Korg magazine

Liam Howlett interviewed by Korg mag in winter 2001

Korg magazine recently interviewed Liam Howlett, trying to get something out of him about Korg equipment. That mission kind of failed, but the interview is quite funny to read. They got an excerpt of it on the official korg site on www.korg.co.uk/news/displayarticle.asp?articleId=53, but I have typed out the full thing for you here. thanks to Matthew Franklin @ standtogether mag.

"In the middle of recording a new album with Prodigy, Liam Howlett took time out his busy schedule to speak exclusively to Korg magazine. True to form, Liam was reticent but entertaining nonetheless...

Liam Howlett morphed his Hip Hop background with the sounds of acid music at the end of the 80's to form Prodigy in 1990. After underground success with the single What Evil Lurks the band signed to XL Records and had their first commercial success with the release of the rave novelty single Charly in 1991. Prodigy's sound settled into a completely individual groove, taking elements fromevery genre through the release of two albums, The Prodigy Experience and Music for the Jilted generation. But it was The Fat of The Land album and the singles FirestarterSMBU and Breathe that propelled The Prodigy to international megastars. They achieved the rare UK feat of conquesring the States on their way to selling trillions of records worldwide.*

Liam Howlett, always the driving and creative force, is understandably a difficult man to track down and rarely gives interviews these days so this is indeed a unique insight into his progress on the long-awaited next album and his use of Korg gear.

Korg: Its been a while since we heard anything from the Prodigy. What are you up to now? Are you working on new material? A new album, possibly?

Liam: Yeah, the new album will be out next year. All the writing started a few months back.

Korg: What is the current line-up of the group? Does Maxim's solo album mean he's left the Prodigy?

Liam: It's the same line-up as last year, just minus Leeroy. maxim has not left the band, Leeroy is the only person who has left.

Korg: How much are the other members involved in the creative process?

Liam: Musically not a lot, but vocally a lot.

Korg: Where do you record your music?

Liam: Technology now allows me to write music anywhere.

Korg: How will your new music fit into today's dance music scene, which has changed a lot since the days of Jilted Generation and Firestarter? Have you been influenced by any of the new stuff, eg. UK garage, Basement Jaxx, etc?

Liam: First of all, I dont believe our band ever fitted into the dance scene. Tracks like Breathe, Firestarter and Poison - I wasn't aware of them being from any particular scene. I don't even like dance music any more, but a few good songs still get written that are able to break out and stand in their own right. So the new album won't be trying to conform to any particular sound.

Korg: How do you usually go about writing a tune and what gear do you use?

Liam: Class A and the sampler is my instrument.

Korg: You've recently been using a KM2 mixer, an Electribe ER-1, ES-1 and EM-1. What are your impressions of this kit?

Liam: I haven't checked the mixer yet, but the ER-1 resembles 70s and 80s analogue drum sounds, which is what I like.

Korg: Tell us what you think about each of the above pieces of kit. What features do you like especially? What have you been using each piece of kit for? Would you use any of them on stage, as you seem to be very hands-on when you perform live?

Liam: I've used the ES-1 on stage and I've used the ER-1 on a couple of tracks on the new album. The ER-1 doesnt require much processing or EQing - it sounds f**king great straight out of the box.

Korg: Do you use any other Korg gear currently?If so, what is it and what do you like about it?

Liam: The only other Korg gear I use, which is still one of my favourite keyboards, is the MS20.

Korg: If you could design your ultimate piece of gear for Korg, what would it be?

Liam: A lawnmower to mow my Korg grass!"

Korg magazine, Winter 2001

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