Layering a House Kick Drum
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Old 10-07-2016, 08:25 PM   #1
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Layering a House Kick Drum

Hi All!

I understand you need to layer 3 kick drum samples, and extract certain parts of those samples to make a really good kick drum with a good timbre to it.

Can anybody give me any tips on how to do this for a house kick drum sound?

Not just the technique either, I would like some guidance in knowing what to listen for in drum sample selection too.

Thanks!

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Old 10-07-2016, 08:57 PM   #2
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Re: Layering a House Kick Drum

Who told you that? Get a good drum synth and/or samples.

It makes sense to layer when it's called for, but it's all a question of what you want to achieve.

If you just want a standout kick, you don't need any of that.

Look into saturation and compression as well as side chain processing. EQ would also be helpful. And get some good samples. If your sample is shit, everything you do to it won't make a difference.

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Old 10-07-2016, 09:02 PM   #3
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Re: Layering a House Kick Drum

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Originally Posted by liquid_air View Post
Who told you that? Get a good drum synth and/or samples.

It makes sense to layer when it's called for, but it's all a question of what you want to achieve.

If you just want a standout kick, you don't need any of that.

Look into saturation and compression as well as side chain processing. EQ would also be helpful. And get some good samples. If your sample is shit, everything you do to it won't make a difference.
What do you need it to sound like? What about what you have isn't right? Have you looked at it in a spectrum analyzer?

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Old 10-07-2016, 09:15 PM   #4
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Re: Layering a House Kick Drum

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Originally Posted by liquid_air View Post
What do you need it to sound like? What about what you have isn't right? Have you looked at it in a spectrum analyzer?
I've heard it and read it a few times. Layering. Some producers spend hours just layering one kick drum, then have a folder of a few nice kick drums.

I just think my kicks drums don't sound big and/or unique, or seem to lack oomph sometimes.

Yeah I have heard of a spectrum analyser. What about one? lol!
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Old 10-07-2016, 09:35 PM   #5
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Re: Layering a House Kick Drum

Look for a sample with robust low end and as much oomph as you can find and start from there. I've not much looked into layering, but the examples I have heard use layers from different frequency ranges. That is you take a layer from <100 Hz, one from 100-300 Hz, and one >300 Hz. Add them together, add some saturation and compression. I've made those frequencies up, but that's kind of what I heard on some tracks.

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Old 10-07-2016, 09:55 PM   #6
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Re: Layering a House Kick Drum

Here's what I'm talking about:


Also, from working with a drum synth I learned how useful sub 100 Hz sine wave addition can be.

See here http://stimresp.wordpress.com/2012/0...-drums-part-i/

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Old 10-07-2016, 11:54 PM   #7
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Re: Layering a House Kick Drum

You can layer as much or as little as you want, TBH. Sometimes a single kick works, and sometimes not.

Sometimes you might even like your own synthesized kick enough to use it alone.

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Old 11-07-2016, 12:51 AM   #8
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Re: Layering a House Kick Drum

Edit: essentially what liquid air said but oh well.

---

Okay so on layering, a kick drum is comprised of three parts...

Top end / click
Body
Bottom end / sub

You don't have to layer anything to get a decent kick. That said, when I take the time to do it I always get a better kick then when using just a single sample. I usually only wind up layering two. Go to your sample folder and find a kick with quite a bit of top end punch / high frequency information and eq most of the low end out, maybe boost the midrange a db or two. Now find a subby kick with quite a bit of low end and eq out the top, maybe boost 80 hz just a bit. Group and compress then eq the kicks again on the group / bus channel. Cut everything below 75 hz give it a little high shelf of a couple dB from somewhere in the middle of the rage and lightly saturate.

If you have chosen your samples properly that should give you a much better kick than whatever it was you dropped in to begin with when you were working with only a single kick sample. This gives you much greater control and a better ability to shape the tone of your kick to fit the track.

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Old 11-07-2016, 01:51 AM   #9
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Re: Layering a House Kick Drum

The reason I've not done it much is the ability to use FabFilter Saturn to do a lot of the above. Sidechaining if need be. Since Saturn has the ability to generate envelopes, it gives you a lot of control over transients, but it can be nicely paired with the FabFilter multi band compressor MB-Pro. As any proper distortion plugin, Saturn allows to adjust the output, which gives it some functionality of a limiter (technically a clipper, but that's almost like mincing words).

With the samples that come with Maschine Expansion packs and Saturn I've really not had much of a need to layer much. Using a hardware drum synth is a different story.

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Old 11-07-2016, 02:53 AM   #10
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Re: Layering a House Kick Drum

^Yeah. Saturn. Best effect plugin there is in my opinion. It goes on literally everything.

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Old 11-07-2016, 03:12 AM   #11
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Re: Layering a House Kick Drum

Well, it's great, but put U-He Satin on an analog emulation such as Diva. It's just gorgeous.

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Old 15-07-2016, 12:23 AM   #12
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Re: Layering a House Kick Drum

Thanks for your responses guys.

