King_leer's Videos Playlist....Summer 2015

Monday, 11 November 2013


Back on my work on Plan B's 2012 Ill Manors, it's time to let Faith SFX talk on his cpntribution to this great record. Besides a longtime pal, a friend, Faiths Brings  a unique feeling to Ben's own environment. At the end of this post you'll find links for Faith SFX work. I sincerely hope to bring him here to Portugal as part of my relation with F-10 Manegement that represents Faith. So, let's keep the......FAITH!


Ill Manors is a portrait of a certain 'Britania". Did this changed your personal approach on the performance side? Do you find there links to your own growing up experience?


ill Manors is definitely a movie/album I can relate to because a lot of the issues highlighted in the film were things that happened around the area i lived in, kentish town London. In terms of how i perform, I guess there's more energy on stage because we all feed off each other in order to put on a great show. ill Manors Is one of the tracks which hypes up the crowd the most because of the beat and whats being said in the lyrics, so that definitely brings out a certain level of energy.


In what tracks did you worked on Ill Manors record?


I didn't really work on any track specifically but i helped Ben with ideas & lyrics whether we were on tour chilling on the bus or in the studio brainstorming. I worked on a few tracks for the 'Ballad of belmarsh' album with my good friend Delio from High Frequency. Ben put that project to the side at the time so that he could focus on finishing ill Manors.


From hip-hop to soul or hip-hop-soul. How is it to develop your work within this variety of musical different landscapes? At the recent tv appearences there's also a string section. How is it to work with Ben?


As a beatboxer, I find it very easy to navigate through different genres of music which is probably why me and Ben share a certain musical chemistry whether its on stage or in the studio.


What are your favourite Ill Manors live tracks (live and recorded)? 


Live, its easily ill manors just because of the reaction from the crowd as soon as they hear the intro string section. Narrator, Drug Dealer, Falling down & playing with fire are my favourite tracks to listen to.



Sunday, 25 August 2013


Well, i'm back again with the second part of my work on 2012 Plan B's, Ill Manors.

"Lets get loud" and straight to sound craf. 

At the Edge Recording Studio, Plan B made a 5 day sessions before the release of the record. They were - as per Studio's blog entry - the final touches:

I've contacted Jon Delf and sent him a few questions about those sessions. Jon got me Mark Winterburn, one of the engineers who worked on the sessions to answer me. To both a big Thank You.
Bellow you can find some more stories behind this record creation and even one about using a different microphone  at one of the record finest tunes. Hope you like it :)

(Mark Winterburn - Sound Engineer)


Can you tell us where in time your work relation with Plan B started? How and when was the approach for the Ill Manors project?

I worked on ill Manors for 5 days at the start of June 2012, when Ben came to Edge Studios. The bulk of the album was already finished apart from vocals on 2 tracks and another track that was recorded and mixed from scratch.

As per your blog entry, it was a 5 session in your studio. How's Ben's method as a producer? Does he seeks for outside inputs or he has the hole thing planned and goes directly to his goal?


Ben works fast and is very precise about what he wants, relying on little input from others. He pays particular attention to vocals and there was a lot of comping takes to get the best possible results. The attention to detail was incredible, working right down to the smallest of edits and tiny uses of automation that, when done, made a huge difference to the feel of the vocal. Although he was just as comfortable leaving me to edit takes on my own and listened to other people's opinions.


I always ask a kind of tutorial question since this article is also about learning about a craft and what's behind a record like this one. So, as you were editing and recording at Edge, there were guitar parts that was recorded in London and sent online to you. How is that work sent? Is it downloaded from a server? Specifically, how do you keep the digital quality when dealing with those files, is it through a special software? Probably the readers think that some sound quality can be lost this way. Help us out learning how it's done.


In the case of ill Manors files were constantly being swapped between various studios in London and Edge. Everything we tracked was sent to the either Al Shux or Labrinth to hear and then, when approved, to Ben's engineers to mix into the original sessions. Obviously sending MP3s is out of the question so files are consolidated in Pro Tools and uploaded to an online file-sharing server. This method of sending files doesn't result in any loss of quality as the sample rate, BIT-depth and file format (WAV, AIFF etc.) remain the same.


Share with us an interesting moment that occurred on this sessions.


When recording the track 'Great Day For A Murder' which was recorded in full at Edge, Ben used an SM58 in the control room to record the vocals. On the other tracks he had been on a Neumann M147 in a vocal booth so seeing the performance close-up was a great experience, and seeing visually how much energy went into the takes was fantastic as he was really giving it his all, and I think you can hear that on the album.


One last question – a general one about running and studio and the craft within:
If you were at a school talking to kids that were about to decide their future careers what would you tell them why they should follow a sound engineer degree?


Having worked various jobs in a variety of industries I can say that the level of satisfaction and enjoyment that comes from engineering is something that can't be matched by any other profession. Whether it's working with unsigned bands or big artists I'm always learning something new and every session is different. Even if it is just for a hobby making music is hard to beat in terms of fun. My advice to people that want to pursue music or sound as a career is to give it all the effort you have and never stop trying. Perseverance and a little luck can lead to unexpected things.


Sunday, 28 July 2013


So, let's start the "Games".

