Fellow Mellow 808ers,
As 2012 became 2013, the online trap movement began hitting its big stride and slowly started deviating and evolving as more and more producers started coming out of the woodwork. This new crop of producers decided to take a more deconstructed and avant garde approach to their 808-flavoured sounds, removing most of the noisy and uptempo texture of hardstyle/ratchet trap and replacing it with sexy samples and negative space.
One such producer is Harry Torson, or CNTRL as most of you know him, who has been on an absolute rampage for the past 4 months. His new release, the SWAY EP, is a pristine example of what chilled trap music should sound like, and his remix for UFO was recent released as a part of the ITS A TRAP Remix EP alongside the likes of fellow up-and-coming trap talents Ookay and ETC! ETC!.
On top of that, he’s been my go-to artists for luring ladies to the dancefloor when I’ve spun recently, and everytime I do so, there’s always at least 3 or 4 slobbery people coming to the booth begging for his track IDs after they’ve been mixed out.
Oh and heres the kicker – hes fucking 17 years old – so you best keep tabs on him.
- Signed Sincerely, The Worst Guy
- CNTRL – Creeper
- CNTRL – Ghetto Blaster VIP
- CNTRL – Polly
- CNTRL – Spinners
- CNTRL – Straight
- CNTRL – Sway
- CNTRL – Worldie
TWG: Well considering you’re still fit to play for England’s under 18 team, id love to get the full back story on how you found your love for music and producing. Who/what really solidified your tie to music and when did you make the transition from listener to artist?
CNTRL: I’ve been on and off producing for 2 years or so now, not seriously.. just messing around until i was at a festival last summer and it just gave me the inspiration to want to be up on stage dropping bombs; so technically I’ve been seriously producing for about 8 months now. I would also say I’ve always had a huge love for music, I was brought up listening to house music from a very early age because of my dad. I swear my favorite tune when I was like 6 was Robin S – Show me Love.
TWG: Did you play any instruments when you were young or study any musical theory, or has your approach to music arrangement been more DIY?
CNTRL: I played guitar for like 2 weeks when I was a lot younger, but apart from that I’ve figured it all out by myself; with exception to a couple of crappy youtube tutorials on side chaining and compressing that I watched.
TWG: Is there any reason then that chilled trap music has become your chosen production style? As in, are you a close follower of the trending online music industry and chose the genre accordingly, or was it more what came out of you naturally?
CNTRL: A mixture really. I like to make what I feel, but at the same time I like to produce stuff that im really enjoying right now. For example, for those of you that have listened to my “SWAY EP” and heard the track “Polly”, I actually made that when I was 16 way before I’d ever been to my first festival, and was originally made for myself to listen to!
TWG: What kind of stuff are you enjoying right now, and how has your taste in music evolved since you were a kid? are there any producers that you listen to now that you draw a lot of inspiration from?
CNTRL: House music is still a passion of mine and I hope to move onto producing some in the near future. and as for inspirations right now I’ve got to say – Baauer, Flosstradamus, Asap Mob, Shlohmo, Diplo, Gent and Jawns & GTA. these guys are the ones who’s music really gives me the urge to keep producing but then again, any good piece of music can inspire me.
TWG: Whats your primary DAW, and where do you sit in the debate of analog vs software when it comes to production?
CNTRL: My set up is just FL studio on my laptop, I have a Akai MPK Midi which I’ve got out like twice! I can’t really comment on analog vs software because i’ve never really used anything other than software, my current set up does what I need to do but in coming months im hoping to put a studio together which is why im selling my sway ep for the moment.
TWG: Take me through a day in the life of you in production mode. What’s your process for turning imagination into matter, and when/where do you find the most inspirations. Also what’s your cure for mental blocks while producing.
CNTRL: It depends really, due to my age i still have college but whenever im free I get on it or on weekends it’s really as soon as i wake up I normally continue on something (For some reason i always get my inspiration in the early hours of the morning) and to create a track I normally start with a beat then keep adding things to it that im feeling. The thing I love about trap is that it’s constricted to your imagination, you can put pretty much everything over these 808′s. As for mental blocks I produce a different genre of music for a few days then come back to it.
