So Maztek, talk us through your set up?
Maztek: Hi and thanks for this interview, my setup is really basic, I use Cubase, I have the Adam’s A77X monitors but I like to work a lot with headphones as well so I have many different types, from Sennheiser HD650, audio technical and a pair of Audeze LCD-X which Gridlok recently borrowed me.
I use mostly VST such as MeldaProduction FXs or Fab Filter and Ozone. To make sounds I use Xfer Serum or FM8 or Massive but I have also a Virus Ti2 Which is pretty awesome and recently I got myself a Microbrute.
What one piece of gear would you love to own?
Maztek: I would love to own many analogue synths to be honest particularly the Dave Smith Prophet 12 but so far I’m happy with what I already have.
What are your top 5 effect plugins and why?
Maztek: Melda Production Mautoalign because it very useful when layering kicks and snares, Addictive drums 2 to write drums, Mautoequalizer or Mdynamic Equalizer because they are awesome but also fab filter Q2 and I use many waves plug ins to process vocals.
What synths do you use the most in your productions?
Maztek: FM8 and Serum because they are the very best for basslines and synths and Kontakt for sound design elements.
Where do you find inspiration? Also if you are working in the studio and get stuck; how do you get past that point?
I find inspiration from feeling good, so whenever I feel good I produce and whatever makes me feel good including those things which give me a different prospective and stimulate my imagination, they can be Maztek: movies, a tune, a person it really depends but the key word is feeling good.
When I get stuck I just leave it there I learned that forcing myself to finish it does not work, I just start something new, I leave the other project there for a while till it inspires me again.
How long have you been producing?
Maztek: Many years really, but I always learn something new, production is a never ending learning and improving experience.
How do you usually start tracks?
Maztek: I usually start from a drum groove, if it makes me curious then I develop the tune around of it.
How many hours does it typically take to complete a track from start to finish?
Maztek: The creative part can take even just few ours or one day then there is the engineering mixing part which I hate and that takes even months.
What do you listen to in your free time?
Maztek: Everything but pop music, mostly electronic or hip hop
What advice would you give to new producers?
Maztek: Do your own thing do not follow trends you will get lost, never lose your inner creative instinct, learn the technical part but do not turn mad when something does not sound like someone else’s tune, you will not get out of it. Be yourself.
What are your favourite techniques and plugins for processing bass/mids?
Maztek: I actually make a bass sound then I split it into sub, mids and highs, if the sub does not work I write a new one, then I process the mids & highs with layers or fx channels, depending on the sound, Trash 2 is usually there.
What plugins do you typically use on your drum buss and why?
Maztek: I have separate busses for kicks snares and hats, I mostly use EQ a transient shaper and an FX channel in send to create snares tails. I use stereo controller for the Kicks and Snares and EQ and FX channel with distortion in some cases for some hats.
What do you find the most challenging part of producing?
Maztek: The mix down.
If you could choose a dream collaboration, who would it be with and why?
Maztek: Noisia because they are unique but also Audio or Ed rush because I respect them and Black Sun Empire to make something different, Mefjus because he is a monster and also Phace
What projects are you working on currently and where would you like to progress to in 12 months time?
Maztek: I was working on an album but I decided to split it into different Eps, in 12 months I would like to release all these new material I’ve been working for the last 2 years. And I would like to make some new bangers or collaborations with the artists mentioned above.
A look inside the MAZTEK studio…