How To Make - Synthwave with The Midnight / 547

Synthwave with The Midnight

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This week Sonic Academy proudly welcome another new tutor - one-half of the Los Angeles based synthwave duo The Midnight, Tim McEwen, for a brand new course in How To Make Synthwave.

Taken from their highly acclaimed 2016 album ‘Endless Summer’, Tim remakes the stunning ‘Comeback Kid’ in Logic Pro.
With their signature retro synth sound, pop inspired vocals and a synth guitar solo that oozes cool, this track takes you to a parallel universe where it’s always 1984, everyone drives Ferraris and Lamborghinis while sporting Raybans and pastel suits, and it’s perpetually the last night of summer break.

This structured and easy-to-follow course starts with the kick, snares, claps and hats as Tim guides us through building the 80’s groove before moving on to the synths and bass sections. We then check out some fills and effects before we move onto that awesome solo and vocals, finishing off with the arrangement and automation tweaks.
Don’t worry about the long list of plugins used in this course, most DAW’s will have stock variants of the ones used here and we have added all MIDI files and renders of the synths in the resources - so everyone can follow along!

Check it out and learn from a true synthwave pro!


Great :slight_smile: Looking forward to go through this.

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Very excited to work my way through this! Thanks Tim!

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Amazing, thanks :slight_smile:

Great tutorial. I learned a lot of good stuff!

those vocals tho

Group Therapy With Above & Beyond Guest Mix this week? Same artist?

Great tutorial. I’ve been trying to figure out how to create guitar parts with synths and now I know! I always seem to learn more when I watch tutorials that use DAWs that I don’t use. I think it’s because I’m not trying to replicate every little thing. Instead, I’m just paying attention to the lesson since how it’s done is less important than what is being done.
Tim is also a very personable tutor who is easy to follow and fun to listen to. I didn’t catch myself nodding off after watching for a few hours.
The “blunders” and “goofs” added to the learning experience!

The initial synth is … DOPE!

cool course, very helpful !

It’s good but when he opens a synth and for the sound is like “I found it on some random bank and tweaked it from there” that’s all good, but how do we get “there” I copy what I see on the screen but there is obviously steps I can’t see behind other panels…


@alecritson I guess it keeps the focus on arrangement and mixing, not to get sidetracked into sound design, and there are other courses for that.

Thanks for doing this, Tim. Great course, great track :slight_smile:


Very good music and tutorial. I’ve enjoyed every second. Thank you very much!

Great tutorial!

Excellent music and tutorial, it was very informative.

Great all around. Really fun to watch and very informative. Thank you for taking the time to put this together Tim!

This is wonderful, he is a genious. But the problem is these stems are already so ready, subtle modiications wouldn’t teach much. if someone mixed Madonna’s Live To Tell (has veryy muffled stems but the final mix is amazing) it would be super helpful.
Big fan of The Midnight though!!

@cankucuck17 wow I also thinked about Madonna’s live to tell song some days ago, I’d love to know how emulate it.

About the dreamy synth… well, what do you have to do to actually make it so dreamy? At least with the main synth you see the process, but with the YAMAHA DX synth sound there’s no explanation at all.