Silvan Sanctuary (possible replacement for "Elf land")

Create music and sound effects for mainline or user-made content.

Moderators: Forum Moderators, Developers

User avatar
Telaron
Posts: 453
Joined: December 30th, 2009, 7:58 pm
Location: U.S.A.

Re: Silvan Sanctuary (possible replacement for "Elf land")

Post by Telaron »

Are any of these samples free?
Check out the FOSS game Sumwars
Wish I had more time for composing music...

User avatar
Tyler Johnson
Music Contributor
Posts: 264
Joined: April 20th, 2008, 11:47 pm
Contact:

Re: Silvan Sanctuary (possible replacement for "Elf land")

Post by Tyler Johnson »

What happened to the first note/chord? It sounded abrupt, like it was a sudden Fade-In. It might have just been the mp3 though.

You definitely know how to color the sound with your chords and modulations, I like this aspect of your music. I never get a "predictable" sense with this at all.

The only thing I can think of, is the very last segment, maybe the last 10 seconds or so after the cymbal crescendo. This seems like a new idea, which is great. But I would rather hear you develop the other ideas you had further instead of starting something new. I don't know, I'd have to hear more of what you come up with, but the piece is maybe 1 minute long and there are 4 different "themes" going on. I would just suggest to develop one of the themes further before adding something new.

It's a really fitting piece of music for elves, but to me it sounds scored to a picture, where as it's going to just be music by itself, and when ideas are thrown in the piece can sound schizophrenic :D

I want to hear more though!

-Tyler

User avatar
West
Retired Lord of Music
Posts: 1173
Joined: October 30th, 2006, 7:24 am
Location: In the philotic connections between ansibles.
Contact:

Re: Silvan Sanctuary (possible replacement for "Elf land")

Post by West »

Telaron wrote:Are any of these samples free?
I believe that was what my previous post said, yes. ;) The clarinet and glocken can be found here. As for KBH Choir, Celli 0.0.1 and Steinway Concert Grand, just google 'em.
Tyler Johnson wrote:What happened to the first note/chord? It sounded abrupt, like it was a sudden Fade-In. It might have just been the mp3 though.
It's an Expression glitch. I must have stopped playback in the middle of a part with Expression data and then rendered the tune, so there's a split second when the Expression jumps from the previous value to the fade-in at the beginning. It's obviously not supposed to be that way, but I didn't notice it until I had already rendered and converted the tune to mp3 and by then I couldn't be bothered to redo it.
Tyler Johnson wrote:You definitely know how to color the sound with your chords and modulations, I like this aspect of your music. I never get a "predictable" sense with this at all.
That's a great compliment, thank you. Sometimes I worry that my progressions sound too contrived, like I'm jumping between keys and modes just for the heck of it, but that is really how I write music.
Tyler Johnson wrote:The only thing I can think of, is the very last segment, maybe the last 10 seconds or so after the cymbal crescendo. This seems like a new idea, which is great. But I would rather hear you develop the other ideas you had further instead of starting something new. I don't know, I'd have to hear more of what you come up with, but the piece is maybe 1 minute long and there are 4 different "themes" going on. I would just suggest to develop one of the themes further before adding something new.
Hey! It's actually closer to two minutes!

Just kidding, you make a very good point. This is something I struggle with in all of my music. The thing is, once I've spent a long time composing and recording a part of a piece, it always feels like I just want to get on with it and move to the next part -- even if what I've written is just 20 seconds long. I never occurs to me that a part might be too short until later (and if someone doesn't point it out, it might not occur to me at all). But you're absolutely right, there's too much going on in too little time. I think I have an idea on how to extend the piece though, so I'm going to experiment a bit.

User avatar
Tyler Johnson
Music Contributor
Posts: 264
Joined: April 20th, 2008, 11:47 pm
Contact:

Re: Silvan Sanctuary (possible replacement for "Elf land")

Post by Tyler Johnson »

West wrote: Sometimes I worry that my progressions sound too contrived, like I'm jumping between keys and modes just for the heck of it
Contrived? Not at all! In fact, that's what makes your music unique.

I distinctly remember last year when I was living in New York, I had all the Wesnoth music on my iPod, and I was walking down the street and TKiD came on, and the middle section where you modulate from C major to C minor 6, I remember thinking "Whoa, how'd he do that??"

