View Single Post
Old 5th July 2018
Hey Reptil
Thanks for these monster questions, actually something rather important to think about. Let’s get down to biz..

Originally Posted by Reptil View Post
Hi Klas, really awesome that you're here.

I have two questions really, but these overlap sort-of, so I'm asking them in one thread.
Turns out it's a bit long, I use many words hope you don't mind!

First question: Going through your bio, you started out with making music to be played in clubs, for people to dance to. And now you mix and master a lot of dance music.
What are the important elements in a track that make it suitable for that? How does it need to sound? How do you build up the arrangement, what to look for, to create tension? For example: Someone told me once; "it's the hi-hats that people dance on" (that trigger people to release energy dancing). So what about those transients?
I actually started to make music which was not meant to be played in a club. It was dance music and electronic yes, but as I was so young and never visited a real club I only made music for imaginary spaces and imaginary dancing people. So I did not care so much about what could work on a dancefloor, it was more the emotional sice of things which interested me.

After eventually some years as a touring dj, you know the mechanism of what makes people move. But every now and then you learn from fresh producers a trick or two

About the elements what makes people dance - I think it’s always been the kick drum combined with a bass. I think the low end energy of a track is more important than the percussion, but it’s music so everyone is entitled to their own taste. From a djs perspective, the kick just brings the right energy to the floor.

Originally Posted by Reptil View Post
What makes it work in the genres you've produce(d)? Which ones are dancefloor monsters and why? Is it different for techno than house music? Or breaks?
Recently I’ve been really open to all kind of dance music, earlier I was focussed on one style. People tend to know me more from the housier side of things, but I started actually with breakbeats and early jungle after the first wave of Detroit techno landed in Scandinavia. So I don’t really see a difference in all these genre talk and luckily also the dancefloors seems to be more open to different sounds nowadays.

Originally Posted by Reptil View Post
As you're also a DJ you use some tracks to build it up, some to cool it down, or suspend it. Can you give some examples of your music or music you've worked on? Or, in other words, please some insight on your experiences as DJ how to change the energy on the dancefloor?
Here are a few examples of things I recently played and how they work.

This is a classic piece of NEW music, it instantly just went to the ‘all-time classic’ box when I heard it. Emotinium a perfect piece of emotional deep house meets acid house meets breaks and what not. I drop this usually towards the end of my set as it brings out nicely a different vibe after some kick heavy club music. Unfortunately the WAV sold in online stores is super loudly mastered and has absolutely no dynamics. Need to get the vinyl and rip / remaster it.

This one is from the last Anja Schneider album which I mixed and it features Stereo MCs on vocals. It was produced by my studio partner Jan-Eric Scholz and is one of my favorite Anja tracks ever. The beat is quite reduced which makes this a perfect track to get from warm up mood to a bit more moving dancefloor. I think in the age of festivals and 1 hour dj slots, we tend to forget a dj used to play 6-8 hours a night, alone. So I always think about mood-changes on the dancefloor inbetween my 2-3 hours slots.

This one is a remix from Jonathan Kaspar for the ever lovely Chloe from Paris on her Lumiere Noire Records. This has a very nice soft low end which just works perfectly with the percussion and vocals. This you can play anytime and it rocks a floor.

Originally Posted by Reptil View Post
Second question is related. It's a topic of interest on the forum; what are the differences between nineties productions and modern 2018 ones? I'd like to ask you about the period 2000-2005 as well, because I feel that had a different vibe. Or maybe you see it differently? It's a wide range of experiences obviously, but maybe you can share some thoughts, about the differences in overall vibe, the technical differences in recording, production, etc.

Thank you!
There is of course a huge difference in production technology in the early nineties music compared to todays sound. The period you are referring to is quite interesting as in the early 2000’s the DAW’s kind of grew from being pure midi sequencers to full on studio software with audio tracks and plug-ins. The quality of the plug-ins was of course unbearable, but it was for most of us a first time we had the opportunity to use more than one reverb in a production

In the 90s you had your hardware effects and could hardly afford more than a delay pedal and maybe an Alesis reverb. So in the early 2000s when I used to work with Cubase I had 4 channels of audio which was a totally new way of thinking about sampling and treating audio. Before we had to cut things up in samplers and it was tedious and time consuming.

From the mixing point of view I think lots of people started to mix In The Box during this time. This lead to a whole new level of preciseness or rather coldness in the production and mixing.