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"Last Hope" - Action Theme

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Hi all, never really posted something I worked on before so this will be a first time. I recently came back to composing music after a long break and wanted to get something done pretty quick as a 'warm up'. So I did this track.

It's an action theme song, a bit similar in style to what you may find in the Metal Gear Solid series.

The song was completed in 2 days, like I said, I wanted something done quick.

Linky -

Hope you enjoy it and C&C is very welcome :)

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i dig the progression and sounds in general, but i feel like you could Hollywoodize it up a bit more, if you know what I mean. Here's some suggestions for that -

- the beat's cool, but you could switch it up more at certain points, add a few more standout hits (eg. orchestral cymbal+bassdrum hits/rolls, timpani rolls, etc.) to offset new sections. at 1:00 you take out the 4x4 kick to emphasize those orchestral sforzandos, but the rest of the beat stays the same; you could add a new rhythmic layer to the beat that stands out somehow, I'm thinking of hipassed electronic blips that introduce sporadic 32nd-note offbeats (which btw is a huge component of harry gregson-williams' composition style, unexpected 32nds)

- you could also use some kind of a harsh lead/bass sometimes, again 1:00 is a good moment for switching things up. if you did it there it could be antiphonal to the orchestra sfz's (ie. you'd have it play when they're not playing, as kind of a "response")

- the synth orchestra sounds aren't getting enough expression love as I think you want. strings sustains just kinda sit there instead of really moving, instead they should have natural-sounding cresc/dim throughout. I always say you should think in terms of individual players and how they'd feel playing your music, rather than a big amorphous section. The hits at 1:00 could use more meat too: you can layer in some lower, harsher brass stabs, emphasize the string hits more (can you EQ the staccs to be slightly brighter? wide band around 6k). That and I kind of disagree with having brasses play sustains at the very beginning, it sounds more like something you'd want strings to do at that moment. since you repeat the phrase again, you could try having just strings the first time, put brasses in for the second time but with more expression so they stand out more. in general it seems like lots of individual instruments are blending too much, instead of carving out a space for themselves (so it'd be up to using EQ to figure out who gets priority in certain frequency bands).

- the moment at 1:36 where you stop the drum beat could be a very beautiful transition if you offset it more; more interesting pad sounds, atmospheric sounds, some kind of an interesting swell to get into that section, etc.

(...I guess "hollywoodizing" just means taking all of your ideas and amplifying them, beating people over the head with it ;-))

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Thanks alot for all the critique and suggestions, really helpful!

I completely agree with your points, I should add more variation to the song, make it more alive etc.

Already working on adding a few of your suggestions to it.

I must admit I had a hard time trying to get some powerfull hits at the 1:00 section, you have some good suggestions there so I will definitely try to make it more powerfull.

Another problem as you mention, is the transition at 1:36 and I do often have a problem making transitions like that. When you say offset it, how do you mean then? Would a tempo shift, making it slightly slower perhaps help?

Once again, thanks for the suggestions, much appreciated!

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