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~SW~ Astral Nation

Download this song!

Author Comments

Okay, first of all... the full title of this is "Birth of an Astral Nation". It is a story told through music. I'll just name each section so you can know what they're called... the rest of the story I'll leave to your mind.

0:00 ==> Tribes Gather
0:40 ==> The Building Begins
1:40 ==> Kings and Queens
2:38 ==> Dawn of Technology
3:18 ==> Inventing New Realities
4:00 ==> Ages Past
4:34 ==> Preparing for Launch/LHC
4:52 ==> Into the Deep Void

If you don't feel like writing a technical review or want to get cookies, please please please write some kind of text story for the song! :D (also, you might want to be careful reading the reviews in case anyone DOES do that - don't ruin your own mental story :<)

Of course, if you want to leave a more technical review... I would absolutely adore that. I worked harder on mastering this time as well as having a more 'theatrical' feel (there might be mixing issues, but unless you have auto-EQing speakers, there should be absolutely no clipping whatsoever. I went into Audacity and edited every single bit of clipping out). There are plenty of weird and odd instruments, such as a tabla, tamboura, anvil, "clicky", tuvan throat singers, and bagpipes (thank you very much for the bagpipes, camoshark - he's awesome and you should listen to his stuff too). Also, thanks goes to Buoy for the awesome watery drumkit that starts to come in at about 3:14. I'm going to have so much fun with it in the future. If you don't know Buoy, DEFINITELY check him out.

As always, hope you enjoy!

Fun facts:
-This song has 38 different instruments (grouping percussion channels together).
-This song has 19 automations, most of which span the majority of the song.
-This song only has 2 audio clips for effects.
-This song uses 38 mixer channels (probably because that's how many instruments there are).
-Instrument VST used: Omnisphere, Edirol, Reason (yeah I know it's actually a DAW), PoiZone, Direct Wave, Midi Out, the default Fruity Sampler, Fruity Soundfont Player.
-Mixer VST used: Maximus, Fruity Parametric EQ2, Fruity Compressor, Fruity Fast LP, Fruity Delay 2, Fruity Filter, Fruity Reeverb 2, Fruity Reeverb, Guitar Rig 5.
-Both instances of Omnisphere use 8 different instruments.
-Time spent... 85 hours and 46 minutes... just in the program. More outside planning and showing it to people for feedback.

Thanks to the following for feedback: Chrausner, Buoy, camoshark, MaestroRage, Step, DivoFST, a mixing teacher from Boston, my piano teacher, and my jazz teacher! They've all been helpful in making this, particularly toward the end when I started looking at nitpicky stuff.

SUCCESS! This song achieved 2nd place in Bosa's Dreams of Splendor competition! Buoy won 1st place with his awesome 10-minute piece Salvation and you should totally go check it out too.


Interesting idea, but the best way to tell a musical story is to tell a subtle story. Your method was a little too extreme. Just an opinion.

SkyeWint responds:

Hahaha. Fair enough. ^_^ 's not for everyone. I tried to make my points fairly clear so that it's easier to get a story across. I'll try to make a more subtle story next time.

Well, everyone is posting incredibly long reviews on here, so I'll do my best to live up to what they have written. I don't leave reviews very often so sorry if it's not so structured or too much babbling and having no flow. But here it goes!

This song is interesting, you decided to create a story or some sort of score with each part of the song. Pretty original idea, kinda inspires me to write something like that... And for the most part I could imagine the vague (not a bad thing!) storyboard of the song. First hearing this song, Steps "Ecosystem" came to mind instantly for some reason. I'm not sure if that forced this on me, but I felt like it made this song feel more jungly than anything, and I think it was the use of instruments that lead me to that, but again, that's just me. Particularly at 0:40, I guess I just imagined it to be a little less tribal, and more of a development phase. Not exactly sure, but it really isn't that big of a deal to go on about it.

