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Credits & Info

Date
09/23/2012
File Info
Song
8.8 MB
3 min 52 sec
Score
4.47 / 5.00

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Licensing Terms

Attribution:
You must give credit to the artist.
Noncommercial:
You may not use this work for commercial purposes unless you make specific arrangements with the artist.
Share Alike:
If you alter, transform, or build upon this image, you may distribute the resulting creation only under a license identical to this one.
Score:
Rated 4.47 / 5 stars
Plays & Downloads:
9,580 Plays | 507 Downloads
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Genres:
Other - World
Tags:
happy
native
tribal
ethnic

Author Comments

EDIT: Changed some stuff. I added two more instruments - a kalimba from Ra and a Chinese noisemaker from Stormdrum 2. I also fixed lots of things that the reviewers pointed out, such as the unrealistic strings at around 1:20, the lack of humanisation in one of the pan flute runs, the lack of new stuff in the second climax and the lack of extra percussion around 1:20 - 1:22. In addition to that you'll be hearing a lot more subtle details, including nature FX if you listen to it as hard as you can without hurting yourself. Thanks to everyone who posted criticism on this, it really helped! Oh and clear your cache if you've heard the older version of this so that you'll be able to hear the new one. These additions have increased the total time spent to 35 hours 35 minutes, and the total patterns to 372!

Phew. This is another really big piece of work! Made for a school project that required me to make a piece of music. Since it's not a personal project I worked very very hard on it to make sure it's the best quality I can possibly make it to be. Let me point out before I get to the details that this is not the final version! I'm stressing the importance of peer review in this project and therefore I'll take any criticism and improve the song based on suggestions.

So, basically with this track I wanted to reflect an ecosystem. The key feature of an ecosystem is harmony; a functioning habitat where different organisms and objects compliment each other and allow for progression and survival. That's pretty much what I tried to showcase. Everything is very harmonious and I tried to make all the instruments compliment each other. Furthermore, you'll hear lots of little melodic motifs integrated with each other and combined together, to really highlight the unity of an ecosystem. However, an ecosystem is also diverse, so you're going to hear plenty of different musical styles playing here.

I tried to go for an organic sound with probably the most woodwind usage you'll ever hear in any of my songs. It's very percussion-oriented with congas and bongos and all sorts of tribal percussion. I even added some mallets, but there's a heavy orchestral influence too, because orchestral is pretty much the only thing I'm good at haha.

Here's a list of all the VSTs I used and which instruments I used them for:

East/West Symphonic Orchestra Silver:
Violins/violas (legato, staccato and pizzicato), cellos (legato and staccato), double bass, trumpets, French horns (legato and clusters), trombones, flute (legato and staccato), oboe, clarinet (legato and staccato), bassoon, xylophone, glockenspiel, harp, men's choir, triangle, snare, timpani and orchestral cymbals.

East/West Ra:
Ney flute, pan flute, didgeridoo, guitar.

East/West Stormdrum 2:
Shaker, congas, djembe, earthquake ensemble, Godzilla hits, cymbal roll and gong.

Then I used random free drum samples for the wind chimes.

I used FL Studio 10 to make this. It took 318 patterns, 51 automation clips and a whopping 32 hours and 45 minutes to make. The only track of mine that took longer than that (roughly 36 hours) is Trinity and that's over twice as long as this track. So yeah you can imagine how much work I put into this.

I'd like to thank a few people for giving me tonnes of feedback. SkyeWintrest, camoshark, Buoy, Back-From-Purgatory, Blackhole12 and Echo all deserve my thanks for giving me so much valuable feedback. Zero-Flare, Darrenkerwin and snuitergup also deserve mentions for giving me feedback despite not being musicians themselves. Without their feedback, I can guarantee this track wouldn't be what it is today.

That's all I've got to say! Thanks a lot for listening, and like I said, reviews are very much appreciated!

Reviews


MetalRenardMetalRenard

Rated 5 / 5 stars

Well I think you've had all the constructive criticism you need so I'm just going to say you did a great job on this. Good luck with your school project.
I'm kinda jealous you have access to all those lovely instruments through school that I have to work hard to get. :P


Step responds:

Hey I don't learn music at school! :P

I wish I did but there aren't any decent music colleges here... not like Berklee, for example. Almost nobody here my age in Malta is a musician which is a shame; but yeah it meant I had to buy the lovely instruments too haha.

Thanks for the review; if you have any criticism I'd still love to hear it, the more the merrier.

Thanks again!


KrichotomyKrichotomy

Rated 5 / 5 stars

Wow. An ecosystem. I hear it.

"However, an ecosystem is also diverse, so you're going to hear plenty of different musical styles playing here." - I don't here a lot of variance in musical style. I feel Trinity far better showcases that design specification. But with that much variation it might begin to sound like /multiple/ ecosystems. :D

Very nice work. I'm not going to ask you to change anything. Grin.


Step responds:

Hehe thanks!

Yeah I agree it's not as diverse as Trinity. Rather than different styles it's probably a better idea to say different moods haha. Although the orchestral 'epic' part is a pretty drastic change in style. I just tried to make this diverse while still having it make sense musically.

Thanks again, I'm glad you liked it :3.


SkyeWintSkyeWint

Rated 5 / 5 stars

Hallo thar Step! Allow me to return your favor that did NOT happen.

The Good: There is too much good about this to fit in the character limit, so I'm going to try to get through these quickly and get to things I think could be improved.
-That intro is awesome, though I think I already told you that.
-Staccato woodwinds are surprisingly awesome, I really really liked them.
-That guitar has a really tasty sound to it, it's making me consider getting Ra again.
-Your main melodies are sweeeet.
-I particularly like the mallets, and the way they're used. Of course, I do play mallets, so I suppose I'd be a bit biased about that, but... the reverb on them is REALLY cool.
-The overall rise and fall of this song is very nicely done, as is the combination of the different melodies. The other small rises and falls within the overall action make it more entertaining to listen to.
-I personally really like how the overall sound just slowly goes down kinda like it opened up with. It's very satisfying to my ears.
-Mixing is clean, sweet, and pretty. I am very pleased with it.
-Gotta agree with Buoy, that little flutter at 2:52 is SO nice.

The Not-So-Good: It has to come sooner or later. I'm going to be nitpicking to an insane point here, so sorry in advance.
-As much as I really like the arpeggio at around 1:02, it REALLY does need some 'mouse-fucking' done to it to change the velocities and definitely the timing of the notes.
-At around 1:20-1:22, the strings sound obviously faked. The extremely quick, seemingly-staccato diminuendo right before the equally quick staccato could have been done a bit better. It's mainly the staccato-like diminuendo that's the problem, so what I'd do is lessen the volume right before it does down rather than building it up immediately prior to letting it go.
-This is more of an optional thing. I personally think the syncopation at 1:10-1:13 is slightly offputting, and since this is all about harmony, making things offputting is not the best. Rhythm can be 'dissonant', in a way, just like harmony.
-I can only think of one way to improve the guitar, and that is this: Slide notes every once in awhile.
-I like the little ritardando at 2:42-2:45. However, here's a little tip - make it slightly more pronounced. That will make it easier for the people without a musician's ear to be able to hear it better without going "wait why did the groove go all weird here".
-The last iteration of the melody at 3:03-3:24 deserves more than a few very small variations. Try adding a rainstick with delay on it in the background instead of the shaker (or with the shaker turned down). Also try perhaps shifting instruments from the foreground to the background and back, giving each one a little feature. As in: The flute has the main melody initially, but then push that to the background and bring out the mallets, then push that back and bring out the percussion, keeping the end of that little bit the same.

Overall: Wow, I love this. Downloaded, faved, 5'd, and here's that review I promised. Yeah tons of nitpicky stuff. Anyway, I'm off to tell Captain Planet who should make his new theme song.

-Your Mr. Friend from the RRC, Skye-


People find this review helpful!
Step responds:

"Hallo thar Step! Allow me to return your favor that did NOT happen."

Ohoho I see what you did there :3. Thanks for reviewing man!

"-That intro is awesome"

Sweet! I'm not usually very good at intros, or at least I don't think I am. I guess I got lucky!

"Staccato woodwinds are surprisingly awesome"

I love staccato woodwinds. And woodwinds in general. Of course I still prefer strings (because strings are so much more dynamic and powerful) and piano remains my favourite instrument, but yeah, those woodwinds are awesome! Flute and bassoon are my two favourites from the woodwind family.

"That guitar has a really tasty sound to it"

Yeah! It's the Washburn guitar; my favourite ever guitar sample ever. I love it and I'm so glad Ra includes it. Blackhole12 says it's too mono but my deaf ear is like "I BEG TO DIFFER" so yeah.

"Your main melodies are sweeeet."

Thank you :3.

"I particularly like the mallets"

This is actually one of my first times using mallets so much (before I just included little sections with them).

"The overall rise and fall of this song is very nicely done"

Yeah, rises and falls are awesome. I include them in like all of my orchestral songs now.

"I personally really like how the overall sound just slowly goes down kinda like it opened up with. It's very satisfying to my ears."

That's great to hear! Buoy seems to disagree but since you like it then it's probably moot and not worth changing haha.

"Mixing is clean, sweet, and pretty. I am very pleased with it."

Woo!

"that little flutter at 2:52 is SO nice."

Yeah I have to add more of that stuff in my next version of this. Details, details, details.

"As much as I really like the arpeggio at around 1:02, it REALLY does need some 'mouse-fucking' done to it "

I totally agree. I'll work on that! A pretty minor issue so it shouldn't take long.

"At around 1:20-1:22, the strings sound obviously faked."

Hm, what do you mean about the diminuendo? There's a quick crescendo there but no diminuendo... I think! Although yeah they do sound fake :3.

"I personally think the syncopation at 1:10-1:13 is slightly offputting"

Heh alright! I'll see if I can change that!

"Slide notes every once in awhile."

I did slide them a little in the guitar solo... well, sorta slide them. I wish I could slide them more but it's SO hard to make them sound realistic since Ra doesn't have a sliding articulation for this guitar, as far as I know.

"I like the little ritardando at 2:42-2:45. However, here's a little tip - make it slightly more pronounced.

Yes, I like this idea. I'll try that out!

"The last iteration of the melody at 3:03-3:24 deserves more than a few very small variations."

Well there are quite a few variations; the background mallets are entirely changed and I threw in quite a few new melodic changes. But yeah it needs something more to it to differentiate it from the first climax. I'll see what I can do!

"Overall: Wow, I love this. Downloaded, faved, 5'd, and here's that review I promised. Yeah tons of nitpicky stuff. Anyway, I'm off to tell Captain Planet who should make his new theme song."

I repeat for the third time. YOU'RE AWESOME.

Thanks so much for reviewing! I'm glad you liked it.


BuoyBuoy

Rated 4.5 / 5 stars

These instruments are wonderful, the heavily reverbed percussion do create a certain rainforest vibe. They also play with each other really nicely, I love how the guitar and the mallet instruments play appropriate variations of the same theme and complement each other. I love the melodies you're using too, the ones at 0:22 and 0:32 are wonderful and really memorable. So are the ones later on. They're awesome.

Everything is.
The dorian-ness of it all is good.

Well I think you might want to liven up that arpeggio at 1:02 a bit, cause it's 100% quantized feels a lot more like a mechanical scale run than an actual defined melody like the super strong one at 0:32. I'd either change up the timing of some notes or switch it out entirely. I love the dissonant chord at 1:21. According to your description/the background of the tune, it kinda sounds like an unwanted or unbalanced element in the ecosystem that swiftly gets balanced out after a second. Don't be afraid to really emphasize that by making it louder, since you keep it so brief anyway.

The introduction of the more standard orchestral instruments sounds really nice, and in this whole ecosystem allegory it's sounds a bit like you're zooming outwards and showing the grandeur of the habitat's biological machinery in its entirety, whereas earlier you were kinda focusing on a smaller level of it and looking at relationships between individual creatures. That's neat

The strings at 2:00 are really warm and big, I wish you had more of it. The calm part from 2:11 is kinda progrocky actually, since everything is really restrained and subtle and it has a hint of improvisation. I like the harmonized thing at 2:18 and then 2:23, it really fits your description. The transition that happens within [2:42 , 2:48] is really great, I love how easily you bring back the original melody. The last reiteration of the main theme didn't really bring too much new stuff to the table except some small variations on the theme, so maybe add something more hectic there to spice things up. The ending is pretty okay but it just kinda dies out a bit since it gradually goes down in intensity.

I really really like the little detail at 2:52 where the guitar plays a high A and there's this synthish fluttering sound behind it, and together it sounds exactly like what water droplets bouncing off leaves looks like. More of that kind of stuff would be awesome and add another layer to the whole "cooperating ecosystem" feel.

The mixing and production pretty perfect so I don't think you need to think much about that.


Step responds:

OMG dude I just remembered how much I miss your reviews. Amazing review, thanks so much. I need to review one of your tracks again sometime.

COMMENCE OPERATION QUOTE RESPOND.

"These instruments are wonderful"

Thanks goes to the VST of the East and West variety.

"I love how the guitar and the mallet instruments play appropriate variations of the same theme and complement each other."

Very glad you noticed that; it's not often I make those kinds of background elements because I can harmonise just as well as a minor 2nd interval can... that is, not that well at all.

"I love the melodies you're using too, the ones at 0:22 and 0:32 are wonderful and really memorable. So are the ones later on. They're awesome."

Woo, thanks! Feels good to make something original after all those remixes haha.

"Well I think you might want to liven up that arpeggio at 1:02 a bit"

Good point. I'll do that!

"I love the dissonant chord at 1:21."

Yeah thank Skye for that. He's the one who said "there needs to be something playing before that massive hit" so I decided to throw something dissonant in there for once. I'll make it louder, I agree it's waaaay too quiet.

"The introduction of the more standard orchestral instruments sounds really nice, and in this whole ecosystem allegory it's sounds a bit like you're zooming outwards and showing the grandeur of the habitat's biological machinery in its entirety, whereas earlier you were kinda focusing on a smaller level of it and looking at relationships between individual creatures. That's neat"

Best. Comparison. Ever.

"The strings at 2:00 are really warm and big, I wish you had more of it."

Yeah, those are cellos. I love their sound but I didn't use them much in this particular track (OK that's a lie, I used them a lot, but at considerably low volume), reason being the mallets and guitar and stuff provided plenty of depth already and throwing in any more depth would mud everything up.

"The calm part from 2:11 is kinda progrocky actually, since everything is really restrained and subtle and it has a hint of improvisation."

Yeah that part is taken from an idea I had. It was my first attempt at making this school project song and failed miserably:
http://www.mediafire.com/?cfq7kyuypz3m64w

I hate its sound now but I had that melody locked away inside me for months and I had to find a way to do it justice.

"I like the harmonized thing at 2:18 and then 2:23, it really fits your description."

Yup, I used it again at 2:32 and one last time in 3:11 in the final reiteration of the main melody, hence the whole idea of having different motifs and stuff cooperating with each other like an ecosystem would.

"The transition that happens within [2:42 , 2:48] is really great, I love how easily you bring back the original melody."

I was actually not so sure about that transition so yay!

"The last reiteration of the main theme didn't really bring too much new stuff to the table except some small variations on the theme, so maybe add something more hectic there to spice things up."

You are absolutely right, I did try and add some xylophone arpeggios or something but they failed so I just took the xylophone rhythms I used at 1:22 and threw them in there. I'll try and think of something else.

"The ending is pretty okay but it just kinda dies out a bit since it gradually goes down in intensity."

Yeah I felt an intense ending wouldn't really work for this track. I dunno.

"I really really like the little detail at 2:52 where the guitar plays a high A and there's this synthish fluttering sound behind it, and together it sounds exactly like what water droplets bouncing off leaves looks like. More of that kind of stuff would be awesome"

Fantastic idea thanks, that's what I'll work on next time I open the project file!

"The mixing and production pretty perfect so I don't think you need to think much about that."

Sweet. I was hoping the song wouldn't clip because it peaks above 0 dB pretty badly.

Thanks a LOT for the great review man! I love your reviews.

fillerfillerfillerfillerfillerfillerfillerfiller.


supermario456supermario456

Rated 5 / 5 stars

Actually it's pretty good. A lot of the parts I really liked including the beats.
The melodies are going good. :) Respect! :D


Step responds:

Thanks! I honestly can't thank you enough for all the comments you've given me on my tracks.

I'm glad you enjoyed it!