Testing out my new Berlin Series Strings, Woodwind, Brass and Percussion (by Orchestral Tools) with a MIDI Realisation of the Greenpath Score from popular Steam Game Hollow Knight. For this first stage I used Emotional Viola/Violin by Harmonic Subtones to create graceful and authentic Portimento slides between notes in melodic passages as well as subtle harmonics up in the higher register. Then utilizing the characterful elements of the Herring Clarinet by Embertone when Woodwind has it's turn in the spotlight. An exercise like this will help to polish my Orchestral programming skills to create more convincing music overall. Audio will be available when the MIDI Adaptation is complete.
- Emotional Violin (Harmonic Subtones)
- Emotional Viola (Harmonic Subtones)
- Symphonic Harps (Orchestral Tools)
- Berlin Percussion (Orchestral Tools)
Composition Lesson with my student from Texas who is an aspiring and talented Video Game Composer. For this session, I analyzed my Ensemble piece "Water and I" which I had finalized this week. The analysis covers aspects across Harmony, Structure, Form, Rhythm, Mood, Register and Texture/Timbre as well as considering the overall context or purpose of the Music. The Audio is embedded and an extract of the Analysis is available below:
Began MIDI Realisation of my existing String Arrangement - Liszt's Nuages Gris for Harp and String Quintet. I am using my newfound staple Symphonic Harps by Orchestral Tools, as well as the Joshua Bell Violin (Embertone) and Tina Guo Cello (Cinesamples) for a more intimate/solo sound. I am contemplating making use of my more recent suitable purchases that are: Emotional Violin/Viola (Harmonic Subtones) and Chris Hein Solo Cello/Contrabass (Harmonic Subtones) as they offer a variety of techniques and play styles. Layered combination patches like Chamber Strings might also come in useful for this Orchestration. Audio will be available when the MIDI Adaptation is complete.
Embedding and syncing dozens of new Tracks.
Approaching potential new Clients
Began working on a Portfolio piece inspired by Dreams of William (embedded below) from the Life is Strange Game OST (Composed by Daughter). The aim is to record slides on Electric Guitar/Bass and have some Ambient Pads and Female Vocals to accompany the spaced-out chords. I want it to sound a little haunting but not too Dark. My aim is to have Vocals done by Federica Capretti (completed Vocals for me on Voxie Tactics and single releases) and Guitar by Prokhor Kuznetsov (completed recordings for Lucinda Dumpling).
Exciting announcement that I will be Composing the OST for the Visual Novel: Luna's Lovely Summer by PixaelSoft:
Completed the first Track for a Turn-based Rogue-lite Game being developed by a Team in South Korea.
Their Twitter tag is: @ObitsOw. The Library Area features this Cosy/Chill blend of Acoustic/Orchestral/Warm Electronic elements to contrast against the colder, more unnatural colours of the outside city:
Completed my MIDI Realisation of Nuages Gris which I started on April 24th. I chose to add in Percussive elements and advanced Strings techniques in order to enhance the cinematic appeal. I used a combination of Solo String Instruments and Groups to achieve a blend between intimate and larger textures at different moments within the piece:
Adapted a piece I had previously written as Strategy-based Game Music for an imagined Dungeon-based level. I firstly altered the staccato Strings to make them legato; fading in and out, before adding melancholic Piano writing building up to a climax where percussive elements strike and a Solo Cello shines in the spotlight in a new section. Using more traditional classical harmony, this piece creates a mixture between a dark cinematic and romantic style. Also taking inspiration from the Main Theme of the Video Game Elden Ring which uses a Dark and Cinematic Orchestral Score with Fantasy/Vocal scoring elements featured. Here are the two pieces side by side:
Spent the remainder of May and June finishing the OST for Luna's Lovely Summer by Pixaelsoft. Here is the full list of Tracks that were completed - the one's that are highlighted are shown in the player below as short extracts:
1. Title Screen
5. Luna's Theme
This week I made 3 Tracks for Skytilez - an Indie Game in development:
1. Puzzle Mode
This is the core essence of the Music, using hummed-out melodies by the Client and transferring/arranging that into an Orchestral Ensemble. Mainly Harp, Piano and Strings with some additions of Perc and Brass.
2. Battle Mode
This Track adds more percussive elements and more powerful sections with a rhythmic spine/increased layers to better enhance the battle element.
3. Future Cinematic Intro
The Client began Pinpointing specific sections to key moments in an imagined Animatic Intro that hasn't been created yet. I enhanced and changed a lot of the original Music from the Battle Mode in order to fit each scenario - even adding some Sci-Fi elements using Omnisphere for the Futuristic Robots which are taking over the land.
Client Review (Tim): "I just can't tell you how happy it is to have this melody as an actual track. It's been playing in my head for the longest time, and to actually hear it play in front of me almost made tears swell up!"
