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What makes a mix sound wide if its bad practice to pan orchestral samples?

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thevisi0nary

thevisi0nary

Active Member
Thanks a lot for posting this! Are you working on a Bloodborne mockup or just trying to get the template there? I'd be interested to hear how far you've come.
You got it! Really I am just a little obsessed with the soundtrack and I have been trying to learn as much as I can about it, so that I can incorporate those elements into my writing.

On musecore I found a fairly accurate transcription of the string section of the Cleric Beast theme, so I just transcribed that for midi. Haven't done any CC tweaking really so far so it's pretty raw.
 

MartinH.

Senior Member
You got it! Really I am just a little obsessed with the soundtrack and I have been trying to learn as much as I can about it, so that I can incorporate those elements into my writing.

On musecore I found a fairly accurate transcription of the string section of the Cleric Beast theme, so I just transcribed that for midi. Haven't done any CC tweaking really so far so it's pretty raw.
Thanks for sharing! Good to see someone else transscribing from that soundtrack too. I've picked "the hunter" for my mockup and I'm endlessly wrestling with hearing what the low strings are doing, but I think I finally made some progress by figuring out that they probably used a combination of triplets and pentuplets and I'd never have thought of that.

I haven't looked at any transcriptions yet, I thought I'd learn the most when I do it myself. Ideal would be having the actual score to check afterwards what I got right, but that seems to be impossible. I've read from people trying to get them through sony and for an academic project but seems to have reached a deadend.

I thought I'm probably pretty bad at transscribing, but I've tried recently mocking up a metal song from a tab (because I was lazy and didn't want to do the work), but I very quickly found errors and the way I've transcribed it works much better with the original.

I always try to map out the tempo in a way that I can play my version and the reference track exactly in sync, and then I switch back and forth or let them play at the same time. It helps me to hear the original and switch my version on and off during playback, to see if it just gets louder or if there are any harmonic changes that shouldn't be there.

Do you happen to know what percussions they used? I feel like there must be some non-tonal stuff that fills out the frequency spectrum that I'm missing. And do you know if/how they used synth or samples to augment the orchestra?

Have you thought about how you're gonna mock up the choir in "cleric beast"? I'd imagine that to be quite tough because it's so exposed.
 

MartinH.

Senior Member
You got it! Really I am just a little obsessed with the soundtrack and I have been trying to learn as much as I can about it, so that I can incorporate those elements into my writing.

On musecore I found a fairly accurate transcription of the string section of the Cleric Beast theme, so I just transcribed that for midi. Haven't done any CC tweaking really so far so it's pretty raw.
In case you're interested this is where I'm currently at with my mockup/transcription practice. The high strings at the end are still very wrong, haven't figured those out yet, but not given up either:



and the original for reference:

 

Pincel

New Member
In case you're interested this is where I'm currently at with my mockup/transcription practice. The high strings at the end are still very wrong, haven't figured those out yet, but not given up either:



and the original for reference:

Love the Bloodborne soundtrack! There's definitely a lot of interesting stuff to be learned regarding composition/orchestration by studying that music. It would be really cool to have access to the scores, but probably never going to happen.

Your mockup is sounding very good for the most part!
Since you're struggling with that last section, I took the liberty to make a small transcription if you're interested, which I believe is a bit more accurate, or at least might help you in some way.
It IS hard to make out exactly what the Low Strings are doing in that part though, so take it with a grain of salt.

Keep it up man, that's definitely the way to learn. I should stop being lazy and start doing this kind of stuff too... :D
 

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OP
thevisi0nary

thevisi0nary

Active Member
Thanks for sharing! Good to see someone else transscribing from that soundtrack too. I've picked "the hunter" for my mockup and I'm endlessly wrestling with hearing what the low strings are doing, but I think I finally made some progress by figuring out that they probably used a combination of triplets and pentuplets and I'd never have thought of that.

I haven't looked at any transcriptions yet, I thought I'd learn the most when I do it myself. Ideal would be having the actual score to check afterwards what I got right, but that seems to be impossible. I've read from people trying to get them through sony and for an academic project but seems to have reached a deadend.

I thought I'm probably pretty bad at transscribing, but I've tried recently mocking up a metal song from a tab (because I was lazy and didn't want to do the work), but I very quickly found errors and the way I've transcribed it works much better with the original.

