Audeze speaks with dance music producer DJ Eazy

DJ Eazy is an international dance music producer from the UK who has performed all over the world including tours of America, Canada and Australia. His music is regularly played on national radio stations such as Radio 1, KISSFM, 1xtra and others. He has released music on many established labels including Andy C's label (RAM) and Buygore's label (Fresh Blood), as well as his own label Walking Dead Recordings.

 

"The headphones were beyond my wildest expectations, it feels like I'm hearing my mix for the first time... Best studio buy I’ve ever made, couldn’t work without them." - DJ Eazy
Here's our talk with DJ Eazy:
Can you pick out any favorites from your work that you're particularly proud of?

Although I believe a mix is never finished and can always be better, I was quite happy with the mix on this track.

Also one of my live sets that reached over 300,000 plays I was very happy with.

How would you define your main role on most of the projects you work on these days?

I became obsessed with making music some 8 years ago, I soon began to learn that studying all aspects of music production would give me a great advantage to achieving the desired sound I was aiming for, as mixing and mastering are just as important as producing a track. So I have always produced mixed and mastered all of my own work and a lot of my team members as well.

How did you get started in music? What kind of music did you listen to while growing up and how has that progressed?

At school when I was 12 years old, I walked through a hallway and some kids were playing some jungle music (174bpm). I had never heard anything like it before and was instantly hooked, the fast tempo big drums and heavy basslines was everything I had been looking for, I asked the kids where I could find more music like this and they swiftly directed me to the local record shop. From there I discovered tape packs, turntables, vinyl and was like a kid in a candy shop. I got a side job whilst at school so I could get a cheap pair of belt drives as soon as possible and thus my DJ journey began. I had previously been listening to garage, trance and a lot of dance music but from this point on was 100% jungle and drum and bass orientated.

Can you name any factors you feel majorly influenced the course of your musical life? Heroes, role models, moments, interactions, etc?

I was heavily inspired by Andy C in terms of DJ performances, his ability to get every mix perfect every time, the track selection was impeccable and just in general the way he delivered the live performance was on point. Which made it extra special when some years later he would eventually go on to sign my music to his sister label Program and his main label RAM. In terms of music production DJ Hazard was and still is the biggest inspiration to me, his productions are incredible, his ideas and style are unrivaled and ultimately it's what inspired me to save up and buy Logic and an iMac so that I could start producing music. In terms of moments, playing at Rampage was one of the biggest moments for me, Rampage is the biggest drum and bass/dubstep festival in the world. Performing to 15,000 people in an arena with a crowd singing your songs back to you was beyond my wildest dreams. I'm my own biggest critic and I'm sure most producers will agree it sometimes feels like you can never be as good as your peers, but reaching that level and seeing the response really gave me the confidence and push to keep studying and working on my sound design.

Can you briefly describe a moment of frustration from your past work, and what you may have done to overcome the obstacles? Would you approach it differently now?

A big frustration I have had during my time as a producer is not being able to work in a treated room, I have never had access to a professional studio and the environment in which you work is vital to your final mix/track reaching its potential. So I have always had to make do with what I had. After performing at Rampage I quit my full-time job and signed up to an audio engineering course at university in Brighton, UK... University has taught me how much I under estimated the sometimes-unnoticeable damage you can do whilst producing a track due to the environment which you are producing in. Having sat through 100s of lectures from top engineers and established producers in the scene I was shocked to realise how many are mixing and mastering on headphones and achieving world class results. Even Andrew Scheps one of the most successful mixers in the industry admits himself he does a lot of his mixing and mastering on headphones. So instead of paying for expensive studio time I have recently invested in a UAD interface and am now using a pair of Audeze LCD-Xs so I can really take my songs to the next level.

Is there any gear you find yourself turning to most when working on a project? What are some of your favorite tools/instruments recently?

The UAD Apollo Twin Duo without a doubt is the number one tool I have purchased recently, great clarity, very simple to use, incredible plug-ins used by most of the top producers and engineers in the music industry: Soundtoys, Serum, Omnisphere, Gullfoss, Saturn, Kilohearts are some of my favourites that I tend to use on nearly every track right now.

Do you have any words of wisdom for people who might aspire toward a similar path for their own careers?

University isn't for everyone, but if you are starting to make money from music I would strongly recommend it, its opened up a lot of doors for me, I recently had some music signed to a Sony Music publishing group in a competition hosted by my university. As well as producing music for fans, there are many industries out there where you can be creative and earn money such as music for games, music for media and film, foley and sfx. If like me you are struggling with the acoustics of your home studio, try and get a great pair of headphones and a decent soundcard, if the top engineers in the game are achieving high quality results with these tools there's no reason anyone else can't. Remember the only difference between the top and you is experience and knowledge. And most importantly just keep being creative, even if you're having writers block just keep making sounds that you can use later when you're back on point. Record your microwave beeping and turn it in to a synth pluck, or grab a kick hit from your bin. Experiment as much as possible to try and create something original. It's better to sound new than good in my opinion.

How long have you been working with headphones, and how do you typically use them in your workflow?

Since I started university a few years ago, and now I use them on every track from start to finish. I of course will then reference on my monitors, iPhone headphones, car, laptop, pretty much anything that plays audio. My headphone mixes are without a doubt considerably better than my monitor mixes (Yamaha HS8 Monitors).

How have your Audeze headphones affected your work? What have you been working on with them lately?

The headphones were beyond my wildest expectations, it feels like I'm hearing my mix for the first time, minuscule changes on my hardware synths were so clear and detailed that had went unnoticed on my previous headphones. The sense of space and placement makes it so much easier to mix. The ability to distinguish bad samples from good samples when browsing through libraries is so much more emphasised with these headphones which immediately improves the quality of your music-- as they famously say you can’t polish a turd, and sample selection is a crucial part to producing any song. Best studio buy I’ve ever made, couldn’t work without them.

My multi genre album 'Don't Think' will be dropping on May 8th 2022.