EDM structure

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estellio
KVRer
22 posts since 12 Aug, 2018

Post Sun Aug 12, 2018 3:22 am

Basically, what's the most effective way to structure EDM? I've read heaps of articles and watched just as many tutorials on it, but nothing seems quite detailed enough. I've also studied songs I like, but get caught up with trying to identify all the different instrument components and effects that I forget to focus on the general structure. How do others structure their EDM? Am I just overthinking this and it's actually pretty simple? Would appreciate all responses, thanks.

Etienne1973
KVRist
291 posts since 8 Feb, 2013 from Switzerland

Re: EDM structure

Post Sun Aug 12, 2018 4:00 am

If you don't want to create experimental music then ...

1. Import an existing track which you like to imitate concerning structure in a new project of your DAW

2. Find out the exact tempo and set your project accordingly

3. Focus only on structure and arc of suspense

4. Set markers throughout the whole track and name them

5. Done. Delete the track but not the markers

6. Start making your own track

estellio
KVRer
22 posts since 12 Aug, 2018

Re: EDM structure

Post Sun Aug 12, 2018 1:09 pm

Ah, cool! Thanks for that - seems like a much more efficient way of doing things until I have a better idea of how to structure things.

enroe
KVRian
794 posts since 19 Mar, 2008 from germany

Re: EDM structure

Post Sun Aug 12, 2018 6:47 pm

:?: Isn't it always the same:

-- verse 1
-- pre-chorus 1
-- chorus 1

-- verse 2
-- pre-chorus 2
-- chorus 2

-- break
-- chorus 3
-- ending
free mp3s + info: andy-enroe.de songs + weird stuff: enroe.de

sleepcircle
KVRist
264 posts since 28 Nov, 2016

Re: EDM structure

Post Sun Aug 12, 2018 6:59 pm

music music music MUSIC MUSIC MUSIC MUSIC MUSIC MUSMUSMUSMUSMUSMUSMUSIC
DROP
hook: bow bippa-BOW DOW DOWWWWUB wubbawubbawubbawubba (and so on)
mus mus mus mus mus music music mus sic sic music sic music sic
mini-drop
hook: bow bippa-BOW DOW (etc. etc. etc.)
chill part.
repeat, slightly less chill.
BIG LEAD UP REV THE MOTOR BRRRRM BRRMM
biggest drop
un-tss un-tss un-tss un-tss wub wub chikkawikka chikkwikka scriggy-scriggy-scriggy wop
un-tss un-tss un-tss un-tss
blub-wub blub-wub
music music
mus
mus
the end




edit: okay but seriously.
think of it as a couple different goals:
1) keeping a balance between the familiar parts of the song that already exist, and new parts that expand on it.
2) keeping the intensity changing, emotional intensity, volume intensity, what-have-you. you are taking the listener on a JOURNEY. if you don't have a sense of change, of movement—if there's no movement, the journey won't go anywhere.
3) probably some others, but it's late and i'm tired.

low_low
KVRist
362 posts since 20 Jul, 2018

Re: EDM structure

Post Sun Aug 12, 2018 8:25 pm

Structure it such that ...

- People will dance to it
- Lights with flash to it
- DJ's will play it, and can mix it
- Club owners can stand to hear it
- Media will talk about it
- People will buy it
- Club sound systems can recreate it
- It isn't so repetitive that people get sick of hearing it
- It isn't so long that DJ's can fit it into their set list
- Your brand's value increases because of it

Optionally ...

- It's probably also good to have some themes that people can easily attach images to for display on screens, or to include your own images so that they can be displayed on screens
- It's probably also good to include phrases that can be yelled by the crowd either at each other or back at the DJ, such things as a millennial whoop or a phrase like "F^%k the police!", something people sing back
- It's probably also good to make it easy to create merch w/ it
- It's probably also good to make it fit in with other content creation, such as being able to produce tutorials showing how you created it, etc ..
- It might be a good idea to make it possible to make a radio friendly version of it (with duration and words that are appropriate, etc)
- It might be a good idea to make it controversial, depending on your audience ..
- It's almost certainly a good idea to target young people with it ...

User avatar
Touch The Universe
KVRAF
3331 posts since 2 Oct, 2008

Re: EDM structure

Post Sun Aug 12, 2018 8:43 pm

good post
High Quality Soundsets for Lush-101, Hive, Electra 2, Diversion, Halion, Largo, Rapid, Dune II, and Spire.
http://www.touch-the-universe.com/

User avatar
DJ Warmonger
KVRAF
2810 posts since 7 Jun, 2012 from Warsaw

Re: EDM structure

Post Mon Aug 13, 2018 12:09 am

estellio wrote: How do others structure their EDM? Am I just overthinking this and it's actually pretty simple? Would appreciate all responses, thanks.
Well, just try and see what works? I always start with idea, composition and sound design. Only get down to arrangement once all the parts are aready to be played. Then you can just drop then one by one or even play the parts live.

I use Ableton with looped clips for that. Keep in mind that historically a lot of electronic music was created that way, with sequencers looping simple patterns. Certainly that's the way for progressive music, for EDM you may want to be brave and improvise or build dramatic and elaborate arrangements.
http://djwarmonger.wordpress.com/
Tricky-Loops wrote: (...)someone like Armin van Buuren who claims to make a track in half an hour and all his songs sound somewhat boring(...)

estellio
KVRer
22 posts since 12 Aug, 2018

Re: EDM structure

Post Mon Aug 13, 2018 1:55 am

DJ Warmonger wrote:
estellio wrote: How do others structure their EDM? Am I just overthinking this and it's actually pretty simple? Would appreciate all responses, thanks.
Well, just try and see what works? I always start with idea, composition and sound design. Only get down to arrangement once all the parts are aready to be played. Then you can just drop then one by one or even play the parts live.

