Production Tips, Chord Progressions, Sub Genres, and Artist Breakdown.
Lofi music exploded in popularity over the last decade. The nostalgic, intimate, and minimalist sound resonates with music listeners looking for an escape from the digital polish of modern music production. As a music producer, learning lo-fi production techniques can help you tap into this growing niche and bring a unique character to your music.
In this comprehensive guide, we will break down the elements that define the genres music production aesthetic. You'll learn about the gear, sampling methods, composition techniques, and mixing approaches used by renowned producers. With these insights, you'll be able to infuse your own productions with the elusive retro vibe.
Discover the history of lofi music and its origins across genres like hip-hop, house, electronic, and jazz. Study the production tricks and sample chopping workflows used by pioneers like J Dilla, Nujabes, Boards of Canada, and more. Whether you make hip-hop, chillwave, ambient, or downtempo beats, this guide will expand your production skillset.
By the end, you'll know how to craft soulful beats that evoke nostalgia. So grab your dusty vinyl, warm up your tape machine, and let's explore the art of music production.
Lofi Production Tips
This tutorial will give you a more comprehensive look into Lofi drum sequencing and rhythm production.
The drums are a great place to start, typically with a loose swung groove with syncopation, or a broken beat, or a drunken beat. Thinking like a Jazz drummer will set an appropriate rhythm.
Electronic drums or samples are typical, but it's not unknown for grooves to be played on a Drum Kit. It's commonplace for the drummer to include electronic drum pads to trigger samples as part of their drum kit. If a real drum kit is being recorded then warm vintage Microphones, such as Ribbon Mics with down-tuned, or muted drums will give you a suitable sound.
To a Lofi Producer, electronic drum machines such as the Roland TR-505, or the TR-808, or samplers with unconventional drum sounds are great to achieve that sound. Flying lotus has been seen using MPCs, a Machine, or a MIDI Trigger Finger to trigger drum samples and loops in Ableton, which I'm sure is a familiar view for lots of producers.
This tutorial will give you a more comprehensive look into Lofi Bass Production.
The bassline will often emphasize the groove and swing, with rhythms played in a way that gives a syncopated feel.
Instruments used to create bass sounds are generally the electric bass or a synthesized bass. The sound will often have an analog character, with a warm and rounded sound that is typical of using analog synthesizers or analogue recording equipment such as Tape. These sounds can be replicated without vintage or analogue equipment, they can be achieved using saturators, certain distortions, EQ, and synthesizer sound design such as pitch warping and other modulating techniques using DAW automation or, by using LFOs.
Chord progressions and melodic leads are normally played on a variety of keyboards or synthesizers, vintage and analog are the favorites for a spacey repetitive pattern or a slowly progressing melody. Synthesizers like the Korg MS-20, Rhodes Mk1, Prophet rev5 or a Roland Sh 101 are perfect for creating synth lines perfect for Lo-fi.
Guitars with heaps of effects pedals are also greatly suited to the genre, playing jazz-sounding chords such as Dmin11 and Ebmin11 and incorporating 7th chords. For non-guitarists, guitar samples can also be used with a combination of effects from your favorite VST collection.
As we know, samples are used throughout the genre, so MPCs and MIDI drum pads, or even keyboards can be used to trigger Loops or Samples. The majority of modern samplers will wrap loops, re-pitch, or chop samples, helping you to achieve a suitable sound.
I hope this leaves you with some insight on how to approach the genre and ideas on which tools to reach for.
Lofi chord progressions
Chord progressions often play a crucial role in creating the laid-back and nostalgic vibe, characteristic of the genre. While there is no strict formula for a chord progression, some common progressions are frequently used. Here's a simple and commonly used lo-fi chord progression in the key of C major:
Cmaj7 - Am7 - Em7 - Gmaj7
In Roman numerals, this progression would be written as:
I - vi - iii - V
Let's break down each chord:
Cmaj7: This is the C major 7th chord, consisting of the notes C, E, G, and B. It provides a stable and calm foundation for the progression.
