How I Made: Skream on his ‘The Attention Deficit’ EP

Skream, Jackmaster and Jansons reveal how their collaborative EP came together

17.10.22 Words by: Billy Ward

In this feature on Dummy, we’re asking artists to drill down into how exactly they make their music. We’re looking to hone in on the processes, equipment and locations they made their sounds in, and following Paris-via-London producer, vocalist and label head Daniel Ness, we sit down with legendary producer Skream. The Croydon-hailing trailblazer – real name Ollie Jones – is one of the UK’s most iconic selectors and was an early and influential exponent of the dubstep genre. Since releasing his acclaimed debut full-length album ‘Skream!’ in 2006, Jones has helped to build the foundations of London’s dubstep scene and has spent the last decade transitioning from musical wonder-kid to veteran instrumentalist. Earlier this year, Skream put out his collaborative EP ‘The Attention Deficit’ featuring fellow producers Jackmaster and Jansons. To find out more about how the record was created, we asked the trio a few questions about their creative process. 

Where was the project made?

Skream: “The project was made across three different studios.”

Jackmaster: “Devon Analogue Studios.”

Jansons: “My North London studio.”

What software or hardware did you use to produce the album?

Skream: “The Attention Deficit Track’ was made in Devon Analogue Studios with Jackmaster, using a Syncussion SY-1M, TR-909 and an acapella. Jansons’ track was at his studio in North London, and that was made using a JX-03, a Juno and an SE-02 Studio Electronics. Then ‘Floral’ was made at home in Croydon using the Sub 37 on the bass and a lot of samples.”

Jackmaster: “Roland TR909, Ableton.”

Jansons: “We used Logic Pro X with a mixture of hardware and softs synths, Roland SE-02 and the OB-6 for hardware and U-he Diva and Arturia for Soft Synths.”

What are your favourite tracks on the record and why?

Skream: “I don’t have a favourite. The Jansons one has that sort of Krystal Klear vibe – it was an unexpected banger. ‘Attention Deficit’ has been one of the biggest club tracks of the last three years, while ‘Floral’ is very much me and what I’m doing now.”

Jackmaster: “The Attention Deficit Track. Because it was the first tune I ever finished and it was with my best mate!”

Jansons: “I think the whole EP is diverse in sound and mood which collectively makes a great package.”

Were there ever any difficult moments working on the record?

Skream: “The only difficult thing was the fact it took so long to come out. It took the best part of three years for it to come out due to Covid among other things. It wasn’t anyone’s fault, it was just life.”

Jackmaster: “Yeah mostly me being inpatient with Ollie and fighting over whether we should be using Ableton or Fruityloops haha.”

Jansons: “The record we worked on flowed really well, combining both our techniques we use from our producing through the years.”

How did you overcome those moments?

Jackmaster: “Deep meditation and yoga.”

Could you talk through some of your main musical inspirations?

Skream: “The main ones would be the likes of Artwork, El-B, Wookie, and people like that. But also Arctic Monkeys strangely as I’m a real indie head.”

Jackmaster: “Prince, Drexciya, Lory D, Dance Mania and Rubadub.”

Jansons: “For this track we inspired by old 80’s synth tracks and italo disco records.”

How does this project differ from your other work? 

Skream: “Well it’s actually been released for a start. It’s also been a long time since I’ve been able to represent my full range across one EP. I haven’t been able to do that since the Skreamizm series.”

Jansons: “A lot more synths, melodic focused, not just a straight up club track.”

Stream Skream’s ‘The Attention Deficit EP’ below:

Read next: How I Made: London on producing Rema’s chart-topping ‘Rave & Roses’ album

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