I felt the need for distraction so have unearthed this old song and done some kooky things to it…
Would appreciate some fresh ears. I am aiming for a vision of housewife-lamentia haha… where musical sounds and domestic appliances merge… but. I just couldn’t find a suitable reference track…
It has languished in my parking zone for years and years and I’d like to ‘finish it’…
I felt the need for distraction so have unearthed this old song and done some kooky things to it…
Wow - Pretty spectacular! Totally unhinged and raw. It kind of sounds a little Tom Waits-ian in it’s rawness and gloomy clunkiness. It has a great dark, dour and desperate humor about it. I love the sounds you’ve used. It’s a real departure for you from the piano, but it really works so well in creating atmosphere.
About the only thing I noticed on a technical level was that the vocals start to jump out just a tiny bit too much toward the very end of the song from around 2:28.
Yay!! Thanks heaps Andrew! Yeah there are surges all through and my ears were numb so wonderful to get your feedback. Will tame those last vox for sure. I had wanted a sort of orchestrated cacophony… this is an odd wee song I used to pop into my live shows as a surprise between more intense songs… I just enjoyed some sonic exploration… I dread to think how many hours it took me to select the soundscape and fx… ridiculous really, sometimes I am such a sonic nerd! But yay, nearly finished I think…
Nice description - I may steal that one!
You don’t call this intense?!?
Ah… but it’s all worth it in the end!
But well worth it for us who are tired of the endless repetitions of ‘popular’ music. Always a joy to hear something new and different but still accessible and enjoyable. They call it musique concrete or found sounds I think? Regardless it is a fine art in your hands (probably dangerous for others to attempt!) Thanks for posting and please continue.
Hi Emma, congrats for coming up with something so different yet enjoyable to listen to! Not an easy result to achieve, really.
I especially enjoyed the vocals in this. The domestic noise arrangements are perfect and easy to listen to, and I’m sure that must have been a hell of a headache to put together.
Two small things I would have done differently are:
- tame the domestic noises in a couple places so that the vocals always stay on top
- use something else than the fake choir at the end (multiple instances of your own voice or, even better, kids voices)
Great job, awesome creativity!
Incidentally, my old friend Sebastien Tellier is releasing an album in a few days on this exact same topic.
Thanks so much for your kind words Ingo… I love using a combination of found sounds, based on my innate premise that there is music in everything. It can be so very tricky to join the two sometimes. It often feels like a form of self indulgence so it is lovely to have positive feedback.
Thanks so much for your positive words, very helpful. I enjoyed listening to your friend’s sounds, what fabulous vocal effects!
I will go back and just check the peaks again but I’m anxious to keep a roughness to the mix… a sense of cacophony and unpredictability… calculated chaos? With the choir, I do hear what you are saying there… usually I would never ever use such a cheesy sound, I am a self-made backing vocals fiend… but there was a backstory to this. When I used to perform this song live, I used the choir sound on my digital piano and it was so long ago, that people were quite startled and actually looked around for the voices. I have a sense of nostalgia for that moment… It is like ‘deliberate cheese’…
I tried SO many sounds and choirs… I tried rap and evil distortions
It has ended up very different to how it started, just voice and piano but I was following the annoying path that I so often travel where I don’t know what I want until I hear it! Thanks again!
Emma always a joy. I love the way that you have made household sounds into drums. I think I would have been tempted to take your first few beats around 11 sec and turned it into a continuous beat but I think that would have been an error. Your sound crafting has come so far and these just feel so right. Excellent job and an intriguing song to boot.
Thanks so much Eric!! Yeah I really liked that beginning rhythmy bit and did play with repeating it but it sounded too ‘contrived’… so lovely to get your feedback ta. I spent so very long tweaking, I had pretty well lost all sense of perspective (if there can be such a thing in such a song!! )
I did use superior drummer a bit and then added extra cowbell, quite a lot of midi that I tried to blend with the recorded live sounds… Much of it has all been altered beyond recognition. he he… I had got into a place where my sound was boring me to bits so I needed a change!
Signature you. congrats
Long time no speak! I haven’t looked at any comments yet. I love that opening set of notes on the bass. SOOOOooooo refreshing to hear a different feel and combination! What did you do processing wise with the pots and pans or whatever you used. They are really musical and more importantly, even. They never jump out, they don’t sound harsh and fit the song.
