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Credits & Info

Aug 12, 2017 | 1:24 PM EDT
File Info
9.3 MB
4 min 4 sec
4.15 / 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.

Rated 4.15 / 5 stars
Plays & Downloads:
216 Plays | 3 Downloads
Share Links:
Other - Experimental

Author Comments

This is my final entry for NGUAC 2017.

I was inspired by the incredible videos of hummingbirds created by Anand Varma for National Geographic.

Not only was the information fascinating (of which there is more in the linked article at the bottom of the aforementioend post) but I had an emotional reaction to the videos themselves. His images captured a world very familiar, yet when slowed down, have an otherworldly ethereal beauty.

Harmonically, everything is based on stacked 5ths. The harmony is extended in the bridge.

Most of the sounds came from the acoustic guitar (played with fingers, chopsticks, ebow, allen wrench, and slide). Other sounds for the percussion came from cardboard boxes, a wood block, and simple wave forms (mostly white noise and sine waves). There's an 808 bass drum sample as well.

The prominent melody is voiced primarily by sine waves, then doubled with glockenspiel and vibraphone. I also used a really crappy flute soundfont which was mangled, distorted, and detuned to mimic the feel of a mellotron.

The guitar glitches were painstakingly chopped and hand placed.

The guitar was purposely tuned just a touch flat in the beginning and was distressed using a combination of distortion, eq, heavy compression, and a vinyl plugin. Background noise and tape hiss is purposeful and in some places, added artificially using a combination of pink noise and samples from various fans (air conditioner, kitchen vent, bathroom vent, computer). In general, quirks like hisses pops and subtly (and at times not so subtly) drifting pitch are the name of the game.

I encourage you to listen to this track while scrolling through the videos linked above.

Thank you for the opportunity. This has been fun.



Rated 3.5 / 5 stars

The breaks are really good, and the guitar is fantastic. But some parts are so loud and crowded that it can be confusing.

People find this review helpful!
sleepFacingWest responds:

Thanks. I wanted to create a dense flurry of activity to mimic the wing movements of the hummingbirds. Its less about individual lines and more about general shape and gesture like pointilism. I rushed to meet the deadline, but it would be nice to go over this again when the competition dust settles =)


Rated 5 / 5 stars

I love how you took the organic intro of this track and seamlessly transitioned into a glitchy dream-pop vibe. Despite the electronic sound of the bulk of the track, it still manages to sound simultaneously woodsy and natural. Great job; making me nervous for the outcome of this competition, haha

People find this review helpful!
sleepFacingWest responds:

Thanks! No need for nervousness, though. Everyone in this round has already come so far. At this point we can just be happy that challenges were met and enjoy having a supportive community. Competitions are arbitrary. I'm having a blast listening to what other people have come up with.


Rated 5 / 5 stars

great work ;)

sleepFacingWest responds:



Rated 4.5 / 5 stars

A wonderful sonic journey! Well done, nice work!

People find this review helpful!
sleepFacingWest responds:

thank you! I enjoyed your track as well :)