EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: 5 Minutes With… Prangman

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Dan Meldrum, aka Prangman, is a self-confessed “drum and bass head” whose ability to blend sounds and textures from contrasting genres has generated a lot of excitement around this upcoming producer from the North East.

Recent appearances at Horizon and Outlook have confirmed his reputation on the festival circuit, while his latest singles – “Far Away” (featuring Lyndsey Murray) and “Chamber” – are wonderful introductions for those not familiar with Prangman’s sound. “Far Away” is a sparse, rhythmic vocal breaks track with alluring overtones of acid jazz and soul, as Lyndsey Murray’s husky vocal phrasing is offset by a cool, understated keyboard progression. “Chamber”, meanwhile, is an altogether grimier, darker track – expertly fusing elements of vintage UK garage, deep house, drum and bass and dubstep into a grooving, snarling track with real attitude.

We caught up with Prangman to hear about his influences, his gear preferences and his fantasy week-long Northumberland Music Festival…

Hi there, how are you and what are you up to today?

Spot-on, thanks! I’ve unfortunately been at work all day, though. I live two lives: one as a financial advisor, the other as a music producer!

For the uninitiated, what’s fresh about Prangman’s sound?

Well, I like to fuse genres to make a sound that’s unique. I produce various genres, such as garage, bassline, techno, house, drum n bass, breaks, disco and experimental music. The Prangman sound is a fusion of elements from every genre I’ve worked in over the years.

What are the 5 albums that have influenced you the most?

Underworld, Everything, Everything
Noisia & Phace, Surface Tension
Hans Zimmer, Inception OST
Most Caylx & Teebee albums
Most things put out by the Hessle Audio crew (Ben UFO, Pangeaa, Pearson Sound, etc.)

What other artists do you really like at the moment and why?

I’m pretty open-minded to lots of new artists within different genres, but I really like bassline and garage artists like Champion, Killjoy and Flava D.

If we gave you the budget to put a Festival line-up together, who would you book and where would you play?

I’d like to find a lovely place in Northumberland in the summer. Maybe a castle or a beach. I’d invite all my favourite producers and DJs from over the years since I started out (15 years ago). That would be a hell of a lot of acts, so it would have to be a week-long party or something!

What are some of the key pieces of gear you use to write your tracks in the studio? Or do you prefer to use software and plug-ins?

I mainly use software and VST plug-ins to produce. I’m using Cubase with various VST synths, samplers, drum machines and live-recorded samples.

Has your arsenal of equipment changed much since you first started?

Definitely. For one thing, my computer now has 4GB RAM instead of 516MB – haha! The evolution of technology has allowed for the production of many amazing VST synths. I’ve enjoyed experimenting with anything I can get my hands on.

Do you prefer playing to an audience or working in the studio?

This is a bit of a double-edged question, really! I enjoy them both. In fact, there’s no better feeling than producing a track in the studio, and then bouncing it down to an MP3 minutes before you’ve got to run out the door to get to the club and test it in your set!

If you weren’t a musician what would you be?

Probably sat at my desk at work. Or maybe running a pub… I grew up in a family pub trade. Who knows, might still do it in the future.

Do you have any information regarding upcoming releases, projects, DJ mixes or collaborations in the pipeline that you would like to tell us about?

My new EP, Chamber, will be out on February 17th via Migration Recordings (Sub-label of NexGen Music), and I’m currently busy on my first album, which is going to be tasty! I’m also currently working with some UK garage and bassline artists (such as Killjoy). I run an event called Sous Sol Projet in Leicester, and it’s our 5th birthday party on the 24th of February – so lots to do there to make sure it’s a really great night.

Prangman’s Chamber EP is out on February 17th via Migration Recordings