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 This began with a piano solo. I was trying to get the way midi editing works down in another DAW. Working with the quantization on this. I only had maybe one or two notes that needed attention. I believe I "over" quantized it trying to make those corrections. I'm sort of old school in that I hate quantization and don't like using it unless I have to use it.

The dischordant notes were intentional to give the music an other worldy feel. I wanted this to ramp up at the end so I added the heavy rock band sound. I realize there were other way I could have done it. I liked this odd approach. Not sure why.

Comment suggestions welcome.

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Hi Tim -

Very atmospheric, and it certainly lives up to its title. My first reaction to the rock band entrance was, what the heck is that doing there? But as the piece progressed from there, it felt inevitable, as if the opening 4 minutes were just an introduction. So my reaction at the end was that it was too short, and felt unresolved. You say it's a work in progress, so I'm wondering if you intend to continue it or only work on revising the details of what is already set down.

BTW I had to smile at the term "quantization", another of those words that means something totally different from what I'm used to in physics. I didn't have any idea what it meant in a digital audio context and had to look it up... interesting.

Anyway I'll be interested to hear how the piece turns out, when you're finally done with it.

Liz

Thank you LIz for your comments. I know you hold a high and very particular standard for your own music, so it means a lot that you gave your thoughts here.

I think the rock band idea came from my feeling  the piano solo just wasn't  holding up on it's own and needed something else. I tried a violin part, a cello part and a guitar part under it....erased them all. Those parts were just supporting the status quo. I liked the less traditional synthesizers as supporting parts to the piano. Even though it gave it a more movie like feel, I thought the piano kept the composition above that. I tried to be very minimalist using the synths so that it would retain that classical piano feel. 

I like musical journeys and the piano seemed like maybe a foray into something else as you mentioned. I toyed with the idea of using a more classical approach but eventually decided against it in leu of something a little more robust.

I am not at all happy with the result so far. The piano is clunky in places. Sounded much better before I quantized it. Like a real player. Now it sounds robotic in places. The rock band isn't tight either........so I guess it's back to the drawing board.

Instead of continuing to play with this I might use it for a template and play it again with a more human feel. I liked your idea about extending the end as maybe more of a main feature. If I did that though I'm thinking it might be best to make it a Part 2 because of the length of it. Maybe not......not sure. I liked your ideas though. Thanks!

Hi Tim,

Okay, I actually liked the rock band (eventually), but of course you need to follow your own muse. ;) I could certainly imagine other directions the piece might take and will still be interested to hear what you do with it.

Liz

This combination works well Tim, you have the ability to conceive and execute across genres which is tough to do I think, most of us are happy just to get one thing working.  The transition is weird but cool so I'm not going to question it. The vocals are very nice in the first part especially at their entrance. The piano chords sound chopped off at about 3:15, was that just my rig or was it intended?  The sounds are great all the way through, my only quibble would be the drums at their entry point sound a bit tinny, could just be my less than reliable ears. Good guitar sounds and solo part.  I enjoyed this!



IThank you Ingo, Yes the piano track was pretty bad. Hopefully it's better now. I used a different piano vsti this time.

ingo Lee said:

This combination works well Tim, you have the ability to conceive and execute across genres which is tough to do I think, most of us are happy just to get one thing working.  The transition is weird but cool so I'm not going to question it. The vocals are very nice in the first part especially at their entrance. The piano chords sound chopped off at about 3:15, was that just my rig or was it intended?  The sounds are great all the way through, my only quibble would be the drums at their entry point sound a bit tinny, could just be my less than reliable ears. Good guitar sounds and solo part.  I enjoyed this!

New remixed track here-

The sound and the melody is too conspicuous. There is a little sense of mystery and logic to the piece. It sounds amateurish and not in par with the other works that you compose which I like very much and which showcases your exceptional talent.

I understand that this is a sketch, what you can do to better this piece is to create a strong sense of structure.

Mainly a coherent beginning instead the listener is invited to the party full swing without knowing what has taken place.

