1 - Can you tell us a Tell us little about your background? Where did you guys grow up, and where are you based now? Who are your roommates?
we all grew up on the south coast of the uk, around the Bournemouth area , we still live here , back a few years ago we lived in North London but moved back to Bournemouth and the beach as its a pretty dope place to live !
Not long after we formed aquasky we actually shared many a house together with the studio and office all in one place but nowadays we all live in our own houses ! the days of us sharing a house are over now 17 years on !
2 - What is the concept behind your name?
It was one we had to come up with pretty quick as we had just signed a record deal with Moving Shadow to put out the first tracks we made out back in 1995 , we didn't have a name, and the artwork was being done the next morning so we had to come up with something pretty sharpish. The basic idea was at the time we were and (still are) into the idea that there should be the choice as a producer to make music with no bounds restraining you , so Aquasky comes from the idea of a big blank pallet bit like an artists canvas that you can do what you like on …blue sky, sea …massive open blank spaces etc.
3 - How did you get started producing music?
All 3 of us have different backgrounds , myself (kieron) came from a bit of a musical background playing in bands when i was younger and then got into djing in the early 90s , Brent was a huge record collector and was very much into many different styles of music from this , whilst Dave was very much into electronic and pop music and had got into dance music from the technological/ electronic side of things.
So the 3 of us having worked on a few things separately got together and made 2 tunes , these were the 2 tracks that were signed up to Moving Shadow in 1995 so it was pretty quick for us , the first 2 tunes we made were picked up by one of the most respected drum and bass labels
4 - What do you think stands out the most about your sound?
Hard for us to answer that one i think, i guess we like to mix the musical elements with some big heavy bass and beats !
5 - When did you first feel that you had finally discovered your own signature sound as a group?
I think we always worked with a particular sound from the way we do things, thats just what happens with a group theres a collective idea of what sounds good. Think the thing is to make it yours but still be able to progress and evolve what you do , so i guess for us its always changing , i don think you ever can say thats "your sound " otherwise you have stopped progressing , think the main thing is with us is theres a particular method to our production which i guess makes stuff sound how it does but again that always evolves.
6 - Do you know what kind of track you want to write before you sit down to make it, or are you just trying things out until the music gels?
yeah usually we have an idea b4 we start of what the end point will be , although often it still can go off on a different tip , think you cant push a square peg into a round hole if a tune starts to go a particular way often its not wise to push it and try to make it into something its not ,but if we have a particular type of tune to record we will make sure we pick them kinda sounds and parts while were working on it so we get the end result. Theres still an element of randomness tho as you may set out to do one thing and come up with a wicked idea for another track by accident , in that case we would save that idea and work on it later.
7 - What inspires you when you go into the studio?
Many things its always exciting going in fresh on a new tune or project.
8 - When you do sample, how do you approach it? Where do you source your samples from?
well Brent has a huge record collection of weird and wonderful stuff so thats always a good place ,
also we have a huge collection of 17 plus years worth of sounds, samples beats funny noises and more on our computers so there is a massive library of stuff we have accumulated over the years, so sometime we just preview stuff in the track as we work on it or maybe we just have a great loop to start from and the idea of the track will be based all around that loop.
9 - Do you currently have a favorite piece of gear or software?
cubase 6.5 ! they really came good with the new version , we been using it since day one and its been thru ups and downs of problematic versions but 6.5 is on fire, all the new stuff they added rocks and its pretty stable (touch wood)
10 - How and where do you record?
In our studio , we just moved to a new place and build a great new studio room , it sounds really good as we spent a lot of time sorting out the acoustics of the room , which is something we never really did b4 , we kinda half did it but this time its been a proper job and it deffo works i would recommend it to any producers who didn't do it yet
11 - When you’re not listening to electronic music, what do you listen to?
all kinda stuff , pretty into metal but also everything else. All 3 of us have a really mixed bag of music, I would say theres pretty much nothing were not into, different musics really interesting especially if you’re a producer.
12 - If a wrecking ball was headed for your house, which *one* record would you rescue before it hit?
My signed copy of the Mark Murphy ‘Sings’ LP containing the amazing track ‘Red Clay’
13 - When you perform, what’s your preferred setup and how would you describe your sets? Are they different than your sounds as a producer?
Myself and Dave use a Vestax vci 300 with Serato itch , brent uses full Serato with a Rane mixer. were talking to Vestax at the mo about upgrading to the new Vestax vci380 as they look dope so will be rocking them real soon. The whole Serato thing has really made djing loads of fun again , especially with the Vestax its so cool to have so much control over what your doing live and be able to re-edit tunes on the fly to keep the floor totally rocking , not like back with records where you had to wait for the breakdowns and mixing points etc or had to make special edits of stuff and cut dubplates of them , now theres much more creativity for the dj , i know a lot of people see laptops and controllers as a "cheat " for bad djs , yeah that maybe true of some shit djs but for any of the creative ones it just gives you the tools to re work music to fit how you mix for the benefit of the people watching you, obviously as a record lable we lament the slow demise of vinyl but I think things have to move on or we would all still be amoebas.
But yeah think we all play a pretty mixed bag , as Aquasky we may flip from 140 breaks to electro to dub step to drum and bass and drum step and then drop in some 110 also ! so its pretty varied the uniting factor for us i think is that we like to have music thats pretty full on in the bass and energy department.
14 - What records are obliterating your dancefloors at the moment?
the remix the dam bell doors did for us recently of our track "raise the devil "is sooooooo big , it ripped the place apart for me!
But theres lots of great stuff , im loving Delta heavy at the mo theres smashing it ,
Also the new shades of rhythm tune meeting point is wicked , ahh theres so much decent stuff out there its mental !
15 - Does being a veteran artist affect the way you make music at all?
God knows ! i think were open minded and really have no preconceptions about what you should or should not do to make tunes/ dj / etc
as i think we have learnt over the years its all about being open to new ideas.
i guess we have a way of doing things but were always learning new tricks , thats the fun of production theres always something new or exciting happening , and you have to grasp it rather than get scared of change , the musical technology is always a source of fascination and excitement for me .
16 - If you weren’t musicians, what would you be doing with your life?
dunno dustmen maybe ?
17 - What is one thing most people don’t know about you?
were actually part time dustmen
18 - A last word…
bring the ruckus !