Creative FXs with Tapasya

Tapasya is the moniker of Pune based DJ/Producer Sumit Mukerji. As an artist, Tapasya is smitten by atmospheres, grooves and melodies. This is prominent in his productions and most of his mixes. He is known to comfortably navigate from soulful downtempo music to late night progressive sounds while performing live. 

His music and remixes have been supported by industry legends such as Hernan Cattaneo, Ziger, Aman Anand, Savvas, Mike Isai, Baunder, Eli Nissan and many more! His releases are frequently on the beatport top 100 charts with one his releases reaching the No. 1 spot with the label Kosa! 

Over the years as a DJ he's had the opportunity to perform with Ankytrixx, Calm Chor, Color Ray, Chelakhov, Nishan Lee, Sequ3l, Zavion to name a few. 

We caught up with Sumit fresh off his recent release on Laika Sounds and he was kind enough to share some of the creative FX techniques he uses in his productions.

Reverb Pre-Delays:

So I do this effect quite a lot mostly with pads and longer sounds. But you can try it with any sound as well. It’s quite simple to do. The trick is to swift through the automation really quickly to give this detuned effect.

  1. Drop Ableton’s Reverb on to the channel that you want
  2. Automate the pre delay to the points you want the effect
  3. Tweak it to your liking

It’s basically trying to emulate the ‘Analog-drifting- that happens with analog equipment. The same note will sound different each time.

You can do the same trick on a stab sound. 

Effects chains for sound design:

This is something I like to do to make FX. I create a crazy chain here with Ableton Echo, Delays and I also like to add the Izotope Trash 2 plugin. It’s got crazy amounts of distortions, drives, buzzes, some insane stuff. 

You can just go through the presets alone and get some great tones.

You can add the delay to the chain after Trash 2 and then a very fun thing to do is open any synth and choose a random preset and run it through this chain to get some really cool sounds. Once I find sounds I like I go ahead and resample them and see how I can use them in my tracks. 

You can use any chain of effects and get some crazy output. 

Creating Melodies with the Vocoder:

This is a very cool trick you can do with the vocoder. Record your own voice, say anything you want even if it’s random. Open up Vocoder on the same track and select External under the Carrier. And select audio from another source in your session. Let this source be one of the melodic elements, like your pads for example. Play around with Formant, release and depth to taste.

You can further experiment with this by changing the pitch/notes etc. of the audio source and lock down on an output you like.

Sound manipulation with Granulators:

You can use 3rd party granulator plugins, for this one let me show you how to work with the Max For Live Granulator II.

  1. Drop a sample you like onto the granulator.
  2. Add Ableton's delay to the chain and a tuner. The tuner is to make sure you have your sound in key.
  3. Tweak the pitch on granulator to make sure the output is in key
  4. Scan through the audio sample in granulator and loop a section you like while playing some notes
  5. You can further tweak this sound in the Filter settings of the granulator, play with the cutoff frequency etc.
  6. Activate the FM, the possibilities are endless

Textures with Grain Delay:

The grain delay can do numerous things when you pair it with the right sounds. Let me show you how to get some textural elements out with Ableton’s Grain delay.

  1. Drop a grain delay to a melodic part/channel of your track
  2. Increase pitch to 12
  3. Tweak the spray setting to your liking
  4. Tweak the frequency to your liking
  5. Adjust Dry/Wet to your liking

Vocoder for drums & percussions:

This is a trick a lot of producers also use to make hi-hat/percussion sounds more crisp.


Huge thanks to Sumit for sharing his methods with us. 

You can follow & listen to Tapasya's music on the following links:

Tapasya on Instagram:

Tapasya on Spotify:

Tapasya on Apple Music:

Kavish 2 months ago
Love his music. Super tight grooves and progressions. Kudos for getting insights into his production process.
Rohan D 2 months ago
You guys are sharing some very cool insights and tricks! Thank you, trying these out soon
Rishikesh Sharma 2 months ago
Crazy stuff. Especially liking the pre-delay on the reverb and granulator II! Thanks sumit!
Rahul Gowda 2 months ago
Tapasyas music is so tight! Some super cool tricks in here too, trying them out this weekend. Thanks for the share again guys!
Clark 2 months ago
Simon 2 months ago
Great stuff again guys. These are some pretty cool effects. Tapasya's music also is super groovy. Loving it. Thanks for the share!
Rahul Verma 2 months ago
Amazing tips and tricks. Getting the Trash 2 for sure
Shruti Ghoshal 2 months ago
These are some really cool tips!