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Uploaded
Feb 5, 2015 | 1:34 PM EST
File Info
Song
1.4 MB
1 min 32 sec
Score
4.64 / 5.00

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Licensing Terms

Please contact me if you would like to use this in a project. We can discuss the details.

Score:
Rated 4.64 / 5 stars
Plays & Downloads:
753 Plays | 22 Downloads
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Genres:
Other - Cinematic
Tags:
cat
poem
loki
elf-hunt

Author Comments

Change of plans. I meant to upload yet another old piano piece this week, but I accidentally made a new song. Just look at how things can go! I Guess that the piano piece will have to wait until next week :p

Now, let's start out by saying that this was made pretty lazily, in about 6 hours, so the quality leaves much to be desired.
You see, my sister is currently taking a writing course, and her classmates asked her to set music to the words of one of her poems. Well, she in turn asked me to do it in her stead, and here we are.
I originally composed this for the piano, but I was too lazy to record a proper version, so I ended up making an orchestral-ish arrangement of the piece isntead o.O

One thing bothered me though, and that was the fact that I couldn't find a free kantele vst (as I don't have Kontakt, to the full extent at least). Thankfully, our dear Newgrounds friend @Samulis has developed a free vst Zither that I could use instead! So without him this piece wouldn't have turned out the same at all (the zither was one of the first instruments I added too, so it impacts the piece quite heavily). It's a shame that he's feeling the need to take a break from Newgrounds, but if he feels like it, I guess he should :)

And before you mention the weird drums at the end, let me tell you my story: I don't have any good precussion vst that I like, so I downloaded some free samples. I only liked two of the tom sounds though... So what my lazy ass did was to simply put some weird delays and echos on the drum samples, and then cut them up. Obiously the best solution to an otherwise percussion-less track (Noooooo sarcasm at aaaaalll).

Either way. YAY for long descriptions!

Here's the poem:

Älvjakt

Frostbitet gräs under ljudlösa tassar
Ögon som skimra i natten
Torra löv i vinden mjukt rasslar
I ton till de klingande skratten

I skogsbrynet står en skepnad allena
Fältets älvor betraktar
Med illvilja i blicken likt en hyena
Den all glädje i världen föraktar

Med sylvassa klor och mord i sinnet
Jakten varelsen gläder
Vill utplåna feer ur mannaminnet
Kanske blott Loke i kattakläder?

As you might notice if you're very observant, the poem is actually not in English, but in Swedish, which will make it very difficult to sing for the most of you. I should also mention that the melody is taken from the piano throughout the entire piece, so one is not get distracted by the strings and such. (And because I'm evil like that, it's difficult to hear the piano played melody in some parts of the track >:D)

EDIT:

Well then. My sister and I decided to translate the poem into English, as this is not a Swedish website after all :)
The translation is not exact, nor does it keep but one rhyme. Still, if you know anything about singing, it is worded so that one can sing the poem to the melody in English as well! Remember, the melody is taken from the piano...

Fairy Hunt

Frostbitten grass under silent paws
Eyes shimmering in the night
Dry leaves in the wind gently rustle
In tune with the vibrant laughter

At the forest's edge stands a shadow alone
Observing the elves on the field
A hint of malice in its cold gaze like a hyena
All the joy in the world it despises

With razor sharp claws and death on its mind
The hunt amuses the creature
Will scratch out fearies from the memory of mankind
Perhaps only Loki in cat's clothing?

(Some lines begin in the end of a previous measure [where the melody leads up to the next part; not sure how to explain this], so one needs to think some about the structure).

So... I hope this composition didn't ruin the poem. It's up to you to decide I guess ;)

Reviews


TaintedLogicTaintedLogic

Rated 4 / 5 stars

This is beautiful. :) I love the instruments, and they work together really well. It has quite a bit of a climactic feel too, and I think it fits the poem pretty well. I must say, though: I'm listening to this with headphones (which I usually don't) and I can tell it gets pretty distorted at times, especially towards the end when the piano has those low chords. I loved those floaty synth arpeggios, though. The mood is fantastic, although I believe I have a challenge #2 for you, LSD: create a track that's mastered to the best of your ability. Equalize all of the instruments, adjust the volume levels and balance, and make sure there are no tones that interfere with or distort others. It always feels so awkward to critique your mixing when you know you didn't put much effort into it. BUT if you really put your greatest work into it, I could totally help you improve from there. :D So give it a shot! Otherwise, nice work. ;)


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LucidShadowDreamer responds:

Thank you :3

Another challenge ey? And I am yet to start on your previous challenge, which is to create a less flowy piano piece XD
The thing with really good mixing, is that I don't really want to invest the hours upon hours of work into it (it takes really long as I'm a beginner), unless it's a piece I've been intending to do really well. This was more of a small side project, so I finished it quickly. I'm working on a different kind of piece at the moment though, and it will sure take some special mixing. It's probably have distrortion though (I actually tend to enjoy certain kinds of distrotions and dissonance). I usually do equalize all of the intruments. The most urgent things I should work on would be much more panning, as well as lessening the reverb I tend to use, as everything becomes muddy.

