Desolate - Original Composition

This is from several months ago, as I was getting back into the swing of things and writing. This is just the midi/guitar pro composition- I have an older draft recorded but not terribly happy with it.

Curious what others think of the song structure, feedback welcome, it’s kind of more on the experimental side for me. I had a somewhat narrative concept in mind, curious what it conveys to others. I was listening to a lot of Ihsahn and Leprous at this point. Maybe I’ll need to translate it to virtual instruments or full recording for better feedback, but this is what I got for now.


I listened to the entire thing, which I didn’t expect to do. It was really engaging. I can’t critique it because I’d only say the things that I’d do to it, which are invalid. I like this piece, man

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Thanks man! It was one where I remember playing with some unusual chords mixed in to the composition, I think in particular the Prometheus chord

If you’re interested, there’s sort of a sister song named ‘Dimensional’ which is a even more Ihsahn influenced and gets a bit more into transitions and breaks that use the Prometheus chord/scale. I felt a bit more confident about that one for whatever reason, actually most proud of the ending segment that’s a sort of polyphonic nylon sound

I want to back off some of the tremolo parts but overall I’m happy with it.

Main reason for getting feedback on these two in particular is I have 4-5 others that I think are all nice distinct pieces, but more accessible and I want to arrange them all for a solo album in the near future. So including this pair rounds out a pretty good length solo EP if I can decide how I want to arrange them all.

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I’m telling’ ya, you should look into game scoring.

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I tried to go to school for scoring years ago, would love to get into that. Closest thing I have now is a buddy who has (slowly) been making indie sci fi/comedy B-movies over the years.

But, I haven’t worked on trying to make connections, I imagine if really put in the footwork (or keyboard work) and find people making games and films and just offer to score some stuff, maybe I could find something. I know people who can master/mix and possibly would also be interested in scoring themselves.

Seems like a numbers game, keep the output up and eventually you’ll probably get an opportunity.

You said the magic words to summon me – “Ihsahn” and “Leprous!” :laughing:

But in all seriousness, there are some great ideas in here, good stuff! I’d love to hear the two pieces in this thread recorded.

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Almost everything is connections and numbers, but that said you do seem to have a good skill at it and especially being able to commit it to paper.

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I could seek out smaller indie game developers and write music for them, they usually don’t have crazy connections either.

It would be easier if I still lived out in Seattle, tons of designers and devs with side project games and PAX is out there.

My plan is still to release solo stuff, maybe see write some guest stuff with a few regional bands I know, and work on YouTube/ Instagram material. Been discussing/writing for some projects with folks around here, but I’ve been mostly focused on building/rebuilding my skills up for the last year, in guitar/writing/recording. My worst case scenario I’m still making music I like, and that’s most of why I’m doing it anyway.

Both are really nice; unfortunately, I can’t provide any feedback beyond “me like”, but for what it is worth, I did very much enjoy them.

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This is killer! I’ve got zero feedback… but it pulled me in to listen from start to finish. I look forward to hearing the end product

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This is a good book on the subject:

What I like is that you develop each idea before it goes stale, though with enough continuity that it doesn’t just feel like ideas strung one after the other


One note on that, maybe it’ll be helpful to other - I usually start with one or two themes, and work out variations on them, and conciously think about connecting parts. The themes usually just come to me on some level, from playing around with a chord progression or just playing on guitar, but the problem solving part is experimenting with different transition sections.

A lot of times I’ll have a piece that kind of flows alright, but I go in and rearrange it because I realize one part ties in better somewhere else. In this one in particular, at 1m 18 seconds in the original piece I had a much more jarring transition and no solo section (fair warning - not a great recording and my playing was a lot sloppier than it is now):

I thought about that one for a while before deciding on how I could fix that section, because I really dislike the transitions in that portion. What happens a lot also is I’ll write a few pieces as separate items and cannibalize them all into one because they tend to be close enough in theme (just kinda reflects my mood I guess) so one will have a part that makes more sense in another or provides a good transition.

I always will stop writing a piece and start a new one if I think I’ve come up with a theme that’s good but distinct from what I’m working on, and start a new piece with it. What often happens is the subsequent piece is better and I’m able to take portions of the other one for transitions or sections etc.