Release interview with Dytone, Andy Gribben and Alex Hackett
How have you guys met?
Dytone – Andy and I have been friends for a few years now after discovering each other’s music and being part of a close group of UK producers. We have met a few times and love that we share the same interests in house music! Ever since then we have wanted to collab but haven’t found the right track, until now. As for Alex, he got in touch a while back, sending over some ideas for songs he had written. I instantly loved his voice and wanted to work with him.
Alex Hackett – Andy and myself go way back, working on a track which was released in 2017. We’ve kept in contact since then and had always planned to do a follow up. I didn’t actually know Ben personally at all until the ‘4am Calls’ track; I was a massive fan of his Dytone project, regularly listening to ‘Everything’ and ‘I Wanna Know (remix)’ so it’s a little surreal to have a track with him.
Can you tell listeners a bit about what it was like to collaborate with each other?
Dytone – It was such a great experience. Our workflows all seemed to work together so well. We all could feed off each other’s energy and ideas. We all had an equal say in the direction of the track, which is what made it such a great experience and make the track something we are all proud of.
Alex Hackett – It was super easy! As Ben has said, we all had the same direction with the track so any ideas that were suggested seemed to work straight away. It’s not always like that when collaborating on music so getting this track released feels extra special.
Andy Gribben – I have collaborated with both Alex and Ben previously, unfortunately nothing had worked out with Ben until this track. Everything worked so well during the working stages of the song, it was the perfect track for us, and thoroughly enjoyed the whole process of making this banger.
What inspired you to make “4am Calls”?
Dytone – Andy and I had been wanting to work on a collaboration for a few years. Having worked on many ideas in the past, we never made anything that clicked between us. As soon as I heard Alex’s idea for the vocals I came up with a small idea which I felt could work great with Andy’s sound. We jumped on it straight away!
Alex Hackett – Feel I could write a whole novel to answer this question so I’ll do my best to keep it brief. Firstly, I want to say, the song isn’t meant to be too deep – more fun. I want to set the scene by taking you on a night out, you might be slightly intoxicated and you think you’ve found the one. The verses and pre-chorus are that lead up, the suspense, not knowing if the other person likes you back whereas the chorus is that release.
I think the best thing about the lyrics is we never really get to find out if anything happens – leave it up to the listener to make up their mind.
Where do you guys get your creativity? What activates you to make music?
Dytone – Usually listening to fresh tracks on Spotify. It helps to spark new ideas. As well as this, going to live gigs. I have missed that a lot and it really helps to give a feel of what works well in a live situation.
Andy Gribben – I think just sitting down and trying to use my emotions to direct the composition and sound design always sparks creativity, I can get lost in this world of chords and emotions very easily! The thought of someone listening to my music and having different depths of feelings and emotions is such a motivator for me.. I love the strength music has to bring people together no matter who you are!
Alex Hackett – I’ve been doing music from such a young age that it almost feels ingrained in my life. It’s like all the songs are inside me, I just have to find a way of getting them out (if that makes any sense). It just feels amazing to be creating something that has never been made before in the universe – that’s all the inspiration I need.
What is the weirdest sample you’ve ever used in a track?
Dytone – In an idea that I eventually threw away I used a fart sample to accompany a bass haha. With a bit of EQ and distortion it created a gritty bass hahaha.
Andy Gribben – So I use this sample a lot, it’s the sound of an old style microwave whirling and the ding when it’s done. This sound is actually in several of my releases. I find it so fun to use!
Alex Hackett – Seeing as I’m more of a writer and singer, not a producer, thinking of a weird sample is hard. I’d probably have to say the opening of a coke can – which I used in a demo as a snare before a drop.
When everything opens up again, what is the first track you want to hear in the club?
Dytone – I would have to say Jay Pryor – Say Something. The huge break in that track would sound INSANE in a club.
Andy Gribben – Good question, so many songs. One I would love to hear is ‘BYOR – Keep On Dancin’, the energy in this track would go crazy in the club!
Alex Hackett – This is so tough! So many to choose from. I’d have to say “SHM – Don’t You Worry Child”. Everybody knows it and it would be such a vibe.
Imagine you are in a club at 4am, what drink do you order for you and your friends?
Dytone – My go to has to be Jager Bombs haha
Andy Gribben – At that time, it’s gotta be tequila shots
Alex Hackett – Probably shots, keep the party going.
What studio moment will you remember forever?
Dytone – I remember being in a studio with some of my college friends. I played ‘Everything’ to them for the first time and they loved it. I will never forget that feeling.
Andy Gribben – Hmm, that’s a tough one. One that always sticks in my mind is the moment I received and played back Alex’s vocals for our collaboration ‘Feels Right’ back in 2017. I remember feeling so excited and happy with how the track was going to turn out. Good times!
Alex Hackett – Slightly unrelated to working with Ben and Andy but it would have to be one of my studio days in Nashville. As they say Nashville is ‘music city’ and I’ve never felt more at home there. I remember having a song we’d written pitched to ‘Dan & Shay’ and they loved it, that was amazing.
Are you guys planning to do more collabs?
While we were working on 4am calls, we actually had a few ideas for some more tracks between the 3 of us. So, hopefully in the future we can finish those and put them out!
Get ‘4am Calls’ here