Am7: This is the A minor 7th chord, comprising the notes A, C, E, and G. The transition to the vi chord adds a touch of melancholy and introspection to the progression.
Em7: This is the E minor 7th chord, containing the notes E, G, B, and D. It continues the mellow and reflective atmosphere of the progression.
Gmaj7: This is the G major 7th chord, formed by the notes G, B, D, and F#. The final chord adds a sense of resolution and brightness, leading back to the starting Cmaj7 chord if the progression loops.
The music often relies on simple and repetitive chord progressions, providing a relaxing and meditative feel to the listener. Remember that experimentation is key to finding your unique sound, so feel free to modify and explore different chord progressions and variations.
List of 10 chord progressions for Lofi
- Cmaj7 - Am7 - Em7 - Gmaj7 (I - vi - iii - V)
- Dm7 - G7 - Cmaj7 - Em7 (ii - V - I - iii)
- Am7 - Dm7 - Gmaj7 - Cmaj7 (vi - ii - V - I)
- Em7 - Am7 - Bm7 - Em7 (ii - vi - vii - ii)
- Fmaj7 - Dm7 - Gm7 - C7 (IV - ii - v - I7)
- Bbmaj7 - Ebmaj7 - Abmaj7 - Dbmaj7 (IV - bVII - III - bVI)
- Gmaj7 - Bm7 - Em7 - Am7 (I - iii - vi - ii)
- Cmaj7 - Fmaj7 - Dm7 - G7 (I - IV - ii - V)
- Gmaj7 - Cmaj7 - Am7 - D7 (I - IV - vi - II7)
- Dm7 - G7 - Cmaj7 - Fmaj7 (ii - V - I - IV)
These chord progressions provide a starting point for creating lo-fi music, but remember that this is a genre that encourages experimentation and creativity. Don't be afraid to modify these progressions, try different inversions or extensions, and add your unique touch to make them your own.
Examples of production techniques used by Lo-fi artists in cross-genres
Over the last decade, LoFi has been finding its way into many genres and subgenres, including Hip Hop, Phonk, Ambient, Garage, Pop, Jazz and House. Chances are you’ve been exposed to many tracks that feature lush and atmospheric synth lines with self-modulating pitch wobble, warm Tube distortion, and Tape saturation. The nostalgic character associated with the genre is being used more and more as producers come away from super clean and crisp, and almost sterile, digital-only productions.
When working with any genre or production style, it is worth finding reference tracks that will help you make compositional, mix, and arrangement decisions. It is a varied genre so I have included, what I would consider, as staple and influential artists of the genre.
Lo-fi Hip Hop
J Dilla: James Dewitt Yancey, better known as J Dilla, was an influential hip-hop producer and rapper known for his unique and innovative approach to beat-making. While not exclusively a lo-fi artist, his laid-back, off-kilter, and soulful beats have significantly influenced the lo-fi hip-hop scene. The use of swing, drunken beats, and obscure and jazzy samples set him apart from many of his contemporaries. He had a unique way of chopping and layering samples that created a distinct and organic feel to his tracks.
My favorite productions come from his critically acclaimed instrumental album "Donuts" (2006), released just three days before his untimely death, which is considered one of his most significant achievements. The album showcases his exceptional abilities as a producer, incorporating a wide range of samples and creating an emotionally resonant experience for the listener.
J Dilla production techniques
Sampling: J Dilla was a master at finding obscure and soulful samples from a wide range of sources, including jazz records, soul tracks, and even video game soundtracks. He often used vinyl records to find unique and rare samples to create the foundation of his beats.
Chopping: Known for his precise and intricate chopping of samples. He would isolate specific sections of a sample and rearrange them to create entirely new melodies and rhythms. His use of creative and unpredictable chops added a distinctive swing and groove to his beats.