The other project I worked on this week was Closer - A Student Animation about a Snake that falls in love with a Penguin. The Animation features beautiful and cozy hand-drawn characters and surroundings with a Romantic/Melancholic score that follows the heartfelt and comedic elements of the short story. Below is an Extract from the Soundtrack featuring Emotionally diverse Orchestral writing:
Over these two weeks in July I worked on Voxie Tactics OST Reworks. This involved moving MIDI Data into new VST Instruments of a higher quality; recomposing existing material so it worked better in this new context; and extending/refining existing material. Since beginning Soundtrack work on this project 15 months ago I have come a long way so it's important to respect this and update Tracks accordingly to improve the overall quality of the final product. The specific Tracks/Maps I worked on were:
- Placement Mode (calm and contemplative Music that plays whilst your Voxies are being strategically placed onto the Battle grid/arena)
- Grass (standard Fantasy style battle music with medieval/action/magical stylistic elements)
- Desert (a unique Hybrid style featuring Arabian/Western/Indian styles as well as cinematic aspects inspired by the score from Dune (film - scored by Hans Zimmer)
- Forest (a magical, curious and somewhat mysterious style featuring some powerful female vocals by Federica capretti)
- Winter (Icy textures and sharp percussive elements surrounding a somewhat darker Orchestral core)
- Cave (Bells and Deeper atmospheres are heard as we delve into the mysterious unknown of the underground)
- Graveyard (Creepy/Spooky vibes as well as more dramatic Orchestral passages inspired by the score from Hollow Knight (Game - scored by Christopher Larkin) to offer plenty of variety and timbral exploration.
- Mountain (Orchestral/Epic writing with a much fuller sound; featuring core aspects of soaring Woodwinds and dramatic Brass.
New Virtual Instruments that were used are the Berlin Series and Symphonic Harps by Orchestral Tools; Spitfire's Albion One/Solstice/Chamber Strings; Saga by Redroom Audio; Eastwest's Stormdrum and Symphonic Orchestra and SoundIron's Circle/Noah Bells.
During August I took part in 2 Gamejams: Summer Slow Jam and a MiniJam. Unfortunately I was unable to take part in Spooktober due to time constraints and Holidays this month Wales+Scotland. The Minijam project had an interesting aesthetic but the Animation style and playthrough wasn't particularly well executed so we ranked in about halfway, the music is Dark, Epic and Gloomy with some Ambient/Watery Synths:
The Summer Slow Jam was more of a success despite the irony of this jam being non-competitive! The 'judges' streamed playthroughs of each game and ours received particular acknowledgement from the audience and Streamers for being highly interesting and coherent with the Theme. You are inside a dream and have to use Point & Click as well as Zoom mechanics in order to find your way out. There are strange food creatures and animations you might expect to take place in a dream; with music inspired by Oneohtrix Point Never and Henry Mancini's The Pink Panther theme - things become quite strange...(https://yorikv.itch.io/zoom-quest)
During this week I worked on a Soundtrack Theme for Sabie's game Sweeter Yesterday (https://twitter.com/magicabiedev), using an Ambient melancholic/sweet style with Piano/Tuned Perc inspired by the Mad Father OST Theme - the two can be compared below:
I made a Sci-Fi/Action Hybrid track for Casual Blade (Robot sword fighting game for Android)this week. Lots of the Sfx used high frequency sword clashes so I made sure to try and avoid any conflicts with the music:
I also tried my hand at some VA work, knowing I have a lot to improve on I started off with a GameJam project taking the role of Evil Ruler/ Narrrator for the Game's introduction dialogue. I used some Pitch-alteration (-1 whole tone) as well as Audio Cleanup (Izotope RX 10)to neaten things up. I'd say not bad as a first attempt and the team even found it entertaining and practical for their uses.
This week I created a Magical Forest Track using solo VSTs as well as some grouped strings, an excellent opportunity to test out the authenticity of some recent purchases as well as utilising old ones:
Piano - The Gentleman (NI)
Harp - Symphonic Harps (Orchestral Tools)
Flute - Claire Flute Virtuoso (8dio)
Strings - Chris Hein Solo Cello (Chris Hein) and Albion One (Spitfire)
Chimes - Wind Chimes (8dio)
Clarinet - Herring Clarinet (Embertone)
Percussion - Caisa Drum - 8dio
During this time I was contacted by a Client from the past who previously discussed musical references with me for his game Decarnation. I was given a tight turnaround on a spacious Avant-Garde Horror Track - the track will be shown in due course once the Demo is out (https://twitter.com/atelierQDB)
For the first 2 weeks of October I had Covid-19 so was unable to do much work. I did however manage to finish a track for the game Tritone (https://twitter.com/TritoneTheGame)which is a a Zelda inspired action adventure game with a focus on colour, mysterious technology and puzzles. I worked on with fellow FB friend Joe Pykett. Existing Music in this video was created by Mike Lane who has now moved on to work with Riot Games!