The Neve 1073 is a classic mic pre-amp and EQ and can be used to produce very tight kicks and snare sounds together, and very quickly.
Here we’ve loaded in a simple kick-snare loop. There are loads of great software emulations to choose from, but this time we’re opting for the Arturia Pre 1973 Neve emulation.
We’ll start with the kick drum, so solo that track and apply some settings to the three main bands of the Neve emulations. Ignore the low shelf, go for 60Hz or thereabouts on the Low Shelf frequency dial. The difference shouldn’t be too pronounced… yet.
The Presence or hi-mid dial adds a surprising amount of snap to the kick and really makes a difference, so experiment here. We’ve gone for the higher value of 7.2kHz but this will depend on your initial kick sound. Now listen to the kick before and after by bypassing the Arturia; it should sound a lot more present and cut through.
With the snare, the big difference is that you’re going to bring in the high-pass filter at 50Hz at the bottom, thus taking all the muddiness away from the snare sound – and taking it away from the kick’s frequency domain. Already they should sit better together.
Dial up the Low shelf to between 110 and 220Hz depending on your snare sound. Moving to the Presence band, go for 7.2kHz but again, do experiment. Switch the bypass in and out to hear the effect.
If you don't have Arturia's 1073 emulation, Analog Obsession does a great 1073 as part of its BritBundle. Subscribing to its Patreon page will snag you all of its plugins for free. Alternatively, you can snag Acustica Audio's Pink CM for free with any issue of Computer Music Magazine. Try similar settings on your kick and snare; it won’t quite give you the Neve sound but will get close!