I always try to map out the tempo in a way that I can play my version and the reference track exactly in sync, and then I switch back and forth or let them play at the same time. It helps me to hear the original and switch my version on and off during playback, to see if it just gets louder or if there are any harmonic changes that shouldn't be there.

Do you happen to know what percussions they used? I feel like there must be some non-tonal stuff that fills out the frequency spectrum that I'm missing. And do you know if/how they used synth or samples to augment the orchestra?

Have you thought about how you're gonna mock up the choir in "cleric beast"? I'd imagine that to be quite tough because it's so exposed.
Yes I have found threads on forums about people writing to either sony or the composers and orchestrators, no one has been able to get any official scores. =/ It's really a shame. From the GDC video it says that the percussion consisted of timpani and different chimes, I don't know however if that includes the use of sfx hits. I do know that in the video that they say that at least for the strings, basically all of the aleatoric sounds are from symphobia. The other orchestrator said that the brass sfx was recorded (at least for the dlc tracks). There also has to definitely be some atmospheric sfx going on at some parts (like the ones you hear at the beginning of many of the tracks for example). They haven't said anything that would indicate synth layering for augmenting the orchestra. For the choir I've thought about investing in EW Hollywood Choirs mainly because of the word builder and the fact that it sounds pretty exposed. I feel similar to you in that most of the choir libraries I have heard from demo's have that heavy cathedral ambiance going on.
 
OP
thevisi0nary

thevisi0nary

Active Member
In case you're interested this is where I'm currently at with my mockup/transcription practice. The high strings at the end are still very wrong, haven't figured those out yet, but not given up either:



and the original for reference:

This sounds awesome you did an excellent job! What libraries are you using for the brass? I do think the starting note on some of the run parts (0:31) are about one step higher. Sounds really sick.
 

MartinH.

Senior Member
Your mockup is sounding very good for the most part!
Since you're struggling with that last section, I took the liberty to make a small transcription if you're interested, which I believe is a bit more accurate, or at least might help you in some way.
It IS hard to make out exactly what the Low Strings are doing in that part though, so take it with a grain of salt.

Keep it up man, that's definitely the way to learn. I should stop being lazy and start doing this kind of stuff too... :D
Thanks so much for the feedback, help and encouragement!
I gave that high strings part another shot before I looked at your version and got a bit closer, but after comparing it to your version I think yours must be more correct. I'll upload a new version soon that goes on a tiny bit longer and has the first bit of choir in it.


This sounds awesome you did an excellent job! What libraries are you using for the brass? I do think the starting note on some of the run parts (0:31) are about one step higher. Sounds really sick.
Thanks a lot! The brass is all Metropolis Ark 1 (horns, trombones, tuba) and in one place the "majestic horn" from Organic Samples / Orchestral tools is layered, but I'm not sure I even needed that. Probably gonna take it out as I tweak some more.

I checked the brass part you mentioned and listening to just the two soundcloud tracks here I thought "damn, you're right, how could I miss that?", but actually trying it out and playing original and mine in sync and shifting that melody various amounts of semi tones up or down I don't think any other place fits better. My rule of thumb is "if it sounds equally bad one semi tone up and one semi tone down, I'm likely on the right one, but possibly in the wrong octave". And I think I indeed had most of the trombone parts one octave too high. I think the next version that I'll upload should be closer.

The strings I used are about half/half NI SSC SE and Met Ark 1, the percussions are also from the NI Symphony Series Collection, and the choir currently is Requiem Light.

From the GDC video it says that the percussion consisted of timpani and different chimes, I don't know however if that includes the use of sfx hits.
I've used timpani too but I feel like with just timpani something is missing that the basedrum could fill. Doesn't mean it actually is the basedrum of course.


This is a different track and a live performance which doesn't necessarily do everything the same as for the recording sessions, but I'm pretty sure I see a bass drum there:



Regarding the drony bass tone at the beginning where I thought it might be a synth, I switched the articulation to sordino and it already sounds much closer I think.


P.S.: to get yet another comparison perspective I have re-routed things to another track that puts my version in mono hard panned to the left and the original in mono hardpanned to the right. So it becomes more obvious when things are out of sync during playback. It makes some things easier to compare and some things impossible to compare, so it really depends on what you're listening for if it makes sense. But I welcome it as another tool in the belt and I can easily solo/mute that track as needed.
 
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