Sign in to follow this  
PhrygianFingers

Kingdom Hearts 'Traverse Town'

Recommended Posts

Hey everyone,

My friend and I recorded this some time ago. I am playing the piano (used Reason 3.0, put a few basic effects, some reverb, just kept it simple), my friend, who on OCR is the prophet of mephisto, is playing sax.

I really like what we did here but it seems like it is missing something. I would like to develop this a little bit more with the theme, maybe have a key change in there, I'm not completely sure. Just something to give it a bit more flare.

I'm open for suggestions, what do you think?

http://prophet.escariot.net/music/traverse.mp3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I like this. It gets a little long, tho. Not even half way through, I feel like I've heard enough. It needs a hook. It's pretty, but not impressive. Something's weird about it, because the latter half just went by without me noticing. I suggest adding more piano action to vary the texture: play higher, play lower, play simpler, play more elaborate...

I'd also consider adding cymbals and/or timpani for occasional punctuation.

I'm a bit feverish, so my suggestions might be a little odd today. See what works. :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

OMFG!!!!11!!1

Sorry, had to do it. This is one of my all time favorite video game songs, and you guys did it beautifully. I had to listen to it several times before I could get past the fanboy rush of how awesome it was to hear a version of this done in sax and piano.

Alright, so you wanted actual feedback, so let's see what I can throw at you. First off, I don't know that cymbals would be appropriate. I can see where that's coming from, and I guess I'd have to hear it done before I could really second that notion. But hey, it's always worth a shot.

Another thing that I noticed is that it's not too long, but I felt like the piano needed to pick up earlier in the song. I didn't really pay attention to the piano part until the last minute or so. The piano didn't carry it's own for me until as late as :42 and especially at around :30. The reason for that is because my ear is naturally listening to the sax first. Obviously, in the beginning, the piano is serving more as a background measure, but I felt like I wanted to hear the piano get it's turn in the spotlight before the song came into the end. On the flip side of that though, make sure that it doesn't become overpowering. You did a pretty good job of balancing though, so it doesn't seem like too big an issue for you guys.

By the way, beautiful sax playing Prophet. I am beyond wowed. It's an awesome combination of both of your skills, and I hope that this either becomes a remix or that you work on it more until it can be.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@ Rozovian: I agree, it needs a hook. When I was done with this, I felt that the piano I played was really lackluster. Nothing special, just a background. Maybe a hook is necessary, I tried adding some strings but I felt it was a bit over the top.

@ Darklink42: Glad you enjoyed it :D, I agree with you 100%, like I said with Rozovian, it needs something else, what that is, I don't know. I'll probably start fooling around with chords and alot of other stuff. It's kinda cool actually, I'm going to be playing this at prophet's senior recital, maybe I can get some newly inspired ideas before then!

I wanted to call this "The Slums of Traverse" because it sticks in minor the entire time but I wanted to give it more of a desolate feel, wanted to add some sound effects but the sounded really tacky. Don't really know about how to go about doing this, maybe I'll start small and work my way up.

Thanks for the suggestions so far!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Anything you add to this needs to be added in extreme moderation... You want things to add flavor, as opposed to adding another lead voice...

EDIT: Also, I had to do a double-take when I saw my name in the URL... And I'm like... "I've seen your name before", then I remembered Brad's "I want to build you a computer" thread... =D

Tip for Mr. Sexyphone: Place the microphone a little further away so all of the key clicks don't get picked up by the mic.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This mix sounds nice. It's relaxing. The problem, though, is that it can get a little too relaxing. Like... it's boring? Boring is a hard word to use here because it's kind of in the very nature of this type of music (i.e. not high-energy), but you definitely need to add something halfway through to keep it from being too backgroundy. I don't know what specifically you could add, and I agree with Escariot in that anything added needs to be in moderation.

You said that the strings you added felt over the top. Personally, I think that strings, if used in moderation, could enhance the song a bit, but I didn't hear the version you heard when they were added. I would suggest that adding them subtly could help, but again I'm not sure. For the record, I enjoyed the song. It just needs something extra.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

"Boring" is not the correct term to use in this piece because I find the arrangement itself to be varied and textured despite the minimal instrumentation. However, what incites XZero to use the word "boring" is the placement of the rephrases and reprises in this mix. Because the saxophone rephrases the main melody at 1'19" through 1'36" and reprises the main section of that melody at 1'36 to 1'42", the momentum of the song wains there and thus loses it focus momentarily. It's not until about 2'00" that the focus seems to be regained.

The problem with this section (1'19" - 2'00") of the song does not involve anything regarding techinical issues, but that in terms of the overall arrangement, it is the section that least fits into the context; due mostly from it's change in momentum and concentration via the use of the refrain. In contrast, however, this section is the most technically proficient section of the entire song. So, what it means in terms of fixing problems and tackling issues for this piece is to rerecord this section with better focus on the overall arrangement and greater attention to the momentum that the piece is undertaking.

Additionally, the piano seems to hit a few off-key notes at 0'42"/0'43" and at 2'31"/2'32" at least in relation to the saxophone.

