Johnny Beverton is the latest signing from our friends at Translation Recordings in the US. Hes been making tunes for a while and has got a string of releases coming up this year in a number of different genres. Its safe to say the man has a few strings to his musical bow. We caught up with him to find out how his signings have come about how he works in the studio and a load of other stuff.
Example: Both of these tracks are outstanding and well done on this release, Big things indeed! How did you get involved with Translation Recordings ?
Johnny: Thanks, glad you're feeling the release. I got involved with Translation via a good friend of mine, LM1 who runs a label called Offworld Recordings. I'd just started a couple of new tunes on a different vibe to what I was previously doing and the reactions I was getting were really positive. I was discussing tunes with him for a release on Offworld when he mentioned that he’d given Brian my email - next thing I’m talking about music with him, sending him music and these two tracks were the standout ones for him!
Example: How did you get involved with production? Was it through the love of DJ'ing at all? Or did it just come naturally to you?
Johnny: I became involved in production via university - I was actually studying a classical music degree but a module on sound and field recording really opened my eyes (and ears) into the power of sound manipulation. I guess I found it fascinating that making music that was musically interesting was so different to making stuff that was sonically interesting! Combining the two was my next goal...
Example: How would you describe your music to people?
Johnny: I’m not going to over complicate it - this release is drum & bass. Tonedab was made with a specific aim to achieve (destruction!) but I’d hope that the musical intricacies in Polymol would attract a listener to think beyond the regular linear structure of drum & bass.
Example: I know a lot of young and new producers out there would be interested in knowing whether you use Hardware or Software to make your music with. Is there any insight to this? I know a lot of us would like to know.
Johnny: I’m a software guy - not only from a cost perspective (VSTs are cheaper!) - call it a sign of our digital generation but I quite like the cold sound you can achieve from lining up software synths. I only use one VST to get pretty much all my sounds (aside from the drums, and even some of them are made with synthesis) so it helps to be able to line up 15+ copies of the same VST
and not have to be fiddling with wires!
Also I like the control that you’re given with sequencers - I’m running an old rusty version of Cubase but it does the trick for me! Changing textures are easily done through automation and I love the way that Cubase, Logic et al visualise this.
Example: Would you say that you have been influenced by any other music at all, outside of Drum n' Bass? Anybody in particular you would like to mention?
Johnny: I’d definitely say my music is influenced by ambient music - the likes of The Black Dog, Stars Of The Lid, BVdub and others play a large part, although you may not hear it. Otherwise during the day I don’t tend to listen to much drum & bass, as it’s frowned upon in the office!
Example: Are you going to be collaborating with anyone in the future and If you could collaborate with anyone, who would it be?
Johnny: I’m in quite a few talks about some collaborations (although they largely remain outside of Drum & Bass) - but do watch this space!
I’d love to collaborate with some of my heroes in the UK scene at the moment - the likes of Space Dimension Controller, James Blake and Ramadanman are really opening my ears to new sounds.
Example: Do you have any other projects on the go at the moment?
Johnny: Indeed - I’ve got a release forthcoming on Broken Audio and I’m in talks with Translation about a release outside of Drum & Bass. I also have some Future Garage tunes that will be seeing a release soon - so keep an eye on my Soundcloud.
On a different tangent altogether I’m talking with a good friend who goes under the name of Val-d'Isére about taking some of his incredible music and turning it into a project. Check his tune ‘Pinpoint’, it’s ace!
Example: What's your ultimate direction, the reason behind making music?
Johnny: This is a toughie - who wouldn’t say their ultimate reason behind music is to make people happy (and in my case, dance around a lot). Wouldn’t mind making enough from it to pay my rent as well!
Example: Where have you performed? and do you have any upcoming shows?
Johnny: I’ve performed at all kinds of random places, from pool parties in Ibiza to a manky warehouse rave... I’m playing at The Gramaphone in Aldgate this Thursday for my friends night called Shhhed (http://shhhed.com) - I met these guys when they were throwing a party at The Big Chill and they sure know how to do things right!
Example: Who else would you recommend at the moment and who do you think will be breaking through into the Drum & Bass scene in the future? Anyone in particular you would like to mention?
Johnny: I got switched on to the sounds of a dude called Er.ic from Stunna’s GreenRoom show on Bassdrive (check it out!).
Aside from that I’ve been a big fan of HLZ since I first heard his music (I’m still waiting on a release from him of a dub I’ve got that was meant to come out ages ago!) Sabre switched me onto another guy called ENA (from Tokyo I think?) who’s got an interesting take on music too.
You’ve just reminded me that I need to have a look through my AIM folder!
Example: Pineapple on pizza? What are your views on this?
Johnny: Rock on!!
Example: Any last words? Anyone you want to shout out to?
Johnny: Thanks for the support and keep an eye out - I’ve kicked myself into shape and am setting myself up with lots of gigs!
Big shouts out to all of the crew on AVR radio who put up with my foolishness on my radio show (Sunday afternoons will never be the same again), the labels who are keeping things real in the scene and those who are doing their best to push things forward... in and outside of Drum & Bass!
Example: Thanks for your time here Johnny, we wish you all the luck with the release and for your future!
Johnny: Pleasure! Cheers for having me :-)