Trailer braams with Omnisphere 2

Love them or hate them, ever since appearing in Inception trailer track by Zack Hemsey, ‘braams’ have become an integral part of hybrid trailer tracks. Here we’ll take a look how to create massive trailer braams in Omnisphere 2.6.

STEP 1: SELECTING THE RIGHT SOUNDSOURCE

As usual, first step is the selection of best soundsources for the job. Since v2.5, Omnisphere has had 4 layers per patch which is more than enough to achieve that enormous trailer sound, so everything is going to fit into just one 4-part patch. This particular braam will be made of two lower parts – one percussive, kick-ish and other synth based. Also, there will be two higher parts to fill the spectrum. There are plenty of soundsources and synth oscillators in Omnisphere that can be successfully used for this purpose so you can experiment quite a bit. Here are the soundsources I used for this specific braam:

Percussive layer (impact / kick):

Low synth:

High synth #1:

High synth #2:

 

STEP 2: MAKING EVERYTHING BIGGER

Without any FX and modulation, braam sounds like this:

Not very massive and impressive, right?

Usual suspects for making the sound bigger in trailer music are compression and (harmonic) distortion and of course – reverb. But first, there’s another sound fattening tool in Omnisphere: Harmonia. It adds additional oscillators to every layer, making the sound much fuller. Here’s our low synth layer without and then with Harmonia:

 

Low synth without Harmonia:

 

Low synth with Harmonia:

 

Here are the settings used for this layer:

Harmonia mix amount is modulated with LFO to add more over duration of braam as well. After this, additional subtle waveshaping is added to layers to push sound a bit further.

 

STEP 3: ADDING FX

As mentioned earlier, compression, saturation and reverb are essential to trailer sound. These effects will transform our braam into production ready trailer accent.

First step is adding reverb to taste – longer plate or hall reverb is usually go-to in this case. After reverb, EQ is added to clean subs and low mids a bit and boost higher frequencies gently to add subtle sparkle. Finally, bus compression is added to glue everything together and make our braam super punchy.

 

Here are the final settings for FX master out:

 

Also, FX are added to individual layers. Low end is not needed here, so high pass filter is added to both high parts. Subtle distortion makes it cut more. Also, a bit more reverb and tape delay are added to keep sound more interesting and evolving.

 

Here are the settings for one of the high synth parts:

 

Here’s how braam sounds with FX added:

 

STEP 4: MAKING THINGS MORE INTERESTING WITH MODULATION

Final step in creation of our braam is adding modulation which will add more interest to it. One of the common techniques is adding some kind of pitch variation, which can be easily done in MIDI editor of every DAW, but for this purpose, pitch modulation is programmed inside Omnisphere.

 

This is how pitch modulation looks like for one of the high synth parts:

LFO1 is set to unipolar reverse saw which modulates coarse tuner in this layer which results in cool pitch bending sound. Same is done for other two melodic layers (except for percussive layer) and also another LFO is added to control the filter cutoff to make sounds more aggressive and open over time – and that’s it.

 

Mod matrix of this braam patch:

 

Here’s how our finished braam sounds like with FX and modulation added:

 

And here’s a short clip of our braam in context:

 

Download the braam patch here (Omnisphere 2.6.1 is required).

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