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Hugget Zukker

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  1. Promise

    This was a lot of fun to make! I think the large scale form is A-A', where A' is more intense. It somewhat drifts in feeling, but I hope it adds up to a coherent whole. Maybe it has a little too constant thickness of texture. It would be nice if there were sections with more breathing room, but it's as if the piece rejected my attempts at such transitions. It's a first time for me mixing ensemble strings with solo strings. I hope it's convincing. There are some harmonics glissandos in the solo viola and the solo violin. The solo violin even plays tremolo harmonics in the background at one point. I tried to make sure the viola's harmonics melody starting at 1:28 and 3:46 was not too fast, because I imagine it must be almost as difficult as double stops. I also imagined that it's best to use slow-ish gliding between harmonics notes, since more fingers are involved than usual, so I imagine it would be hard to change notes abruptly. Please correct me if my orchestral intuitions are wrong. It happens :)
  2. Rejuvinating Realm

    Ah, this is great advice, I think.
  3. Rejuvinating Realm

    Thanks for the tip! Even though I've watch horn players, I have severely limited imagination about what it's like to play one. I'll remove the glissandos; they're not essential anyway. It sounds more like a fast bVI-bVII-I to me, due to the horn passing through a Db, which is not in key with the melody and therefore (IMO) suggests harmony rather than melody. You had almost the same change at 0:13, except there the horn didn't play a Db, and therefore it sounded different harmonically. Did you find that less awkward? Maybe you are right. I'll try without that note soon. It's probably excessive. Switch from what? What do you believe the meter to be prior to the first downbeat? I have no answer. In my opinion, the first few beats have no objective tempo; you stumble into the scene at an angle, but soon recover your footing when a persistent duple compound pattern emerges. There's another rhythmic anomaly at 2:56 to 2:57-ish where an entire additional beat is injected. Why did I do that? Because when the sound of it first popped into my mind, I was (and remain) convinced that the irregularity is subtle enough to create interest without bothering, mainly due to how the oboe's rhythm obfuscates the rhythm in that part, but I could be wrong about these things due to having conditioned my ears to them. Nice observation. I think it would not transition nicely to the next part if the trumpet went in agreement with the other harmonic suggestions at that time. Rather, it becomes a sort of suspension into the next section: The next melody begins at that particular note. That also has a vague connection to the established pattern of a section's melody's first note beginning ahead of time, heard at 0:14, 0:38, and 1:10. It doesn't sound weird to me, but again, I will try tweaking it because you suggested there might be something wrong with it. After more listening around and thinking, I've concluded that my woodwinds are probably mixed too loud in general, and that I should re-consider all the softer trumpet parts. But isn't your statement false for horns, which are usually labelled as members of the brass section in modern orchestras, but are a stock member of woodwind quintets and blend very well with woodwinds as far as I can hear in, for example, Ravel's Le Tombeau de Couperin? And what about the upper register of a piccolo or a clarinet?
  4. Rejuvinating Realm

    I'm trying to get to grips with orchestration, but I'm just an amateur with little practical knowledge of orchestration (I just try to make it sound good with virtual instruments), plus I have at times a somewhat wonky compositional style, but here is my latest effort. I post it here so that, if I'm lucky, I may receive critique that I can learn a thing or two from. I'm aiming for some kind of soothing and spacey sound. The instrumentation is: Edit: I am constantly concerned about wind dynamics. Since it's very "windy" music, I would be very interested to hear a wind player's opinion on the feasibility of the sound combinations. Also, I'm not sure about the way the piano is mixed. It's played very softly most of the time, which gives the texture I want. This works, because the piano is rather loud, but if it was played fortissimo in this mix, it could almost overpower everything else. I wonder if that is unrealistic? Edit: I have re-balanced the mix to attempt more realism, and I have made various changes, including the addition of cellos.
  5. Vocoder Acapella

    No worries. I agree. A live human voice processed through a vocoder has more potential, and there are of course contemporary composers who explore that. The problem is mainly due to the stretching of syllables in order to achieve different sustains. At first it didn't occur to me that I should simply avoid stretching the attacks. I'm not claiming this is anything special, I just thought I'd share what I'd done, so others might learn a thing or two from merits and mistakes alike, or find a seed of inspiration maybe. At first I was excited about the idea, but then it got stale. Thankfully I'm done with it. (Edit: Not that I think it's not worth listening to or that it wasn't worth making, I just mean that I ran out of creative fuel for the idea.) (Lyrics added)
  6. Magical Overture

    I couldn't shake the feeling there was some hard-to-identify timbre in there. An organ was my closest idea, though silly in hindsight. I agree that the whole thing contributes to the impression, but I'm guessing the bassoons and flutes, maybe with somewhat sudden attack and release, contributed most. The harmonics glissandos probably add a bunch of harmonic complexity very subtly. I really dig how the timbres add up to create a whole that's much more than the sum of its parts, so I hope the tone will be at least as mysterious in a real performance.
  7. Magical Overture

    Sorry, I failed to use the quote button. No, I think it sounds like an organ. Maybe it's just an organ - layered with flutes? It's the very first block chords heard, right at the beginning.
  8. Vocoder Acapella

    Warning: Loud playback. Adjust your volume. I created this crazy experiment about 1 year ago. Just now I thought it would be interesting to share it here. It was quite a tedious process: I recorded a screen reader reading the lyrics out loud from note pad, cut up the phrases, arranged them rhythmically, and processed them through a midi controlled vocoder plugin. It's an ode to the joy of music creation. Lyrics
  9. Magical Overture

    I really enjoy your use of orchestration to unfold complex sonorities, and I hear many interesting sonorities that evoke different atmospheres. Personally, I'm a sucker for those planing extended chords in the middle of the piece. All in all, sounds very out of this world. Very well done. Maybe a stupid question, but what is the keyboard instrument heard in the beginning after the harp arpeggio?
  10. Tone poem

    Thank you, Luis Hernández. I'm working on the score now. I'm not well-versed in musical notation. I used a piano roll editor, and made Logic Pro X spit out a "score" from midi. I have to research the notation for portamento now. The simultaneous oboe notes are because the score generator can't identify grace notes. The viola needs a special clef? Alright. I'm looking into it. I'm also aware that my key signatures have no flats or sharps. It's not a piece that neatly returns to its original key at the end, or remains clear about its tonality at all times (I think). Should I A) just use the first implied key as the key signature for the whole score, B) put different key signatures throughout the score after identifying all the keys and modal trickery it might go through, or C) just keep it as is; one key signature with no sharps or flats, to remain neutral? (Plan C for now.) Edit: New score revision.
  11. Tone poem

    Thanks a bunch! Could you elaborate on the register problems? I assume you mean wrt. ease of playing? I've never played a wind instrument, but the virtual instruments I'm using (Sample Modelling) should limit the ranges realistically. I understand that it's hard to play winds softly in their higher registers. Maybe that's the problem? I've transposed the whole thing down as much as possible, and made a few tweaks, and I think it sounds thicker and less shrill now. I've just uploaded the new track and score with minor changes.
  12. Tone poem

    Since I couldn't find an obvious place for introductions, I'll say hi and jump right into posting music. I wrote this "tone poem", or what-should-I-call-it, for 2 violins, viola, guitar, flute, alto flute, oboe, english horn, and clarinet. I think it would be really interesting to receive some educational thoughts on the use of instrumentation, as well as structure and harmony in analytical terms. Best regards Edit: The score has been revised for the second time.