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Saeptus's picture
Los Angeles, CA
Mar 2004
9 years ago

In "40 Days" and "Crazy for You" (and in other Slowdive songs) they have this really ambient tone that sounds like a synthesizer tone. You can hear it pretty much throughout the song, but some times its less prevalent (i.e., the beginning of the 2nd verse). Its subtle but pervasive. Its like a watery sound without any attack. That's why I thought it might be a synthesizer. How was this sound created?

If it was through FX pedals and attack, how can I get that sound?

You can really hear it build in the second verse when they sing, "If I saw something new, I guess I wouldn't worry..."

Any help would be appreciated.

Fender Telecaster (MIJ)
Fender Jag-Stang (MIJ)
Alesis Ion Synthesizer
Waldorf Micro Q Synthesizer
Waldorf Microwave XTK
Dave Smith Evolver keyboard
Korg ER1mkII Rhythm Synthesizer

MXR Blue Box-->EHX Small Clone-->ProCo Rat-->EHX Big Muff--> Danelectro PB&J Delay --> Johnson Analog Delay/Echo --> Ibanez DE7 Delay--> Boss DD3 Delay

Roland JC-120 Amp

nobody's picture
Chicago, IL
Sep 2002
4 years ago

Multiple delays and reverb plus technique is about all it is. On some songs there is chorus/flange and pitch-shifting thrown in. But basically, cascade some delays one with shorter time, one with longer and set the feedback for many repeats. This helps blur the notes and helps eliminate the attack, then with massive reverb at the tail end it just puts it all as one smooth synthy sound.

"Question with boldness even the existence of a God; because, if there be one, he must more approve of the homage of reason, than that of blind-folded fear."
- Thomas Jefferson

thisfall's picture
Hamilton, Ontario
Dec 2003
2 years ago

Originally posted by nobody
Multiple delays and reverb plus technique is about all it is. On some songs there is chorus/flange and pitch-shifting thrown in. But basically, cascade some delays one with shorter time, one with longer and set the feedback for many repeats. This helps blur the notes and helps eliminate the attack, then with massive reverb at the tail end it just puts it all as one smooth synthy sound.

I don't know if I agree....I think reverb sounds best for a slowdive sound BEFORE all the delays. To me, afterward it sounds too undefined, you can't tell what's being played, it's too confusing sounding. Before, though, you can change notes/chords/meldoy and it seems to keep hold of the maody a lot better. Each splash of reverb blooms out into multiple delays.

fiveways's picture
.
Sep 2002
11 months ago

Originally posted by thisfall
I don't know if I agree....I think reverb sounds best for a slowdive sound BEFORE all the delays. To me, afterward it sounds too undefined, you can't tell what's being played, it's too confusing sounding. Before, though, you can change notes/chords/meldoy and it seems to keep hold of the maody a lot better. Each splash of reverb blooms out into multiple delays.

I assume from the units they use, esp neil it is delay-delay-reverb/delay patch on the korg routed in serial "reverb-delay"....that is just me though.

No one has to be alright all of the time.

nobody's picture
Chicago, IL
Sep 2002
4 years ago

Originally posted by thisfall
I don't know if I agree....I think reverb sounds best for a slowdive sound BEFORE all the delays. To me, afterward it sounds too undefined, you can't tell what's being played, it's too confusing sounding. Before, though, you can change notes/chords/meldoy and it seems to keep hold of the maody a lot better. Each splash of reverb blooms out into multiple delays.

You can put a little bit of predelay on the reverb (it actually sounds like Neil does add a bit of predelay) to define it a little more. But Slowdive did put reverb AFTER delays. The specific sounds asked about don't sound right with delay after reverb because you don't really want to hear each repeat of the delay. Reverb after delay blends the repeats together so it sounds more continuous.

Also, in the studio they most likely recorded the guitars without reverb and then fed the recorded tracks to the reverb to give them the definition you are talking about. But live, their sounds were a blurry mess and it was lovely.

"Question with boldness even the existence of a God; because, if there be one, he must more approve of the homage of reason, than that of blind-folded fear."
- Thomas Jefferson

geocox's picture
Seattle
Dec 2004
8 years ago

Originally posted by nobody
their sounds were a blurry mess and it was lovely.

That is the most succinct and accurate description of the band I've ever heard.
+1.

Geoff

current set up (aka "only bulky pedals, please")
beat up MIJ Jazzmaster
xp1000 - Maxon od820 - EH DMM - Ibanez cs9 - Digitech PDS 20/20 - Boss dd20 ->Fender Concert (II) 410