Audiobus: Use your music apps together.

What is Audiobus?Audiobus is an award-winning music app for iPhone and iPad which lets you use your other music apps together. Chain effects on your favourite synth, run the output of apps or Audio Units into an app like GarageBand or Loopy, or select a different audio interface output for each app. Route MIDI between apps — drive a synth from a MIDI sequencer, or add an arpeggiator to your MIDI keyboard — or sync with your external MIDI gear. And control your entire setup from a MIDI controller.

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YOUR current workflow for creating finished tracks

edited October 12 in App Tips and Tricks

I use Koala to rip samples off video, if they are noisy Hokusai fixes that. Then goes into Cubasis 3, where I lay down a 16 bar loop with the sample, often using Koala to play unquantized. In Cubasis I use a template with two tracks (audio/midi) setup with FX. Then duplicate for more tracks. At the end bus i have a compressor and finally limiter. I have the "keep frozen midi track" option on, so I always can go back to edit if needed. Resample alot with freezing to commit to audio and for mangling, sometimes layering with the source track. Once I have enough sound and a groove going, upload to soundcloud for feedback. Then onto the next track.

Comments

  • Strap in for a long reply, lol.

    Well it all depends on what genre I'm producing. If it's Experimental, I usually start with a recording I download from Freesound, and if it's a short recording, I use PaulXStretch or TwistedWave to stretch it. Then I load it into AUM and just fly by the seat of my pants from there. I may add in a synth, or maybe not. Or I may just use that one sample and let Rymdigare do the rest. 😅 Then I live perform it into the master track.

    If it's Melodic Ambient, I load in Fugue Machine and a couple of random synths of my choosing. Then I lay out some notes and adjust some parameters for each "tape head" in Fugue Machine. Then depending on how it's going, I may load another synth or two and then drive some parameters with mLFO. Then I live perform it into the master track.

    When it's Experimental or Ambient, I use TwistedWave to normalise the piece to -3dB rather than use a limiter so the piece can breathe.


    However these days, I'm back to producing mostly vocal EDM in Nanostudio 2 and in fact am producing a 12-track album to be released on BandCamp (as well as a Halloween song to tentatively be released 28 October). Whether or not a track is vocal or melodic, I start developing the song on a simple piano track to set chorus, melody, and bass note (although not always in that order). Usually I begin with the chorus or main 8-bar loop and then move onto verses if the track is vocal (and sometimes a bridge).

    Once the piano track is laid out, if the track is vocal, I will write the lyrics. Then I develop a beat on top of the piano track, then the bassline (the midbass and sub), then the main lead melody, and sometimes the chords (depending on the genre being produced). As I develop the instrumental, things may change or be switched around, etc, until the instrumental is complete. I usually mute the piano track by this point and render out the unmixed track for vocal recording in Cubasis 3.

    Right, I record the vocals in CB3, clean with Brusfri, compress it to even out the dynamics, use a gate to reduce the noise even further if any background noise persists, and use Waves Tune RT to give it a not-so-subtle tuning effect (much like how Eiffel 65 tuned Jeffrey Jey's vocals). Then I record backing vocals if the track calls for it.

    Then I import the vocals into NS2, lay them out, mix down the entire track, and slap on MagicDeathEyeStereo, BarkFilter, NoLimits, and the Youlean metre to make sure I don't overlimit my track.


    Your music on SoundCloud sounds great by the way.

  • edited October 9

    Thanks for your reply and compliment! Your sound is very professional, so the feedback means alot!

    Very interesting to read how others go about making stuff, so I hope to hear from more people. If you guys have pieces related to the particular workflow you are describing it would be cool too. Thanks again!

  • Drag my feet until the deadline whacks me in the shins probably isn’t the kind of answer that’s any use to anyone 😅

  • edited October 9

    @Krupa said:
    Drag my feet until the deadline whacks me in the shins probably isn’t the kind of answer that’s any use to anyone 😅

    Not really, but if you could outline what happens between shin whack and mixdown it would be!

  • I change my workflow on a per track basis so it’s always hard for me to answer this question. I just do whatever I feel in the moment. I just okay for fun anyway.

