Interview with Richard Durand

The other week we sat down for a conversation with Richard Durand regarding his new album Wide Awake.

Interview with Richard Durand Photo by Black Hole Recordings

Firstly Richard why did you pick ‘Wide Awake’ as the title track for the album?
I did it the same way as I did with the last album. I thought it would be a good idea to have the title of the main single for the album too. Luckily it worked pretty well and was a good fit!

What was the first track that you started and the last track that you finished for it?
The first one was ‘Airwell’. That was started (and finished!) on a plane trip last summer. The track I finished last just happens to be the last track on the album; ‘Disturbed’! Entirely coincidental I assure you!

If you had to sum up the album in three words what would they be?
Innovative, fresh and rougher!

Did you find it an easier, harder or comparable experience to making ‘Always the Sun’?
Comparable. I started with a blank canvas, just like the last time. I never really give to much thought to the direction it should go. I’m pretty easy about things like that and just believe that where it ends is where it should be! I did want it to take a different route, have a different feel than the ISOS compilation though. I didn’t want my album to have the same vibe so the logical thing to do was to (as I said before) roughen things up a bit!

I always like to have tracks that have dominating vocals on there too. Ones that I think really ‘speak’. I think that they are important for any album… They give it a personal touch.

What was the trickiest track on the album to complete?
I think that ‘Wide Awake’ took the longest. The vocals were so strong so it took me quite a while, relatively speaking that is, to get the sound right.

How long was the album making process from start to completion?
I started at the end of the summer and finished this January.

Sounds like it was a relatively smooth process all in all?
Yeah, I’d say so. Not too many tortured artistic moments along the way, which can only be a good thing!

How did you go about picking the vocalists to work with on the album?
That is different every time, you know. Sometimes you work together with a vocalist from a different country and you keep sending each other what you’ve come up with until you’re both happy. Then other times you spend time in the studio with someone, which is what Kash and I did.

Was there anyone that you wanted to work with on this album, but for one reason or another were unable to?
No, haha, but to be really honest, I wouldn’t have told you if there was!

Appreciate the honesty! Now what was the thinking behind the inclusion of your remix of Andain’s ‘Everything From Me’ on there?
I was asked to do the remix and loved the vocals so much that I asked if I could put it on my album too. I was psyched when Andain said I could. That was a good day!

There are also some more unusual tracks on the album like housey-electro number ‘Robotic’ and Kash super-catchy vocal on ‘Explode’. How did they come about?
I made ‘Robotic’ while I was on my way to Australia. I don’t really know how I pulled it off but it has proven to be a great one for the dance floor! Kash and I spent a day in the studio together. He came from London for the day. My favourite aspect of this track is that the vocals and the melody run perfectly parallel to one another.

Finally Richard was there one track above any other that you thought “I can’t wait to play that out in a club!”?
Haha, yep! I’ve got to say that's ‘Real Deal’. That one always really gets a party started!!!

Mathias Haegglund Code Collector, Globetrotter, and Occasional Gamer.

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