But there are many reasons why a flanger should be in your producer tool kit. They can easily be used alongside other common DAW effects to produce complex and unique results.
How flangers work
Flangers work by splitting a sound source into two exact copies and delaying one, then altering this delay over time. Even though they will still be heard as a single sound, the timing differences between the two copies will cause phase cancellation, leaving small gaps in the frequency content.
The result: a sweeping, “jet plane” sound, heard on everything from the hi-hats in A Guy Called Gerald’s “Trip City Mambo” to the bass guitar in The Cure’s “The Holy Hour.”
To get a better idea of what flangers do, it’s worth spending some time experimenting with what’s available in your DAW. I’ll be using Ableton Live’s default flanger. It provides a parameter set similar to what is offered in other audio software, including Logic Pro and Reason.