10 SHORT QUESTIONS WITH KSHMR
Mysterious producer KSHMR (as in Kashmir) exploded onto the scene with his first release, “Megalodon." Orchestral, hard-hitting, extravagant — his tracks come straight out of a music festival directed by Steven Spielberg. Since then, his Beatport releases “Burn,” “Secrets” and “Karate” have all peaked at #1 overall and quickly garnered him a rapidly growing fan base. KSHMR is painting a world for his audience; each production is a brushstroke and, while he’s only just begun, his vision is clearly one of epic proportions.
1. What is the best part about being a producer?
- The best part about being a producer is knowing that if you keep working, eventually something special will present itself. It can also be the hardest part, waiting for that moment.
2. Is talent, hard work, or the connections you make the most important factor for being successful?
- Knowing what you stand for is the most important factor. Create from the heart and you will be the hardest worker, speak from the heart and you will make all the connections you need. That's the best advice I can give.
3. When do you usually make music?- When I got the time I’m always behind my computer making music. So this could be at night, during the day at home or on the road.
- Almost always, shortly after I wake up and until I go to bed.
4. What is your favorite synthesizer? Which one do you use most in your productions?
- Nexus is what I use the most. Then Sylenth1 and Spire.
5. Do you work on mastering/mixing by yourself? Favorite Compressor/ Limiter/Maximizer ?
- I almost always handle mixing. Favorite compressors are Pro-C and RComp. Favorite limiter is Invisible Limiter. I use multiband compression a lot, perhaps too much.
For this I use the stock Ableton multiband compressor.
6.How do your tracks sound so fat?
The best to make things sound full, in my opinion, is to keep adding synths and figure out which ones are best filling each area of the spectrum.
- Very high: should be white noise, or a synth that has white noise like a super saw
- Upper middle: main synth
- Middle: main synth and other synths that support the main synth and give it body
- Lower middle: some kind of mid bass supporting the main synth (or in the case of melodic progressive house tracks, supporting the chords) without getting in the way of the sub
- Low: this area belongs to the kick and the sub, make sure you eq the lows out of all of the synths I listed above so that they do not interfere with this area. The relationship between your kick and sub depends greatly on your sidechaining so learn this technique well
- The kick should have a nice attack on the top end as well as the low. It may help to add a clap (with the lows and mids cut out and a fair amount of reverb) on top of every kick
- Putting groups of the synths on a bus (e.g. main synths, bass synths, etc), or a simply grouping them as with ableton,
and then compressing and eq'ing that group helps as well
- There are plug ins such as OTT and FabFilter's Pro G which can help to make synths sound bigger using upward compression.
7. Do you have any advice for young producers?
- My best advice for young producers is to imagine the following scenario. You are in a studio with the biggest producers and playing each other music. Except, every time they play a song it comes out of the big studio speakers and every time you play a song it has to be played out your laptop. Knowing this, what could you play that would still stand out? You will never stand out trying to do Ummet's style better than Ummet, or Calvin's style better than Calvin; you would be playing the same songs, on a platform infinitely smaller than theirs. You have to play something that none of them would have done: unique enough to be noticed through tinny laptop speakers amidst the huge studio ones. The speakers are, of course, a metaphor for the humble platform any new artist starts out with.
8. You are becoming known for trying to help younger producers. Why are you doing it? Did someone help you in the past when you were a beginner?
- I think helping people gives you a deeper kind of happiness that can't be achieved if you're only concerned with your own accomplishments. Based on experience, my career will probably have its highs and lows. If success were the only thing giving me a sense of purpose, I would be really crushed if, say, my songs didn't perform well on Beatport and, ultimately, I don't think I'd be very happy.
9. How did you discover Vandalism?
- Searching for Sylenth1 banks.
10. What makes you choose Vandalism over other competitors?