Ellie Robinson was kind enough to give her contribution to this work. I believe it is important both for Plan B's fans and other people that eventually are not acquainted with this reality and others that share a different punt of view:



King_leer (KL):

Ellie, first of all tell us if you know Ben Drew (Plan B) and in what way this record was received by you and since you are part of the local Labour party how did the Council react to its release and major attention brought to that particular region in the UK both by the record and also the motion picture release.

Ellie Robinson (ER):

I do not know Ben personally, I am acquainted with his family. His mother was on the same governing body as me.
I wrote this article on the film which explains my views:

The Council did not respond to the film and to be honest it did not get enough coverage for the Council to have been expected too.

Being this record mainly a social picture of a certain Britain, more focused on the 90's give me your view as a citizen about growing up around Forest Gate and surroundings that are mainly the central landscape of this record and the place Ben was raised.

Most people who grow up in Forest Gate do not experience the type of social circumstances the film portrays. However I have known people to experience knife crime and prostitution and other issues highlighted. These are definitely things that happen in Newham as they do in other deprived areas. However Newham is also a place of opportunity, we have the youngest population in Europe, and the most multicultural community in the country. We have just had the Olympic Games in Newham which has bought regeneration. Our schools, against popular belief, achieve very well for our young people, above national average. I have really enjoyed growing up here as you learn so much about humanity.


As a social active person what you think that should’ve been done in the past to avoid – and I’ll quote Ben on last week’s (at the time this Q&A took place) interview at the Jonathan Ross show – “the main reason that we had the riots is because we have a generation of kids that in-parent (I suppose the parents) no one show them love...they feel they are not worth, they walk at the front door and read the newspaper and the media tells them the same and the society reads the newspaper and they believe it as well. And when they contact with a kid like that they are pre-conception of them and treat the accordingly...” – what should have been done in the past to prevent this to happen and what are you major actual social activities to avoid this in the future?


I think we have to make sure young people have a range of good role models, not just their parents, this can be achieved through schools and is increasingly so. The local school, Forest Gate Community school runs a project called Future First in which alumni return to the school and advise the young people on their futures, these are good role models for young people.


Besides when I was younger I was never connected to any political party but if I was I’d like to embrace the spirit around a creative moment like this and use it as a social catalyst to improve local policies. How the council interacts with this cultural achievements?

We haven't used the film in this way.


Have you watched the movie ?


What is your favourite track from Ill Manors?


 ill Manors and Playing with Fire.


Let's take a look at one of Ellie's favourite tracks, "Playing with Fire":


Hope you liked it.
To Follow:

·         Mark Winterburn, Engineer from Edge Studios after John Delf indication.
·         Faith SFX - Beatboxer and long time Ben's colaborator and friend.



My dear friends and followers. I do apologize for being absent for so many time. Writing this stories and articles is something that I love. Music is not my daily activity (banking business is) but is a passion. I've been also searching for a plan B. During this year I was "off", I’ve ended a almost 20 years relation, returned to my childhood house downtown Porto to live with my father unfortunately just for 5 months since he left us last October. A new relationship also emerged but again unfortunately at the present time back to stage zero. My Random Access Memory almost had an overflow :) but my two kids are ok and I’ve also started my second experience at a local TV weekly talking on music and it's been great. Hope to return in the new season well prepared and with more stories on music. 
Usually I don't get personal but this time I’ve chosen this path to justify why I’m back to talk and return to my in-depth works on the records that I thought were the best on their year of release. And personally because in fact, there is really another Plan B, and it helped me too to move along. Lyrically speaking it was very well structured, a master-piece and make us remember that there's a lot of people with other kind of problems sometimes greater and dangerous ones and Ben is a 'Pro getting his message delivered.

I'm working already on my favorite 2013 record until now - Nick Cave's Push The Sky Away - but I couldn't skip the work I did on Ben's record. At the time I’m publishing my first post I hope to still receive more contributions from people that worked on the making of Ill Manors. This record was released in a time where the 2012 Olympic Games were about to start in London and it contains a strong social message that I believe you should ear if you are discovering this record just now. This was the return to the early sound, a mix of rap,hip-hop and soul, may I call it hip-hop soul? I've a global vision on music but I’m more a pop-rock man but loved this record and thought it'd win the Mercury Prize Award but it didn't.

So, let’s start with this quest. Since this record (The soundtrack for the movie too, also directed by Ben) talks about the growing up around  Forest Gate in Newham, UK I’ll start not by someone that worked at the record but with Ellie Robinson, councilor and chair of the and young people scrutiny committee and a member of the labour group to whom I’d like to thank for her kindness on replying my questions:

Before that, let me show you the song that made me "connect" to Ben:
Next Post, in a couple of hours with Ellie Robinson.

Monday, 15 July 2013


After this long pause, i'll return to my writings now that my musical spirit is more quiet right after the season at a local tv show called Porto Alive. I´ll promise not to be absent again for so long and i hope you like what i'll publish from now. Since in 2011 i dind't publish my "inside" work on the record i must liked (Hurts - Happiness) since the management reacition was bad and rude i'll restart with 2 in 1. First my 2012 favourite record, Plan B's Ill Manors and  right after the best from 2013 until now, Nick Cave's And the Bad Seeds, Push The Sky Away.

I really do hope that you enjoy and there's a taste just bellow :