Swing, Groove and Unquantized beats: Dilla's beats were famous for their natural-sounding swing and groove. He often programmed his drum patterns to create a human-like feel, adding slight timing variations to mimic live drumming. This technique gave his beats a laid-back and off-kilter vibe that became one of his signature sounds, which is also known as a drunken beat. He claimed his grooves and swing came from "not reading the instructions" on quantization from his MPC manual. You can also hear tempo changes where he has manually sped up and slowed down the samples throughout the tracks. This is most noticable with the track "people".
- Use of Analog Gear: Known for his use of analog gear, including samplers like the Akai MPC series. These samplers had a unique sound and workflow that influenced the character of his productions.
- Emphasis on Bass: This is common to most Hip Hop, particular attention was paid to the low-end frequencies in his beats, crafting deep and booming basslines that added weight and power to his tracks.
- Filter Techniques: He employed filter sweeps and other effects to add movement and dynamics to his samples, creating a sense of progression within the track arrangement.
- Live Instrumentation: While primarily known for sampling, Dilla also incorporated live instrumentation into his productions, playing keyboards and other instruments to add additional layers of texture and depth.
- Layering Vocal Samples: Vocal samples were often used in his tracks, layering them in creative ways to add hooks and melodic elements to his tracks.
J Dilla's production techniques were groundbreaking and continue to influence producers in hip-hop and beyond. His innovative use of sampling, swinging drum patterns, and soulful aesthetics have made him a legendary figure in the music production world, and his legacy lives on through his timeless and influential body of work.
Nujabes: Nujabes, also known as Jun Seba, was a Japanese producer and DJ who played a significant role in popularizing hip-hop and chillhop music. His soulful and jazzy beats have left a lasting impact on the genre. Nujabes unfortunately passed away in 2010, but his music continues to inspire artists and listeners worldwide.
His music music was characterized by its soothing and introspective nature, combining elements of jazz, soul, and hip-hop. He had a remarkable ability to blend samples from various genres seamlessly, creating a unique and captivating sound. Many of his tracks featured melodic and atmospheric beats that became synonymous with the genre.
Some of Nujabes' most popular and beloved tracks include "Aruarian Dance," "Feather," "Modal Soul," "Luv(sic) Part 2," and "Reflection Eternal." His music often evoked a sense of tranquility and nostalgia, making it a favorite choice for relaxation, studying, and introspection.
Despite his departure, Nujabes' influence on the lo-fi hip-hop and chillhop scenes persists to this day. His unique style and musical vision continue to inspire countless producers and artists, and his music remains a cherished and timeless treasure for listeners seeking a calming and soulful experience through sound. Nujabes' legacy as a pioneer of lo-fi music will undoubtedly endure for years to come.
Nujabes Production techniques
Sampling: Nujabes was a master at finding and manipulating samples from a wide range of genres, including jazz, soul, and classical music. He carefully selected and chopped samples to create melodic loops and instrumental phrases that formed the foundation of his tracks.
Layering: Known for his skillful layering of different elements to craft rich and textured compositions. He combined sampled melodies, live instrumentation, and electronic elements to create a seamless blend of sound.
Live Instrumentation: In addition to sampling, Nujabes incorporated live instrumentation into his productions. He played various instruments himself, including piano, keyboards, and guitar, which added a human touch and organic feel to his tracks.
Jazz Influence: Nujabes had a strong affinity for jazz music, and this influence was evident in his productions. He often incorporated jazz chords and progressions, as well as jazz instrumentation, into his beats, creating a smooth and soulful sound.
Drum Programming: He used unique drum programming style that combined elements of hip-hop and jazz. His beats featured intricate and dynamic drum patterns that added a sense of rhythm and groove to his tracks.
Use of Vinyl Crackles and Dust: To add warmth and nostalgia to his productions, Nujabes often integrated vinyl crackles and dust sounds into his beats. These elements contributed to the timeless and atmospheric quality of his music.
