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A Summer's Dream

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Author Comments

Hej!
So, I'm in Finland right now visiting LucidShadowDreamer and we're at his cabin in the woods and I gotta say, this place is one of the most inspiring places I've ever visited. Seeing as I somewhat forgot I'd submitted auditions for both the NGUAC and the NGADM this year, I was toying with the idea of creating separate songs for each competition. I decided I'd just be tactical with when I started a track so that they'd be within the rules of the timeframes to be able to submit to both competitions. I'm enjoying my time here too much.

I was really happy to be able to record on Alex's piano - this song started as an improvisation on the piano but I think it turned into a structured piece quite nicely. Although I can play the piano, I've never properly recorded it in a song due to not having a piano... which yknow, is a bit of a problem when it comes to recording the piano. I also ordered an Irish Low Whistle that arrived a few days ago. I was so frustrated trying to play it when I first got it, simply because my hands are kinda small and the holes are so far apart. I seem to be taking to it pretty quickly though thankfully.

Lyrics:

Through the trees
I feel the wind
A gentle breeze
A beckoning

And through the leaves
A summer’s dream
The scattered light
Komorebi

Follow the sound of the birds in the woods
Know that you’ll follow the path that you should
Chasing the whispers of forests of old
Through earthen wood and leaves of gold

Take my hand and come with me
And together we’ll be free
We’ll be lost and that’s okay, because we are in a dream
If you want to we can fly, looking down upon the sky
And we’ll never have to leave this world again

I recall
A memory
We’re on a boat
And I can see

Upon the lake
Beyond the sea
Reflections of
A future me

And right in that moment I wanted to fall
Into the future the mirror had shown
But the water was my now, even though I knew somehow
That the time we have will lead us there someday

Take my hand and come with me
For together we are free
We’ll be lost and that’s okay, because we are in a dream
If you want to we can fall, we can find the ocean’s call
And we’ll never have to leave this world again

Don’t forget
The melody
That brought you here to me

And if I should disappear
Call the melody you hear
Through your memory I’ll fly to you, though I will be a dream
Nothing’s ever as it seems

This is not how our story ends
We will see it through until the end
Remembering dreams that have past
Only faded memories last

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I really enjoy how much depth this song has, even though it's only two instruments and two singers.

etherealwinds responds:

Thank you very much! There's just the one singer, I'm singing both the melody and the harmonies ^ ^

This is an Official Review for both NGUAC and NGADM

Beginning Comments: I'm surprised to hear your voice as dry as this is. Now I can hear a lot more of your technique that you're using for your songs. Also congratulations on making it to round 2 of NGADM 2018.

Production / Mixing: Not much to pick apart here. The vocals blend well, the piano is placed in the background adequately.

Composition / Structure: I could get a sense of Finland influence. The piano was handled well as an accompaniment, and the harmonies are executed well. You definitely stick to the main theme well in terms of reoccurring tunes that you introduce through the piano. It's funny that there aren't many songs made for NG audio contests that feature a very structural verse-chorus pattern like this. Even that has a nice development. My favorite section is at 5:15, which I wish would have been introduced earlier and developed more. It was a cool and different theme and I loved the sound of it.

Sound Design: Not much to pick apart. The vocals are great, the piano has the correct delicate feel needed to add to this piece, and the whistle adds a nice element to it.

Ending Comments: It was calm and peaceful. It's nothing short I would have expected from you, I think you've fixed the structure issue I had with the NGUAC entry, so you have a benefit there. That chorus will definitely be stuck in my head for a day or so.

Score:

Production - 2

Composition - 2

Structure - 1.5

Sound Design - 2

Replay - 1.75

Total - 9.25

*Disclaimer - I have headphones that cancel out the magical properties of elven singing to help make sure you don't get an advantage through hypnosis.

I like the majestic piano at the beginning. Extended pause at :32 was a bit of a bold choice, but it sets up the pacing of the rest of the piece pretty well. Lyrics get better as the piece goes on. Very raw, simplistic, and descriptive at first, but the broader meaning behind your natural surroundings becomes more conspicuous the more you describe. Sometimes your voice sounds a bit strained, like at 1:07. Minimal though the instrumentation is, the I love the Low Whistle solos and the unfettered emotive quality of the vocals. The harmonies are great - both the vocals and the spacing of the chords. The instruments blend really well together, yet still feel like distinct melody lines. Admittedly, the piece does drag on for quite some time, though. It's beautiful music throughout, but it also doesn't have a strong sense of dynamism or directionality all the time. The slightly more energetic vibe in the texture starting at around the 5-minute mark actually helps this piece out a lot in that regard, though. Overall fantastic piece. Very majestic and heartfelt work, Jordi!

etherealwinds responds:

Hey TL! Thank you so much for the review and apologies for leaving my response so late. Often-times when I get a longer review, I read them whilst I'm not quite in the place to respond to them and then I forget :D

Another person mentioned the straining at 1:07 but I still don't hear it myself! I guess I'm so used to hearing my own voice haha! Yeah, I think I mentioned previously but the piano was actually just a 7 and a half minute improvisation so I cut out a few parts but it's still quite long. I noticed generally that longer songs seem to be in the process of becoming less popular - I think any song past 5 minutes has the tendency to bore people so I try to inject at least a lot of emotion and something different in the structure to not lose a listener. That's something I can of course improve on and I'll keep practising that too!

Once again, thanks for taking the time out of your day to review the track! <3

The piano. Wow. Not sure there's much I can say about it that will do it justice so I'll just say the playing is outstanding. Though I'm almost positive I've heard the exact melody at 3:04 in some anime. Even if I haven't, it - along with some less serious offenders - is fairly generic in composition.

The singing is somewhat hit or miss. I like that you're not belting - you have a good mix of being soft and resonant, the harmonizations sound excellent, just the right amount of vibrato, but you sing a bit flat at times and hearing you draw in breath is distracting at certain points. There are also a couple points (not consistently) where I can hear some vocal tension that makes you sound a tiny bit strained.

I don't want to say much on lyrics - years of rapping have made me obsessively picky about rhyme schemes and complexity, and without having a firm grasp on what this song is really about I think it's fair for me to try and point you in one direction or another.

Taken as a whole, this is a really pretty piece. Nothing about it strikes me as really groundbreaking, but there's an emotional depth to it that's very alluring. A few quirks with the vocals broke my immersion once or twice but this was genuinely a great listen.

etherealwinds responds:

Thank you very much for your review! :) yeah the part at 3:04 isn't exactly a groundbreaking melody, but it fit the part nicely! It's probably in quite a few songs; not any that I can pick out off the top of my head though. I'm glad you liked the piano!

I do like to minimise the gain on the individual breaths by about -6db and often-times I'll remove the breaths completely from harmonies so that they don't clash with each other - I don't like to remove them completely though as the vocals would sound super unnatural. ^^

I'm happy you enjoyed it for the most part!

Oh wow, this is incredible! Sometimes I forget that you play everything irl and I get impressed all over again. Not to mention your voice gets better with every song. Keep it up, and shoot for #1 in the NGADM this year! You can do it :D

etherealwinds responds:

I do enjoy working with instruments when I have access to the equipment that allows for a good enough recording experience :D thank you very much! I don't much mind where I come - just the push to make original music is always welcome.

Credits & Info


Listens
517
Faves:
11
Downloads
11
Votes
18
Score
4.53 / 5.00

Uploaded
Aug 7, 2018
5:35 PM EDT
Genre
World
File Info
Song
14.9 MB
6 min 31 sec
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