Skrillex on Ableton Live, plug-ins, production and more

Discussion in 'Electronic' started by Von_Steyr, May 9, 2017.

  1. Von_Steyr

    Von_Steyr Guest

    Somehow went from gearlsutz to this. I think his mixes are punchy, he also does the whole process by himself including mastering, on a macbook pro and a pair of krk rockit 5s.
    Sure dynamics and all of that are debatable but its just such a genre that i dont have a problem with.
    [​IMG]
    Dubstep producer Sonny Moore, AKA Skrillex, is riding the crest of a wave at the moment, and he recently spoke to Computer Music Specials magazine from his tour-bus-cum-studio and gave them some insight into how he creates those speaker-shattering basslines and incendiary beats.

    Check out the interview below; for more producer chat - including interviews with Noisia, Carl Craig, Steve Lawler and more - and tutorials, check out the 50th issue of Computer Music Specials - Beats & Bass: The Producer's Guide - which is on sale now.

    You're a big Ableton Live enthusiast. What's it got that other DAWs don't?

    "I think, for laptop producers especially, it's just so intuitive in the box. Everything is laid out and you don't have to go searching for things like automation or plug-in parameters - in fact, all the things that are really hard to do in other DAWs. Ableton's just very fluid and quick."

    Your editing skills are all self-taught. Do you think that helps you to do things that perhaps the manuals wouldn't tell you to do?

    "I wouldn't call myself stubborn in an egotistical way but I do like the idea that in the past, what I do would not have been considered production - it would have been considered noise. I like doing things in a very minimal, unconventional way as a personal way of saying, 'Look, I made a career out of carefully and craftfully, though unconventionally, making records on laptops and blown speakers.'"

    What are your top soft synths?

    "My two personal favourites are NI's Massive and FM8. My best monster bass sounds have come from FM8. People think they all come from Massive, but most of the ones that kids online are trying to recreate in Massive are actually from FM8. I also really like Sylenth1, my Tone2 Gladiator and some other granular soft synths as well. That's about it, man.

    "I haven't really expanded too far off FM8 and Massive because I know them so well and can pretty much make any sound I want with them - especially with FM synthesis, which is so basic.

    "I also use Operator a lot, which is Live's FM synthesiser. It's a similar kind of thing, but the matrixes are different so you can make different kinds of sounds."

    What filters and distortion do you use to create the signature Skrillex sound?

    "I really like iZotope Trash, which is a great plug-in for distortion, as is Ohmicide, which I love. It's an absolutely crazy multiband distortion, compression, EQ and filter, which pretty much lets you do anything."

    Do you see programming as a joy or a necessary evil?

    "It's only evil when I work so fast that I haven't properly labelled anything and my project files are all messy. To me it's always a joy to create music no matter what it takes to actually get there. The real evils are always whatever stops you from doing that - like if your CPU is spiking and you have to sit there and bounce all your MIDI to audio. Now that's annoying!

    What type of pitch/formant processing do you use to create your amazing vocal sounds?

    "I use Melodyne for formant stuff and basic pitch, but then I'll print a whole line of audio. To be honest, for all my detailed cuts, chops and actual lines I'll just basically take my vocal or someone else's and process it through Melodyne in a certain way. All the stylistic treatments I do then all come from audio slicing and transposing in Live.

    "Melodyne is crazy - with DNA you can actually take the individual sounds in a chord, isolate them and then change any of them."

    How do you get your beats to drop so damn hard?

    "The easiest trick I use is basically to make sure that whatever sample you're using, it's hitting at 200Hz. Look through a spectrum analyser and you'll see a little 'dunk', and it should sound like that. The beginning transient should look like a brick that kind of bubbles out into the notes, creating a big hit that dominates the whole spectral sphere of your music for that one second. The drum becomes the loudest element in your mix just for an instant."

    Any mastering secrets you can share?

    "Maybe there are magic techniques out there that I don't know about, but I think mastering is something that's given too much credit. I always get people asking me about my mastering techniques and where I get my stuff mastered, but for me it's more about getting the mix right.

    "Mastering, for me, literally consists of an iZotope Maximizer, maybe with a little bit of EQ and harmonic excitement, but that's it. It's all about what makes you smile at the end of day."

     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 9, 2017
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  3. SOKRVT

    SOKRVT Kapellmeister

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  4. Von_Steyr

    Von_Steyr Guest

    That interview is from 2011, so things have probably changed a lot since then.
    Tnx, will check it out.
     
  5. SOKRVT

    SOKRVT Kapellmeister

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    They still work together closely.

    He's the main mixing and mastering engineer behind Jack U.
     
  6. subGENRE

    subGENRE Audiosexual

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    When he was still up and coming, there was a HUGE difference in the sound of his tracks from when he first started out to when he was releasing on deadmau5's label.
     
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  7. Von_Steyr

    Von_Steyr Guest

    You mean for the better or for worse?
     
