In our new video series The Breakdown, we shoot artists and producers in the studio showing us the gear and techniques behind some of their best tracks.
For this edition, we packed up our video cameras and went on a raid to Danny Byrd's studio, where he showed us how he made the bassline for his latest single, Selecta ft. D Double E, and explained how he arranges and mixes his music.
Danny also opened up about the one record from musical history he wishes he'd produced: Dr. Dre's 2001 hip-hop classic The Chronic. Speaking about the album's impact, Danny said: "it changed the game in terms of production. It was the loudest master that'd ever come out at the time."
"What I love about it is the punch, and the mono compatibility. If you mono those tracks they don't collapse at all. It really makes me think about that in my tracks - when I press mono I want them to hold up like those tracks do. I think that's the key to a lot of punch."
"SSL desks, and recording to tape... I miss that in music now. In-the-box is great, but nothing's going to compare to that kind of vibe."
Danny Byrd on his API 2500 bus compressor
Danny also showed us the most prized piece of gear in his home studio, his API 2500 bus compressor. “My favourite bit of kit in the studio is my API 2500 bus compressor. I read up on these and this was actually one of the first bits of hardware that I bought." he said.
"Some people seem to use them for their drum bus and an SSL for their mix bus, some do it the other way. I thought I’d have it for both, so I bought two.
"They’re not that cheap and I ended up selling one because it seemed a bit extreme to have it on both busses. This is amazing for having over your master bus for more jungle-style tracks. It doesn’t really work for clean drum & bass tracks but for something a little bit more retro it’s great.”
Danny Byrd and D Double E’s new single Selecta is out now via Ministry Of Sound.