In a TON of hard rock songs, there is a distinctive swell of screechy string noise during a brief break in the music to create a sense of power and explosion before the music resumes at high intensity.

How can I get this buildup sound?

For example, at 0:55 in this song the effect I am describing is used:

1 Answer 1


Quite a bit of that effect can be accomplished by utilizing a high gain guitar amp, cranking it up and then compressing it with a good studio grade compressor. This results in things like string noise being amplified up while maintaining some control over the overall level. This type of sound was not really desired in other styles of music, but in rock, it seemed to demonstrate power and brute force.

  • This is helpful for getting the sound overall, but I'm speakiing specifically of how to get it when you want it quickly.
    – Bassinator
    Feb 25, 2018 at 22:05
  • You start with a high gain amp, an old tube Marshall or similar to get that crunch, come out of the axe into a stomp box compressor, and push everything till you get what you 're looking for. Experimentation often leads to answers. However I stand by my original answer as how it was accomplished in the studio. Feb 25, 2018 at 22:20

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