Sunday, May 15, 2016
Thursday, April 21, 2016
I have been working on this song since the weekend. After listening to the recently released Atomic by Mogwai, I decided to try my hand at drums once again. With the help of Pete Davis' Programming Drums with Invalids tutorial, I wanted to do something like Atomic, and while still retaining some of that synth-y, melancholic feeling, as I was adding parts (such as vocals. So Say We All) I started moving towards a much brighter and optimistic melody, and for the first time that suits me just fine.
I hate to compare what I did to what Mogwai does. Those guys are amazing musicians, and I'm just trying my hand at it still. But even then, I'd say I started at Bitterness Centrifuge, and ended up somewhere in between Jim Guthrie's score for Sword & Sworcery, and Mogwai's own Two Rights Make one Wrong. After the break I want to list all the songs and albums that have inspired this.
- Mogwai's Atomic
- Folk Arp - Minor Victories
- Justo y Necesario - Fother Muckers
- Daft Punk's Discovery
- The Complete Vocal Collection from the Bubblegum Crisis score
- Two Wrongs Make One Right - Mogwai
- Jim Guthrie's ever lasting presence in my musical taste
- Battlestar Galactica's Admiral Adama.
- The rain.
- some solo from some song by Toe.
- Vangelis' score of Blade Runner.
- きのこ帝国 - ミュージシャン
Monday, April 04, 2016
It's all different when you are not doing it on your own. For starters, the need for approval is instantly gone. When you start writing music with someone else, it's a process of agreements, of taking in ideas and making a song a collective work. It can be a very awkward process at first, as you basically put yourself out there, expose yourself completely.
We started yesterday, and though I have my doubts, I still think it will pan out and we will be satisfied and proud of what we do. It's gonna be hard dealing with the lack of time and inspiration, and honestly more so with the lack of motivation.
Let's give it a try,
Monday, July 27, 2015
A good, productive day!
It seems all i needed was a little bit of noise and chorus. Even though I haven't done anything that I've liked in the past several months, today i was able to put together, and even refine some ideas, to the point of coming up with stuff that's not even depressive, which, for me, is an amazing accomplishment. It's nice to be working on stuff i like again. So, a few notes from today's session:
The name Cloud Sprites is growing on me.
Transposing all of Crosses half a step down???(!)
Pedal priority includes reverb, delay, chorus and a noisy distortion.
Shorter songs? Also, enough songs for filling up crosses once and for all?
The guitar sound is set, sorta, as long as it's detuned and noisy. Adding lo-fi drums, LSDJ, one synth and voice will do the trick.
Five strings are enough, apparently.
Will keep working. The immediate to-do list includes LSDJ, drums and vocals.
Saturday, July 25, 2015
We are back.
Spending so long with only glimpses of inspiration here and there sure is a drag, but on the bright side, maybe it served me well, helped me shred off the monotony of whatever I was making and make something completely new. A change of name, a change of style, a more suitable time and better, different ideas.
It's what I needed, and I can start getting to work properly.
Saturday, February 28, 2015
Friday, February 27, 2015
Now. Crosses. I've been looking at things all wrong. Post-Rock is not the sound of the summer! Maybe the ambient, post-rock-y stuff like umber's, which is not even post-rock. Chiptune definitely is the sound of the summer. And that's what I've been doing wrong all of this time. The whole point of Crosses is to express the feelings I had that summer.
I want to go back to the summer of Yo La Tengo, where things are a little more upbeat, closer to the listener, definitely more honest and within a sound I can reach, and which I'll be happy with.
The idea I have for Playa Chica, is not a complex progression that build itself up as it goes, like the original one. This time I'm thinking of a compact setup: Guitar distorted, Keyboards, Gameboy and voice.
The distorted guitar sounds better, in my opinion, if it's an acoustic guitar. It handles most of the lower keys range, so it's bound to sound bassier with the pedal and the eq. knob. The Keyboards: there's two options, a very Yo La Tengo organ, "Old Tape Pad", or a warmer, swell-like pad; in my opinion it's better to use the organ type, it has a wide range without it being too complex in sound, and the effect servers the song well. The GB is essential, it's what glues the whole work together; it will be used for phrases, and to handle bass and a very simple beat. Maybe this beat will be backed up with a virtual drum machine at a later stage of the song, but at first it's just going to be a simple, very basic thing.
Now, the voice. I feel like the voice has to be high pitched, maybe even backed up with lower vocals. But as far as I've listened, my voice doesn't really work for the whole thing. But this can be handled easily. It's silly to think I was to finish all of this on my own.
All of this is for Playa Chica. As for Terminal, It's quite simple: It has to be shorter than any of the others, and the setup could be Clean Guitar/Voice/Piano/GB, or maybe loose the GB for the main song and have an "encore" type thing, with just the GB. Still, the main song has to be shorter, and in the style of Kind of Like Spitting songs, with a progression of chords.