Draw the listener a little, let them participate in the music by creating a sense that you are composing this with the mind that listeners will listen to the piece. There are also sudden pauses and resumptions to the piece especially by the piano which gives the piece an amateurish feel. You're not an amateur, you're a professional musician, and this example only gives out the wrong impression of who you are as a composer.

Regards,

Saul

Hi, Timothy,

Difficult to comment as it's still in progress. A nice piano solo. The sudden shift of harmony at around 17" came as a pleasant surprise, another at around 50". A little sad, reflective of the title? The instrumentation seems to be coming on. Hesitancy here and there - whether that's deliberate or not I can't know and will have to wait for the finished work. The close felt quite magical after the piano sound proper faded away.

Pleasant to listen to. As far as discords go, (well, you've heard my stuff) I didn't spot anything untoward. It's melodic, lyrical.

Cheers,

Dane.  

Saul. Interesting to see how you view this. Thanks for your comments.

The hesitations were in fact, deliberate yet I can see where they are working against the listener looking for the music to "flow". My intent is to add some scary kinds of things at those places.

Just some background . Not only was this a trial for a new mix. It was also a trial of some new ways of working and software. Instead of Cakewalk I used Studio One this time which isn't usually my go to for this kind of thing. They added a new way to add Key Script programming to sounds and even have a cloud based keyscripts download section. They happened to have a template for a new library- The Taylor Davis violin which I downloaded and had been playing with on this. The Spiccatto  in places is me trying the articulation programming changes out.  

The rock band was using two other libraries I had not really tried out. UJAM Iron and IK Modo bass.....so I guess this was sort of a hodge podge trying to learn new libraries/techniques with a piano solo. Hopefully as I continue to work on this, I will get a better feel for some of this new stuff and make it work better for my purposes....and I sort of felt getting ideas on a work in progress was probably  better than taking to completion ( in my eyes) and then having people suggest I change things. At this stage everything is still fluid :)

I fail to understand the exact concepts you are suggesting for drawing people into the music. There's the old tried and proven "helicopter effect" where you essentially begin at a low ebb, ramp things up towards a peak and then back off so the experience comes and goes. Introduces itself mildly gets more radical and then just dies away. Is that what you mean? There's also the idea that we can introduce musical complexity from basic in the beginning to more complex as the music moves along...I suspect this is what you mean here. The crumbs one throws must be interesting though or no one will want to eat the meal.Can't be too long either because people generally have low tolerance for a long introduction. I could see adding more instruments to this at decisive places and maybe making it more varied/complex . For those who pick up melody right away and are looking for more, I can see where this might  start to become predictable/mundane. Yet there's always an alternative view because some people love the dependability of repetition. Thanks again.

Dane- Thanks for comments. Poetically speaking, death doesn't always rush itself, sometimes there are the most uncomfortable pauses....not that I've experienced it first hand.....yet. My theory was that in starting and stopping in places I was somehow relaying the not always smooth reality of the process. Probably another bad call on my part......I'll keep working on it for a bit yet. If nothing substantial seems to be coming I'm going to shelf it. FWIW I would like to introduce a little more discord into it. I'm trying but I'm not a natural at it. Getting better at it with time hopefully.

UPDATE- New mix 7/23

The song is very different from the original now. I added cello, a strings section, a flute. 

I did additional work on the dynamics.  I feel like this is the final version for this. I began another project while finishing this one, so hopefully I won't need to come back to it. It feels much more complete at this point. Score is attached.

Shadow Of Death

Hi Timothy,

The colors are beautiful...

The beginning is good.

I did not understand why flute and violin entered and why flute quit..

The violin continues too much...

The relation of the ending (slow) part to the beginning is not clear,

looks artificial...  The piece has to run  into its end...

But I enjoyed listening it.  The Celtic aura is there...

Congratulations.

Ali

Ali,

 Thanks for your thoughts on this.

I cut out some of the violin and minimized violin presence in the mix. 

The violin is a main player here. Possibly I could make the flute more of a presence. Maybe I didn't bring it out enough. 

The artificial elements you mention I'm guessing were due to the bells and harp at the end. I added some delay intentionally to give it more of an other worldly feel. In reading your comments I can see wisdom in possibly coming back to the theme at the end. 

Thanks Ali!

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