After making serious waves out of the gate with their anthemic, ’80s-inspired remixes and original productions, Midnight Kids‘ journey continues on with the release of their highly anticipated The Lost Youth EP.
After unveiling singles including “Monsters,” “Last Time,” and “Run It” featuring Annika Wells off their debut EP, their 8-track body of work can now be enjoyed in its entirety engulfing listeners in the sounds of dreamy 80’s synthwave pop-tined games that have become synonymous with their name.
Considering they have such a unique and refreshing sound, Midnight Kids took the time to share a handful of production tips to share with all the up-and-coming producers out there or anyone looking to spice things up during their studio sessions.
Check out Midnight Kids’ complete list of tips and debut The Lost Youth EP below.
1. Sidechain everything to your drums
This is more important for elements in the low end in order to not clash with your kick, but a really easy way to get your drums to pop more is by sidechaining all of the elements to your drums. It’s really easy to set up a template that allows you to easily route things to a sidechain compressor that’s being triggered by a ghost kick, your mixes will feel a lot more balanced with everything being ducked behind your drums!
2. Remove low end from most elements
There are so many parts of a track that don’t need low end, such as cymbals, most percussion, and middle end instruments. There can be a lot of low end in these elements that isn’t contributing anything other than muddy-ing up your mix, so it’s best to just remove it in order to avoid causing unneccesary problems in the mix. It’s also useful to remove low end from the SIDE signal in low end elements, as this can also give the illusion of a muddy mix. We find this is most apparent in pianos, and taking the low end out of the side signal makes it feel quite a bit cleaner.
3. Don’t be afraid to use presets
Sometimes you’ll be trying out a new plugin and you’ll stumble upon a preset that gives you an absolute burst of inspiration. Use it! In a world where creativity is so finnicky and it comes and goes, you need to capitalize on anything and everything that gives you ideas. As long as you’re not using entire royalty free loops in order to create your song, using presets in cool and creative ways can help make your tracks that much more interesting.
4. Most of what makes a track sound full is in elements people aren’t actively listening to
The best way to make a track sound full is by providing a base atmosphere for all of the major elements to sit on top of. Things like rain, night ambience, and ambient pads are things that fill out the “background noise” of songs. Even if the listener isn’t consciously listening out for these elements, it makes a huge difference in the quality of a song and is one of the ways you can take a song to the next level of professionalism.
5. Make something wildly outside of what you normally create
The best way to create something new and encourage creativity is by experimenting with stuff you have never created before. If you write house, try making a drum n bass song. Creating something you’re not used to means you’re starting with a completely blank canvas, you don’t have a formula or workflow for that style yet. This means there is a much greater chance of you creating something unique without even realizing it. Don’t be afraid to experiment no matter how daunting it may seem!
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