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AIM - A long way through winter

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my submission for AIM this year. It´s been a while now since I wanted to make something quite peaceful and relaxing. So I found this very inspiring piece of art by Fuske (http://fuske.newgrounds.com/):


What came out is a very slow paced piece with a really simple melody. I totally overused reverb in this one and this was totally by purpose ;) Hope you like it! It is definitely the most relaxing piece music I ever made.

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I kept expecting this to go somewhere bigger, but then I realized that it really didn't need to. Really enjoyable and some very pretty parts. Really liked how you made the chords and melodies fit together at parts

Azhthar responds:

Thanks a lot! I´m glad you like it. Maybe I should have made some more evolvement at the end of the track but I just wanted to make this piece a bit more slow and peaceful.

I've been taking some to go through some of the submissions. I know I've come across this one before but I don't recall properly listening to it.





I'm just staring at my fingers dumbfounded trying to think of what to say with more than one word. But I can't.


Azhthar responds:

Cool! Thanks a lot for your feedback. I also really liked your track. Although I´m not so much into dubstep, your track captured this cool dark atmosphere and still was very catchy. So congrats as a well deserved winner!

The mix is far from perfect, but the idea is fitting. I wish the crackling sounds and glitching was a few dB quieter. They're so clear in comparison to the rest of the track, it detracts from the smooth desolation of such wide, open space. I would say this fits the artwork well, and I appreciate your thoughtful, minimalistic writing. Your use of space was well thought out aside from the glitches. Will be in my considerations, for sure.

Azhthar responds:

Thanks a lot for the good feedback! I know my mixing is always a very weak spot but it gets a lottle better with time. I actually really had problems to place the glitch percussion in the mix. At the beginning they were always too much in the background and at the end they turned out to be too loud... At least it brought some dynamics into this part ;) Sorry for the delayed response. I was unavailable for while and missed all the final part of the AIM this year :(

Wanted to wait to review this till I had several listens, because initially I was drawn with excitement and intrigue upon the first listen. The true test is whether there is something to return to with anew sense of interest. The mix, although not perfect, works really well, and the arrangement, although, simple, is brilliant. My one critique is the choice of single notes of the piano at 3:51 and at .44. It's a bit too naked for my taste, musically speaking, but it makes sense along with the artwork. It does set the mood of isolation. However, it's in the choice of notes just hovering around a chord as opposed to having its own melodic contour that one would follow. If would you have done the latter, it would have been more interesting in my opinion-- of course, that's all what this is anyway. But the sound design, and progression is quite interesting, and as one could see in the comments, heart-wrenching as well. At 3:28, I'm reminded of other minimalist composers with the arpeggiated piano and strings. The relationship between the two instruments is what takes the cake for me. The atmosphere of the strings of the beginning immediately grabs the listener's attention, and with the synth and bass at 1:15 bringing us along it's intricate journey keeps us interested throughout. I suppose, I really wanted to say that you have 3 really interesting and distinct sections that you have created all within a limited arrangement, and it works beautifully.

Azhthar responds:

Hey! Good to hear from you! Thank you so much for this detailed review! I know my mixing is always a weak spot, but it´s getting a bit better every time... Especially the piano is a bit too much compressed including the reverb on it which sounds a bit strange if you hear it isolated. I completely understand the point about the single notes. At the beginning this is actually by purpose, just to vaguely indicate the harmonies and to make the sound appearing much fuller when the second piano "voice" is starting at 1:45. I am not completely convinced by the ending around 3:51 by myself. It works somehow as a reprise but it is a bit boring and maybe a bit redundant after the part before which was much alive. I kept it because I thought it leads a bit back to the artwork. Maybe I just should have kept the second voice here or add even more... Anyway... The part with the arpeggiated piano is also the one I like most :) It is always good to get some critical feedback! Thanks a lot again! I´m glad you liked it.

I feel the piano is a smidge too loud but just a little. Other than that, this is a perfect piece. It feels like a great way to open a movie. It painted a picture in my mind, inspired me in a way. It made me think of a man limping in the cold winter, after doing so much to get to his child's birthday party years after a divorce, trying to make it up to them for his wrongs. His car broke down, and he hitched some rides, and hikes some distance, but he made it.

This song brought tears to my eyes, which hardly any song has ever done. Very emotional, inspiring, atmospheric, beautiful. The melody, just...everything is perfect. What a beautiful, well-mixed, expressive song. It not only brings the artwork to life, it tells a story beyond it that can be interpreted by anyone. It gives you hope during hard times like my current life and my medical condition. Thank you. I love this piece. Great work.

Azhthar responds:

Wow! Thank you so much! This is the best feedback I´ve ever got for a piece of music which I made. That really means a lot to me... I don´t really know what to say...

Credits & Info


4.56 / 5.00

Mar 22, 2017
6:26 PM EDT
File Info
6.5 MB
4 min 43 sec

Licensing Terms

You are free to copy, distribute and transmit this work under the following conditions:

You must give credit to the artist.
You may not use this work for commercial purposes. *

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