‘ESSENTIALS’ is our exciting new editorial series that sees us talk to producers, label heads, engineers and every day industry folk about their five favourite singles, albums, studio gear, and live gear. To kick things off we brought in Soundspace regular Tom Ferry to give us his top five pieces of tech he uses when crafting those mind bending, emotionally intact harmonies.
DAWs are the heart of most producers studios these days and finding one you work the most comfortably in is vital. I’ve tried a few over the years and ableton suits my style best as I can pump out ideas really quickly and the layout is very fluid. Also the native plugins are great and the native sound library is a lot of fun too.
2. Waves SSL Buss Compressor
It’s not the most precise compressor as it has only a small number of set parameters but it always sounds great on buss channels and single instruments. I usually have this plugin on the drum buss, bass buss and master output for the mastering process too.
3. Maag EQ4
Like the SSL compressor this goes on every one of my buss channels. The air band adds amazing clarity while the sub band makes everything thick and tight. Sounds amazing on bass and drums and again always has a part in my master chain. I only discovered this plugin a few months ago and now I don’t know how I got by without it.
4. Izotope Imager
I was ignorant for quite a while as to how important mixing your stereo field can be. I find the imager plug from Izotopes Ozone package is the best as it is so flexible and you can split the signal into 4 frequency bands. The real time vectorscope visualiser is great too.
5. Korg M1
The Korg M1 has been used on so many house tracks over the years it is such an iconic sound. Now that the UK house scene is turning back and getting influences of early house music and UK garage, the M1 is being used more and more. I just use it as I do everything else but while thinking of what to put in this list I realised I haven’t made any Tom Ferry tracks that don’t have at least 2 or 3 Korg M1 elements in there. It has a massive reputation for a reason.
Listen to ‘Tom Ferry – All Nite’ on Soundspace: