Old 01-30-2019, 01:54 PM   #1
pandabot
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Default is this it (reaper projects and midi)

is this it
composer: julian casablancas

1. is this it
2. the modern age
3. soma
4. barely legal
5. someday
6. alone together
7. last nite
8. hard to explain
9. new york city cops
10. trying your luck
11. take it or leave it
12. when it started

reaper projects
midi

Hopefully this will help beginning musicians learn how to compose rock songs, by being able to see how good songs are put together.

Special thanks to Jorge Orellana, Will Deoliveira and all the people making drum covers on youtube.
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Old 01-30-2019, 07:24 PM   #2
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Hey pandabot - stupid comment of mine regarding theme,I completely misunderstood what was going on there.
Hope you are still working on your Dark Terminal.Theme creators are looking a bit thin on the ground these days.
*reply unnecessary
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Old 01-30-2019, 10:18 PM   #3
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Oh I'm not a theme creator, just couldn't stand any of the existing themes so learned how to make my own. Now I'm just using it, haven't made any changes and probably will never look at another line of WALTER code for the rest of my life
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Old 06-18-2019, 06:09 PM   #4
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some insights into its production

https://imgur.com/a/cCB5Cfv
https://imgur.com/a/SiehPq6
https://imgur.com/a/U964Iqi
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Old 07-30-2019, 12:52 AM   #5
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Did some loudness analysis to better understand song dynamics, y-axis is LUFS
Attached Files
File Type: pdf strokesLoudnessAnalysis.pdf (26.7 KB, 18 views)
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Old 08-05-2019, 11:30 AM   #6
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this is really excellent work.

which vst is recommended, to make it sound better? the apple builtin generators sound, you know, very basic.

what is the 'reference' track used for? (edit, i guess that's where the original audio track went, but personally i'd prefer if reference to the media file were left in, maybe also incude a screenshot of the profject to the project folder as visual reference, then in the zip just dont include the media file obviously... so anyone with a legit rip could drop the track in)

was the entire original album recorded to a click? do they play live to a click? It would be really quite good to be able to line up an audio file or youtube media file as a track in the project. For convenience without having to rip from the CD, use a youtube downloader on watch?v=RHrGj1IyE0Y and drop it into the project, then align the beats. I did this, and it worked, nudge the track into correct beat alignment and the entire song aligns perfectly. so I guess they used a click very strictly for at least this 1 song. how about live? (**)

doing this would also allow matching the midi instrument panning to the album track whereas in this project as given, the band's panning is not simulated.

(**) edit - i partially answered my own question, drop this live video into the project, youtu.be/4W_SeKd8Z4c and adjust playback rate to 1.043626 then it aligns thru to the interlude and only deviates at the final chorus. using a little bit of stretch marking and all sections of the live performance would align perfectly to the midi.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pandabot View Post
learn how to compose rock songs, by being able to see how good songs are put together.
i suppose the 'good songs' part of that sentence can be passed by... ahem

however these are pop songs, are they not. unless someone wants to comment on why they would be considered rock songs using specific criteria. for example, 'ideal' rock songs are not quantized to a click, they must have 'the groove' within the rhythm section which is what defines rock.

Last edited by superblonde.org; 08-05-2019 at 12:18 PM.
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Old 08-05-2019, 12:13 PM   #7
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Ok since I have both audio tracks (album track and live performance track) beat aligned in copy of this project, I was focusing on comparing the 2nd verse part of the bass where bass is particularly active and the transcription has tiny errors in the nuances of what's actually being played. it's probably 95% there but the remaining percent is what makes the track sound 'cool'. its what adds the syncopation-feel to the original track. so I would suggest improving that area a bit.

interestingly (of course usual, truly sad for bassists everywhere) is that the live performance has no audible bass in the mix. which is really unfortunate because the bass walk in those measures is basically (ok, imho) the only interesting part of the entire song.
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Old 08-05-2019, 12:26 PM   #8
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Unfortunately the plugins used are Mac only. No sound from the projects in Windows.
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Old 08-05-2019, 12:44 PM   #9
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well then, edit the fx on each track to reassign to an available audio generator. if none available, then buy one.

