Think of any of your favourite techno tracks.
What is the key to making them work so well?
If you listen carefully, you will realize that the key elements are the kick and the bass.
So a kick drum in a 4×4 pattern and a bass line. We keep it for 10 minutes and add some random items on top for a change. Will it be enough?
Well, if you’re reading this, you probably already know that it isn’t.
Then, what do you need to make your kick and bass sound perfect?
THE SECRETS TO A PERFECT KICK AND BASS:
Well, there are no secret ingredients to get it. But there are some tips that, if you follow them, will make you have a solid kick and bass for your track.
How do we know?
Because these are tips coming from a techno producer with more than 11 years of experience and considered one of the best mixing engineers in this genre, Hannes Bieger.
1 – CHOOSE YOUR INSTRUMENTS RIGHT
Hannes tells us that the mix already begins when you choose your sounds.
For example, when choosing a bass, you should not choose it just because it sounds good on its own.
You should choose it in relation to the kick and other bass elements that you already have on your track.
This will save you unnecessary modifications and processing later on.
2 – TUNE EVERYTHING
Both melodic instruments and drums must be perfectly in tune.
This is one of Hannes’s secrets to getting such a clean and perfect sound, and it’s why he prefers to work with easy-to-tune software drums.
3 – WATCH YOUR LOW END
Do I leave the bass in mono or stereo? Do I cut the low frequencies or leave them?
A lot of opinion has been given on these and you probably wonder what is correct and what is not.
Hannes makes it clear to us: it is not advisable to have too wide a bass because our ears do not perceive it as accurate.
So, go mono as much as you can below 100Hz.
And cut the low frequencies below the fundamental frequency of the track. Those frequencies are not harmonically useful for mixing.
4 – MAKE IT GROOVY AND INTERESTING
Once the kick and bass sound clean and powerful, we need it to have that hypnotic quality that makes you want to hear it over and over again.
Hannes’ trick to this is the subtle use of delay.
Depending on the track, it will be used in one element or another, or in several. Including the kick, although it may seem crazy to you.
The subtlety of the effects you apply, along with careful automation throughout the track to add variety, will be the key to making your track interesting.
Have you found this article useful?
Would you like to see how Hannes Bieger puts these 4 tips into practice?
This is just a small part of everything Hannes explains in his new Masterclass.
For more than 4 hours, this artist will teach you all his production and mixing techniques, and will analyze the original projects of 3 of his most famous tracks.
Ready to boost your music career with Hannes Bieger?
Watch the Masterclass trailer: