In the studio with Brock Van Wey

In the studio with Brock Van Wey

Editor’s note: Welcome to the second installment of Headphone Commute’s “In the studio with…” column. Behind this door with the Hello Kitty “Welcome” sign (pictured above) lies the home in which Brock Van Wey (aka bvdub) composes his music… Be sure to check out Brock’s latest release on echospace [detroit] titled Home. Works really well in the background as you read this amazing and very personal narrative, if you ask me… Step right in, as we bring you closer to the world of your favorite artist! Enjoy! ~HC

Lets start at the very beginning. Can you tell us how you got involved in composing, and what was your very first piece of gear?

Actually I composed my very first piece of music when I think I was around 10 or 11, a piece for a trio of violin, viola, and cello. I was playing the violin since I was 5 (and later piano), and after some years found myself becoming bored with just playing things others had composed. It felt very constraining. Plus, although I guess I was supposedly a ‘classical’ musician, I didn’t actually like ‘classical’music as such, and even when I was playing pieces I was supposed to be playing, I was always kind of remixing them in my head, I guess you could say, into the way I thought they should be. So I guess it was natural for that to lead to me composing my own pieces from scratch. I composed several around that time, and throughout the following years a few more for both solo, trio, and quartet, along with a slew of solo piano pieces, as well as a few duets for violin and piano, up until around the time I quit both the violin and piano when I was around 15 or 16. In the last couple years or so from around 13 to 15, I attempted to compose an entire symphony, but never completed it. I was able to compose most of the string parts, but putting it all together with the rest, namely for instruments I had never played, was biting off more than I could chew. But hey, you’ll never know if you don’t try.

I think it was about 1993 or so when I composed my first ever electronic piece, a really weird kind of industrial techno/classical thing (it was supposed to be a melodic trance track, and ended up as some industrial-sounding thing, which was especially weird considering I had never listened to industrial music) with a program that required that you actually write the music out just as you would a physical score (notes and all). It was super taxing and honestly the track wasn’t that great, I remember it was full of weird bell noises and pitched-down bird sounds, but it was quite thrilling to be able to do something electronic on my own from scratch. With that I borrowed a sampler (can’t remember what kind, it was a really basic one), and had bought a Korg Wavestation off a classmate for some shockingly low price like a hundred bucks. Amazing what kind of deals you could get when everyone used drugs and just wanted money fast (haha).

I never really did any other music after that, as I found the whole experience too tiring and time consuming, and I was really frustrated that I couldn’t even come close to translating what was in my head. So I just stuck to DJing and throwing parties for those years. Way down the line I decided to come back to, and this time dedicate myself to, learning to do it properly, after months or even years of constant poking and prodding from one of my best friends, who also went on to spend months teaching me the ins and outs of a lot of hardware and software. My first official bvdub tracks were in 2006 (I had already been DJing under that name for 15 years or so by then), which formed the Strength In Solitude LP on 2600 (Night Drive). Those 6 tracks were the first I ever made (we won’t count that 1993 thing), in the order they were made. Although I still love a lot about those tracks for numerous reasons, you can definitely tell they were made by someone who was sorely ignorant about a shedload of things, especially sound design. They were compressed and limited to holy hell and sonically are about as crisp as a bowl of mashed potatoes someone left out in the rain. But it was really exhilarating to be able to put some of my own emotions to music. It was so liberating. No matter how those tracks ‘sounded,’I will never forget how thrilled I was making them, being able to have that kind of control and freedom, and hearing something be played back, just sitting there listening to little loops for what seemed like hours. I felt like a god. Well, a god who didn’t know what he was doing, but still a god (well, plenty of gods don’t know what they’re doing I guess haha). It was like discovering music all over again. But everything in music is a constant learning process, and I definitely learned a lot from those tracks that I still carry with me to this day.

In the studio with Brock Van Wey 01

How many different studio iterations have you gone through, and what does your final setup look like right now?

