As an amateur musician for years/decades, I used to play guitar and bass in mostly punk grunge bands in Japan. I have started being serious at last with recording music since joining Weekly Beats in 2020 and am trying to continue with this good habit. :)
All work done in FL studio, and most of the samples I use come from Splice.
I was watching a pretty cool youtube video about the use of Mixolydian in video games and that inspired me to do this chiptune track using Mixolydian, to capture one of these good old heroic fantasy games, a la Gauntlet 2, etc. I added some sounds of children playing, to simulate the kids around the arcade game. Overall, it was fun to make.
Ah, I also started it earlier this week - I really loved how it allowed me to ruminate on it and improve it. Need to do that more!
I feel like I am really struggling this year with inspiration and with the discipline of getting started earlier in the week.
Earlier in the week, my intent was to make a swing track. This is definitely not a swing track.
I am happy with this track. Not necessarily saying that the music quality is better, but I was able to reconnect with the approach of making a track based on an image, a feeling. I am reading the book Mother of God, by Paul Rosolie, explaining his quest to preserve the Amazon and wildlife worldwide. The depictions of the Amazon, of the giant anacondas in the untouched sections of the jungle, are mesmerizing. I wanted to try to evoke in music the feelings the book gave me.
Next week has a lot of holidays, no excuse to not spend more time on a track. This week's track started on Sunday morning, this is becoming a bad habit. I went with my usual recipe when short on time - layers of breakbeats, insistent electro bass, dynamics, lots of arps, and sound effects. Not original but it does the job, like a good cheese omlet.
Another speedtrash (i.e. a filler track done with little time, in order to continue the streak, but really is not very interesting).
Another track that is not necessarily super consistent but at least it does not sound too bad considering the time spent on it. :)
Back at home with my computer and my instruments. I must have missed them because I decided to go with a bass and guitar track this time. My bass got brand new strings and that always gets me excited to play it.
The AI vocals are from Alice in Wonderland. The guitar and bass are funk stuff and the saxophone is free jazz. That was a fun one to do, I enjoyed the process, which is all I can ask for.
Don’t listen to this track. I can’t break the streak but had little time and only a new install of GarageBand on my phone. Well, I have not figured how to make it work. Probably the worst track I have done in my 3 years plus streak. Looking forward to having my computer back next week!
I did not have much time this week so went for a quick track. This is inspired by old swing and also by the Tim Burton's Nightmare before Christmas movie. I am happy about the way the horns sound. Using a question/answer approach with some panning makes it more alive and natural.
The structure of the track is a bit too basic. The end itself is interesting, maybe I should use that for a future track. It's... different from the rest.
Another track where I did not have much time. I kinda like that seed and may want to come back to it to make something out of it.
I had a crazy week so I pumped out a quick electronic track on Sunday. Not too bad actually, synthwave/electronic with weird animal screams is just like riding a bicycle.
A track mostly improvised. Some of the clarinette and violin lines are a bit cringey but I liked the fact that it's mostly played live on a keyboard (and I cannot play the keyboard, as everyone can attest to).
The main piano line reminds me of some bowie tracks from the Scary Monsters era (not as good) but that inspired me to that kind of atmosphere.
There was a new trailer for Street Fighter VI! I got inspired by the vibe of the trailer and especially of Lily, who is the daughter of T Hawk from Street Fighter 2. Anyway, I went for a rainforest/latin america vibe, with more exercises and practice for horns! I am kinda happy for this one. Also it features parrots. You can never go wrong with parrots.
Another track cut quickly and dirty. What I liked about it is that I used a live instrument on this one (the accoustic guitar). What I don't like about it is that this really is not much more than a sketch of something that could be interesting. I need to get into the habit of starting tracks earlier. Also the sax rhythm is off. Ah well.
A very uninspired track with no time. A full blown speedtrash this week! I hope to feel more inspired and creative next week.
This is another exercise of me trying to learn composing and mixing horns. I am slightly getting better but there is still a lot of work to do! I have just discovered how to use Gross beat after I don't know how many years of using FL studio... Watching people create and mix on youtube is always fascinating as you discover different stuff that might be just obvious! So here I used Gross beat to do some scratching on vocals to keep the track kinda interesting.
I think there is an interesting idea in this track but unfortunately, It's only about 40% done. This is as far as i'll go this week, a track is a track.
I love brass and horns and have always wanted to recapture the magic of 70s motown. There are also some fantastic Japanese music featuring outstanding horns like Tank! from the Cowboy bebop soundtrack. But I have always struggled making horns sound good when using VSTs. This track is an exercise trying things out, layering horns one octave apart, having a track of staccato horn on top of a vibrato horn, etc.
There are things I like about this track but it's still a bit rough. It is missing something. Some transitions are very abrupt, and the rhythm in some sections is a bit approximative. But I feel I learnt a couple of things with horns, so missing accomplished!
Happy year of the Rabbit everyone!
Another track that features Koto, the Japanese traditional instrument. I feel I have started being a bit formulaic with my approach to creating tracks in the past weeks - find a couple of chord progressions and milk them as much as possible with simple variations of instruments. I have hit a local optimum and will have to kick myself into the wilderness to be a bit more experimental in the following weeks! Until then, here's a synthwave symphonic koto based track!
A track about taking the bicycle on sunny Sunday morning in spring, with the birds chirping, dogs and cats. And then stopping at a terrasse to have a cup of coffee which adds some funk to the day. It's a track about enjoying a beautiful day, even though it actually started as a noir detective track inspired by the Wes Anderson movie The French Dispatch. Go figure.
I am closing the year with a subpar track. I could not quite make it work. I like that it's kinda silly and goes into a lot of directions but it misses something to make it work. Anyway, a track is a track and what matters is to finish something and learn from it! :)
This year was fun! I did a compilation of some tracks I enjoyed making this year and put it as a small EP. You can check it out there.
It was great doing the streak and seeing everyone producing cool and original tracks. I'll continue with Weekly Beats 2022. For those who go there, see you there next week! :)
This is another experiment track, playing with half step slides chord progression. It kinda reminded me of Sleepy Hollow or other eery/mysterious vibe, and I built from there.
The title comes from the movie Krull, where the heroes have to visit an elder lady who is at the heart of the web woven by a giant crystal spider. They have to ask here where the fortress of the beast will be the next morning! Yeah, it does not make any sense if you have never seen Krull. I loved that movie in the 80s. Haven't watched it in more than 20 years, I suspect it has not aged well.
Speedtrash of the week! I had the bass riff, loosely inspired by a new track from one of my favorite punk bands. But i had only that on Sunday night, so just added random horror samples, a disco beat and some silly synth lines. Leave in the oven 20 minutes, serve hot. Disco Terror.
A bit of a meh track, not very inspired. For some reason, I had this image of an evening on a sand beach , sand from silicon chips. Which made me think that having chips silicon sand in your shoes must be quite uncomfortable.
Playing with some new libraries, including Arkhis for some atmospheric cinematic sounds. me like.