If you are into house music and live in the LA area, chances are you've more than familiar with the Desert Hearts crew and their parties. Over the past few years, they have become one of the leading parties and brands in not just California, but the US as a whole. But, beyond their wild psychedelic, their label is equally as impressive, always showcasing top artists and rising underground talent that you see on their lineups. The latest release features family member and prominent house DJs Lubelski and Musashi. The Pressure EP consists of tracks "Pressure" and "Word is Bond," with the latter featuring a remix from Audiojack. House music can often seem simple, but as you'll see below, a lot of time and attention to detail went into the release. In this edition of How It Was Made, we asked Lubelski to break down the process of creation.
Words and photos by Lubelski
PRESSURE (ORIGINAL MIX)
For "Pressure," Musashi and I wanted to create something that emulated the meaning of the vocals—something that glides and breaths like the pressure of sound, which is how we came to the idea of toying with the glide and the release of the lead synth.
It was a really simple sequence, just 2 notes galloping up and down on my Dave Smith OB6. All done in one take.
For the massive phased chords towards the end of the track, we used my Prophet6. A couple of sawtooth waves with a perfect 5th harmonic and some of the built-in phaser effect, and viola.
WORD IS BOND (ORIGINAL MIX)
"Word Is Bond" was even simpler to make than "Pressure" since it was all the synths were done on my Modular Rack.
The main modules used for this were my Intellijel Metropolis and Intellijel Atlantis and running it through my Make Noise QPAS Filter.
Metropolis was used to sequence both the bass line and the lead. It’s a 303-styled sequencer and incredibly intuitive.
I ran the Metropolis into my Atlantis module and recorded maybe 30 minutes of material—going crazy one the ADSR cycle, frequency modulation, wavetables, and octave knob. After the little jam session, I chopped up the good bits and arranged the track.
I love this filter, it has the standard Low Pass, Band Pass, and High Pass outputs but also what Make Noise calls a Smile Pass. I’m guessing its something between a Comb Filter and a Band Pass, but it’s able to get tones as I’ve never heard before. Using it on "Word Is Bond," gave our lead just that little bit extra squelch and quirk.
For a bunch of the tension effects, I used my Grayscale Supercell module, which is basically a real-time granulator. By using what’s called “Time Lag Accumulation” I was able to create some really interesting builds and wind-sounding effects to create tension while still using the Atlantis as the voice.
VERMONA DRM1 MkIII
A lot of the weird blippy and tinny drum sounds in this one were made from my Vermona DRM1 Mkiii. An all-analog beast of a drum machine. Very unlike any other drum machine on the market in my opinion and somewhat temperamental when it comes to sequencing it. However, I’ve always loved being able to have an instrument that can talk back, it becomes more of a conversation with the synth rather than you just telling it what to do.