How important is the bpm when mixing broken beat songs?
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  1. #1
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    Default How important is the bpm when mixing broken beat songs?

    I'm having a really hard time mixing dubstep/drum and bass/grime...they all seem to have really different bpms and i find it hard to build a tracklist that flows well. anyone else have this problem? tips?

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    Tech Guru lethal_pizzle's Avatar
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    If you're trying to beatmix two songs for any length of time, it's important to have them at the same tempo (or occasionally half/double tempo) irrespective of what genres they are. Now grime/dubstep is typically 70/140bpm and D&B is typically 175bpm, so this can be difficult. There are quite a few previous discussions of 'how do I mix x with y' where the tempo is substantially different, you should check them out.

    BTW, I don't really recognise the genres you mention as broken beat:

    http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Broken_beat
    Last edited by lethal_pizzle; 04-17-2012 at 08:52 PM.
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  3. #3
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    i am just referring to tracks that arent four to the floor.

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    Tech Guru Bassline Brine's Avatar
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    You just need to focus on different parts.

    Drum and Bass: Focus on matching up the snares.
    Dubstep: Kick-pause-Snare-pause, so it's a matter of aligning that pattern.
    Breaks: Kind of a combination between the two... ish.

    Really, it's just a matter of becoming familiar with the tracks your playing. House is the easiest thing to mix IMO, and DnB (doing it right) is probably one of the trickiest. Just mess about until it clicks, and then it's like riding a bike. A TOTALLY AWESOME BIKE WITH DRUMS AND BASS.
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    Tech Guru mostapha's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lethal_pizzle View Post
    Now grime/dubstep is typically 70/140bpm and D&B is typically 175bpm, so this can be difficult. There are quite a few previous discussions of 'how do I mix x with y' where the tempo is substantially different, you should check them out.
    I don't understand why dubstep and d&b seem to go together in so many people's heads. They seem completely incompatible to me. Dubstep–even the crap I hate–mixes better with nu-skoool/psy- breaks than D&B. Everything just works.

    I hope that's what he's talking about, though. I'm not a connoisseur of dubstep by any stretch of the imagination, but I haven't seen a track that wasn't exactly 140 (counting snares on 3) or 70 (counting snares on 2 & 4).

    Quote Originally Posted by Bassline Brine View Post
    Drum and Bass: Focus on matching up the snares.
    Dubstep: Kick-pause-Snare-pause, so it's a matter of aligning that pattern.
    Breaks: Kind of a combination between the two... ish.
    I usually followed just the kick when I've mixed dubstep in the past…snares are too far apart and I thought they had too soft attacks to be really precise. Again, not a connoisseur…but that works for the 5 or so dubstep tracks I've ever spun (in breaks sets).

    Breaks tends to be kinda like sped up hip hop beats (at least in terms of patterns) or slowed-down D&B patterns…which implies you should concentrate on the snare/clap sound, which works. I occasionally used the kick depending on the pattern.

    You just have to listen to what's easiest with the tracks you have playing. One thing that sometimes helps is boosting the mid EQ on the closed channel (if your headphone cue is post-EQ), though that really helps more with figuring out which kick/snare is late when they start drifting (yes, I mean mid…you just want the snare or the attack of the kick…hi-mid on xone:92 can work wonders too). Just remember to turn it back down before you bring the track in unless that's a sound you specifically want.

  6. #6
    Tech Guru lethal_pizzle's Avatar
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    Well drum and bass is typically a two step drum pattern (snare on the 2&4, kick on the 1&3.5) at 165-180bpm. Breaks is typically the same at 130-140bpm. Garage is typically similar, with heavily swung hats at 125-135bpm. Dubstep follows the raggae/dub (hence the name) pattern of kick-kick-snare-kick at 140bpm.

    The only important thing, when it comes to beatmixing, however, is the tempo, the speed at which you tap your feet to the beat. Match them, you're golden.
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