dubstep explained

Discussion in 'Production' started by audiokid, Nov 17, 2011.

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  1. Launch Pad

    Launch Pad Active Member

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    As the manager of a Dubstep label (Urban Sickness Audio), I'd just like to say that the public conception of this genre seems to amount solely to the so called wobbly bass lines and growling Skrillex synths.

    As with all dance music genres, there is so much more to it than that. Some producers are actually adding real musical content to their production :)

    And yes, everyone seems to want a Dubstep remix these days and we've seen a massive increase in tunes from our catalogue being licensed to TV shows and commercials thanks to artists like Skrillex and Flux Pavilion.

    Weather it likes it or not, Dubstep owes some of it's trademarks to Drum & Bass music while it's origins lie with UK artists such as Benga and Scream who kicked of the Dubstep scene a number of years ago in the UK with tunes that where very different from what we call Dubstep today.
     
  2. audiokid

    audiokid Chris Staff

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    Very interesting. Would it be possible to ask you for an an outstanding example of a wobbly bass line and growling Skrillex synth track, something that will stream easily for us to listen to?

    From a musicians POV, with 18 years of touring under my belt I am chuckling over this. When I first started playing music back in the 70's I would have never thought a statement like this would have become a reality. However, as years passed and I evolved into an electronic techno artist, I get it loud and clear. Can you please elaborate more on what "real musical content" is to you and the creative process? Are they using musicians and how is the creative process between programming and real performance produced?
     
  3. Launch Pad

    Launch Pad Active Member

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    Here's a tune you might like - Illicit - District - YouTube

    It mixes some classic wobble bass lines (wow, I hate that term so much) with some original melodies and riffs.


    I think in general to much fuss is being made about Dubstep, as if it's supposed to live up to something.

    It's simply another genre of dance music.


    No one makes a fuss over Drum & Bass music for example which has been around for nearly twenty years.
     
  4. Launch Pad

    Launch Pad Active Member

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    I should also point out that Dubstep's image is being somewhat destroyed thanks to the millions of bedroom producers who make these tunes that are full of Skrillex noises.

    Lots of growls and womps and distorted synths with no real hooks or structure in them.

    Skrillex does that kind of music very well but the many imitators of his sound are quite literally bringing down the scene.
     
  5. bishopdante

    bishopdante Guest

    Scrillex is not the good stuff, he's the buy-in sellout stuff.

    Got free tickets to one of his shows in London, Camden Palais. It was terrible, full of super-keen early 30s office workers with their pot bellies poking out of their brand new dedmau5 t-shirt, dancing like stiff zombies, and by about halfway through the place reeked of vomit, absolutely eyewatering. These people all bought 4 shots of some nightmare discount blue-dyed synthetic spirits in their media-induced excitement and then spewed on somebody's back, at the bar it was like a bunch of geese except the sound they made was "shots... shots... you getting shots? we're getting shots. some shots? shots. Yea more shots. shots... shots..." while Sonny Moore jumped about onstage in some form of lycra getup like a 12 year old kid doing a spider man impression, wacking about in the periphery of his laptop, not actually doing much with it, basically a DJ, with a few aides with bigger laptops working away bored & busy in the wings. Perhaps they were controlling the visuals? Who knows, they looked pathological, Mr Scrillex looked like he was on some pretty seriously soul-eradicating pharmaceuticals with lots of energy but not so much feeling. Apparently he's some screamo character who toured a fair bit on his teenie-tour signed to a major, probably backed by a fashion label doing product placement or somesuch post-CD business dreck, and he screamed too much, so he got polyps on his larynx, and thus had to find a new route through the record company maze. Anyhow, the whole scene made Vanilla Ice in his heyday look cool. And then you can talk about his cheesy as hell pitch-shifted mickey mouse voice trance techno bridge sections *repeatedly* zapping you with horrible eventide-harmonised "this... is... scrillex...". It pretty much sucked. When he decided to drop his idea of techstep d'n'b on everybody, and one in ten of the audience fell over, legless, having some sort of music induced fit, and a few more people spewed on the carpet, I had to go. I ended up lurking on the smoking balcony swearing and muttering, and I've quit smoking!

    To me, Scrillex is a form of really strange house music, like what happens if you merge tech-house with aqua, and then stick a stock wobbler heavy metal bassline under it.

    In 2004, skream sounded quite grimey, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ibsZMG1kUFk, and maybe 5 years ago, there wasn't such a cliché'd idea of what the genre was about, and people were putting out some fresh sounds: Boxcutter - Glyphic - YouTube guy is from Northern Ireland. What's interesting to me is that dubstep is one of the first all-digital globalised internet music genres, it kinda got spun out of UK Grime, but it's very much a bedroom producer thing, and its growth has been fairly international. What's funny is that today it's become a youtube comments argument about what it is and isn't, a bounty hunting argument about authenticity, which I find rather amusing.

    Every genre goes from breaking through as something fresh and innovative that strikes a chord with people, and then being recycled as a cliché and stuck on sneaker adverts. Same happened to jungle/drum'n'bass. It takes maybe 3 years for everything to get played out, at which point you're dealing with a sticky wicket, an audience with aggravated preconceptions. The internet will probably make the process of trend appropriation/fatigue a bit faster. The internet in 2004 had very different capabilities. No youtube etc.

    Wikipedia article here: Dubstep - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
     
  6. audiokid

    audiokid Chris Staff

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    This guy does it pretty awesome. I'm really glad I took the time over the last year to update my skills. I get it now thumb

     
  7. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

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    One can only hope. :tongue:
     
  8. audiokid

    audiokid Chris Staff

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    hehe!

    Its finding its way into commercial music now.
     
  9. RemyRAD

    RemyRAD Member

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    And like everything else as uninspiring as this is, it too shall disappear. I mean just how many talented computer sequencers do you know? Roboto, is all it has to offer. You can only dance to this stuff if you are drunk and suffering from vertigo. And he looks like he needs to go to the bathroom something fierce? You could just picture his mother off-camera asking him if he needs to go? I think he should go... to the South Pole for a couple of years? Where he'll learn how to move around a little more to keep warmer. I don't care how much he walks backwards on the moon, he's not going to bump into Michael Jackson anymore.

    Chris there are some things worth walking away from and this is one of them. I think they meant to call it Dog Step? You know you need to make sure you don't step in that stuff. And it looks like he's moving around considerably to avoid getting some dog step on the bottom of his shoe? So I think that's just a typo that somebody made with their thumb on their smart phone when they mistakenly looked both ways before crossing the street? We can only hope that other folks won't make that same mistake in the future by looking up? Not only are people losing the fine art of actually playing instruments together, well, they are also losing the ability to converse if it's not through both of their thumbs. This is not progress, not by a long shot. You can vacillate like lemmings to the next thing every 10-year-old kid wants. When are you going to do something for the adults? Children don't need quality music or production. And you want to lower yourself to that? That would be like your mother trying to sing death metal arias on the stage at the Metropolitan Opera. Ain't going to happen as there are some things which must be traditionally supported. I mean dumb step can't even be danced to by somebody on some good drugs. It sounds like it's all designed for Amy Winehouse? And designed for her current style... which is dead. So is Jim Morrison and Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin and you haven't exactly heard those styles reappear after their death. And when folks may get wise to the idea they'd rather hear somebody singing something or actually play something. There is nothing inspiring about listening to a computer sequencer playback its numbers. About as exciting as a metronome. So why do you buy into these squeaky small subcategories of subcategories of what some people sort of consider musical entertainment?

    Genius has left the world. And it may never come back for an encore? I'd be more worried about that. Just because children don't want to eat their vegetables does that mean they shouldn't?

    Where's the beef?
    Mx. Remy Ann David
     
  10. audiokid

    audiokid Chris Staff

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    Thanks for caring but I'm a Mix addict, I'll mix "almost" anything you throw at me and my addiction is getting worse. I'm coming apart at the seams with sheer joy lol

    I actually love the bass in all this, its a rush getting down low. Musically, I'd rather be listening to other stuff but mixing is fun regardless of the style. Speed metal and hip hop, well, not sure on that though...

    Having a 6, 10 and 14 year old forces me to listen to pop music so its all part of the flow around here.
     
  11. LooP Library

    LooP Library Active Member

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    I always assumed that Dubstep, because of the way it all sounds to me, was primarily defined by a particular piece of software required to make it. Now as a Cool Edit Pro 1.2 fan (still use it always will and my muso nephew continues to remind me of his opinions here, nuff said) and not a fan of the pluggin stuff I really am not informed, but even if you use re-cycling software, you will still need to account for the varying distorded fx parts, that to me, just sound like they are derived from the same origins regardless of the original sample...

    Now as much as i love Dubstep, and i do, i can honestly say, i cannot dissect this music mentally, and then replicate it like i can for most songs i hear. I am sure this is a software derived sound. What Software though, I really dont know...
     
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    The New AT5047 Premier Studio Microphone Purity Transformed

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