As for the other two (Ruta 78 and Playa Grande), I'm not sure if I should keep them as is, or If I should edit them in some way, for them to be shorter or whatever. I'll know that in time.
Ok. I'm done.
Wednesday, September 24, 2014
Friday, September 19, 2014
Wednesday, August 20, 2014
Friday, August 01, 2014
Monday, July 28, 2014
Thursday, July 24, 2014
Friday, July 11, 2014
It would be interesting to do something where a cinematic song meets an indie, post-rock, emo song. Not a combination you see everyday.
Anyway. Due to lack of time I guess, and lack of motivation, of course, I won't be able to meet the deadline I put myself for the Crosses composing period (my friend was right: it's a fucking creative process, can't put a deadline to creativity). So I guess I'll take it easier from here on in. I don't want it becoming a chore like everything else, because there's only a long way from here. And I'm up for the challenge. MAN I AM DOWN WITH THE CLOWN ON THIS ONE.
Friday, June 20, 2014
Tested the intro structure for Playa Chica, and it kinda sounds good with a bass drum beat, and two extra guitars. But not only that, it could even be shorter than what I thought, and the bridge could be something more ambient-y sounding. Instead of a dredg-like bridge, something more like a lowercase noises bridge, which then results into a different chord progression.
Right now I'm thinking maybe follow the same progression than in the bridge, and then, after a few bars, start with the longer chord progression (which I'm starting to like, btw), and do the part I was thinking about. After this, another clean guitar only section, but this time with a faster paced drum beat, building up to the final part of the song.
Right before the end, maybe close it up with clean guitars, a synth, no drums, and a couple of voices singing melodically, so that the last thing said echoes into Terminal.
I'm also thinking right now that to get that fuzzy/noisy distortion sound I'm currently not getting, I should add a bitcrusher (like the Decimort) to the guitar. I will try that out.
I'm actually optimistic about this.
Saturday, June 14, 2014
Wednesday, June 11, 2014
As I anticipated, before I even started, in the process of
One of them, for example is to be something in the style of Talk Talk's I believe in You. Although not a proper cover, it's going to use sampled drums from the song. Don't know how it'll work out.
Another one, which I recently finished (cof cof yesterday cof cof), is something between Nightmares on Wax's Argha Noah, Boards of Canada-ish music and synth-pop.-
I honestly wish to get a hit on Playa Chica's melody soon. I've set up deadlines and I intend to keep them.
Tuesday, June 10, 2014
Monday, June 09, 2014
Sunday, June 08, 2014
It's true that maybe this past few months have been difficult for other reasons (not gonna complain, not gonna whine), but it's stuff like these things that make me stronger, make me want to carry on. Make me daydream about projects, get lost in ideas. Meeting nice people is so fruitful for the mind, such a nutritive thing to do with your time (yeah ok maybe there's something going on there but SHUT YOUR TRAP).
As I mentioned to a couple of friends, and my mum, if things go well (and I intend them to), I will have finished recording, mixing and mastering Crosses by the end of the winter. I even thought of asking people to help me expand the "Crosses Experience" and do a little extra after the release, so people get actually excited about it. I want it to be good, and I get all hyped up about it.
I wish I wish I wish.
All right bye.
Monday, May 19, 2014
No. I've never met Wolverine.
Yes. I read the comics.
This time it's "Cloudy Skies Clear at Dawn".
First off the influences: I've been listening to a band called I Am Waiting for you Last Summer, and awesome mixture of post-rock and electronic music. I've also been listening to a whole bunch of stuff by Boards of Canada. I think that a good way to go with this is to make one of the versions very oriented towards indie music; something that sounds like Alt-J or The XX (somewhat, idk. In fact, the tr 808 has a very distinct sound I plan to use), and the other version (the "electronic" one) to be more oriented towards a Tangerine Dream type of thing.
Wednesday, May 07, 2014
Sunday, May 04, 2014
"Don't walk behind me, I may not lead. Don't walk in front of me; I may not follow. Just walk beside me and be my friend."
- The Ascent
- The Cold Sunny Morning of the Last Day of Fall
- Cloudy Skies Clear at Dawn
Thursday, May 01, 2014
Finally tomorrow I'll have some time to work on stuff. Life is difficult for the failed engineer. Times is hard. NOT. No, not really.
I basically wanted to write about the time I first laid hands on a Moog synth, which was today. I tested the Minimoog Voyager, on a synth store downtown. It was all I ever expected.
I've been gathering circuit information to make a whole lot of stuff. Here's what has been on my mind lately:
- Finishing my oscillator is a must.
- Building a sequencer. I seem to have all the data.
- Building a VCF filter
- Building (somehow) a tape delay with cassette tapes.
- Building an analog mono delay pedal
- Building a wee-mixer for a guitar. There's word that there are some of them on the interwebs.
