Our extremely adventurous and visionary client, WE ARE PI, approached us with a tequila tinged challenge; find a banger assured to provoke a hands in the air moment at summer festivals. Then deconstruct this banger to be played live by a bunch of people at a house party.
A track came front of mind from more than 1 member of the P&S team, ‘Rinse & Repeat feat. Kah-Lo’ by Riton, which went from underground club and radio smash to commercial cross over anthem on Ministry of Sound. A perfectly aimed, deadly accurate shot at the brief.
The artist in question, Riton AKA Henry Smithson, has heritage. With early releases on Mark Rae’s iconic Grand Central label, then Ed Banger with DJ Mehdi (RIP), collabs with Soulwax and worthy of a mention, his exceptional and underrated avant-garde eine kliene nach musik project, wow!
You get the idea about heritage.
Rinse & Repeat featured vocalist Kah-Lo, meaning a deal was split between both Henry & Kah-Lo. This deal wasn’t plain sailing with many stakeholders involved and Kah-Lo being signed by Universal part way through the process, but from a long standing relationship with Henry’s manager, Dan Stacey at Hard Livings, (a record label comrade when at 679), we got it over the line.
Riton was locked down around the same time as exceptional director Chris Cairns, and Chris brought on board his sound technologists and all round fantastic jiggery pokery specialists, Will & Mike from Strings & Tins.
With Henry based in NYC, proximity didn’t allow face time for pre production, yet he was willing to take on the brief and get into the deconstruction of his song with the team, from running off addition synth parts to recommendations on sound design to fit with the original production of his track. The importance of Henry overseeing this process was ten fold to keep the production and re-arrangement of his song authentic. There's nothing worse than a brand hijacking a song purely to fit their own needs and luckily, the smart folk at Pi were hell bent on making this production an authentic one.
Thousands of patches and cables later, a touch of Ableton trickery into a banging sound system and an East end flat is turned into a life size sampler and synth for the shoot. Bathroom taps modulate LFO’s, cooker hobs become drum pads to trigger vocal samples and stairs squelch a lead synth line, this house party was well and truly plugged. Will & Mike kindly reveal their magic, take a look behind the production curtain if you dare : Behind the Scenes.
Henry was on set to contribute final touches to the overall sound, meet influencers and get involved.
Following the shoot, then edit, the sound arrangement was an epic task. Again, hats off to Will for his dedication. We worked with the team to ensure the final mix was something Henry was happy to put his name to. Amen, and it was.
The effort, is it worth it? Well, winning another Music & Sound International Award for ‘Best Re-Record / Adaptation: Online’ kind of tells us “Yes” - Ta-Dah!