The white noise riser is considered to be an essential component of many modern electronic music genres. It serves a similar purpose as a long reverse cymbal. It gradually increases volume and intensity as a low-pass filter opens up when the sweep draws closer to the drop of a track. There are numerous ways to tailor sounds like the white noise risers. In these following steps, we’ll look at how effects and automation may help in this.

As usual, we have prepared a track in our SoundBridge: DAW with a short arrangement. It is a full mix but lacks a white noise riser. We will generate it with the help of Serum by Xfer. Let’s hear it.  

~Full Mix – Without White Noise Riser
This is a picture of my mix without any processing, taken before the making of the white noise riser.

How To Make White Noise Risers

We will use Serum on a new MIDI channel in the SoundBridge: DAW. We will draw a MIDI block with the length of our build-up and concentrate on the noise generator in Serum which can be found on the left side of the interface. Then we will select the “BrightWhite” preset from the drop-down menu. On the right part of the interface, we will engage the filter and press “N” for the noise generator to be controlled by the filter. Moving forward, we will look down to the LFO1 section. We will set the LFO rate to 8 bars and it is important to click on the “TRG ” icon so that the noise riser moves from the beginning of the LFO curve. Next, we will draw a curve to make a nice fade-in shape.

Finally, we modulate the LFO1 with the filter section by dragging and dropping the cursor icon onto the filter cutoff that one can see from the picture below. Let us hear where we are with our white noise riser so far.

~White Noise Riser
This is a picture of Serum with its noise generator and filter section. I used this to make the white noise riser.

That’s good, but it’s not done yet. To make the sound a bit more complex, we will layer Serum’s Oscillator 1 with the noise generator. To get a nice pitch modulation, we’ll modulate the LFO1 again, but this time with an OSC1 Coarse Pitch. We will get a wider sound by increasing the number of unison voices to 8.

~White Noise Riser + OSC 1 Layer
This is a picture of Serum and its oscillator that I used to make the white noise riser.

While working with Serum, the final step will be to move to its FX section. To polish the sound, even more, we will use the FX section. As one can see in the picture below, we have used some distortion for fullness, plate reverb, and an EQ to cut some of the low frequencies. Let’s hear it!

~White Noise Riser + OSC 1 Layer & FX
This is a picture of Serum and its FX  section that I used to make the white noise riser.

Now, let’s hear how does it sound in the context of the full mix.

~Full Mix – With White Noise Riser
Video Recap

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