music production contest – Music that changed my world!


In a few days a re-mastered reissue of Underworld’s 1994 debut album Dubnobasswithmyheadman will be released. It is one of those albums that quite much changed my interest in music. I can still vividly remember seeing a performance of the tracks from this album at a 1995 summer festival.

Music that changed my world!I found some old tickets/programs in my memory box, including the Lowlands ’95 timetable where I got to see Underworld.

Not long after Dubnobasswithmyheadman was released I started collaborating with a local guy who produced music in the vein of System 7, DJ Shadow and Underworld. Instead of the usual distortion stompboxes I had been using for years, I was now drenching my guitar in tons of delay and reverb.

Anyway, why do I bring all this up? Well I thought it would be a nice theme for a music production contest. So this time around I would like you to:

create a track inspired by a song/album/band/artist that made a big impact on you.

For this contest you are free to use any tools to get the job done. It would be great if you could include a few words on what inspired your entry.

Note that your entry should be composed specifically for this contest!

Deadline for entering your track is November 2nd, 2014. Details on how to join here.

So what’s in it for you?

Well, I am hoping you are excited to be part of this contest for the fun of it, but if you need an incentive we have another lovely batch of prizes from our generous sponsors.

Contest prizes

The prize pool (in alphabetical order)

  • Detunized: A custom Ableton Live Bundle featuring 50 Instrument Racks from its Live pack catalog. Details here.
  • Function Loops: 3 sample packs of choice.
  • ModeAudio: 3 sound packs of choice.
  • Producer Loops: £30 GBP store credit.
  • Sample Logic: Arpology Kontakt Player-powered virtual instrument and MIDI effect.
  • Samplephonics: Dirty Modular hybrid modular virtual instrument powered by Kontakt Player.
  • Sonic Zest: Complete bundle of 20 Kontakt instruments.
  • Synapse Audio: DUNE 2 flagship synthesizer instrument.
  • Twisted Tools: Bundle of S-Layer and Ultraloop for NI Reaktor + Darkmorph sound library.
  • u-he: Plug-in of choice, a great chance to pick the new Bazille modular synth, or Diva, Zebra, Satin, etc.
  • Xfer Records: Serum, the new ‘advanced’ wavetable synthesizer that’s been making quite a buzz lately.

The top 10 winners will get to pick an item from the prize pot in order of placement; the 11th winner will be picked randomly from the remaining (non-winning) entries.

Contest rules

  • Create a musical piece inspired by a song/album/band/artist that made a big impact on you. Use any sound source or processing you like, be creative!
  • Submit your entry in mp3 format (minimum of 192kbit) along with some brief info on what/who inspired it per email to before Sunday November 2nd, 2014, 11:59pm CET. One entry per person is allowed, you will receive a confirmation of your submission.
  • Your entry should be composed specifically for this contest. By entering, you grant permission for your track to be published at the website, through SoundCloud.
  • In order to be eligible to win, contestants are required to vote for their top 5 within a week after the contest deadline. Contestants will be contacted to submit their votes. Note: you cannot vote for your own entry.
  • Winners choose a prize from the prize pool in order of placement (1st place winner picks first, then 2nd, etc.). All prizes are granted at the discretion of Some prizes may be subject to specific conditions imposed by the sponsor (e.g. NFR licenses).

Contest rules subject to change. If you have any questions feel free to ask or comment on this post.

Contest entries

The submitted tracks are listed below, ordered by date of entry.

And the winners are…

Nov 10th, 2014: I am happy to say that all contestants received votes, and in the end it was a pretty close race for the top three winners with just a few point difference. Here are the results:

1st place winner is Steve Lisenbe with Tribute To Syd, congrats and well deserved I would say!

2nd place goes to DavidF with the fabulous Brilocage. Totally took me back to the early Ninja Tune years. Well done!

Unfortunately Armin Malbertz (Missing The X Files) did not cast any votes, so 3rd place is for Boards Of Alaska with Astra. This track would not look bad on an actual BOC album if you ask me.

Places 4 through 10 go to DoctorBob, Ivan Veliky, Crystal Craft, Enoch, David Rosen, K1T, and SEE EMILY PLAY, respectively. The randomly picked winner is Stan Dart.

I will be in contact with all winners shortly to distribute the prizes.

Thanks to all for taking part in the is contest and I hope to see you again next time!

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  • Timur Arynov

    Jeff Mills’s 6 hour set…I imagine how you felt yourself on the fifth hour ;)

    • He was dj-ing with 3 turntables and a TR-808, pretty amazing stuff.

  • Nice contest! Already working on something nice.

  • C’est ok pour moi.

  • anerandros

    I know the rule mentions that the entry should be specifically composed for the comp, nonetheless I’d love to submit an old track of mine. It meets all the other rules about the group and inspiration. Can I do that?

    • I’m afraid not, it really should be composed specifically for this contest.

      • anerandros

        ok fair enough. I wanted to make sure.

        thank you :)

  • Caligari

    Just one influence in the one track? Or is it reasonable to reference several?

