Monday, 2 February 2015

GL0WKiD chats with SIDESTALKER (Exclusive Interview on the Strictly Nuskool Blog)

These days i had some interesting chattin with the producer/DJ/Mastering Engineer/ Multi-Instrumentalist Composer/Remixer, Breyt Redvers aka Sidestalker discussing about his story so far, personal highlights, future plans and of course his latest class offering which came out over the last months of 2014. It's an Album titled 'Return of the Old-Skool' including Old Skool Hardcore, Breakbeat, House, Acid & Jungle vibes created using Nu Skool Techniques (as he's mentioning) and all tracks featured are totally mental and tuff to keep the oldskool spirit alive inside your souls!
Firstly i asked him to tell me few words about his rave days back then.
" I was originally part of the Rave scene in the early 90’s (1990 – 1993) and released Vinyl on Labello Blanco with the support of classic old-skool pioneers The Criminal Minds.
In those days for many of us, the studio gear was strictly hardware and my studio setup was pretty simple. Consisting of a Roland Juno 106 synth, Alesis MMT-8 sequencer, Akai X7000 sampler, Roland R8 drum machine, Kawai K4 synth, Art MultiVerb, KEF Monitors, Casio DA-7 DAT recorder and a dodgy mixing desk.
My Akai X7000 weighed a ton and even with an expansion circuit board could only hold 16 samples of less than 1 second each recorded in 12 bit. So even 1 bar of a breakbeat had to be split into 2-4 samples. With each of those samples having to be recorded separately and then edited together afterwards to re-create the breakbeat pattern! Those were the days! "

The Criminal Minds presents AUTONOMY - Labello Blanco - 1993 [VINYL]

Breyt was only 15 when he released a vinyl under the alias 'Autonomy' and this story seems quite interesting for a young producer. Gotta describe him as a .... "proud-ucer" better!
But what's the story behind this release?
" So, in the early '90's a mate of mine was in a local record store called Treehouse Records in Milton Keynes where we used to get loads of our Old-Skool vinyl. He decided to hand my demo over to the guys at the counter. The Criminal Minds used to hang out there - although we had no idea of this at the time. Later that week I got a phone call.. It was DJ Spatts from The Criminal Minds calling to see if I was real. Apparently they had been chatting with The Prodigy about how all the demos they got handed were crap and it became a bit of a joke. They thought that my demo may have been Liam playing a trick on them! So Spatts seemed pleasantly surprised that he was actually talking to a 15 year old kid! Everything led on from there. "

The Criminal Minds presents AUTONOMY - Labello Blanco - 1993

Like most producers out there, Breyt has been also caught up with the Hip Hop scene before falling in love with Breakbeat Hardcore. "Musically I listened to a heavy diet of classic UK Hip-Hop such as Hijack, Gunshot and The Criminal Minds so the flow of Breakbeat Hardcore was completely natural.
And then it was all about the rave scene, when buzzing with excitement and possibility at that time. ''Those days were simply amazing, I don’t think that anyone who was there and experienced it first-hand will ever forget it. However, by the time ’94 came about the old style hardcore breakbeat scene was slowly dying and being replaced with Happy Hardcore and Drum’n’bass etc. The music was also getting faster and more commercial.
Once upon a time the commercial radio stations would not play our music. All media was negative and we were seen as anarchists. But that was changing and Pop music had taken elements of our style and was commercialising our sound.
At raves none of the musicians/producers were given much credit. DJ’s were superstars and we were the forgotten artists. "

Crazy youth meets punk and the result is like anarchy.." I was still a teenager at the time and was looking for attention! On top of this I had started listening to punk music. So the next thing I knew I sold ALL my equipment – bought a guitar and amp, moved to a new town and started a punk band while working in a local recording studio.
Teenage anarchy at a commercialising scene I guess! – I had no idea how to play a guitar or sing so things were very experimental and noisy for quite a while! I was just determined not to “Sell out”."

From punk moving again to electronic music with some influences from Japanese music and the story goes far away till 2014.. " For many years I lived and worked with all the local hard rock, metal and punk bands. Recording them and doing the sound at live events.

Around 2000 I started making electronic music again. I knew all the equipment from my work as a studio producer/engineer and it was easy for me to get back in the swing. At this time I was (and still am) heavily influenced by Japanese music and went down a very experimental route making Breakcore and Noise. Nobody really understood what I was doing, it was pretty extreme and never got much recognition.

