Interview With Arkaik: The Journey, Vision & Favorite Plugins

Flexout Audio, Arkaik

Based in London, Drum & Bass producer Peter Goebel, also known as Arkaik, is one of those names that set the bar higher in the contemporary scene.

Consistently delivering high-quality tracks since 2010, his minimal, dark, deep, roller-oriented, and clean style of production has caught up the attention of big labels such as Dispatch Recordings, Flexout Audio, Vandal Records, to name a few.

Thumping drums and heavy-weight basslines are the core characteristics of his mixes, where he proves why he has played before mighty artists such as Calibre and Break from the very beginning of his career.

Now established as one of the big names in deep drum and bass, Arkaik talks about his first steps into electronic music, his favorite weapons when it comes to production alongside his upcoming releases.

What first got you into music?

I have always loved music since being a kid, but the first point where I really listened and got it was when I was 13. My brother listened to dance music, techno, breakbeat, jungle around that time, and I just didn’t get it; this music sounded repetitive.

One day he locked me in his bedroom and made me listen to a breakbeat track for the whole 10 mins or so; by the time the track finished, I got what he meant about progression and got why people liked this repetitive progressive music.

After that, I bought Roni size – new forms and also Bad Company – Shot down on Safari – these 2 albums really showed me what drum n bass was at that time, around then none of my friends like dnb; no one really got it at my age group, everyone at that time was into garage, metal or hip hop. Then At the age of 15, I got some Numark tt200’s my first pair of direct drive decks and spent every day spinning the same 5 vinyl for about a month.

After slowly grasping DJing and spending every week at my local records shop (dance2uk) my whole world revolved around dnb, dubplates & mixing. After DJing on the Reading scene for a few years and having a regular show on pirate radio, I decided to start working on my own productions around the age of 21.

What are your most favorite third-party audio plugins?

OOOh, this is a hard question to answer as there are so many, and they all have their own uses. Wavesfactory – Trackspacer would have to be in the top 5 as this plugin is great for making space in the mix; the plugin analyses the EQ of the signal and will remove or side chain the signal as much as you want, like an automatic multi-band compressor, quite handy

Other than that, I love my old SonicLabs – Wolfram; I think this was free with a computer music magazine 10 years ago. Very simple plugin, with a cut-off, phaser, lo cut, distortion, high cut. A Simple little box, but if you get the right settings on it, it can add some lovely harmonics to the bass and give a nice grit to sub-layers.

When Are You Most Creative?

I am most creative either first thing in the morning, 7am, fresh after wake up, or 2am when starting to get into limbo mode, I find these 2 states to be the most creative.

If you could change anything about the music industry, what would it be?

I would change the way royalties are set up and also how much labels, distributers & shops take. Back when music was sold physically, these middle men needed to get paid and for a good reason, but now living in a digital era where music is sold digitally, these middle men shouldn’t be getting the level of income that they do; it’s unjust to the musicians and producers who dedicate their lives to creating something special.

For someone to take over half of the profit from a track for just having it available on their store seems ridiculous, and music should be sold in the same way and physical products whereby the stores think they should get this amount of profit.

Do you have any favorite artists, and which are these?

Those are Alex Perez, Halogenix, Skeptical, dBridge always with quality music and great blends.

Are you planning to release new music anytime soon?

I have an EP planned for Flexout called the ‘Mind games EP’ this is due for release later in the year; I will also have a single on the 10 years of Flexout VA LP. Apart from that, I will have some other remix singles out that I can’t talk about yet – lots of collaborations in the pipeline.

What’s your advice to other producers on how to be unique?

My advice is to believe in what you want to make and close yourself off from current trends, and then you will find a sound that is unique to you. Music can be seen on so many levels that it may not seem unique to you because you have listened to music like that your whole life, but to someone else, it may be unique. Combining your influences and listening to a broad spectrum of music also helps

Did you ever think of making music in other genres?

I have made hip-hop for a while and made half-time drum n bass for the first few years of producing, but have always had a thing for 87/174 bpm, so I have always felt the need to write music at this speed. I write music for the dance floor and for myself, so I just stick to what I love doing.

Any advice you would give to new artists?

Work on your music until you are super happy with it, then approach a label that you want to work with, and if this fails, try again and again. By which point, you will know if your music is good enough to release and will know of the labels you want to work with or the direction you want your music to go. Stick to what you want to do and make sure you write music for yourself.

What is one message you would give to your fans?

Thank you so much for supporting me; if you have ever been to a gig or bought one of my tunes, it means the world. Every little that you guys n girls help out means that I can continue to produce and work on music. So a massive thank you for giving me this opportunity and letting me explore this world.

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