Eats Everything is back with his biggest release to date – an 8 track EP for the eighth release for his EI8HT label. We got him to talk us through it, Track By Track.
“The overall concept for this extended EP was to have brand new original tracks for the 8th release on my label EI8HT which I run with Andres Campo. Of course, Corona got in the way of many release plans, so as these are predominantly dancefloor-oriented tracks, we postponed the release for when clubs reopened. However, that didn’t happen so after some extra time in the studio, I wanted to have this one out before the end of this very weird year.
The 8 tracks are to showcase my take on the sound of the label and what it’s all about. It’s got a heavy focus on that groovier sounding techno, with a funky edge. Not too hard or hammering, it hits your face, but just a bit. It’s my emulation of some of the mid to early 90s techno which I grew up listening to, taking inspiration from Rotation Records, Dave Angel, The Advent and Dave The Drummer song others. It’s a mish-mash of UK influenced groove-laden techno.
The creative process was just to really get into the studio and get experimenting with sequencers, grooves and polyrhythmic sounds. Something I have played around with before, but never produced, finished and released anything from it. The end goal was always a release which is still true to my sound, the labels and the dancefloor.
This was one of the last records I made, there was about 12 in total. Inspired by Robert Hood, it’s quite tough but still funky. A lot of the tracks on this release are run through the WA76 compressors, after its complete, or one or more of the elements, say the kick, are driven through it. I use Infected Mushrooms IMPusher on a lot of the elements in different ways, it’s really helpful and adds something different. It provides warmth, depth and also a harmonic element to the low end which is really helpful when making techno. My Moog Voyager is my go-to synth & it’s used on the riffs in this. I run all my outboard gear through the Strymon El Capistan delay & the Strymon Deco pedals, even if it’s just on dry, running it through gives it a little something extra. For any delay elements on the tracks, they are all through the Strymon.
I’ve been playing around with the vocal sample on this track for years, maybe 3 or 4. It’s an old sample, and nothing ground-breaking, but it holds the groove perfectly. The main synth is from the Voyager again, run through the Strymon pedals. Just enough so you can hear the way the delay moves; it just adds a bit of depth to it. I recorded the dry signal on the stereo channel, and then the wet signal too, so that it’s layered and adds depth. For the kick drum I use the IMPusher again. I use the fab filter Saturn as well on that, its a really great saturator & really lifts elements. Then the whole track is run through the Warm WA76 Compressors, just to give it a little something extra.
Trade is kind of an ode to early trade days and the kind of music that was played then. Not super hard, but in that place between house and techno. It’s probably the most mellow track on the release, even though it’s still not that mellow, but it’s got a nice tribal groove to it. The drums are something I haven’t done in techno yet, using the Spectrasonics Stylus RMX on everything but the kick. I put it into the single hits setting folder and then add a sequencer. The one I used was Max For Live Rozzer. I like it as it sort of chops the groove around and you can just see what you like at the end of it all. The lovely bleepy sounding riff is from the Arturia Matrix 12, which is a really cool soft synth and makes a lot of lovely noises. Nearly every track that I do, I bounce the pre-mastered stems from Ableton, put them in ProTools, put a plug-in called Heat on the master a couple of ticks to the right and one to the left and it just gives it that extra 10% on the crunchiness and brightness. Heat is like an analog feel from a digital perspective, which helps lift the mix and make everything louder and brighter.
This track is almost entirely sample-based, apart from one element – the drums. They came from the TR8S, played in one take and then chopped up, played around with. The kick is pretty massive, done with IMPusher as well as the Saturn again. I ran it through a warm compressor, bounced it back and then re-processed it into the track. As everything is nearly a sample, it’s straight forward, which is not normally the way I work, but I loved the sample and the way it worked in the track, so I just went with it. The delay I used with the vocal in the break is the Fab Filter Timeless 2, which I think is a really great delay. I love the way it moves when it’s finished, and the effect it gives for the end product sounds wicked.
This is all centred around a hardcore vocal sample I have wanted to use for years. I kept playing with it, but it never worked, until this time around. The acid line is from the Roland 303, the alarm sound is a sample of a horn, the kick drum in the IMPusher again, all run through the 1980 compressor which gives it a bit of extra grunt. I also got the drums via the TR-08s and used a Nomad Factory on the delays. Izotope Trash features a lot on all the tracks on this release for the more distorted parts. It’s an amazing distortion plug like no other in my opinion. The stems on this track are bounced into ProTools to give it a bit of space, I was taught this trick by Bruno Ellingham, who was the mix engineer for most of Massive Attacks albums, he has since become a friend and I often bounce ideas off with him.
So, with the 303 line in this track, I didn’t want to go overboard. I just wanted to keep it bubbling. I played around with it a bit and wanted to create a rolling groove rather than some massive crescendos. These tracks are all about the groove and not tons of mad elements all going on.
A track inspired by Felix da Housecat, and the random voice notes that he leaves me on What’s App. It’s not really even a techno track. Its more on a Chiwax/Lester Fitzpatrick,/Dancemania/Cajual/Relief style, with a modern edge and Felix talking nonsense on it. It’s all sample-based but processed in the same way. I try to process all tracks in the same way, so they sound similar, but then of course elements and techniques used on the tracks are what vary to keep things different. I forgot to mention that I run all my acid lines through Strymon Deco, even if you barely use it or layer it, it gives a grunt that’s really nice.
The very last track I made for this EP was ‘Wreckage’. Processed in a similar way, using the IMPusher, Fab Filter Saturn and also Izotope Trash on a lot of things. Strymon El Capistan and Deco also were used, but this time with the main lines I used Arturia Buchla Easel. This is a mad soft modular synth and was really the first time I had a proper go with it. It’s actually made me almost want to get into modular synthesis now, which is something I thought I would never say, as it all seems like a lot of faff, but wow. This only scratched the surface of what you can do. It also seemed not that impossible to use – it’s fairly easy and once you have some practising you get used to it. It’s a wicked tool and made a real difference to this track.
The kicks, like in all the tracks, I made myself. I bounce and layer 2 or 3 kicks, take the attack off them a bit and then squash them together without trying to then over process them: they just need a bit of oomph.
Eats Everything ‘8 Cubed’ is available now.
Photos by Dan Reid.