I am a producer, songwriter, mix engineer and Keyboard player based in London, UK. Specialising in Electronic music, I've toured and recorded with Schiller, Scott Quinn, Majestic, Aelius and Control-S, plus toured the world as a Playback Tech for Shawn Mendes, Dua Lipa, M83, Foals, Jonas Blue, Jamie Woon and many more.
I've worked professionally as a session musician & producer for 8 years, touring the world in technical roles for many acts and playing Keyboard & Guitar for German electronic act, Schiller since 2013.
My strengths in the studio include composing Keyboard, Bass and Guitar parts, arrangement, vocal production (including comping and tuning), sound design, and mixing.
I will work with you to achieve the sound you are looking for, whether it be providing a keyboard or guitar part that sounds like your favourite band, making a sound for a part you've already created, or arranging, mixing or conceptualizing your idea. While my expertise lies mostly within Electronic music, I listen to and can take examples from many different genres.
I can work in Ableton Live, Logic Pro X, or Pro Tools - whichever suits your project best. I have a collection of instruments, plugins and processors to bring your idea to life and will work tirelessly to give you the outcome you want.
I'd love to hear about your project. Click the 'Contact' button above to get in touch.
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Interview with Martin Roberts
Q: Tell us about a project you worked on you are especially proud of and why. What was your role?
A: My band Aelius is something I'm really proud of. I wrote, recorded, programmed, arranged, mixed and mastered everything on the album with my partner Lee Tyler, and the whole album is something I really enjoyed doing and something I'm still proud of to this day. It's often easy to listen to a mix way after the fact and want to change things, but I can honestly say there's nothing I'd change about the mix of that album.
Q: Analog or digital and why?
A: Both! I really love the sound of analog, but the convenience and flexibility of digital is very useful. For a while, I had a Juno 60 which I loved the sound of. I'd record multiple takes of it so I could go back to different versions later, but that still didn't give me the flexibility I needed if I wanted to change a part. A plugin emulator of the Juno 60 was perfect, as it sounded very close (and sounds identical with some additional processing) but also gave me the ability to change things later on without having to re-record the entire part. That's just one example.
Q: What questions do you ask prospective clients?
A: What are you trying to achieve with this song/project? What bands do you listen to and take inspiration from? In your ideal world, who would play/mix this if you could hire anyone?
Q: What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?
A: Have a clear idea of what you'd like your project to sound like. Create a Spotify playlist of reference tracks and tell me clearly what you like about each track - whether it be "I like the synth sound in song x" or "I love the arrangement of song y". Communication and clear references are key!
Q: If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?
A: Midi Controller, Electric Guitar, Laptop, Audio Interface, Headphones.
Q: What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
A: I started my journey in music at the age of 9 when I started DJing. I then learnt Piano at 12 and taught myself guitar when I was 14. The next natural progression for me was songwriting and production, and I produced my first song at the age of 16. While at University I met Lee Tyler, who became my long-time collaborator and we started a production outfit, making House & Garage. We quickly got radio support and went on to sign with Riddler Records and later start our own label imprint, In-Ctrl Recordings. In 2012, we took a new direction and started a band project - Aelius, focussing on Electronic and Post- Rock styles. We later released our debut album, "Young Hearts, Fragile Minds". In 2013, I started my career in live music with my first role as Keyboard player for German electronic act, Schiller. I then completed further ours with Schiller in 2014, 2017, and 2018 plus special performances and recordings for later DVD and album releases, including "Symphonia" which achieved Gold Status in Germany. Since my time in live music, I have worked with some incredible acts and artists who continue to inspire me. Now, focussing more on my studio work I am proud to be working with some amazing instrumentalists and producers on some exciting material.
Q: Can you share one music production tip?
A: Perfection doesn't make perfect. I love all the details of things that aren't perfect. Using plugins or hardware to mess with a sound and make it not sound perfect gives the ear something to pick up on and stand out.
Q: What type of music do you usually work on?
A: I have many projects that I'm involved in ranging from Electronic to Post Rock. I have a long history in UK dance music, but I enjoy making and creating almost anything.
Q: What's your typical work process?
A: This really depends on a case by case basis. If I'm hired to play keyboards for someone, I will listen to their idea then listen to their references and ask them questions about what they want to achieve. After that, I will evaluate everything and begin conceptualizing ideas based on all the information I have.
Q: Tell us about your studio setup.
A: I have a small home studio filled with instruments and "toys" I'm passionate about and have worked to build my dream setup. The hub of my studio is my Fender Rhodes MkII and Dave Smith Prophet Rev2. This is where I conceptualise most of my ideas. I also have a Moog Voyager, Fender Telecaster Custom, Revox Reel-to-Reel Tape machine, and a huge collection of plugins for both creation and processing.
Q: What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?
A: M83 are one of my favourite bands. I love their approach to sound design and arrangement, and how each of their albums is very different from the last. I also listen to a lot of different genres and bands including The Album Leaf, This Will Destroy You, Olafur Arnalds, Nils Frahm, Max Richter, Tame Impala, Caribou, Tourist, and so many more. I also listen to a lot of 90's R&B, Hip Hop, House, Garage, Pop, and really anything that catches my ear.