Subliminal Automation Hollywood FL

By applying what I call "subliminalautomation," you can hold listeners' attentionwithout resorting to abrupt shifts. The idea isto use very small brush strokes to keep a partchanging continuously but subtly.

Luzerne Music Center
5099 N. Dixie Highway #263
Oakland Park, FL
Barry University (Barry University - School of Arts and Sciences)
(305) 899-3100
11300 NE 2nd Avenue
Miami Shores, FL
Asm Music Schools Inc
(954) 680-9005
8640 Griffin Rd
Cooper City, FL

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Hapco Inc
(305) 829-8728
PO Box 680872
Miami, FL

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World Of Music
(954) 486-9197
4329 Rock Island Rd
Lauderhill, FL

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Luzerne Music Center
(877) 267-8919
Oakland Park FL
Oakland Park, FL

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Anthony Allman School Of Music Inc
(954) 964-0065
6310 Pembroke Rd
Miramar, FL

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Aventura Vocal Performing Arts
(305) 936-9795
18822 NE 29th Ave
Miami, FL

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Music Education Ctr
(954) 349-3511
90 Indian Trce
Weston, FL

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Morla Music Academy
(954) 255-2722
10424 W Atlantic Blvd
Coral Springs, FL

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Subliminal Automation

As one of Brian Eno’s ObliqueStrategies cards states, “Repetition is a formof change.” For dance music, this isn’t merely astrategy, but a mantra. However, the fact of thematter is — unless your audience’s intoxicantsare extremely good — too much repetitiongets old fast. Too little, and you risk breaking the spell you’re casting on the dance floor.

The most common technique for keeping a riff interesting is to dramatically morph the synths and effects, creating crescendos andpeaks to enhance the listener’s journey. Thisis well-suited to progressive dance, sometypes of house, and of course, trance. Butdrastic or sweeping changes don’t always mesh with the tech and minimal genres.

By applying what I call “subliminalautomation,” you can hold listeners’ attention without resorting to abrupt shifts. The idea isto use very small brush strokes to keep a part changing continuously but subtly. To illustratethis, we’ll automate an analog-style square wave riff over a beat from Loopmasters’ JoeyYoungman library. The end result is a cyclingriff that keeps tickling the ear, while leaving sonic space for embellishments in the drumsand other synth bits.

0.001_StrobeStep 1. Create a simple riff with a sound that’s not too complex and has a bitof room to morph subtly. Here’s the isolated square wave riff, created withFXpansion’s Strobe synth from DCAM Synth Squad (reviewed Nov. ’09).

0.002_FilterAutoStep 2. Let’s start with a touch of filter automation. Inthis example (using Ableton Live), we’ve lowered thecutoff ever so slightly, then put a slight peak at themiddle of the eight-bar loop.

0.003_SawAutoStep 3. To change the wave shape slightly, we’llblend in a bit of sawtooth twice, with peaks atbar 3 and bar 7.

0.004_SustainAutoStep 4. Another useful parameter to automate is theenvelope sustain level. Large shifts are great forbuilding peaks and crescendos. A tiny amount addsjust a dash of flavor.

0.005_NoiseAutoStep 5. As a final touch, we’ll blend in a bit of noise. Aswith sustain and filter, a little goes a long way. For thepeaks, you can get a lot crazier, as we’ve discussed inprevious columns.

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