My style combines lo-fi video game sounds with dance, big sweeping orchestral lines, and piano performances.
first started writing music electronically using a tracker —
originally ModEdit, but I found my way to ModPlug Tracker (now OpenMPT).
I’ve since moved onto Reaper, but many of my pieces retain elements of
the demoscene and video game music sound. Combined with my classical
music and jazz piano background, many of my tracks don’t fit neatly into
any one genre.
This piece was written purely as a way to help me get to grips with a completely new music production workflow. With a new Komplete Kontrol S61 (which is fantastic) comes the need for a more MIDI-aware DAW; I’m trialling Cockos Reaper as it seems to be feature rich and reasonably priced. I don’t imagine I’ll leave OpenMPT entirely — I’ve been using it for over a decade now, and it’s ingrained in my muscle memory.
I’m still struggling with getting routing working the way I want in Reaper. It’s really easy to create 16 MIDI channels for a VSTi like Kontakt, and easy to map plugin outputs to separate outputs, but I can’t for the life of me work out how to have a MIDI input track also function as one of the outputs. I want to do this so that I can set up an output for each instrument in Kontakt, allowing me to use a single Kontakt instance to save on RAM and CPU cycles, and not have a thousand-and-three tracks to manage. If anyone has any suggestions, let me know!
This piece is performed “live” — the MIDI events for the drums, guitar, piano, bass, and strings are all recorded directly from the Kontrol (and tweaked slightly); I’m trying to find the best way of rapidly getting music down. It’s made a little more complex by the fact that I don’t have the world’s largest desk, so using the keyboard and mouse is now somewhat uncomfortable.
This piece starts out quietly, but moves into a fuller, orchestral and synthetic middle section. To my ear, it would work quite well in a game, with its emotive melody underpinned by a driving rhythm, parenthetically enclosed by an almost-melancholic processed piano.
Although originally conceived as a lyrical piano piece, this track is at its best in the central section, where bass and synth lead dominate (at least in my opinion). It’s somewhat experimental (there are some interesting sounds in the mix), but not, hopefully, too much so.
I love glitch kits. Perhaps its the strong transients or the unique timbre — whatever it is, though, they lend a unique sound to a piece. In this track a glitch kit is combined with a few synths, some tuned gongs, recorders, accordions, and other eclectic instruments to produce something that doesn’t fall neatly into any specific genre, but that’s hopefully nonetheless enjoyable.
This is a more down-beat, semi-acoustic, easy-listening pop track — just waiting for lyrics and vocals. For those interested, the primary chord progression is A, F#m7, Fmaj7, Esus7 – E. It’s a somewhat melancholy progression, suited to subtly-changing ostinati, and lightly-improvised piano and bass lines.
There are lots of Guitar Rig effects at play in this one, mutilating sounds from FM8, Massive, Battery, Kontakt, and Absynth. Guitar Rig has become my go-to VST effect — even though I don’t actually use guitars all that much in my music!
This track is, in many ways, a harkening back to my earlier compositions. Its structure is more straightforward, its arrangement is more natural and less synthetic, and it came about from a session in front of the piano. These elements form the basis of much of my earlier work, and, if I’m honest, they probably define my preferred method of composition.
Let me know what you think!
Well, it’s been a fair while since I last uploaded a piece of music — over two months, in fact! So here’s my latest piece.
This piece actually started out as an experiment — I recently got my hands on all sorts of shiny new toys, and my DAW got an awesome upgrade, so I couldn’t resist seeing what I could do with them.
I managed to use all but one of the products that came with Komplete to make this track — FM8, Massive, Reaktor, Guitar Rig, Kontakt, and Battery. Much fun. 😀
Hmm… For some reason, the version of this uploaded to thesixtyone gets some distortion on the bass during the intro section. I’ve tried uploading at various bitrates, multiple times, but it still keeps on happening. I think they must be doing some re-encoding. :/ Very annoying.