TWG: Yeah I definitely agree that everything sounds amazing over 808s, but there has been a deviation between the jump-up/hardstyle/ratchety trap of flosstradamus (and the like) and the new downtempo/deconstructed/sex-oriented style that you and the likes of Cashmere Cat, Baauer, Ryan Hemsworth, RUNES, etc., have been pioneering. I know that I see much more longevity in the latter, but im wondering where you see the whole movement going in the future?
CNTRL: I just see the genre getting even crazier or even genres within the trap genre, so much different stuff been made
TWG: Btw, completely off topic, your music mixes incredibly with old Janet Jackson
CNTRL: Hahaha, I’ll have to try it!
TWG: I’d love to get a better sense of what the trap scene is like in Manchester, as well as the overall electronic dance music scene. What are the big ‘watering hole’ venues that get the best acts? which artists are really adorned heavily in Manchester at the moment?
CNTRL: Due to my age I’ve still got 5 months until i can go out and see what’s happening but as far as I can see at the moment trap hasn’t taken off massively in Manchester yet, but because we have the warehouse project we regularly have big names coming through dropping lots of trap in their sets so I believe it’ll catch on soon. As for the general music scene, lots of hotspots such as Sankeys and Warehouse Project. Just this sunday we had Otto Knows, Alesso, Sunnery James & Ryan Marciano. As for trap artists I don’t know many, the only one I really know of is DOLĆE (Who im releasing a tune with very soon so keep an eye out!)
TWG: With the release of SWAY, and your feature remix on UFO’s recent release, are you prepping to hit the gas on your production career or are you still looking to finish school first?
CNTRL: Hahaha, no contest on which i’d choose to do! I barely attend college as it is (Normally bunk off to produce) I should have really called it the bunked off EP. I’m trying to keep a balance though, just in case things don’t work out with producing, always good to have a backup!
TWG: Well thats a very mature approach, but at the rate your going I have good faith that you’ll be laughing at the memory of your textbooks soon enough. Do you have anything else you plan on releasing in the next few months, or possible collabs/remixes for us to look out for?
CNTRL: Thanks man I appreciate that! I hope so….. As for collabs I have one coming out very soon with Dolce and a remix of ‘Solace’ by my midnight heart on the way which has a very different vibe compared to what I normally make, got a few different genres mixed up in it
TWG: You gonna put all your productions under the CNTRL moniker or have you thought of using different aliases for separate genres releases?
CNTRL: I think i’m defiantly going to keep this next remix under CNTRL, still undecided about future ones!
TWG: And what does Harry Torson do when he’s not in CNTRL mode, do you have any hobbies outside of music? What do you like to do when you need to relax?
CNTRL: Anything really mate, I love nothing more than a mad party so I wouldn’t call it relaxing! And I also love TV series such as the walking dead, prison break and ridiculousness. If you haven’t seen all three of those series you need to!
TWG: I’m more of a documentary and debate fiend myself, and yeah be sure to expend all that youthful energy you’ve got as much as you can while you have it. How do your parents feel about you producing, do they support your music career?
CNTRL: I love my documentaries too! And yeah they’re supportive, but they primarily worry if it doesn’t work out and I drop out of college with no qualifications, but yeah apart from that they are supportive
TWG: Yeah thats definitely the textbook approach of good parenting, you should consider yourself lucky considering some of the stories I’ve heard. If you could impart yourself some future wisdom to look back upon what would it be? Are there any specific goals you have in mind for your career?
CNTRL: I wish I had seriously started producing when I first started messing around with it all! and I defiantly want to DJ at some big events at some point in my life
TWG: Well your still relatively young, which will give you a good head start considering your already producing at quite a high-caliber. Thanks so much for giving me some of your time and answering my questions, is there anything left you’ve got to say to your fans out there, specifically your Canadian ones?
CNTRL: Hahah yeah, thanks Worst Guy blog!