by the team. Fill your boots!

The post Point Blank on Pioneer DJ Radio: DJ Apollo appeared first on Point Blank’s Online Magazine.

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Student Opportunities: Graveny School are Looking for a Music and Sound Technician

We strive to give our students and alumni unique opportunities to get involved within the music industry. These come exclusively from our extensive network of industry contacts, and can range from DJ performance to internships and paid roles too. Scroll down to see what’s popping this week, and for those that want to access many more ongoing opportunities like this, you can find out all about our courses right here! Please remember – all of the opportunities detailed below are for PB students and alumni only.

Graveny School Music Department Are Looking for a Music and Sound Technician

Graveney Music logo_new

A secondary school in South London (Tooting/Streatham) are looking for a Music and Sound Technician. This is a one year graduate placement beginning in September, and is a paid role.

Main tasks and responsibilities include:

• Managing the music technology facilities in the music department
• Supporting KS3 lessons through technical support as well as working with pupils on lesson tasks
• Supporting KS4 and 5 composition lessons
• Dealing with problems occurring from the day to day running of the music technology facilities
• To record and collate GCSE / A Level performances and compositions ready for submission
• Recording and mixing of all concerts (performance occasions average more than one every fortnight and these recordings are frequently used for submission for public exams)
• To produce a CD of performance highlights throughout the year to sell to pupils and parents
• To aid students in the use of amplification and recording equipment (including supporting KS4 and 5 performing lessons)
• To set up sound equipment for assemblies, presentation evenings etc. as appropriate
• Supervision of all technical equipment – amplifiers, microphones, leads, extensions
• To take part in ensembles and support music staff in extracurricular activities
• To attend a number of residential and day trips throughout the year
• To work as a team member in enhancing the music education of Graveney pupils

There is an opportunity for a suitable candidate to take on extra paid work teaching music theory classes if they are interested in doing so. Additionally, there’s scope for the music and sound technician to develop other projects and initiatives. Previous technicians have set up sound recording clubs, developed the music archives, been responsible for social media and pioneered a music festival

Terms and Conditions

• Term Time Working: 39 weeks
• Remuneration: To be confirmed
• Hours: As directed by the Music Department
• Duration: September – July

Those interested in applying should send a CV and cover letter to louise@pointblanklondon.com.

Register to Access Free Courses, Plugins, Projects, Samples & More

When you register with Point Blank, you access an array of free sounds, plugins, online course samples, access to our social network Plugged In and much more! Simply register below and visit our Free Stuff page to get your hands on a range of exclusive music-making tools and tutorials provided by the team. Fill your boots!

The post Student Opportunities: Graveny School are Looking for a Music and Sound Technician appeared first on Point Blank’s Online Magazine.

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Creating the Perfect Bass Sound

Searching for the perfect bass patch can be an odious task. With such a plethora of synths and libraries out there, flicking through the almost endless presets to find what’s right for you is like finding a needle in haystack.

Getting something that works with any samples or chord progressions you’ve got, that sits nicely with your kick drum and still carries enough weight to shake those subwoofer cones can seem like a juggling act.

In this tutorial we’re going to explain how to create bass sounds and lines with powerful subs, thick mids and tops that cut through on any system. Download the project used in this tutorial here. Here’s the final bass sound you’ll learn how to make:


There are a myriad of dos and don’ts out there and you can spend more time tweaking than actually making music. In this article we’ll take a forensic look at how to build your basslines from the bottom up, from creating a penetrating sub bass, layering the mids and tops, getting it to bite in all the right places and processing it with your kick and rest of the mix.

Due to the low bass frequencies in these audio examples we suggest listening through good headphones or studio monitors to appreciate the nuanced programming.

Low-End Theory

Depending on which genre of music you’re working on, the bass might perform a different function; in house and techno, a weightier kick drives the track along, dictating the pace and feel. Basslines in these genres might contain more mid-range frequencies to cut through the mixes.

Drum ’n’ bass, dubstep and other bass-heavy music can contain much more bottom end and sub frequencies, underpinning your loop. Balancing your kick and bass can be an essential part of getting your track working. With weak foundations, you’re going to struggle to get the rest of the mix sitting comfortably.