It’s gone through several iterations during the years, especially between living in America and China. When I was living in San Francisco it was a lot more complicated and I was constantly trying out new configurations and combinations, but I streamlined it quite heavily when moving back to China. I originally brought with me what I could carry, and had quite a bit more shipped over, but I found that the new environment and ever-looming sense of non-permanency that comes from living in a country that makes you re-apply every 11 months to even be able to live here caused me to get rid of a lot of the clutter, and now it’s pretty perfectly streamlined to exactly how I need it. Actually my whole apartment is ‘streamlined’ I guess you could say, to the point that most people say it looks like no one’s ever lived in it. But I remember people saying that about my place in San Francisco too. Seems to be a pattern there that goes beyond ‘streamlining’ (haha).

Of course this is going to come off  as absurd in an ‘In the studio with…’ but personally I don’t think anyone’s specific studio iterations, setup, or gear is important. Not only am I, I guess, an old dinosaur in that I liked when music was all still a mystery and nobody cared what anyone used to make it, but I think it isn’t important for someone else to know what one person uses, because they would never use it the same way anyway.

Take my job as a professor for example. I have a very specific teaching style that I’ve created and fostered over the last 15 years, and made all the materials that go along with it from scratch. I never use a book, and never use any other materials but my own. And it works extremely well for me. Year after year, my students outperform every other class, and in my current school I’ve been ranked in the top 3 teachers, if not the top, out of 1300 in the entire university every semester for the last 5 years. I’m not trying to come off all full of myself, but I’m proud of what I’ve achieved, and I’ve worked unbelievably hard to make it happen. Anyhoo…

As a result, I get a lot of other teachers asking me if they can come to my class, ‘share’ ideas (i.e copy my ideas), or just outright ask me if they can have my materials. Of course I say no, but it’s not just because I’m a dick (I mean I am, but that’s not the only reason), or because I’ve spent 15 years of my life developing every inch of my own style and materials from scratch and I’m not about to just hand them over to someone else – it’s because it wouldn’t matter anyway. Because I could hand them a year’s worth of material and it would never work for them. It only works for me, because it’s developed around my personality, and my personal communication style. In the hands of someone else it would make absolutely no sense. Just like someone else’s materials in my hands would make no sense. I’ve seen other great teachers in my school have their class, and I also could never do it how they do it. Even if I took someone’s super successful class or materials and tried to pull it off myself, my students would look at me like I had lost my mind, and none of them would want to listen to or believe a word I said. Why? Because it doesn’t ring true. It’s obviously not ‘me,’and it doesn’t suit my personality, my vision for what I want to convey in the class, and what I want my students to take away from it. So others’ style, and their vision, should be left to them, and mine left to me.

I think it’s the same with equipment, studios, etc. Another artist can have his setup, but if I tried to use it, I would either produce nothing, something probably fucking horrible, or at the very least something that sounds absolutely nothing like what they make. So it doesn’t matter what they use. Because the end result is going to be completely different anyway. They’ve chosen what they’ve chosen because it works well for them. And just like a teacher will fail with someone else’s materials, so too will someone trying to use someone else’s setup. It’s crafted for them, and their vision. So we all have to do our own trial and error, find our way, enjoy the result, and don’t worry about the process. And get those damn kids off my lawn.

Tell us about your favorite piece of hardware.

My OCD-riddled brain.

And what about the software that you use for production?

Love. And Pain. And sometimes revenge fantasy plugins.

Is there a particular piece of gear that you’re just dying to get your hands on and do you think one day you’ll have it

Personally I never think in that way. In music, as with all things, I just take it one day at a time, and I just make what I feel with what I have available to me. For me that’s what music is, it’s a snapshot of your life, mind, and times at the time you made it. And I think that includes whatever means you used to make it. Instead of some people who are always seeking to expand those parameters, I instead am always seeking to expand my ways of working within the parameters I have. To me that’s much more exciting, and can yield even more interesting results. Yes of course it’s exciting to have new tools at your disposal, but I think it’s even more exciting to be able to do something you’ve never been able to do before with tools you’ve had all along. Sometimes the fates decree that new tools will find their way into your hands. Sometimes they don’t. If so, awesome. If not, I can work with what I’ve got. If some piece of gear was meant for someone else, I’ll live – hopefully they at least make the most out of it.

