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Wires first go: Strega

edited January 15 in Creations

“An evil as old as the universe haunts the world. Find the truth. Protect yourself.” - Karen Monahan Fernandes.

So, I put a typically cheery phrase - “It is the end of all things” - what I happened to be thinking, this fine Sunday morning, welcome to my head - into Textquencer, and used it to drive aPolyvoks, still one of my favourite synth apps. As soon as I hooked up Wires, randomised, natch, to it, I got instant 1970s Italian ‘giallo’ horror movie vibes - think Dario Argento, Suspiria, Goblin etc. Something about the lovely, dusty, haunted quality Wires and the vintage-aping aPolyvoks gave it, I guess.

Things just went from there, using my usual battery of randomisation techniques, a fistful of my less used apps - Rozeta Arpeggio, 8 voice Synth, Respiro, Monolit, Pipa - and live mixing from AUM straight into AudioShare. Unusually for me it has a drumbeat (Hammerhead, Fractal Beats, Drum Computer, SynthDrum kick and KQ Dixie castanets (!), a Talker vocal triggered live from Koala pads as a second pass in AUM over the now prerecorded backing, and a bit more structure than my usual Dark Ambient stuff. Oh, and it’s called Strega - - Italian for witch in this instance, rather than the identically named luvverly Make Noise device which draws inspiration from the same source name wise, and which one day Shall Surely Be Mine…

So I’m calling this one Witch House, genre-wise.

AI artwork, Dream by Wombo, text prompt ‘Strega, photorealistic, 1970s Italian Giallo film poster’.

Giallo, of course, literally means ‘yellow’ for reasons - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Giallo - so it seems the AI was going for a double whammy of metatextuality, capturing something of the artistic style of the mid 70s horror movie poster, and in an appropriate shade…

As usual, all attention, be it brick bats or bouquets, thirsted after in a frankly shaming display of neediness…

Comments

  • Bumping cause I missed this one. Very atmospheric.

  • @LinearLineman : Bless you for noticing! :) My tree fell in a forest unheard until you passed by. I have validation! Life is good :)

    Weirdly, it is often the pieces I am personally most happy with which seem to gather the least attention, this current thing a case in point. Must be that fine ear for a dance floor banger that I have… :)

  • Nice to hear your use of beats, something I also struggle to incorporate because of my intolerance of too much repetition… I need to listen to this on proper speakers or headphones though as my phone speaker isn’t doing it much justice… bumped just before it left the first page too!

  • @Svetlovska : very cool. I love the Witch-House vibe. It makes me want to explore aPolyvloks and Wires.

    p.s. (reminds me that decades ago -- back before house music was a widely familiar -- a friend of mine and I created a dark house genre: Haunted House -- largely fueled by samples recorded from a VHS of The Hunger)

  • 👁️ 👁️
    👍🏻👍🏻

  • Super cool great dusty soundtrack

  • Truly atmospheric, and very enjoyable.
    Worthy bump, indeed!!!
    Love the percussive splash on 1:16 just before "magic".
    Beautiful piece of musicscape!!!
    Rene

  • Atmospheric indeed! Nice to see Talker! being used too - although it is slightly unnerving to hear quite terrifying soundbites delivered in a public service announcement manner!

  • Thanks all for the listens and those kind comments. It really does give me a lift to know my noises have been heard.

    @espiegel123 : love the idea of ‘Haunted House’ - The Hunger was a great, stylish movie, and I seem to remember an excellent piece of sound design when the vamps unleashed their necklace razor pendants in lieu of teeth, a whiplash crack that really startled…

    @AlterEgo_UK : Yes, absolutely! The passionless delivery against the drama of the subject matter creates a jarring alienation effect I really like… It would be great to have more control over intonation, sometimes though, and who knows, AI may make that possible, eg Apple’s soft launched Kindle narrators, but for now I’ll work with the incongruity…

  • Nice to hear you doing something a bit different, but just as unsettling.

  • @Svetlovska super cool! Did you try the new Textquencer update? It shows a random quote on every new pattern, for maximizing the inspiration!

  • edited January 19

    @bygjohn : thank you! I do actually have a whole second string of pieces using Talker and beats, which I post on my SoundCloud under the rubric ‘Witch House’ instead of ‘Dark Ambient’. I think I’ve done about nine or ten now, I’m thinking of collecting and releasing them as an album called Sprechtgesang, so I can bin them off the SoundCloud to make room for new unlistenable dins. Watch this space…

    @cem_olcay : Wow! Yes, thanks! I am honoured you liked it. I literally couldn’t have made this without you. I really love Textquencer, it’s my current go-to, and has pushed your ShiftBud off the top slot in my sequencer list. And I enjoy the quotes, too - though a large part of the reason I love Textquencer so much is the way it allows me to literally encode another layer of meaning into my invariably cthonic delvings, and then surprise myself with how it sounds. I enjoy picking something in keeping with the prevailing dark ambient/witch house vibe I tend aim for, often from old HPL or his pals, or, at a push, writing something suitable myself. It is a really inspired idea, thank you! :)

  • Like Chris, I'm just listening to this on my phone speakers, but I prefer the Roses piece! Wonder what it woukd have been like with Wires on the vocals. To me it feels a bit like the vocal is too dominant and clean to suit the more filtered sound of the backing track. I think I would prefer it as an instrumental actually. Or perhaps with a real singer! I think this would be lovely with some ethereal, chanty, witchy backing vocals

  • Well reminded, when I can get back downstairs I’ll listen to this again on the speakers!