I'm liking the look of Sample Magic's Stacker plug-in for this.
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Old 15-07-2016, 12:33 AM   #13
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Re: Layering a House Kick Drum

i used to be obsessive about finding ways to make tthe perfect kick drum. and now i hate to say it cos it's a shitty branded thing but... bear with me... nickty romero kick is just the best kick synth i have ever used. genuinely, it's so versatile, so tune-able to an accuracy you wouldn't believe or find useful. i wouldn't say it if i didn't mean it. it's transformed my kick drums completely to a way and standard i always stived to achive and i do it so easily now. i know this sounds like some cheesy ad, it isn't. it just really is that good
ignore the named branding, try it out at least and see what i mean, also hint - have th e velocity hit at around 50 for it's notes or it will start to add clipping to the kicks and be over loud.
As i just found out, there is now Kick 2, (non nicky romero name but V2 of this amazing kick synth)
https://www.sonicacademy.com/products/kick-2



Last edited by Benwaa; 15-07-2016 at 12:49 AM..
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Old 15-07-2016, 05:03 AM   #14
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Re: Layering a House Kick Drum

Meh

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Old 15-07-2016, 05:35 AM   #15
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Re: Layering a House Kick Drum

Quote:
Originally Posted by Benwaa View Post
i used to be obsessive about finding ways to make tthe perfect kick drum. and now i hate to say it cos it's a shitty branded thing but... bear with me... nickty romero kick is just the best kick synth i have ever used. genuinely, it's so versatile, so tune-able to an accuracy you wouldn't believe or find useful. i wouldn't say it if i didn't mean it. it's transformed my kick drums completely to a way and standard i always stived to achive and i do it so easily now. i know this sounds like some cheesy ad, it isn't. it just really is that good
ignore the named branding, try it out at least and see what i mean, also hint - have th e velocity hit at around 50 for it's notes or it will start to add clipping to the kicks and be over loud.
As i just found out, there is now Kick 2, (non nicky romero name but V2 of this amazing kick synth)
https://www.sonicacademy.com/products/kick-2


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D9wVZGpzktc
Funny you mention that. I've been considering it for a while now but, like you say, the branding just fucked it right off for me. I think I'll seriously consider it as my next plugin purchase. I used to be highly against things like this, again branding, but over the last year I've really made an effort to break through that bull shit and just realize if is serves the music, it serves the music.

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Old 15-07-2016, 07:44 AM   #16
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Re: Layering a House Kick Drum

Quote:
Originally Posted by RFJ View Post
Funny you mention that. I've been considering it for a while now but, like you say, the branding just fucked it right off for me. I think I'll seriously consider it as my next plugin purchase. I used to be highly against things like this, again branding, but over the last year I've really made an effort to break through that bull shit and just realize if is serves the music, it serves the music.


From what I've seen of version 2 so far I'll be investing in that come the next week
Or two, knowing how amazing the original works and to see the extra flexibility with the ease of the original, it's perfect for me. Plus they dropped the Nicky Romero bit too now
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Old 15-07-2016, 09:19 AM   #17
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Re: Layering a House Kick Drum

i heard that common technique is that you use synth kik below mid ranges and acoustic sample above mid to get natural sounding yet synth- bassy sound

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Old 15-07-2016, 01:06 PM   #18
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Re: Layering a House Kick Drum

Kick 2 does look amazing. Considering this a lot.
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Old 20-07-2016, 06:47 AM   #19
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Re: Layering a House Kick Drum

Quote:
Originally Posted by Benwaa View Post
From what I've seen of version 2 so far I'll be investing in that come the next week
Or two, knowing how amazing the original works and to see the extra flexibility with the ease of the original, it's perfect for me. Plus they dropped the Nicky Romero bit too now
Spent some time with the demo of Kick 2 today. Hell of a thing it is. Definitely going to be buying it post-haste. The way it handles tuning the kick drum and the precise way in which it lays out the notes on the pitch envelope is really handy. Totally shape-able, great sound. Wish I wouldn't have dropped 30 bucks on some kicks 60 days ago. Such is life I guess.

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Old 13-08-2016, 03:44 PM   #20
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Re: Layering a House Kick Drum

Sonicacademy kick for precisely pitched (tonal) tail and Addictive Drums 2 for initial punch. Addictive Drums also gives you ability to layer some "room" and "overhead" reveb on not of it for natural coloration.

Also one trick i found recently, you could use EQ on reverb to boost frequencies which fit your scale. I.e. if you're using Gmin you could slightly boost D (146 Hz) G (196 Hz) etc. And cut frequencies which not fit your scale using notch filters on EQ.

Same for whole layered Kick, in case of house music when you'll play snare/clap at the same time with Kick you probably need to cut some Kick frequencies to leave space for snare/clap. Also move snare and clap out of the grid to avoid initial transients overlap each other. Since House Kick in most cases will have decent "click" on top you could just increase attack on snare/clap samples.

Your kick could sound shitty alone, but when it play together with bass, snare and percussin it could give impression of such a fat sound you could heard in tracks of top producers. Just do some experiments with track you like, bounce it into your DAW and look into the waveforms to find out how many miliseconds you need for Kick punch,, when bass sound started and so on, how snare and clap layered on top of it.

Last edited by istinspring; 13-08-2016 at 04:03 PM..

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