Producer Gold Panda on the “vast possibilities” of Ableton Live: “I love it, but i don’t feel very inspired by it”

“I definitely need limits. I think that’s why Ableton scares me”

Gold Panda on his new album The Work

Image: Laura Lewis

London-based producer Derwin Dicker, aka Gold Panda, has explained his new process towards songwriting, admitting the “vast possibilities” of Ableton Live often leave him feeling uninspired after making music in the DAW.

In an interview with MusicRadar Gold Panda spoke openly about his new album, The Work, and explained why he has fallen out of love with Ableton Live as a method of creating new tracks.

“I love Ableton [Live], but I don’t feel very inspired by it as a thing to create music on. I prefer doing it somewhere else. Ableton, I usually use for recording stuff into, basically, from other bits of kit,” he said.

“I definitely need limits. I think that’s why Ableton scares me for writing because the possibilities are so vast. I’m better now at knowing what I want to achieve. I only have a few plugins that I use.”

The producer also shared that he used Max/MSP and Pure Data to create the tracks from his most recent album. Here, he admits that the layout of the software helps him feel more connected to how he imagined the 1990s electronic scene was.

“I just like the way you have a blank screen. When I make music on my [Akai] MPC, I don’t have sounds in a folder, I just start blank every time. That’s how I’ve always made music,” he states.“I like the patching environment in Max, I like how it looks – little wires going everywhere. There’s something nice about it. It feels like real computer music, to me. That’s what I always imagined electronic music was.”

He continues, “It’s like learning a language […] Max and Pure Data, they both have help files on every object, which you can unlock and take apart or copy and paste. It’s not easy to learn, but you can see how everything works…I like that about Max.”

Gold Panda’s fourth album, The Work, is out now via City Slang.

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