Music is like math: It’s hard.
For the past several months— since even before I released Cognitive Dissonance —I have toiled to break through a wall between me and the world of EDM production. What started as inspiration tugging at the back of my brain has blossomed into an obsession; I don’t want to just make adequate music, I want to kill it. I have been so consumed by this project that I haven’t blogged or sent an email in two months.
Sorry about that, I missed you.
Back To The Beginning
Some of my fans and Officers have asked me about this new focus on EDM. After all, I just spent a decade rocking the geek stages across the US (and even once in Canada). Why change genres? Why go through all the trouble, potentially losing fans and momentum in the process?
To be honest, I needed a reinvention. At age 12 I’d already been a piano player for seven years, but my interest waned. What lit that spark up was the discovery of music tech— MIDI devices, synthesizers, sequencers, etc. I was a pre-teen nerd spending his time producing digital music when the other kids were earning merit badges.
I want to play in that sandbox again.
The truth about dance music is that it’s more science than art. Art can be messy. Rock and roll can be messy (see also: Hendrix, Zepplin, White). But EDM is so tightly-compressed and high-intensity there’s no wiggle room. It’s a precision instrument driven by technology, much like a Yamaha race bike.
Good EDM production is like a formula, an equation that must be solved. Certain parts must add up for it to really work. There are multiple ways to solve this equation, but they all have to add up the same: Energetic, inspiring, consistent in quality from earbuds to outdoor festival mains. It’s like a puzzle that re-configures itself every time you begin a new song. And it encourages you to create your own tools to solve it.
It’s a challenge that has inspired me for months now: I’m chasing down this equation and I will solve it.
I haven’t felt this inspired since I worked on Goodbye Planet Earth back in 2007. Once again I find myself locked in my Composition Lab watching weeks go by as I come ever-closer to something unique and beautiful. I’ve got lab assistants, thanks to my Officer’s Club and friends like Oddy with years of EDM production, DJ-ing, and front-of-house engineering under his belt.
When I come up for air again, I’ll have something wonderful to share. (Of course, you can always become part of the research team by joining the Officer’s Club, they get all these new tracks as prototypes!)