Nick Harvey is a UK composer who has worked on many major TV series including Channel 4’s groundbreaking new series Hunted, and all four seasons of Sky 1’s Ross Kemp: Extreme World. Nick has also composed for library albums, such as Keep It Simple Vol 1 and Vol 2; a double album for Imagem (the world’s largest independent music publisher), West One’s Human Drama and Emotion and Divided Worlds, and European Cinema for Extreme Music.
As if that wasn’t enough, Nick has just signed a publishing deal with Accorder Music – one of the leading television and film music publishers in Europe. In his own words it’s “exciting times!” Here we have a quick chat about his studio setup, the products he’s loving right now and what’s on his current music to-do list…
Hi Nick, tell us about the key pieces of hardware in your set up.
The bare bones of my studio consists of:
A master MacPro and three slaves – a Mac Pro and two MacBook Pros networked together using Vienna Ensemble Pro (all computers are filled to the brim with samples and plug-in laden SSDs), UAD2 cards, Focal Twin 6-Be monitors, Motu 2408 Mk3, CME UF80 controller keyboard and a Nespresso coffee machine!
Which DAW/host do you use and why do you choose to work with that particular one?
Logic X. I’ve been using Logic for years. Why change?
You have recently upgraded to Omnisphere 2. What was your initial reaction to the instrument once you’d got it up and running?
Fantastic, but slightly overwhelming due to its size. My problem with a product like Omnisphere is that because it has SO much to offer, I find it impossible, due to time constraints, to do anything but scratch its surface. I’d love to dive in and get to know it better but sadly I haven’t managed to explore it fully yet.
Oh my. Trash 2 is, quite simply, mind-blowingly good. I absolutely adore it. I can’t help but use it on almost everything I work on. It doesn’t just distort and mangle; tone it back and it has the ability to become a surprisingly subtle tool. Its UI is simple and easy to navigate and its presets are varied and inspiring. Adding it to a channel or a bus often takes me in a totally new and unexpected creative direction and it’s become one of my ‘go-to’ plug-ins over the past couple of years. My soundtracks for both ‘Hunted’ and Sky1’s ‘Ross Kemp: Extreme World’ feature it heavily.
You’re also an Ozone user, what led you to start using it and how has it affected your work?
A few years ago, I used IK Multimedia’s T-Racks to master my tracks. Unfortunately, I encountered a few problems when I updated my system, and, having done a bit of research into finding a suitable replacement, I eventually settled on Ozone 4. Two versions later, I don’t regret that decision in the slightest. I master all of my tracks through it and it’s marvellous.
What are you working on at the moment and what’s on the to-do list for the coming months?
I’m currently finishing off ‘Hunted’ as well as a new series for BBC1: ‘The ‘Class of ’92: Out of Their League’ that’s due to air at the end of the month. I’m also writing a couple of library albums for Imagem and EMI. There are a few interesting TV jobs on the horizon, but before I start on these, I plan to have a well-earned break. ‘Hunted’ has taken over my life over the past few months and I’ll be divorced if I don’t spend a bit more quality time with my wife and children.
Finally is there anything you wanted to plug or tell us about?
As a kid, I was a keen breakdancer and still, to this day, nobody does the caterpillar better than I do. If I could find some way of making a living as a professional caterpillar-doer, my life would be complete.
Oh, and if anyone fancies a game of tennis this weekend, please get in touch. My regular tennis partner broke his leg yesterday and, like the inconsiderate git that he is, he’s now unable to play. I’d bought new balls and everything!
Good luck with that Nick and thanks for your time!