Creating a synth line, especially the classic Adamski Killer synth is very easy to accomplish. But why should we create this synth?
The main reasons are: The synth line itself is a classic Dance tune, and has become a classic because it is easily recognisable, listenable, rememberable and just falls into the beat like a marriage.
The Adamski Killer Synth is also a template for modern day tunes. If you shift the notes between the kick then you get a synth line similar to the chart topping BodyRox- Yeah! Yeah!
Synth lines are pretty standard things, with dance and techno varieties having to become so funky, dancable, rememberable and listenable to get any sort of air play and to stick out from the crowd.
So what do we need to do in our Adamski Killer synth tutorial?
- First we need to get our friendly tracker up and going (see here to see how to do this), load up SuperWave P8, and load up a drum machine (click here to see how we can do that).
Adamski Killer synth tutorial #2
Before we start synth building we must first start off our beat. Killer has a fairly standard Kick routine, and I have a hunch that if we make the beat first we can easily create the synth line around that.
So if you haven’t already, create a standard kick line in channel 01. To do this highlight Drumatic (brutal kit already selected in the plug-in window, and selected to run in channel 01). Then:
- Press F2 on your keypad,
- press space (to record),
- press Q, and insert the beat in the following areas 00, 04, 08, 12, 16, 20, 24, 28 (the yellow lines)
- If you make a mistake highlight the area using the arrow keys and then press delete.
- If you press play, we have a beat. However the beat stops at 28, so press D on line 31 like so:
Press space to stop recording.
Adamski Killer synth tutorial #3
For the moment the beat is ok. Now to move onto the synth. If we go to our SuperWave P8, set for channel 00 and use the J M Jarre Strings. By using various techniques I found out the notes to use for the synth, and placed them in an order like so:
If you press F3 to lower the octave, the notes respond to various keys on your computer, here are the ones for this synth (left = notes, right = computer keys):
- A# = J
- F# = G
- F = V
- D# = D
Remember to press space bar to insert notes/ record, and to press space bar to stop recording notes.
However, the notes just merge into one another, so to stop this, we insert a bar, which drops the sound by 75%. Caps Lockapplies the bar, so we insert that at various places:
Adamski Killer synth tutorial #4
We are slowly getting there, but we now need to adjust the synth itself to get a better sound. If we really listen carefully to chart synths we can usually hear 2 synths playing simultaneously and that is again similar to the “old” Adamski Killer synth line.
So if we quickly have a peek at J M Jarre Strings, we see , the OSC1 and OSC2, the oscillators, these will give us the 2 synth sounds that we are looking for. We shall therefore call OSC 1 our bassy synth and OSC 2 our synthy synth.
By adjusting the various settings of the OSCs we can create the sound we need. So for a start, OSC2 is too low, so if we click on OCTAVE that will then bring us upto +1, much better.
In my opinion the synth sound to full on at the moment so we need to bring that down, and to do that we adjust the filters. So we bring down the cut-off on both filters to one, and increase the RESO to 8 on both.
To make the filters work a bit better, we adjust the Filter Envelope, these take a bit of explaining, so for the time being just copy what I have done, so that it looks like this:
Adamski Killer synth tutorial #5
I don’t know about you but things just feel a bit wet, and not really “in your face” especially with the kick. So what we need to do is apply some effects. These are VSTs and can be picked up from here
So first we need a little bit of Overdrive applied to channel 01.
Now we need to add a Vocoder, unusual to add to a beat, but it sounds much better with it, here are the settings:
We also need to add some ambience to the sounds, so if we go to FX on the fron of the tracker, and then apply 103 MpReverb2 to track 01, and track 02.
Adamski Killer synth tutorial #6
The synth just needs a bit of extra flavour. So for this I am going to write out the synth line again, however, applying it one octave lower (press F2) to get a more rounded effect. This will go into channel 02.
Adamski Killer synth tutorial #7
If you want the sound now to become more dancy, increase the Cut-Off in Filter 1 to 5…now you have a synth and a base line in one.
What should it sound like? The synth should sound like this: Adamski MP3 Low Filter, and when the Cut-Off is raised, should sound like this: Adamski MP3 Increase Filter.
Pheww. What a run through! This is as hard as it gets. I have missed out many steps just due to space. I recommend you check out here to see how really easy it is to make the Adamski Killer Synth, and your own techno songs .
Do you want to make some hard synth sounds. Click here for the free guide.