Also, speaking of the synth-thing (nothing but a synth thang), I learnt how to vary the duty of the Monotron's LFO signal, so now I can make beats with that, and bass lines and it's pretty rad.
That's it. I gotta do stuff. This is what it's all about.
Saturday, April 19, 2014
Is times like these where I start getting worried, because there's a bunch of ideas in my head but I can't quite execute them, and it sucks.
I came to the conclusion that I need to rework a lot of stuff. Everything from last years autumn to spring season, should be redone for a number of reasons, the most important being that I didn't think of them as songs, but as improvisation sessions, and they have no tempo or structure, and it stings a bit. (I just dropped my ice cube, literally) ("Dropping the ice cube", is that a sex thing?).
Anyways, it might be a good start for making some ideas, that are moderately good, into something more ambient/electronic/lo-fi oriented. Also a good chance to test some drums, and learn to make stuff like the Superior Drummer and the Famitracker to coincide.
Oh yes, also I've been trying to cover the new Cosmos theme into something more Vangelis-like (it's probably some sort of publicity stunt going in my head but it might just work).
Monday, April 14, 2014
I came up with the idea so I'll just write it here while it's still in my head.
First of is the drums: relaying on a drum machine, or a sampled drum is the way to go. It's simpler and it's much more authentic than a playback track with drums.
Thursday, April 10, 2014
It hasn't even been a week, but the Monotron Delay came to me as a gift from space (a meteorite?!!1). Analog Synthesis is just beautiful. The thing is that being able to bend sound in such a way, with a slight turn of a knob, is not from this world.
Anyway, I've spoken long about analog synthesis and it's pretty clear how much I love it. However, it's not exactly all that brings me here today.
I spent the whole day yesterday recording an experimentation on a melody played in the Monotron. I have to say I'm pretty impressed by the way such a short, uplifting melody (rather exploratory), can change so much. So, even in spite of all the tech difficulties, and quality limitations, the results are positive.
I told myself I was not gonna upload it, but so far the response has been pretty good.
Monday, April 07, 2014
Wednesday, April 02, 2014
A short, but important one.
The genre orientation it's finally decided. I've fallen in love with oscillators, envelopes, bitcrushers, and electronics in general, but I cannot leave behind that old post-rock love for analog instruments like glockenspiels, trumpets and melodicas.
Also, if I'm gonna have to sample most drums, and if they are going to sound robotic in essence (for the most part), I say lets make them truly electronic, and add bitcrushers and distortions to them.
So, all in all, I'll try to orient my work in that direction.
Even though I haven't been writing a lot on this blog, there's a physical worklog too. And it records ideas I have during commute time, and while I'm in college.
Anyways, here's today entry.-
I noticed, when I finished recording the second draft of it (little less than a year ago), that Go Big or Go Home has a couple of sections that are redundant. It's for another time for me to break it down, but here's what I mean.
Right before the start of the first power chord section, there's a part in which all instrument decrease volume, reaching almost silence. This part is redundant because of two reasons: The song had just gotten stronger right before that part, and also there's a section, towards the end of the song, when the fourth motif is developing, where instruments go silent to let the voices sound clean.
This whole situation is to be fixed with sampled drums. This would also help to change the feeling of that section, going from extremely calm to impatient/anxious/optimistic, and far more upbeat. This would let me add a crecendo bass drum or tom, so the change into power chords is not so abrupt, but still explosive enough.
This might resolve into a modification fo the composition, however not too imperative.
All of this leads me to realize that a combination of synth/sampled drums and analog drums enriches the sound of the song, and also allows more complexity, and is it far easier to achieve (physically and money-wise).
I will look into all of this soon enough.
Thursday, March 27, 2014
Also: GLITCHES ARE AWESOME.
The thing is, the idea had been going around my head for a while now, and today I just had the time and felt like I was up to the task. It is a whole lot of work though. A shit-ton of work.
Wednesday, March 19, 2014
As for Terminal, also from Crosses, it should be a place to experiment with other analog instruments, such as a glockenspiel, melodica and trumpet, but also coexisting with very lo-fi sounds, such as square or saw leads, and triangle pads, and D16 drums.
These two tracks combined shall have a running length of 14-15 minutes.
-The theme for Shifting Lights will be more related to water and the sea (what?), since the sister song is First Dive in the Ocean. The singing melody is yet to be composed, and the lyrics yet to be written, but there are a few ideas here and there. I will seek for inspiration in Youth Pictures', The World is a Beautiful Place's and Yo La Tengo's style of writing, and probably singing too.
Sunday, March 16, 2014
Friday, March 14, 2014
Monday, March 10, 2014
It might be a good experiment, and might even set up a way to combine both lo-fi nintendo-ish sounds with the analog, more classic post-rock elements. Even If i can't record it, it's about time I did something with my hands.