BC talk you through recreating one of the standout tracks and tour opener from Spirit, soon to be included in the set list......
Tempo - It's kinda important
"As we've mentioned before, we always start with syncing the tempo. We generally run a click track through the entire song to make sure we get it as close as possible. If it's even a few points out you'll soon find things running out of time so it's worth the 10 minutes getting this right. Then you can run the songs in parrallel to make sure you have the right sections in the right place for the right amount of bars etc. Going Backwards comes in around 97bpm."
All the right notes, ABSOLUTELY necessarily in the right order
"As soon as we're happy with the tempo, we map out all the movements. The verses, bridge, the chorus and the middle 8 (if there is one). It's always useful to have a few versions of the track to be able to hear different parts clearly. What you do have to be careful of is that they haven't transposed the song for live performance! Which happens quite a lot with Depeche's live versions. Going backwards is in F# on both the album and when performed live. One thing that's sure to piss Devotees off is if you can't even get the riffs right."
Bong!...or bang as the case may be.
"The most time consuming part of most tracks is replicating the percussion. We're not going to lie. This is fairly painful. As Going Backwards progresses there are numerous changes to the hi-hat movements and surrounding percussion. Once written, some of this can simply be copied and pasted for the specific section. Such as the chorus on GB. Other parts are contactly changing or dropping out so it's a case of donning your favourite headphones and listening hard. Not only that, you'll also find that specific sections are designated to a particular point in the stereo landscape, so get ready to pan your hearts out."
Your own personal remix
"As we program all songs from scratch, this allows us to mix and match what we feel are the best versions of a song into something unique. It may be part of a remix or another song or we may take some liberties and just write what we feel will make the track different. The most noticable track we previously did this on was Photographic where we took samples from Photograph of You and Fly on the Windscreen and then wrote a middle 8 from scratch. On Going Backwards we've extended the intro and written an electronic arpeggio at the end. Will it work? We'll only know that after we've debuted the song at the Box on the 8th July."
Let's hear that there Gee-taw
"The guitar has become more and more prevalent over the last 30 years and it's one of the few things we actually sample. Fortunately Steve plays so it's a case of getting in the studio and experimenting with a few fx until we have something close. There are a few regulars in the tool box when it comes to Depeche. Slide, tremelo and a bluesy amp generally get's us in the ball park but for Backwards it's all fairly simple case of getting the right amp and then breaking the guitar into performable sections. Sore fingers are generally a given."
It's all in the mix
"Once we're happy with the component parts, the synth sounds, the samples and the arrangement it's time for the mix. This in itself is a couple of days work to get the levels on all tracks working together and furthermore sounding dynamic. It's all in the ear of the beholder so you really have to go with your gut for what you think sounds right. Spirit is a strange beast in the mix section and Going Backwards is no exception. There's a few piano chords on the chorus' that are barely audible and a bass line that mimics the guitar strumming pattern that you have to listen really close to hear."
Are you happy with it?
"Seeing as it's track we weren't going to program, it's sounding pretty shit hot at this moment. Another mix or two and we should have a great opener to add to the sets."
Going Backwards will receive it's debut 08/07/2017 at the Box in Crewe......unless things go horribly wrong!