We’re back with Ski Oakenfull for an extra special deconstruction of Adamski’s huge 90s hit, ‘Killer’, featuring soul-sensation, Seal. This deconstruction is particularly special as we were joined by Adamski himself to answer some questions about his processes, how he hooked up with Seal for the track and his career before delving into the magic behind his anthemic ‘Killer’. In case you don’t know, Ski is our Head of Curriculum so whether you study with us in London or Online (or elsewhere) he will have a major hand in what you learn at the school. If you’d like to grab yourself the sounds used in this deconstruction, Ski has kindly put together an Ableton 10 pack featuring those gorgeous Ensoniq SQ 80 Sampler instruments. You’ll be able to open this up inside Ableton Live and start churning out some retro sounding synth magic. Full download here, but remember you’ll have to register with us first to access our wealth of free samples, plugins, deconstructions and more.
The Adamski-produced ‘Killer’ was released back in 1990 and fuses influences from acid house and soul with plenty of dancey vibes mixed in. What started off as an instrumental to be included in the UK-producer, DJ and singer’s live sets soon became a legendary earworm that’s racked up millions of plays to date. The track was created using the iconic Roland TR-909 as well as the Ensoniq SQ 80 synth and a Yamaha RX120 Drum Machine (some pieces of gear Ski goes into more detail about in the video) and featured on Adamski’s Doctor Adamski’s Musical Pharmacy which was released by major label, MCA.
For the deconstruction, Ski fires up Ableton Live 10.1 with his trusty Push 2 and loads up Ableton’s stock 909 kit. He punches in the beat starting with kicks, claps, rim shots and hats before breaking for an exclusive interview with the man behind the track. Picking things back up, Ski keys in the iconic bassline revealing a plugin he found which emulates the distinct sound perfectly. He plays in the emotional chords for ‘Killer’ shedding some light on the music theory behind the track then gets to work on the rave piano and bell synth which lends that added sparkle. Ski rounds things off by adding the vocals to the song which were recreated by Valerie Etienne and recorded in Point Blank’s studio 5.
Feeling inspired? This musical approach to breaking down a track is just a small example of what’s covered in great depth on our BA (Hons) Music Production & Sound Engineering Degree. We also offer an online alternative in the form of our distance-learning online BA (Hons) Music Production & Sound Engineering Degree.
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