Emotionally-driven Arrangements: Nujabes had a keen sense of arranging his tracks to evoke specific emotions and moods. He carefully crafted the flow of his compositions, allowing melodies and instrumentation to build and subside in a way that engaged listeners on an emotional level.
Beat Syncopation: Nujabes utilized syncopation in his beats, introducing off-beat accents and rhythms that added complexity and interest to his tracks.
Sample Pitching: He skillfully pitched and manipulated samples to fit the desired key and mood of the track, making them seamlessly integrate with original compositions and live instrumentation.
Mixing and EQ: Nujabes' mixing and EQ techniques were vital in achieving the balance and clarity of his productions. He paid careful attention to each element's placement in the mix, creating a cohesive and immersive listening experience.
Overall, Nujabes' production techniques were characterized by his passion for storytelling through music, his seamless blending of different genres, and his dedication to creating emotionally evocative soundscapes. His contributions to the genre continue to inspire producers seeking to infuse their music with soulful, jazzy, and atmospheric elements.
Boards of Cananda; To me, this was the first time lo-fi music captured my attention, the atmospheric pitch and time wrapping, vinyl crackle, noise, and tape effects used throughout their productions, at a time when it felt like electronic artists were battling to get the cleanest most "professional" sounding mixes.
Their sound often evokes a sense of nostalgia and dream-like atmospheres, characteristics that resonate strongly with lo-fi music enthusiasts. The incorporation of lo-fi elements has made Boards of Canada a favorite among fans. Although sometimes categorised as IDM, downtempo, and ambient, their music aligns well with the laid-back and introspective vibe commonly found in the lofi genre.
Boards of Canada production techniques
Sampling: Sampling plays a central role in Boards of Canada's production process. They sample from a wide range of sources, including old records, educational films, documentaries, and more. These samples form the basis of their tracks and contribute to the nostalgic and atmospheric vibe of their music.
Analog Synthesis: Boards of Canada frequently use analog synthesizers to create warm and organic sounds. They manipulate synthesizers to generate lush pads, haunting textures, and unique sonic elements that define their distinctive sound.
Warping and Pitch Shifting: The duo is known for warping and pitch-shifting their samples and synth elements. This technique adds an otherworldly and surreal quality to their music, creating a sense of timelessness and mystery.
Field Recordings: Boards of Canada incorporates field recordings into their tracks, capturing sounds from nature, old television broadcasts, and everyday life. These recordings contribute to the immersive and storytelling aspect of their music.
Tape Manipulation: The duo often employs tape manipulation techniques, such as tape delays and tape saturation, to add warmth and vintage character to their productions. These techniques contribute to the retro feel that is a hallmark of their sound.
Melodic Layering: Boards of Canada creates intricate and layered melodies, blending different synth lines and samples to form rich and immersive soundscapes. Their use of subtle counterpoint and harmonic progression adds depth and complexity to their tracks.
Reverb and Spatial Effects: They use reverbs and spatial effects to create a sense of depth and space in their productions. These effects enhance the dreamy and ethereal atmosphere of their music.
Beat Programming: While their music is primarily known for its atmospheric qualities, Boards of Canada skillfully crafts intricate and subtle drum patterns. Their beat programming often involves offbeat rhythms and syncopation, adding a unique and groovy touch to their tracks.
Ambient Textures: Ambient textures and soundscapes are prevalent in their music. Boards of Canada uses these elements to create an immersive and introspective listening experience.
Vinyl and Lo-Fi Emulation: To achieve a vintage sound, Boards of Canada may use emulations of vinyl crackles and hiss. These elements contribute to the nostalgic and warm vibe of their tracks.
Overall, Boards of Canada's production techniques are characterized by their attention to detail, use of nostalgic and lo-fi elements, and their ability to craft emotive and evocative soundscapes. These techniques have earned them a dedicated following and have influenced a generation of music producers seeking to create rich and atmospheric electronic music.