Personally, I like the concept of a piece that simply involves these two instruments. It provides a refreshing contrast to pieces that take a maximalist approach to these source tunes. So long as this song continues to work on its arrangement in the overall sense and really tightens up the recording, I see no reason why this wouldn't pass the judges panel.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks again to everyone for their help :)

When I recorded this, it was kinda a one-take deal and then we fixed a few notes in Reason. I think for take two, we'll do several takes, see what we like from each, re-record it and go from there.

I think I might go down the road of adding strings for version 2.0. Probably won't be until the summer but I'll fool around with it for the time being.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Additionally, the piano seems to hit a few off-key notes at 0'42"/0'43" and at 2'31"/2'32" at least in relation to the saxophone.

0'42" - sounds fine to me.

2'31" - I REALLY like that chord that's there... Because it starts with a chord that fits, then hits that note, then goes back... I think it should stay...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

oh, hey, this is that song, isn't it? missed this thread.

thanks for the compliments. zach, over easter break we're gonna break this down again, ok? i'll bring my recording stuff home.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hey everyone,

My friend and I recorded this some time ago. I am playing the piano (used Reason 3.0, put a few basic effects, some reverb, just kept it simple), my friend, who on OCR is the prophet of mephisto, is playing sax.

I really like what we did here but it seems like it is missing something. I would like to develop this a little bit more with the theme, maybe have a key change in there, I'm not completely sure. Just something to give it a bit more flare.

I'm open for suggestions, what do you think?

http://prophet.escariot.net/music/traverse.mp3

Might I suggest adding some percussion. Something simple, like symbols and snare, done in a mellow manner.

maybe add some resonating instrument like marimbas, or chimes.

I could write some lyrics, if you'd like. Just e-mail me at gyrrakavian@yahoo.com

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

symbols? like, auditory ones, or written ones? will they be saying the lyrics?

edit - sorry, this is another one of those elitist posts i get yelled at about all the time

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

2'31" - I REALLY like that chord that's there... Because it starts with a chord that fits, then hits that note, then goes back... I think it should stay...

That's DEFINITELY a happy accident that should be written into the arrangement proper, repeated a couple of times and what not. Just in my humble opinion of course, but there's potential right there!

--Eino

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This was an awesome mix. Like you were saying, though, it just needs that little something to take it over the top.

I'd point you to some of the music from Cowboy Bebop for inspiration, especially ones such as Road to the West and Rain. Both are great songs, but are fairly simple, and manage to grab that last little something to take them over the top. Hope to hear it again in a finished form soon!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
symbols? like, auditory ones, or written ones? will they be saying the lyrics?

edit - sorry, this is another one of those elitist posts i get yelled at about all the time

Auditory. ^.^; yeah, sorry I meant "cymbals". Either tightened or loose, with a simple rhythm and a complimentary OR seperate rhythm for the drums.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Aaah...I can listen to this song for a long while. Sax and piano = mmmmmm. I think that at a couple points, the piano could bit a little more involved. By that I mean, the rhythm doesn't get very complex (which is good for this style), but sometimes I feel there should be either 3 sixteenths or a set of triplets (the 3 notes and the note that comes after, 4 in total) in the higher range of the piano, around the octave between the C after middle C and the 2nd C after middle C. An example would be at 1:47 and 2:22, I keep wanting to hear a triplet (but not very loudly) in that range leading up to a note or two in the higher range I described earlier, and then resuming what you have. At least I think I do, it's hard to know for sure unless I were to hear it.

If you do add some cymbols or percussion, keep it very light and in the background and it should sit well.

Also, just out of curiousity, do you have plans of eliminating the saxophone clicks? They are fairly prominent in some places if you're wearing headphones, but otherwise it's not too bad.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

To be honest, this mix was like a "hey, lets record traverse town in minor." "okay." We weren't really thinking too much about all the details, we wanted to get something scratch down. Our next version will probably eliminate most errors, have the ordainment, and definitely have those clicks out.

Triplets sound good, I can agree with that. When I play piano in the next version, i'll try to include these things.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sweet. Can't wait. And damn, this sounds pretty amazing for a "hey, let's just record this song in minor."

it honestly was, too - zach was noodling and played the opening few chords, and i was like, 'hey, i know this song! lets record it!'.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hey, so I was listening to this again, and I gotta say that 2:43 to the end (like 20 seconds) just owns the world....it's so sweet, especially 2:46....

So...any word on when you'll be working on this again? :-P Also, I take back what I said, piano and saxophone is a winning combination and I'm not sure if adding even very light drums would add to the song, rather, I feel it would take away from the beauty of the song by adding a somewhat "harsh"-in-comparison sound (non-pitched percussion) to the textures you have going. I do think the piano needs to be brought a bit out front in some places, but that has been mentioned in a couple places in the thread.

Oh, and prophet, what sax are you playing?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Really nice, an OCR (well, wip) that you can listen in the background while doing something else. OCRs have a habit of dominating all other sounds you hear.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Oh, and prophet, what sax are you playing?

model, or type?

it's an alto sax, but if you want specifics it's a selmer series III alto saxophone (paris, not USA), with a vandoren optimum mouthpiece and ligature, with vandoren 3 reeds.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this