Now what is just awesome about this song, is that it has so much damn variety! I can find so many genres in this. I feel secret agent, jungle, tribal, future... just too many to name. Just the amount of different instruments and variety... just awesome. And being diverse is a great thing to apply to your music, so nice on that :3 I was a little surprised when you said you only used 38 tracks... I know that already is a lot, but by how many different parts to the song there are, I expected way more. But that doesn't matter, it all sounds awesome and the little stuff like that means nothing :P

Now this song is just a masterpiece of a story. And I hate being critical after you spent a whopping almost 86 hours on a piece?!?! (WHAT?!) But there are some parts where the emotions could be a little stronger, I know that isn't what you were going for exactly since you had the story in mind. It only occurred in certain parts, but I didn't really feel the song hitting me so hard in that sense. It would have been nice if I was moved more by the melodies.

Now I'm just gonna babble on some random stuff that I enjoyed. Instruments are awesome, dynamics are awesome, so many ups and downs with the song and so much space and room for the imagination to explore. So much diversity, so much... so much... EVERYTHING! You have captured just about everything a song needs to be.

Soooooo overall, great work, just some minor tweaks, but they were all opinion based so it might just be totally biased to what I look for in a song. And good luck in the Dreams of Splendor contest, you will be a very tough competitor!

4.5/5 stars
5 star vote


SkyeWint responds:

Hey there! I'm a bit too tired to respond in depth to your review, but I'll respond to what I can think about.

Not surprised it reminds you of Ecosystem initially - that part is based off of Ecosystem.

Only 38 tracks? xD ONLY? That's as if I said "only 86 hours" - I normally only have something like 12 max. Keep in mind though, that's not all the percussive instruments. The sounds at about 3:18 or so are all grouped, so is the orchestral percussion.

Yes almost 86 hours. Want a screenshot? I'm totally fine with criticism though, that's great. I'd love to know what parts you thought could use stronger emotion. Personal stuff is still useful to know even if I disagree with it.

Thanks for the great review! (yes it was great)


Yay, my internet isn't being gay atm so I can listen & review the final version.

I'd like to say that this is one of your best works yet. The quality is awfully pro-style, the composition throughout the song is splendid (it tells a series of stories). The instruments are all panned accordingly. No repetition. Just an excellent piece. Damn, I need to get some good headphones to enjoy this more. I have nothing technical to provide since I already did that via PM. :c

Here's my impression on the song as a whole:

The first 1:30 minutes reminds me of a tribe game where a tribe builds pyramids while you have to take out gems in a gem box. 1:42 onwards reminds me of a medieval setting, I can't remember what it was but it feels nostalgic. Around 2:50, it reminds me of industrial England with Scottish people working in the coal mines (lol why am I thinking of this) and then an old British band playing for a crowd outside. After the 4:00 minute mark, it reminds me of the Aztecs being invaded by the Spaniards (I don't know why).

So then you have this awesome climax that starts at 4:35. For some reason, it reminds me of the Spaniards defeating the Native Americans.

And then you have the empty quietness of death...


Yeah, that sums up what was going through my mind. I'm sure you'll do great in Bosa's contest. Good luck!

As for the score, 5 stars out of 5 and thus a vote of 5/5 and favorited. Yay for you!

- Chrausner -

SkyeWint responds:

Oh my gosh you think this is perfect? Yessssssssssssssssssssss!

I hope you noticed that I fixed two of the things you had mentioned - the sound of the anvil is lowered, so there shouldn't be as high and shrill of frequencies at around 3:18. Also, in the part at 4:35-4:52, the flute was lowered in volume so it wouldn't be as invasive.

Those impressions of yours are really nice, thanks a lot for sharing! I found your thoughts on the last ambient section to be the most interesting. It's almost a creepy way of interpreting it, though it also makes it sound as if death is a soothing and calming thing.

"I'm sure you'll do great in Bosa's contest."
I REALLY hope so! ^_^ Thank you so much for the review!

I love how you are able to tell a story using a song that is broken into several parts without compromising either one of the two. The music is obviously very fluid, you travel between eight different ages each with their own distinct characteristics and many different instruments, rhythms and ideas but manage to make it feel like a one way ticket to the final destination without any stops in between and that is the main goal while trying to tell a story with a song, telling the actual story in one compact musical trip and not in 8 mini songs glued together.
On to the song...
Very well accomplished intro, i love those "floaty watery drums" and percussion around it, the Woodwind instrument gives the impression that people are actually working in a teamwork environment and getting things done while being proud of it. Im not sure if you changed the transition between "The Building Begins and Kings and Queens" since the project you sent me and this final version or it simply sounds better today but i criticized it a bit and now it sounds awesome...sorry if its the same file i messed up then :S
Kings and Queens is without any shadow of a doubt my favorite part of your song, im a total sucker for choirs and yours are just beautiful!
I think one of the best transitions of the song happens when the tuvan throat singers hold a note then the bagpipes have a pretty epic solo over it and a bassy solo follows, i really like that part!
Inventing New Realities is really interesting to hear since it departs from the things we heard so far in the song and introduces a lot of new cool electronic stuff.
Very good work on the build up to the final climax before the ambiance comes on.
On a global note this is a monster piece and you should be proud of it, it tells its story with flair and class. You are both Mr.Details and Lord Mixing in this song, both those aspect are unbelievably well done and its obvious you spent a lot of time with this track. On a side note it is pretty hard naming one song, you had to name 8 parts and the song itself xD
Awesome job Skye!!

SkyeWint responds:

Hey Divo!

I love to tell stories with my music. :) It's what I really try to do. If people see images in their head while the sound plays... I've succeeded.

The "floaty watery drums" are the tabla and tamboura. They're REALLY fun - I got them from that massive soundfont pack. Maybe you should try to use them? I'd be interested to see what you come up with!

It's funny you thought the woodwind instrument gave the team-working feel, I personally thought the xylo would do that more. Just goes to show how different people think, huh? ^_^

The transition between "The Building Begins" and "Kings and Queens" actually is the same as it's been from the beginning. I personally think it's a really bad transition, but considering what it's bridging, I guess it's decent.

I'm glad you like Kings and Queens so much. :P For some reason it's my least favorite part... I didn't have nearly as much inspiration while making it, so even though it's one of the shortest sections it took the longest.

All the details and little mixing things took soooooo long. x.x That's where all the time spent on this really came from... Thanks for noticing it!

I'm really glad you like this. Thanks for reviewing! I've left a review on your Musical Mirror in return. :)

Shivers down my spine... just magnificent. So much attention to every fine detail! Excellent story telling over a vast arc of styles and genres. This piece is simply incredible... It lacks nothing. Every single noise in this has a purpose and a reason, and there is nothing left to standards or cliches.

You need to spend less time being so awesome! I am getting jealous with my inferior works! :D

Keep compos(ed/ing)!*

* No really, after this, you had better keep at it or I will break your fingers or something... your past pieces have been 'wow', but this really took it to a new level.

SkyeWint responds:

Hey, Samulis! Glad you reviewed this! I'm glad you like it - as I said, it took a ridiculously long time to make. I'm glad you noticed that every instrument serves a specific purpose in telling the story. :^) (hooray for new smileys) You know I also really really hate making pieces sound cliche - funnily enough though, this takes a lot from a variety of songs, such as Step's Ecosystem, a percussion pack from Buoy, that song I showed you with a similar bagpipe riff from Grandia, music by Two Steps From Hell, the song Artificial Intelligence by PeterSatera... Yeah. I'm not actually as original as people like to think. ^_^`

Your works are FAR from inferior, man. You've made some amazing stuff!

I am definitely going to keep at this - don't worry, I have two other songs in the works (though one is backed up ad infinitum because the person I'm working with hasn't been active in over two months... :<). I do have a couple other ideas for new pieces as well, hopefully they'll be as enjoyable with this one!

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Credits & Info


4.24 / 5.00

Feb 1, 2013
6:53 PM EST
File Info
13.4 MB
5 min 51 sec

Licensing Terms

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