Rock Instrumental on todays TAXI show

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BenjaminDerclaye
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Rock Instrumental on todays TAXI show

Post by BenjaminDerclaye » Mon Mar 16, 2015 5:56 pm

Hi everyone,

As someone suggested today, I'm reaching out to you guys about one of the songs that got broadcasted.
It mainly got "-1's" but that's ok, I'm here to learn and improve. I do understand many people said the mix could be better, which I agree with.
However it seemed that the fluctuations and compression in the mix on the show were way worse than the original.

Here is the original: https://soundcloud.com/derclaye/famous- ... n-derclaye

Just so you know, this was pitched as a rock instrumental cue for tv/film where no melody was allowed.

I would love to hear the feedback on this and see if the feedback on the show is still applicable.
Cheers and thanks in advance

Benjamin

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Re: Rock Instrumental on todays TAXI show

Post by RonKujawa » Mon Mar 16, 2015 6:44 pm

Benjamin,

The mix sounds pretty close to my ears. The guitars might be a bit loud, which would make a little room for drums, which seem a little low. Maybe some subtractive EQ on some instruments to make room for others.

Arrangement wise, the staccato rhythm guitars got a little monotonous to me. I think you've done a good job of staying in one rocking, energetic mood, but I think the track could benefit from some dynamic changes, taking instruments out. It's like it's on 11 from start to finish.

I didn't hear/see the comments on Taxi TV, so I can't really confirm or contradict what was said.

Ron

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Re: Rock Instrumental on todays TAXI show

Post by BenjaminDerclaye » Mon Mar 16, 2015 6:54 pm

Thanks for the feedback Ron. You're right about the monotonous feel of the song. I tried to put improve that with new instruments (organ, theremyn, etc..) but it didn't stick out enough to be perceived as a "new part" in the song.

The thing that made me panic me the most is the fact that the drums would disappear completely in certain parts during the broadcast. Hence why I think most "-1's" were absolutely correct. However, the original is not that squashed at all and doesn't distort, especially not to todays rock-standards.

Again, I do agree with you that the song could be improved, arrangement and structure-wise. Thanks for your feedback, I do appreciate it!
Cheers

Benjamin

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Re: Rock Instrumental on todays TAXI show

Post by Paulie » Mon Mar 16, 2015 7:24 pm

I was in the chat room tonight and just listened to it again. The mix sounds a ton better in earphones than through the triple negative of monitors going through laptop mic going through upstream coming out of my computer speaker :-)

I think that the cue is long, more than 4 minutes. I've heard that you should try to keep them around 2-minutes unless specifically told to do otherwise. During the show tonight I didn't hear the part about this tune not being allowed to have a melody. I can see each section actually being cut in half.

I think the quarter note power chords get old after a while, especially with no harmonic changes. There was no harmonic B section or bridge or any departure. Maybe go to the minor three chord or the four chord or something just to mix it up a bit. Or, add another layer while bringing something else down in the mix. I was teased by the Wurlitzer, but then it would go away.

From a mixing perspective, I would have liked to hear more pop from the snare and thump from the bass drum. I like the bass sound. In the middle some of it gets chaotic, which is what I typed in the chat room. Need to find a way to let those multiple instruments play together without stepping on each other.

Then again, I'm brand spankin' new here and haven't even submitted anything yet. I'm just commenting on what I hear. Over all a good cue that I think can be worked into a better state. Thanks for submitting it!
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Re: Rock Instrumental on todays TAXI show

Post by RockChild56 » Mon Mar 16, 2015 7:29 pm

Hey Benjamin.

Yea this sounds a lot different than on the show. On the show it sounded Over Compressed in spots.
I agree with Ron the Guitars are a bit loud and I think there were many comments about the high pitched sound (whistles) I guess it is an Organ it sounded odd. But listening here it fits in better.

Good Luck man,

EJB
E J Bell

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Re: Rock Instrumental on todays TAXI show

Post by BenjaminDerclaye » Mon Mar 16, 2015 8:50 pm

Thanks for the feedback guys. Very valid points and definitely worth a second look at the arrangements and structure.

You were right, it wasn't mentioned during the show that it had to be a 100% instrumental with no melody.
It did feel a bit embarrassing during the show and was starting to severely question my mix and ears. :D

By the way, the Wully is actually a distorted organ and the "whistling' was a theremyne.

I appreciate it. Cheers

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Re: Rock Instrumental on todays TAXI show

Post by andygabrys » Mon Mar 16, 2015 9:23 pm

sounds pretty good with the following caveats:

the bass and kick drum are not very well married together sound wise. The kick is thin and little bottom, whereas the bass is very fat. dropping the bass level a couple db, dipping at 200 hz on the bass, adding some parallel distortion would keep the aggressive sound, and let the kick shine through more. Adding some +/- 65 hz on the kick will help it feel like it has more bottom. If that isn't enough compressing the bass side chained to the kick can help the kick shine through and keep it punchy while still have a fat bottom.

Dropping the bass a few db will likely make the guitars seem a little loud, and dropping them a db or 2 would help too. Then the drums would be more present throughout.

arrangement:

already touched on above - a "cue" is usually just over 2 minutes long.

And usually there is some kind of development every 4 or 8 bars - doubling something with a different sound, adding another layer, dropping something out, change of register, an edit point - anything. This can make you be successful with a cue that even is just an A section that repeats. Other cues go A, B, A, B, etc. Only if you are trying to mimic an actual song form do you go to a bridge. Its often said that putting in a bridge (C section) in an instrumental is a reason for the editor to cut the cue off there and go to a different cue. I guess usually cause that C section is another musical idea, and maybe the vibe changes significantly.

Concerning number of parts - Its fantasy, its not lives - there doesn't have to be only 2 guitars. There can be 10 if it sounds right. Then at other points it might be one guitar with drums.

Something that some people over look as well is to arrange the stereo field of the cue - like a mono guitar in the center exploding into wide panned double guitars in the chorus can be very effective. If everything is doubled big and wide, there is no contrast. Sometimes that contrast can put a cue that is just A, A, A, A over and make it sound better IMO.

Melody: here's my perspective -

A conventional melody like what is sung on a song may not work for an instrumental, cause then it could sound like smooth jazz :lol: - and there are not too many solo saxophones in contemporary music (except for M83 Midnight city and Katy Perry's Last friday night lol)

but what is a melody? A hook.

How many different ways can you make a hook? Rhythm, melody, harmony, instrumental chords, sound fx - so its pretty fertile ground to come up with a hook.

And there is a difference between a song "bed" (like a song with the vocal removed) vs. an instrumental "cue" where there is something to hold the listeners interest, or at least make it sound full enough like a song when placed behind dialogue that it could be a song, yet doesn't compete with the dialogue.

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Re: Rock Instrumental on todays TAXI show

Post by BenjaminDerclaye » Tue Mar 17, 2015 1:45 am

Thanks Andy (and everyone) for the feedback and elaborate advice. I'll definitely try your advice when opening the session again. I'll come back with a revised version as soon as possible. By the way, that song is pending for a pitch as we speak so I'll definitely update you guys on that. Unlikely it will get accepted though.

In terms of length, when they say "full length cues" does that mean it have to be around the 2min mark? I was thinking if some pitches are for artists/bands or even tv/film, surely they might sometimes want something thats normal average song-length right? Or am I completely missing the ball here?

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Re: Rock Instrumental on todays TAXI show

Post by andygabrys » Tue Mar 17, 2015 6:34 am

Sometimes things are clearer when you cut and paste the listing text into a post.

It's easier to see the issue in context.

Things like a company that is looking for an instrumental "cue" vs. something more like an instrumental that feels more like a song "song" and what kind of thing you would put forward for an "artist" pitch.

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Re: Rock Instrumental on todays TAXI show

Post by eeoo » Tue Mar 17, 2015 8:24 am

Just chiming in to let you know that you can replace your file even after the submission deadline and there's a good chance the screener will hear the new version.

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