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Herobust is an electronic dance music and dubstep producer from Atlanta, best known for his hits “Debt N ‘Eight”, “Blockbuster” and “Giant Squiddim”, featuring MONXX. Giant Squiddim is named after the squelchy, distorted, chaotic synth sound that drives the track, inspired by the sounds of deep-sea monsters. In this video tutorial, Herobust will show you how he summoned the famous Giant Squiddim bass sound in Reason.
The Giant Squiddim bass sound was created using two Thor synthesizers and the BV512 vocoder. With some clever routing, these simple elements come together to produce a very complex sound. One synthesizer acts as the carrier signal, feeding a modified sine wave to the vocoder. The second synthesizer acts as the modulator signal, using a complex waveform to control the vocoder’s modulation effects. By programming the mod wheel to control the frequency response of both signals, Herobust was able to bring the Giant Squiddim bass to life.
Start by creating a Combinator device in order to control multiple devices at once. Drop in an instance of the Thor Polysonic Synthesizer and reset the device. Set the keyboard mode to monophonic and load a basic analog sine wave.
Next, route the carrier signal to a bandpass filter. Herobust uses Filter by Uberwave, but any CV-controllable equalizer will work. Use Thor’s modulation matrix to assign the bandpass filter to the mod wheel through a CV output. This will let you control which frequencies pass through the filter using the mod wheel, so you can make the bass squelch like an angry sea monster.
Now it’s time to add some character to the carrier synth. Sine waves don’t have much texture, so route the signal to an FM distortion unit to add some harmonics. Herobust uses the Mutagen multiband distortion plug-in to achieve a unique “gurgling” sound in the high-end that sounds very squid-like. Route this signal into the carrier input of the vocoder.
In order for the vocoder to affect the carrier signal, you’ll need to create a second instance of Thor and route it to the modulator input of the BV512. Reset Thor to its default state and load up two oscillators—one sine wave and one square wave. In the modulation matrix, assign the mod wheel to control the pitch of oscillator 1 and oscillator 2.
Now when you adjust the pitch and mod wheels, you’ll also adjust which frequencies the vocoder modulates. When set to extremely low pitches, you can hear each individual wave cycle, which creates an eerie “tentacle” sound.
Now that you know how to make the Giant Squiddim bass in Reason 10, it’s time to summon a deep-sea monster and start making music!