Although Flying Lotus incorporates many different styles, his music shares a lot of similarities with the genre. He creates dreamy and atmospheric soundscapes with influences of Jazz, Hip-hop, downtempo, and House. His tracks often feature ethereal and hazy qualities, which can resonate with fans seeking a similar mood and vibe. Additionally, Flying Lotus's exploration of glitchy and experimental production techniques has influenced many artists who seek to incorporate unconventional and textured elements into their music. Some producers have drawn inspiration from his creative approach and incorporated aspects of his sound into their own productions.
His innovative and boundary-pushing music has undoubtedly left a mark on the electronic music landscape. His exploration of dreamy and atmospheric soundscapes has resonated with many listeners, including those who appreciate the genre's nostalgic and introspective qualities.
Flying Lotus production techniques
Layering and Sound Collage: Flying Lotus often creates complex and intricate tracks by layering multiple sounds and samples. He weaves together various textures, melodies, and rhythms to form rich and immersive soundscapes, creating a sense of depth and complexity in his music.
Sampling and Manipulation: Like many electronic producers, Flying Lotus heavily relies on sampling to build his tracks. He samples from a wide array of sources, ranging from old jazz records to obscure audio clips. He then manipulates these samples, pitch-shifting, time-stretching, and applying various effects to transform them into unique sonic elements.
Experimentation with Effects: Flying Lotus is known for his adventurous use of effects, often pushing the boundaries of sound manipulation. He employs a variety of effects, such as granular synthesis, glitch effects, delays, side chaining and reverb, to create unconventional and otherworldly sounds.
Beat Programming: Flying Lotus is a master of beat programming, crafting intricate and dynamic drum patterns. He often uses offbeat rhythms, irregular time signatures, and syncopation to add a unique and groovy touch to his tracks.
Live Instrumentation: Flying Lotus incorporates live instrumentation into his productions, playing various instruments himself or collaborating with other musicians. He may add elements such as live drums, synthesizers, bass, and guitar to enhance the organic and human feel of his music.
Modular Synthesis: He utilizes modular synthesizers, a type of analog synthesizer, to create custom and evolving sounds. Modular synthesis allows for a more hands-on and experimental approach to sound design, giving Flying Lotus the ability to craft truly unique and evolving textures.
Vocal Processing: Flying Lotus often employs creative vocal processing techniques, manipulating vocals with pitch-shifting, time-stretching, and glitch effects. This approach adds a distinct and otherworldly quality to the vocal elements in his tracks.
Ambience and Atmosphere: Creating a sense of atmosphere is a hallmark of Flying Lotus's productions. He uses ambient textures, field recordings, and spatial effects to add depth and immersion to his music.
Collaborations and Remixes: Flying Lotus frequently collaborates with other artists and remixes tracks, incorporating their elements into his own distinctive style. His collaborations often result in unique and genre-blending productions.
Emotion-Driven Composition: Above all, Flying Lotus's production techniques are driven by emotion and storytelling. He aims to evoke feelings and create sonic journeys for the listener, using his technical prowess to craft deeply immersive and emotive music.
Overall, Flying Lotus's production techniques are characterized by their experimental nature, technical prowess, and dedication to pushing the boundaries of electronic music. His innovative approach to sound design and composition has made him a revered figure in the electronic music community and a source of inspiration for many aspiring producers.
Ross from friends
Ross From Friends is the stage name of Felix Clary Weatherall, a British electronic music producer and DJ known for his unique blend of lo-fi, house, and techno elements. He takes inspiration from a wide range of musical styles, including jazz and hip-hop, to create his distinct sound.
Ross From Friends gained significant attention in the electronic music scene with the release of his debut EP, "You'll Understand," in 2016. The EP featured a mix of laid-back, hazy beats and dreamy textures, which caught the attention of lo-fi and house enthusiasts alike. His use of warm and nostalgic samples, along with a dreamy production style, created a captivating and immersive listening experience.
In 2018, he released his breakthrough track "Talk To Me You'll Understand," which became a sensation in the electronic music community. The track exemplifies Ross From Friends' signature style, combining lo-fi house elements with emotive melodies and a deep, infectious groove.
