Ferry Corsten: Blade Runner was a big inspiration behind this album
Dutch DJ/producer Ferry Corsten recently unveiled his sixth album, Blueprint, which is a whole new take on anything he has done before.
Jack Wynne spoke to the 43-year-old all about the films which inspired him to focus this project around sci-fi, the choice of vocalists and working with huge film stars like Campbell Scott.
When I ask about a particular film that inspired him to make an album based on a sci-fi theme, Corsten instantly picked out arguably one of the all-time greats from the early 80s.
‘Listening to music of certain movies that have always stuck with me over the years I think Bladerunner is definitely one,’ he adds.
‘Very recently Arrival by Johann Johannsson.
‘Amazing stuff, so inspiring and I’ve been listening to a lot of stuff from the guys in Iceland lately.’
Combining a music album with an audio book wasn’t immediately apparent to Corsten when he first started thinking about ideas.
‘I never knew exactly what I wanted to do differently but then I thought it might be good to do a crossbreed between a music album and an audio book,’ he says.
‘As soon as I had this idea I thought this is it.’
This approach also seemed like a particularly good way of addressing the way people often fail to fully appreciate an entire music track, according to Corsten.
‘One of the other big motivations was how can I make an album sound interesting enough for the Spotify mentality we have,’ he continues.
‘I love Spotify but it breeds a mentality of listening to a track for the first two seconds and then pressing the skip button.’
Corsten admits it was refreshing to try his hand at different disciplines while putting this album together.
‘When producing music you start writing and whatever sticks is what you go with but with this one it’s tapping into whole new areas that I’ve never worked with before like story writing,’ he adds.
‘I think this album is also the first one where I’ve been very hands on with some of the song lyrics.’
The Rotterdam-born musician confessed it was a strange experience working with a hugely successful voice actor like Campbell Scott and dictating to him what he wanted.
‘He definitely earned his stripes so me telling him what I’m looking for and how he should do it felt very strange,’ he continues.
‘At the same time you really notice how professional those guys are and how open-minded they are to this thing that they have never done before.’
American vocalist HALIENE features on five of the tracks on the album and Corsten admitted there was no doubt she was the right person after first hearing her voice.
‘She actually sent me an acapella a while back and that’s the first time I heard about her,’ he says.
‘It was very angelic and definitely what I was looking for.’
Another first on this album was Corsten’s decision to work with a Dutch vocalist.
‘I’ve never really done anything with a Dutch singer on any of my previous albums,’ he continues.
‘With Niels Geusebroek I really like his voice and he is one of the few artists from Holland that I feel doesn’t have a big Dutch accent when he speaks in English.’
The Flashover Recordings label boss also explained how the different types of visual designs helped to add further authenticity.
‘I teamed up with Oscar, a visual artist from the US, who made these neat pieces of art for each track based on the story which I think gave it a whole new character as well,’ he adds.
‘The whole thing packaged together is something very different.’
Since releasing Blueprint, Corsten has toured across Europe, North America as well as Asia and described the positive reaction he has received so far.
‘It’s surprising to see a lot of people singing along to some of the songs already,’ he continues.
‘That’s always a good thing that you push the right buttons I guess.’
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