Learn how to apply sidechain compression in Cubase to get your music pumping

Let your kick drum do the talking and hear your other instruments follow.

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Sidechain compression is a ubiquitous technique in modern dance music production. It allows you to choose one instrument that will affect the amount of compression on another instrument in your project. The go-to technique is having your bass or pad get compressed every time your kick drum hits, creating a rhythmic movement and freeing up some low-end content in your mix. Cubase’s Compressor effect can enable you to achieve this effortlessly.

In this video, Bruce Aisher shows you how to apply sidechain compression to your instruments. This gives your parts more movement and groove, and can drastically change the feel of an instrument. You’ll learn how to use Cubase’s Compressor to use one signal to reduce the gain of another signal in your project. You’ll also learn how the different parameters of the compressor can change the behaviour of the sidechaining.

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Bruce Aisher is an English music producer, music technology journalist and lecturer. As one half of the duo Brancaccio & Aisher, he has had club hits for labels including Bedrock, Parlophone and his own Player One Records. He regularly contributes to MusicTech content and is one of our Cubase Experts.

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