We have another How It Was Made feature coming at you. This week Crimson Child shows us what it took to create this musical masterpiece. The Vancouver-based producer recently releases a cinematic EP called Eleventh Hour on Space Yacht Records. This LP is dark, hard, contemporary, and everything you would want in an LP.
One of my favorite tracks on the LP is "Incarnare." This style has gotten bigger over the years with producers like Rezz. It's something you would see straight out of a movie. The slow tempo, in the beginning, the progression of the track, and the sounds used are what caught my attention with this one. Crimson Child is someone to watch out for as festivals are starting to open back up over the summer.
Let's take a look into his studio now...
I am often asked where I find my sounds, and although much of the album is live recorded, there is also quite a bit of Spitfire LABS in there, partly to make the listener question if what they’re listening to is really being played, or just programmed intelligently. In "Incarnare," I use several piano patches from LABS interlaced with live recordings to achieve this effect.
One of the many tools I use for such mangling is the heavy amp in Ableton. I use this on the repeated “Incarnare” vocal over the heavy bass to distort and add more edge to the sound. Be warned, this effect is intense and gets really loud and piercing quickly, important to place an eq both before and after to clean it up after use.
Much of the album’s various synth parts were recorded on my Prophet-6, which I purchased in search of that classic warm analog vibe. I can't imagine making music without it now, as it has become such an integral element of my sound. In fact, after the organ at the start of "Incarnare," the Prophet is the very next sound you hear, as it filters up leading to the massive distorted bass that fills the spectrum and your ears.
4. Ozone 9
The last step for me in every track is mastering, which I did myself for the Eleventh Hour LP. Ozone 9 is my main tool for this process. The built in EQ, Imager, Excited, Multiband Dynamics,
That bass being made by none other than Xfer’s Serum, my go-to plugin for quickly sketching sounds, to be post-processed further within Ableton. I tend to start a lot of sounds in serum just to get the core tone and shape before mangling it with stock fx and other plugins outside this interface.
When it comes to vocal processing, I rely heavily on the fabfilter suite to get me the polish I'm chasing. Pro-Q 3, Pro-C 2 and Pro R are among my most used, the former of which I place on every single channel by default to help shape the sound and clean my mix up towards the later stages.