Criteria of professional production
Part 2. Fills and transitions
What are criteria of professionally-made tracks?
Previously we talked about the most crucial aspect of professionally-made tracks, sound design. In this second part, I’d like to highlight one of the most underrated ingredients of production, the things I call fills and transitions.
Let’s assume you’ve made an amazing sound design, each and every element sounds perfect. What’s next? You go out to the level above and start building up a track as a whole. You making some loop, then another loop, that’s how your track is getting progression.
The things I call “fills” is made to build a connection between those loops and parts of a track to ensure smooth transitions. I’m not good in writing, so let’s just compare these two:
It’s not about sweeps and “woosh” effects, but about those couple of extra sounds in the middle at 4~5 second. Have you noticed it? Or here:
You see, these are very tiny tweaks, but it makes a huge difference, never underestimate it. It’s a sort of finishing touch that turns your track from “work in progress” feel to the finished product. Here are some more examples:
Some longer transitions between major parts of the tracks:
As more nicely you work on and polish these parts, the stronger connection your tracks gets, it literally tightens things up together like a glue.
There is no hidden secrets or shortcuts, behind every professionally-made track is hours and hours of hard work. just make sure to work on these transitions too — they really makes a tremendous difference. Listen how other producers do this job. Experiment and be creative.
P.S. This post is a part of the weekly “Advice” series. I’m happy to advise on such topics as production, performance, management, marketing, and design in the music industry and beyond. Send me your questions, too.