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All,

I just recently completed two trailer rescores for an upcoming competition and am looking for critical feedback, especially from those of you with commercial experience.

Thoughts on orchestration/balance/mastering/etc are most welcome. Don't be afraid to be harsh or a pedant!

Trailer 1 (Crime Trailer Rescore - All Music is original)

https://youtu.be/Ehx4-_DGLxw

Trailer 2 (Sci Fi Trailer Rescore - All Music and Sound Design is Original) - REVISED

https://youtu.be/sfyYtPQcdpI

Thanks for listening!

DM

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Mike has said it very eloquently as a pro should.

You obviously have the chops and an understanding of what you try to achieve but..........................

There are thousands of others out there with the same understanding, only a few who can think outside the box.

Find a theme (probably simple) build on it with unusual instruments or sound design.

You cannot be taught this, you either have it or you haven't.

Keep searching.

Ray

Thank you Ray.

You are spot on in your post, especially about a theme being simple - it could almost just be a hook that keeps building.

The idea of unusual instruments too is great. The open mind can make the difference in an overcrowded market for sure. 

Ray's post immediately made my rusty old instincts kick in and think about a drone throughout (could be orchestral, could be electronic, or could be a drone with unusual sound design-ish pads!) , a gradual fade in of a rhythmic device that becomes so tense that it explodes into a climax at an appropriate point. It might be a bit cliched, but cliches are there for a reason, especially for the immediacy needed in popular entertainment.

You really can't be taught this though as Ray said, but you can cultivate a feel for what you think is right - from that point on if you're a maverick or gifted enough, you'll be a trend setter. That said fortunately there is enough room in the industry to make a living for composers, you don't have to be the trendsetter, but you do have to be very good.

Thanks, Mike and Ray. I appreciate the thoughtful comments. Just curious: did either of you listen to the first trailer (Crime) or are all these comments focused on the 2nd one (Sci Fi)?

I will be honest that I have a much greater interest in film scoring than trailers (and I do believe it would be a much better fit for me). I am certainly not interested in chasing the current commercial trends of trailer scoring (no offense to those who do). Heck, I'm working on an opera right now, so it should be clear I'm not composing music for financial success... :D

I do understand my style is more conservative, but I also think there is an interesting tension between advice like "only a few can think outside the box", "you cannot be taught this, you either have it or you haven't" and... "Find a theme (probably simple) build on it with unusual instruments or sound design." It is precisely on the first two principles that I deliberately avoid the latter approach.

Poor LvB! how could he possibly think a simple phrase could build to become a symphony. Complete delusion.

I have always been a fan of Beethoven's use of "unusual instruments [and] sound design"!

Fair point John, well said.

I have only heard the sci-fi trailer and was only referring to that. From what I can tell, you have a good feel for the understated which will hopefully put you in good stead when it comes to scoring delicate scenes at least. Stick to what you do best was always my motto but I don't know if the route these days should include trailer work or not.

I do understand my style is more conservative, but I also think there is an interesting tension between advice like "only a few can think outside the box", "you cannot be taught this, you either have it or you haven't" and... "Find a theme (probably simple) build on it with unusual instruments or sound design." It is precisely on the first two principles that I deliberately avoid the latter approach.

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