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music

I worked on this a couple of months ago – I am a bit behind on keeping things up to date due to various significant personal things going on (getting married being one of them woop woop!) so just putting it up:

Derek Best of Nickelodeon fame asked me to produce a bit of music and sound design for a Nick Toons advert – we tried a couple of different options but the vibes of my dubstep versions were a bit too heavy so Derek found this lovely bit of Ballet by Delibes (Coppelia) and instructed me to mash it up a bit.

I started by chopping up the track into individual notes in my sampler, then constrained it to tempo, chopped it up more, programmed a load of drums, did a tempo ramp for the finale, added more drums, and boom: classical music for the kids with a bunch of childishly wonderful farts, burps, zaps and swooshes added for good measure.  Enjoy!

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Carling are using a piece of my music on their new ‘Trick Shot’ Campaign.  Thanks Eclectic Music for putting it forward!  It was mixed and finished off at the lovely Factory Studios by Anthony and is on air as we speak – have a look:

I wrote some music and did the sound design and mix for a couple of films for Nick Junior recently, and having just filled up a skiff with modular synth stuff I tried to jam as much analogue synth noise into the music as possible.  Here’s my synth setup for any geeks who care:

modularAnyone who knows me personally knows I have a bit of a synth addiction… some like their cars, well… synths are much better and they don’t depreciate.

I should cut to the chase, this film is written and directed by the most awesome Kim Majkut and Akin Akinsiku at Nickelodeon UK, and the lovely animation is by Pierre+Bertrand from Not To Scale.  It’s a beauty so have a look:

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I spent some time this summer working on a film for Brother Printers with Chris Cairns, Neil Mendoza, Marek Bereza to name a few, and at last it is out!

Firstly, all the sound in the film is real, nothing is faked, re-pitched or re-timed in post production.  Ok there are a couple of fake bits, one being the deep pulsing hum at the very beginning, and the other being the paper feeding up in the breakdown shot.  It’s not the usual focused, foleyed and tweaked sound that I get involved in, in fact it’s completely the opposite to my normal processes – everything was captured at source and only re-balanced in the final mix.  The point of the film was to make a big clanging whirring mess to juxtapose the lovely Brother feller on the end – that’s what I’m saying anyway…

A quick blurb:

Neil, Marek and their soldering army took apart various machines and hooked up whatever motors and mechanisms they could to some custom circuit boards (based on arduinos).  The boards were set to receive midi (control data) which I was outputting from my laptop using Logic Pro.  I composed / arranged a version of Bob Dylan’s classic tune ‘The Times They Are A Changin’ by mapping out the various machines as an orchestra of sorts.  In the early stages of production I used the first test machines that were wired up to approximate what the final arrangement would sound like.  As I wrote the arrangement, I recorded the machines in separate passes, one by one, so that I could balance them against each other more musically.

The only day of the schedule I couldn’t work on due to other commitments, was the shoot day.  I left the set at 3 in the morning the day of the shoot, drove Chris, Marek and Neil to the local Holiday Inn near the set and waved goodbye hoping that on the day all would come good.  I was gutted not to have been able to be there on the shoot day but I had my good friend Tom Belton on hand to cover me – he is a Logic ninja so I knew it was all in safe hands.  On set my laptop was sequencing all the machines live from Logic Pro, the midi split out to each group from a Motu Midi Express 128.  Have a look at the midi sequence here:

So after the edit, I re-compiled all the recordings I had made pre-shoot in testing and from the shoot day, and did a final mix in Pro Tools at Factory Studios.  A lot of lessons learned, some late nights and some headaches but it was well worth it – thanks so much to Chris and co. for getting me involved, have a look at the final film:

I have just written a track for a great time lapse project that has been a labour of love for photographers Daniel Alexander and Patrick Dalton for many months.  The musical brief was gabba/grindcore but I figured it might be better to write something simple and relaxing to slow down the footage – I went with tape delayed pianos and washed out guitars.

The following info is ripped from their site:

1DAY6CITIES is a global photography project that took place on the 11th November 2011 – 11.11.11, in London, Dubai, Shanghai, Auckland, San Francisco and São Paulo. Using word of mouth, email and social networks we put together an international team of photographers to create a unique twenty-four hour snapshot of this day across six very different cities around the globe. At exactly 00.00 Coordinated Universal Time (world time/GMT) photographers in each of these cities captured their first image in an event that saw photographs being taken every 30 seconds for the following 24 hours. The brief was for the photographers to shoot the most interesting thing happening in their city, at the time they had chosen to shoot. The cities were chosen because they are roughly an equal time difference apart meaning the films show the sun travelling around the earth through the course of the day.

Daniel and Patrick are showing sequences of photos and also the film in various exhibitions around the world, starting with one running currently in Auckland… check the site here, particularly for the image sequences page which is awesome… and have a look at the film to hear my small contribution too:

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Akin Akinsiku, art director at Nickelodeon UK, has asked me to write three tracks to work across the rebrand of the Nick Toons channel for 2012.

There was quite a lot of variation of pace and style across the animations – I thought that three tracks wasn’t going to be enough so I ended up sending in seven demos and Akin kept them all.  They vary in pace and mood but are all kinda dubstep/breakbeats – check out this compilation.

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