The term "lo-fi house" refers to a subgenre of house music that embraces the raw, gritty, and rough-around-the-edges sound. It often incorporates the use of low-fidelity production techniques, vintage synthesizers, and distorted samples, creating a nostalgic and intimate atmosphere.
Ross From Friends' music aligns well with the lo-fi house genre due to his use of dreamy aesthetics, vintage soundscapes, and soulful textures. His tracks often have a dreamy and hypnotic quality that draws listeners into a nostalgic and introspective world.
While he may not be limited to producing strictly lo-fi house, Ross From Friends has certainly become a prominent figure in the genre. His innovative approach to blending lo-fi elements with house and techno has garnered him a dedicated following and solidified his place within the contemporary electronic music landscape.
Ross From Friends Production Techniques
Sampling and Sample Manipulation: Ross From Friends is known for his skillful use of sampling in his productions. He often samples from various sources, including old records, movies, and vintage synths. He then manipulates these samples, applying effects, pitch-shifting, and time-stretching to create unique and textured sounds.
Use of Vinyl Crackles and Dust: To add a nostalgic feel to his music, Ross From Friends often incorporates vinyl crackles, pops, and dust sounds. These elements give his tracks a warm and vintage character.
Analog Synthesis: He frequently uses analog synthesizers to create rich and warm soundscapes. Analog synths offer a more organic and natural sound compared to digital synths, adding depth and character to his compositions.
Live Instrumentation: Ross From Friends incorporates live instrumentation into his productions, playing various instruments himself. He often plays guitar, keyboards, and other instruments to add a human touch and organic feel to his tracks.
Beat Programming: He is skilled at crafting intricate and groovy drum patterns. Ross From Friends' beat programming often involves offbeat rhythms, syncopation, and creative use of percussion samples to create a unique and dynamic groove.
Use of Field Recordings: Ross From Friends includes field recordings in his tracks, capturing sounds from his surroundings or while traveling. These recordings add a sense of place and atmosphere to his music.
Layering and Textures: His music features intricate layering of sounds, blending different elements to create lush and immersive compositions. He weaves together melodies, harmonies, and textures to craft rich and emotive soundscapes.
Ambient Textures and Soundscapes: Ross From Friends incorporates ambient textures and soundscapes into his tracks. These elements add depth and atmosphere, creating a dreamy and introspective listening experience.
Processing and Effects: He employs a variety of processing and effects, such as reverbs, delays, and modulation, to shape and color his sounds. These effects contribute to the unique and evolving nature of his productions.
Emotional Storytelling: Above all, Ross From Friends' production techniques are driven by emotion and storytelling. He aims to evoke feelings and create a narrative through his music, using technical expertise to craft emotionally resonant and captivating compositions.
Overall, Ross From Friends' production techniques are characterized by their sentimental elements, warm textures, and attention to detail. His ability to blend different genres and create emotive soundscapes has earned him recognition as an innovative and talented electronic music producer.
Burial is the stage name of William Emmanuel Bevan, a British electronic music producer and one of the most influential figures in the underground electronic music scene. While he is not directly associated with the genre, his music has strong connections to the subgenre known as "lo-fi garage" or "future garage."
His style can be described as a fusion of ambient, dubstep, and garage music, characterized by its dark, atmospheric, and emotionally charged soundscapes. His tracks often feature haunting vocal samples, intricate percussion, and deep basslines, which contribute to the unique and evocative atmosphere of his music.
The term "lo-fi garage" or "future garage" emerged to describe a subgenre of electronic music that draws inspiration from garage and 2-step rhythms while incorporating lo-fi production techniques and ambient elements. This genre is often characterized by its moody and atmospheric qualities, and it resonates with listeners who appreciate a more introspective and emotive side of electronic music
Burial's music shares some commonalities with the lofi due to sharing similar production methods, such as vinyl crackles and gritty textures, that contribute to a raw and intimate feel in his compositions. His tracks often convey a sense of nostalgia and melancholy, which aligns well with the emotions evoked by lofi garage music.
