SPB: Has the change to more headphone listening of music changed you compose or mix your work?
Higgins: I can't say that the prevalence of headphones per se has changed how I compose or mix, but in general I am always very concerned by the spatial and immersive quality of my recordings, aiming for maximum depth and a sense of envelopment. The biggest challenge is more the common listening practice through small laptop speakers. So often the goal is get a mix that sounds compelling or accurate or powerful through shitty little speakers, and the headphones are often a reward!
Headphone listening is naturally more immersive and has a wider stereo field, because the ears are cutoff from a room or outside environment. I think my goal is make music that is produced with enough power and energy and space that it can work well in all of these settings. It's also fun to think about people walking around and listening to your music on headphones, in totally mundane or bizarre settings of daily life; I'm particularly into that fantasy because so much of my work would be really disfiguring and disturbing against a backdrop of "normal" life---- but this seems quite beautiful potentially too.