In the studio with Brock Van Wey laptop

What does your live setup look like, and what do you bring with you when you travel for an extensive tour?

I don’t do extensive tours. In fact I don’t play more than two shows at any time I travel, and usually only play one. On top of that, I don’t play more than a few shows a year. The reason for that is two-fold:

First, I need to make a very personal connection with the promoter or person who wants to bring me out. We have to have a lot of communication (some of them probably feel too much haha), and I have to feel their ideals and mine are on the same page. I have to get to know them personally before I agree to anything even remotely close to traveling halfway across the world to be a part of something they’re doing, and in turn, a part of their lives, if even for a few days or a night. I’m only interested in playing for people and events I am 100% behind with every fiber of my being. And such people and events don’t come along that often. If it’s not something I feel I can put all of myself into, and a person I feel is a true kindred soul, then I pass on it. I’m just as happy staying home and working on music. Making music isn’t my job, so I don’t ‘need’ to do anything related to any part of it. I only do what I want and what I love – which leaves me completely free when it comes to all choices, including shows, which is the only way I would ever want to do it. Sometimes I envy friends of mine who have made their music their living, but for me, just like in the 90’s when I had the chance to make DJing my ‘job’and didn’t, I could never do so with making music. It needs to stay my reason for living – not the means by which I live.

The other major reason is that for me, every show I play has to be completely unique from any others I play before or after it. I’ve never done the same things, or even performed two of the same tracks, or even parts thereof, in any two different shows. I think every show I play should be 100% unique to that time and place, and those of us who were there. I want it to be something special that will literally never be experienced again, by anyone there, from the audience, to even myself. To ensure that happens can be really a really weird mental maze I have to navigate, and is admittedly really exhausting as I impose 100x more work and weird rules than I need to on myself, but it’s really important to me, and it’s something I’m not willing to change. Therefore touring is not something that is really doable for me, as it’s really quite unimaginable to go play 10 shows in a couple-week span that are all literally 100% different and unique from each other in every way. I mean technically I have the catalog to do so (haha), but I just couldn’t do it mentally.

A show is an extremely emotional (and therefore emotionally draining) experience for me, and each one tells an entirely different story, and has an entirely different point. It’s one of the most amazing experiences in the world. But it leaves me really emptied out… that level of opening myself up to an audience in a public place is a really intense thing for me, and one that leaves me really in a weird state for up to several weeks afterward. I love it, but it’s very taxing. So it’s not something I take lightly, or something that I do more than a few times a year.

Anyone who has been to one of my shows knows I only use a laptop (and a big-ass mixing board, but I don’t bring that with me). When I first began playing shows I brought equipment with me, had a whole ‘setup’ and all that good stuff, but that lasted I think two times, until I played a show once and a problem with a cable on one piece of equipment triggered a chain of events that caused everything, including my laptop at the time, to crash. So it was nothing but complete silence for like 15 minutes while I had to get everything going again. It was a nightmare. And one I wasn’t gonna go through again. So after that I decided I needed to streamline (there’s that word again) everything down and make it as simple as possible, which is why I do it the way I do now. In fact, it gives a new meaning to the word. Not only do I have a dedicated machine that I only use for live shows, but living in China, and knowing the people that I do here, allowed me to go ridiculously far beyond that.

