Category Archives: Technical Articles

How to use VST Pianos in Dubstep

Dubstep VST

A lot of artists are looking to create new and exciting sounds within their Dubstep mixes. Sometimes you even want to make your own Dubstep Samples to use within your mixes and to have a few pre-mixed sounds on standby. A Dubstep sample of this caliber could be used as “fillers” that will allow you to transition to complete new sets.

How to use the VST Piano?

Firstly we need to understand the dynamics of a piano. The classical edge of the piano can create many different sounds. For instance if you were to add a slight echo to a grand piano and play minor progressions you’ll obtain a sweet yet eerie ambiance.

However play funk chords or blues chords you change the entire motif of the arrangement. Thus before you even think of “What type of Piano” you’ll be using you need to understand the type of song you’ll want to make. Do you want to add in the classical edge to your mix or do you want to make it a funky drum and bass mix? These are questions about motif that you should have clear before even starting to produce.

Obviously a lot of the song will evolve during the production phase but nonetheless it is good to have at the very minimal a basic idea of what it is you want to achieve. Based on this you’ll use the correct piano sound to complement the ultimate “feeling” you wish to induce on your listener.

Once you have decided…

Now that you know what it is you want to do with your song you choose the correct VST plugin whether it is a classical or a funk, harpsichord or what have you.

In terms of recording you have two approaches. The first would be to do “live recording” after you have run the plugin through your midi interphase. The second would be “looped recording” which is where you only take a specific section of the track and add in the specific loop for that section.

The second method is more precise but will take longer where the first method would create a more “live” feel to your track. Obviously you require some musical background when implementing the “Life recording” methodology. Live recording makes “irregularities” within the note sequences which is slightly off making it sound more natural since humans aren’t usually 100 on tempo whereas a machine never misses a beat.

For beginner musicians it is recommended to use the second approach to recording since you will have more control over the time selection, note arrangement and if you make a mistake you can always tweak the selection note for note.

vst-piano

 

Get variety

Whether you want to make a dubstep sample or a full on arrangement it’s always a good idea to have a wide variety of VSTs in order to have a bigger selection of sounds that will assist you in inducing the specific emotion behind your song.

Also it is good to experiment; remember that in music there are no mistakes, just experimentation. Push your own boundaries, search for new piano VSTs and listen to good music to find the inspiration needed to flesh out your own songs. In the end it comes out to having a great library in order to produce amazing songs!

Defining your VST preferences

A lot of musicians these days are in search of more VST plugins to add into their songs, create a Dubstep sample and much more.  The problem however is that there are so many VSTs out there that it becomes difficult to decide which of these VSTs will work best for you or not.

Native Instruments Kontakt can do it all.

Native Instruments Kontakt can do it all.

That is why we have decided to help you, based on your preferences, make up your mind on choosing the best Dubstep VSTs for your music. Please note that we aren’t going to add a specific list of plugins but rather factors you need to consider in order to match the right VST to the general motif of your sound.

What is the “type of music” you wish to make?

Firstly you need to identify the type of dubstep that interests you the most. Obviously you are into dubstep, but what element of dubstep attracts you the most? Is it the bass lines, the drops or the drum beat that makes your heart race faster? By defining what it is that attracts you to the genre will most definitely help you in defining the profile of the sounds that you are going to be searching for. Also know that these “feelings “ will change as you continue through dubstep. You’ll discover other aspects of dubstep that might grab your attention and that’s okay…your VST lists should always be expanding and decreasing; that means you are doing something right.

How much space do you have available?

If you don’t have too much space for an elaborate library then simply find VST plugins that will serve multi purposes. I usually divide them into categories and then start filling them up from there. If I grow tires of a VST I would delete it but keep the URL in a folder where I got it. Obviously this is a reference to free VSTs because paid VSTS come backed up so you can install them when needed.

How Professional do you want to be?

How far do you want to get in your Dubstep career? Are you just producing for the sake of producing, for you and your ears alone or are you planning on hitting clubs, festivals and produce your own album? The level of professionalism will dictate on your preference of Free VSTs and Purchased VSTs. Regardless of your level of profession if you like a certain VST make a Dubstep Sample or a few from thus said VST. Even if you delete the VST you’ll still have those samples backed up ready to be used whenever.

Conclusion

In the end it comes down to the tools you currently have available to properly filter the unneeded VSTs from the much needed ones. An electronic musician needs to rely heavily on the VST library to find new gigs and to expand his or her career.

For those just producing for the fun of it you could always just get your hands on the free VSTs out there but to be 100% honest with you; purchased packs often provide a few “golden nuggets” in terms of sounds. The free VST might be good, at least some, but finding them can cost time and effort which you could have been using to produce and experiment with your music.

Another great NI plugin “Razor” which is great for Dubstep Wobbles. See it in action here: