You’ve been killing it in small clubs everywhere—but now it’s time to step it up and play for thousands (okay, maybe hundreds) of people who may not know who you are, or are just out for a party. Here’s what you need to know to prepare for your first festival set and win over a ton of new fans.
Marc Houle is not a DJ—in fact, he'd be the first to tell you that he's never really learned how to mix beyond fading one track out and another in—but that doesn't mean he can't rock a club. His live show, which he brought to MUTEK's stage a few weeks back in Montreal, consists of little more than Ableton Live, a vocoder, and TK, but his piece de resistance is a special prototype controller made by Livid for a Minus Records tour a few years back. He gave us a look at how it works, and told us about his new album, in today's video interview.
Much like the impetus for Native Instruments to create Maschine and for Ableton to develop Push, Zurich-based artist Ander (just Ander) also wants electronic music to get out from behind the laptop. To do so, the tinkerer and composer made Station, a grid-based, LED-and-knob-driven, multi-unit controller that he runs with Ableton Live and Max for Live for maximum improvisational possibilities.
Wearable bass augmentation. Tactile bass experience devices. There’s a whole lot of names out there for this relatively new technology, but what it boils down to is the ability to experience music playback with club-like bass pressure—but without a set of huge speakers. Two new companies are bringing this tech to market right now, and it’s an exciting development in the DJ, production, and home-listening worlds, so today we’re going to show you what it is, how it works, and why it’s useful for DJs and producers.
Montreal’s MUTEK Festival (which partnered with the Elektra festival for this year’s EM15 presentation) is nothing if not inspiring. Whether through its scores of experimental A/Visions performances, its workshops with cutting-edge music-gear and software manufacturers, its star-packed panels and lectures, or its late-night gigs from dance music’s most respected names, there is much to get jazzed about. On our trip there last week, we caught a slew of performances, and, as is always the case, some really rose to the top. Here’s what inspired us the most.
This past weekend, the DJ TechTools crew headed to Montreal for the 15th edition of the city's MUTEK Festival. As part of the event, we got to sit down with Richie Hawtin in the Ableton Lounge to chat with him about his creative process. Check out the video interview after the jump, and take a rare peek inside Hawtin's studio and live setups.
Producer/DJ Jake Stanczak has made a habit of changing things up over the years. Whether jumping coasts from New York to Los Angeles, migrating from Reason to Ableton Live as his main production tool, or producing across the bass-music gamut—from making drum & bass as Ewun to crafting more electro- and trap-infused tunes for Skrillex’s OWSLA label as Kill the Noise—Stanczak has all manner of tips and tricks for keeping things fresh. We tapped him for some pointers on how to boost your creativity and what you should really focus on in the studio.
Not only is UMEK (aka Uros Umek) one of Europe’s most prolific makers of techno and tech-house tracks—the Slovenian DJ/producer is also a machine when it comes to crafting sample packs for others to use in the studio. Loopmasters recently released UMEK’s newest sample collection, Loops From Behind the Iron Curtain—2.7 GB of loops, one-shots, and synth presets named after his renowned radio show—so we talked with him about his sampling philosophy and what it takes to build such a package.