To understand bass properly, there are a few key terms you will want to get your head around: amplitude, harmonics and phase. Amplitude is simply a term for volume, but it’s not to be confused with decibels (dB). It’s more akin to relative volume or power.

Harmonics are the name given to all the frequencies that go into making up a sound. The lowest, loudest note in your bass sound is the first harmonic (or fundamental). Any frequency above this will normally be a harmonic.

Harmonics are integer multiples of the fundamental frequency. If that didn’t mean anything don’t worry, the maths is simple. Let’s have a look at Live’s Operator instrument using Osc A. Below is a low A note (110 Hz) and I’ve adjusted the Waveform Editor, bringing in the next four harmonics one at a time. They are the frequencies, 220, 330, 440 and 550Hz.

First Five Harmonics

Just above Operator we can see Voxengo SPAN mapping frequency across our X-axis and amplitude across our Y-axis: you can quite clearly see each harmonic creeping in relative to the fundamental. To the right is an oscilloscope by Laidman & Katsura, this displays time across the X-axis and amplitude across the Y-axis.

The other concept we need to familiarise ourselves with is phase. There are primarily two places we’ll come up against this, the first of which is the start phase of an oscillator. Below we can see eight notes with their phase free running (the default of most synths) and with their phase locked to restart at 0º when a note is played:





As you can see without restarting the phase, each note has a different start position within the oscillators cycle, causing irregularities in volume and nasty clicks and pops.

The second instance of phase we’re likely to come across is relationship between the left and right channel. It’s highly recommended to keep your frequencies below about 100Hz in mono: any disparity in stereo spectrum here can be very noticeable, causing phasing issues when summed to mono and more irregularities in volume.

Creating a Sub Bed

While we might tend to think of basses as one sound we can sometimes separate their spectrums up further into complex composites – containing as many as three or even four layers – each requiring different programming, processing and treatment.

Flexibility with the sub, low-mids and mid range can be key in getting the right amount of punch, the bass cutting through the mix and retaining that all-important stereo image. Let’s start off with our sub frequencies.

The only way your bass is going to move air on the dancefloor is getting a good, meaty sub. Making a competent sub isn’t rocket science, as it requires very little understanding of synthesis and sound, but making a great sub just takes a little more. Let’s stay with Operator for now.

Osc A defaults to a sine wave, a waveform that contains only the first harmonic. This is good for sub bass as it’s clear and uncluttered. Ensure the phase restarts on 0º (0%) and change the Voices to 1 in the Global Shell.

Phase Restart

If you’re leaving the sub as the sole layer for the bass part then you can almost leave it untouched. I’ve added in -30dB from Osc B, which is modulating the frequency of Osc A. This adds just a few harmonics into the sound helping it cut through a busier mix and on smaller speakers.

Do this by enabling Osc B and turning the Level up to -30dB, or wherever you feel the sweet spot is. It’s good to check on a spectral analyser, though, as frequency modulation can sometimes overpower the fundamental frequency if you add too much in.

Osc B introduced:

By increasing the level of Osc B we can create a brighter, sharper tone. You can shape the overall FM by reducing the sustain of the amplitude envelope of Osc B. With the level around -13dB, and changing the Coarse tuning to 4 (fourth harmonic), we can get an archetypal garage/UK house sound:

Garage Bass

Osc B Louder and Tuned:

Shaping the Low-Mid Tone

Once we’ve got our foundations laid we need to move on to the lower mid range, which is going to shape the body of our bass. Click on the Operator and hit cmd + G (or ctrl + G if you’re on a PC) to group the Operator into an Instrument Rack. Instrument Racks allow MIDI to be distributed to various different chains of synths and samplers and their combined signals to be processed and mixed individually.

Click on the Show/Hide Chain List and rename the Operator “Sub”. It can be muted for now while we concentrate on our midrange.

Show Chain List

Ctrl + right-click in the panel where it says Drop an Instrumental or Sample Here, click Create Chain and name it “Mids”. We’re looking for a synth that has a couple of oscillators and, while most any subtractive synth will do, I’m opting for Native Instruments’ Massive. Drag and drop it on to the Mids chain.

