Grand Narrows - Savages [WIP, Synth-Pop, Moombahton?]

One morning, one draft. Inspired by the new Sweet Pads pack
Intended to be finished as a vocal track.

Draft 6:
https://soundcloud.com/grandnarrows/savages-draft-6/s-cgZcT

 
Thoughts, comments, feedback all welcome. :+1:

 
[Edit]

Track now at demo stage.
Closing this thread.

Thanks for the input.
Genuinely helpful and appreciated.

I like how the lead takes off right after ~2:45, all the sounds play off each other really nicely. The drum work and sample selection are spot on too for the piece, IMO.

Sounds good! I know you’re still looking for a vocalist and it’s taking time, but definitely would love to hear how that sounds once it’s in place and how the structure will evolve to fit the vocals

Thanks.

It’s a draft at the mo, especially structurally.
It’s at least a minute longer than it should ideally be, so needs a lot of fat trimming.

With the main chorus melody only appearing on the stroke of 3:00, Max Martin would have a fit, falling well short of his ‘first chorus within 50 seconds’ rule. :wink:

Once I start to properly label sections, etc… it’ll start to take a better shape.
(I’m also editing down ‘You Don’t Know’ as well, but got side-tracked with this inspiration tangent.)

However, I think the core is there. I don’t think it’s too far off from SC ‘Demo Instrumental’ stage, which I can then include in my trawling for vocalists.)

This is really engaging and interesting (speaking to your draft 2). I’m definitely drawn to what I assume are the chorus portions: what happens at 3:41-4:25 is epic, and I’m left wanting more of it. It reminds me of a Gorillaz (feat. Little Dragon) track, Empire Ants, where they start what would be a brilliant retro-synthy jam at the end but it gets faded out way too soon. Proper out-fading is a bit of a lost art, but were you so inclined, you could do something similar – just don’t hold back.

I don’t have a strong sense of the verses, but then again I’m not a vocals person; they were harder for me to connect with. I had the “something’s missing” feeling, which may literally be true in this case, but I’ve been spoiled by the likes of Royksopp who somehow manage to be equally solid with/without vocals (e.g., Vision One). If you wanted to pull off something similar, this track would be a great candidate. Overall, nice work, and I’d be interested to hear more along the way.

P.S. I’ve never seen a W like that in a font before, and I’m always looking – impressive!

Thanks for the feedback.

I checked out the Gorillaz track and see what you mean. It’s an intriguing little section they start, but as you say, it’s so short-lived.

Your Royksopp reference is curious as there isn’t any difference for the music before the verse and the (first) verse. The introduction of the vocal is the only change.
(I compared the vocal version to the instrumental.)

I wanted to keep the verses more stripped back, as I suspect that I don’t typically leave enough space for vocals, including vocal layers, harmonies and effects.

The music on the Royksopp track isn’t a typical song structure. It’s essentially a groove-led instrumental track with vocals over the top, rather than a more formal or more clear ‘verse - pre-chorus - chorus - verse - …’ structure.
That being so, it’s perhaps unsurprising that it stands alone better than music written for vocal accompaniment.

What it did inspire me to do/attempt is to switch up the key for the verse alternate/pre-chorus - e.g. the recurring section that first appears in my track at 1:08 (draft 2).

Internal key changes are another thing I need to strengthen up on - especially for the tracks containing bridges and pre-choruses.

Editing (down) isn’t a strength of mine, and I already suspect this piece could benefit from some thinning out.
What sounds rich and layered in my head - and to my ears - likely sounds cluttered to other listeners. It’s something I need to work on - to refine my composing and editing for vocal tracks, so that it works as accompaniment for vocals, yet is still distinctly my own sound.

 
The more I listen to it, the more I’m hearing things that need to be tweaked.
And I’m sure there’ll be need for plenty more once I’m at the point where vocals are going in. :slight_smile:

I appreciate the perspective on structure. I need work in that area, as it takes effort for me to even notice it, much less build around it, while modes and such come naturally.

There is little better than clever key changes to mix things up. I’ve been blown away by one in particular ever since I was an adolescent in the 80s: the bridge to the final chorus in Time by Culture Club modulates up a minor third in the smoothest way I’ve heard anywhere before or since.

Editing down is hard, and turns into a kind of OCD for me. I’d say your track could benefit from some judicious thickening, especially in the verses, but then again if I produced songs I’d be solidly in the Trevor Horn/Phil Spector school of “more is more”, surprise surprise.

1 Like

Track is now at public demo stage.
Closing this thread.

Thanks for the input.
Genuinely helpful and appreciated.