The Source and stevn.aint.leavn present his take on drum bus processing

Beste Modus and Certain Circles co-founder stevn.aint.leavn calls amongst his closest homies Ed Herbst, and Diego Krause. No wonder his tracks are amongst the smoothest deep minimal house on the circuit.

It is worth pointing out at this is not down to who his friends are its down to the hours he has spent in the studio honing his skills. It is these skills that The Source have employed in their recent tutorial.

Give us a breakdown of your video for The Source?

In my tutorial, I was talking about how I process my drum bus, to make it sit better in the overall mix of the track. Of course, many roads lead to Rome and I also use different ways to achieve that sound, but I wanted to mainly focus on a pretty simple and effective way to work and to only use tools that are accessible to everyone.

Where did you learn these invaluable mixing skills?

I guess countless years of trial and error helped a bit in figuring things out and trying to gain knowledge from anywhere I can (books, tutorials, people I collab with,..). I know it’s not easy with the overwhelming mass of tutorials and tips out there, but if you dig deeper and know what you are looking for – or more specific – what kind of weaknesses you want to tackle in your production, then I’m pretty sure you will find inspiring answers to your questions.

The majority of the plugins you use in the tutorial are native to Ableton. Is this purely for the tutorial or do you feel there is no need for expensive external effects for good results?

I believe in the end expensive tools don’t make a great track or mix, but the person who knows how to use these tools does. As I said in the first question already, for this tutorial I’m using only native Ableton plugins and one freeware multiband compressor, so anyone will be able to try it out, without having to buy that one golden plugin. Nonetheless, for myself I’m using the best of both worlds I guess, so there are definitely some plugins I’ve bought and that by now are crucial to my production. In the end, it really depends on your workflow and taste, which tools you’re gonna choose or which are really helpful for you.

What were the biggest mistakes that you were making when processing drums prior to learning these techniques?

I think I didn’t group my drum bus at all, before I knew how to do it properly. So, I just basically had separate channels for each Kick, Snare, Hi-Hat and so on. I wouldn’t consider this a major mistake, but I learned that you can get a tighter, more unified sound that will cut through mix nicely when grouping things together in one bus and processing it. Although I’m keeping the Kick still on its own bus and have the rest of the drums together on one bus.

Can we expect to see the sample track from your tutorial coming out soon?

Hopefully yes haha, it’s not signed yet…but let’s see!


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