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About LjB0

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    Glass Joe (+10)

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  • Biography
    Long-time VG music fan, started out sequencing loads of tunes by ear over at vgmusic.com (sadly a shadow of its former self now!) and branched out into composition. Finally got my hands on some proper audio gear in the shape of Logic Pro X, and now take a crack at whichever tune is buzzing round my head whenever I can spare 10 mins - which isn't that often anymore, with a young family running about the place! Love loads of styles, and always happy to have a go with some kind of new angle.

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    2. Maybe; Depends on Circumstances
  • Software - Digital Audio Workstation (DAW)
  • Composition & Production Skills
    Arrangement & Orchestration
    Mixing & Mastering
  • Instrumental & Vocal Skills (List)
    Acoustic Guitar
    Electric Guitar: Lead
    Electric Guitar: Rhythm
  • Instrumental & Vocal Skills (Other)
    Lead guitar skills only functional at best!

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  1. LjB0

    1. work-in-progress Kirby's Adventure ReMix

    Hey man, some quick thoughts from me on this - latest version definitely the best so far in my opinion! I am not an expert (at all) on production/mastering/balance so feel free to totally ignore my thoughts on this in favour of the more experienced heads & ears on this board - but here are my thoughts! Absolutely love the piano work on this. Star of the show for sure. Initially was a strange blend with the early punchy synth chords, but eventually was loving it. Sounds retro in a pleasing way! To the point where I actually hoped those synth chords would take a more prominent place for the rest of the piece. It's like you've introduced us to the pairing of acoustic, natural piano with 80s synth chords, but then that relationship disappears in favour of natural piano with synth violin & bass. But that's definitely just opinion rather than a recommendation! Overall I wonder if you could use some more reverb in the mix; feels to me like it might add some cohesion, if you can do it without losing the bright, chirpy clarity of each instrument you bring in. I especially felt this during the mid-section when the bass notes cut off after a stab at the beginning of the bar. I felt those stabs needed some kind of resonance, otherwise it chops off the sound of the section rather abruptly. Might also lend more weight to the epic feeling you've created with the piano arpeggios. I also wonder whether a tighter snare sound might work better in the percussion. Something a bit punchier; the softish snare you've got lacks a bit of punch and blends a bit too easily with the splashy cymbals. Something tighter might work really well - and possibly then boost the lower frequencies on that snare so it feels both tight and weighty... you can tell I'm not much of a producer, I'm sure! But the major takeaway I had was: wow, that's seriously energetic, creative and fun, and nails the source material. So nice work, and good luck with the judges!
  2. I apologise for the terrible title. I was (very slowly) working on an Apollo Justice follow-up to my Phoenix Wright vs Studio Ghibli orchestral theme, but found the orchestra just wasn't working. I kept hearing Kotos, Shamisens & Shakuhachis instead. Then when Logic Pro's terrible native library kicked up a few sample-related fusses, I had to use Ruan Moon Guitars, Erhu Violins, and the 'Asian' percussion kit. In other words, a terribly inaccurate range of traditional instruments! Think Kung Fu Panda meets N64 Ganbare Goemon. I'm generally pleased with how it's shaping up, but have lots of improvements in mind. Keen to get some feedback before I put too much more work into it. Here it is: And here are the sources: Thanks for listening!
  3. Hey nice to hear a traditional orchestral mix on here! There's loads about this I really like; the horns section in the middle was especially strong and reflective, nice transitions and clarity. My major thoughts are that the legato string recapitulation of the main theme around the 2:40 mark is lacking expression. The sustained notes really need some sort of vibrato or dynamic push, especially during the crescendos. Given how INCREDIBLE your sound library appears to be (in my humble opinion, as someone who can only afford Logic Pro's in-built sounds! What are you using?) those bits stand out as synthesised by comparison. I also thought the ending feels slightly rushed given the way you've turned the theme into something with gravitas. A bigger flourish with a longer lead-in might work? Final point; sections of this triggered recollections of Tchaikovsky's Nutcracker Suite (esp. The Chinese Dance) and kept giving me the expectation that more melodic variety was about to suddenly burst on to the scene. This isn't really a criticism, as evoking that sound is impressive! But it did make me hope for a bit more variation. Hope that's helpful. I'm no expert! More used to thinking about composition than mixing & sound balance etc. Really enjoyed this - thanks!
  4. I know I need to finish my medieval Halo theme, but this came into my head and refused to leave until I got a demo version down! This is Final Fantasy VII's ordinary battle theme ('Those Who Fight') rearranged in the annoyingly catchy, classic style of 'Elevator Music' (sort of Bossa Nova). It's called 'Final Fantasy 7/11' as I remember this kind of cheesy stuff playing in 7/11s when I visited Tokyo. Would love your thoughts; in some ways it feels fairly rough - in others, like I'm not sure what more can be done with it - so I need some inspiration & feedback! Here's the original theme, just in case you've never heard it or played the game (which you really must do, even if only for the soundtrack!) And here's the demo version of my track (via Soundcloud): Thanks!
