How to make Rumble by Skrillex & Fred Again
Long before Skrillex officially released Rumble earlier this year, fans were clamoring for the track from the time Fred Again.. first debuted it during his iconic Boiler Room set in 2022. Once the track hit streaming services officially on January 6th of this year, producers everywhere began to release their own edits and remixes of the track, and now Letsynthesize Academy is offering a proper tutorial as they recreate the production.
Working in Ableton Live, producer Dan Larsson begins the Rumble tutorial by playing his recreation alongside the original to show the accuracy before starting off with the percussion. The percussion work is simple, utilizing a fade-in technique to achieve the desired effect as well as a simple low-pass filter on the hi-hats for control. This is followed up by the vocal “Oooh” sound that hits halfway through the measure, and Larsson chooses to record this himself and bathe it in reverb and some light EQ to find the desired sound. Next up is the ever-important growl bass sound that Skrillex is known for. To create this, Larsson chooses to use a triangle wave and Coarse 1 on both of the operators and then automated the FM amount on operator B before applying some filtering to the sound.
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From here, Larsson focuses on perhaps the most memorable and difficult part of the track to replicate, the pulsing kick/ bass sound that drives the drop. Starting with a simple sine wave and short envelope, and then modulating through operator B, with a Coarse of 0.5, looking to apply some modulation only at the beginning of the sound with a bit of pitch and low pass filter with an opened attack. Beyond that, extra saturation is added, as well as EQ to pull out higher frequencies and a notch around 200hz to further model the sound. The next step was to add the next layer of frequencies, and he does so by duplicating the previous track and focusing his EQ on the 375hz area, adding more saturation, and finally a filter to cut off high frequencies.
Lastly, there is the squeaky synth layer, which is produced by a saw wave modulated by a square wave, that is two octaves higher on Coarse 4, while also modulating the low pass filter with some soft distortion. With the addition of two voices of unison as well as Reverb and some EQ work, the sound comes together with the final addition of the automated pitch envelope.
Check out the walk-through video from Letsynthesize Academy below! Don Larsson is kind enough to also share the full project session with curious producers.
Image Credit: Marilyn Hue / Provided by Warner Music Group