    • Sure, you can reference more than one.

  • Antonio Antetomaso

    Hi, I submitted my song yesterday but did not receive any feedback in response to my e-mail. Thanks. Cheers.

  • black ghöst

    That album played a pivotal role in my life and in my music as well. Great great album!

  • anerandros

    I’d like to know if should we send the mp3 file by email as well? or should we upload it to soundcloud? perhaps a dropbox?

    • Only by email please, instructions are in the rules above (second bullet).

  • Added some more entries to the soundcloud tracklist.

  • DoctorBob

    My track is almost done. My big influence was a live gig in 1975 in York Minster by Tangerine Dream. First time I heard such textural music performed so well. I also have to mention gigs by Pink Floyd, ELP, PFM and a weekend workshop with Soft machine, all of which inspired a change to my musical life (before this is was Stones, Kinks, Moody Blues, Troggs |!!!).

  • DoctorBob

    Is it OK to add some “commentary” to the soundcloud track once it’s up? It starts off with my early interest in avante garde electronica/electroacoustic stuff, then an excursion into some “beats”, then down tempo into the TD styles, with a little guitar poking through now and then, a little homage to Floyd, a brief jazz sax solo (coz I love jazz too!), and finally a modern kick/beat brash end. Hope you all like it, but also can appreciate where the track is coming from and going to!

    • Hi Bob, sorry I missed your question but yes of course feel free to leave comments.

      • DoctorBob

        I’ve basically added some comments to the timeline so the musical motifs representing important things in my musical influences are marked!

  • IrionDaRonin

    So only participants can vote? Perfect!
    This makes the contest more fair. So there wont be many friend’s votes and so on.
    Thanks for the chance, mate!
    Have a great day and good luck everyone :)

    • DoctorBob

      Hi there. Nice to see a familiar name in here. Good luck!

      • IrionDaRonin

        Barely remember a nickname like DoctorBob. Are you from KVR?
        Have a nice day :)

        • DoctorBob

          Yes, KVR OSC.

  • 3ee

    pfff… so much work to do, looks like I won’t make it before the end of this competition, sorry about that! Haven’t even started anything. :cry:
    Well, now it’s only up to some sudden inspiration and powerful workforce to get something in time! :D


    • Wishing you lots of sudden inspiration :-)

  • DavidF

    Hey Ronnie, couldn’t we have all tracks displayed as the same time?

    • Hi David, not sure what you mean. Can you explain?

      • The player only shows 3 songs, and I suspect people tend to play the first 3 and move on ;)

        • I see, I changed the soundcloud playlist format to the old style so it shows all entries. The new style looks nicer but you can’t make it shows more than 3 tracks cause it just stretches the image.

  • 3ee

    wow, just listening to the entries, some really great stuff in there! :)

  • I take it, there hasn’t been a prolonging of the deadline? :)

    • I’m afraid not, the voting stage has just started today.

  • Good Luck guys!!! my track is Enoch – Gift!!

  • anerandros

    I’ve casted my votes a few days ago and I would love to check the current situation. Is that possible?

    • I didn’t mean to have the results available during the voting period, my bad for leaving that page open but I shut it when I noticed. The current results are not accurate anyway because some non-participants have also voted. I will post the final results this Monday.

      • anerandros

        I see, no worries.

        ps: what about the non-participants? will their vote be deleted?

        • Yes, only contestants’ votes count. This is the first time I use a poll to get the votes, normally I just ask you guys to send me your top 5 but I thought a poll would work better/faster. Looks like I was wrong…

  • Thanks everyone for casting your votes, I’ll post the results later today after tallying up everything. Cheers!

  • Updated the post with the results. Congrats to top three winners Steve Lisenbe, DavidF and Boards Of Alaska!

    I hope you all had a great time and I’m looking forward to seeing you again for the next contest.

  • Wow that’s great! Thanks to every voter and to Ronnie. I’m so glad you people enjoyed my track. Congrats to Steve and BOA too :)

  • bydavidrosen

    Congrats to all the winners! Including me in 8th place :-) Exciting! This was such a cool thing… I heard a lot of really great music, and I loved that we all had to vote on each other rather than the usual internet popularity contest style contests. Very cool.

  • Congrats to all!

  • Crystal Craft

    Congratulations to the top winners! :) Friendly greetings to everyone! Hope that 3ee will be back next time :)

  • coool …. :-) Thanks for choosing me and congratulations to all winners!

  • Maxim

    Hello everyone! I’m very glad to see my song (BOA – Astra) in the list of the winners. Thanks to all who participated and voted for my entry and especially big thank to Ronnie, who gave a opportunity for such a good contest. And congrats to all the winners! Cheers!

  • Иван Великйи

    Congrats to all winners and thanks to all who voted ;) Winner or not, it was fun to participate in this contest, hoping for more to come! :)

  • DoctorBob

    Congrats to the top 3 … glad to be propping them up in 4th … note to self: must try harder next time.
    Enjoy the random prize Stan, I liked your track a lot.

  • anerandros

    Well done guys :)

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