Regular Richy Ahmed collaborator Michael Jansons goes solo on his new release for Four Thirty Two. He shows us around his London studio.
Jansons – My Studio
This is my studio. It’s small enough to easily get around all my gear, and big enough to have a jam with fellow artists. I have positioned all of my most used bits of kit at arm’s reach, for fast tweaking. My vinyl shelves are filled with all sorts of music that I’ve collected over the years and I have a turntable at the ready for sampling.
My main DAW is Logic Pro X. My main processing plugins are Soundtoys, Fab Filter, Waves and Slate Digital; and my most important plugin is Fab Filter Pro Q 2. I use Soft Synths along with my hardware – my favourites are Spectrasonics Omnisphere, Arturia V Collection and Native Instruments Komplete. I’m really getting into Xfer Serum as well, it’s unique sounding.
DJ Room/Vocal Booth
My DJ room consists of a setup of Pioneer CDJ 2000 Nexus, DJM 450 and Technics 1210s (one of my very first purchases). This is a great practice area and it is also wired up to the main studio, so I can record a mix directly into Logic. This section also doubles up as a vocal booth – it’s sound tight, with mics for recording. There’s also a beer fridge in the corner for when I have a mix session with friends.
The heart of the studio is surrounded by my most important gear, which is all connected up to the Mac Pro. At the workstation, pretty much all my tracks start with writing drum grooves with Native Instruments Maschine. I run my key bits of gear – such as the Moog, Prophet-6 and Korg Mono/Poly – into the Allen & Heath desk. I run the signal of the TR-808 and TR-909 really hot, to achieve that phat overdriven sound. My main controller keyboard is Native Instruments’ Komplete Kontrol, alongside the software (it’s a really fast way to find the type of sound you are after due to its clever browser).
The three synth powerhouses of my productions.
I just love everything about the Sequential Prophet-6! Rich, warm, lovely to program. I love it for arps, pads and phat chord stabs. It’s used for the lead sounds in ‘Mode’.
The Moog Voyager – simply phat, dirty and chunky. I find it great for huge mono leads. All of the synth sounds in ‘Ensemble’ (from my Killer Key EP) come from the Moog Voyager.
The SH-101 must count for 90% of basslines in my tracks. For example, it’s the main bassline myself and Richy Ahmed used on our remix of ‘Phase’ by Senazla.
These pieces don’t really need much introduction!
I have the 707, 808 and 909 running through a Sync Gen 2 Pro box, which keeps them all super tight with Logic’s clock. I love to blend my favourite drum elements form each of the machines – I love the low-end kick, tom and congas from the 808, and the punchy kick, hi-hats and rides from the 909.
Mr Potato Head C-3PO
I love Star Wars and these are great to collect. You might also have spotted the storm trooper on the other side.