Saturday, December 20, 2008



I dream a lot.

I mean, I like sleeping. It is a double life for me as I dream so much. Sometimes I mix dreams and reality in a third form, something creative. And that is exactly what happened with this track. I had a strange dream (as usual) about a jazz band playing in the kitchen of a restaurant…only they were playing with the crockery rather than instruments…and the audience was also playing in this same way. It is hard to say how it was exactly, but it was definitely fun and weird.

I don't know why, but I am fascinated by the backdoors of restaurants, which are often left open. In Paris, the restaurant and Brasserie kitchens are like Babylon: black guys, Indians, Eastern European guys, whatever. It's a full blend of nationalities and cultures. I have always wondered how is life in there. "Back Boutique" was born from this idea.

I wanted to have fun making a housey-dance-music track suggestive of this melting pot. Even if most of the time, the audience and dancefloor don't care about the suggestive part of a track (yes, you know, club music, it's for clubbing!), it's always good to work on that suggestive part within the creative process, because it regulates the originality and the identity of it.

I started to collect and record sounds of crockery and kitchen tools, which was fun to do. I also started to work with my Daw (Ableton) and my usual method, which I call, "The Spider". To explain: I open a new project on Ableton, create few blank columns, and start working on a core. Generally I set up this core in the middle of my project and not from the top-left corner. Then I add clips around. I don't follow the traditional Ableton process which consists of building the project set from the top to the bottom, and from left to right.

I reach a mess pretty quickly, in a sense that the project is full of different arrangements and reacts in its own logical way. For me it's comparable to the process of painting or sculpture. My method was similar while I was a student in art school. At this point I have a project which includes maybe 50 different types of arrangements, recordings (real instruments, loops of samples, samples played with a keyboard), variations, bridges, coda, a variety of sound design, transformations or whatever. I can choose the right direction/color of the track. It's a painful moment because I have to reject half or more of the ideas I have generated for the project. Most of the time I keep more than I really need!

Then it's time to reorganize the project (still in the session view) from top left corner to the bottom, with the assorted arrangements and sequenced right. Then I record what I'm playing from the session view to the arrangement view (for those who don't know Ableton live, the sequencer is divided in both view, session view, for jam and live act with the clips, and arrangement view, more timeline sequencer oriented), and create something like a 15 or sometimes 20 minutes track/impro. Then, I arrange that in a formatted club track time, between 5 to 8 minutes. Sometimes I work on both versions. Then I equalize and mix the track.

I made a bonus version of this track (digital only), which is less playful, more of a dj tool, and it's a good complement to the original version.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I dream a lot too
And A Merry Xmas to you


3:30 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

yo sweet concept le K !

9:17 AM  
Blogger John R. said...

Very creative of you. Like it's not even possible but you did it by yourself. Good song by the way.

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10:22 PM  
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