Timbaland’s work-in-progress solo album features “some of the most incredible music that I’ve heard in my life,” says frequent collaborator and producer Federico Vindver.
Discussing his time in the studio with Timbaland, he says “When I work with Tim[baland] there’ll be Timbo, me, two other producers, four different rigs with Ableton, all going into a master computer with Pro Tools.
“Timbo will say ‘I have this really crazy beat’, and one of the other guys will make the bass, and I’ll add some sounds. We jam that way - like a band - and we’re extremely quick because we’ve worked together. Like 30 seconds - in 30 seconds everybody has added their parts and you have a track.”
Speaking to MusicRadar, Vindver also recalls his recent time in the studio with Coldplay, which resulted in Higher Power, the band’s latest single.
“Chris [Martin] already had that,” he says. “He played it for me and he said ‘Can you add something to it?’ I started adding sounds and the main hook sound was one of the sounds that I added. I think that informed him on some of the writing, and of course Max Martin was super-involved on that.”
Elaborating on his Coldplay sessions - which are set to see the light of day on their as-yet-untitled new album - Vindver says: “I created about 150 sounds that were my interpretation of ‘Coldplay sounds’ - pianos, guitars, effects chains. When you have someone as creative as Chris [Martin] sometimes I’d play one note and he’d say ‘keep that’ and he’d grab his guitar and write an amazing song on top of it.”
Vindver has also been sharing his thoughts on working with Timbaland on the new Justin Timberlake record, explaining: “We’d be in the studio with Justin Timberlake and a lot of times it’s just me going through patches and they’re like ‘oh, that’s amazing’. It’s the sound that people react to. But it’s got to have playability, too. It has to be designed in a way that can be expressive. Because I’m a pianist I want to be able to feel how I feel when I’m playing the piano.”
With Kanye West, though, Vindver says that the creative process is very different: “He doesn’t like any kind of gimmicks on anything. He likes that real, raw thing. With him it was more like ‘you’ve got this beat and it’s all electronic, but I want to hear that with horns. Everything has to be a horn.’ He’ll throw those curveballs at you and you have to find all these horn players and record that… Or choirs… It changes a lot. But it’s fun. I like having fun. That’s why we do this.”