American-based music producer and saxophone player SoDown paired up with Denver-native Bass Physics to create this heavy release called “Tension.” The track incorporates styles and flows like heavy dubstep bass, saxophone, guitar, and hip-hop. This single touches on so many musical elements all in one song, it’s hard not to like it no matter what genre you are into.
“‘Tension” reflects on the current state of the world with social media, climate change, political polarization, inequality, and the impacts of the virus. To us, this tune signifies a realization of the need for change and the motivation to take action.” – SoDown & Bass Physics
Ehren River Wright, better known as SoDown, has a unique style that truly makes him stand out from others. So much so that he has created 3 different versions of his music, so heavy, SoGroovy, and SoChill. From the stages at Red Rocks, Coachella, Electric Forest, Global Dance, and Sonic Bloom, his style and production are only destined for exponential growth.
Arja Adair, who goes by Bass Physics is the other producer on this track who helped make it what it is. His melodic bass, electronic rock, soulful funk, and hip-hop style shine through perfectly in this track. Taking his live music sounds to another level, he along with SoDown is on a path to do great things for live electronic music.
After hearing this heavy work of art I had to reach out the both of them to see what they used in the studio to make this single come to life. As you will see below, a ton of plugins and instruments were used. Now let’s dive into it with a How It Was Made feature.
We used Ableton Live and various VST plug-ins. This was a fairly complex project, with 198 tracks total. It was a pain to mix and master, but we got it sounding great!
Serum of course, because it’s an absolute ANIMAL!!! So diverse, so clean, so crisp and so mean. We love it.
Span is an awesome spectral analyzer that helps to see how everything is sitting in the mix, as well as the overall tonality of the master. We used this throughout the entirety of writing, mixing as we produced, to ensure we were on track to have a great-sounding song.
Saturn is an awesome distortion plug-in. We used it in “Tension” for bass design and some instrumental warming.
Similar to Saturn, decapitator is a Distortion plug-in which you can really push to the limit and create “Tension.” We used it on instruments, vocals, bass and drums. One of our favorites for sure.
Littlealterboy is a pitch modulation plug-in that is really cool for changing the pitch and tonality of a sound. We used it on Vox in this tune, but it’s really great for lots of different experimental applications
Soothe2 helps take away some gnarly frequencies that may destroy some ears on big systems. We used it on the Aux drum group to tame some piercing freqz.
We used FREECLIP to clip the bass group and glue everything together so its nice and FAATTTTTTT.
Black box is a new plug-in to me, really enjoying experimenting with it. It’s an analog modeling distortion plug-in. We used it on a few basses.
Vital is a new synth on the block, we used it to make some basses that bounce like a pogo stick from the future.
CLA-76 is an awesome glue compressor to put on busses and glue similar sounds together. Great for instruments, pads, and vocals.
Spectre is a spectral awesome for adding some nice lacking frequencies to the mix. We used it to add some buttery hi’s to the instrument group.
Kramer tape gives a nice warm tape emulation. We used it to compress the instruments together and give them a little grit.
Sax, of course. It’s pretty simple really, you blow into it and it makes noise. We used the sax for the horn stabs you hear throughout the song, as well as the sexy sax solo in the middle around 1.30.
15.Taylor 224ce-K DLX Grand Auditorium Acoustic-Electric
We used this beautiful Taylor to pluck the strings and make noise. We recorded it through a Universal Apollo DUO with UAD preamps and processed it further in Ableton. One of our favorite parts of the song is in the middle around 1.45 when the sax and guitar call and respond.