Thursday, November 17, 2011

Between the Eyes

Kwakfest on Saturday started a compo weekend and marked its triumphant return after a year-long hiatus. A whopping 23 entries that night resulted from its loose theme related to The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim. Saturday also happened to be the second round for the Wily Castle Remix Gauntlet, in which DarkeSword selected Wily Stage 1 from Mega Man 2 for team members to tackle. Punchfest 16 occurred on Sunday, thus continuing the weekend festivities. The theme for the round was “Vertical Shooters”, opening up a slew of video game music for participants to remix. For a bonus, entrants could also elect to do it vertically, with SnappleMan adding “I don't care, find a way.”

For JHCompo on Tuesday I selected a theme inspired by the NYPD’s recent actions on Occupy Wall Street protesters: “The Raid”. The ambiguity in the phrasing meant the entries largely leaned toward military movements. Alestance rolled the timpani and fired brass as he pondered over a day he will never forget. irrelevnt posted army chatter that is ominously cut off in mid-sentence. liquidwind’s track is washed over with flying jets, an explosion and a percussion session. LoneStar made her second JHCompo appearance, offering live electronic work self-described as “Omigosh Too Long (It Really Is Mix)”. coda again referenced canies when he deployed the “D.O.G.Z. Squadron” with a composition that recalls the days of the Sega Genesis. zebra’s ambient glissandos established the mood before settling in a lo-fi beat. Finally Torzelan preceded his frantic metal with a voice clip and proceeds despite a momentary bit of silence.

Thursday’s OHC featured "The Stranger" as its theme, thereby giving me the opportunity to read aloud some Billy Joel lyrics. Fusion2004's description almost looked like a transcript of a film trailer voiceover, which suited his string-heavy music with bits of electro. Forty-Two found himself in a "Kingdom of Ice" framed by Rhodes, bells, and pizzicatos. HarryNilsson'sGhost's conceptual piece starts off with a raw synth tone tamed by pervasive drum machines. The good doctor Arcana experienced sensations that could be diagnosed as dubstep-like, but with a dollop of bloops. swordofdestiny began with a quick stereo pan to clear the air, then offered a cautionary tale by way of brass intertwined with e-lines.  

Hapi-San swung "Along in the Rain" by putting his double bass and organ next to a spacey lead and heavy sounds of a storm.  Flexstyle perhaps worked on music in isolation for too long, as he proclaimed "I Just Want a Friend" and put out a mellow dance tune. Billy Joel was kind enough to join the round and retroactively created the song "The Stranger" to meet the compo theme. munchi stumbled into OHC through "The Fog" and found his way along by following the harp arpeggio, piano and head-bobbing drums. sci continued his megasong for the month and threw in all manner of elements, including chip melodies and a warped vocal clip. 

DDRKirby(ISQ) fired up a "Grooveshark" funk beat embellished with violins and and e-piano breakdown. frkygp was no stranger to audio panning, and worked out some electronic music despite apparently having Ableton crashes. CJthemusicdude's entry brings to mind the Dragnet theme and Tums ads, all while being cautious of the stranger. As the listening party winded down, Zovi presented a 5-minute excursion into aural madness narrated by muttering voice. Acuity finished things off with a more straightforward synths to make the body, and rests on a bed of delayed piano.

1 comment:

  1. I'm not zebra! :)
    coda really knocked it out of the park this JHCompo.


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