Now, you know we all love your voice and ability, but I’d pay good money to hear Tom Waits cover this and I reckon it would slot perfectly into his repertoire!
Good stuff, loved it!
I would of replied sooner, but for some reason I felt this compulsion to do my dishes. The first thing that I noticed was how envious I was of your beautiful voice, it’s got such great tone and you have great control of it. My second thought was that it reminds me of something from a musical. I did read some of the other comments on the “jumping out” and “not jumping out’ of the sounds and those comments reminded me of a book I got for Christmas titled “This is your brain on music” by Daniel J. Levitin. In the book he talks about how the brain looks and anticipates where something is going. I think that his what I was experiencing, I was trying to see where the song was going, what it meant, and what genre was this? Had I been listening to the radio and this song just came on, I would perhaps not been so wanting to know and would of probably just thought it was from a musical of some sort. I would of wondered what musical it was and how it fit into the whole. But being on “bash this”, I find I am higher tuned to notice everything, almost at if bash is a game show and your job is to find something that needs a tweaking. So the” jumping out" or “is just fine” I think all depends on what is this trying to be, if anything. I think it was very cool just as it is, but I could also see where you could shape it into another direction.
Hey Dan, how’s it going? Great to hear from you and thanks for checking out my sounds…
I had some fun with this track. I used quite a combination of things… the recorded washing machine and taps mixed up with some tweaked cowbell but the pots and pans are largely thanks to superior drummer’s Twisted Kit Ezx with endless faffing about… rather than a groove, it is simply tied in to the keyboard for timing. I wanted that sense of rushing around bashing things for a musical moment in the life of a manic housewife haha… for such a simple song, I just looked and there are still 16 tracks! o, 3 synth things in there too… I get a sound in my head that I just try to ‘find’ and sometimes it seems to take forever.
And yeah, I’ve always been a great fan of Tom.
Hope the lockdown is treating you okay… we are just coming out of it over here, fingers tightly crossed.
Hiya, thanks heaps for your feedback - great stuff!
And special thanks for the nice stuff about the vocals… yay! And I can understand your confusion re genre… I have worked in mainstream stuff for many years… wriggled within the constraints of definitions and now I simply chuckle and create in a self indulgent splendour! Others have commented that my stuff sounds like something from a musical… I guess it’s coz I am loving playing with the theatrics of music sometimes… the setting a scene and making my own rules. Having said that, it is still very relevant to me how the sounds come across to others… are they accessible? do they connect/annoy/repel or whatever.
I love the creative process of music… but it takes me an absurdly long time to make my musical bits and pieces. I obsess over tiny details and still manage to do the dumbest things. So being able to get feedback here is invaluable.
It is beautiful all along Emma. Only feedback is that the accordion / harmonica could be pushed back just a bit, behind your voice instead of fighting with it. Probably a bit of low pass on both should do the trick.
Thanks Michelle, great feedback… I had become so anaesthetised by the cacophony I didn’t check the interaction between these two… will have a listen later in the week when I can hopefully squeeze some time in my studio. The accordion was a late cheesy addition…
It sounds really nice. I like the concept and the percussion was amazing as well as your voice. I don’t really have much to bash. The bass seemed a little loud at some points, but everything else was great.
I think I took a month off, @Emma, but all of a sudden there are all these new songs in BTR, including this sleeper from you! How fun a song, lyrics rising to the level of your performance. And what effective use of actual sounds to transform the lovely music to something quite surprising and enjoyable.
I’m afraid I was enjoying it too much to find any aspects to criticize, so please count on others for that.
Not an ensemble of instruments to use often, maybe never again. But I can respect that creativity, and I wouldn’t be all that shocked to hear you do another one in a similar spirit one day.
Just to add a comment (days after everyone), aside your own signature sound you handle nicely for so long, and it sounds beautiful I think, the song is really a story (what a song should be IMO) and you’re always creative about telling storiers (Da Moomoo song is unforgettable to me).
Plus, on a production side, you’re very spot on: you didn’t use the same structure song after song, each song has some distinctive elements, you add layers of stuff to enhance to song and not because you can, you use your voice in different manners and you add some details keeping the song interesting.
Thanks for sharing all of these.