How Do I Make Hardcore EDM Music?

If there’s a music genre, there’s probably a hardcore version of it. Look at the Trans-Siberian Orchestra – they managed to give orchestral music a hard-driving edge. Hardcore rap, hardcore rock, and even jazzcore all have a following. So it should be no surprise the hardcore electronic dance music has a place in the musical lexicon.

But it’s rooted in EDM. Where screechy guitar solos and grumbly lyrics dominate hardcore metal, hardcore EDM is driven by samples or hooks that have been manipulated to the point of staccato stabs of static. Really, really fast static – up to 200 beats per minute. It’s all punctuated by voice clips from movies, cartoons, or television.

Although itself born from other genres, such as drum and bass, hardcore spawned a variety of its own subgenres. Gabber was an early incarnation of hardcore, produced as a reply to the supposed “snobby” Netherlands techno scene in the early 1990s. Harder, faster, and grittier, gabber often used distorted bass drums to create unrecognizable sounds.

Breakbeat hardcore, happy hardcore, and Frenchcore all put a different spin on hardcore. For example, happy hardcore incorporated more piano, vocals from men and women, and a slower beat (still a breakneck 165-180 BPM though). But they all retain the syncopation of the original.

Making Hardcore Happen

As with many EDM subgenres, before you can start making hardcore you need to understand hardcore. Listen to as many examples as you can, including works from Atari Teenage Riot, The Prodigy, and Mindless Self Indulgence. Once you understand what they have in common – and what they make their own – you’ll understand basis of hardcore.

Now it’s time to get outfitted with the proper gear. If you already have some experience in making EDM, you’re probably already set with what you need. Try to replicate what you’ve heard, what drew you to hardcore in the first place.

New to producing music? That can work to your advantage in some cases. You’ll be able to start your music producing journey without having to suppress other genres you’ve been toying with. Luckily, you don’t need a lot to get started.

Almost everybody on the planet working with EDM, including hardcore, do so with some kind of digital audio workstation or DAW. This software gives your computer the power of a studio without taking up the same amount of space in your room.

With the ability to plug in additional tools, such as a midi keyboard, drum machine, and monitors (speakers). You can start with as much, or as little, gear as you want. If you’re just starting out, it makes sense to start small. We don’t want to discourage you, but what if it doesn’t work out?

You don’t want to be out hundreds, maybe thousands of dollars for what turned out to be a short-lived hobby. If you already have a fast enough computer, you can get what you need for a start with very little money. Some DAWs are free and you’ll be able to find a wide variety for both PC and MAC platforms.

Pro Tools, Logic Pro, Ableton Live, Cubase, and Garageband are just a few of the commonly used DAWs around the world. Pro Tools and Ableton both offer slimmed-down versions for free while Logic Pro offers the same as part of a bundle.

These three DAWs are used by the premier hardcore artists in the world, so it makes sense to start your learning here. In all actuality, most DAWs have relatively similar interfaces. Yes, it makes sense to use the same systems used by the biggest names on the planet, but for building a foundation, just about anything will work.

What is that foundation? Learning how to arrange your tracks, setting the tempo, and adding instruments and samples. Don’t worry about fading, mixing, or anything to fancy yet. That comes later and may involve an upgrade to your DAW. If this ends up being something you might want to do for a living, you’ll have to pay out a little money at some point.

Make The Most of Your Money

Why not make that money go a little further by applying to Recording Connection? We offer Ableton and Advanced Ableton Electronic Music Production and Logic Pro Electronic Music Production programs that go into EDM music production, so that you can make as much hardcore and as many EDM genres and subgenres as you like.

But we also offer something no online tutorial, YouTube video, or traditional four-year university classroom can. The chance to be mentored by an industry professional in a real-world studio from day one. You’ll work side-by-side with an artist or producer that understands what it takes to make it in the music business.

It’s an ideal situation to network and take advantage of opportunities not available in other learning situations. But what will you do with those opportunities? That will be the deciding factor on whether or not you’ll have a career in the hardcore EDM.

Many of our top graduates have gone on to work at the studios they studied in, a different studio, or have even started a studio of their own. Think you’re destined to become our next top graduate? Apply today and find out.

Get your music production certification and build your music production and audio engineering skills by learning with an industry professional near you.