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March 2012 l 25


through the importance of creating a high-quality rhythm track using Logic. In his ‘Bass and Kick – a Pivotal Relationship’ presentation, Aisher demonstrates how to strengthen the bond between the kick drum and bass line using EQ, compression and layering as well as understanding the importance of remembering “not to over process things because sometimes you cannot make things sound exactly how you want them too. “It is all about finding the right sounds in the first place,” states Aisher. “How do you decide what kick drum to use? And where does this come from? When a kick drum is struck, the skin stretches and creates different levels of pitch – these are things we should be thinking about when choosing.” The room takes a darker feel as Aisher dives into the low end. “Bass has more elements to play around with. If you want to create a dynamic sound it is all about space – hitting bass where kick drums aren’t. Layered bass can be manipulated with the compressor and changing the balances of the oscillators can vary the low end of the bass line,” he says, as the classroom adopts the feel of a dark electro club in Dalston. Most attendees can’t wait to put Aisher’s advice to good use. “It is all about how all these elements can work together; and then break the rules, so to speak,” he adds.

I now have a vision of

marketing my brand, how it will look and most importantly, the sort of sounds I am going to use. So how do I make it perfect for press? Enter Matt Colton, mastering engineer and vinyl junky based at Air Studios in London. With more clients then the number of faders on the Euphonix CS3000 in front of me, Colton presents a wealth of expertise in making music the real deal.

“Mastering is like framing a painting,” Colton initiates. “The painting is the artwork, but how you frame it will then create the perception of that artwork.” What follows is

Bruce Aisher hosts a Q&A session with Toolroom Knights’ Stuart Knight

Matt Colton gave a ‘mastering masterclass’

high-mids, whereas an SSL compressor will be more direct and prevalent sounding.” With my tracks mastered and my identity established I am

“It is more beneficial to promote your music to an audience in a live setting than it is on the internet “ Hal Ritson, Young Punx

nothing short of a master class. Colton explains the uses of all the tools at an engineers’ disposal, from limiters to de-essers to tape simulators (although he insists that nothing would ever sound better than an original Studer B67). “It really is all about having the knowledge to know what tools to use for the job. An example of this is when choosing a compressor. Valve compressors are warm and more analogue sounding but hold back on the

now ready to take this to a live audience. Hal Ritson is the perfect person to lead the next session. A member of the Young Punx, Ritson is responsible for the production of Dizzie Rascal’s live show. “It is more beneficial to

promote your music to an audience in a live setting than it is on the internet,” he says. “Your reach in a live situation is better because 50 people hear your tracks in one place as opposed to being in a wash

of thousands of other producers online.” It’s clear that one tool in particular has helped bring electronic music to the stage: “Ableton revolutionised the live music scene,” Ritson explains. “Essentially we are turning up and pressing play through Ableton, then drop the top line elements over it for spectacle.” Spectacle. This is the essential

ingredient. This is what makes people remember you and return for your next show. Ritson agrees: “A lot of time electronic acts are not actually playing any music – I am pretty sure Daft Punk never play an instrument on stage but revellers say it is the best live act they have ever seen!” There’s been a real buzz to this first LEME weekend. Alchemea’s Mike Sinnott is buzzing too: “I have been so impressed with everyone who Sample Magic has helped us get

down to talk from record label owners, top producers and SoundCloud representatives,” he beams. “They have all offered fantastic insight and it has been a superb balance of business seminars and production workshops which will really help the attendees in understanding how to benefit from

opportunities in the digital age of electronic music. The turnout has been fantastic, the place has been rammed and it is a great platform for next year’s event.” The weekend fee of £140 (€168) was exceptional value and as each seminar or workshop would finish with a round of applause, I offer the same to all at Alchemea College and Sample Magic for making this happen – a truly inspiring weekend! Oh, and watch out for my

arrival on the electronic music scene…

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