Skip to main content

How It Was Made: Yann Tiersen - 11 5 18 2 5 18

Breton-based artist Yann Tiersen combines quality analog sounds, FM synthesis, with emotional piano samples to create his newest album 11 5 18 2 5 18.

Brittany-based artist Yann Tiersen is releasing his newest album 11 5 18 2 5 18, which released on 6/10 via Mute on CD and digital platforms with a vinyl version dropping on September 30. Following the release with fresh tour dates stretching across North America. 

Yann has released all tracks from the 9 track album. 16 15 21 12 12. 2 15 10 5 18 where treated piano samples bend and drift through hypnotizing pulsing electronics. 

While 11 5 18 2 5 18 begins with sparse textured electronics propelling the track forward as elements from the original start to gradually open out, and spiraling piano patterns give way to pulsating beats. The album can be ordered here.

The Man Himself

At the age of 4 Yann received classical piano training, then adding the violin to his repertoire at age 6. Receiving classical training from reputable academies in Rennes, Nantes, and Boulogne until about 13 when he decided to break his violin into pieces, purchase a guitar, and form a rock band.

Afterwards, Yann was on the hunt to curate his own sound, guided by his intuition and vision to create what he calls "musical anarchy."

 Yann Tiersen Uses The Octatrack

The process for his newest collection of tracks began while working on a live, non-piano on stage version of his album Kerber. Yann began to see a whole new concept for an album come to light. 

While sampling the original sounds Yann was inspired to create something new.

Using the Elektron Octatrack as the center piece for this album he began chopping samples, sequencing, and laying down the melodies. 

Analog Rytm
Octatrack 01
Digitone FM Octatrack and Digitone Keyboard

 More beat oriented aspects come in from another Elektron power house the Analog Rytm Drum Computer. 

With assists from the Queen of Pentacles drum module.

 A 7 voice analog drum/percussive synth module which takes circuits and ideas from the legendary Roland TR-909 drum machine, and the BLCK_NOIR module also created by

Scroll to Continue

Recommended Articles

Tuned to the sound of dark wave and techno.


Yann Tiersen's Secret To Organic Sound Design

More modular sounds are added by the French made, ribbon controller synth engine ContinuuMini made by Haken Audio. 

The Ondes Martenoti is used for a sine wave. Sent to a looper then to a Beads from Mutable Instruments module. Providing texture using live granular processing on the incoming signal.

ondes mortenot
Digitone FM Octatrack and Continuum

The Power Of Modular Synthesis 

The ContinuuMini and the Octatrack tag team duties controlling the Instruo Complex Oscillator. 

The Furthrrr Generator, created by, appears on the album as well. Which is controlled by the Elektron Digitone keyboard. 

Yann swears by the Digitone for its FM capabilities.

Digitone FM
Furthurrrr Generator

Yann expresses his love for 303s, a Roland baseline synth that has been around since the mid 80s. 

On this album Yann used a Baseline by Erica Synths to fulfill the normal 303 duties

Pictured below the Baseline in euro rack form.

Here is the desktop version.

Erica Synths Bassline Module

Erica Synths Bassline Module

If you're loving this organic analog sound expect the rest of the album to be an absolute treat for your ears.

Related Content