I'm new to the forum and wanted to share a piece I just finished about a week ago called Soaring High Over Standing Rock. I am interested in constructive feedback regarding mixing and mastering as well as my composition itself. Thanks everyone!

This piece is inspired by and dedicated to the Standing Rock Tribe who are fighting against the DAPL. Starting with swift strings giving the sensation of floating, the french horn playing the part of the eagle soaring over head. The choir carries the spirit of the wild leaving you breathless as you come down to an upsetting scene of the corporations taking over the waterways.

https://app.box.com/s/rcq824b8bwsb5bqmccz4wlstuab4ds8b

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  • Very cinematic. I think it sounds like library music, mixed for TV- the mix lacks a lot of rumbling low end, especially in the drums (Darwin percussion?)It seems very mids focused.

    From a critical stand point (as that's what this is all about) I would say the mix sounds limited- it isn't very dynamic. The music moves and implies big sweeps of dynamics, but the mix isn't capturing that. Again, could be a GOOD thing if you're looking to have this placed in film or TV. But to me, the low end isn't rumbling enough, the highs certainly are not opened up. It gives the impression of a mix intended for underscore. Again. . .not bad if that's what you're going for, makes the editor's lives easier. 

    I think the mix would translate well to TV speakers.

    What I mean by library music, is library music that would be picked up pretty quickly. It actually reminds me of a lot of music from a TV program on Smithsonian, "Aerial America." I could see this playing in the background as the camera sweeps over a shot of buffalo running through South Dakota or something of the like. 

    If you want to add more power in my opinion, the mix could benefit from some clever volume automation. Especially in the French Horn. It needs to cut through the mix and SOAR with that lead line. It feels a little washed out. 

    Composition wise- no complaints. It moves, it builds, it slows down. May I suggest some more creative ideas with the strings rather than lush chords? It works well for this piece, but it does sound like VST strings being played on a keyboard. 


  • I couldn't agree more. I think my main issue is the lack of monitor headphones/speakers.

    David Lilly said:

    Very cinematic. I think it sounds like library music, mixed for TV- the mix lacks a lot of rumbling low end, especially in the drums (Darwin percussion?)It seems very mids focused.

    From a critical stand point (as that's what this is all about) I would say the mix sounds limited- it isn't very dynamic. The music moves and implies big sweeps of dynamics, but the mix isn't capturing that. Again, could be a GOOD thing if you're looking to have this placed in film or TV. But to me, the low end isn't rumbling enough, the highs certainly are not opened up. It gives the impression of a mix intended for underscore. Again. . .not bad if that's what you're going for, makes the editor's lives easier. 

    I think the mix would translate well to TV speakers.

    What I mean by library music, is library music that would be picked up pretty quickly. It actually reminds me of a lot of music from a TV program on Smithsonian, "Aerial America." I could see this playing in the background as the camera sweeps over a shot of buffalo running through South Dakota or something of the like. 

    If you want to add more power in my opinion, the mix could benefit from some clever volume automation. Especially in the French Horn. It needs to cut through the mix and SOAR with that lead line. It feels a little washed out. 

    Composition wise- no complaints. It moves, it builds, it slows down. May I suggest some more creative ideas with the strings rather than lush chords? It works well for this piece, but it does sound like VST strings being played on a keyboard. 

    Soaring High (Over Standing Rock)
    I'm new to the forum and wanted to share a piece I just finished about a week ago called Soaring High Over Standing Rock. I am interested in construc…
  • I agree with the above post in some aspects. You may think "Well, it is all VST library, it doesn't necessarily have to translate to live orchestral."  

    I myself am guilty of writing pieces in this fashion in the past as well. However, as I studied orchestration (I used the old school Adler book) I did realize this is dangerous. If you land a gig for this piece where let's say a director or production company wants to buy this piece, but, they want it recorded live- UH OH. You've got a lot of work to do in the strings to get this ready and orchestrated. Or you hire an orchestrator who will also have a difficult time diving the parts out for the string section (And eat away at your profits)

    If you have a very clear direction from the get go, and you make it clear to your client based on their needs it will be an electronic score, there's no worries. 

  • In my defense, my computer only has 3gigs of ram, and it's difficult for me to use too many instruments before everything just stalls out. I have, in the past, composed using GPO WAYYY back in the day and doing a full orchestration thru Sibelius. Nowadays, given how quickly clients demand a finished product from one person on a tight budget, and especially how little my computer can handle, I feel it's a necessity to group VST patches, just to get the job done. I know how to fully orchestrate, it's just not ideal at this time with my specs.

  • This piece has been remastered. 

    Soaring High.mp3

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