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Swerve Spotlight: HBK - 'Calibrate'

Friday, December 02, 2016
Sydney Platt
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Hailing from Tallahassee, Florida, house duo HBK is bringing the heat to Perfect Driver’s Swerve Vol. 3 winter compilation with their new original 'Calibrate.' Bringing its sound from a day “at work in a phone store," this track layers a variety of echo-y chopped up loops over a deep, tech-house bassline that just screams ‘hit the floor.' The vocal loops have been manipulated so much that HBK was able to derive the song title. “At no point do the vocals actually say the word 'calibrate,' but after looping it and hearing it so many times, the song just spoke to us with that word. Calibrate. Pay special attention to those sirens at the beginning of the song - that's your warning that HBK is about to hit the west coast by storm. Listen to the full track here: https://soundcloud.com/perfectdriver/hbk-calibrate-only-the-beat-premiere Only The Beat: When did you know it was time to create HBK? HBK:  After playing in a saturated market for a few years, we realized that we were not suited for your typical Top 40s college nightclub party. We found to have a common interest in house music - weird house music in particular - so early fall 2013 we decided to join forces and start our own project with the goal of playing those gigs that would really fulfill us as artists. Only The Beat: How would you say Tallahassee has influenced your style of music? HBK: Musically, Tallahassee has been tough at times, but really helpful for us to get exposed to different kinds of parties and crowds. We've been fortunate to not only become comfortable in front of crowds, but also meet some of the artists we really look up to. For instance, Mark Starr was a local source of inspiration for the feel that we wanted to convey with our music. For years he had been trying to do what we are now trying to in town and he really helped us pave the way. Before he moved out west, we went on a tour with many surprise sets opening up for crowds that had no idea what we were playing, but loving it. The Tallahassee market has come a long way. All of that translates into the music, the people you meet, the different artists you see, and the gigs you play all went into the process of finding our sound. Only The Beat:  If you could play any club or party in the world what would it be? Sebastian: BPM Festival, Playa del Carmen, or Holy Ship. Hunter: Club Space Terrace or Holy Ship. Only The Beat: It seems like you guys really put a lot of time and attention to detail when making 'Calibrate.' How did the process compare to other projects of yours? HBK: This song took a few turns before really coming into fruition. We bounced the project back and forth and changed the main idea several times. We try to be particular with every song we make, but this one benefited from all the variation and change. After coming up with a bunch of different ideas, we put together the best ones into one solid mix. Only The Beat: When would be the perfect time to drop this track? HBK: Probably mid-set, once you're ready to start increasing the energy of your set. Only The Beat: Are you prepared to take responsibility for contributing to global warming after the release of Swerve EP with Perfect Driver? HBK: We think the damage will be worth it for this one. Shout out to Matt Willems and Mark Starr for such a fire compilation!
Preview the rest of the 'Swerve' compilation, out December 9th below:

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