  • @Gavinski said:
    Like Chris, I'm just listening to this on my phone speakers, but I prefer the Roses piece! Wonder what it woukd have been like with Wires on the vocals. To me it feels a bit like the vocal is too dominant and clean to suit the more filtered sound of the backing track. I think I would prefer it as an instrumental actually. Or perhaps with a real singer! I think this would be lovely with some ethereal, chanty, witchy backing vocals

    Really nice on the big speakers, though I agree, the vocal would be ace buried a bit deeper... really nice take on house though!

  • @Gavinski @Krupa : thanks both for the insightful comments. I suspect you are right.

    This is the consequence of my ‘fire, forget, move on’ approach to quality control, and as someone without a sympathetic local audience to try stuff out on before pulling the trigger.

    I actually have three versions of the mix, one without vocals, one with vocals more integrated into the mix, (the anpproach I used on my other ‘sprechtgesang’ pieces), and the one I published. On the day, I thought I’d try this and see how it went. Then, a day later, playing through some stuff (I do listen to my own stuff for fun, shock horror! :) ), I heard a thing, thought ‘Oo, that’s good - what is it?’ - and then realised it was the instrumental mix of the track. Doh! Lesson learnt…

  • @Svetlovska said:
    @Gavinski @Krupa : thanks both for the insightful comments. I suspect you are right.

    This is the consequence of my ‘fire, forget, move on’ approach to quality control, and as someone without a sympathetic local audience to try stuff out on before pulling the trigger.

    I actually have three versions of the mix, one without vocals, one with vocals more integrated into the mix, (the anpproach I used on my other ‘sprechtgesang’ pieces), and the one I published. On the day, I thought I’d try this and see how it went. Then, a day later, playing through some stuff (I do listen to my own stuff for fun, shock horror! :) ), I heard a thing, thought ‘Oo, that’s good - what is it?’ - and then realised it was the instrumental mix of the track. Doh! Lesson learnt…

    Don't feel guilty! I love listening to my own stuff. This is the joy of the fast and dirty way of working - by the time you've made something you haven't been slaving over it for days or weeks to the point where you're sick of the sight (sound) of it 😂

  • edited January 23

    I really like what you are doing. Odd to say, but it in some way gives me permission (meant in the most positive sense) to go to places I have hesitated to go to. Some pieces I sampled on Soundcloud make me feel cozy and safe, as long as I don't fall asleep that is! I like all the littles sounds and textures that enter in as you move through the songs and create different feeling of places. Feels like I'm walking through them. Anyways, my first feelings on first listen. Maybe I'll make a Witch House song myself :)

  • @Gavinski said:

    @Svetlovska said:
    @Gavinski @Krupa : thanks both for the insightful comments. I suspect you are right.

    This is the consequence of my ‘fire, forget, move on’ approach to quality control, and as someone without a sympathetic local audience to try stuff out on before pulling the trigger.

    I actually have three versions of the mix, one without vocals, one with vocals more integrated into the mix, (the anpproach I used on my other ‘sprechtgesang’ pieces), and the one I published. On the day, I thought I’d try this and see how it went. Then, a day later, playing through some stuff (I do listen to my own stuff for fun, shock horror! :) ), I heard a thing, thought ‘Oo, that’s good - what is it?’ - and then realised it was the instrumental mix of the track. Doh! Lesson learnt…

    Don't feel guilty! I love listening to my own stuff. This is the joy of the fast and dirty way of working - by the time you've made something you haven't been slaving over it for days or weeks to the point where you're sick of the sight (sound) of it 😂

    I think we all do this, we're only putting out advanced sketches for the most part, and I'm as guilty as the next of recording everything wet or just firing and forgetting. It's probably the only way I can export anything while working on my own...

  • Could have sworn my feet were tapping to this at one stage… very rhythmic, very catchy.
    For somebody who claims to have no musical skills you produce surprisingly musical creations👌

  • edited January 25

    @gkillmaster : thank you for the listen, the comment, and for having such an exceptionally cool name! :) You so definitely should make your own Witch House thing, I’d love to hear it!

    Apparently, or at least according Wikipedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Witch_house_(genre), Witch House started as a joke genre that didn’t exist, but once the name got out there, it started becoming real, featuring, inter alia, horror sound effects mixed into EDM stuff.

    Unironically fulfilling the true task of any true magic, of course, which is to cause actual effects in the real world through the application of word and will…

    @GeoTony : I offer my most humble apologies. I shall return to cacophonous atonal dins imminently… ;)

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