  • @ehehehe said:
    Thanks for your reply and compliment! Your sound is very professional, so the feedback means alot!

    Cheers mate, and thank you for the compliment as well. :)

    Very interesting to read how others go about making stuff, so I hope to hear from more people. If you guys have pieces related to the particular workflow you are describing it would be cool too. Thanks again!

    Well regarding my EDM workflow, this Halloween track was produced using that exact method.

    https://www.dropbox.com/s/w4ajlhddjkagby1/JWM - Silver Moon (Teaser).wav?dl=0

    Of course I can only share a small snippet of it as I plan to release the full thing on BandCamp. While it's already mixed down and polished, I'm waiting for my cousin to do a little voice acting for the little "radio show skit" at the beginning of the track.

    (All he has to do is record the audio, or even a video on his iPhone (I can extract the audio from the video via Koala no sweat), but he's dragging his feet. I plan to pay him either by Paypal or buying him drinks in person, so not like he won't be compensated. Okay, enough of that tangent.)

    This song also followed the same workflow as described above, and it's basically all Hell breaking loose from pure fury towards this friend of mine. 🤣 This song by the way will not be released to BandCamp as it's more of a vent song rather than anything I'd wish anyone to pay money for.

  • @ehehehe said:

    @Krupa said:
    Drag my feet until the deadline whacks me in the shins probably isn’t the kind of answer that’s any use to anyone 😅

    Not really, but if you could outline what happens between shin whack and mixdown it would be!

    In the latest case, I plonked the video on the timeline, and just used an ebow with a guitar and a mandolin to respond in real time in an attempt to channel Mike’s improv proliferation. I then reversed and added (probably too much) reverb and some extra saturation on top of the amp sim. I then exported it before the fear took me, or I started obsessively editing until next year…

  • Pick up an instrument, play around, shape it, record on something, enhance it, add more, finished.

  • @jwmmakerofmusic said:
    Strap in for a long reply, lol.

    Well it all depends on what genre I'm producing. If it's Experimental, I usually start with a recording I download from Freesound, and if it's a short recording, I use PaulXStretch or TwistedWave to stretch it. Then I load it into AUM and just fly by the seat of my pants from there. I may add in a synth, or maybe not. Or I may just use that one sample and let Rymdigare do the rest. 😅 Then I live perform it into the master track.

    If it's Melodic Ambient, I load in Fugue Machine and a couple of random synths of my choosing. Then I lay out some notes and adjust some parameters for each "tape head" in Fugue Machine. Then depending on how it's going, I may load another synth or two and then drive some parameters with mLFO. Then I live perform it into the master track.

    When it's Experimental or Ambient, I use TwistedWave to normalise the piece to -3dB rather than use a limiter so the piece can breathe.


    However these days, I'm back to producing mostly vocal EDM in Nanostudio 2 and in fact am producing a 12-track album to be released on BandCamp (as well as a Halloween song to tentatively be released 28 October). Whether or not a track is vocal or melodic, I start developing the song on a simple piano track to set chorus, melody, and bass note (although not always in that order). Usually I begin with the chorus or main 8-bar loop and then move onto verses if the track is vocal (and sometimes a bridge).

    Once the piano track is laid out, if the track is vocal, I will write the lyrics. Then I develop a beat on top of the piano track, then the bassline (the midbass and sub), then the main lead melody, and sometimes the chords (depending on the genre being produced). As I develop the instrumental, things may change or be switched around, etc, until the instrumental is complete. I usually mute the piano track by this point and render out the unmixed track for vocal recording in Cubasis 3.

    Right, I record the vocals in CB3, clean with Brusfri, compress it to even out the dynamics, use a gate to reduce the noise even further if any background noise persists, and use Waves Tune RT to give it a not-so-subtle tuning effect (much like how Eiffel 65 tuned Jeffrey Jey's vocals). Then I record backing vocals if the track calls for it.

    Then I import the vocals into NS2, lay them out, mix down the entire track, and slap on MagicDeathEyeStereo, BarkFilter, NoLimits, and the Youlean metre to make sure I don't overlimit my track.


