When you’re working on a track, it can be easy to obsess over the most obvious elements – your big bassline, stand-out chord progression or that driving beat. Sometimes though, it’s the smaller, more intricate elements in the background that can make or break a production.
It’s those subtleties we’re focussing on in this month’s cover feature. From carefully-crafted textures that add detail to a track’s backdrop, to intricate effects treatments that can bring stale sounds to life, whether you want to unleash your inner Eno, build soundscapes like Burial or add an epic element to your next club track, we’ve got lots of tips and tutorials to point you in the right direction.
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Jeff Mills – We head to Paris to link up with the Underground Resistance founder and all-round techno icon, as he launches jazz super-group Spiral Deluxe
Martin Buttrich – The highly-respected techno producer and label boss talks latest release, Three Squared EP
Noncompliant – The US DJ-producer formerly known as DJ Shiva shares wisdom from two decades behind the decks
Hervé – Joshua Harvey talks us through the creation of The Count & Sinden’s classic Mystery Jets collab After Dark
Classic Album – UK icons Utah Saints break down their album Two
Atmospheric Sound Design – Focus on the detail with our guide to background textures, ambient backdrops and shimmering effects treatments
Producer’s Guide – We show you how to build full tracks with Maschine Mikro Mk3
Modular Monthly – Logic for audio and CV with Mystic Circuits ANA
Explainer – Everything you need to know about stem mastering
Novation SL MkIII
Electro-Harmonix Mod Rex
Native Instruments Komplete Kontrol A25
Reon Driftbox R
Round-up: Affordable distortion plugins
Analogue Solutions Treadstone Eurorack module
Instruo Cš-L oscillator module
Sample synths – We ready our waveforms and get creative with some sample-based synthesis for a pack stuff with ethereal and otherworldly sounds
Classic House & Techno – We go back to where it all began with a pack of beats and basslines inspired by the early icons of the Detroit and Chicago club scenes
Access the FM sample archive: Download the ‘Archive’ packs and get over 12GB of loops, hits and instruments from our back catalogue of high-quality and royalty-free samples. From vintage synths and drum machines to esoteric instruments and FX – think of it as our best of. All the samples you need to create great music!