Massive’s default preset is using Oscillator 1 with a wave that’s harmonically halfway between a square and a sawtooth. It’s running into filters 1 and 2, and Envelope 4 is controlling our amplitude. Let’s set about getting it to a place where we can design our sound.

Move the WT-Pos (wavetable position, highlighted in green) fully clockwise to Squ and set the routing of the oscillator to F1 (yellow). Now click on the 4 Env panel and reduce the Attack to minimum and increase the Level to maximum (blue and red).

Massive Reset

You can repeat these steps oscillators 2 and 3 if you want.

In the Osc panel, click to Restart via Gate in the Oscillator Phases box. Much like Operator, Massive allows us to select the start phase of our oscillators each time a new note is received. If we were designing a pad or poly synth patch with unison detune it might not be necessary to take these steps, but for a lot of modern bass sounds it’s recommended.

Finally, in the Voicing tab, change the Voicing from Polyphon to Monorotate and the Trigger from Always to Legato Triller. These steps ensure the bass is monophonic and that envelopes won’t retrigger if two notes overlap.

Next I’m going to enable Osc 2 and load a sawtooth in. There are a few two choices here, the Squ-Saw and Squ-Sw II. Ensure the WT-Pos is in the right place and turn the amplitude up to just half way. This gives us a richer sound that is dominated by the odd harmonics provided by the square wave – plenty of middle and top end for out filters to bite on to.

Route Osc 2 to F1 and turn your attention to the filter section. I’m going to add the Lowpass 2 filter – this has a weaker slope than the Lowpass 4 giving it a smoother sound – which will sound great later on down the line when we start modulating it.

Set the Cutoff to about 8 o’clock and leave the Resonance as is. Before moving on I’ve added the Ktr (keyboard tracking) Macro to modulate our filter. This tracks the position of the filter according to the pitch, opening it as the pitch gets higher. Lastly set the >F2 to Series and the Mix to Mix1.

At this stage you can add a third oscillator in tuned up an octave or two if you want to. This won’t really add anything to the weight of the bassline but it might help it come across on smaller speakers.

In addition you could add some Sine Shaper from the Inserts. Experiment with their position before or after the filter in the Routing panel.


Basic setting in Massive:

Filter Envelopes for Bite and Punch

Modulation comes in all shapes and sizes and by far the two most common sources are LFOs and envelopes. Let’s look at each in turn, starting off with LFOs.

LFO stands for low frequency oscillator, and this is a control value that falls within the 0.01 Hz to 20 Hz spectrum. We wouldn’t be able to hear these waves on their own, as they’re subsonic, but when applied to filter cutoff or volume we can hear their effect.

Their value is determined by a ‘rate’ and their modulation is bi-polar i.e it has a positive and negative part to the cycle. LFOs are great for tempo-synced modulation like dubstep wobbles, filter and frequency modulation as well as stereo tremolo on pads and rhodes-type instruments.

Envelopes on the other hand are unipolar and whereas LFOs are free running envelopes are gate triggered. Massive contains four envelopes and number 4 defaults to modulating the amplitude.

Commonly there are four stages in an envelope: the attack (time in milliseconds it takes to reach the maximum level from a MIDI note on signal); decay (time in ms after the attack has passed to reach the sustain stage); sustain (value at which the note sustains at); and release (time in ms the sound takes to reach zero again after a MIDI note off is received).


I’ve used envelope 1 to control several parameters in our mid-layer. Here, I’ve used the shortest attack available and dropped the level (Massive’s terminology for sustain) and set the decay parameter to a value of 11 o’clock. The decay time might differ drastically depending on your tempo, where at higher bpms you might want a shorter decay time and at slower tempos you could get away with letting the envelope’s modulation breath a little more.

Decay envelope

We can add this envelope to as many different parameters as we like. Firstly let’s add it to our filter (which, if you remember, already has some modulation from the keyboard tracking). Setting the amount of modulation is key to controlling the harmonics that come through and therefore sets the tone of your transient. Having more modulation means the initial hit is brighter, and less, duller.

I’m also adding the same modulation to the Drive circuits on the two Inserts, for which I’ve used Parabolic and Sine Shapers. These add harmonics into the signal by folding over the upper portions of a waveform. One of these is placed before the filter and one after.