In typical (if you know me) random brand allegiance, I only use Asus computers (I currently have 5, 3 for music production, 1 for live shows, and 1 for everyday use). In the city I live in, the woman who runs the Asus store is a friend of mine, so she pulled a bunch of strings and allowed me to go to the Asus factory (it’s about an hour from where I live) and not only work with them to build custom laptops purely designed completely to my specifications (anyone who knows laptops knows that’s nearly impossible), complete with custom-made motherboards and nearly all custom-made hardware all built directly at the factory and specially designed to optimally sync with each other – but she then hired out her best tech guy to work solely for me, and who is a complete magician, to build me a custom version of Windows 7 from scratch (meaning he modeled it after Windows 7 but it’s completely custom-built and written from the ground up) that can only run what I use to play a show. It can’t get on the internet, it can’t run any other software, and it has zero other capabilities or functions… Hell, it can’t even type text outside of specifically designated parameters limited to what I use for the show. So it has literally zero things running in the background, and the CPU is always 100% dedicated to whatever I’m doing musically. My three music machines are set up the same way, but with those ones he adapted the system to be slightly more flexible, so I can add in new operations, software, hardware, and functions as needed. And I can type stuff in a few more situations, otherwise it’s kinda hard to keep track of finished tracks (haha). But the amount of unbridled power and unshakable focus those things can generate is frightening.

That not only cost me about a years’ salary in technical development costs and burnt hardware, but it also took me spending quite a bit of time to learn about how the operating system itself works (finally my damn Master’s in Chinese paid off, as the entire system top to bottom is in Chinese) so the whole thing was quite laborious, but you gotta pay the cost to the boss (haha). If anyone else tried to use it but me and the guy who designed it, they’d feel like they were on acid. And some kind of acid that makes every word Chinese (haha). It’s really bizarrely designed, and makes no sense to anyone but him and me, really. But we’re the only ones it needs to make sense to. It took about a year total with all said and done for us to pull it off, and I’d say about 20-25 different sessions of trial and error between every kind of (computer) hardware and combination thereof imaginable (between the customized machines and the customized operating system), much of which we and the factory were really just stabbing at blind, and we ruined several machines in the process, but it was all worth it. Sometimes Chinese ingenuity really kicks ass. And combined with my rampant OCD and clinically insane need to take everything ten football lengths past overboard, well then it becomes a juggernaut.

In the studio with Brock Van Wey 02

What is the most important environmental aspect of your current workspace and what would be a particular element that you would improve on?

Well having my four cats either literally piled on top of each other on my lap or attempting to simultaneously perch on four different parts of my body (including one who insists on literally bear-hugging my wrist the entire time I make music) during every second of the musical process is a pretty important environmental aspect I guess, and the wall-to-wall Hello Kitty beatdown most think I am joking about but am all too serious (among my numerous overboard obsessions, Hello Kitty ranks near the top), but overall, having a workspace in a Chinese house is already the most challenging thing. Anyone who has ever been in a Chinese house will know what I mean. Everything is hardwood floors, marble, tile, and brick walls, single-pane windows that don’t even shut all the way, no carpet and nothing even remotely soft or fuzzy within 100 miles, and Chinese don’t believe in insulation or anything in-between the floors or walls, so not only is it either insanely hot or insanely cold, with no middle ground, but acoustically it’s an absolute nightmare, not only because you can literally hear every word of a conversation 5 floors down, but also every minuscule sound anywhere within a one-mile radius. It’s basically just one big uncontrollable echo chamber (the house and the country itself haha)

Over the years I’ve learned to be able to translate extremely precisely what something sounds like in my studio into what it will sound like in the rest of the world, but it took a long time. I always say I wish I could have an environment that was really neutral and just sounded amazing, but really the adversity of the situation is actually beneficial. I can’t become spoiled by a great sounding environment or situation that makes music that doesn’t actually sound that great seem like it does, and I’ve had to learn to really understand every inch of what I make, and instead of hindering my sound, I think it’s only helped hone it and make it thrive. I’m so used to the environment now, it would feel weird to change it, even to a better one. And although I threaten to kick my cats out on the street on a daily basis, I can’t change that either. And we all know Hello Kitty ain’t goin’ anywhere. No matter what your studio is like, you’ll have to learn and compensate for how what you make will sound elsewhere when it’s unleashed on the world.. But overcoming the rough parts is half the fun.

