• Empire of the Fallen - Open to critical review and collaboration!
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  • Monty Cash Music
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« Last Edit: January 14, 2020, 12:55:04 by Monty Cash Music »
First off, I'd like to say that if there is/was ever a hypercritical review button - please consider it to be turned on!   ::thumb:: :whistle: :thumbsup:

Be as critical as you can about every element from tracks to mixing to panning to reverbs to effects to whatever. I'm not looking for pats on the back or congratulations - I'm officially lost with this song!  :-\

I've listened to it so many times, I've no longer got an ear to hear what is good for it or not. There are so many elements, and it's very hard to keep track of in a simple DAW like Audacity on a free laptop.

But... it's fun to make a song that can just build and build and build with a many faceted crescendo of elements. I feel I am far from finished with it but am learning lots from its production. This is the longest I've ever spent on producing any one individual song.

Also! I'm looking for collaboration on it, so if you have any ideas for extra elements in the spaces - You're welcome to shoot me a track and I may just include it (it's tuned to D, yes very low yo). I can only promise your name on anything as I am street performer that lives on pennies, well technically 'crowns' (Denmark) at the moment.  My email is montycashmusic@gmail.com  ::OSMAN::

So without further adieu here is the private link which I have only posted on this forum... and here are the lyrics:

https://soundcloud.com/montycashmusic/empire-ofthe-fallen-track-for-songwriters-in-the-kitchen/s-nAwUe

All the worlds that we've known, they have fallen
All the dreams that we've dreamt, they have fallen
All the flowers and the trees, they have fallen
All the birds all the bees, they have fallen

All the wounds that we've bled, they have fallen
All the wars that we've fed, they have fallen
All the games we've played, they have fallen
All the nations and creeds - have fallen

All the fires that we've lit, they have fallen
All the fields that we've burned, they have fallen
All the banners we've raised, all have fallen
All the people been taised, they have fallen

People of the world, let go
People of the world, let go
People of the world, let go
People of the world, let go

All the causes we've led, they have fallen
All the colours we've beheld, they have fallen
All the words we speak, they be fallen
All the love and all the greed - has fallen

===
Find updates on my travels and music on http://steemit.com/@montycashmusic


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That's an interresting sounding... but in my opinion, the 'military' sounding from background it either too low, or almost useless.
If this was my own mixing, I'd probably put this a bit more upfront, to really hear the beat of the military steps, etc, which can be great.

Another -free- critic would be about 3:40-3:51, as I feel like the guitar is not 'in-tune' with rest of the song... but I maybse should listen to it many other times to get of an opposite opinion :)

Regarding your request for me/one to add to it... I'd pass on this one, as I don't think any addition should be made... I'd rather epurate it a bit, personally...

But don't get me wrong: it's a good one nevertheless!! :)

Cheers!


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« Last Edit: January 14, 2020, 13:21:06 by Monty Cash Music »
@Sebzzz

Thanks for your honesty! That's what I'm looking for. Thanks for stating it as -free- because I wasn't going to pay you for it anyway.  :pompom: Nor am I getting paid myself. haha (have you tried selling music on Bandcamp? oh the whistling wind and the passing tumble weed) I'm simply doing it for the passion of a great song, it will end up on Soundcloud, maybe get about 50 plays and a few pats on the back and maybe my friend in Queensland, Australia will make a quirky video clip for it on youtube that will get about 31 plays. That's the reality of it. Fame is a tightly controlled circuit with false smiles and professional arse sucking.... (oops, I went too far).

===

Aside from all this whining,
I will increase the volume of the military steps I think, that's a great idea, they were originally very loud, it's just my feet stomping through an effect on the Zoom H4n.

The guitar part you mention from 3.40 to 3.51 is a loose open chord bit, it does sound a bit noisy in general.

The guitar was the first track recorded, it doesn't mean it can't be re-recorded from scratch.  It could also cut out of the guitar for a segway into another instrument with no drums for a drop and build - I might have to borrow a kemanche or a violin off someone. Or even get a track from a certain interested party like @oorlab if interested to make a dramatic piece... (you play violin I believe, my friend).

Anyways, looking for more brutal honesty! You're amazing @Sebzzz . And I'll finally get to working on that track you DO want to collaborate on.


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Haha.
...by "free" I meant I was unsure, and may be a critic with no basement... never meant to get paid for it :-D
(and aI totally agree on "if you want money, don't make music" part... that's 2 sepaarate worlds. Number of *real* plays and *real* likes are what we're probably all looking for :))

Keep rocking on, I like your music!

Cheers!


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@Sebzzz Thanks man, I'll try my best not to bite everyone that speaks...

@Pleudoniem was my first casualty. Hello, by the way! You're welcome to let loose on this one! I would actually be very grateful.


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@Monty Cash Music  - sure I can add violin, will listen to your song -asap. Your private link posted here is not private anymore. Not that there is a big chance of discovery, but just saying. As far as I know  the postings on this Forum are public.
recommending https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/How_Music_Works "How music works", book by David Byrne.


Dang! I really enjoyed this. 

I think you have the mix pretty spot on.

Here are a few things I would do:

- Add a Dynamic EQ on the guitar to tame a little of the harshness around 4k up.  (You could also add a deesser to do the same thing, you want to set the threshold until it's barely working)

- Automation to add more depth and dynamics to the track, currently, it's a good mix, but each section of the song is at the same level,  by making certain sections stand out, you can add another dimension to the track, doesn't have to be extreme.  One cool technique is to pan the guitars wider on a specific section, this will make the track magically sound wider and help to distinguish a section from the others.  You could also use automation on the sound design, like add a filter in or adjust its volume for specific sections.

