you awoke like

January 14, 2014 8:53 PM

Pretty excited about this one. This was a weird kinda experimental duet I wrote a long time ago and I'm finally starting to mess around with it for reals. It features my lovely and talented friend Pat. As per usual, I could always use some advice. Tricky stuff starts around 1:07.

We may yet work on the vocal parts a bit. We're neither of us trained singers and it's hard as hell to get the parts to sink up just right. Still, I'm starting to feel good about how it's coming along. I'm going to tag it for the challenge, because it's chocked full of literary allusions.

like a man collecting light fixtures and unchecked power sources
like a white noise sunset burning brighter for the hand it forces
like a string of silent candles cutting across san fransisco
like 14 hour day that ends inside an empty bottle

like a patchwork sky in june all full of holes the sun can poke through
like the humming fields of locust that we dedicate our hearts to
like my love notes growing crooked teeth as they're ripped off the spiral
and the stewardess marries the sky as she walks down the aisle

like those contortionist children sleeping tangled up in seat-belts
faces pressed against the windows, heads so clean and quiet and peaceful
like a 22 year old trying to sleep parked inside a rest-stop
just a spring coat for a blanket and the rain won't shut the fuck up

like the racing of white blood cells just like ambulances gather
on a scene where flashing lights paint us in patriotic colors
limbs are raised and pressure is applied to blood we pray is clotting
as your ghost returns reluctantly to sleep inside your body

and you awoke

posted by es_de_bah (3 comments total)

I agree that the vocal parts could use some work, but I really like the instrumental parts and overall sound of this. There is an interesting "drive forward" to the music, which I think has to do with the quickly fluctuating/alternating notes you employ.

The lyrics are nothing short of spectacular. I mean, wow.

I have an idea for you -- what if you did this:

1) Temporarily remove the vocals
2) Timestretch the song to 50% (or maybe 75%) of the original tempo
3) Practice hard and then record vocals at half speed, allowing you to be more precise
4) Timestretch the slow vocals to fit the original tempo, then add them back into the song

I'm suggesting this because I think part of the problem is that your rhythmic cadences are not as nailed down as they ideally should be, and at some points it seems like you're struggling to get all those syllables in on time. So sometimes you're rushing certain parts and maybe slowing down in other parts.

I also wonder if the possible artifacts introduced by (at least low quality) timestretching might actually suit the song, both musically and lyrically. A bit like how Scorsese shot a surreal scene in that ambulance movie many years back by having the actors doing all their actions backwards, and then the tape was reversed for the final film, resulting in strange, somewhat unnatural -- but arresting -- motion that you couldn't quite put your finger on.

Production-wise, the vocals could use a de-esser or equivalent EQing. The sibilance is pretty heavy. Other than that, like I said, I really enjoy the soundscape you've crafted!
posted by edlundart at 11:31 PM on January 15, 2014

Beautiful. It's got that sunrise, road-trip, full of promise but tinged with melancholy feeling to me. Yeah, if you could get the talk-singing voice a little more in the pocket, I would buy listening to this as the credits roll after a great little film that outperformed its budget.
posted by umbĂș at 6:39 AM on January 16, 2014

thanks guys. I've got Pat working on the fast part. tis a tough one to nail down. I was toying with the idea of having him do every other line on different tracks and then overlaying them with a little bit of of spill over. I'll play around with that time stretching idea too. I'll post a soundcloud link here when I get it down.
posted by es_de_bah at 9:30 AM on January 16, 2014 [2 favorites]

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