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Tarnish

2009/09/26 -Small Update- Sonic (GG) Bridge Zone remix

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With bass, I mean that kind'a low instrument that you've got spread over the channels. It works as a bass, so I called it so. yeah, it's not quite as low as a bass should be. Anyway, it's to loud.

And it's got more bass than I remember the previous version having, so that's good.

Yeah, I kind'a like it. It's not like I want to add it to iTunes, I prefer a more complete version, but I like where it's heading. :) I like how you're improving.

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With bass, I mean that kind'a low instrument that you've got spread over the channels. It works as a bass, so I called it so. yeah, it's not quite as low as a bass should be. Anyway, it's to loud.

Ok, I think you know which one you mean. The mixing in that version was a bit off for some reason, and I think that's 1 reason it sounds a bit too loud, but I'll lower it a bit in the future then.

Good to know some1 else likes it too besides me, lol. Tho it would be cool if others would tell their opinions too.

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Glad to see you've taken this up again.

It's fun and lighthearted, and the drums part sounds quite playful, it's a good idea. I'm not completely convinced by it yet, it doesn't sound ready. The part sounds quite free form, I feel like it lose how to follow it at some point.. You should probably give a bit more "anchor points" if you know what I mean? I'm having a real hard time figuring out what it is that doesn't work for me in there, I usually like at least a certain degree of free form stuff like that. :)

The drums have a machine-like feel, you should try to experiment with different velocities in drums hits in a part. It's pretty promising though, I like the interplay feel that is between the synth and the drums. The idea really fits the source well.

By the time you get to the source part, the synth sound is getting to my ears. See if you can make it less bright for that part, for variety - it's stealing the focus from the lead.

The beat is lacking a hihat hit after the snare, which creates a "stop-go" feel, like there were little pauses in the momentum of the piece. The effect is quite neat when you add the crash later on (the expectation it creates is fulfilled), but I'm not sure if it serves a purpose earlier. It's a very interesting effect in any case.

--Eino

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In my opinion you need to replace the synth with something else. To me it sounds too serious for the 'joyful, happy and energetic' style your aiming for.

One problem with the song right now is the volume. I have a lot of music, and your song is 200-250% louder than most of it. I think you might need to turn the volume down a bit.

Rozovian and Evktalo already pointed out most of the current issues, so there really isn't much more I can say until your next version of the song.

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In my opinion you need to replace the synth with something else. To me it sounds too serious for the 'joyful, happy and energetic' style your aiming for.

One problem with the song right now is the volume. I have a lot of music, and your song is 200-250% louder than most of it. I think you might need to turn the volume down a bit.

Hmm, well dunno, I think the synth is okay. Nobody else said they would change it (or I have big problems understanding others..). I don't think it's that loud either. I also have lots of songs and mine doesn't seem louder than those, or maybe just a very slightly. My problem is rather the instruments' volume compared to each other..they need better mixing. But thx for your opinion, maybe I'll turn the volume down a little after all.

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I worked on the transition and minor stuffs, but don't want to bore you this time with the details. Just wanna point out that when DarkPhantron said that the synth sounded too serious for him I decided to make a more serious part in it thus changing the transition a bit, tho I want to keep it 'joyful, happy and energetic' in overall. Dunno if it turned out okay or just made it worse, so you tell me. But I think I need to change the synth's tune in the transition, coz it doesn't fit in now.

fkyk

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Oookay, progress, good. Structurally, I think your idea with the intro, then a more serious part, then to the original source is very good. The serious part sounds suspenseful. Waiting for bad stuff to happen.

The main problem with the middle part is that it is now pretty dissonant. First thing I noticed was that the new stuff added is probably in a different key than the synth in the previous version, which you've left unchanged, I think. They should match somehow, while avoiding losing the connection between the parts. Some dissonance can be good (well I personally often like dissonant stuff), and helps to create an intense atmosphere. This part just needs more work.

I don't really get the beginning of the middle part with the added melody, those loud "di-dings" and the background wail - it doesn't mesh tonally. (Soundwise the instruments do sound ok together.)

Another gripe is that in the final part the main synth is way too loud compared to the backing. What I liked are the added sound effects, the 8-bit splash at the end of the intro is quite perfect.

--Eino

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Tried to solve the dissonance problem (tho I think I failed at it..) by changing the synth's tune and also tried to fix some problems that were pointed out before like the loud synth and other instruments plus 'seperating' the instruments a bit with panning. Some areas still needs adjusting tho regarding volume issues.

