Making Your PADS Work For You!
Personally, I really love PADs.
PADs within music are a phenomenal way to instantly increase the epicness in your tracks. They are slow-rising, warm-sounding, and add instant fullness into your track.
However, there is something to be aware of when using PADs, they take up a lot of space, making it hard for other instruments to stand out! If you have been making music for awhile, you know that having too many effects on sounds can clog up your tracks clarity, making it hard to mix!
So what can you do to take advantage of these warm, lush PADs within your song, but not allowing them to clog up the track?
I like to take advantage of the ADSR envelope. (Attack, Decay, Sustain, Release). A cool little trick is turning down the release knob. This shortens the tail, so you get that warm epicness, but when it’s done playing, the tail doesn’t drag on and overlap other instruments in your track.
Therefore, retaining that warmth of the pad, yet keeping it under control in the mix.
The trick with these effects in audio is using just what you need. This makes mixing a lot easier, and allows other tracks to sit in their own space as well.
The Side Effects of Not Much Release,
Dialing back the release knob can take away that epicness quite quickly, so you just have to keep this in mind, and dial in according to the mix.
I feel MOST of the richness is still there while dialing back the release knob, and overall there are more pros than cons cause it keeps the rest of your beat clean!
Also, when dialing back the release knob, you can sometimes create new sounds to play over top of your loops. These many times turn into quick hit sounds. I also find myself dialing in the attack knob to taste, finding that balance between the attack and release, where it suites the song and mix.