How to make a Foamo-style fidget house bassline
28th Apr 2010 | 11:14
Step 1: Creating a typical Foamo-style bassline is possible in most virtual analogue synths. We’re going to use Lennar Digital’s Sylenth1, the demo of which can be downloaded from Lennar Digital’s website. Start by selecting one of the Init patches from the default bank. This gives us the basic grounding to build up from.
Step 2: We want a chunkier sound than the default saw wave loaded here, so click Oscillator A1’s Wave display until you get a square shape, as shown. This gives us a far beefier low-end, more suitable for making heavy fidget house bass sounds. Also, turn the number of Voices up to 2.
Step 3: Next, turn the Detune knob up to 1.00. This retunes the oscillators slightly, giving us a more organic, analogue sound. However, this also has the side effect of panning the oscillators. We don’t need a wide sound, so turn the Stereo knob all the way down to 0.
Step 4: We can add a bit of movement to this basic patch by activating the filter. Set the Filter Type to low-pass and turn Keytrack up to 5.00. This makes the synth follow the pitch of the note being played. Turn the Drive up to 3.90 for some extra grunt, and route LFO 1 to Cutoff A.
Step 5: Set LFO 1’s Rate to 1/16 and Gain to max. Turn the modulation level (the knob to the left of the Cutoff A display) up to 2.00. This gives us some subtle movement, without wobbling too much. Activate Mono Legato mode (to the right of the keyboard) and turn Portamento up to 5.00.
Step 6: Set Amp Env A’s release time (R) to 3.00. Now, play notes in different octaves in quick succession to get that typical, bendy fidget house sound. To finish off, insert a compressor and route the kick drum to the sidechain input. This will attenuate the synth whenever the kick plays, creating a pumping effect.