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NRKulus

Where once Poe walked (SATB)

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Posted (edited)

Hi! I don't post here much anymore, but I have a piece that I'm a little unsure about and would like some feedback on. The words are by H.P. Lovecraft (the weird uncle of modern horror fiction)--please have a listen and let me know if anything sticks out at you.

The recording was made with Virharmonic Voices of Prague software so, while it's better than a MIDI, it's still not a substitute for a live performance (i.e. you'll still have to read the score and use a little imagination while listening). 

Score and audio are both in this video

Thanks!

Edited by NRKulus

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The amount of reverb in the sound makes it a little hard to follow, for me.  I know you were looking for a mysterious effect, but if there's a way to adjust it down a little that would make this more effective as a demo.  As it is, sometimes it's hard to feel the beat.  I like the idea of the chimes as accompaniment.  It should help keep the pitch true, since this is a longish piece to hold the key a cappella.  You got a good graveyard vibe to the text.  Nice job.

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On 4/11/2018 at 3:23 PM, pateceramics said:

The amount of reverb in the sound makes it a little hard to follow, for me.  I know you were looking for a mysterious effect, but if there's a way to adjust it down a little that would make this more effective as a demo.  As it is, sometimes it's hard to feel the beat.  I like the idea of the chimes as accompaniment.  It should help keep the pitch true, since this is a longish piece to hold the key a cappella.  You got a good graveyard vibe to the text.  Nice job.

 

Thanks! I can indeed adjust the reverb, so maybe I'll try that... the thing with these virtual choir sounds is, they sound pretty choppy and robotic without lots of reverb, so it's a matter of finding the right balance. I also think these sound libraries tend to work better for more homophonic textures, so sometimes in more complex, polyphonic pieces like this one, they can be a little hard to follow. But I still stand by my "better-than-MIDI" comments!

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Well, I updated the file with less reverb... hopefully some of it is a little easier to follow now! I also added more dynamic contrast to the recording in the first section so that maybe the phrase shapes will be easier to hear.

(apocryphal conversation between Elliot Carter and someone who was performing his music:
INSTRUMENTALIST: The problem with your music is that if you take away the dynamics, the music doesn't make sense!
CARTER: Yes; that's why you're supposed to PLAY the dynamics.

I realized this piece is also probably much easier to understand with more dynamic contrast and phrase shaping in the recording... but that's [hopefully] where the similarity to Elliot Carter ends!)

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It's quite beautiful and profound sounding..  I didn't hear the first version; but reverb now seems fine to me. Dynamics great.. I hear a distortion twice on some higher voices on the right side.  But the composition, arrangement, and continuity are excellent.. Great work. 

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On 4/16/2018 at 9:00 PM, markstyles said:

It's quite beautiful and profound sounding..  I didn't hear the first version; but reverb now seems fine to me. Dynamics great.. I hear a distortion twice on some higher voices on the right side.  But the composition, arrangement, and continuity are excellent.. Great work. 

 

Thanks, Mark! I don't know if my music has been called "profound" before. Do you think the ending fits with the rest of the piece?

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It sounds fine to me too, i found the choir & the melodies very  beautifull as well! Great work!

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It's so haunting. 😍

The quarter note triplets were really good for building tension. I would've like to see more of that.

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