Oh, and the "synth arepggios" you're referring to are probably the zither XD I edited the sound quite a bit :p

"The mood is fantastic..."

=> heh, along with chords and melodies, I feel as though moods and atmospheres are something I'm actually pretty good at.

Speaking of mixing, I actually discussed with my piano teacher, and he agreed to focus a bit less on the piano for a while, and teach me more about mixing with my own software, so we'll see how that goes! He's a top class musician, so he knows what he's doing :D

Thanks for the review :)!!!


PhonometrologistPhonometrologist

Rated 5 / 5 stars

The problem with this track is that it doesn't feel complete by the end. Could've expounded on it musically a bit more. I like the rhythm and even the quirky production of it. I have no idea what the poem says and I think that would help me in figuring out the train of thought of what the music is trying to convey. If I were to guess the imagery or story of what the words mean by only hearing the music, I'd say this piece is similar to an earthly conquest. I hear rain in the beginning... or at least water. The motion in the melody circles around the E-flat Major or C natural-minor scale. You end in C minor so I'm just going to guess that's what the key is in, but it really doesn't sound all the minor hence why I'm struggling not to say it's in E-flat major. The motif circles around the C minor chord in the beginning, but you play B flat major--dominant of E flat. eh maybe it's just mixolydian. The melodic contour starts at an E flat then jumps down to G, moves back to E flat and down to D-- the leading tone. The melodic contour jumps down and up, and goes down and up by steps even passing the starting note to F, but only to go back all the way down through the scale. This is what we're being introduced to before the rest of the instruments come in, and I have no idea what to make of it. Not straight forward at all. It's hopeful and triumphant, but also not. Merely observing a certain beauty in a way but of what? And that makes me want to translate the poem, and why I think this piece is too short. It just leaves me wondering why I'm slithering around compositionally as that portrays my puzzlement to where I ought to stand in perspective as a listener. It seems like it's being told in third person.
Now what I mentioned might sound like a bad thing, but maybe this is the point. And it doesn't take away my enjoyment of this track either. Just merely trying to intellectualize why I feel this way upon listening to it. I could just let it wash over me without giving thought, but I find this intriguing enough to want to find some answers.

Alright...poem translated (keywords):
Frost/grass/Shimmer/eyes/laughter/forest/ALONE/malice/joy/world/despises/razor sharp/blood/hunt/fairies/memory/Loki

I think it does match the music in the sense of a carefree, alluring beauty of ?love?
I hear the narrator being enticed despite some kind of unexplained danger lurking, and isn't afraid to continue in finding out.


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LucidShadowDreamer responds:

I love the effort you put in to this review, or should I say the observation?! :D
I agree that this piece ends a bit quickly. The reason might just be in that I couldn't write a longer song for such a short poem, and because I'm not really experienced at things like this XD
If I wanted to cop out I could always say that the incompletion is intended, as it symbolises the holes left in the memory of mankind now that faries don't exist anymore >:D!!! Alas, it's not the truth. That said, it's one interpretation.

I don't necessarily mind the messy production either, even though I understand why many do (and it sure could be better!)

I can also hear the rain, although in the story, there is none, as there is frost. I get the rainy mood from the tremolo strings and the zither.
I don't know if you hear it too, but already the first note of the piano feels pretty cold to me.

I have now translated the poem into English along with my sister, so I think it's easier to understand what it's all about now. We also translated the short story she wrote around the poem for you, and it stays very true to the original. I'll post in in a sec.

With the strings that play the melody in the second half of the first half I wanted to capture the rustling of the leaves, and with the interaction between the ziher and the strings I tried to portray the vibrant laughter.

You're spot on with the chords and patterns! Your ear is far greater than mine (that said, I'm not good at music theory).

I would say that most of this song is in C minor though, as it both begins and ends with that chord and scale. The reason why it sounds like it is in E major at times, I guess, is beacuse I wanted to show both the wonder and the sadness in the story. Now, there are more emotions to the story than this, but those are the ones I chose to incorporate into the piece.

I did use the B flat major yes. You will find that you can always squeeze in this progression in the C minor scale: C minor, A flat (major 7), B flat (major 7), and then either C minor or G minor (7). Works every time, you can even play G7 instead of G minor. I used F minor add 9 instead of A flat (major 7) in the beginning of the second line though, and I even put in a B dim after the G major before returning to C sus (4) => C at the word "night" . I hope that wasn't too much in there!

