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Abstrack - Regular Lament

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There are little high pitch glitches in the mp3 version (NewGrounds only natively accepts the mp3 format). Here's the wav version -- in which you might hear a huge improvement in quality, depending on your speakers:


I know the end is a bit abrupt. I'm simply tired of waiting for new inspiration to make it longer, so I'm uploading now with what I've got. I tried to start with a deep melodic thing and then contrast with a half-melodic-half-chafe drop.

If you feel something is off, don't hesitate to comment. Criticism really helps to become a better person.

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Really great sound design imho, but there are some problems.


First and foremost, I’d say that instrumentation is a problem, and from the admittedly cursory amount of your previous songs I’ve heard, instrumentation seems to have been a consistent problem. Personally, this is how I think of instrumentation:

At minimum, one low element, one mid element, and one high element; at maximum, (roughly) one element per octave. Kick, snare, and other such primary rhythmic elements are always exempt.

...except by now, you ought to know that rules are made to be broken, haha. This rule tends to be broken in buildups, where a lack of bass could be used as a tool to give the song a bit more tension (though this rule is broken only when tasteful, of course). This rule could also be broken in intros and outros, to more gracefully enter and exit the listener’s awareness, I guess.

In all of this, you should focus on the fundamental pitch of any instrument when determining what range category it falls into. What I mean is, for example, if you have a piano part, you should use the fundamental pitches of the notes to determine whether you should count it as a low mid part or a high mid part (maybe both!). An example of a good time to break this rule would be if there happens to be a vocal part that you want to really “pop.” In that case, you can count it as both a mid AND a high element, to better account for higher harmonics, sibilance (S’s, T’s, etc.), and breath that you may want to highlight.

Just keep it tasteful, lol.


Secondly - yes I know this is an absolute novel - mixing. Different people will say different things about the overall goal of mixing, but as a producer, I think the most workable/tangible goal of mixing is to make each element’s presence match its importance. Yes, those are ambiguous, and yes, that will often require interpretation, but hey, that’s what’ll make your music unique, right? Here are some examples of these concepts:

Things that affect presence:

Things that are typically important:
-Vox (vocals)

Things that are typically not so important:

Importance is more subjective than presence. Importance wholly depends on what YOU want the song to be, whereas presence is simply the technical nuts-and-bolts of getting the mix to reflect your view of each element’s importance.


That’s all I got. Hopefully this helps some!


Abstrack responds:

Hmm! You are right about the "instrumentation problem". I never really though of the high+mid+low|octave rule you're talking about. I let instruments sometimes collide because of that. And yet, when you think about it, it's so much obvious.

I had heard of the concept of "mixing" before, but it was so much abstract... I'll concede it's still not extremely concrete. But now, because of your explanation, I can happily apply it to more than just the volume of instruments (*sigh* I was really dumb 3 minutes ago).

I wonder where you learned those concepts. They seem so much important (they must be "present" lol), and yet I never really heard any explanation about them.

Holy cow, thanks for your time spent writing this. That's going to be helpful as ****. People like you deserve free quadruple-chocolate cookies.

Awesome song <3333333333333333333

Good stuff!

Credits & Info


Waiting for 1 more vote

Dec 26, 2019
8:07 PM EST
File Info
5.4 MB
2 min 23 sec

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