Furthermore I guess I should explain why I made it like this coz evktalo he didn't really get why some part of it was like that: With the song dieing out after the intro and with the splash I was aiming for a feeling that Sonic falls from the bridge that's under construction (hence the remix name) into the water. The short part after that resembles an underwater feeling, then comes my own crappy part with the suspense that was meant to make you feel Sonic's running out of air. The last jump, splash and gasp means that he gets out of the water and continues the stage. It probably sounds stupid, but meh..

xhrv

EDIT: Made a few minor changes.

sgkx

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I think the story is not silly at all, actually. It definitely fits Sonic. Having a story in mind is probably a good device to make intresting structures for a piece of music. I don't think I've ever tried that.

Into the mMiddle part. At least the first note of the wailing background synth clashes with the melody. From 00:36, the bass and synth still seem to be playing in different keys, although now the synth sounds more fitting to the idea of the part. Try to change the notes in the bassline to match the synth, something like a half an octave lower. Often when I've had similar trouble with the bassline or two lines not going well together, I've found I've had to transpose it quite a lot to find the right range.

01:04 it gets more cacophonic. Good things I find that the sound of the background synth fits very well. The synth and the bass start playing together instead of separately, it's an effective change in intensity. Again, I'd try to match the synth and the bass by transposing the bass.

Rhythmically speaking, I really like how the section ends from 01:18 onwards. It conveys the sense of urgency and time running out nicely, and then there's a sense of relief as we get out of the water.

The final part is now much better mixed than previously. The lead sounds pretty nice. The section is begging for a bassline. Also what I said about the hihat before still stands. I realize there's some sort of a open hihat sound there but it's so quiet and different from the closed hihat sound it doesn't keep it from sounding kind of stuttering.

--Eino

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Heh, thx dude. That middle part is giving me the most trouble..looks like you can't learn creativity to compose music. =/ I'll try to mess around with the bass anyway. After 1:04, the bass ends, at least the one that went on previously.

Lately I tried to solve the hihat problem and make the drums a bit more varied.

cqfc

Think I added too much kick to it when the source tune comes in..I'll have to lower it a little. And about the bass, I have no idea what would go well in that section. =/

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Heh, thx dude. That middle part is giving me the most trouble..looks like you can't learn creativity to compose music. =/

I think it's possible, it just involves a lot of work, trying out a lot of stuff without too much discrimination first and then looking at it later (possible a lot later) so you can see what really works out and what doesn't. Or so I think. :) I've just listened some tracks of mine that I did about ten years ago, it's pretty fun, you really can tell now what worked and what was lacking. I don't think you necessarily have to wait quite that long to tell. :P

After 1:04, the bass ends, at least the one that went on previously.

Yeah, I considered the new synth to be a bass, but I notice it's not really in the bass territory. I guess. Anyway, that was what I was referring to.

Lately I tried to solve the hihat problem and make the drums a bit more varied. Think I added too much kick to it when the source tune comes in..I'll have to lower it a little. And about the bass, I have no idea what would go well in that section. =/

Yeah, the kick is too loud, it even distorts. The new fast bass drum bits sound a bit overpowering now, that might be just because it's loud. Nice fill at 1:52! The hihat problem doesn't bother me as much now, although the open hi-hat sound kind of lack "click". Maybe you can mix in a quiet closed hi-hat hit. That might work.

Bass is often a pretty simple part, it's main purpose is to tie the rhythm together with the harmony and melody. It can be sparse (and often should, rather than busy), so you could start by having the bass play the same as the main synth octave lower, but not all the notes, just pick the ones that feel like carry the tune / are enough. I think.

--Eino

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0:20-1:27 What is this?

Creativity - I think everyone's got at least some creativity, and everyone can learn to use it. You've created something pretty interesting that spans over half the track, so you know you can create. Controlling your creativity, recognizing what works and what doesn't... well, like Eino said, try stuff out and have a look later. I also think comparing stuff to other works is an important aprt of learning to create quality pieces. I've been making music for soon 10 years now, but I've learned much more about production during my year on OCR than during those years combined. The creative parts, writing melodies, arranging, that stuff comes from practice, trial and error, and you've done a good job at those. You just haven't done enough yet.

Here's an idea, Tarnish. Step away from this track for a week, write original music during that week. Make a song today, a short one, and listen to it tomorrow. Make a new song tomorrow. Listen to it the day after that. After a week, listen to all your new songs, and you should hear what works and what doesn't. That way, you should get a better understanding of how notes and sounds work together. In turn, that's gonna help you with this track.

