Ed:it’s es­sen­tial guide to cre­ative de­lay tech­niques

Computer Music - - Contents -

I con­sis­tently reach for de­lay and echo ef­fects, my favourite be­ing ana­logue-style re­peats. Why that par­tic­u­lar flavour, you ask? For its ver­sa­til­ity, of course – from de­grad­ing feed­back to smooth, sul­try cho­rus­ing and flang­ing, de­lay ef­fects pro­vide an enor­mous pal­ette of sonic colours that will suit pretty much any track el­e­ment.

There are count­less de­lay ef­fects to be found in soft­ware form. My go-to plugin is Ohm Force’s Oh­mBoyz – I know it’s been about for a while, but I still use it in pretty much ev­ery project – al­though the tech­niques I’ll be cov­er­ing trans­fer to any equiv­a­lent de­lay ef­fect, so don’t worry if you’re not an Oh­mBoyz user.

Join me, then, as I ex­plore a range of cre­ative echo tech­niques. First, I’ll smother a dubby vo­cal chop and old-school stab in ex­tended feed­back buildups. Af­ter that, I’ll cre­ate rhyth­mic per­cus­sion ef­fects by fil­ter­ing de­lay re­peats. Then I’ll use au­to­ma­tion to ‘ride’ pa­ram­e­ters such as feed­back, fil­ter res­o­nance and de­lay time; and em­ploy the on­board LFO for hands-free mod­u­la­tion du­ties.

When mess­ing with echo, map your plugin pa­ram­e­ters to a MIDI con­troller’s knobs – it’s the best way to jug­gle set­tings as you would with a phys­i­cal de­lay unit. If you don’t have knobs to hand, sim­ply twist pa­ram­e­ters with the mouse and record the au­to­ma­tion in real time.

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