SoundShock: Well, let’s start from the beginning before we get into an technical questions. Who is Herzeloyde and how did the musical journey begin for you?
I've played and created music my whole life, however, I began working on music under the Herzeloyde name while I was still in High School. I decided to start a new alias for my production once I began uploading music to the internet and haven’t looked back since.
Your drops contain a lot of interesting cuts, textured sounds, drum fills, and bass fills. It can be easy to just throw in sounds without having the song sound cohesive. How do you go about choosing and arranging these complementary sounds so they come together and make sense to the listener?
I’ll continuously add ideas to see if they work, but I’m also pretty content removing anything if it’s not helping the overall tune. I often tweak the element to get it to fit into context with everything else in the mix.
Your drums, sub, and basses are mixed in very cleanly and give the track energy and power. Do you have any tips for mixing these elements together, so they provide this power?
I’m a huge fan of sidechain compression. The formula I tend to use is to sidechain the bass and any other elements against the kick. This will often create clarity as it ensures the kick doesn’t need to fight for space in the mix.
Many producers draw in midi notes with their mouse. This can lead to a stale sound that lacks those small little intricacies that real instrumentation and live playing provide. Do you have any tips for getting a real sounding instrument if you are just programing in your musical parts?
In all the years I’ve produced, I’ve clicked in my midi notes with a mouse. If your melody is feeling too stale I would suggest maybe taking off the quantize function and experimenting with different off-grid note placements. Pushing the phrases behind and ahead of the bar often work to create a more human or ‘real’ cadence.
What are some of your favorite plugins at the moment and how do you use them in your tracks?
It’s been a long time since I’ve branched out from my DAW’s dedicated plugins. I still love using the stock FL Studio generators and effects; some of my favourites include things like 3xOsc, Blood Overdrive, Love Filter and the Fruity Limiter. As you can probably tell, the brunt of my synth creation comes from 3xOsc and the Fruity Limiter is perfect for mixdowns/mastering chains.
A big sticking point for producers is not being able to finish tracks. Do you have any specific techniques that help you get past this?
There are times where I also struggle with finishing tracks. For me it’s usually because I’ve listened to the tune too many times and I’ve lost all objective view of the music. At that point, I tend to just push on and try to finalise the piece. Taking breaks to readjust your ears is also a good way to get a bit of perspective back so when you return to it, it’s easier to hear what needs to be done in order to finish cohesively.
"Taking breaks to readjust your ears is also a good way to get a bit of perspective back so when you return to it, it’s easier to hear what needs to be done."Herzeloyde
Your tracks contain very interesting drum rhythms and patterns that add to the overall vibe of your track. How do you go about choosing complementary drum samples and programming them in so they don’t just so they sound like they belong in the track?
I like to choose drum samples at the beginning of my creative process and ensure I pick things that are in accordance with the vision I have for the track. Ascertaining a clear idea of what I’m going for during this time is obviously key to the selection process. When deciding on a particular vision, I’ll often consider elements such as genre, tempo, mood, instrumentation, or chord progressions.
Aspiring producers these days lack patience. They want to produce the next big hit after they’ve only been producing for a short period of time and they get discouraged when the results aren’t immediately there. What motivated you to keep learning and improving through the beginning stages of your music career and what advice would you give to impatient producers?
I’ve personally always held the mindset that I’m still learning and have a long way to go. I still think this today and I intend to continually improve my art form. I produce out of a love for music and I think if you’re making music because you want immediate results, you’re setting yourself up for disappointment. Patience is a virtue.
What is the hardest part of producing for you and how do you work around it?
I feel that constructing the core direction of a song can often prove to be the most challenging part of production. As I said before, deciding on a particular concept for the song and making sure I stick to it usually assists in completing the initial blueprint for later stages. Once this is done, everything else usually flows quite naturally in terms of arrangement, mixing and finally mastering.
The last 10% of your track can be the toughest to finish. Are there any specific things you do to your track to get that last 10% finished? (Any specific mixing techniques, premastering, arrangement, etc.)
If I can see the finish line, I generally tend to push myself to wrap things up. I don’t enjoy spending too much time on one project as I find it’s easy to lose sight of the original concept if you spend too long tinkering. If you’re stuck I’d suggest finishing the tune off as best you can and moving onto the next idea.
Marketing & Branding
For better or for worse, social media is a big part of an artists career. How do you use social media to build your audience and brand?
I enjoy using social media as a platform for connection. It’s nice to have a dialogue with your supporters and the ability to engage in group discussions. I think this creates more of a family vibe within your specific audience.
Labels and curators are getting sent hundreds of tracks everyday. How do you get your demos heard when they are receiving such a huge quantity of music?
I personally try to rely solely on quality of music. This way you know you’ve successfully grabbed someone’s attention due to your art, not your hustle.
Thank you so much for the interview! What can we expect from Herzeloyde in the new future?
I’ve got a single coming out with Fool’s Gold Records on Jan 16th a few more beat cyphers with a bunch of the homies and a tonne of full length originals scheduled for 2018 that I’m excited to share.