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Hi, everybody! (Hi, Doctor Nick!)

I'm new here and I would sincerely appreciate it if you took a listen to my two new tracks:

https://soundcloud.com/maldivir_dragonwitch/per-aspera

https://soundcloud.com/maldivir_dragonwitch/ad-astra


I am especially proud of the second one, but I still think my work lacks a certain "punch" I keep hearing in top-notch chiptune.

For reference, here are two tracks that I LOVE for a while now:

https://soundcloud.com/jaystermusic/run … gh-castles

https://saskrotch.bandcamp.com/track/th … on-of-wind

All and any CC would be very welcome, thank you. smile

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Sweden

Too busy right now to listen to anything, but here's a stab in the dark, because the basic idea and question, I recognize very well.
So how to get *more* of something? you have to do *less* of something else.

The audio frequency range is all about packing things neatly.
It's all push/pull. If you don't have space to do that big gigantic kickdrum, make space for it and it won't get overwhelmed/overwhelm the rest of it.

If this is all outside of what you're asking and you don't get anything from it, I'm sorry. I'll come back later and listen to the stuff. But hope this jogs some kind of idea, at least. smile

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Brittany

my.Explosion is right. You have to give some space to the things you want to be punchy.
You can play with volume (down) of your different sounds/instruments/chans, EQ and compression.

Last edited by Gala (Apr 8, 2019 2:47 pm)

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Milwaukee, WI

Never turn up. Turn down.

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Thanks to everybody for the golden advice, it definitely confirms what I already had in mind for a while now!

Although, I would still love it if you took a listen to my work and to the reference songs, just in case you could share more CC for me to work on. smile

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Sweden

OK, I'm back and I listened to the two.

First off, they're not bad! smile I mean, they're maybe a tad bit long and repetitive, but if that's your vibe and the purpose you're going for I'm not gonna suggest it's necessarily a bad thing.

But yes, mixing really stands out as maybe not being in your best interest. For the first track, "Per Aspera" the bass, and the melody is like the same loudness, I can't comfortably tell them apart automatically, I have to sort of hone in on listening to one or the other. So to bring the bassline down in volume and letting the melody sit much steadier on top of it might work out. It's better on the second track but that still feels like everything is working in the same volume range and sort of fighting each other.

And as for making the overall pop I just think you maybe need to make rhythms that vary more, fills and such, they're very even and static on both tracks so making it more dynamic and making it sometimes do cool stalls or something might work to make the whole track pop more. It doesn't have to become super progressive and weird, but enough to give the listener something new to make them stay.

And bass should of course work tightly with the drums as I'm sure you know, if you get the drums and bass vibing the same rhythm and doing the same kind of variations, sometimes drop one or the other out before a big change, like anticipation, could do the trick.

Also, adding small "risers" before significant changes make things "drop" harder so you can try experimenting with that too. In some of my tracks in the past I've done a tiny riser before every snare drum just to make the snare slap super hard. (This is a place where side chaining could work to one's advantage too.)

It's hard and it's gonna take time to figure out what's best for you, those are at least some of the things I think about when I make tracks, not that my tracks utilize any of this fully, I'm learning too/mostly just goofing around.

But as I sort of touched in my previous post, it's all about building an illusion of something "bigger".
You take something away for a little bit, just subtly, then bring it back full force, you get a surprise-factor. Learn to wield that well and you're gonna be making some ear-candy.

Keep it up! big_smile

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my.Explosion wrote:

OK, I'm back and I listened to the two.

First off, they're not bad! smile I mean, they're maybe a tad bit long and repetitive, but if that's your vibe and the purpose you're going for I'm not gonna suggest it's necessarily a bad thing.

But yes, mixing really stands out as maybe not being in your best interest. For the first track, "Per Aspera" the bass, and the melody is like the same loudness, I can't comfortably tell them apart automatically, I have to sort of hone in on listening to one or the other. So to bring the bassline down in volume and letting the melody sit much steadier on top of it might work out. It's better on the second track but that still feels like everything is working in the same volume range and sort of fighting each other.

And as for making the overall pop I just think you maybe need to make rhythms that vary more, fills and such, they're very even and static on both tracks so making it more dynamic and making it sometimes do cool stalls or something might work to make the whole track pop more. It doesn't have to become super progressive and weird, but enough to give the listener something new to make them stay.

And bass should of course work tightly with the drums as I'm sure you know, if you get the drums and bass vibing the same rhythm and doing the same kind of variations, sometimes drop one or the other out before a big change, like anticipation, could do the trick.

Also, adding small "risers" before significant changes make things "drop" harder so you can try experimenting with that too. In some of my tracks in the past I've done a tiny riser before every snare drum just to make the snare slap super hard. (This is a place where side chaining could work to one's advantage too.)

It's hard and it's gonna take time to figure out what's best for you, those are at least some of the things I think about when I make tracks, not that my tracks utilize any of this fully, I'm learning too/mostly just goofing around.

But as I sort of touched in my previous post, it's all about building an illusion of something "bigger".
You take something away for a little bit, just subtly, then bring it back full force, you get a surprise-factor. Learn to wield that well and you're gonna be making some ear-candy.

Keep it up! big_smile

All of that is really good advice, thank you very much for taking the time to listen - and also to reply and help out! I sincerely appreciate it! smile

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Hey so I’m guessing you mean the kick drum? That’s the only thing that didn’t sound punchy. The advice to subtract everything else other than the thing you want punchy is good. Another thing I can think of is that the punchy kick sound comes from a fast downward sloping tonal pitch ~200-60Hz. Spread other instruments away from it if you can. Also sidechaing is a way to do this.

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LotZo wrote:

Hey so I’m guessing you mean the kick drum? That’s the only thing that didn’t sound punchy. The advice to subtract everything else other than the thing you want punchy is good. Another thing I can think of is that the punchy kick sound comes from a fast downward sloping tonal pitch ~200-60Hz. Spread other instruments away from it if you can. Also sidechaing is a way to do this.

Thanks for the advice! Side-chaining is something I definitely should work on.