VS 12: A Random Pick

Hi. This week (these last couple of weeks actually) I wasn’t feeling overly creative. But I didn’t want to skip my weekly post so I decided to start with a totally random sample out of my library, mess with it and see what happens. It went all right. So without further ado, here’s this week’s random sound:

I have no idea where that sample comes from. And it’s not exactly a high quality one. (You can hear the weird clicks and stuff.) But rules are rules.

To get the ball rolling, I’ve started with pvoc. It’s CDP’s resynthesis process and sometimes can sound pretty cool. I used to use it a lot but recently I haven’t been very lucky. My particular settings here pretty much work like a highpass filter. I’m not really sure if it’s exactly a hipass filter, but to my ears it sounds a bit more natural in this situation.

The tone of the sample is pretty cool here but the clicky business got way worse. Normally, I’d perhaps pick a different sound but because I wanted to stick with my random pick, I needed to improvise.

So I went with blur as it’s a great way to get rid of sharp dynamics (like clicks). After trying a few different settings I went with this setup. It eliminates the clicks while preserving the tonal quality of the sample.

At this point, the ending bit of the sample sounds pretty nice. In a song setting, I’d probably get that part, modify it somehow and use as a little stabby sound or something.

But for the purpose of tutorial I wasn’t quite sure where I was going so I just tried a couple different processes and settled with “modify-stack“. It basically stacks transposed copies of a sound on top of it. And this is how it sounds:

I love the whoosh it adds. But the ending is very abrupt. So after fading out the ending a bit, I went with two serial reverbs to add an artificial tail. I normally suck at doing it, but this time it turned out all right. I also transposed it down 8 semitones.

This sounds all right but I wanted something more so I’ve done more things. First, I’ve convolved it with itself which results in a smoother output. Second, I’ve added a volume LFO and automated the modulation depth gradually down, which adds a little bit of movement. And finally I transposed it down another 10 semitones and added more reverb.

It didn’t end up sounding too impressive on it’s own so I decided to layer the last two steps which worked better. Here’s the final sound:

And that’s it. Pretty fun to compare the beginning sound with the final one! On a final note, I’ve modified the gain levels and did some minor EQ’ing on most steps to keep things under control.

So that’s it for this week, I hope you like it. As always, all sounds are free to download, questions, comments & feedback welcome.