  5. Just wanted to thank everyone for the great comments & suggestions on this! Sorry, I've been away so haven't been able to respond yet or make any changes. Tambourine would be great; I was trying to keep the number of imaginary musicians low (picturing a roving band plying the trade in some royal court somewhere, 4 people seemed about right) - but they are imaginary, so I'm sure adding another to the mix won't hurt! I'll play with that for the next version. Geoffery Taucer - I agree, the 'Medieval Lute' (as Logic calls it) in the left channel does ring of synthesised sound a little too much; I was going to add more humanisation to it to lessen the driving rhythmic sound, but in the end I realised all the humanisation in the world wouldn't change the sound of the actual instrument! What I'd really like to do is record that track live - sadly I do not own a 'Medieval Lute' so a steel-string guitar might have to do. I'll see if I can get that recorded too... And yes, I know what you mean on the low drum hit! The velocity range on the track fir that goes all the way from 1-127, but still sounds way too present; I think Logic just doesn't have proper sample dynamics in play. I'll see what I can wrangle by playing with track expression. Want to avoid a mechanical sound if at all possible. Earth Kid - If you play the harp, I would absolutely love to feature your playing rather than Logic's best imitation! If you're up for having a go at playing that part of the track, that would be amazing? Let me know & I can send an isolated version to you! I'll get to work on changes asap, hopefully will have a much more 'alive' version to present soon. Thanks again!
  6. Hey, I’m a huge fan of the Ace Attorney soundtracks & this has always been one of the highlights for me, so wanted to give you some feedback. I'm no master of arrangement/composition so feel free to listen to/ignore whatever you like! Positives: Generally I think the balance of instruments is good, with enough rhythmic variation to sound interesting. I admire your commitment to a specific style and sticking with it throughout. A good piece for setting and maintaining a very narrow mood. Working points: The piano feels thin to me; possibly this is the lack of variety in velocity? It sort of hammers out in the left channel, and because it’s not really using chords, there’s something about it that jars with the subtle approach to the rest of the track. This riff blends better when played on the bass later on. Your saxophone sounds seem the strongest to me, why not put them more at the forefront? You’ve got a good ear for improvised lines, heard in the latter half on the electric pianos - a stronger melodic line on the sax might work nicely. I agree with Gario on the strings; the attack keeps them firmly in the background & a little formless. Considering you’ve got some staccato sequences there, I’d layer over some marcato sounds/double with flute or something if you can’t make the attack dance to your tune (as sometimes happens!) Also think it’s a little long, especially as the later sections aren’t aiming to change up the rhythm/tone. Are you picturing this as a background loop for a noir-style detective game or something? If it’s meant to be a standalone track, my feeling is a change or variance in ‘emotion’ is needed - rather like the difference between the two sections in the original. And that leads on to my final thing, but I think you’ll agree to disagree on this one as it's totally subjective! Ultimately I feel like this doesn’t capture the soul of the original. It had an urgency and emotional element to the arrangement, pace, harmonies etc. that you’ve stripped out. All that’s left feeling present is the original bass riff, but there are rhythmic modifications that change its impact. You’ve also got the melodic lines in there, but arranged to be on the periphery, so don’t feel as present or necessary. From this perspective it doesn’t really feel like a remix (to me); more like an original composition that uses some of the melodies/lines from the AA track. But yeah like I said - you’ll probably agree to disagree with me on this! Music’s always subjective in the end. Interesting project man, good luck with it!
  7. Thanks! No VSTs, just the built-in library in Logic Pro X - 'Celtic Tin Whistle', 'Celtic Harp' & 'Medieval Lute'. I've done a bit of EQ work to balance the tones & made use of different articulation IDs with the flute, slapped on some reverb & used the Spread tool to space frequencies out a bit etc; also switched on Mono mode for a couple of phrases in the Lute to imply hammering on/off etc. Also tried to avoid compressors where possible to preserve dynamics, which generally helps the software instruments sound more realistic. Logic's library has some quirks but you can get a huge range of sounds out of it with a bit of messing around - though if I had a Lute, I'd much rather have played the part myself!
  8. EDIT 2: Third round of edits done, happy enough with it now for my YouTube channel (as linked below) but keen to improve it to the point it can be submitted for OCRemix; would love feedback to get it there! Thanks everyone. You can hear the (small!) steps of progress between versions by comparing with the two older ones on my Soundcloud page - if you're interested! It's one of the classic themes, with such a strong celtic flavour. I originally planned on writing a three part arrangement for fingerpicked nylon guitars, but it kept turning into medieval folk in my head, with a warbling tinny flute et al! I tracked down a few playable ranges for lute, celtic harp & tin flute and wrote with all of that in mind, but haven't gone for laser-precision (e.g. just made sure I could play the various lute sections on my guitar in drop D), and I've used two notes on a logic drumkit to more or less represent hitting the centre and sides of a classic old-skool drum. I'd really appreciate your thoughts. It's only just over 2 mins and I don't know if it's working/finished yet; feels a little like further sections could seem like padding - I'm probably wrong about that though. Not sure how much this qualifies as an OCRemix track given its style, I'd love to know what can be improved. Here's the demo version (no proper humanisation or detailed mixing applied yet, just some basics): And here's the original theme, in case it's not jumping out at you: Thanks a bunch!
  9. First-time post here, but I've been ghosting about for years ever since sequencing midis & entering composition contests over at VGMusic (as 'Spudge' if you've got a long memory!) I've just finished (I hope!) an orchestral arrangement of Phoenix Wright's Objection! theme from Spirit of Justice. I've tried to loosely ape Joe Hisaishi's style from his Studio Ghibli scores, closest to the theme from Howl's Moving Castle, but sadly nowhere near as jazzy! I'd love your thoughts on the arrangement and instrumentation; I was hugely limited by the native sounds in Logic Pro X, so strings play a much smaller role than I would have liked - but does let the piano take center stage. (...I know it's probably a mistake to have mentioned Studio Ghibli, as Hisaishi is an untouchable compositional powerhouse! But I can't deny I had his themes & approach in mind as I was arranging the thing). Thanks! EDIT: Sorry - here's the source VG track!