How to Make Progressive House like Matisse & Sadko

Keen to make progressive house EDM like Matisse & Sadko? Today we’re going through a tutorial to show us how they do it. Through the use of catchy melodies, energetic beats, and emotional soundscapes, they have become two of the most popular and successful progressive house producers in the world.

Before we get into the tutorial, there are a few key things you need to keep in mind if you want to sound like this much-loved progressive house duo:

  • Use a variety of different synths and real instruments. Matisse & Sadko are known for using different synths and real instruments in their music. This gives their music a rich and complex sound.
  • Experiment with different sidechain compression, distortion, EQ, reverb, and delay techniques. They are masters of using different effects to create their unique sound. Don’t be afraid to experiment with different techniques until you find what works for you.
  • Use catchy melodies and energetic beats. Their music is known for its catchy melodies and energetic beats. This is what makes their music so popular and danceable.
  • Create emotional soundscapes. Matisse & Sadko’s music is also known for its emotional soundscapes. They often use atmospheric pads and strings to create a sense of emotion and atmosphere in their music.

Examples of Matisse & Sadko songs that you can use as inspiration:

Perhaps you have heard (or danced to) the following songs, but if you haven’t, you know what you need to do.

  • “Shelter” (ft. Alok and Bipolar Sunshine)
  • “Together” (ft. Bright Sparks)
  • “Miracle” (ft. Alex Clare)
  • “Dawn” (ft. RUNN)
  • “Break Through” (ft. Jem Cooke)

Now let’s go through the tutorial to see how to make Progressive House like Matisse & Sadko.

A Tutorial on Making Matisse & Sadko Sound

There are 5 main steps to follow. 

  1. The Melody

Work with a piano sound, then write the melody and the chords

If you want to sound like Matise and Sadko, you want to have a deeper kind of emotion in your melody and chords. So use the key: A minor, which is essentially all the white notes. 

Starting on the root note, A, make an ‘epic’ kind of melody. Finish the melody with the same vibe. Now it’s time to write the chords. First draw the root notes. Then draw some other notes that sound good combined with the melody. Finally, finish the chords by stacking the notes from the chords. 

  1.  The Leads

When you have the melody, it’s time to make the leads.

The lead sound from Matisse & Sadko is quite similar to Martin Garrix’s (or the other way around?!). 

These are layers you need:

  • The lead from saga
  • The lead from mistaken
  • A Euphoric kinda lead
  • A wide supersaw lead to fill up the stereo field
  • A lead inspired by Jakko
  • Angel one lead
  • A guitar as it makes your drop sound a lot better 

For the Mixing, route them to a BUS so you can process them together.

Use the following Plugins:

  • An equalizer to cut out some nasty frequencies 
  • Some OTT to glue the leads together
  • A bit of dimension expanding
  • Some after equalising to cut out bad frequencies 
  • Some reverb to present the leads from sounding static and empty 
  • And finally, some kickstart

Then have a listen to the main leads all together.

  1. The Chords

Don’t slack on your chords, they are crucial to your sound. Experiment with a couple of layers to get a nice sound:

  • A wide supersaw
  • A piano sound
  • Strings
  • An arpeggiated chord
  • Another arpeggiated chord
  1. The Bass

Now it’s time to move on to the bass. For the bass, you don’t want to make it too aggressive. So NO rolling bass, but one simple bar note will do. Be sure to use a slide for that extra twist.

Now let’s get on to the layers:

  • A thin grunge bass
  • Another grungy kind of bass
  • 1 aggressive bass to make it not completely dull
  • And of course, the sub bass

Then add some ambiance FX

  • Vocal ambient FX
  1. The Drums

Sounding like Matisse and Sadko means you need to use a lot of fills:

  • Drum fills
  • A kick
  • Claps with a small variation at the end
  • Rides with the same rhythms as claps
  • Some xtra rides for the 2nd part of the drop
  • A snare roller for the 2nd part
  • Some pre-shifted claps
  • Drum loop with TOMS
  • And finally some FX

And there you are, a progressive house track like Matisse & Sadko!

Now, one thing to keep in mind is that in the tutorial a lot of the presets are from a preset pack. Progressive Sounds is a preset pack for Sylenth1 inspired by artists such as Manse, Martin Garrix, Matisse and Sadko and many more. It’s worth it because you’ll get 50 high quality presets. 

5 Specific Tips on How to Create Mattise & Sadko Progressive house

Before you go play in your studio, keep these specific tips in mind:

  1. Use a supersaw synth to create the main lead melody in your drop. A supersaw synth creates a very lush and wide sound. It is perfect for creating catchy melodies in progressive house music.
  1. Use a sidechain compressor to duck the volume of your bassline when the kick drum hits. This will create a pumping effect that is very common in progressive house music.
  1. Use a distortion effect on your bassline to give it a more aggressive sound.
  1. Use EQ to boost the high frequencies of your synths and pads. This will make your synths and pads sound brighter and more cutting.
  1. Use reverb and delay to create a sense of space and depth in your mix.

Briefly summed up, Matisse & Sadko progressive house EDM needs the following:

Synthssupersawatmospheric padsstrings
Effectssidechain compressiondistortionEQreverbdelay
Matisse & Sadko Sound

Now that you have learned the key characteristics of Matisse & Sadko’s progressive house sound, as well as some specific tips on how to create it, you are well on your way to making your own music that is inspired by this popular duo.

Remember to experiment and find your own unique sound. There is no one right way to make progressive house music, so have fun and be creative, and most importantly, share your music with the world!