I use Ableton with looped clips for that. Keep in mind that historically a lot of electronic music was created that way, with sequencers looping simple patterns. Certainly that's the way for progressive music, for EDM you may want to be brave and improvise or build dramatic and elaborate arrangements.
Arranging the different elements effectively has definitely been a challenge so far, but like you said, experimenting and seeing what works and what doesn't will probably be the best way to overcome this. I use FL Studio and hope to make more melodic kind of stuff, but I guess the main thing should probably be just spending as much time practising as possible, rather than anything else. Thanks for your advice, it helps a lot.

estellio
KVRer
22 posts since 12 Aug, 2018

Re: EDM structure

Post Mon Aug 13, 2018 2:03 am

sleepcircle wrote:music music music MUSIC MUSIC MUSIC MUSIC MUSIC MUSMUSMUSMUSMUSMUSMUSIC
DROP
hook: bow bippa-BOW DOW DOWWWWUB wubbawubbawubbawubba (and so on)
mus mus mus mus mus music music mus sic sic music sic music sic
mini-drop
hook: bow bippa-BOW DOW (etc. etc. etc.)
chill part.
repeat, slightly less chill.
BIG LEAD UP REV THE MOTOR BRRRRM BRRMM
biggest drop
un-tss un-tss un-tss un-tss wub wub chikkawikka chikkwikka scriggy-scriggy-scriggy wop
un-tss un-tss un-tss un-tss
blub-wub blub-wub
music music
mus
mus
the end




edit: okay but seriously.
think of it as a couple different goals:
1) keeping a balance between the familiar parts of the song that already exist, and new parts that expand on it.
2) keeping the intensity changing, emotional intensity, volume intensity, what-have-you. you are taking the listener on a JOURNEY. if you don't have a sense of change, of movement—if there's no movement, the journey won't go anywhere.
3) probably some others, but it's late and i'm tired.
Lol, I love your interpretation of EDM structure. That's probably pretty accurate, most of the time. The points you made were very helpful though, especially about how a song needs movement, otherwise it gets a bit boring for the listener. It's something I'm having a problem with at the moment, but hopefully I'm able to make things more interesting and complex as I learn new techniques and stuff. Thanks for your help.

estellio
KVRer
22 posts since 12 Aug, 2018

Re: EDM structure

Post Mon Aug 13, 2018 2:17 am

low_low wrote:Structure it such that ...

- People will dance to it
- Lights with flash to it
- DJ's will play it, and can mix it
- Club owners can stand to hear it
- Media will talk about it
- People will buy it
- Club sound systems can recreate it
- It isn't so repetitive that people get sick of hearing it
- It isn't so long that DJ's can fit it into their set list
- Your brand's value increases because of it

Optionally ...

- It's probably also good to have some themes that people can easily attach images to for display on screens, or to include your own images so that they can be displayed on screens
- It's probably also good to include phrases that can be yelled by the crowd either at each other or back at the DJ, such things as a millennial whoop or a phrase like "F^%k the police!", something people sing back
- It's probably also good to make it easy to create merch w/ it
- It's probably also good to make it fit in with other content creation, such as being able to produce tutorials showing how you created it, etc ..
- It might be a good idea to make it possible to make a radio friendly version of it (with duration and words that are appropriate, etc)
- It might be a good idea to make it controversial, depending on your audience ..
- It's almost certainly a good idea to target young people with it ...
You're very right. I haven't really thought about that side of things (apart from whether or not a song is danceable.) I'll be sure to keep those points in mind from now on, especially when I get stuck on things. Thanks!

estellio
KVRer
22 posts since 12 Aug, 2018

Re: EDM structure

Post Mon Aug 13, 2018 2:22 am

enroe wrote::?: Isn't it always the same:

-- verse 1
-- pre-chorus 1
-- chorus 1

-- verse 2
-- pre-chorus 2
-- chorus 2

-- break
-- chorus 3
-- ending
Probably is, now that you say it. Just about what to do in these different sections that's really bothering me now. I guess practise will be the best way to figure it out though. Thanks for your help.

Samplecraze
KVRist
318 posts since 9 Aug, 2004

Re: EDM structure

Post Mon Aug 13, 2018 7:11 am

Are we talking about composing EDM or producing it?

sleepcircle
KVRist
264 posts since 28 Nov, 2016

Re: EDM structure

Post Mon Aug 13, 2018 8:15 am

well not all of the 'difference and development' is that hard all the time
even doing the same hook with a different instrument provides a sense of change
or the same instrument but turning every quarter note into two eighth notes.
or doing it across multiple octaves.
or changing the drum beat in the background.
adding more instruments to the same melody.


but of course stuff like proper arrangements and harmonies helps too. do you know much about writing harmony and counterpoint? it'd be WELL worth looking into.


edit:
@samplecraze, it sounds a bit like he's talking about both

AnX
KVRAF
3007 posts since 17 Nov, 2015

Re: EDM structure

Post Mon Aug 13, 2018 8:44 am

DJ friendly intro
Build up
Break down
Build up
Middle 8
Wind down
DJ friendly outro

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