The latest EP out on Point Blank Music is by Stee-V-Lee (real name Steve Reightler), a producer from Bel Air, Maryland. Low Fidelity is his first release with us, and is the culmination of his personal exploration into the lo-fi house sound pioneered in the late 80s and more recently championed by the likes of Ross From Friends and DJ Boring. ‘Thank You’ is a classic example of the crunchy building blocks that define the sound, while ‘Base Line’ is a 303-led acid stomper. If you’d like to learn how to produce, check out our complete production course online here.
Low Fidelity is out now and available for purchase on iTunes and Beatport, and can be streamed on all major platforms including Spotify. We caught up with Steven for a little chat about his musical development.
Hi Steven, to start us off can you give me a little background? How did you get into music in the first place?
I started playing drums back in primary school but picked up the guitar in my teen years. I was into 70’s rock and I played rhythm guitar in a garage band with some friends. As more bands started incorporating synths into their music I decided to have a go at that, especially when midi became available. Computers and electronic music fascinated me. I bought a used Casio CX-101 from a friend, then added a Yamaha DX-100 and RX-21 to the mix. Later, the mighty Korg M1 joined the fleet. My musical interests began to be more “New Age” (although I wasn’t into that philosophy) and experimental. After a number of years, life’s busyness got in the way and I wound up selling most of my gear. About 7 or 8 years ago I was re-introduced to electronic music by my daughter. She was into Trance, Dubstep, and D&B. I thought to myself it’s time to have another go. So I downloaded Ableton Lite and began mucking about with the different plugins and free VSTs that I found on the internet. Eventually, I bought a microKorg and Korg Legacy M1 VST. I don’t currently have a proper studio. Most of my production is on my laptop with headphones.
What sort of music are you into, what are some of your biggest inspirations?
My current musical interests include jazz, swing, classic rock, and Underground House. I don’t have any specific inspirations but I always admired musicians that weren’t afraid to try something new … go beyond the status quo in other words.
Tell me about the EP, what went into making it?
For the past year or two, I’ve been experimenting with what has been dubbed “Lo-Fi” House music. I was looking to recreate some of the low fidelity sounds of the late 80s early 90s by using lower bit rates on samples and minimal production. But I also wanted to add my own “sauce” to the mix. That is the inspiration behind the EP, ‘Low Fidelity.’ Both of the tracks on this EP have an Acid House vibe going on but I’ve added kind of a chill melodic layer on top of that. But don’t worry, there is plenty of 303 action going on there. I especially like in “Base Line” where I used two 303 parts.
What have you got in store this year? Any gigs lined up or goals your working toward?
I’m not sure what 2018 has in store. I’ve taken a little break from my music to pursue a couple of other interests, one of those is writing a book. As far as the music goes, I’m sure I’ll be back at it before too long. I’m thinking about writing my own lyrics and adding my own vocals to some of my future projects. We’ll see. The past year was a very productive year as far as the number of tracks produced but also in the new things I learned about production. I hope to continue that trend this year.
Low Fidelity is out now and available for purchase on iTunes and Beatport, and can be streamed on all major platforms including Spotify. Check out the rest of the releases on Point Blank Music’s YouTube channel, and study with us to build your skills and have a chance of releasing with us. Check out production courses in London here, or if you live elsewhere, take a look at the online courses we offer. For more info head to our contact page and get in touch!
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