Because modulating from a major chord to THAT chord's minor is tricky, but you pulled it off nicely! So no, your music is not contrived, it sets you apart from "mainstream" chord progressions.

And for sure keep the modal stuff in this piece, it works great! :D

User avatar
West
Retired Lord of Music
Posts: 1173
Joined: October 30th, 2006, 7:24 am
Location: In the philotic connections between ansibles.
Contact:

Re: Silvan Sanctuary (possible replacement for "Elf land")

Post by West »

Tyler Johnson wrote:Because modulating from a major chord to THAT chord's minor is tricky, but you pulled it off nicely!
Maybe because I didn't know it was tricky? :)

User avatar
CheeseLord
Posts: 147
Joined: February 19th, 2009, 11:07 am
Location: Knagla

Re: Silvan Sanctuary (possible replacement for "Elf land")

Post by CheeseLord »

West wrote:Sometimes I worry that my progressions sound too contrived, like I'm jumping between keys and modes just for the heck of it
I don't care if it's contrived or not, just that your music is awesome!!
West wrote:I believe that was what my previous post said, yes. ;) The clarinet and glocken can be found here. As for KBH Choir, Celli 0.0.1 and Steinway Concert Grand, just google 'em.
The .box link has broke. Also, KBH choir is on sf2midi, which doesn't work. Celli 0.0.1 is also vry hard to find, like violins 0.0.3 because of the vague name.


I'm in a bit of a hurry right now, so sry for seeming like a surly prat in this comment with short, grumpy sentences :(
Lord of Cheese.....especially Parmesan!!!
None shall stand against the Dwarfs in their homeland

Top 3 quotes by a developer:

1. Locked
2. Do it yourself
3. "No"

User avatar
West
Retired Lord of Music
Posts: 1173
Joined: October 30th, 2006, 7:24 am
Location: In the philotic connections between ansibles.
Contact:

Re: Silvan Sanctuary (possible replacement for "Elf land")

Post by West »

CheeseLord wrote:The .box link has broke.
D'oh! I must have copied the url while I was logged in. This should work. I've uploaded the celli 0.0.1 soundfont in case anyone wants it.
CheeseLord wrote:Also, KBH choir is on sf2midi, which doesn't work.
KBH Choir. Make sure to grab the strings as well while you're there. It's just a typical 'full ensemble' patch but it sounds good and it's excellent for roughing out string parts.

User avatar
West
Retired Lord of Music
Posts: 1173
Joined: October 30th, 2006, 7:24 am
Location: In the philotic connections between ansibles.
Contact:

Re: Silvan Sanctuary (possible replacement for "Elf land")

Post by West »

Another update.

The violins in the intro now play a pattern similar to the one after the timp crescendo. The first half of the piano part (which also features the same pattern) has been extended by repeating a few measures and adding a brief reiteration of the main theme. I'm also thinking of adding something more inbetween the first and second half of the piano part (~1:11), though I'm not sure what. Aside from that I've changed a few things here and there, nothing major.

New reverb IR, now using one from this package.

Edit: That reverb is terrible! I listened to the tune just now and I can't believe I thought that sounded great earlier today. I must have been suffering from really bad ear fatigue. The timbre is all wrong, it's nothing like what I was aiming for. It just sounds boxy and unmusical. Ugh.

Let's try it again. This is a headphone mix though so who knows, maybe it's even worse.

User avatar
Sapient
Inactive Developer
Posts: 4453
Joined: November 26th, 2005, 7:41 am
Contact:

Re: Silvan Sanctuary (possible replacement for "Elf land")

Post by Sapient »

The piece definitely feels more coherent now that you added that reiteration of the main theme. I think the mood is working very well (mystical, healing, otherworldly) right up until the end where it gets less developed... obviously that part is in progress but I like where you are going with it.
http://www.wesnoth.org/wiki/User:Sapient... "Looks like your skills saved us again. Uh, well at least, they saved Soarin's apple pie."

User avatar
West
Retired Lord of Music
Posts: 1173
Joined: October 30th, 2006, 7:24 am
Location: In the philotic connections between ansibles.
Contact:

Re: Silvan Sanctuary (possible replacement for "Elf land")

Post by West »

Yet another update. I could really use some opinions on this version. I have extended the middle part of the tune, but I'm not sure how well it works and I don't want to add/change anyhting more until I know what you think.

