Boston‘s new, mutlifaceted, multilayered, spectrasonic (if that’s a word) release on Symmetry is a breath of fresh air. Maybe it’s simply mainlined from impending Spring, but either way there’s a sense that the Welsh producer knows no creative boundaries. Time to talk about ‘Catch Your Breath’ and ‘For Grace’ as well as some Symmetry-related banter…
Boston, hi: how is it with you, and specifically where you live?
Safe! Things are real good, creativity is flowing and projects are getting finished. It’s great to get out of the city and into the Welsh countryside to breath some real air!
What strikes me about your music is, well, two things. One: it’s really ‘musical’ and two, that you have have a real, discernable awareness of a large variety of sounds when it comes to arranging your music.
I love to experiment using a lot of different techniques on a range of instruments. Using real instruments such as acoustic guitar, Rhodes piano and mandolin give me a lot more options and flexibility as opposed to using virtual instruments.
I try to engineer the sounds as best I can when recording and processing them to get them to sit nicely together.
Utilizing the stereo field to it’s fullest potential really interests me, getting the finer top elements such as atmospherics and musical aspects to sit way out in the stereo field sounds very pleasing to me.
Can you tell us about the wicked ‘Catch Your Breath’? It’s a perfect example of the above. Huge palette of sounds.
This was a project I dug out from about two years ago. I really liked the lead sounds and the general vibe, which provided me with a base to write new drums, bass, music and atmospheric sounds. I started by recording all of the musical parts into the project, which gave me loads of freedom and inspired the rest of the track.
All of the other sounds came from various film music sample packs and VST’s such as ‘Omnisphere’.
I used about 40 individual side-chain sends on this tune, which gives it that pump in the mix: Catch your Breath’ seemed like a really cool name for it in respect of that.
Now to ‘For Grace’: love the bass on this, how it sits… do you play bass yourself?
I used a double bass virtual instrument for this one… I would love to record a double bass but session players are scarce and expensive!
Grace is my big sis. She moved to Seville about seven months ago on her own, without being able to speak a word of Spanish. Regardless, she’s made a life for herself out there and is the happiest she has ever been. This really inspired me, which inevitably lead to making a piece of music.
Love the very ‘live’ beats on this. They’re discrete, ‘less is more’ as they say.
I’ve been using Addictive Drums for a while now: the level of detail they’ve put into their latest software is ridiculous and it allows me to create the feel of a live drummer. All of my breaks are a mix up of AD and real drum break recordings.
And I could imagine this totally done live… would you ever consider? With real instruments?
That’s something I’ve considered doing as a project for my masters degree. I’ve seen a few live D&B acts but it definitely needs to be done more. It gives a performance that human touch that a standard DJ set lacks. If any musicians out there want to get involved hit me up!
How is it to work with Symmetry? Got to be kindred spirits!
I’ve respected the work of Break and Kyo massively for years now. Being associated with them is such a privilege because they are both so skilled and dedicated to what they do best. Seeing how Charlie produces first hand really puts emphasis on the huge amount of work that goes into his tracks.
Who are other people that inspire you on a daily basis in music, not just D&B?
And if you could be part of any studio session for an album being made, which one?
It would have to be Stevie Ray Vaughan and his band during the recording of the Texas Flood album. His music has a wicked blend of Blues soul coupled with unbelievable musicianship. The recordings from that album are so well produced – I’d love to know what gear and techniques they used. SRV is just one of the many artists I wish were still alive and creating amazing music.
Massive thanks to everyone who’s been supporting and sharing my music, it’s really appreciated.
Big Love to all the Cardiff family!