Lastly I’ve used Massive’s powerful Modulation Oscillator tuned up 19 semitones (one octave plus a perfect fifth above the MIDI input) and set to Phase modulate Osc 2. Sonically phase modulation is very similar to frequency modulation, and again adds a nice blast of complex high frequencies to our transient.

envelope mod

Macro Managing

We want this bass to be as flexible as possible so I’m going to set up some Macros within Live’s Instrument Rack to control our mids. Click on the Unfold Device Parameters and then click Configure.

Unfold Configure

Now, anything you touch in Massive will populate this list. I’m going to add the filter cutoff, the drive and dry/wet from both inserts, the phase from our modulation oscillator and the level from envelope 1. If you’ve done that correctly it should look like this:

Config 2

Unclick the Configure button and assign these to Macros. I’m going to give the filter cutoff it’s own Macro named “Cutoff” and the dry/wet and drives of both inserts will be mapped to Macro 2, “Drive”.

The envelope level will be mapped to Macro 3, named “Env Mod” (because cleverly reducing the Marco to 0 will remove all of the envelope modulation), and lastly the phase will be mapped to Macro 4 named, “FM”.

colour code

Once they’re named and colour-coded, click Map and carefully set the ranges for each parameter. It’s good to have a MIDI loop running in the background whilst you do this. You want to set a minimum and maximum that are musical but allow some space for interesting automation later on down the line.


Top Layer

Now we’ve put the work into our mid-range let’s concentrate on the top layer. I’m going to duplicate my instance of Massive for mids by clicking on the chain and hitting cmd + d (or ctrl + d for a PC). Rename this new chain “Top” and solo it.

Aside from the patch being duplicated you’ll notice all of our hard work that’s gone into tweaking the Macros has been retained. Let’s edit this patch to get a more suitable top end. Firstly I’m going to disable the Oscillator Phases to Restart via Gate. I’m going to experiment with Unison Detune in this patch. Restarting the oscillator’s phases can sometimes create a nasty flanging sound when combined with unison detune.

I’m setting both oscillators to sawtooths now, matching their amplitudes and detuning them ever so slightly. The wider the detune amount, the faster beating we get. Beating is a fluctuation we hear when two oscillators are playing the same note but out of tune (you hear a similar effect when tuning two adjacent strings on a guitar together).

I’ve opted for +/- 20 cents. Next add in Osc 3 selecting the Scrim (Screamer) wavetable. Use envelope 1 to modulate the wavetable readout. I’ve gone for a range of 10 o’clock-5 o’clock.

Lastly for our oscillators, add in the Noise oscillator with envelope 1 controlling the amplitude. We want a blast of noise at the transient of the sound but having too much noise in the sustain stage will quickly muddy the sound up. I’ve chosen the Tape Hiss option here.


Top layer in Massive:

Let’s turn our attention to the filter. I’ve left the settings intact but changed the algorithm to Bandpass. This works by isolating a band of frequencies, leaving us with a more aggressive but thinner sound perfect for our top layer. Set the Bandwidth and Resonance to about 9 o’clock.
In the voicing tab change the number of Unison Voices from 1 to 4 and enable the Pitch Cutoff and Pan Position, adjusting their values to taste. Pitch Cutoff will add some detuning to each voice and Pan Position will spread those around the stereo spectrum. Now our layer is starting to sound the part.


Top layer with modulation:


There’s not much more to do but turn our attention to the FX tab. I’m adding in a Classic Tube and Dimension Expander while shelving off some bottom end in the EQ tab. Keep a close eye on the Master as all of these distortions and unison effects can easily clip the sound unpleasantly.

Processing Layers Together

Now we have our three layers in place, we need to think about separating them so there’s as little overlap as necessary and each part occupies its own space in the frequency and stereo spectrum. As our sub is fine let’s start with the mid layer. Solo it and add Live’s EQ Eight.

I’ve high-pass filtered it fairly abruptly at 80Hz using the 48dB/Oct slope: this stops it interfering with our sub. I’m also going to add some compression to even out the level a little more and some limiting to deliberately clip the layer. You could add more distortions and modulations here but I’m going to reserve them for our top layer.

