Writing Challenge -- First Dance Track

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KBSoundSmith
KVRian
835 posts since 6 Jul, 2009

Post Mon Apr 27, 2020 5:36 pm

FIRST TRACK

Hey all, I normally don't post, but I thought it might be fun to show my first ever attempt at dance music :party: . I've never really composed/mixed with drums (or anything remotely commercial sounding) despite some sound design using them, so I thought it would be a fun project. I'll say more about my writing challenge, but the track link first:

https://soundcloud.com/kbsoundsmith/i-s ... t-a-moment

The writing challenge is pretty much about getting myself to compose daily again (fell away from it, for reasons). So one track per week, then increasing up to three tracks per week as I regain facility. Once a week is up, the track(s) is(are) finished, regardless of their state of completion (both creative and technical).

BTW, one week may sound like a lot of time, but I'm pretty rusty and I'm learning unfamiliar styles/techniques, so this proved more work already than I initially imagined.

Anyway, enjoy! Feedback welcome.
Last edited by KBSoundSmith on Tue May 12, 2020 9:40 am, edited 5 times in total.

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wagtunes
KVRAF
19077 posts since 8 Oct, 2014

Re: Writing Challenge -- First Dance Track(s)

Post Mon Apr 27, 2020 6:06 pm

Main problem off the bat is that the intro is too long. There should have already been some variation by the 17 second mark. The same beat went on way too long.

Then when something finally does come in, it goes on too long without variation.

For a piece to be interesting, there has to be some movement and it can't take forever for that movement to come along.

Mix wise, this actually isn't bad. Believe me, I've heard much worse. The vocal is a little muddy and can use some EQ to bring it out more. Not getting all the lyrics.

All in all, this isn't terrible but it's too minimal and repetitive for my tastes. Some kind of melody line would have helped a lot.

Having said all that, I am by no means an expert in this genre. I know a lot of minimal techno is just that, minimal. Hardly has anything going on and, quite honestly, I don't get it at all. To me it's just a boring beat. This track is way more than that, even though it takes too long to get going and is too repetitious. But like I said, I've heard worse.

On a scale of 1-10, I give it a 6.

KBSoundSmith
KVRian
835 posts since 6 Jul, 2009

Re: Writing Challenge -- First Dance Track(s)

Post Tue Apr 28, 2020 5:58 am

Hey wagtunes, thanks for the feedback, appreciate it. +1 Karma for getting to other people's tracks, btw, I noticed you post on a lot of the threads when I was browsing last night.

I agree with a lot of your criticism, particularly about length and lack of variation. This was done knowingly (to an extent), since I was mirroring a reference track -- if it had 32 bars of introduction, then so did I. Here's the reference, btw: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hs02v1kkoTE

My understanding is that the long intros/outros aren't heard by an audience/dancers when played. The extra length is there for the DJ, to give them time to make sure the previous/next track is synced up before fading in/out into the next track. (someone knowledgeable in these genres can confirm?)

But I may have overdone the lack of variation. I was trying to avoid it being like traditional songs, which by and large are goal-driven music -- they have a definite climactic point, defined beginnings and endings, very much like a story. From reading various things, dance music (especially the older/original genres) is more about state of being, not goal-driven structure. I agree that this type of music isn't easily listened to -- it seems more to be heard and felt. Not sure what the right balance is.

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wagtunes
KVRAF
19077 posts since 8 Oct, 2014

Re: Writing Challenge -- First Dance Track(s)

Post Tue Apr 28, 2020 6:37 am

KBSoundSmith wrote:
Tue Apr 28, 2020 5:58 am
Hey wagtunes, thanks for the feedback, appreciate it. +1 Karma for getting to other people's tracks, btw, I noticed you post on a lot of the threads when I was browsing last night.

I agree with a lot of your criticism, particularly about length and lack of variation. This was done knowingly (to an extent), since I was mirroring a reference track -- if it had 32 bars of introduction, then so did I. Here's the reference, btw: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hs02v1kkoTE

My understanding is that the long intros/outros aren't heard by an audience/dancers when played. The extra length is there for the DJ, to give them time to make sure the previous/next track is synced up before fading in/out into the next track. (someone knowledgeable in these genres can confirm?)

But I may have overdone the lack of variation. I was trying to avoid it being like traditional songs, which by and large are goal-driven music -- they have a definite climactic point, defined beginnings and endings, very much like a story. From reading various things, dance music (especially the older/original genres) is more about state of being, not goal-driven structure. I agree that this type of music isn't easily listened to -- it seems more to be heard and felt. Not sure what the right balance is.
Well, like I said (or maybe I didn't say) I'm no expert in this genre so my opinion is pretty much meaningless. Maybe others who are more in tune with this genre will stop by and offer some helpful critique.

Spring Goose
KVRian
587 posts since 31 Jan, 2020

Re: Writing Challenge -- First Dance Track(s)

Post Mon May 04, 2020 1:28 pm

KBSoundSmith wrote:
Tue Apr 28, 2020 5:58 am
My understanding is that the long intros/outros aren't heard by an audience/dancers when played. The extra length is there for the DJ, to give them time to make sure the previous/next track is synced up before fading in/out into the next track.
Yes that's right, but i've been thinking about whether to not bother with the DJ intros/outros because my tracks aren't played at a club.
KBSoundSmith wrote:
Tue Apr 28, 2020 5:58 am
they have a definite climactic point, defined beginnings and endings, very much like a story
You get this in dance music too. I don't have my cds to hand to give you any good examples, sorry. This is the best example i can give you:
https://youtu.be/_UIJaOMLXis
I don't know what you've been reading but that might be true too. I've been big into dance music for 25 years.

Spring Goose
KVRian
587 posts since 31 Jan, 2020

Re: Writing Challenge -- First Dance Track(s)

Post Mon May 04, 2020 1:30 pm

I hope you can see/understand my point, from the video i posted. If not then hopefully i'll be able to give you better examples before very long.

Spring Goose
KVRian
587 posts since 31 Jan, 2020

Re: Writing Challenge -- First Dance Track(s)

Post Wed May 06, 2020 2:34 pm

KBSoundSmith wrote:
Tue Apr 28, 2020 5:58 am
a definite climactic point, defined beginnings and endings, very much like a story.
Here's another

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FpzPbYFWCjg

KBSoundSmith
KVRian
835 posts since 6 Jul, 2009

Re: Writing Challenge -- First Dance Track(s)

Post Wed May 06, 2020 3:35 pm

Spring Goose wrote:
Mon May 04, 2020 1:30 pm
I hope you can see/understand my point, from the video i posted. If not then hopefully i'll be able to give you better examples before very long.
Hey, thanks for posting. I'll be sure to check the links.

Just to clarify, I'm talking mostly about the relative emphasis of climax, not necessarily the total absence of it. From the tracks of been listening to, it also seems quite dependent upon the dance genre as well. Some seem to drift, others attempt a more song-like structure.

KBSoundSmith
KVRian
835 posts since 6 Jul, 2009

Re: Writing Challenge -- First Dance Track(s)

Post Mon May 11, 2020 4:42 pm

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