OK, here's my interpretation: it sounds like the idea is that there is a scene going on for 4 minutes or so and occasionally we get some static, and that is when the ghost is passing through? If that's the idea, then the idea itself is good, but this felt to me like about 2 minutes of music stretched out to 4 minutes of time. If a song is going to go 4 minutes, I think it either needs to "go somewhere" eventually, or at least, lead us to believe it's going somewhere. This song coasts along very casually for the entire duration ... the sound itself is good, but I didn't feel like there was any reason for it to be 4 minutes long. Looking at your comments, I can see that you've layered together more elements than you have previously, and that's good, it probably is a more interesting sound than you had previously ... but there's still a difference between creating an good sound (which you did!) and creating a song that makes us feel like we are going somewhere emotionally or telling a story (which I don't think you did). That's not bad, but it's not complete, either. :) I think you should consider revising it so that every time the ghost passes through, the intensity of the music picks up ... as if we are getting increasingly nervous about the ghost we notice passing through. That would tell a more compelling story.
Of course, if my interpretation wasn't your intention ... please tell me what the intention was. I like the general sound, but like CeeeX, I'm left unsatisfied and with questions when the song ended.
Actually, I didn't really have a specific image in mind when composing this. Generally, I put together sounds that I find appealing, and it's only after I'm a good way through the piece that I give it a title corresponding to the images that come to me on hearing it.
In general, I don't really listen to music for specific imagery or interpretations--I have more of an abstract emotional response. I'm sorry if I gave you the wrong impression with my title.
All the same, I appreciate the thought you put into this review, and I'll keep it in mind. I was certainly concerned that the piece might be unfocused or overly repetitive, and it's good to hear constructive criticism in this area. And I'm glad you liked the sound, even if it wasn't quite your cup of tea otherwise.
Cool sound here, love the instruments and the vocals were great -- only part I wasn't crazy about was the repeated vocal at 2:17 or so ... I've never been a fan of the 'do something repetitive slowly then double the speed of it, then double the speed of it again' that happens so often this kind of music. (Although I loved the vocals just before this moment). I think the reason I don't like that trick is that I've heard it so much, as soon as it starts I know exactly what's gonna happen in the next few seconds of music before it happens. Just as I was feeling like "hey, this is really drawing me in", then it's "oh, yeah, there's that required element that everyone seems obligated to do in a song like this." BUT that was a short moment in an otherwise great track. Nice job, my friend. :)
Great sound, love the combination of instruments you used. I also enjoyed the chromatic elements that popped in every now and again. It all sounds fantastic, I just wonder if the end could build to a clearer conclusion a bit more ... it sounds like an intense 5 minutes of fighting ... but what was the outcome of facing this danger? Did we win? Did we lose? I can't tell from the music. Maybe this isn't a fair thing to pick on, since, if someone used this track in their game, the video/story would clarify the outcome and maybe leaving it open ended keeps the track more versatile, so I still give it a 5/5 ... but listening to it as a stand-alone piece of music, it seems we have no conclusion and are left wondering what happened when we 'faced the danger'. :)
I like the tune and harmony, but I think you should consider using more of the orchestra. I don't think the light bongo-sounding hand drums help this loop very much ... to get an "epic" feel I think you should go with much heavier drums/percussion. Also -- you could double various woodwinds into the strings in different places to add some color variation to the strings so there is more variety, especially when they start to carry the melody at 0:45. Some other brass instruments could also help give it a grander, more expansive sound to capture the majesty of those large, sharp cliffs you have in mind. The solo trumpet is great at first, sounds like a lone hero determined to succeed against the odds, but a few moments of support from other brass instruments (for example, in the :35 - :45 stretch would be a nice place for them) would add more interest.
It's a good sounding tune, but I think it would be better with more of the orchestra involved. :) ... a solo trumpet as the determined hero navigating the majesty and danger of the entire orchestra. Also, it's a bit short. If you added another 30 seconds or so, you could develop some of your material with more instruments.
Thank you for the review. The bongos were to show the area was still wild and untamed; it is the area before the final area, so I didn't want to go too heavy with it. :B But it wouldn't hurt to try.
I'll definitely add a few instruments (EG: Flutes) into the strings for a more defined sound as well. It's an excellent suggestion.
