You don’t become a leading figure on France’s electronic music scene if your production skills aren’t up to snuff, so Fakear must be doing something right. Over the past five years he’s racked up millions of streams and seen his debut album, 2016’s Animal, certified gold, also finding the time to tour the world and produce a track for M.I.A.
As he prepares to launch his second long player, All Glows, on Friday, we asked Fakear to name the five most important things he’s learned about music production.
1. You need to disconnect
“To me, when it comes to music, I need to isolate and disconnect from all human contact. This way, I can escape all expectations, and avoid my brain screaming ‘this is so cool; this gonna blow their minds; that will be huge during your set’. I just need to be honest and listen to my feelings.”
2. Trust yourself
“It's a tricky one, but for a long time I compared myself to others producers I like - others’ stuff I found cool. Seems natural. But it's the best way to screw everything up. My identity and my feelings are unique, and when I started to trust my feelings, I began to make better music, and today Fakear sounds like Fakear, and no one else. You can't avoid influence and inspiration, but it must come naturally - you must not think about it.”
3. Give yourself some boundaries
“If you put me in a room with all the best gear on the planet, I don’t think I’d be able to create any music. Too many choices to make - even there I would pick up just one or two machines and start creating with those. I made my greatest tracks with very limited gear - often a one-octave keyboard and some shitty headphones. Once again, it's the energy you put in it that matters, not the quality of your materials.”
4. Take your time
“Don't be too demanding with yourself. When I started music production, I wanted to have the best sound, right away. I wanted to know all the tips to make this sound like some great producer I listen to... but techniques come with time. I realised that it was more important for me to be honest with my feelings than to have great technique. There always will be someone with better skills, but no one can feel what you feel.”
5. Get out of your comfort zone
“And the last one. When I started becoming successful in France, everyone told me ‘amazing, you have a very unique sound, etc’ and it was easy at this point to give up my search and be just as the public sees me. I could make other Fakear albums with the same sound, as everyone seems to be happy with it. But it's not being honest. Life is about adventures, risks, fighting our fears. Art is the same. When you find the sound you're comfortable with, break it down and build a new one. Over and over again. This way you're sure to stay honest and true. It’s not easy (my manager was pushing me for a year to do it) but the reward is great. You feel alive!”