How to Produce a Track

Method 1

First degrade, then EQ.

  • Score the patterns on a DAW. FL Studio is a good one.
  • Export each loop of the score to two lossless, gapless files (WAV, FLAC), one for Left one for Right channel.
  • Join all the resulting audio files in a long track, leaving several measures of silence at the beginning, to allow time to place the recording equipment
  • Degrade the resulting long track with a smartphone and a Bluetooth speaker inside a fabric padded shoebox or archive box:
    • place the speaker on one side
    • place the phone in front of the speaker
    • close the box lid, bury under fabric coats for soundproofing (better inside a closet)
    •  play the track at half volume to avoid recording distortion
    • record through a recording app on the smartphone set to hi-bitrate WAV file (at least 44.100 Hz 16 bit). ASR Recorder is a good one.
    • Degrade the bass subs with a subwoofer and the bass highs with the speaker inside the box.
    • Degrade each drum piece separately, so you can sequence the drum part with the degraded sounds.
    • Degrade the kick subs with a subwoofer and the kick highs with the speaker inside the box.
  • Download the audio file from the smartphone
  • Denoise the audio file
  • Split the audio file in Left channel and Right channel part and save to two separate files
  • Put the Left and Right audio file on two separate channels, sync them, pan Left all the way left and Right all the way right, save to a stereo audio file.
  • Splice the stereo audio file to extract all the individual loops and save each loop to FLAC, WAV or other lossless, gapless format.
  • Roll-off above 380 Hz the bass track degraded on the subwoofer. Roll-off below 380 Hz the bass track degraded on the tweeter and invert polarity. Mix together the two tracks. You will have to roll off 250 Hz on the final bass loop, in order to avoid distortion when the track is amplified.
  • Roll-off above 250 Hz the kick degraded on the subwoofer. Roll-off below 250 Hz the kick degraded on the tweeter and invert polarity. Mix together the two samples.
  • Sequence the drum parts with the degraded drum pieces.
  • Sequence the degraded stereo loops.
  • If the microphone inverts (see this section to check microphone inversion), invert polarity on all loops, leaving hats and percussions straight
  • If the microphone does not invert, invert polarity on hats and percussions, leaving all loops straight
  • Roll-off completely below 250Hz on all loops except kick and bass
  • Turn down halfway 5000, 3000 and 1500 Hz on all loops except vocals and hats
  • Turn down halfway 1500 Hz on hats
  • Turn down halfway 650 Hz on all loops except drums
  • Feed each loop to a separate reverb fader except hats
    • Turn all the way down dry signal on reverb
    • Roll-off below 250Hz on reverb
    • Compress heavily the reverb turning down knee to 0
    • Turn down halfway 5000 and 1500 Hz on reverb
    • Turn all the way down 500 Hz on reverb
    • Invert polarity on reverb
  • Reverb hats and percussions separately
    • Turn all the way down dry signal on reverb
    • Roll-off below 250Hz on reverb
    • Compress heavily the reverb turning down knee to 0
    • Turn down halfway 5000 and 1500 Hz on reverb
    • Turn all the way down the way 500 Hz on reverb
    • Unlike the rest of the tracks, leave the reverb straight
  • Export to mp3

Method 2

First EQ then degrade.

  • Score the patterns on a DAW. FL Studio is a good one.
  • Roll-off completely below 250Hz on all tracks, except kick and bass
  • Turn down halfway 5000, 3000 and 1500 Hz on all tracks except vocals and hats
  • Turn down halfway 1500 Hz on hats
  • Turn down halfway 650 Hz on all loops except drums
  • Export each loop of the score to two lossless, gapless files (WAV, FLAC), one for Left one for Right channel
  • Join all the resulting audio files in a long track, leaving several measures of silence at the beginning, to allow time to place the recording equipment
  • Record the resulting long track with a smartphone and a Bluetooth speaker inside a fabric padded shoebox or archive box:
    • place the speaker on one side
    • place the phone in front of the speaker
    • close the box lid, bury under fabric coats for soundproofing (better inside a closet)
    •  play the track at half volume to avoid recording distortion
    • record through a recording app on the smartphone set to hi-bitrate WAV file (at least 44.100 Hz 16 bit). ASR Recorder is a good one.
  • Degrade the bass subs with a subwoofer and the bass highs with the speaker inside the box.
  • Degrade each drum piece separately, so you can sequence the drum part with the degraded sounds.
  • Degrade the kick subs with a subwoofer and the kick highs with the speaker inside the box.
  • Download the audio file from the smartphone
  • Denoise the audio file
  • Split the audio file in Left channel and Right channel part and save to two separate files
  • Put the Left and Right audio file on two separate channels, sync them, pan Left all the way left and Right all the way right, save to a stereo audio file.
  • Splice the stereo audio file to extract all the individual loops and save each loop to FLAC, WAV or other lossless, gapless format.
  • Roll-off above 380 Hz the bass track degraded on the subwoofer. Roll-off below 380 Hz the bass track degraded on the tweeter and invert polarity. Mix together the two tracks. You will have to roll off 250 Hz on the final bass loop, in order to avoid distortion when the track is amplified.
  • Roll-off above 250 Hz the kick degraded on the subwoofer. Roll-off below 250 Hz the kick degraded on the tweeter. Mix together the two samples.
  • Sequence the drum parts with the degraded drum pieces.
  • Sequence the degraded stereo loops.
  • If the microphone inverts (see this section to check microphone inversion), invert polarity on all loops, leaving hats and percussions straight.
  • If the microphone does not invert, invert polarity on hats and percussions, leaving all loops straight.
  • Feed each loop to a separate reverb fader except hats
    • Turn all the way down dry signal on reverb
    • Roll-off below 250Hz on reverb
    • Compress heavily the reverb turning down knee to 0
    • Turn down halfway 5000 and 1500 Hz on reverb
    • Turn all the way down 500 Hz on reverb
    • Invert polarity on reverb
  • Reverb hats and percussions separately
    • Turn all the way down dry signal on reverb
    • Roll-off below 250Hz on reverb
    • Compress heavily the reverb turning down knee to 0
    • Turn down halfway 5000 and 1500 Hz on reverb
    • Turn all the way down the way 500 Hz on reverb
    • Unlike the rest of the tracks, leave the reverb straight
  • Export to mp3

These procedures work with a bluetooth speaker and a smartphone, but you can also degrade through a microphone and speakers connected to a laptop or desktop computer, placing one speaker inside a fabric padded shoebox or archive box and recording directly into the DAW.

You can make your track more “hi-fi” through a trick. You can master/degrade the tracks following the procedure described above, only slowing down at half-speed the long track containing the pure electronic loops. Once you have the file downloaded on the computer from the phone, you can speed it up at double speed. This can be done in a number of ways inside FL Studio (with the Edison sound editor, with the Time Stretching feature in the channel rack) and will have the effect of making the sound more crisp and the ambience less “dead”, as if it was recorded at a higher resolution in more lively ambience. Keep in mind, though, this will alter the quality of synesthetic sensations (see “Synesthesia” section). The smell, for one, will most likely become “unpleasant”. Tracks at normal speed may sound a bit “dead” and “dark”, but will actually convey more “natural” sensations. All the polarity inversions required in this procedure also have a synesthetic purpose (see section).