I'm honored to have won 1st place in the 2017 New Grounds Underdogs' Audio Competition with this track.
I was inspired by the incredible videos of hummingbirds created by Anand Varma for National Geographic.
Not only was the information fascinating (of which there is more in the linked article at the bottom of the aforementioned post) but I had an emotional reaction to the videos themselves. His images captured a world very familiar, yet when slowed down, have an otherworldly ethereal beauty.
Harmonically, everything is based on stacked 5ths. The harmony is extended in the bridge.
Most of the sounds came from the acoustic guitar (played with fingers, chopsticks, ebow, allen wrench, and slide). Other sounds for the percussion came from cardboard boxes, a wood block, and simple wave forms (mostly white noise and sine waves). There's an 808 bass drum sample as well.
The prominent melody is voiced primarily by sine waves, then doubled with glockenspiel and vibraphone. I also used a really crappy flute soundfont which was mangled, distorted, and detuned to mimic the feel of a mellotron.
The guitar glitches were painstakingly chopped and hand placed.
The guitar was purposely tuned just a touch flat in the beginning and was distressed using a combination of distortion, eq, heavy compression, and a vinyl plugin. Background noise and tape hiss is purposeful and in some places, added artificially using a combination of pink noise and samples from various fans (air conditioner, kitchen vent, bathroom vent, computer). In general, quirks like hisses pops and subtly (and at times not so subtly) drifting pitch are the name of the game.
I encourage you to listen to this track while scrolling through the videos linked above.
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