I am interested in replicating an effect I often hear involving vocals and would appreciate any guidance on how it can be done. Very often, I will hear an EDM DJ play an Acapella of a song during the lull (or middle) portion of the song. Then as the song builds up into its second drop, they will often “catch” a lyric in what I assume is a loop and then change the pitch as the build-up progresses, so that the vocal becomes almost an intense “high-squeal” before it eventually drops off with the hook of the song.
(this isn’t very easy to articulate, so here is a link to a new song Afrojack played at UMF 13’ and he did what I am describing with an Acapella of Titanium;
The Acapella starts around 1:30)
I use CDJ 900’s and a DJM 850. I have tried to replicate this technique byusing a one beat loop, setting my pitch slider to “wide” and slowly increasing the speed of the song, while applying some “Up-Echo” effect. It doesn’t sound terrible, the vocal will definitely become a high pitched noise, but it doesn’t sound as good as what I hear from the professionals. Specifically, I can tell the vocal is in a loop and it seems choppy every time it loops back
over. When the professional DJs do it (including in the Afrojack clip), the vocal stays constant and smooth, almost as if it is one constant note being dragged out. For example, it doesn’t sound like it is looping back over. It sounds and feels like one constant long note that is building as the song builds.
Is there a specific effect on some of the higher end DJM’s that I’m not aware of? What about the RMX-1000 effect mixer, are they perhaps using that?
I'm not familiar enough with Afrojack's music or that song to know how it differs from the original…but after listening to it i would venture a guess to say that was a custom mix done in a studio vs live in the mix because of the way that it sounds smooth vs a loop that was grabbed on the fly as you pointed out…very few big name EDM dj's play like that now, instead they record a whole mix and play it back while pretending to mix and maybe triggering a premade loop or two at most…
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