Space X - a psytrance experiment

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Benedict
KVRAF
3137 posts since 5 Mar, 2004 from Gold Coast Australia

Post Sun Aug 18, 2019 9:49 pm

Sometimes it is good to try stepping outside your "genre" and trying to see what makes a style you aren't big in work. A friend was asking me to make one of my videos on psytrance, how it is made, shy it works etc. It is funny style in that there is little to it, but it is also almost immediately effective (when well done) as it makes you want to take your clothes off, get covered in dirt and disappear into a dancing daze.

I'm sure I didn't really capture any of that here (and being KVR many will love to make me feel bad about that) but it was amusing to try a very different platform for a track.

https://soundcloud.com/benedictroff-marsh/space-x

:-)

recursive one
KVRAF
4317 posts since 7 Feb, 2013

Re: Space X - a psytrance experiment

Post Tue Aug 20, 2019 12:04 am

Interesting track. If I had discovered it in the wild I wouldn't have called it "psytrance" though. It sounds more like some kind of synthpop/synthwave with some deliberate melodic weirdness.

First, I think psytrance doesn't go well with major keys. If you want it melodic, Phrygian mode or natural minor work better.

Second, what defines psytrance is lots of SFX-type sounds, they may be completely atonal but may be played in a rhythmical manner with filter automation, pitch modulation and such, sort of "melody without a melody" This can be used to augment the melodies or often completely replaces the melodic content.

And the most improtant thing is the bassline. In modern psytrance you need a very consistent kbbb groove with dead-accurate retrigger on the bass notes. It's an art in itself, I'd suggest you these tutorials (I wish I had discovered them myself much earlier)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UcMoh1T7_Ak
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FSzP2_AO0DQ

Hope this helps :)
You may think you can fly ... but you better not try

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Benedict
KVRAF
3137 posts since 5 Mar, 2004 from Gold Coast Australia

Re: Space X - a psytrance experiment

Post Tue Aug 20, 2019 6:46 pm

Thanks but I have no actual interest in making psy. I thought I made that clear in the OP. For me, the style is far too rigid to let me express any of what I want/need to say/do. But there are some very interesting aspects.

I did use a tut to understand the timings of the bassline and some live events to see the form overall so I could help my friend understand the why of a few things.

We were done so I finished piece deliberately more in my common style of being pure Electronic Music, in this case with some of the formulas of psy - which incidentally were not too far away from Hi-NHG and EBM from the mid '80s.

:-)

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wagtunes
KVRAF
17670 posts since 8 Oct, 2014

Re: Space X - a psytrance experiment

Post Tue Aug 20, 2019 7:08 pm

I listened to this without reading the description because I didn't want to be influenced by labels.

All I know is I liked it for whatever it is.

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Benedict
KVRAF
3137 posts since 5 Mar, 2004 from Gold Coast Australia

Re: Space X - a psytrance experiment

Post Tue Aug 20, 2019 10:48 pm

Thanks Wags. Ultimately, as a track on an album, that is all I care about. All this nitpicking about what can and can't be allowed in a genre is not good for anyone.

:-)

recursive one
KVRAF
4317 posts since 7 Feb, 2013

Re: Space X - a psytrance experiment

Post Wed Aug 21, 2019 1:58 am

Benedict wrote:
Tue Aug 20, 2019 10:48 pm
All this nitpicking about what can and can't be allowed in a genre is not good for anyone.
Good point, I totally agree :tu:
Benedict wrote:
Tue Aug 20, 2019 6:46 pm
Thanks but I have no actual interest in making psy. I thought I made that clear in the OP. For me, the style is far too rigid to let me express any of what I want/need to say/do.
TBH I indeed undertstood it that you had attempted to make a psytrance track. If it was actually meant to be a track in whatever genre having some psytrance elements/influences, then most of what I have said is not relevant at all. Being a long-time psytrance listener I probably pay too much attention to some "formal" genre criteria.

Anyway, the track is somehow outside of my listening habits but sounds interesting.
You may think you can fly ... but you better not try

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Benedict
KVRAF
3137 posts since 5 Mar, 2004 from Gold Coast Australia

Re: Space X - a psytrance experiment

Post Wed Aug 21, 2019 2:12 pm

recursive one wrote:
Wed Aug 21, 2019 1:58 am
Anyway, the track is somehow outside of my listening habits but sounds interesting.
Thanks

I started by using a Tut just to speed the understanding of the "gallop". Once I had that feel, it struck me that whatever I put on top was not exact enough of a match so simply decided to finish it in a way that let me use it in my current project about space missions that has a very simple pure EM feel (what you probably think early 80s). This, of course, absorbs any remaining "modern" feel from the track - which suits me fine in the situation.

I am watching a tut right now on making the Kik sound and somewhat amazed at how mechanized the whole process is. It makes the accusations that Kraftwerk or Pet Shop Boys faced seem :roll:

What my friend and I worked out definitively (which I had already worked out from EDM in general and was the reason we were trained not to Solo sounds as we try to make them "perfect") that the more you have in the mix, the less power the Drum & Bass combo appear to have. This is why psy is commonly so much Kik + Bass only and they are bright. The other bits are incidental and only to allow the dancers a rest, and to emphasize the Drop (again).

My track has far too much musical activity to keep the gallop focused.

:-)

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