Somehow I eventually found myself moving into producing Pop artists on the side and took a back seat as freelance producer and studio musician for many years. 
I was still creating my own electronic music during this time but never put anything into the public domain. "

The year 2014 was one of his personal essentials as found the perfect time to get inspired on a place like Costa Rica. This is the time when he returned to the Old Skool roots and thats why later on he named his personal album like this.
" At the start of 2014 I spent some time in Costa Rica – the free space and relaxed atmosphere made me realise how much I loved the freedom and naivety of the early Breakbeat Hardcore days and one day I found myself in the middle of the ocean surrounded by nothing but blue sea and sky, white sand, palm trees and mountains (no humans!) – With this clarity I made the decision that when I returned home the Old-Skool Hardcore onslaught would begin again!

I needed to return to that place of musical purity!

I had no idea there was any kind of Nu-Skool scene and did not know if anyone would be interested in the slightest! But I didn’t care.. After all.. It was and is - all about the music and the love of the Old-Skool.
To find out there was actually a scene for this music and still so much passion was amazing!"

And here comes his musical expression titled 'Return of the Old-Skool'  featuring 9 tracks of different genres, all cooked with 1 reason to remain to the...real feeling. The feeling that SIDESTALKER has been raised and lived in it.
" The album ‘Return of the Old-Skool’ is a collection of the best tracks I put together during 2014 as I re-discovered my love for Breakbeat and Rave.

I am a vampire... (apparently!).. All the tunes on Return to the Old-Skool were written after midnight.. When the rest of the world is sleeping. I have now fallen into a sleeping pattern of going to bed at 7 in the morning and waking up after midday! I have no formula - I could start with a beat or a synth or a sample that I grabbed from some classic Sci-Fi or Horror movie. But once I begin - I just keep going, I never get stuck... The only thing that stops me in my tracks is the need for food or sleep (which I sometimes forget!).

When I started the project I tried to stick to the Old-Skool formula by limiting all the equipment and sounds I would use. But I soon got bored of that. I spent the past 10 years or so messing around with Breakcore and Glitch so now you will find a lot of those techniques appearing in the songs as well. It is just fun for me to find new ways to mangle and destroy tunes without actually losing any of the original rave flavour. It is all about experimenting.

You can download this Album for free or even donate if you want to show some real support for this big work, by clicking here
9 great quality tunes as i've already said, mentioned, shouted, blogged and given several plays via my radio show (Generation X)! Wishing for more from SIDESTALKER as he seems same thirsty as nu-rave masses are, so only time will tell...! Feedback & support is already kind and positive for these tracks, and that makes him happy to carry on. We are here to follow him and every oldskool alive warrior of course!

This period he's also producing tracks to a female singer called Anieshi Pearl. "She is awesome... is a very different style of music but I spend a lot of time on the Anieshi Pearl project" He's been doing also some remixes (UK hiphop style aswell) with his latest one a rework on '32 Troop - Mayday' (out now on Britcore Rawmance records in white limited edition vinyl or standard black)

SIDESTALKER's studio 'The Doll House'

My setup these days is pretty simple. I use Ableton Live on both PC and Mac and most effects are Ableton stock and Max4Live. A lot of people always ask me what kit I use so here is a basic run down.

My Hardware List Includes:
Custom PC
MacBook Pro
Push controller
M-Audio Trigger Finger
Alesis Vortex Wireless Keytar
Akai MPK mini
Numark Mixtrack Pro II
Novation K-Station
Focusrite Saffire 6 USB (PC)
Apogee Duet (Mac)
Neumann TL102
Yamaha NS10m Studio Monitors
Yamaha AX10 PA Speakers
Ibanez RGD320Z
Fender Sonoran

DAW Software includes:

Ableton Live

Sound Forge

Plugins From:

D16 Group
Native Instruments
Lennar Digital

Also including a huge selection of Original Old-Skool sample CD’s from the late ‘80’s and early ‘90’s which have been personally ripped and individually edited by myself! (Took many months!!)
And not forgetting the massive collection of classic Sci-Fi and Horror movies! My favourite sample elements and a huge obsession of mine.
If you want any specific details on any sounds, samples or tricks – please get in contact via facebook - I am always more than happy to chat with fellow musicians and share techniques / knowledge etc.

There is so much more to come during 2015.. So many plans!

Gonna be kicking it up a notch and including a huge dose of my Punk background.

It’s gonna get heavy!!

Stay Tuned!


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