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How to Make a "Reverse Reverb" Effect for Vocals in Ableton Live

Hi! My name is Boris and in this tutorial I'm going to show you how to make a reversed reverb effect. It can not only be used to spice up any vocal sample - you can actually use it on all kinds of sounds to create a very interesting feel. 

We're going to do it with Ableton’s stock “Reverb” effect, but you can use pretty much any reverb plugin you like.

This kind of reversed reverb effect is not something you would usually achieve with only a VST - you would have to do some reversing and audio bouncing to achieve this. 

The first thing you want to do is just copy your track. Let's leave the effects as they are.

Step 1: Initial Preparation (Freeze, Flatten, Consolidate, Reverse)

We're going to have to freeze the vocal track, flatten it, consolidate the clip and reverse our sample.

Let's right click the track's name and select “Freeze”.

It's going to take a while to freeze the arrangement for us.

Now we need to right click once again and select “Flatten” - and now our track is bounced to audio.

We can actually consolidate this clip, so that we can reverse it as a whole. All you need to do is just select the area you want to consolidate, right click and select “Consolidate”. 

All we need to do now is just select it and press “R” and that's going to reverse our sample. Don’t worry if your vocal isn’t aligned with your track at the moment, we’re going to reverse it back very soon.

Step 2: Adding Reverb to Reversed Track

Now let's apply some reverb.

The important thing is you want to apply 100% of Dry/Wet (Mix) because the only thing we want here is the reverb. Let’s not go crazy with the decay time here, because we've got quite a bit of talking.

Step 3: Freeze & Flatten Reversed Track with Reverb

All we need to do at this point is freeze the track once again and flatten it, so that we bounce it to audio once again.

Step 4: Reverse it back

Finally, let’s reverse it once again by selecting the clip and pressing “R”.

Let's play both the dry track and our “reversed reverb” track together:

At this point you might have to align the beginning with the dry track once again, but in my case it was done automatically.

You could always use this effect on something else - it doesn't have to be vocals.

It works great on synthesizers, could be used to create transitions on certain drum hits, you could use it on white noise and much more.

Thanks for checking out this tutorial!

Consider checking out our Music Production Academy - we've got start to finish courses for both beginners and more advanced producers.

Good luck with your tracks!

- Boris


See Also:

Ableton Analog Synth: Full Guide for Beginners

11 Mixing Tips in Ableton Live - Mixing Problems Every Producer Will Face

How to Master a Track like a Pro with Free Plugins Only in Ableton Live



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