-  I would try to bring back some of the bass of the guitar, overall I really like how you have the guitar sounding, so it would be best to bus the signal and then low pass filter the bus, until your left with 500hz and below, add distortion and try adding a boost to 80hz / 100hz / 300hz and see what sounds good, usually best to avoid boosting 500 hz as the risk of sounding boxy is high especially on guitar.  Then drop the volume out, and increase it up until it is barely heard, but you'll feel it!  - You can also automate this, and have it hit slightly hard on the first beat of a new section for subtle emphasis.

Hope it helps! 



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« Last Edit: January 14, 2020, 19:53:24 by Monty Cash Music »
@oorlab Violin would be amazing. The 'violin' sample in there is actually a kemenche sample when I had access to one at my Iranian friend's house. That sample is not static and can be moved around or not at all to accommodate your work. It will be great to see what you come up with.

As for it being private, well it's private from the other ten people that might listen to my music. This track is a development of an improv session I recorded about two years ago in Copenhagen. Also on my SoundCloud... I'll go fish it up. (Edit: found it! https://soundcloud.com/montycashmusic/acoustic-free-form-empire-of-the-fallen )

@Dara these are great suggestions, I will certainly do some tampering soon. I felt the dynamics were a bit dead but wasn't sure how to fix it. One day it sounds great and the next it sounds dead, my ear is not reliable. Thus why I'm asking for help on it. I might also rerecord the central male vocal with more punch. I want it to sound more direct.

I feel the addition of an extra improv element like a violin in parts would complete the build. Also increasing the amount of voices in the ending harmonies to make it sound like an army is accumulating over the time period of the song.

After fixing the dynamics and bass of the guitar channels it might just open up like an oyster and give me its fucking pearl! Haha (ok that sounds a bit raunchy but what the hey)


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It's also just great to get some practical positive feedback in general. This song sat on my laptop for a month doing nothing because I just couldn't figure out what was wrong with it and I started to think it wasn't worth it. I just have no reference point.

So thank you! It will be great to produce this song to a quality that other songs can also follow.


Yeah, it sounds like your suffering from ear fatigue, I find it best to take a break when that happens, just listen to other music and you'll quickly rest and reset your ears.  Also by using a reference track, one that sounds great to you, it will help to keep your ears on point when mixing.


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Ok, I've had a good hack.

I'm only using Audacity so I can't put any effects inline or on the 'send' or whatever lingo you fancy music people use.  :P

@Dara

https://soundcloud.com/montycashmusic/empire-of-the-fallen-for-kitchenettes-take-2/s-y1K1p

Take 2

What I've done -
- I didn't compress the fuck out of it at the master.
- I added 3 db of treble to the master

- There are now three stereo guitar tracks, one has above 4k cut down considerably
- one is more natural, I widened the stereo
- one is a bass dominant track with distortion added on a low volume
- I've panned the first two left and right

- I duplicated the drum track which is actually an irish drum (Bodhran) that was sitting on my friend's wall, it sounds like hitting a dead cat because it needs to be heated up on the fire, it now has a stereo track and a mono track instead of just a mono track

- duplicated certain vocals and changed the pitch artificially to create a more chorus sound, then added more towards the end for an accumulative effect

- I added more explosions at the end (these are actually recordings from videos I took at new years in the netherlands in Enschede, I couldn't believe how many fire works they set off, holy shit you guys are crazy as f**)

- I increased the volume of the boots in general from the start of the Bodhran drum track

- I increased the volume of the beginning part of coming back into the verse bit after the bit at 3.40 - 3.51 that @Sebzzz doesn't like
- I increased the volume of all vocals on the last 'let go'

- I added a wah wah to that bit at 3.40 - 3.51 to one of the guitar tracks to do the whole, 'now we're going under water' thing - @Sebzzz - maybe you like it better now

I think that's it

---

Thanks @Dara for the great tips, I am by no means a pro and it really helps to have someone put it out there like that.

@oorlab An erratic violin solo would fit in 3.51 to 4.10 to crescendo after the wah wah bit and then continue following the vocals until the end, with a sop piece post finish if you feel it would fit. I love creating a threatric feel to things.

---


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Still open for more critical suggestions, I only just had a crack at it now because I suddenly got motivated.


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« Last Edit: January 15, 2020, 00:58:38 by oorlab »
@Monty Cash Music   - interesting (as in arousing my curiosity) song,  cool soundscape in the intro. I think I could send you some violin, but it will be next week from monday onwards that I will have some time for that. You could send me a download link, for a mix, or loose tracks if you like.


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@oorlab No prob, link on its way.


Sounding good!! Although I preferred the guitar without the wah effect haha, might just be me though.  You could duplicate that guitar section and have both the guitar and wah effect at the same time, might work.  - duplicating the track essentially acts the same as having a bus track.

Those harmonies would sound great with a reverb hall or room with a longish decay, like 1.4ish maybe a little less, the string responses will sound great with possibly the same reverb or a nice plate effect.  Without buses you’ll have to duplicate the harmony section, wash them fully in reverb, then blend them against your current signal. 

Sound great as is though!



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