While Burial's sound is more complex and textured than traditional lo-fi music, his music's mood and atmosphere have made him a significant influence on artists within the lo-fi garage and future garage scenes. Many garage producers have cited him as an inspiration for their work, and his ability to create emotionally resonant music with soulful elements has contributed to the development and growth of the genre.
While he may not be directly classified as a lo-fi artist, his music has strong connections to the lo-fi garage and future garage genres due to his production techniques and emotive soundscapes. His influence on the underground electronic music scene is significant, and he continues to be revered as a pioneering and innovative artist in the realm of atmospheric electronic music.
Probably my favorite album; Untrue
Burial Production techniques
His production techniques have been praised for their unique and emotive qualities. While Burial's production methods are shrouded in mystery, some aspects of his techniques have been discerned from interviews and analysis. Here are some key production techniques associated with Burial's sound:
Sampling: Sampling plays a central role in Burial's music. He is known for using computer games and vinyl records to sample old soul, R&B, and electronic music, among other genres. He manipulates these samples to create haunting and atmospheric textures that evoke a sense of nostalgia.
Warping and Pitch-Shifting: Burial often warps and pitch-shifts his samples to create a dreamlike and otherworldly feel. These manipulations add a sense of timelessness and surrealism to his music.
Use of Ambient Sounds: Burial incorporates various ambient sounds and field recordings into his tracks. These could be sounds of rain, city noises, or distant chatter, which contribute to the immersive and atmospheric nature of his music.
Layering and Textures: Burial's tracks often feature intricate layering of sounds, combining multiple samples and textures to create a sense of depth and complexity.
Vocal Processing: Burial is known for his unique vocal processing techniques. He often uses pitch-shifting, time-stretching, and reverb on vocal samples to create ethereal and haunting vocal effects.
Beat Programming: His drum programming is characterized by its syncopated and offbeat rhythms. Burial's beats often feature irregular patterns and ghostly echoes, adding a sense of unpredictability and groove to his tracks. He is known for not using quantize when sequencing drum patterns instead he uses an off-the-grid approach.
Use of Reverb and Delay: Burial skillfully uses reverb and delay to create vast and immersive sonic spaces. These effects contribute to the cavernous and haunting quality of his music.
Subtle Use of Bass: Burial's use of bass is often subtle yet powerful. He crafts deep, sub-bass elements that add weight and emotion to his compositions.
Aesthetics: Burial's sound is often associated with emotional aesthetics. He embraces imperfections, vinyl crackles, and other artifacts that give his music a nostalgic and intimate character.
Emotive Composition: Above all, Burial's production techniques are driven by emotion and storytelling. His music conveys a sense of introspection, melancholy, and urban isolation, creating a powerful emotional connection with listeners.
It's worth noting that Burial's production techniques are unique and continuously evolving, and he has managed to maintain an enigmatic persona throughout his career. His innovative approach to sound design and composition has made him a highly respected and influential figure in the electronic music world.
In closing, the genre has come a long way from its humble beginnings in underground genres like hip-hop and house. It has since blossomed into a full-fledged music movement that crosses genres and cultures. At its core, it captures a universal longing for simpler times, imperfections, and raw humanity in music production and composition.
By studying the sampling methods, gear, production tricks, and musical styles of the genre's pioneers, beatmakers today can infuse their own productions with the genre's elusive magic. This requires an open mind, a willingness to experiment, and a focus on evoking nostalgic emotion rather than chasing perfection. More than a particular technique or sound, it is a mindset - a stripped-down, imaginative approach that values organic textures and timeless feelings. Immersing yourself in the dusty world of lo-fi is the best way to master its aesthetic - and let your own signature style shine through.
Lofi Samples and production tools will give you sounds, rhythms, grooves, and compositional techniques for your music production journeys.