High Five: Hyetal
- Words: James Eaton
After spending enough time with the radiant style of bass-focused electronic music put forth by Bristolian producer Hyetal (a.k.a. David Corney), it's easy to hear that his artistic vision owes a bit to the sounds of the '80s. On his excellent sophomore LP, Modern Worship, he digs deeper though, exploring more of his love for raw drums and thick atmosphere while somehow maintaining hints of that signature neon glow. Clearly, Corney's latest productions are influenced by more than just a single bygone era of music, so we were curious to find out exactly which tunes had a hand in shaping his creative process this time around. He came back to us with a list called "Five Record Shop Finds that Influenced Modern Worship," effectively proving that there's plenty more than just twinkling synths and vintage drum machines at work in the music of Hyetal.
Devo "Big Mess"
I went through a few phases of falling out of love with making electronic music whilst writing my album. The break-up would normally only last for a couple of weeks, and when I sat down to write something, it usually started off sounding quite a bit like Devo. I guess with those tracks I was trying to make something with a similar mix of aggression and playfulness; offsetting moods like that became one of the themes for the album. I picked up Freedom of Choice and then Oh, No! It's Devo a few months after. They’ve both had a lot of play over the last year.
Outkast "Red Velvet"
Outkast was one of my favorite rap groups as a kid. I started listening to Stankonia again whilst writing after I found a really cheap copy [of the album]. I'd forgotten about the whole second half, which is probably when it's at its weirdest point. It's really amazing and inspiring when albums like that manage to cross over into the pop world with such a strong identity. [Outkast's] production has always been a big influence on me.
Originally, I wanted to play live drums on the track "Forefathers" from my album. Neu! was the inspiration for that. I picked up Neu 2 a couple of years ago and didn't get into it at first, but when I gave it another go, it really clicked for me. The acoustic drum stuff didn't work out in the end, but it's probably for the best. I would have never been able to make it sound as good as this.
Severed Heads "Dead Eyes Opened"
I was staying with some friends in London a couple of years ago who took me to a club night called Word Unknown where they pretty much just played old '80s dance records all night. I'd been picking up bits of EBM-ish stuff for a while, but that evening definitely made me dig for more. I got into Severed Heads pretty soon after that. A lot the drum sounds on my record are pretty raw drum machines; this era of production had quite a big influence on that.
Haruomi Hosono "Gaplus"
It'll take me a while to run out of Yellow Magic Orchestra-related projects to listen to. I've been a fan for a while, but it's always great when I come across an album that I haven't heard before. I love [Haruomi Hosono's Video Game Music]. The drums are amazing, as are the sort of motorik beat and the videogame synths. It's probably pretty obvious where I've tried to rip that off on my album.
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