  8. subGENRE

    subGENRE Audiosexual

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    Definitely better. It had the punch and sizzle of a pro mix. Instead of being just a loud as hell, maybe he showed him a thing or two being a vet or they ran it through a bunch of his analog racks because Deadmau5 has quite a collection he owns an SSL board now too from what I understand
     
  9. Peek

    Peek Member

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    Yes? I would be curious to know what has probably changed since then, excluding the amount and quality of software pluginss, be it worse or better.:chilling:
     
  10. subGENRE

    subGENRE Audiosexual

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    The Mau5trap
    Mau5trap-Slider2-1.jpg
    lucky mofo
     
  11. subGENRE

    subGENRE Audiosexual

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    but skrilly has moved on since then. not on his label anymore. He was a DubStep pioneer but now he's a tropical trap Trend monger
     
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  12. fuziohm

    fuziohm Ultrasonic

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    Well, you are a little bit late :rofl::rofl:
    Skrillex is the best producer in the world and changed the music production making a huge impact in the world.
    And yes he do all his stuff, Luca pretolesi mixed the jack U and major lazer tracks, but not the skrillex stuff.
    The tracks that he maded for justin bieber also he didn't the final mixes like sorry, children, etc.
     
  13. subGENRE

    subGENRE Audiosexual

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    I think you might be confusing "the best" with "the most popular"
    Its all about being at the right place at the right time, and who you know. Talent takes a back seat really. Just look at Beiber like you mentioned. Some say hes the best. (teenaged girls)
     
  14. atreehaseyes

    atreehaseyes Kapellmeister

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    Location:
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    Even though I know the word is used to describe things with a dual function, I still find "tour bus cum studio" slightly amusing.
     
  15. fuziohm

    fuziohm Ultrasonic

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    I know the difference in popular and best. But he is a pretty rare case of popular and "the best", at least in my opinion, not just the best music, but the best technically. i'm not talking about justin bieber, but skrillex.
    I was releasing tracks in beatport since 2008, and than one day he comes and put his entire album in top 10, with a sound that nobody ever heard before, with bases that thousands of people sharing things on internet take about 3 years to remake, with a incredible mix and master.
    Everybody thought he was going to disappear with a while and than he just change all the time making polemic and new things that always becomes a world trend.
    Just imagine making this Production and mix in 2010 using fm8 and massive, without preset banks with a genre that he recreated.




    And yeah man, been the right place and the right time makes all the diference, but this made him find people that give him oportunity to become the best and than he becomes.

    He also was living in favor and owed a lot of money when he did the scary monsters and nice sprites, and this maybe is the reason of his "boom".
     
  16. subGENRE

    subGENRE Audiosexual

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    @fuziohm Yes hunger is always the best motivation. First song I ever heard from skillex was his cinema remix and it did blow me away. Then the stuff he did with Foreign Beggars. My roomate at that time was a gigging local dj. He came home late one night after a gig and was practically yelling to us (I was in the middle of recording a local rapper), "HEY GUYS, YOU GOT TO HEAR THIS NOW!" and I played it on my setup with the sub. We didnt record anymore after that, lol. The engineer in me was trying to figure out how to make those crazy sounds. Good times
     
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  17. fuziohm

    fuziohm Ultrasonic

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    Yeah haha tha was a good time, Cinema was a crazy also.
    Today has a lot of amazing producers, like Flume:wink::wink: etc etc
    But skrillex is skrillex. He is a pretty nice guy also and maybe his show was the best one i've ever seen.
     
  18. Lepow

    Lepow Kapellmeister

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    ok i love you all guys, but he wasnt a dubstep pioneer, think more of people like Benny Ill, Mala, El B, even those who diverted to the refered BROSTEP wich not even he pioneered, back in time, Excision, Rusko, Caspa, Skream, Benga before magnetic man, started those stuff with the saw waveform shit and it went killing the true dubstep (lots of subbase movement and sparsed beats - this saw stuff is for kids) usa got it all wrong since 2006. there was a cannadian movement, i can remember one dj Kuma, Kuva, something like it. ahhh i miss it a lot. all i had before on electronic was Aphex and all warp crew i went searching, and THEN dubstep, burial since beggining (this even skirll tried to bandwagon), ital tek maded some idm dubstep back then, boxcutter had some nice sounds too, ital tek these days made a footwork hybrid still good, but im mentioning baaaaack in the days, plastician was called plastic man, person sound was rammadanman, oh man. sorry i considered it all mine, until it got killed. *tears in my eyes* good to mention iam a poor dude on a poor country hungry for outside culture peace.

    since the toppic is about him, he could be maybe doing what's not worth for him still keep doing it. but anyone could be good at your own craft, some will appreciate, i have bought the Sylvia Massy book and she says hes good, back when he had that emo band, and was still sonny more. equally shit to me anyway.
     
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