speaking of which, adding 'text notes' into each song would be a good idea. instructions for how to use, etc. i havent used reaper's text notes myself but it could be good use of the feature.
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Old 08-05-2019, 01:00 PM   #10
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all my comments (& prior comments) are related to the single title track "is this it" -

if the stock "ReaVerbate" + default setting of "sink - dark corridor" is added to the tele track after the midi generator then the majority of the guitar tone/effect is added, in comparison to both studio track and live performance track (note- using the default Au generator). very good simulation, using just one default plugin's default setting.

of course the required step is to adjust levels of all instruments too.
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Old 08-05-2019, 01:21 PM   #11
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ok anyways regarding levels, using this media as reference: youtube Is This It-RHrGj1IyE0Y.mp4 (Audio: 44100hz, 32bps, 2ch, mp4a, however youtube might differ from the CD a little bit)

my matched levels are (using verse 2 as the section to compare)

vocal -8 dB (this will really depend on the dynamics of the generator tho)
bass -4 dB
drums -6 dB
strat -7 dB
tele -7 dB



I think the levels are interesting to investigate for two reasons,
1. vocals are down, compared to advice of of my local award winning audio engineer guy who strictly advised me to always boost vocals hotter than this track does. his opinion, "because blah blah thats what people want blah blah"

2. bass is the primary instrument in this track (second in place with melody only to the vocal itself) - it is also the hottest level - so the boosted level might seem obvious, tho usually I struggle to balance the bass instrument in a mix with what sounds to be a "proper level".

Last edited by superblonde.org; 08-05-2019 at 03:31 PM.
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Old 08-05-2019, 03:45 PM   #12
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heres an example of how the transcription could (should) be improved.
this is the vocal of second half of verse 2. around the lyric "realize"


its important because it is what makes a musician sound pro vs. amateur. look for places where the transcription should be using dotted notes instead of straight 1/8ths. change the grid to 1/16ths.

also, the midi vocal track is missing the very last note heard in the CD track (youtube track anyways), "tired". Why's that?

Last edited by superblonde.org; 08-06-2019 at 02:36 PM. Reason: remove image
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Old 08-05-2019, 08:05 PM   #13
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You're welcome to play with it and make improvements.

I used the default Apple MIDI soundbank and converted the drums to General MIDI so it would be as portable as possible. If you're on Mac it should play without requiring any third party vsts, otherwise just pick a vst.

Quote:
Originally Posted by superblonde.org View Post
Ok since I have both audio tracks (album track and live performance track) beat aligned in copy of this project, I was focusing on comparing the 2nd verse part of the bass where bass is particularly active and the transcription has tiny errors in the nuances of what's actually being played. it's probably 95% there but the remaining percent is what makes the track sound 'cool'. its what adds the syncopation-feel to the original track. so I would suggest improving that area a bit.
The point of this is to show how basic motifs can form a larger whole, it's a pretty good representation of the song arrangement so you can see how everything is put together. It's not meant to be an exact replica of the studio recording performance with all its timing nuances and groove relationships between the instrument voices.

Quote:
Originally Posted by superblonde.org View Post
its important because it is what makes a musician sound pro vs. amateur. look for places where the transcription should be using dotted notes instead of straight 1/8ths. change the grid to 1/16ths.
Why not 1/256ths? You'll find that once you start fixating on the performance instead of the arrangement then these reaper projects cease to be a useful learning abstraction. In most song sections 1/8th notes was the appropriate resolution for capturing the motif, however I also used 1/16th notes when it was appropriate.

Quote:
Originally Posted by superblonde.org View Post
i suppose the 'good songs' part of that sentence can be passed by... ahem
If you don't think the songs are good then it doesn't make much sense to spend your time analyzing them. Find songs you like

Last edited by pandabot; 08-05-2019 at 09:27 PM.
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