Moscow-based pair Volen Sentir is known the world over for their unique ethnic-house sounds on labels like All Day I Dream and Lost & Found. In their short history, the duo has released a number of vinyl EPs and singles, made their way into official compilations from Tomorrowland, Cafe Del Mar, and Buddha-Bar, as well as having played all over the world. Seeing as the pair won best-selling progressive house artists on Beatport for the second year in a row, we were interested in the tools they use to create sure dynamic work, and as such invited them for the latest installment of My Toolbox.
Words and photos by Volen Sentir
In music art, it's very important to feel vibrations of different frequencies very clearly. It gives you a global attitude to the whole audio mix. A strong-sounding mix is one of the most important things for us. We use different kinds of sound monitoring such as Audeze LCD2 Headphones, Beyerdynamic DT 990 PRO, Sennheiser HD650, ADAM A7X, Yamaha HS80m, and even KRK RP6.
1. DAW: Ableton Live
After 20 years of experience in music, we are here in Ableton Live. Before that, there were Trackers, Reason, Cubase & Nuendo, and more.
This is by far the most comfortable and amazing DAW to work with regarding audio, sampling, and editing and also to work with midi channels and plugins in Ableton. Also to perform live while using Live is pure happiness.
Synth: Virus TI Desktop
We have been using this for about 9 years and it still feels new with its great waveforms and wide sound. It is very useful with DAW and during the arrangement process. And yes of course in performing live!
Native Instruments is the mother of all! We use it in almost every tune that we have made. For example, in our recent JINX release, we’ve used NI Reaktor’s Monark for the bassline. The fattest and most beastly bass sounds, so Moogish! NI Kontakt we’ve used for string parts there. By the way, the Tal-Bassline has also been a favorite of ours for decades.
Control: Akai APC 40 + Akai Midimix
Ableton live and APC are old good friends. It's comfortable to feel all live actions through those button clips.
We’re using it in our live shows at the moment. Akai midimix is perfect for detailed control of every channel that you put in the spotlight.