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Recently Released Self-Produced Album


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HackAmateur
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Joined: 10 Jul 2021
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 19, 2021 7:02 pm    Post subject: Re: Recently Released Self-Produced Album Reply with quote

J.D. Heckathorn wrote:
I made a djazzy progressive metal album using trumpet as the lead instrument because I figure what’s more metal than a literal metal instrument? Maybe not for everyone, but getting it out into the wild has at least made the year COVID 1984 if even a small bit more enjoyable.

I’ve been here for awhile and I’d love the feedback of such a great community. I recorded all of the horn parts utilizing the yamaha silent brass—>headphone out—>audio interface—>Logic (effects/mixing). Thank you for listening!

https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=OLAK5uy_kIX3SaXudGyBO480qy3xizANxO4pD-occ


Well, you just proved that trumpet can, in fact, be used in metal music. The only other context I've heard trumpet in with this kind of dissonance has been Horror Film or Horror Video Game OSTs. So basically, only in horror music have I heard trumpet in such a dissonant context harmonically.

So, it kind of reminded me of horror music soundtracks to hear you playing trumpet in this kind of dissonance. Of course, metal music has more aggressive beats and percussion than most horror music on films or video games, so obviously it's a different genre.

Metal is all about taking that harmonic dissonance and putting it into a very aggressive context (musically and percussively)... especially Black Metal, which sounds like literal horror soundtrack music turned into Heavy Metal songs. lol

I agree with the user 'OldHorn' on something, though. The effects are nice, but I think you're relying on them to do a lot of heavy-lifting. Speaking of horror film and horror game OSTs, I'd recommend you analyze those to find out some very metal-sounding melodies to play. That would expand your possibilities by a long-shot with this type of stuff.

And you need more tritone leaps. You're trying to put trumpet into a Metal music context? Where are those dark melodies that really bring out the 'Locrian Mode'? Just some tips to improve, but this is a great concept. I really like it.

I, too, kind of roll my eyes at a lot of the classical trumpet conventional thinking. I'm a big fan of soundtrack music, musical theater, and commercial soloist stuff. I'm not interested in playing at Carnegie Hall, though I guess if somebody offered me that opportunity, I'd do it PURELY for the resume. LOL
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J.D. Heckathorn
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 20, 2021 5:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hey thanks for listening and for the kind words! The Silent Brass method of recording is definitely not ideal, and probably seen as blasphemous by many but I lived in a condo up until 2 months ago so it was necessary to find an alternative method to record. It’s simply using a 3mm to 1/4” out of the headphone jack into my audio interface where I can then have it go into Logic Pro x.

On magnetogravatic I didn’t use a looper, to record the odd rhythmic part I actually had the trumpet going through a distortion plugin and something went wrong, I was able to make “tones” by just pressing down the valves so to capture this I recorded it. I’ve tried to replicate it again but whatever went wrong with that plugin I couldn’t get to do again. I also recorded bass trumpet with the tenor trombone silent brass mute using the same method.

I never thought of using the SB in conjunction with a clip on mic, however I wanted as dry a sound as possible to add effects and the unit already has no “reverb off” function so anything you’re recording will at least have the reverb 1 setting. Not a bad idea. I like you’re experimenting with pedals I have not tried that with the silent brass. I’m not sure what cable you’re using but when I tried an XLR in instead of 1/2” I found more clipping issues.

urbie watrous wrote:
This is interesting stuff -- not my usual thing, but I like the way you're putting sounds together. Are you using a looper, on "Magnetogravatic?" How do you minimize the... noise from the SB? I live in an apartment where I can't make much noise, so I'm trying to find the best way to record (trombone, mostly) with a mute (without effing up my sound, chops, and all). I've tried using a little in-bell Dillon practice mute with a clip-on mic -- it's not too bad, and actually sounds remarkably close to an open horn, on a recording. But it's not ideal, so I've been trying the SB. Not too bad, but it does introduce some hiss. I really don't think it's designed to be a Serious Recording Microphone -- it's supposed to be a practice tool. I found that the output wasn't really quite high enough to do what I need, so I got a guitar headphone amp and have been using that, downstream from the SB, so I don't have to crank it all the way up just to hear it well enough. But... all this gain-staging is, for a non-engineer, a matter of trial and error, just twist the knobs until it sounds as good as it's going to sound and doesn't peak, in any of the pieces of equipment I'm using (SB --> preamp --> Eventide H9 --> RC-505 Loop Station --> Tascam DP-24). What other recording setups have you tried, besides the SB, for recording the horn?

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J.D. Heckathorn
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 20, 2021 5:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don’t mind at all, I appreciate the comments! This first album was very much an experiment and looking back I definitely agree there is a lot I can improve. If you’re talking about Magnetogravatic that is not even really a “song” but an interlude type track that definitely leans more to a “noise” style. The track “Redacted” has much more detailed composition in terms of chromatic runs and melody.

Definitely a work in progress, i will definitely check that link and get back to you! Thanks for the critique!

