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Thread: Key of the track sorted, but beats are different.

  1. #1
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    Key of the track sorted, but beats are different.

    This is an unbelievably common problem i run into all the time.

    After a lifetime of looking at my songs ill make a tracklist trying to use the Camelot Wheel as best i can but when i practise the mix i notice mixing can be difficult because the beats aren't the same as in one can be more punchy and the next track is more flatter sounding with a heavier bass for example and it just sounds awful or far too noticeable a transition. Like i'll listen to DJ's who appear to be mixing on the fly and their next track is very similar in presence and they do it time after time, i find myself with about 3 tracks lining up and thats after about an hour haha.

    Just wondering how people organise their playlists to have it sounding smoother all round...?
    Making techno mixes, hoping they fall into the right ears.
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  2. #2
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    EQ is your friend. Key isn't the ultimate decider. Just practice mixing everything into everything. Eventually it all falls into place!

  3. #3
    Member Vernski's Avatar
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    Key of the track sorted, but beats are different.

    Know your tracks..boost your eq eg bass if the incoming track is a little weaker than the previous track. Make sure the gain is set according to each track.

    You should use the Camelot wheel as a guide, using it exclusively will restrict your mixing options.


    Edit

    Regarding track differences. You can keep your out going track a little longer as you gradually mix it out of the transition. By doing it subtly, the apparent difference won't be as noticeable as you've phased the next track in gradually.

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    Last edited by Vernski; 09-24-2015 at 03:53 PM.
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  4. #4
    Boring if all your beats are the same.

    Use it as an opportunity to bring the beats down a bit. Mix it smoothly.

  5. #5
    Member basilbrook's Avatar
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    I adjust the EQ after a certain number of beats

    I personally like to swap the treble EQ over first, then the base and lastly the mids (vocals)

    Took a bit of practicing to find 'my style' but I seems to work ok when I listen back

    check out my latest mix for an idea of how I do it https://soundcloud.com/basil/club-of-jacks

    Just listen to the transitions though

    I used the Camelot wheel for this on all transitions bar 1.

  6. #6
    Technoez Rek_Aviles's Avatar
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    Do not select your tracks by key alone. That's only a tool to help narrow down your selection, you still need to know your tunes and train your ears to pick the track that work best.

  7. #7
    Sometimes in a funny kind of way, tracks can sound effective when actually out of key if your mixing's up to it.

    It creates a tension, that can then be resolved.

  8. #8
    Member sephi's Avatar
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    Getting deeper into music theory than just the circle of fifths / Camelot wheel can help. There are other root/mode combinations that can work, even if they don't consist of the same set of notes.

    Don't get stuck in the Camelot wheel as a strict set of rules. It's one more column of information cluing you into the likelihood that a certain track will mix well with the current track, but it's not a 100% guarantee that the tracks fit, and it's not a guarantee that other combinations will go over poorly. A lot of intros and outros are just drums, so there isn't much (if any) tonal data that could clash. Sometimes a bit of dissonance is just what a transition needs; it can signal "hey, listen to what I am doing", or "we're about to change the tone of this set". Dissonance creates tension in need of resolution, which can complement a buildup before you cut out the outgoing track and drop into the next track (resolving the dissonance).

    If it sounds good when you're practicing or winging it, just make a mental note that that track sequence is good, and pull up that memory at the next show.
    "Real DJs do real things. Real things. Whatever the fuck that is." -oliosky

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    Thanks guys, yeah, I'm not using the camelot wheel exclusively I've only really just started looking at that to give me a bit more depth into knowing what I'm doing (or not doing (...usually the case)).

    I think my EQing probably could be better, I'm guilty of never touching the trim as I've always found it too sensitive, although I've just upgraded to a djm 2000 it might be a little better so ill focus more on that.

    its not for having the same sounding tracks either, its just when i listen to someone like, sorry non techno fans, Chris Liebing, i hear a lot of his tracks are very like for like but move on smoothly from the last to avoid same sounding repetition and I'm trying to find my own way of replicating that. Or another example is watching Carl Cox or Roger Sanchez mix, they seem to pluck out tracks out of nowhere 4 at a time and they all work...


    EDIT: in a nutshell I'm trying to find the feel of songs in the same way people look at key. I'm guessing its just down to knowing your tracks.
    Last edited by Morgan Tracy; 09-28-2015 at 03:21 PM.
    Making techno mixes, hoping they fall into the right ears.
    Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/morgan-tracy-6

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Morgan Tracy View Post
    Or another example is watching Carl Cox or Roger Sanchez mix, they seem to pluck out tracks out of nowhere 4 at a time and they all work...
    They've probably got mini-groups of tracks that work. So not completely off-the-cuff, and not pre-planned exactly either. Somewhere in the middle.

    Work on your eq'ing. Try two completely different sounding records deliberately and see how smooth you can get it. It's an art, for sure.

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