    Your music on SoundCloud sounds great by the way.

    How long approximately does it take you to create a song from start to mixing/ mastering?

    I am asking because it takes me a eternity to create one song (100 hours+) and I don't even put vocals.

  • I usually have an idea for a concept of a song before I actually start working on it. Either some self-imposed gear restriction, or some random idea I get from TV or a book. I do a lot of beat driven music, so I tend to start with drums to give me something to play over. From there it's just grabbing whatever app or gear strikes my fancy and I start recording loops to form the core of the song. Might be a baseline first, might be a guitar part, or maybe some weird samples I recorded.

    Rinse and repeat, keep the loops that work and delete the ones that don't. Eventually I'll have a core of song happening, all the main elements and some supporting ones I know go well together. From here I'll either put those loops into the Octatrack so I can perform and create the song structure live, or they get recorded into Ableton (or any other DAW like Cubasis) for arranging.

    I'll lay out the song arrangement in the DAW, and then I go back into overdub mode recording longer audio clips into the song. Things like transitions from one song section to another, or maybe longer solos, etc. Just trying to make it evolve and not sound loopy at all. I usually have grand plans for all kinds of complicated fills and transitions for may songs. But I always hit a point long before that where I realize enough is enough and the song feels done.

    I don't do a separate mix and master phase for my songs anymore, I just do it as I go. But I'm also a big fan of taking a few days away from a song once I think I'm almost done. Not being in a rush and doing that step a couple times really helps you spot any issues with the way things sound. "Mastering" for me is usually just putting one of my mastering limiters on the master channel to make sure I'm using all the headroom. That's it most of the time.

  • edited October 10

    @ecou said:
    How long approximately does it take you to create a song from start to mixing/ mastering?

    I am asking because it takes me a eternity to create one song (100 hours+) and I don't even put vocals.

    It really depends on what I'm doing in a given week and what genre I'm producing.


    Ambient/Experimental - 1-2 days. Basically it's gather the sounds, load a couple synths, trigger the notes with Fugue Machine, and then execute a live performance recording in AUM.


    Instrumental EDM - 3-6 days. Without the struggle of writing lyrics, it's relatively easy to piece something together. Especially since I use NS2 which has Obsidian, but I also use Zeeon (especially if I'm making Trance as it produces a meatier lead), Beathawk, and Module.


    Vocal EDM - 5-10 days. Writing a killer chorus comes very easy to me, but writing verses tends to be a drag that takes 1-2 days in of itself. After I produce the instrumental (I don't bother mixing it down yet) and load it into Cubasis 3, recording the vocals takes about a couple of hours as I'm not bothering with singing. Granted I do sing pretty decent, but sometimes it takes multiple takes and multiple hours to get something decent before applying the autotune to get the desired "electronic voice" effect I want. When I "speak sing", I can record the quality of my singing voice and focus on precise pronunciations while letting Waves Tune RT take care of the pitch.

    In the above "Screw Yourself" song, I didn't sing one lyric at all prior to autotuning. ;) I "speak sang" it.

    Anyhoo, after I have all the elements of the track in place including vocals, then I do a proper mixdown the next morning when my ears are fresh so the mix doesn't turn out shite.


    EDIT: The reason I'm pretty quick at this is from 20+ years of creating EDM as well as producing lots of Ambient and Experimental in my college days.

  • @jwmmakerofmusic said:

    @ecou said:
    How long approximately does it take you to create a song from start to mixing/ mastering?

    I am asking because it takes me a eternity to create one song (100 hours+) and I don't even put vocals.

    It really depends on what I'm doing in a given week and what genre I'm producing.


    Ambient/Experimental - 1-2 days. Basically it's gather the sounds, load a couple synths, trigger the notes with Fugue Machine, and then execute a live performance recording in AUM.


    Instrumental EDM - 3-6 days. Without the struggle of writing lyrics, it's relatively easy to piece something together. Especially since I use NS2 which has Obsidian, but I also use Zeeon (especially if I'm making Trance as it produces a meatier lead), Beathawk, and Module.