Solo the top and add an EQ Eight. Add Live’s Pitch plug-in from the MIDI Effects tab and tune it up an octave. This will transpose any incoming MIDI up an octave automatically – a great time-saving device! I’m again going to high-pass the sound, this time using the standard 12dB/Oct slope and high-passing at 180Hz.

I’ve also added Live’s Auto Filter (adding some extra low-pass filter envelope modulation), the Simple Delay (using short unsynced values of 30 and 80ms), some Reverb, Compression and Limiting. Here’s the top layer on its own now.

FX 1

Top layer with FX: 

Lastly I’m going to map the levels of each chain to a Macro, allowing me easier control over each layer, and the dry/wet of the top layer’s FX to my last remaining Macro.

MAcros final

Multi-Band and Parallel Processing

Now our synth is balanced internally we can think about processing it as a whole. The way Ableton nests Instrument Racks is clever but it means in order to contain any effects we now apply with our three existing layers we’ll need to re-group (cmd + G / ctrl + G) our current three layers into another Instrument Rack. Alternatively add an Audio Effects Rack after.

While we can use filters or EQ to separate frequency bands, it’s safer to use Live’s Multiband Dynamics as the bands are phase coherent and will minimise the amount og delay to any part of the spectrum. I’ve added three chains, each with a Multiband Dynamics, each soloing one of the Low, Medium and High bands. Ensure you label your chains for ease of use at a later date.

Now we can process these bands individually and adjust their crossover if you choose. STart by adding a Utility to the Low chain and reducing the width to 0%. It’s recommended to keep your bottom end in mono for nearly all applications and this plug-in can ensure that. I’ve also added Live’s Compressor with a slow attack and release with high ratio to tame the dynamic range a bit.

Mutliband 1

On the Mids chain I’ve adjusted the high crossover band to 1.5 kHz to narrow this range a little. Adding another Utility I’ve kept the Width at 60% and added some more compression with a much faster attack and release to match the quick envelope modulation of this band.

Lastly in the High band I’ve adjusted the Width of a Utility to 120% to spread the sound a little and added some light low-pass filtering around 8.5 kHz. After the Audio Effects Rack you can add in any further EQ you might want (to balance the patch specifically with your track), any compression, limiting and sidechain compression.

The patch is designed to be a jack of all trades and will require some tweaking of the Massive instruments and processing to get it to sit just right, so be liberal with adjustments. Hopefully this acts as a springboard to inspire you to create your own bass sounds too. Download the project used in this tutorial here.


The post Creating the Perfect Bass Sound appeared first on Point Blank’s Online Magazine.

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Dubspot Radio Rewind: Wiseacre (Emerald Isle Dream Bump Mix)

This episode of Dubspot Radio hits the play button on a soulful diversely influenced house set mixed up by the Venice California native, Wiseacre.


With an appreciation for fine tunes ranging from the Balkans to Brooklyn, Wiseacre pushes for a genreless and unsegmented party scene. The 20 year Venice resident has approached that vision through the parties he’s co-founded in LA such as Funky In The Middle, Sundaze, and the underground event theLIFT. In 2003, Eric Tucker aka Wiseacre set aside his career as a talented commercial and fine art photographer to pursue life behind as a DJ. Since then, he’s either booked or played with a wide cast of people like Louie Vega, Black Coffee, Mr. Scruff, Rich Medina, Dam Funk, and DJ Sabo. Although California is his home, he lives a bi-costal existence while working to open a club in New York’s Lower East Side with Nickodemus called Louie and Chan. To offer a taste of his DJ sets, Wiseacre has shared his new Emerald Isle Dream Bump mixtape with Dubspot featuring a mix of soulful diversely influenced house music.




1. Slow Hands – Rough Patch
2. Locussolus – Next to You
3. Johnwaynes – The One
4. Michael J Collins – Nothing Wrong With Holding On
5. Roska, Jamie George – Wonderful Day (Dave Nada Moombahton Edit)
6. Randolph – Leanin (Deetron Remix)
7. Johnwaynes – Get Up
8. A Mountain of One – Bones (Time & Space Machine Remix)
9. Sect – Man of Wisdom
10. Kasper Bjorke – Heaven
11. Kaine – Love Saves The Day (Soul Clap Remix)
12. Bad Rabbits – She’s Bad (Gadi Mizrahi, Soul Clap Remix)
13. Henrik Schwarz – Once Again (Soulphiction Remix)
14. Discodeine – Falkenberg (Pilooski Remix)
15. Ilhan Ersahin – Bosphorus (Etienne Jaumet Remix)
16. Phil Weeks – That’s All Right With Me


About Wiseacre

Born into the lovely environs of suburban lands lying to the East of Los Angeles and raised on frozen food, meat, and the religious right, Eric Tucker aka Wiseacre finds himself happily free yet equally inspired by it all. While living in the Seaside Republic of Venice for 20 years, Wiseacre established a successful career as a commercial/fine art photographer. In 2003, he decided to pick up some vinyl, a couple of turntables, a mixer, two speakers, and a few friends to begin the labor of love we call “throwin’ parties.” Since then, Wiseacre has put his love for photography on hold to co-created three very successful LA parties, FUNKY IN THE MIDDLE, CUSTOM SUNDAZE, and now theLIFT, which after one year has expanded to San Francisco and New York. He has hosted and played along side such talents as Gilles Peterson, Danny Krivit, Nickodemus, Louie Vega, Joe Clausell, Osunlade, Black Coffee, Mark Farina, Mr. Scruff, Quantic, Marques Wyatt, King Britt, Mad Mats, Ron Trent, Doc Martin, Simbad, Nick Curly, Domu, Karizma, Ian Friday, Rich Medina, Spinna, Boddhi Satva, Dam Funk, Cut Chemist, Recloose, Makossa + Megablast, Dj Garth, J Rocc, Mark Rae, Federico Aubele, Dj Vadim, Mark De Clive Lowe, Vikter Duplaix, 7 Samurai, Daz-I-Kue, Dj Day, And The One And Only Jeremy Sole. Currently, Wiseacre is living a bi-coastal existence between LA and NYC. While theLIFT continues to thrive in Los Angeles and beyond, he is also simultaneously designing and building a restaurant/club called LOUIE and CHAN in the lower East side of New York. Here Wiseacre continues his quest to bridge genres of music and people, creating a scene that is not exclusive or segmented, but rather one that simply appreciates “fine tunes.” The selections Wiseacre chooses to share are deep and wide from Brooklyn to the Balkans and South America to Sweden ranging from house to disco to afro-latin broken beat and dub. In short, Wiseacre loves life and adores his daughter Zoe.


DJ Extensive Program

Immerse yourself in the complete art of DJing: from the fundamentals of beatmatching and mixing to using effects and programming extended club sets. Whether you’re a beginner wanting to learn fundamentals or a seasoned pro looking to take your talent to the next level, our curriculum is designed to accommodate all skill levels and styles of music. This comprehensive DJ program covers everything from basic mixing to advanced digital DJing with both Serato Scratch Live and Traktor Scratch Pro.

Click here to view the embedded video.

About This Program

At Dubspot you’ll be working at personal student workstations equipped with industry standard and cutting-edge technology: Technics SL-1200 / 1210 series turntables, Pioneer CDJs, Pioneer DJM or Rane TTM mixers, Apple iMacs and MacBook Pros, Native Instruments’ Traktor Scratch Pro, Serato Scratch Live, vinyl, CDs, timecode, and MIDI controllers.

Our instructors teach you the necessary techniques and draw on their vast collective experience to give you insight into the mindset, workflow, and art of DJing. Graduates of the DJ Extensive Program will have an opportunity to perform at an event in a New York City venue, organized and promoted by Dubspot together with you and your fellow students. At Dubspot, we want you to do more than just learn. We want you to be great at doing what you love. Let us help you get there!

What’s Included

  • DJ Level 1: Rookie Sessions | Essentials I
  • DJ Level 2: Phrase Mixing | Essentials II
  • DJ Level 3: Beyond The Blend | Intermediate Skills
  • DJ Level 4: Preparation | DJ Psychology
  • DJ Level 5: Classroom to the Club | Advanced Techniques I
  • DJ Level 6: Club to the World | Advanced Techniques II

Additional Information

Visit the DJ course page for detailed information on this program here.

