tasteful embellishment of piano echoes – not the focus, just a pad, perhaps even right on the edge of being noticed but only if people listen closely.
how to make: 2 for each chord - high chord + octave strike and hold echo and use middle part. preferably down, not up (not backwards, so fading not rising).
Could also add reverb, EQ, etc. to these sounds like AK. It can be heavier effect because the sound will be lighter.
Have a looping main section that is most likely close to straight acoustic piano. That can be arrhythmic and it should also be slow. It should spend a good deal of time on each chord, and should have no more than three chords.
Why so much time on each chord? To give time for the textures around it to develop. If it’s going back and forth every couple of seconds, then there’s no time to develop. Also, since it’s arrhythmic, I’ll be going in after in Ableton and lining up the textures with their proper parts in the track, so they can come in right at the chord change (like Jon Hopkins - drifting down)
Can the main piano track have multiple sections? It would be fine from the arrhythmic side of things, but I think it would be better to simply have those human and arhythh. differences because I don’t really want a beginning, middle, and end feel. How can there be a beginning, middle, and end to love? Or to the Spirit? It’s more like a you get to listen for a couple minutes to a song that started before you were born and will still be going on after you’re dead.
What about the multiple tracks then? Should they all be in the same key? That could be good for continuity (and also so you only have to record echoes for a few chords or whatever else you do to get the textures). Perhaps even textures can be used on multiple tracks but changed in some way? I like that idea a lot. It makes sense as a concept and in practice it will be much easier.
But how to deal with one track changing to another? In the past I’ve just faded it out and then started the next one. This would really make sense as an album to worry more about the spaces in between tracks and weave them together. Could have long transitions between each and just separate the track at the midpoint of that even though that’s kind of arbitrary because it’s hard to say where love end and joy begins. I like the idea of it being smooth transitions.
Other idea is to have it end abruptly, and separate each track with a few seconds of silence. Whatever I do, I think fading out and in every time is not what I want to do. Maybe for the very beginning and end of the album, but not every track. Another thing I could do is have the textures be what unites the tracks, which would makes sense if I am doing them all in the same key. The main part ends, and the ambient texture remains over the track to track crossing point, and then the next main part starts. I like that.
Ok so what are all of the parts: main, which I already talked about. Maybe also have a processed copy of main (up or down an octave, or both) as a texture. But then the chords wouldn’t match up. Maybe a copy of main that isn’t pitch shifted so the pitches will line up perfectly but is processed in another way. Probably in max. I like the idea of processing it so it sounds pretty different but not having it all the time. It fades in and out randomly. This goes back to that idea I have a of a destructive or subtractive type of processing that makes something sound eroded or not all there, like there are certain frequency bands missing, or maybe side-chained and have it’s amplitude controlled by a recording of wind in the trees or rain or something like that. That’s probably a combo of max and ableton, because max could be really good for unique processing and Ableton would make doing a send to add reverb, compression, etc easy.
So thats main, main processed 1, and maybe main processed 3. Others: there should be recording of echoes for each chord (like Turnagain) to make a pad. Also have the octaves of each note in the chord recorded so you can make a texture that can be going the whole time by choosing only the notes that are in both chords (or would sound alright with either chord. Scale is actually better to look at). Those chord pads are the ones that will be be timed and lined up in Ableton to come in at the right time. And the other one will be randomly going the whole time, or you can do like you did in Turnagain where you recorded 5 or so minutes of it going and just used that recording, so you’re not generating it new every time, but you could because you have it separated out.
Last thing is maybe another processed part that is chord specific but doesn’t come right at the chord change but is set up to come in and out randomly when the track is on that chord (or in that chord “state” if you want to think about it that way, so there would only be 2, maybe 3 states, and you have active for each.
Maybe could record some voice and process that and use it as a pad too.
So if I use all of them, all the voices will be: main, main processed 1, main processed 2, chord A timed pad, chord B timed pad, chord C timed pad, chord A random pad, chord B random pad, chord C random pad, voice?