    Vocal EDM - 5-10 days. Writing a killer chorus comes very easy to me, but writing verses tends to be a drag that takes 1-2 days in of itself. After I produce the instrumental (I don't bother mixing it down yet) and load it into Cubasis 3, recording the vocals takes about a couple of hours as I'm not bothering with singing. Granted I do sing pretty decent, but sometimes it takes multiple takes and multiple hours to get something decent before applying the autotune to get the desired "electronic voice" effect I want. When I "speak sing", I can record the quality of my singing voice and focus on precise pronunciations while letting Waves Tune RT take care of the pitch.

    In the above "Screw Yourself" song, I didn't sing one lyric at all prior to autotuning. ;) I "speak sang" it.

    Anyhoo, after I have all the elements of the track in place including vocals, then I do a proper mixdown the next morning when my ears are fresh so the mix doesn't turn out shite.


    EDIT: The reason I'm pretty quick at this is from 20+ years of creating EDM as well as producing lots of Ambient and Experimental in my college days.

    Thanks for answering. Yeah I am still very new at electronic music.

  • 1) sketching & arrangement: iPad / Drambo – but i don't build any sound generating stuff myself, using either AUv3 synths with lots of ready presets, or hardware.
    2) performing – hardware.
    3) multitrack recording – hardware (Zoom LiveTrak series)
    4) mixing & mastering – Harrison Mixbus 32C.

  • @jwmmakerofmusic said:

    @ehehehe said:
    Thanks for your reply and compliment! Your sound is very professional, so the feedback means alot!

    Cheers mate, and thank you for the compliment as well. :)

    Very interesting to read how others go about making stuff, so I hope to hear from more people. If you guys have pieces related to the particular workflow you are describing it would be cool too. Thanks again!

    Well regarding my EDM workflow, this Halloween track was produced using that exact method.

    https://www.dropbox.com/s/w4ajlhddjkagby1/JWM - Silver Moon (Teaser).wav?dl=0

    Of course I can only share a small snippet of it as I plan to release the full thing on BandCamp. While it's already mixed down and polished, I'm waiting for my cousin to do a little voice acting for the little "radio show skit" at the beginning of the track.

    (All he has to do is record the audio, or even a video on his iPhone (I can extract the audio from the video via Koala no sweat), but he's dragging his feet. I plan to pay him either by Paypal or buying him drinks in person, so not like he won't be compensated. Okay, enough of that tangent.)

    This song also followed the same workflow as described above, and it's basically all Hell breaking loose from pure fury towards this friend of mine. 🤣 This song by the way will not be released to BandCamp as it's more of a vent song rather than anything I'd wish anyone to pay money for.

    you are great producer brother ✊🏼

  • 1) Load up loopy (10 seconds)
    2) record stuff without thinking. Lay down some guitar, then another, then bass, some Digitakt rythm… (20-30 minutes) if I also improvise vocals that’s another 10 minutes.
    3) 2 weeks going over the mix, 90% of the mixing time spent on the Audiobus forum which we all know counts as mixing. 9% time spent restarting daw.
    4) 3 days making a shitty video so I can upload something to YouTube as I’ve been too lazy to get a DistroKid thing going.

  • @SLPGroundSoundMusic Thank you so much mate. :) That means a lot.

  • I have tons of unfinished jams and half-baked ideas sitting around, because I've always found finishing tracks on the iPad to be a pain. But lately I've settled into kind of a system where I start on the iPad messing around with various synths/plugins in AUM, then if I like them I'll load Drambo as a MIDI track in AUM and start sequencing a rough song. I'm mostly using AUM for piano roll and automation sequencing, but not fussing too much with things like panning and volume fades which I'll do in a DAW. When happy with the sketch, I'll export the stems and load into Reaper for "mastering". I'm toying with the idea of then bringing those stems back into AUM for final mixdown, mostly because I don't have any AU FX plugins for the computer and they are just far cheaper for the iPad. I've also tried just skipping the DAW completely, loading the stems into a new AUM instance and using Drambo automation for panning and fades, but I really like being able to see the tracks together in a DAW layout.

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