Nathan Fake on the hardware and software behind his new album, Providence

Having eschewed the blended delights of London for a go back to his native Norfolk three years in the past and beaten a -12 months patch of the feared creator’s block, Nathan Fake reenters the musical fray. It’s a go back of a few fashion and swagger with Providence; a new album filled full of impossible to resist synths, arpeggios, and warped rhythms.

Fake’s popularity has been built on his specific tackle digital track. He first got here to light in 2003 whilst a come upon with similarly mercurial electronic musician James Holden brought about Fake’s debut single, Outhouse, on Holden’s Border Community label. The luxurious LP Drowning in a Sea of Love in 2006 noticed Fake lauded as primary new expertise on the digital track scene and has been followed via a slew of critically acclaimed albums and EPs and remixes for the likes of Jon Hopkins, Radiohead, Perc, and Clark.


Providence is a beautiful dinner party of digital tactics and a special welcome one in that it indicators an end to Fake’s creator’s block and, hopefully, the beginning of a long and fruitful journey with Ninja Tune. We had been overjoyed to seize up with him at his home studio in Norfolk to find out more approximately the digital and analog equipment in the back of his best work but. You’ve got an eclectic array of synths at your disposal. Can you speak to us through them?

Nathan Fake:

“There’s a pic walking Ableton and Cubase. I’ve been given a Korg Prophecy, one of the essential matters I used in Providence. There’s a Jupiter-6 as properly, and an Arturia MicroBrute turned into used a tiny bit for some bass sounds. “In phrases of drum machines, there’s a Casio RZ-1 and a Roland Aira TR-eight. Again, the TR-eight turned into used pretty sparingly, in particular for bass drum sounds. It’s first-rate, however weird that it doesn’t truely sound like an 808. It’s very boomy, so you ought to EQ the kick, as they’ve introduced like a 50Hz increase on it. I run it through a preamp to warm it up a touch because it within reason spiky and virtual, even though it’s fairly faithful to that analog, synthesized sound with the hello-hats and stuff, and there are a pair of truly high-quality more sounds too.”

hardware and software

The Korg Prophecy is a blast from the past.

“I remember while it came out – maybe about 1996 – analyzing that The Orb and Autechre have been using it and questioning it have to be a simply excellent synth. I occurred across one online the 12 months earlier than remaining and the notion I’d test it out. It’s a weird little component that looks like a MIDI controller, and it’s a completely unusual synth. It’s a mono synth, but it’s were given quite a deep synthesis system to it. Korg got here up with their MOSS [Multi-oscillator synthesis system], which means it has all the standard rectangular, triangle, etc.; waveforms; however, it additionally has reeds, brass, and plucked strings. Some of these dense, washy virtual synths; however, it’s a mono synth so that you have huge pad sounds; however, you could only do one word at a time!

“I suppose the Triton and the Trinity advanced from the Prophecy, and I’ve in no way honestly been into those big workstations, but I like how awkward the Prophecy is, and the sounds of it are pretty. Usable.” There’s an actual warm temperature to the synths on Providence. How did you achieve that? “I like that blending of aesthetics when you hard up against something pristine and virtual. I’ll record stuff onto cassette tapes… And also while you’re taking a phat stereo sound and squeeze it into mono, that provides a one-of-a-kind size to it too.” Do you watch software program makes us too lazy to feature ‘that little something extra’ to the sound?

“Yeah, perhaps. Currently, though, I assume tape has come back. Loads of labels are even freeing cassettes once more; that is simply the antithesis to virtual streaming or MP3s, truly—the same purpose vinyl. We were given famous once more – it’s a pleasant alternative to the virtual codecs. “When I started making music, I’d put things onto cassette, as that changed into all I had. Then I were given a computer, which turned into extraordinary, and now I’m recording stuff onto tape again as I suppose tape sounds excellent.” You suffered a piece of creator’s block. Did Providence are available one huge rush after that?

“It clearly did, virtually. It didn’t take lengthy at all. I started out writing things toward the cease of 2015. However, I commenced working well on the tracks a final year, and I’d were given the album all finish June’s aid of June. There become quite a few overlaps, where I turned into writing stuff and completing stuff on the identical time, so all the tracks had been on the go at the same time.”

Being an electronic musician is like spinning plates at instances.

“[Laughs] Yeah. Mainly while your paintings on a PC. You can carry up to a saved task, paintings on it for a chunk, then transfer to something else. I bet I did use lots extra hardware than I actually have before, so I caught to one track at a time more than I’ve carried out in the beyond. My older stuff was achieved solely at the computer, so it turned into surely fun having extra physical stuff to use.”

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Spent a year testing the market for sock monkeys in Naples, FL. My current pet project is donating robotic shrimp in Hanford, CA. Spent several months getting my feet wet with weed whackers worldwide. Spent 2001-2006 training shaving cream in Hanford, CA. Crossed the country lecturing about bathtub gin in West Palm Beach, FL. Spent 2001-2007 implementing licorice with no outside help.