Whatever man, learning is a process, and you've come a long way already.

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Thx for the support guys. Dunno if I'll try to work on original stuff to practice, since I can't really compose new stuff, perhaps only add to already existing tunes. But gonna try anyway I think when I have more free time.

About this song, I've put in a bass taking evktalo's advice. Tried to keep it simple but not too boring. I think it turned out good, maybe needs a little fiddling with the volume..tho the bass shouldn't really 'stick out' from the other instruments:

shau

It's only the source part this time coz I think the middle needs a lot of work. Perhaps the drums could be a bit louder, imo you can barely hear them at some parts.

EDIT: Btw, think I should mention that I listen all music on headphones, so I'm also adjusting this song to this 'listening felling' so to speak. Meaning that it may sound noticeably different on speakers.

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It's quiet, but it's there. It sounds fuller now. I like the.. are those 32th notes? I'm thinking it could afford to be louder, but on the other hand the bass drum (which doesn't distort anymore) has a lot presence and the main synth is almost in the bassline territory. It's a mixing decision in any case. Did you change the hi-hat too? Because it's not bothering me now. :)

Re: original music - my advice would be to not try to achieve anything, but just to have fun.

--Eino

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It's quiet, but it's there. It sounds fuller now. I like the.. are those 32th notes? I'm thinking it could afford to be louder, but on the other hand the bass drum (which doesn't distort anymore) has a lot presence and the main synth is almost in the bassline territory. It's a mixing decision in any case. Did you change the hi-hat too? Because it's not bothering me now. :)

Re: original music - my advice would be to not try to achieve anything, but just to have fun.

--Eino

Heh, thx. Yeah I reduced the kick of the drums so it should be okay now. As far as I know I didn't change the hi-hat, maybe it's just coz there's a bass there too now. I'm thinking that I should make the bass and the drums (but rather the drums) a bit louder. I know you said that the bass could be a bit louder, but dunno about the drum. Think that's a good idea?

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Don't know, drums are rather prominent in the mix already in my opinion. Tell you what - make two different quick mixes with different instruments at different levels, set them aside for a while and listen to them later, to see which one you like better and why.

And keep in mind, mixing is usually done after composing/arranging/sequencing/recording/etc. :) So don't use too much time at it at this stage.

--Eino

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Thx for the advices guys. Hopefully I'll get much better when (or rather if) I work on my future works. So I tried to ignore the mixing for a while and go on with the arranging/composing. It might be a bit lame, but here's what I came up with so far:

yqho

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Yes, it's a bit lame, it's quite repetitive, but it's a step in the right direction.

I had a listen to your very first version, and you haven't really changed the arrangement much (well you've extended it a lot, and of course improved the mix). Here's an idea that I might have suggested before. New project, write the melody from memory, and play around with what instruments, melodies, chords, and rhythms you can use to back it up.

You're getting better. I think you need to take bigger steps, but at least you're heading in the right direction. :D

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Yes, it's a bit lame, it's quite repetitive, but it's a step in the right direction.

I had a listen to your very first version, and you haven't really changed the arrangement much (well you've extended it a lot, and of course improved the mix). Here's an idea that I might have suggested before. New project, write the melody from memory, and play around with what instruments, melodies, chords, and rhythms you can use to back it up.

You're getting better. I think you need to take bigger steps, but at least you're heading in the right direction. :D

Translation: dump the whole remix.

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lol, no. :P

"Here's an idea that I might have suggested before. New project, write the melody from memory, and play around with what instruments, melodies, chords, and rhythms you can use to back it up."

I apparently need to add "...Then take what you've learned and use it in this one."

Dude, you need to take bigger steps: make bigger changes, take the source and screw with it until you've got many different versions of the different parts of it... then you use the best ones. You've made some changes in this most recent version, and they're in the right direction. Do more stuff like that, now that you've gotten started. Do it until you start getting the feel for how you can rewrite the source.

In other words, you're not done with the arrangement yet, imo.

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Oh I'm gonna screw it allright..screw this whole remix, if I'm the only1 who likes it the way I'm taking it, then there's no point spending another second on it. It would never get through the judgement anyway.

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If you don't want to make drastic changes to the arrangement, don't. It's your remix, your call. Once you're done with the arrangement, work on the mixing. They're two very different things, and if you're gonna make music you'll need both. Even if this won't be OCR-level stuff, you can finish it and release it on vgmix or remix: thasauce.

Also... Did I ever say I didn't like it?

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