Splice Tips: Creating “Talking” Wobble Bass Sounds in Ableton Live

In this video, producer and educator Christopher Petti familiarizes you with common techniques for creating animated wobble bass patches like you’d commonly hear in Dubstep, Drumstep, or Electro House. You’ll learn how to create automated filter sweeps using LFOs, sync effects to project tempo for achieving wobble effects, and downsample audio to add bite and harmonic grit to patches. Sign up for Splice and download the modified Ableton Live project for Figure and Dirty Deeds’ “The Blob” below to follow along with the video and gain a better understanding of how to apply these techniques to your own projects.

Talking Bass sounds are an integral component of modern bass music because they add a unique sound that makes the listener instantly pay attention when the bass drops. When used with care, they have the ability to bring your tracks to life by injecting an instantly recognizable sense of aggression into your arrangements.

‘Talking’ Wobble Bass Key Terms:

  • Subtractive Synthesis – A method of sound synthesis in which partials of an audio signal (often one rich in harmonics) are attenuated by a filter to alter the timbre of the sound.
  • Modulation – The process of using a dynamic trigger source to systematically alter specific qualities of an external parameter.
  • Low Frequency Oscillator (LFO) – An oscillator operating at a rate well below the threshold of human hearing for use as a modulation trigger source.
  • Rate – Specifies the speed of a given parameter. Measured in milliseconds or tempo-based divisions.
  • Downsampling – Altering an audio signal’s resolution by lowering its sampling rate or sample size (bits per sample).
  • Formant – Prominent bands of frequency that determine the phonetic quality of an audio signal.