This drum loop has been processed by reducing the bit depth and down-sampling the clip until very little of it is reminiscent of it’s original state. As you can see in the image, the waveform has been reduced to a wide pulse that sounds very distorted (you might want to start at low volume). The top of the image represents a short section of the original audio, while the bottom is the processed version.
The bit depth was reduced to two, which allows for four possible positions for the amplitude of the waveform. Two above zero and two below zero. There are no zero crossings that aren’t straight lines, therefore the output sounds very similar to audio that has been badly clipped, but in my ears this sort of distortion has more charm than just clipping the waveform. The only other processing involved is automated pitch shifting from down four octaves up to its original pitch by about seven seconds into the audio. Here is where it sounds closest to it original form. Its stays there until about nine seconds in and then shifts back down minus forty eight semi-tones until it ends after almost twenty seconds.
Using the simple granular synth packaged with Pluggo I created this nasty tearing sound. Towards the middle it sounds like it’s causing speaker damage, but don’t worry your speakers are safe. The original waveform was a sawtooth before the grain table algorithms manipulated it as you can see in the image.
Granular synthesis involves separating a waveform into grains that can be rearranged either randomly or with various formulas resulting in dense or scattered clouds of sound particles. For more information about granular synthesis, check out this entry on Wikipedia.
Literally… Captured bouncing and rolling down the dense, Precambrian volcanic rock on the North Shore of Lake Superior in Minnesota last Summer. I recorded this sound with an AKG c4000b large diaphragm condenser microphone. No processing included. Just linear fades in and out.
How much processing can a voice recording take? I guess it depends on how badly you want to fuck it up. When it’s a recording of Donald Rumsfeld justifying the war on Iraq, I want to fuck it up as much as possible. That said, the recording is pitched and time expanded, run through a noise gate followed by a compressor, automated erosion, stereo delay (feedback at 80%, left at 5ms, right at 12.5ms, mix at 50%), and finally a reverb that creeps in with automated mix and decay. Enjoy!
A while ago I was sampling audio from a late night Tony Robbins infomercial. Today’s sound is the announcer during that broadcast saying, “Get the Edge”. All I’ve done to it is some time expansion and a bit of pitch shifting to give it a robotic sound. Nothing new, but fun nevertheless.