The thing is, I'm now using three different variations of the same piano figure and I'm fearing it might be a tad repetitive. The other instruments play completely different things and they key and mood changes, but still. Does it sound unimaginative? Writing for piano isn't my strength so it's incredibly hard coming up with interesting stuff, especially since I don't want to wander off into some entirely new theme again. The whole point was to extend and elaborate on what's already there.

As you can hear, I've incorporated a more 'true' version of Doug Kaufman's elf theme. I want to sort of remind the listener of the melody, so that the variation on it during the majestic part towards the end will be more effective. However, there's virtually no transitions before and after the new part so try and ignore that for the moment.

On a completely unrelated note, I'm listening to the tune right now and suddenly it seems that the flute is too loud. I wonder if I might have accidentaly raised its level (or lowered something else), because I think it was fine before. Or maybe it's just ear fatigue again.
Sapient wrote:The piece definitely feels more coherent now that you added that reiteration of the main theme. I think the mood is working very well (mystical, healing, otherworldly) right up until the end where it gets less developed... obviously that part is in progress but I like where you are going with it.
Thanks Sapient! And yeah, the end is still just a sketch. I want to make sure I'm reasonably happy with the piece up to that point before I go any further.

User avatar
SkyOne
Posts: 1310
Joined: January 3rd, 2009, 7:23 pm

Re: Silvan Sanctuary (possible replacement for "Elf land")

Post by SkyOne »

Mmm... Nice! This is very nice. Each time I listen to your music, I lose my confidence to create music myself. This is not just from music skills. You have something naturally.

There is something like C#m7-5 (half-diminish)->F#->Bm7-5->E (sounds like it for me) at the middle. That is beautifully performed. I also like the part of Dm->A->Dm->A pretty much in this music.

I can imagine in deep mountains with a lot of nature on this music. Creeks carry clear water and birds are singing at everywhere. It's beautiful. I like this one more than E.T.soundtrack.:smile:
Fate of a Princess/feedback thread: "What is in own heart that is the most important, not who you are."
Drake Campaign: Brave Wings/feedback thread, Naga Campaign: Return of the Monster, Saurian Campaign: Across the Ocean
Northern Forces - now on 1.12 server

User avatar
West
Retired Lord of Music
Posts: 1173
Joined: October 30th, 2006, 7:24 am
Location: In the philotic connections between ansibles.
Contact:

Re: Silvan Sanctuary (possible replacement for "Elf land")

Post by West »

I keep plugging away at this. Changes this time around:

- I replaced the 1st violins with EWQL samples and re-recorded the whole performance as it wasn't possible to do a drop-in replacement; velocity and expression values got all screwy and doing it over was easier than tweaking it by hand. The violins still need work but at least I got rid of that annoying lagginess.

- Replaced the celli soundfont with EWQL celli. They seem to work without any major edits, though the velocity still sounds off in places.

- EQ'd both 1st and 2nd violins a bit to make them less thin and screechy.

- Added a two-bar pickup to the intro. I'm actually going to add some stuff before that, so imagine those violins fading in on top of a woodwind chord.

- Removed the harp and violas from the intro and panned the choir off to the right to make the arrangement less dense.

- Added a solo celli and oboe to the new part. Not sure about the oboe.

- Other small edits here and there.

Now, as I didn't get any comments on the new part, I'll just go ahead and assume that either a) you think it works fine, or b) you don't care and haven't listened to it. Either way I'll just keep the part the way it is and add a transition to the following part where the tempo picks up. So don't come telling me one week from now that it's too short or doesn't fit in or something -- you had your chance ;)
SkyOne wrote:Mmm... Nice! This is very nice. Each time I listen to your music, I lose my confidence to create music myself. This is not just from music skills. You have something naturally.
Thank you SkyOne. But please, don't lose heart -- try to let the music inspire you instead.
SkyOne wrote:It's beautiful. I like this one more than E.T.soundtrack.:smile:
Wow. That's an amazing compliment, thank you! Of course, you didn't say how much you like the E.T. soundtrack, but I'll just assume that it actually is a compliment :)

User avatar
Tyler Johnson
Music Contributor
Posts: 264
Joined: April 20th, 2008, 11:47 pm
Contact:

Re: Silvan Sanctuary (possible replacement for "Elf land")

Post by Tyler Johnson »

About half way through, the music cuts out for a second. I'm assuming this was a rendering error and not meant for the final version :D If it was, I would suggest against keeping it in. :wink:

I really like where you're going with this West, and it's starting to develop and gain more and more structure with every update you show us.

