A Hero Rises

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This piece was inspired by The Reward, an episode from Tales of Alethrion. I realized I didn't have any heroic brassy music and decided to make some. Although it's only one minute long, it took about 3 days to put together (most of the time was spent on production). That said, it's always nice to have this sort of bombastic cinematic stuff in a portfolio.

This was written to be a loop, but as is typically the case with game/animation music, the actual file I distribute on my blog is split into separate intro/looped sections. This is because there is often intro material that isn't part of the actual looped part, or a few intro notes need to be added to the end of the piece so that it loops back seamlessly to a midway point. This is the review version I made for NewGrounds and SoundCloud.

Any constructive criticisms are, as always, much appreciated. I just want to get better.

I'm also looking for work/collaboration. Please get in touch if you have projects available.

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Perfectly mixed orchestral track where the instruments all blend well together and some very nice melodies. I do wish this was a bit longer though, got a bit disappointed when it ended so soon. Also I wish that the bass section would be a bit more.. bassy. Kinda didn't feel tose low cello and tubas that helps add to the power of the song.

Only real criticism I can come with really :). Great track. Would have gotten a 5/5 if it was longer.

Thx for requesting a review from the:
{Review Request club}

sleepFacingWest responds:

Thanks! I added some sub-bass sine waves to beef up the low end, but I think it got a little washed out when I added the reverb in post. I'll try to crank it harder the next time I approach a brass choir piece. Some percussion doubling the attacks of the bass instruments might also help fill out the space. I'll look into it.

I could see this at the beginning of a flash, during a video game intro, or even an actual movie produced. The ending seemed abrupt to me though. I see that you were having it set up in a way that it could loop to the midway point, but at the same time it would have been nice to have some kind of epic build up towards the end of the song so if someone did want to end it there it wouldn't have felt so abrupt.

I really liked it. Sounds very professional all around. Like I said, I wouldn't be surprised if I turned the tv on and heard this as an introduction to a movie. Kind of sounds like something a medieval war movie or show would use.

sleepFacingWest responds:

Thanks for listening! Sometimes there are loops that don't go back to the VERY beginning, but in this case it actually does. I still distribute an intro/loop file on my blog, though, because I cut the file so the last notes of the phrase decay while the initial material starts again. The loop actually starts a little late into the phrase, and cuts out partway through the next iteration.

You're absolutely right about it ending a bit abruptly. When I was writing it I felt like I could just keep going, but this was sort of an effort to expand my stylistic portfolio and force myself to write quickly. In previous years I've taken a VERY long time to write anything, but I'm attempting to freelance with music for awhile and learning to use my tools faster and crank ideas out is sort of imperative. I also need to show a little more of what I can do; my personal work is mostly in a specific music-nerd vein and it's next to impossible finding work doing the geeky stuff. This is sort of like a demo of what I could do for potential hired projects. When all is said and done, though, there's no reason the music should just sit there doing nothing. I decided to create a blog that would work as a living portfolio. I write pieces in various styles and genres, and then people can use the music if they'd like. Hopefully it will help me find more work.

All that said, I'd love to pick this back up someday and add a proper ending to it. Hopefully I'll find the time, but right now scrounging for gigs is keeping me pretty busy.

Here's the blog I mentioned earlier: http://sleepfacingwest.tumblr.com/

Oh man, this is a great track! The instruments blend together and fill the song nicely (something most of my songs lack, for some reason XD). A bit short, but other than that, 10/10 ^^

sleepFacingWest responds:

Thanks! It's a bit on the sort side as it's supposed to be a loop and can run as long as the person needs. Also, I wrote it as a demo. I realized I didn't have any heroic brass choir work in my portfolio and decided to write some just to prove to possible future collaborators and clients that I was capable. As far as the blending goes, compression and eq are your friend. Try to separate instruments by allowing them to sit in their own frequency space. Subtle manipulations often work nicely, and it's always better to cut than to boost. I've listened to your tracks and will write more about production in a review of one of your own songs.

Thanks for listening!

Very nice cinematic track! The control of emotion and dynamics of the brass and the soft strings really adds to it!
I'm missing a bigger and wider presence of the drum section here (could be my flavour).
I imagine this to be the hymn of a medieval nation or the background track of a game! Great work!

As to collabs, if you're free, you can connect me - I love to work together with talented people!

sleepFacingWest responds:

I had actually thought about beefing up the percussion! It's one of those things where the rabbit hole can always go deeper. I thought some more clangy stuff in the background maybe, or during the 3rd section when the loud/quiet part happens having some triangle during the loud part. I dunno. These things are so open and at a certain point, you can really do anything! I would eventually like to make this more than a loop. In that case, I could definitely beef up the percussion!

(thanks for listening)

I can really feel the connection from The Reward. (Great episode btw for anyone who hasn't checked it out)
Nevertheless. I love your brass section what library did you use? I wanna say Cinebrass?? It sounds very warm and brings that heroic vibe.
The production is amazing and your did yourself good taking your time with it especially with expression (CC11) to add that realism.
I find it much easier to mix when everything is in the right place.

Very well done, and if you are looking for collab work I make music like this and am very much intrigued to work with you thanks to this wonderful result!


sleepFacingWest responds:

I actually used East West. The samples are primarily from Symphonic Orchestra, but the Tuba/cimbalo (SUUUUPER low brass) is from Hollywood Brass. Good ears! I did, in fact, jockey the expression quite heavily. I feel like the brass should always swell in and out. I also ended up sending all the brass out to a bus and added some overtone distortion to beef up the overtones. Don't tell anyone...that's my secret brass beefing up trick ;)

I'm actually concerned mostly with the reverb. I work a lot with nuance of attack (there are actually 3 french horn parts layered together to get the right articulations) and dynamics, but once I have to throw it in a room I have a hard time finding the right sound. Did the decays seem artificial?

(thanks for listening)

Credits & Info

3.56 / 5.00

May 12, 2015
2:23 PM EDT
File Info
2.7 MB
1 min 12 sec

Licensing Terms

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