How did you record them?
Audio UX: We set out with our field recording gear, including several Zoom interfaces and Sennheiser shotgun microphones, to record the samples at the source. Additionally, we came equipped some percussion tools like sticks and brushes to begin drumming up our industrial rhythm section.
Initially, we had planned on primarily using this time to generate noise sweeps & pops to capture impulse responses that we would later use for creating several convolution reverb spaces ranging from unfurnished foyers to vacant sleeping quarters. Once we started sampling whistles and using them to craft the rudimentary pads on “Ruin”, we took that to the next step in working with iZotope Iris 2.
How were these samples used on Ruin? Any specific moments to point out that people should listen for?
Audio UX: All three of the tracks were built using the samples we recorded as much as possible. We agreed on that creative limitation from the start as a means of both honoring the spaces we were recording and making sure the music felt like it was from those dark and forgotten places. It was important to us that the samples and the spaces themselves informed the aesthetic direction of the EP. The most obvious place to hear the samples come to life is in the drums and percussion. For example in the first half of “End of Line,” there’s a percussion element that emulates a tambourine, but it’s really just us recording the sound of kicking an old bed frame with broken bed springs. Every timbre that made it onto the EP was approached just like the broken bed frame.
Besides the accompanying EP, what types of projects do you foresee (or could you foresee) using these samples on?
Audio UX: These samples have a very dark and rich sound profile that could work very well ranging anywhere from trailer risers to a film score itself, industrial music, as well as varying genres of electronic music. At the end of the day, art is about inspiration. Whether we’re inspired to load one of these patches into a session, or whether a patch itself inspires us to create an entirely new musical work, we have no doubt they will find their place. Either way, we’re really excited to have had the opportunity to have worked with such a unique software to create a thematic preset pack.
Preset names are usually pretty wild. From “Wrath of Light” to “Incinerator,” these are no different! How did you decide to name these presets? And what role do you think preset names play in why the user decides to use them?
Audio UX: Any artistic project we dive into needs to have depth in the concept. It’s rewarding for us to drive aesthetic meaning into our initiatives, and ultimately rewarding for the end user to have an enriched imaginative experience with our product.
These names were chosen carefully based on the initial, almost synesthetic, reaction to the sound of each patch with consideration for the story of Ruin. Maybe it’s because of our natural predilection towards film scoring, but every name references some kind of cyber-dystopian/post-apocalyptic/multidimensional storyline where, someplace in spacetime, the future has been ruined. Some names include “Cartesian Romance” based off La Jetée (1962), “Akira’s Choir” based off Akira (1988), “Babeldom Gypsy” based off Babeldom (2012) and Lost Steinway based off Lost Highway (1997).