Hardstyle mixes influences from hard trance, hard house, and hardcore. One of the more aggressive forms of dance music often employing a hard, distorted (“barking”) kick drum mixed amongst melodic leads and binary motifs. It is also one of the more complex genres of dance music for artists to produce, requiring knowledge of a number of techniques including unusually excessive EQ, judicious frequency specific distortion, detuning, sound design and synthesis layering. To ensure that you learn the complex techniques this tutorial runs close to 12 hours of video, that has been divided up for you into three areas.
Kick – As you know the Hardstyle kick is perhaps the most elusive timbre of the genre and a major sticking point for many producers. For you to learn how to design and produce a Hardstyle kick you will spend close to 4 hours in this section. You begin with learning how to design and modifying a simple 909 kick and then you will follow the initial creative decisions and techniques for the production of a typical Hardstyle “barking” kick. You will see demonstrated various techniques and plug-ins, used by many Hardstyle artists before reviewing the audio editing and various techniques involved to further modify the previously created barking kick.
In this second module, you will learn about composition, sound design, and arranging.You will learn about the various techniques in musical composition for developing the lead, the use of counterpoint to create dissonance and the ancillary/binary melodies and motifs. We also discuss into the sound design principles and practices for leads, screeches, reverse bass, sound layering, and EQ to ensure that you have a full understanding of the different techniques required for this gene.
Arranging and Further Sound Design – For the final module, we examine further synthesis layering, lead effects busses and chains, a typical processing chain for Hardstyle vocals and then we work towards building a skeleton Hardstyle arrangement examining the build techniques, reverse bass, drop and general arrangement principles before finally returning again to sound design. Here we employ a Virus Ti and show how you can use it to create leads and screeches.