Apart from 0:33, where I play an odd D flat (major 7), I think I used the same scale throughout the song. I may have of course used one of the mode scales (like the mixolydian you mentioned).
I end the first verse with another take on the C sus => C that I used earlier, but in this case I used F sus => F instead.

In the second and third verse one could say that the tempo of the melody is doubled, as they together take as much time as the first verse did by itself. These are the verses that are talking about the creature, and the ones that imply the murder of the fairies, so I thought they should be more dramatic perhaps, with the climax at the end, whereas the final line has a different structure of it's own, as it reveals the "killer". Just some extra stuff which I'm not sure really make sense XD

And now you know exactly how bad I am at describing music!
Your analysis of the first verse is splendid though.

"It's hopeful and triumphant, but also not."

=> As I said, I wanted to portray both wonder and sadness. So you are pretty right in feeling that.
The story is being told in third person, so you are right there; it's about a made up past event based on Nordic mythology.

"...but I find this intriguing enough to want to find some answers."

As earlier was mentioned. In honour of your shown interest, we translated the story for you :) Hopefully, this will make sense of the things. I could've portrayed the madness shown by the villagers in the story, but I chose not to, as it isn't eminient in the poem itself.

Here it is:

~Early one morning, a dozen of dead fairies were found outside of a village towards the north, and among these dead fairies had sat a black cat with blood all around its mouth and on its paws. The villagers had tried to catch said cat in order to to kill it, for in this village fairies' dance on the fields was considered to contribute to a good harvest, but it was all in vain. It all ended with one man going insane and killing another, and it is said that this was due to the man having stared for too long into the cat's moon-yellow eyes. After a counsultation with the village elder, during which the elder had beshrewed the stupidity of the men, it came forth that the creature had assuredly not been a normal cat, but a god in an animal's clothing - Loki, based on the cruelty the cat had possessed. The song written in honour of the event has since spread througout the entire country and is part of many a bards' repertoire.~

I hope you enjoyed the read, and thanks a lot for your thorough and thoughtful review!!!


Agitat0rAgitat0r

Rated 4.5 / 5 stars

The piece has good potential and chord selections are great at usual. However there are parts which very muddy and chaotic. I feel like you should limit down the reverb. I would love to learn more about the further development for this piece.

Wow you were using Samulis instrument, props to you for supporting him. 4.5/5 Good job overall.


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LucidShadowDreamer responds:

Thanks man!
These chords are pretty much some basic patterns to me, as I tend to be using them in different combinations pretty often.
I agree that parts of this are very muddy. This was just a small side project I threw together, so I paid next to no attention to the mixing (nor to the arrangement or composing in general). Man... If I buy East West Symphonic Orchestra (Silver Edition) I think I might just try making a somewhat larger piece. Don't get your hopes up though! I'm planning for my next composition to be a new piano piece, if I can only come up with an idea. I want to make something with a little more... Punch? Than my usual flowy piano tracks :3

Yeah, Samulis sure is great! I didn't use the zither in any sort of traditional way, and a I left a lot of features of the vst unused.

(Seriously though, apart from very little volume balancing and adding tremolo to the background strings, my mixing took preobably about 5 minutes, which explains the ridiculous quality XD)

Thanks for your review :D


absoluteDETHabsoluteDETH

Rated 4 / 5 stars

I'd send you a high five in the mail if you were to upload someone reading this with the song in the background. 'Tis beautiful, if a bit muddy in quality, but that matters not in background music.


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LucidShadowDreamer responds:

Actually, you don't even have to read the poem, as you can sing it! Too bad I lack a good microphone :( That, and the fact that I suck at singing :/ My sister probably wouldn't want her singing online either XD
THAT said, reading the poem with this as backround music is a great idea!
The quality is indeed a bit muddy; a lot of reverb increases both the dreamy feel and the muddiness :3
Thanks for the review!
I didn't review it, but I liked your last artwork :D


themob2themob2

Rated 4 / 5 stars

not bad what you have done i like the fack you make the orchestral arrangement just a bit sad for the time it a bit short but still good
i dont think this composition ruin the poem but i cant if it true or not i cant understand swedish ;D
but in fact you have made a good song but i dint find the problem of the percussion or its me cant hear it because you have make a really good job soo we cant see that or you have fix it :)


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LucidShadowDreamer responds:

Hello!

I tend to make pretty sad songs, and even in happy ones, I try to hint some sadness. In this case though, it's because the poem is sad, and the story behind it is too :)
My sister said that the song reflects the mood of the poem pretty well at least, so I think it gets a pass XD

The thing with the percussion is that it's pretty much just some weird stuff I threw together using two samples, instead of actually making anything sensible. I'm glad that they worked somewhat well at least!

Thank you for the review! :D