Harmonically, this is great! :D Like I've said before, I really like your chord progressions and modulations.

Honestly the only thing I can think to say as far as critiques is the very last couple of notes in the celli, I believe they're the EWQL samples...I liked it better with your old samples. Try layering them maybe to give more body but pan them slightly apart. I guess it's just hard for me to listen to EWQL strings by themselves, layered with other libraries they sound good.

And also in some areas, the flute notes get buried in the harmonies. I don't know how you could fix that without dropping levels or panning, but some notes are not distinguishable in the phrasing (most notably at the very beginning).

I like the Oboe and the Bassoon you added :D

Great work, keep us updated!

-Tyler

User avatar
West
Retired Lord of Music
Posts: 1173
Joined: October 30th, 2006, 7:24 am
Location: In the philotic connections between ansibles.
Contact:

Re: Silvan Sanctuary (possible replacement for "Elf land")

Post by West »

Tyler Johnson wrote:About half way through, the music cuts out for a second. I'm assuming this was a rendering error and not meant for the final version :D If it was, I would suggest against keeping it in. :wink:
If you mean the place at 1:36 where everything fades out and there's a pause, that's where I'm going to add a transition. If not, then the file must be corrupted. I haven't listened to the uploaded one.
Tyler Johnson wrote:Honestly the only thing I can think to say as far as critiques is the very last couple of notes in the celli, I believe they're the EWQL samples...I liked it better with your old samples. Try layering them maybe to give more body but pan them slightly apart. I guess it's just hard for me to listen to EWQL strings by themselves, layered with other libraries they sound good.
Well, the end of the piece is just... not finished. I simply stopped mid-phrase because I didn't know exactly how to continue. So please ignore that part, when the celli keeps playing and the other strings drop out... it's not supposed to be that way. The reason I chose the EWQL celli was because they have a more distinct attack, unlike the celli 0.0.1 soundfont which makes the celli parts sound like they're dragging way behind the beat.
Tyler Johnson wrote:And also in some areas, the flute notes get buried in the harmonies. I don't know how you could fix that without dropping levels or panning, but some notes are not distinguishable in the phrasing (most notably at the very beginning).
This is weird. I've listened to the piece on four different setups (nearfields, closed-back headphones, earbuds, hi-fi speakers) and I have no problems at all distinguishing the flute. Especially not after I cleaned up the arrangement in the beginning. In fact, the flute even feels a bit too loud in places. What are you listening to this on, something with heavily scooped mids?
Tyler Johnson wrote:Great work, keep us updated!
Thanks, will do!

PPH
Posts: 143
Joined: January 13th, 2009, 12:52 am

Re: Silvan Sanctuary (possible replacement for "Elf land")

Post by PPH »

Woah! This has changed a lot since last time I listened to it. It's turning out great! Orchestration is more complex, and I like the way you use the woodwinds. I find woodwinds are tricky. Many composers fail when using them and others don't even try. But you are using them well.

I ignored what has to be ignored (the missing transition and the missing ending). The only criticism I have is this:

-The beginning sounds strange to me. I liked it best when it started with a simple, straightforward chord followed by the main melody. Somehow, when the melody comes, it feels wrong to my ears, as if it shouldn't come after the chords that come before. Now, this might be because I grew accustomed to the previous beginning. But maybe the harmony that comes before the melody is ambiguous? I'm not so learned in theory, but maybe my ears interpret the harmony in a way that makes the melody sound out of place, and you and other people don't because you expect what is coming? I don't know if what I'm saying makes sense, but I listen to it time and again, and it still feels strange. I asked my wife, and she also found it strange when the melody starts.

-Near 1:00, the tempo variations to make the piece more expressive seem to be too much. But this may be totally subjective. However, I prefer to speak my mind. If you disagree, you should ignore my comment :D

Post Reply