It's a nice sounding song, but I guess I don't understand why it's a piano solo. Seems like a good rough draft of something that's not finished yet. I see that you are trying to quicken the rate of your production, but I think this one would be better suited with some orchestration (which could give more color and variety to all the pentatonic stuff) or as an old school 8-bit style. (And don't get me wrong, I love piano -- I am a pianist myself, but to me, this sounds like a good draft, just waiting to be brought alive by being orchestrated or NESified.) It's hard to put a finger on exactly what makes a song sound like it should be a piano solo, but this doesn't really strike me as one. It sounds like someone playing a piano arrangement of a video game song, rather than it being a song intended for piano. Hope that makes sense. :)
Funny you mention that; I had intended to use more orchestral elements, but I simply got caught up with just the piano. Sounded too good :P
This is a very pretty song ... well played and written to sound thoughtful without melodrama. Nice warm tone on the piano sound you recorded as well. Very enjoyable to listen to. My only (small) complaint would be I found the ending a little abrupt ... you end it open, without resolution, which is fine, but it seemed as if it would benefit by lingering on that chord and trailing off a bit more before ending. Anyhow, lovely piece. Thanks for sharing.
Thank you so much for taking the time to listen!
I thought I went a bit too crazy with the Reverb Convo on the piano but I guess it gave it a sort of musical theater stage sounding? xD
The ending is not finished (the piece is not actually... xD) I got encouraged by a close friend to make a full orchestral tutti ending with more orchestration which I still need to get my head around and finish!
Thanks so much for listening 8D
I think, for a three-day project this is really good ... a nice blend of "acoustic" and "electric" sounds that seem to blend well with each other, I enjoyed the mid-eastern wind/reedy sounding instrument towards the end ... or is it an english horn maybe? i also really liked the panned scraping sounds at 2:20.
As for imagery, I definitely felt a sense of racing through some hostile environment and arriving somewhere more calm, maybe not peaceful, but calmer, if that makes sense. Imagined lots of open space and hazy light in the final section.
You have this nice staccato string figure playing alternating chords that starts around 0:29 ... and doesn't seem to ever re-appear in any form (the alternating chords at least, not the staccato strings). It felt to me like 2:17 was the perfect spot for an dramatic key change that would continue the build for another 30 seconds or so ... if it were me, I would continue the build music there (after that great suspenseful pause you have), but in a key a third higher (1/2 step key changes tend to be cheesy in this style) and re-introduce the alternating staccato string arpeggios for 0:29 layered on top and keep building for another half-minute or so). Especially when you only have 3 days to complete a project, that's a great technique for drawing out/amping up the intensity of a cinematic build. I mean, it's really good as it is, but I think something like this might take it just a bit farther.
Anyhow, overall I think it sounds great. Well done. :)
Thanks for the great review LeoMDK! I hear what you're saying about reintroducing those strings, that actually sounds like a pretty decent idea. If I ever revisit this again I'll keep that in mind. Thanks again!
Beautiful piece ... glad to hear you were one of the winners. :) Very cinematic and exciting. Congrats!
Hey, this is a really nice start! KEEP GOING ... :) There's not too much to say about it yet, other than it needs to develop further, but the opening 1 minute is exciting and make you want to hear what comes next. I think the syncopated, bubbly strings/winds at 0:56 - 0:58 would make nice source material to transition to the next part of the song if you let that idea repeat and build up for a few seconds. It's a little strange to give this a rating, since its a WIP, but I gave it high rating based on how good a start it is. :)
Thank you so much for the response! Yeah, it must be a little awkward to give such a short piece a rating, but any criticisms/ratings are very helpful to me.
I've tried a few concepts of continuing this composition, but none of them have "worked" for me -- a lot of them have involved string progression as you said, though.
Nice job ... the opening's terrific! I liked the tempo change -- a song like this that goes for 4.5 minutes tends to need something about 2/3rds of the way through to snap you out of the trancelike mood it creates and make you pay close attention again. The tempo change did just that for me. I thought maybe something heavier sounding would fit nicely when the slowdown happens though ... something that would make it feel like it's dragging on the tempo? That might make the slowdown it feel a bit more natural. Hope that made sense. Also, what about a short reprise of the freaky piano from the beginning for a little tag on the end? Would tie it all together, you know. Anyhow, overall I think it sounds great. :)
Thanks for the kind words and criticism! I like the suggestions, it's been a while since I've touched this but maybe I'll play around with it a lil.
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