Workspace and Environment: The Teknoist

Big day here! If you have been stalking us, you would already know I've uploaded two Surachai albums which can be found: Here. They'll be permanently available through my profile page to the right. Justin has some goodies lined up for you too. On a related topic, Justin will be performing as Polyfuse this friday at the Abbey Pub in Chicago. Details: Here! With all that crap out of the way, I present you with Mike Teknoist!

I was born in Manchester but grew up in North Wales and moved to Bristol. I'm looking for somewhere new to live though. As I said, I get itchy feet. I blame ADHD haha. I've been playing records in clubs since I was 15 years old, it was a natural progression I guess. I started messing around with Amigas and Ataris and trackers etc but then sort of just went back into playing records solely, turntablism and stuff. I wanted to master those kinds of skills 1st. Then I started playing around with Cubase on the PC and haven't stopped. The amount of ideas that I was having I guess was motivation enough at the time, constantly sampling noises, speech etc from all over the place. And the fact that there wasn’t enough of the type of sound I wanted to hear around. There'd be the odd track that blew me away and I could never really understand why there wasn’t more along that vein so the obvious choice was to make it myself. Staying motivated isn’t that hard, it's kind of 2nd nature to just get up and write music 1st thing in the morning. My whole day revolves around that, that and watching movies or reading. Its not really a choice, more an instinct kind of thing (like a zombies hunger for brains). I cant imagine not doing it so I rarely have to find motivation because its all I want to do. You can find my *ahem* work on my own label ‘Ninja Columbo’ for a start and then on a lot of other electronic music labels such as Planet Mu, Deathchant, Rebel Scum, Cock Rock Disco and soon Ad Noiseam, Deathsucker… I could go on with upcoming stuff but I wont. You can get a taster on my myspace obviously, myspace.com/ninjacolumbo

What is your current favorite piece of hardware?
Hahaha… heres my kit list at the moment: a laptop, a pair of Sennheiser HD25 headphones… not even a midi controller atm.
So I guess its my laptop, it was custom built 3 years ago and its like my brother. 17.5inch screen, 3.4 Pentium 4 processor, 2 gig of ram. It’s a tank, although the screen needs replacing as an inch or so on the right hand side is now broken because I dropped it. Finding time to send it away when I'm touring etc is hard so I've been working with it broke for a while.
My girlfriend blew my monitors getting far too carried away listening to music so the headphones have been a saviour. I seem to do alright.

What is your current favorite software or plugin?
I'm using the Ixl spectrum Analyzer a lot on my master out for visually checking my eq but effect wise I use PSP Nitro a heap and the GRM tools bunch. The SSL compressor also.

How does your physical space and surroundings influence your workflow?
I'm actually a vagrant at the moment and kind of have been for a while, I can't settle anywhere it seems but I'm looking for a new place. I'm staying in a friends spare room but the surroundings are gorgeous. No neighbours, just fields and farms so that’s really relaxing and it’s a joy to wake up there. I go for a run around 7am and do some stretches while watching a variety of US sitcoms like Frasier and Everybody Loves Raymond haha :s … then make some tea and fire up my laptop. I have adhd so I've got to do quite a few things at once and constantly get up and mess with something else, start watching a film then turn it off 20mins in then back to work on a different track, then wash the dishes, then the film again etc haha.. When I have settled for a while in a place I found it so nice and productive to get up and have that set work area that everything is just waiting for you to switch on. Then again I've written some of my best tracks while on the move in other countries so im kinda on the fence on whats the best. Although I think my not having a proper base time is finally up. I long for my own studio space now though so il get back to you when Im settled with some new kit etc and tell you how im doing, what films im half watching etc ;)

What was the first and last piece of hardware you remember obtaining?
My Atari ST and a really dodgy midi controller was the 1st. The last were a pair of Event tr8 monitors

What is on your current 'wish list'
I've got a list of essential things that I intend to buy over the summer in time to hibernate in Winter 08 but no specific models really as yet. A couple of pairs of different kinds of monitors, an analogue desk and a new midi controller..

How many physical locations have you had your studio setup?
Jeez! Umm.. A LOT. Iv had 2 decent set ups in different locations. One in Manchester and one in Bristol. They were pretty much the same as each other, big desk, laptop and pc, midi controller and some decent monitors, turntables, dj mixer etc. But mostly iv just lived like iv been touring because I guess Iv just never really stopped properly so its juts been my laptop and headphones.

Have you ever heard your music being played at a random/public place?
I was on a tram in Manchester once and heard a guy in front of me listening to an old rave tape of mine with an mc shouting my name on it.. that and the same happened in Wales when someone drove past in their car.


Anonymous said...

Best setup ever. I dig minimal, as in minimal setup!

Anonymous said...

What a complete and utter twat.