How To Make Music Like – Michael Bibi (Part 2 – Djbods)

How To Make Tech House Like Michael Bibi & Pawsa: Part 1

Despite me wanting to avoid Hanging Tree, in this video Djbods uses it as his reference track and attempts to combine it with elements from the Michael Bibi Remix of Eyes on Fire by Blue Foundation. Personally I’ve never really liked guitars in tech house, so this was going to be a challenge for me from the outset. This video has had 5,310 views at the time of writing and the comments are generally positive.

The video was released on the 19th Sept 2019 and is an analysis of an unfinished, and incomplete, track that Djbods was intending to release. The following key features of a Michael Bibi track he identifies as follows;

Kick – beefy with a lot of drum bus/saturation. Considers that it may be a heavily processed 909 kick but can’t replicate it
Bass – created a sub bass with Serum. Has a lot of dirt grit & ‘low end shit’
Clap – wide & splashy. He creates a rhythm clap pattern very similar to what’s in Hanging Tree
Hats – considers these to be very important and that each hat should be identifiable and clear in the mix – layering is important
Snare builds – unusual placing in what seems like random parts of track
Vocals – samples obtained from Splice and creates chops that have a call & response

He also identified the use of a hi-string synth in the background to build tension, some white noise shots that have stereo width and lastly a short snare roll fill.

Like Julien Earle did in my previous post, Djbods places a lot of focus on saturation and the use of Drum Bus in Ableton. Unfortunately the second part to this video was never made and, from what I can see, the track was never completed and released.

To follow along with this jist of this video, the only option really was to go with a track in the style of Hanging Tree (but without using the same vocal). This is what I came up with.

There is a reason why appalachian ballads aren’t used in tech house – the whole vibe just doesn’t sit right, unless of course you have the inspiration to use the Jennifer Lawrence performance of Hanging Tree. With over 20 million hits on youtube and 6 million on Spotify (I think it’s been removed from this platform due to a copyright infringement) that definitely was a recipe for success. For my track, rather than using the same vocal I looked for an alternative, which wasn’t easy. The final choice was ‘Calling Me Home‘ by Kathy Mattea.

Essentially with what Djbods is covering in his video, I feel isn’t a recipe for success. Although he makes some good observations about clarity of drums in the mix and also points out the not so obvious placement of snare rolls (and other FX) by Michael Bibi, the fact that part 2 was never published leads me to think he abandoned this track – or at least considered the end result not to be good enough to release.

From the advice given, here are some of the ways I implemented them in my track.

Beefy kick with heavy saturation
Gritty bass (from sample)
Call & response vocal

And this is the full arrangement which also shows the use of layered claps and open hats

It’s a country mile away from Hanging Tree and I used the guitar very sparingly without making it the focus of the track – instead I used it just to accent the vocal in places and as a dub like stab for ear candy.

Next up it’s another Julien Earle tutorial, but this one is a track from start to finish – Making A FULL Tech House Track Like Michael Bibi & PAWSA From Start To Finish [+Samples]

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