Behind The Beat | Culture Code Interview
I recently had a great opportunity to talk with Chris, from Culture Code, the bass duo hailing out of the UK. Culture Code, made up of Chris and Dylan, have only been on the map for two years, but have already managed to gain a steady following of more than 45,000 on Facebook, and nearly 10,000 on Soundcloud. They’ve also been gaining a pretty steady fan base thanks to the support from artists like Adventure Club and Krewella. If you haven’t heard any of their stuff yet, here is the perfect opportunity below. Listen to their newest remix to ‘If I Lose Myself’ below, as you get to know a little bit more about the one and only Culture Code.
OTB: So for the readers who don’t yet know you, give them a little background on who you guys are.
CC: We are Chris & Dylan, better known as Culture Code. We are both 20 years old and are both from Birmingham, UK. The pair of us met in school at the age of about 14-15 and became very close friends pretty quickly. We have been making music for roughly over 2 years now. We have always preferred melodic music over any other so it we knew that we would take our music in the same direction. I would describe our music as melodically emotional but still maintaining the energy for the dancefloor!
OTB: How did you guys learn to produce music? Simply google and self taught, or any help from other DJ’s?
CC: Yeah all completely self taught! We did attend a music college which was completely useless, didn’t learn a single thing. What we did to learn was simply youtube, google and lots of forums! We never had help from anyone, purely because we didn’t know any successful people at that time!
OTB: Had you guys had any musical experience prior to starting this?
CC: None whatsoever, however I wish one of us had the chance to learn guitar. I love electronic tracks that incorporate guitars into them!
OTB: What equipment/software do you guys use to produce? what equipment/software for live shows?
CC: We now run Ableton Live, it is so good for getting ideas down quickly. This really helps with the way our workflow is. For live sets we use a Traktor S2 controller with Traktor on the laptop. Were looking on getting some new bits soon too such as a beatpad.
OTB: Have you guys ever thought about moving to the pioneer cdj’s like so many other dj’s have?
CC: Yeah its never really been about us wanting to go for the controller right from the start. We were on a budget, we had just won the ‘Meiko – Leave The Lights On’ remix competition and with the money from that, the S2 was all that we could afford. We would love to go for the CDJ’s but we would want to have our own pair to practice on them and master them if that makes sense. We don’t want to just turn up to a gig knowing the bare minimum about the equipment we are using, we want to learn it inside out.
OTB: Has there been one show in particular that really stands out to you?
CC: In all honesty, we haven’t actually played many shows at all. As it stands in the UK there isn’t as much as a demand for our music like there is over in the US, unfortunately but that can’t be helped. If we had to pick one though it would be at Cable, London. We played the same night as Zeds Dead, High Rankin, Bar 9 and more. Was a wicked set until the very end when the next DJ turned off the volume by accident lol! I guess it was always be a memory though haha!
OTB: If you could play any show, festival, venue, etc., what would it be? why?
CC: A dream festival would be tomorrowland! That place looks so good. It’s pretty much just House DJ’s though but we will be making a lot more progressive house in the near future, so you never know! We would also love to play EDC, that would be amazing!
OTB: Oh really leaning towards some prog house? what inspired that change?
CC: I think it was just inevitable really. As you stated were a melodic duo, and what genre better than progressive house can let you use a melody to its full extent! As well as that we just love the genre in general, i’d say we probably listen to more prog house than dubstep! Though that is where we take most inspiration from to put into our dubstep tracks!
OTB: It seems as though the most important part of your tracks/base for it, are the vocals. would you agree? if not, what are?
CC: Absolutely, especially for a remix. That is what we base our selection from. We usually try to go for a big vocal, quite ‘hands up in the air’ kind of vocals. We find you can get the best out of these in regards to creating emotion. On the subject of remixing, we pretty much will only keep the vocals if we are given stems, we prefer to just build around the vocal, unless there is something in the stems pack that really stands out or that will help bring out the emotion we are looking for!
OTB: What is one thing, NON MUSIC RELATED, that you have to have with you when producing? For example; beer, certain foods, etc.
CC: When we are both together working on a track we tend to have water now. We did used to have Coca Cola but we found that after a long session it tends to make you very tired and hungry lol. Other than that, Dylan likes to have a bag of sweets when he is producing lol!
OTB: If you could ask any artist in the world one question, who would be the artist and what would the question be?
CC: Good question, hmm… I think it would be Pegboard Nerds. I would ask them about the process they go through when making the drop of a track. Their stuff is crazy!
OTB: If you could collab with any artist, who would it be?
CC: I think right now it would be Vicetone, those guys are so talented and the stuff they are putting out at the moment is killer!
OTB: What can we expect from culture code in 2013?
CC: Many many more tracks! Some collaborations with some of our favorite artists and hopefully a lot of shows once we hit the States!! We have a busy year ahead of us, things are starting to get very serious and exciting and we can’t wait to see what happens over this next year!
OTB: Any final words to say to your increasingly large fan base?
CC: Yeah, we’d just like to say thank you so much, we owe everything to you guys for your continued support and for this, expect a few more free tracks very soon!
OTB: Last question to close it out not edm related, if you could marry any celebrity, who would it be?
CC: Mila Kunis, without a doubt!
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