OldHorn wrote:
J.D. Heckathorn wrote:

Thank you for listening! I’m hoping to eventually write music for TV/video games so I’m glad it fits that aesthetic. Thanks for the great comment! 🤘🏻👍🏻

If you don't mind, I have a little criticism. I like what you've done, but it gets a little one notey after a while. You seem to be relying on effects more than composition. Studying chromatic mediants as they're used in film scores should open up a new world for you.

You might want to look into music libraries as a place to sell your tracks.

If you want to explore further, this website for media composers might interest you.

https://vi-control.net/portal/

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J.D. Heckathorn
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 20, 2021 5:35 am    Post subject: Re: Recently Released Self-Produced Album Reply with quote

Haha Thanks for the great comment! I would agree listening back that I did rely on effects for inspiration to get this concept going and now that I’ve figured out the direction I want to go I’m definitely in agreement about developing the melodies a bit more. I’ll look more at those examples you give to glean some perspective.

I just got this track back from mastering which will be released in a month or so, I’d love your thoughts on it!

https://www.dropbox.com/s/ch8u5mwh7wds2h5/T3MPVS%20EDAX%20R3RVM%2C%20Pt.%201%20%2824bit%29.wav?dl=0

I used much less reverb and delay on the trumpet and played much more melodically. There’s a section at 1:45 I’m particularly stoked about how it came out.

While I definitely respect and admire how the instrument is used in the classical context I’m less interested in curating the past than I am trying to do something new.

I’m going to look into some tritone exercises to get my mind in a new direction, thanks!

HackAmateur wrote:
J.D. Heckathorn wrote:
I made a djazzy progressive metal album using trumpet as the lead instrument because I figure what’s more metal than a literal metal instrument? Maybe not for everyone, but getting it out into the wild has at least made the year COVID 1984 if even a small bit more enjoyable.

I’ve been here for awhile and I’d love the feedback of such a great community. I recorded all of the horn parts utilizing the yamaha silent brass—>headphone out—>audio interface—>Logic (effects/mixing). Thank you for listening!

https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=OLAK5uy_kIX3SaXudGyBO480qy3xizANxO4pD-occ


Well, you just proved that trumpet can, in fact, be used in metal music. The only other context I've heard trumpet in with this kind of dissonance has been Horror Film or Horror Video Game OSTs. So basically, only in horror music have I heard trumpet in such a dissonant context harmonically.

So, it kind of reminded me of horror music soundtracks to hear you playing trumpet in this kind of dissonance. Of course, metal music has more aggressive beats and percussion than most horror music on films or video games, so obviously it's a different genre.

Metal is all about taking that harmonic dissonance and putting it into a very aggressive context (musically and percussively)... especially Black Metal, which sounds like literal horror soundtrack music turned into Heavy Metal songs. lol

I agree with the user 'OldHorn' on something, though. The effects are nice, but I think you're relying on them to do a lot of heavy-lifting. Speaking of horror film and horror game OSTs, I'd recommend you analyze those to find out some very metal-sounding melodies to play. That would expand your possibilities by a long-shot with this type of stuff.

And you need more tritone leaps. You're trying to put trumpet into a Metal music context? Where are those dark melodies that really bring out the 'Locrian Mode'? Just some tips to improve, but this is a great concept. I really like it.

I, too, kind of roll my eyes at a lot of the classical trumpet conventional thinking. I'm a big fan of soundtrack music, musical theater, and commercial soloist stuff. I'm not interested in playing at Carnegie Hall, though I guess if somebody offered me that opportunity, I'd do it PURELY for the resume. LOL

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urbie watrous
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Joined: 28 Aug 2003
Posts: 144
Location: Boston -> Chicago -> Flagstaff -> Providence

PostPosted: Thu Jul 22, 2021 3:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

J.D. Heckathorn wrote:
Hey thanks for listening and for the kind words! The Silent Brass method of recording is definitely not ideal, and probably seen as blasphemous by many but I lived in a condo up until 2 months ago so it was necessary to find an alternative method to record. It’s simply using a 3mm to 1/4” out of the headphone jack into my audio interface where I can then have it go into Logic Pro x.

On magnetogravatic I didn’t use a looper, to record the odd rhythmic part I actually had the trumpet going through a distortion plugin and something went wrong, I was able to make “tones” by just pressing down the valves so to capture this I recorded it. I’ve tried to replicate it again but whatever went wrong with that plugin I couldn’t get to do again. I also recorded bass trumpet with the tenor trombone silent brass mute using the same method.

