5 differences in DNB production from 2001 to today

5 differences in DNB production from 2001 to today


September 9th, 2015


Making Drum and Bass in 2001 vs Today could we learn a lesson?


Some of my favourite DnB was made in the early 2000s, This morning I was having my toast and tea and thinking about a new Ableton macro I am making called multiFX which is just a bunch of Reverbs and Delay presets like the old Midiverb and it got me thinking about the studio I have in my basement with a bunch of hardware and no computers apart from an MPC for sequencing. I like to keep a reminder about how fucking hard and annoying it was making music in 2001. I do make tunes down there but I have to set aside a lot of time if I am gonna do it right, the limitations were almost some part of the creativity in a way. Just to rename a sound on an Akai s5000 with no keyboard and a scroll wheel takes a minute, This was down time and on a lot of the great you could not listen to your tune when you were editing a name or parameter. Here is 5 differences to be thankful or perhaps learn from between 2001 and today…


1: Accessability

Screen Shot 2015-09-09 at 13.53.22

Gear was expensive making it harder to make tunes, You really had to work to get that gear you wanted so bad. There was not so many sample packs and pre made things to get you started. I think we are very lucky no to have so much amazing stuff to work with now with all the pre made drum loops and samples, but is there a chance we could all get lazy and sounding like eachother, instead should we go searching out samples off TV, Youtube and Records.


2: A Sample Basis

Screen Shot 2015-09-09 at 13.43.05

There was music software for making tunes just on the computer but it was just becoming useable so most people were still on racks and racks of expensive hardware with lots of complications and quirks. you would have to build and learn your system for years. Sampling was a massive part of this. Chopping up sounds endlessly, Finding sounds from here and there and making the whole thing very personal and even funny, I put a sound of my fart in a tune once and then played it out that night and every one was dancing to the sound of my fart. I took a kind of perverse joy in this.


3: Dub plate Culture:

Screen Shot 2015-09-09 at 13.49.29

The excitement to want to make the next tune must have been electric when you had such a strong Dub plate culture. I feel as if the music was less throw away and tunes would stay with DJs for much longer. I don’t put out every thing I make but I do send out tunes to a lot of my DJ mates and my tunes could be on the underground for months or years or even never see the light of day and get a release and just be in peoples DJ sets, I get a good feeling about art being like appreciated like that.


4: The internet,


In 2001 It was a dial up affair and sending tunes via email was still not really possible, you would make your tunes, burn a CD send it to the label and never hear from them again 🙂 or maybe in 3 weeks or so after you sent it. you had to be damn sure the tunes you were sending were right. There was also no offline bounce and you would have to listen to the whole tune as it played when you were finally done because you were recording it to a DAT tape or CD and if you were using a desk you would not be able to work on the track again so you and to do your remix stems and other stuff them and commit and put it to bed.


5: Key.

Screen Shot 2015-09-09 at 13.55.36

I never even used to think about what key a tune was in back in 2001. Nowadays it seems that tracks have much more in tune samples and sounds because we are all using software synthesis for a lot of our sounds. Now I am not saying weather it is better to have things more of less in tune but I know that back in day you could mix a lot of tunes with lots of others and they just would kinda mix and not clash even if they were not in the same key.



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.