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Road to Solitude

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Author Comments

I spent a lot of time working on the strings for this song, but I didn't do any of the key switch articulations that come with the Kontakt factory library. That would've been at least 2 more hours of work for this since I don't even know where to begin when it comes to making strings sound realistic.

Since this is the first actual song I finished with decent sounding strings, I wasn't sure where to start with the mix; the sound I was looking for is either supposed to come from a good mix, or better strings, but I did what I could.

I only have a pair of Sennheiser headphones and a spectrogram to check really low frequencies. I hope the bass isn't too loud for people with subwoofers!

All strings from Kontakt's factory library
Pizzicato, flute, oboe, clarinet, timpani, horns, trumpet and tuba from Edirol Orchestral
Battery 4 drums
Bass, piano and glockenspiel from Cakewalk Dimension Pro
8Dio steel string guitar

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Very solid and gives me a sort of Final Fantasy feel whike still maintaining your own style. I'm a big fan of the bass line you used in this song as well as the choice of instruments. It was very unique and "music" to my ears, haha. I notice too in your descriptions that you have all these special synths and instruments. I know now how much I am limiting myself. I need to upgrade my FL past the initial verso because all I've had really are preset instruments, the fruity dx10, gms, and simsynth and those are all that my songs contain so not only do I not know the first thing about the production aspect of music, I also have low grade resources xD. Man I have a long way to go. Anyway, I really like your music, and I think I have found someone I can relate to music wise and that I can set a standard to although it is high compared to where I'm at now, lol.

ILG924 responds:

Thanks, some of the chords in this song reminded me of Damcyan castle from FF4; Nobuo Uematsu inspired me to make music in the first place. The first song I saved in FL was in march 2012 and it sounded like garbage; I had no idea what I was doing. That wasn't very long ago, so I'm sure you'll be making good stuff fairly soon if your current uploads are your starting point. You got the writing part down already, that took me awhile to get and I'm still learning.

The Mixing Engineer's handbook helped me out a lot, it covers many genres and made me understand how in-depth the mixing process is. Check out the NG audio forums, OCRemix, or any other music community and you'll find lots of useful information on music production

Your harmony and melodies are the kind of stuff that's right up my alley of interest. Very JRPG-like! I especially enjoy the section from 2:49 to 3:09. :D

I haven't used the Kontakt factory library myself since I'm comfortable with what I have now, but I think you'll find a ton of freedom in familiarizing yourself with the key switch articulations available to you. Making the articulation convincing on instruments goes a long way towards improving the piece, as well as the mix. Personally, I feel that the majority of the mix in an orchestral piece is done in the composing process, where you consider the texture, balance, and function of everything. The whole is greater than the sum of its parts in an orchestra. When things get a bit busier in this song and more voices are involved, it seems like everybody's fighting to be center-stage. Some adjustments to the dynamics of the instruments would really fix this up, especially since not all the instruments are from the same library. They could be all over the place in terms of mic placement, reverb, etc. Giving some dedicated time on individual dynamics can also help to bring some memorable inflection to your melody lines. Your woodwind solos here would stand out a great deal more. On a slightly unrelated note, I also think the pizzicato sounds really unconvincing here, though that's very possibly because of Edirol's limitations (I've never used it myself, so I can't speak for it).

I think you have a pretty good grasp on how to make things sound nice regardless of inexperience with the instrumentation. A little bit of practice and research on the topic should really propel your skills with it forward. :)

ILG924 responds:

Thanks for your insight, Deemo!
I have played around with the key switch articulations before but I think my main problem is me not listening to enough orchestral music. I know the very basics of orchestration, like where instruments should be, but proper instrument dynamics just doesn't come naturally to me yet. Maybe Samuel Adler's book will help with that, along with that OrchestrationOnline Youtube channel.

As for the pizzicato, Edirol doesn't sound very convincing at all and it probably wasn't the best choice. it kind of has a synthesized orchestra sound to it, like something from the early 2000s.

Your reviews always give me something to think about improving so I really appreciate it! I'm sure my instrumentation will improve once I start listening to a variety of orchestral stuff

Credits & Info


4.25 / 5.00

Nov 5, 2015
11:29 PM EST
Video Game
File Info
7.5 MB
4 min 8 sec

Licensing Terms

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