Getting into the nitty gritty of their touring and studio rig.
Over the past few years, 30/70 have been a force in the Neo-Soul/Funk/Jazz/Dance music scene not only here at home in Melbourne, but all across Europe too. Their last record Fluid Motion was released via Rhythm Section International, a UK based label run by Bradley Zero with worldwide dance floor appeal.
Returning to the label with a new single, 30/70’s ‘Taste Like Freedom’ evolves over nine enticing minutes, with Allysha’s voice floating effortlessly over the jazz-funk arrangement touching on topics of love and openness.
On the new single Allysha says “‘Tastes Like Freedom’ is about openly, freely and proudly expressing your desire and your sexuality. To be perfectly myself, to feel held and safe, yet limitless in body and mind, and to feel even more in love when I am accepting and accepted, that tastes like freedom. She tastes like freedom.”
To celebrate this new release, Allysha Joy takes us through the band’s gear setup for ‘Tastes Like Freedom’ and also for when they’re on the road.
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Yeah 30/70 definitely goes deep on the live sound and just as the band and the line up has continued to develop over time, so has the gear ! I think it all started with our love for SP303’s and sample based music. In fact at one stage I think every member of the band was running a 303 – for bass, Rhodes, guitar, vocals and then Ziggy (Z.F.E.X) on kit with the classic Roland trigger pad and it just continued to evolve from there. The band started out making music in the intersection of boom bap and jazz, heavily inspired by Madlib, Dilla, Badu.. you know the vibe.
But as the stages got bigger and the beats got cleaner and more orientated towards the dance floor our gear had to get tighter. Our sound now is deeply inspired by a lot of the older UK scene, house and broken beat and always connected through jazz. The gear and the way we use the gear has to continue to evolve with it and I think helps to challenge us sonically beyond the songwriting.
At the moment I’m rocking an SP404 and a Collider Delay+Reverb pedal with a WHOLE heap of percussion and samples that I play live! I initially loved the SP for all its gritty dirty sounds, the distortion and bit-crush when I would do spoken word/rap style vocals. But now I mostly use the phaser, chorus and pitch shift and big looped delays for songs like ‘Tempted’ and moody moments!
I love using my SP in the studio too, for processing and for my solo sets, playing beats and running the Rhodes through it! Finn actually plays my Fender Rhodes Mark II on the live thing, running it through a Boss RE20 and a few other pedals – but if we’re on the road it’s the Nord Stage III and a Moog Sub 37 for Finn Rees (Close Counters)
Ziggy Zeitgeist (ZFEX)
Ziggy Zeitgeist (Z.F.E.X) has constructed one of the most incredible live drum sounds out of anyone we know! Landing on what feels to be a fully produced dance floor sound! He uses a Roland trigger module set up, with all his own samples and quirky sounds mixed with his carefully selected cymbals and snares wrapped in gaffa and bent just perfect. The cymbal stack, or clap stack is definitely also a product of sample culture, emulating a produced snare or 808 like clap in a live setting.
Josh Kelly (JK Group) probably has the most tech. saxophone set up out of anyone around!! Josh explains – its a Selmer Reference 54 alto sax with a fake unbranded Meyer New York Mouthpiece going into a DPA 4099 clip on microphone with OPR grill ribbon mic u-mod into an Eventide mixing link pre amp, Roland SP303, Electro Harmonix Small Stone phaser pedal and then into a Boss RE20 Space Echo – running both wet and dry signals out for the mix! It’s wild! JK is a master and this new record we’re tracking is covered in baritone, alto and the zesty flavours of soprano sax!
We’ve released a bunch of music so far including our latest record Fluid Motion, all heavily and uniquely produced by Thomas Manfield and the band! We’ve always pushed the envelope on the production individually and collectively, in the live thing and for recording. We want to bring the feeling of being in the room or being at the gig to the record and for it to feel live and raucous but Tastes Like Freedom needed its own special treatment!
We wanted to keep it clean and deep and let it be one for the dance floors and the remixers! We recorded the track all in together at Nick Herrera’s studio at the Grove, then sent it off to the UK for the mix treatment from Lewis Moody. We’re really excited to share the track with you and the remixes to come, from four greats of the international!
Shouts to Rhythm Section International on this one! To Lucky Pereira on the congas and now sitting in on the kit for the live thing while Ziggy is out in Berlin. Shouts as well to Matt Hayes on the Bass and Tom Mansfield on the Guitar! Blessed!
Check out 30/70’s new single below to hear the gear in action.
‘Tastes Like Freedom’ is out now via Rhythm Section International.