In the studio with Brock Van Wey 03

What can you tell us about your overall process of composition? How are the ideas born, where do they mature, and when do they finally see the light?

Ideas are born solely from emotion… I only know the emotion I want to express. I’ve mentioned before that every time I make a track, the title is written before I even imagine note one. It’s the emotion or story I need to tell, and the whole reason behind everything that has to do with the track. Without it, nothing else happens. From there, the track, and in turn the album (since mostly all I do nowadays is albums), composes itself, really, in that I don’t consciously make any decisions to steer it this way or that. It goes where it wants, and I follow it there. But obviously both my background in different facets of music composition, coupled with the life experiences my music is borne from, guides my hand, whether I notice or not. So in the end, my music takes on many different styles, tempos, etc, from beatless ambient to deep techno to 180+ breaks to deep and ambient house and everything in-between, because they all express very different things, and life is full of different experiences and emotions. I never sit down with a pre-determined notion of which way I’ll say what I want to say. But I think naturally, due to the nature of what I want to say, my subconscious, and my heart, lead it in a certain direction. You have to just go where it takes you.

It reminds me of back when I used to DJ, there was a guy who used to play at our parties, and one day I noticed he was taking the records out of his case one at a time, in order, and I quickly surmised (yes, I’m a genius) that not only had he obviously worked out every second of his DJ set days before the party, but it was the same set he had played before, even down to the exact points he mixed things in (yes, that’s how OCD I am). As a result, he was unable to adapt to anything that was going on in his environment, how the crowd was reacting, or even the mood of the day. How on earth could he know how people would all feel that day, not to mention himself? It just all came across painfully clear in the set, which was technically great, but just felt really off, and heartless, and the awkwardness resonated through everyone, from him, to the crowd. So being the asshole that I am, I snuck up when he wasn’t looking and mixed up the order of his records, and it sent him into a panic. I told him to just follow his heart, follow the feeling, and just go where it took him. No one would care if he ‘fucked up,’ and neither would I, but I’d rather he ‘fuck up’ for 90 minutes but feel the shit out of it than play a set perfectly that had nothing to do with anything. But he couldn’t do it, and I had to come on and play the rest of his slot. Not long after, he completely stopped DJing. He knew it wasn’t in his heart. I think the same is true with composition, making your own music, etc. You can’t sit down and already think of exactly how a piece is going to be, from beginning to end. At least I can’t. It’s going to take on a life of its own, as it reveals its own new stories it wants to add to the one you wanted to say. That’s the whole beauty of it all. And if you try to force things into a pre-determined mold, it will sound about as exciting and relevant as a DJ set you planned a week ago alone in your bedroom. When I DJed, every set told a story from my life… but I never knew how that story would manifest itself until I began to tell it, and every time, even I was surprised with how the story unfolded. Composing my own music is the same. Just on an infinitely more intense scale.

Like with everything, it’s all about trial and error, making mistakes and savoring small victories, and understanding not only your own voice and composition style, but also what works and what doesn’t in an actual sonic and sound design sense. My sound is very dirty and intense, and both are exactly how I like it. I’ve worked for years to be able to make work, and to bring out the vision and compositions that were always in my head and heart, and that came with years of both trial and error, and conscious learning. You can not know what you’re doing and mash just three things on top of each other and it will sound like complete shit… but know what you’re doing, and you can stack literally 120+ channels together, playing simultaneously, and it will still sound awesome. I say 120+ because I’ve done it before. A lot of my tracks have at least 70-80, most are well over 100, and more than a few are well over 120+. Again, those custom machines come into play (haha) viva la China. The best possible moment in my ‘career,’ as it were, was when I was finally able to make something sound exactly like I wanted it to, rather than just how I could within the limitations of what I knew how to do.