If you have questions, please call 877.DUBSPOT or send us a message.


The post Dubspot Radio Rewind: Wiseacre (Emerald Isle Dream Bump Mix) appeared first on Dubspot Blog.

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Point Blank Launches the BA (Hons) Music Production & Sound Engineering Degree

This week was an important one for Point Blank: we launched our brand new flagship degree course, the BA (Hons) Music Production & Sound Engineering Degree. Validated by Middlesex University, the degree is based on our comprehensive Complete Master Diploma and has taken over a year to develop with PB working closely with leading industry figures to ensure the degree delivers an intensive, immersive and practical education across all areas of music production and sound engineering. With modules covering production, remixing, sound design, studio and live sound engineering, DJing, mastering, how to manage your career (or manage others), making music for TV, film and games, Pro Tools and more, there’s no better – or thorough – foundation for your career in the music industry. What’s more, we’re offering 10% off all degree and diploma courses until the end of May – meaning you save £3,000! Simply enter code ‘PB10’ on the enrol page to activate your discount.

PB Studio 2The BA (Hons) Music Production & Sound Engineering degree is practical, intensive and covers all area of music production and sound engineering

Every aspect of the BA (Hons) Music Production & Sound Engineering degree has been developed and optimised to guarantee it meets rigorous academic standards. Quality checking and reviews with Middlesex University ensures these standards are on a level with the top universities in the world while the creation of a brand new Virtual Learning Environment offers support to students in their studies and gives a blended approach of online and face-to-face learning. Furthermore, we have secured extra resources –  we’re the only school in the world to have a SSL Duality Delta mixing console, for example – to ensure that we are, quite simply, the best equipped music school out there. What’s more, students are able to choose an accelerated two-year pathway, meaning you have the potential to land your dream job in the industry a year ahead of your peers. The focus on creative music composition and production, delivered with our industry-leading resources, makes this a unique way of achieving your degree in two-years.

PB Studio 1 SSLPoint Blank is the only school in the world to have a 48-channel SSL Duality Delta mixing console 

Our instructors are music industry professionals with a demonstrable real-world experience at the very highest levels of the profession. Sound Engineering instructor Ganesh Singaram has worked with Kanye West, Swedish House Mafia and Pharell, Engineering/Mixing instructor Max Heyes’ credits include Paul Weller, Oasis, Primal Scream, Jamiroquai and Massive Attack and our Music Composition instructor Kevin Kerrigan has worked with Bjork, Gwen Stefani, Eurythmics and Kylie. This is just a small snapshot of the experience our instructors bring to the course, elevating study far beyond the studio and practise room. Our Link Tutor at Middlesex – who has assisted in the development of the course – is Marcus O Dair, half of the Ninja Tune-signed band Grasscut. What’s more, with 24 hours of classroom time per week this course boasts more hours spent with your tutor than any other course in the whole of the UK, meaning you really get to make the most of what they have to offer.

Point Blank 2 2016 - 217Our instructors have demonstrable, real-world experience gathered at the very highest tier of the music industry

Our Complete Master Diploma graduates have gone onto amazing things and we can’t wait to see where the BA (Hons) Music Production & Sound Engineering degree will take our students. Award-winning Bollywood composer Sanchit Balhara, tropical house superstar Felix Jaehn, and French deep house producer Cedric Steinmyller, of Klingande fame, all found acclaim after studying on our Complete Master Diploma course – are you next? If you’re interested in being the first intake of this unique and exciting new opportunity, go to the course page and Enrol Now. You will need to complete an application form and send it to the Admissions Team to start the process. The course commences in September and is limited availability, so complete your application form before spaces run out – and don’t forget to take advantage of our 10% discount until March 31st! To claim this discount, enter code ‘PB10’ when enrolling.

Register to Access Free Courses, Plugins, Projects, Samples & More

When you register with Point Blank, you access an array of free sounds, plugins, online course samples, access to our social network Plugged In and much more. Simply register below and visit our Free Stuff page to get your hands on a range of exclusive music-making tools and tutorials provided by the team. Fill your boots!


The post Point Blank Launches the BA (Hons) Music Production & Sound Engineering Degree appeared first on Point Blank’s Online Magazine.

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