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ARTIST INTERVIEW: UK Music Producer K.1.2

Updated: Apr 14





Tell us about a project you worked on you are especially proud of?

I haven’t really been involved in anything exciting at the moment. Watch this space....

Editor Note: K.1.2 recently self published his first single and makes his label debut April 20th!

What's the biggest misconception about producing?

I think that you need to be able to play an instrument. I have not played an instrument since I was in school in my childhood. I played the trumpet when I was younger for a while but soon lost interest as I grew up. Learning to produce trance and techno does require the ability to understand key and scale so a small amount of music theory is needed, but there is enough information and learning literature out there to help as you go. I would say I have a basic grasp on music theory and it’s something I am continuing to learn each day I sit down to work on something new. Music is something I have always loved and so knowing what sounds good to ear is how I tend to work.

How would you describe your style?

I haven't really developed a style per say, I like to be experimental, trying new things out to see if they work. I love the classic TB303 basslines, so I’d say that have some influence in the tracks I produce. I try to tell a story with music and I’m a sucker for Big Built-up Drops. I want people to feel the excitement of the Builds, you know that feeling where the hairs on the back of your neck and arms stands on end, then when it drops you can’t help but dance, nod your head or just pull a satisfying face.

What type of music do you usually produce?

I tend to fluctuate around Hypnotic and Raw Tech Trance, I love elements of trance, and I also love the driving beat of Techno, so the fusion of these together is just magical. I really struggle with repetitiveness, which is why I love the flow of trance, you can tell a story and then build it to an exciting energetic Drop.

Analog or digital and why?

I love the sound of analogue, I miss DJing on Vinyl, but the world is moving on. I don't use hardware when I produce, everything I do is digital but it’s easy enough to add Analog warmth and fx to digital productions.

What do you like most about producing?

Freedom, I like the peace and quiet it gives me. My journey into production has been a form of self-therapy. I was diagnosed with a Neurological Disorder that I may never recover from. This Disorder affects me in many ways, from Extreme Fatigue to memory loss, balance, and walking issues to complete confusion. This flipped my world upside down, I had to retire from a 20+ year long career I loved as I pretty much became housebound. The first few years were a very dark time for me. I decided I needed something to refocus my mind away from the struggles I was having. So, I bought a DDJ400 DJ controller and starting mixing again. This gave me focus and lifted me out of depression. After a while I decided I refocus on production. I wanted to be able to create something that would be my own and something that maybe others could enjoy. So, I got a 90-day free Ableton live Trial and bought an in-depth course. I was surprised to find that that the new information I was learning made sense and actually stuck. A big problem of my condition is short term memory loss and taking in new information but for some reason Ableton stuck. I then went through some production courses and started building tracks. It’s grown to be part of something I love, if I don’t sit down at the DAW and work, I feel very fatigued, suffering from headaches, so each day I do some work to kick start my brain and keep me focused.

How long have you been making music?

I started producing music in August 2023, when I started, I set my self some goals, the first major goal was simply to have one of my tracks played live to people as part of a set. As I am unable to do this myself, I started making contacts in the industry on threads. Speak with other producers and DJ's everyday about everything and anything, eventually a contact I made saw a short demo video of one of my tracks and asked to hear the whole thing. He really liked it and asked to drop it in a set that he had coming up which he did, and the track went down very well. he sent me a video of it being dropped and I was so happy to see people dancing, hands in the air and really feeling the vibe. That was such a great feeling it gave me the drive to get to my next goal. This was to get a track signed by an experienced label. Which Exist in trance has now done for me, again a massive milestone in my journey. My next goals will take some work, I would like a Beat port Top 100, Top 50, Top 25, and then a Top 10. I think these are reasonable goals, if I ever got a Beatport No1 id be over the moon. After that, my goal will be to actually try and get out to play a live set, but that I think is at least a year away as I have a lot to do to be able to get fit enough to be able to play live.

What's your typical work process?

I really don't have a full process that I stick to, I just like to sit down at the DAW and play around with stuff until I create something that gives me inspiration, once I have that I just start to build the track around that. That's why I love creating music, I can just let my mind wander in all directions. I do have a rule though that once I start a project beyond the inspiration phase I will always try to finish it, even if it’s not that great I will have a track mapped out. it may sit for a while, but I often go back into these tracks listen and see what I can do to make it better or ready to be releasable.

Tell us about your studio setup.

I don’t have a studio per say, I have my PC with dual 27' Curved screen set up and SteelSeries Arena7 speakers and Subbox, a Presonus Audiobox and headphones and then my DAW. I have a range of Instruments and plugins. I use Ableton Live currently version 11.3; I haven't got round to updating to v12 as it works fine for now and if it isn't broke don't fix it kind of mentality. I tend to favour Spire / Serum and Arturia Pigments as my go to synths as well as Arturia ACID V for that awesome 303 sound.

Can you share one production tip?

Finish as much as you can and learn arrangement, so many new producers get stuck on breaking out of a 16 bar Loop and it’s a nightmare I see so many people like this commenting on howe to break that cycle. I used to DJ a lot in my early 20's and relearnt those skills a few years ago. That gave me so much information in regard to arrangement phases which helps massively in my production journey. Being able to think about the whole track from intro to outro and all the relevant phases in between allows you to break that cycle. If you don't have that experience study reference tracks in the genre you are creating, break tracks down and make not of when things change. I roughly use a basic formular of 32 bars per phase and depending on the genre 8 or 16 bars per addition /subtraction of an instrument or vocal.

What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?

I have followed Armin Van Buuren's and Ferry Corsten's careers since the mid 90's early 2000's from when they were starting out as a DJ. I think they are certainly Pioneers' in the Trance music scene through their commitment to and development of the genre.

Another artist who does truly inspire me is Gareth Emery, I started watching a lot of his live sets from Ultra music Festival / Tomorrowland and Laserface. I liked his style of music, not afraid to mix it up in terms of his genre and often drops a range of his new music, some proper classics from the early 2000's as well as upping the tempo to 150bpm + at times. I read article about him before I decided to try and start learning to produce and it said that throughout his early career he was told to give up at times and he persisted to learn and improve himself no matter what. His release and 2012 ASOT tune of the year Concrete Angel are still used and remixed today. He shows that through dedication, hard work and a never quit attitude you can get what you want and to the level you earned.


ARTIST BIO:

Born and Raised in England U.K, Kieran aka K. 1. 2 (K. One. Two) discovered a love and passion for Electronic Music in his early teens. Spending many a weekend dancing the nights away at Raves like HelterSkelter in the 90's and then later clubs like Passion & Gatecrasher in the 00's. With a love for Trance and Techno he started to DJ in his late teens and had a passion for it until career, relationships and eventually having a family got in the way.


5 Years ago Kieran was diagnosed with a Neurological Disorder which affects muscle weakness, balance, speech and memory. He was forced to retire from his career in sales management. Housebound and depressed he decided to dust off the decks and get back to mixing. Fast forward a few years and his journey into production begins. Using music production as therapy to help keep his mind active he discovered a new found sense of purpose. He is now producing music with one aim and that's to simply make music people can dance to, or just sit back, listen and forget their own struggles in life for a while.


"Aspiring Techno & Tech Trance Producer and DJ. Trying to make sounds to help people escape from normality and just enjoy life. We all get a some tough cards dealt but music helps break away from life struggles." - K.1.2


Out Now: K.1.2's first release "Smile Through Your Tears" on Spotify!


SOCIALS:

INSTAGRAM EXIST IN SOUND TEAM WELCOMES K.1.2 TO THE LABEL!

DEBUT RELEASE DROPS SOON!


 

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