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We’re going Beyond The Clouds

James McAdam and Steven Dooley combine to form Delac, a dancefloor-primed blend of broken beat, progressive house, electro, UK garage, and leftfield pop as a welcomed antidote to the self-serious image sometimes associated with the electronic scene. With their forthcoming releases, the duo have pushed their sound into a dreamier, upbeat, and more transportative place. This openness of feeling and desire to inject positivity characterises much of Delac’s music.

We’ve spoken with the duo over their latest release of “Beyond The Clouds” to unveil the behind the scenes, the inspiration behind the album and the duo’s workflow!

The words of Delac for Voidmagazines All Rights Reserved © Void Magazines

Picture this: The night is nearly over, the crowd start chanting the classic “One more tune”… What track do you pick from your setlist to end the show with? (And why)

Darude Sandstorm. A classic and a banger that everyone can get into. Plus, the crowd have probably heard enough of our tunes by the end of the set!

No, in all seriousness, we’d probably close with an unreleased tune of ours that we’re planning to bring out later this year. It’s called ‘Close to Midnight’ it’s a taste of our new ‘dance led’ sound mixed with a catchy, sentimental vocal hook that we’re really proud of.

Collaboration is where the magic happens, with your latest “Beyond The Clouds EP” it is evident that your styles have collided to create an album full of experimental, new and progressive sounds. Where did the idea behind “Beyond The Clouds” originate from?

We found there was a big disconnect between the tunes we were producing and the tunes we loved to listen to. We made a big effort to switch that up and start writing tunes we’d want to listen to on repeat for hours. Beyond the Clouds was the first of that new wave of tunes to come out of the studio. Instantly we knew we’d found a good sound and direction for a new EP (we almost did an album). We’d even started exploring much faster and heavier music for a while, but found the sweet spot around 130bpm.

The main inspiration was the dance floor. We forced ourselves to produce these tracks standing up instead of sitting down. We wanted to get past the laid back posture and vibe of our previous tracks. Standing up was the best litmus test to see if our hips moved involuntarily. And yes sir, thanks for asking, them hips did move.

From idea to finished recording, how does that happen? Can you give me the run through on a typical Delac workflow?

We usually start with the drums as they form the foundation of most electronic tracks and require a lot of layering and stripping away to get right. Next would come the bass and chords in a key that suits James’ range (usually D minor) before adding in some catchy, top-line synths. We’ve been playing around with the Baby Audio BA-1 digital synth recently which has given us some retro 80s sounds as well as a Juno 106 that’s been lying around in the studio. Vocal hooks and lyrics are the toughest piece of the puzzle. We want to make something positive and catchy but also not too cheesy.

Over the past year, we’ve been producing tunes at our studio in the Premises, Hackney, East London and mainly use Ableton to mesh all the midi and audio clips together.

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