I never thought of using the SB in conjunction with a clip on mic, however I wanted as dry a sound as possible to add effects and the unit already has no “reverb off” function so anything you’re recording will at least have the reverb 1 setting. Not a bad idea. I like you’re experimenting with pedals I have not tried that with the silent brass. I’m not sure what cable you’re using but when I tried an XLR in instead of 1/2” I found more clipping issues.

urbie watrous wrote:
This is interesting stuff -- not my usual thing, but I like the way you're putting sounds together. Are you using a looper, on "Magnetogravatic?" How do you minimize the... noise from the SB? I live in an apartment where I can't make much noise, so I'm trying to find the best way to record (trombone, mostly) with a mute (without effing up my sound, chops, and all). I've tried using a little in-bell Dillon practice mute with a clip-on mic -- it's not too bad, and actually sounds remarkably close to an open horn, on a recording. But it's not ideal, so I've been trying the SB. Not too bad, but it does introduce some hiss. I really don't think it's designed to be a Serious Recording Microphone -- it's supposed to be a practice tool. I found that the output wasn't really quite high enough to do what I need, so I got a guitar headphone amp and have been using that, downstream from the SB, so I don't have to crank it all the way up just to hear it well enough. But... all this gain-staging is, for a non-engineer, a matter of trial and error, just twist the knobs until it sounds as good as it's going to sound and doesn't peak, in any of the pieces of equipment I'm using (SB --> preamp --> Eventide H9 --> RC-505 Loop Station --> Tascam DP-24). What other recording setups have you tried, besides the SB, for recording the horn?


No, I don't use the SB with a clip-on mic -- when I'm using another mute (like the Dillon), I use the clip-on. But since I got the SB a couple of months ago, I've been using it exclusively. It's not a perfect solution, because it generates some hiss, and also you have to take the reverb it gives you. Again, because we're doing something it's not really intended for. If someone made a purpose-built in-mute mic, that was designed for what we're doing, that would be better... but as it is, we make do. But your setup sounds really good. If I get to making an album at some point, I might see if you're interested in laying down a track or two over some of my stuff!
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J.D. Heckathorn
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Joined: 16 Aug 2018
Posts: 90

PostPosted: Thu Jul 22, 2021 8:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

urbie watrous wrote:
J.D. Heckathorn wrote:
Hey thanks for listening and for the kind words! The Silent Brass method of recording is definitely not ideal, and probably seen as blasphemous by many but I lived in a condo up until 2 months ago so it was necessary to find an alternative method to record. It’s simply using a 3mm to 1/4” out of the headphone jack into my audio interface where I can then have it go into Logic Pro x.

On magnetogravatic I didn’t use a looper, to record the odd rhythmic part I actually had the trumpet going through a distortion plugin and something went wrong, I was able to make “tones” by just pressing down the valves so to capture this I recorded it. I’ve tried to replicate it again but whatever went wrong with that plugin I couldn’t get to do again. I also recorded bass trumpet with the tenor trombone silent brass mute using the same method.

I never thought of using the SB in conjunction with a clip on mic, however I wanted as dry a sound as possible to add effects and the unit already has no “reverb off” function so anything you’re recording will at least have the reverb 1 setting. Not a bad idea. I like you’re experimenting with pedals I have not tried that with the silent brass. I’m not sure what cable you’re using but when I tried an XLR in instead of 1/2” I found more clipping issues.

urbie watrous wrote:
This is interesting stuff -- not my usual thing, but I like the way you're putting sounds together. Are you using a looper, on "Magnetogravatic?" How do you minimize the... noise from the SB? I live in an apartment where I can't make much noise, so I'm trying to find the best way to record (trombone, mostly) with a mute (without effing up my sound, chops, and all). I've tried using a little in-bell Dillon practice mute with a clip-on mic -- it's not too bad, and actually sounds remarkably close to an open horn, on a recording. But it's not ideal, so I've been trying the SB. Not too bad, but it does introduce some hiss. I really don't think it's designed to be a Serious Recording Microphone -- it's supposed to be a practice tool. I found that the output wasn't really quite high enough to do what I need, so I got a guitar headphone amp and have been using that, downstream from the SB, so I don't have to crank it all the way up just to hear it well enough. But... all this gain-staging is, for a non-engineer, a matter of trial and error, just twist the knobs until it sounds as good as it's going to sound and doesn't peak, in any of the pieces of equipment I'm using (SB --> preamp --> Eventide H9 --> RC-505 Loop Station --> Tascam DP-24). What other recording setups have you tried, besides the SB, for recording the horn?


No, I don't use the SB with a clip-on mic -- when I'm using another mute (like the Dillon), I use the clip-on. But since I got the SB a couple of months ago, I've been using it exclusively. It's not a perfect solution, because it generates some hiss, and also you have to take the reverb it gives you. Again, because we're doing something it's not really intended for. If someone made a purpose-built in-mute mic, that was designed for what we're doing, that would be better... but as it is, we make do. But your setup sounds really good. If I get to making an album at some point, I might see if you're interested in laying down a track or two over some of my stuff!


Whoops, that makes more sense my misunderstanding. I don’t get too much hiss as long as the gain isn’t set too high on my focusrite 2i2 interface. Otherwise I am prone to clip/hiss. I typically set it and play as loud as possible until it doesn’t clip then I know anything I’m playing will not exceed that threshold. Playing lyrically is fun on it and can sound great but staccato and high range takes some listening back to gauge tuning.

Thank you for the kind words! For something that was a solution based on necessity I’m happy with how it came out. I’d love to collab on some of your material! You can hit me up at my Instagram link below or jheckaudio@yahoo.com
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