I can easily say “I like my sound like I like my women… dirty and intense,” because my girlfriend can’t read English well enough to read this (haha).

As far as it seeing the light, like most things with life and music, I take that as it comes. Sometimes I make something specifically on the request of someone or a label, and sometimes (more often than not) I just make it because it’s what I do – it’s my reason for living. I don’t really think about what will ‘happen’ with it later. But I will admit that once it’s done, I usually know what feels right as far as how it should finally see the light. Sometimes that comes to be, and sometimes it doesn’t. But I think all that happens for a reason. Every single thing that didn’t ‘go my way’ or not as expected ended up being a blessing in disguise. So everything happens for a reason, and I think your music will always end up where it’s truly meant to be. Just like with gear or anything else, I never worry about it. What’s meant to happen will happen.

In the studio with Brock Van Wey 04

After the piece is complete, how do you audition the results? What are you reactions to hearing your music in a different context, setting, or a sound system?

After a piece is complete, it spends weeks or months in every room of my house, on a lot of different combinations of speakers, from studio monitors, to Kef towers (my favorite speakers on the planet), to crappier home speakers, to complete piece of shit computer speakers, and most importantly on walks in the headphones. I know a lot of people who listen on different sources in order to make it sound the same across all platforms, but it’s not the way I approach it. I pretty much already know how it’s going to sound through most every possible speaker and setup. And I know it’s gonna sound different – and that’s fine. I think each gives it its own character, and can even add to or alter the story in its own way. I think that’s all part of the experience. It has a life of its own, and will live differently in different environments. Music is fluid, not static. It’s supposed to live and breathe in different ways at different times. Of course I want it to sound as good as possible on all fronts – but I don’t think it needs to sound ‘the same.’ Different isn’t always bad.

The placement of a track or album in the outside world, when I take long walks, is the real testing ground. If it all makes sense in that setting, and I really feel it to my core, and also throughout everything around me, I know it’s as it should be. I always seem to say ‘not to get all hippie-dippy,’ but it’s kind of one of these things where I can feel, hear, and see the music resonating in everything around me… every thing, every person… everything… they all seem to know exactly what I know, and hear what I hear. Once that happens, even within the first second, I know. And there is no doubt.

It’s always an amazing thing to hear my music on a big sound system, as I don’t have the opportunity to hear it very loud at all at any other point (I’m much more considerate of my neighbors than they are of me). I’ve had the fortune to play on some phenomenal and phenomenally loud systems, and it’s really astounding how something even you yourself made, and know every inch of, can come to life in such a new way, like you’re hearing it for the first time. Sometimes it’s really like the track is being born again before my very eyes (or ears), it really takes on a life it never had before. It’s an unbelievable feeling. After all, I don’t care what kind of electronic music you make, it’s all meant to be heard on a big system. Period.

One of the most surreal things is hearing one of your tracks in a completely unexpected setting or context, like being at an event and hearing a DJ play it, or hear it on the radio in someone’s car. It’s so surreal that there have been a few times it took quite some time for it to register that it was even my track, it seemed so bizarre to hear it out of the context of my house or studio. There have been times I had to sit and think about where I knew the track from (haha)… One time I was in a promoter’s car when he picked me up from the airport, and one of my songs came on the radio. It was pretty hilarious, I remember saying ‘Damn, this sounds familiar, but I can’t remember who this is. I think I used to play the shit out of this track back when I DJed. Damn, that shit’s gonna bug me now!’ before he just looked at me like I needed to be committed, awkwardly uttering, “Uhhhh, dude, that’s your album.” (haha) so yeah, context can be a powerful factor.

Audition-wise, no one but me ever hears anything I make before the label, and then the rest of the world. So when you buy the CD, you’re the only other person in the world besides me and the label to ever hear it. I don’t audition it through anyone or ask anyone’s opinion. If I love it, and it says what I want it to say, that’s all that matters to me. I’m super lucky to have a family of labels that agrees with my opinion more than not.

In the studio with Brock Van Wey 08

Do you ever procrastinate? If so, what do you usually find yourself doing during those times?

It happens sometimes, just like I think it happens to anyone. There are times when I work like a bat out of hell 24-hours a day for weeks or months at a time, and others when I can’t seem to get my shit together to save my life. Inspiration comes as an avalanche or nothing at all. Like everything in my life, there’s really no middle ground. A lot of the time I spend suspended in the most frustrating of places, with my mind wanting things to happen, but the rest of me just not being a team player. If 100% of me is not 100% invested in it, then I’d much rather make nothing at all. So all I can do is wait until all my planets align. More hippie-dippy shit, I know.

Like anyone on the planet I have my lazy spells where I really just don’t do something because I can’t muster up the jam for it, but more often than not it’s my chronic and sometimes manic depression that gets the better of me, and can take me out for days, weeks, or even months at a time. There are times when depression can be the best motivator and inspiration on the planet when it comes to music, it’s been responsible for some of my greatest and most well-known works. But it’s a fine line, and when that line is crossed, you just shut down. Nothing in the world means anything. I just go numb. I care about nothing, and no one, and I somehow get up in the morning and go to sleep at night, but I’m not alive. I’m lucky in that I am very clear what’s happening during these times, I know exactly what it is and that it will eventually pass, though I never really know when. All I can do is wait. I can’t make any real decisions in that state, because though I’m ‘rational’ in that I know what my state is, I don’t make rational decisions, and in the past I’ve completely deleted months and years of work because I thought it was all bullshit, only to severely regret it when I came back to ‘normal’ (in quotes because with me that’s a sliding scale). And my depression most often manifests itself in pretty intense rage, which is also not the best time for decision-making, especially concerning something you’ve spent months or years of your life on.

So during that time I can only stay far away from music for a second to make me realize how much I need it. Because especially in the throes of depression, you start to think there’s nothing in the world that you need, or that means anything. But that being said, you need a life outside of music sometimes either way, and I usually spend it lost in video games, the few TV shows I religiously follow (especially Sons of Anarchy and Justified), or simultaneously yelling at and fawning over my cats, which is always a good go-to.

Sometimes it becomes a vicious circle, where then I do actually fall into my own procrastinating that I can’t blame on depression or anything else (and what could be worse than shit you can’t blame on something or someone else?) because it becomes conscious, as I grow too used to putting things off, even though the original reason was out of my control. But there’s a reason for all that too, and I think the procrastination is your mind and body telling you to chill out and find some balance, just like in physical training when you overtrain, your body tells you really clearly in numerous ways to chill the fuck out and rest for a few days. And if you don’t listen, it will make you regret it. Over the years I’ve learned that for me, all I can do is wait it out and listen to my mind and body. Things will happen as they should happen.

I’m in this for life. A few days, weeks, or even months don’t matter. Not if you’re hopefully making something that at least someone in the world will remember forever. And that’s always the hope.

bvdub.org

3 thoughts on “In the studio with Brock Van Wey

  1. I got my degree in sound design in 2012. Now, I work for a food co-op. I once pursued a career in video games, but I, too, suffer OCD and depression, and I fear my music befouled by a lack of symmetry and sterility, for I can only think straight in this environment. I don’t have to think straight to do my job on the checkout, but music is what I live for, and I’ve given a lot of thought to my music–to the tools I use. If I worked for a a video game developer, I’d no longer have 100% control over my music or my environment. But I’d sooner give up everything else–including 24 hours of my week–than give up my music and what it means to me. Brock, your music, your words–they speak to me. I chanced upon your music only a year ago, but I feel I’ve known you for longer. By the way, I love Dead Space and Mirrors Edge. Thank you.

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