Weeklybeats 2018 was a 52 week long music project in which artists composed and publicly released 1 song a week for the entire year. Enjoy this archive of over 3,700 music compositions by over 260 artists.
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Tick-tock

By Devieus on August 19, 2018 3:19 pm

I started this week trying to generate a scale with one of my random scale algorithms in real life using a measuring tape; the scale I generated was a serviceable hexatonic one and while transcribing the chords for this particular scale, I noticed a certain chord showing up constantly in various inversions (the finer detail was that I was the Ab/C in C, but it's like a whole thing). That lead me to thinking there's something magic about hexatonic scales, something that's not exactly new information, but it did result in doing the entire song with just two chords and its inversions (while still in line with the whole mode and its chords, you know, all two of them).

The whole tick-tock thing was a something I wanted to do listening to the previous week, it's a great percussive theme: strong but reserved, present but with room for more. It wouldn't even be the first time I did it (except not as haphazardly, every tick is exactly one second apart).

Combining the two is a pretty good match and a decent limitation to breed creativity. For instance, the first tick can be in C, the second in Dm (the major hexatonic is just one possibility, there's a bunch of hexatonic scales that have this behavior, which you can get by just jamming two non-overlapping triads together, e.g. C and C# (which is basically the Arabian scale)). Other chords can theoretically be played as well, like the Am, which while not explicitly in the list can be hinted at, or straight up played if you feel the need to.

The takeaway is don't study music theory, it's detrimental to your composing, and hexatonic scales rule. Screw you B note, nobody likes you.
Also instruments, I guess. I doubled up on everything and automated the panning so one instrument plays one thing left and right, while another instrument plays the same thing right and left, it creates a good balance. Furthermore I made sure the song is exactly 3 minutes long, so you can use it to cook some water or whatever you do in 3 minutes.

This submission is licensed by author under CC Attribution Share Alike (BY-SA)

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August 20, 2018 12:46 am

Love that panning effect.  It's like the Disney electric light parade in my head.  I listened twice while reading.  Very interesting regarding the one second intervals and the two chord structure. So I sat here and grinned like an idiot.  That's what I can do in six minutes.  btw, Can I have a lime with my hexatonic? (I think I can make that joke work 2 weeks in a row). 

August 20, 2018 5:57 am
NWSPR wrote:

Love that panning effect.  It's like the Disney electric light parade in my head.  I listened twice while reading.  Very interesting regarding the one second intervals and the two chord structure. So I sat here and grinned like an idiot.  That's what I can do in six minutes.  btw, Can I have a lime with my hexatonic? (I think I can make that joke work 2 weeks in a row).

I believe anyone can do this in six minutes. Hexatonic scales have one note on the scale per minute after all.

Also, we're out of limes.

Forever.

August 20, 2018 3:09 pm

Slonimsky would have loved this. Especially the tropical feel.

August 20, 2018 4:26 pm
Jim Wood wrote:

Slonimsky would have loved this. Especially the tropical feel.

Never heard of him, but reading up on him he seemed like a stand-up guy.

August 20, 2018 11:07 pm

I always think it's cool to see how much can be done with a minimal amount of chords.  This has a feel of great diversity.  And there is something primal about that tick-tock rhythm.  We've all been exposed to that rhythm probably from a very young age.

August 21, 2018 6:24 am
CosmicCairns wrote:

I always think it's cool to see how much can be done with a minimal amount of chords.  This has a feel of great diversity.  And there is something primal about that tick-tock rhythm.  We've all been exposed to that rhythm probably from a very young age.

Implicit chords can help, there's a G major chord in there somewhere despite there not being a B; the real challenge would be a tritonic scale. The diversity is fairly artificial, the intro and outro are the same instruments, but they're playing each other's parts, though the middle is indeed a completely different set.
Clocks rarely tick these days, so it may seem old-fashioned.

August 23, 2018 1:28 am

August 23, 2018 4:50 am

I love self imposed parameters! Such a good way to force yourself to think creatively.

August 23, 2018 6:01 am
kaedo sevaada wrote:


It's hypnotizing.

Avarine wrote:

I love self imposed parameters! Such a good way to force yourself to think creatively.

I'm more seeing it as exploring an aspect of music theory than putting up limitations. It's kind of the same though, as well as necessary if one is to study music theory, because it goes deep and it's easy to forget to make music while doing it.

August 23, 2018 4:01 pm

Really cool idea with the clock feel and really liked the second half with the bouncing bassline.  Nice job!

August 24, 2018 7:24 am
Tone Matrix wrote:

Really cool idea with the clock feel and really liked the second half with the bouncing bassline.  Nice job!

Yea, I probably should've capitalized a bit more on that second part, even more so than I already have.

August 24, 2018 11:57 pm

Nice - that stereo panning in the headphones really spun me around. Enjoyed the description, I gotta read up on hexatonic scales! Kaedo's clock gif seems the perfect image for this one.

August 25, 2018 7:08 am

This one has a slight Orchestral Manouevres in the Dark vibe to it... I love it smile Yet again a very varied and interesting mix of simple and complicated...

August 25, 2018 12:54 pm
miraclemiles wrote:

Nice - that stereo panning in the headphones really spun me around. Enjoyed the description, I gotta read up on hexatonic scales! Kaedo's clock gif seems the perfect image for this one.

Yea, I thought I'd automate something and panning tracks like that was simple and impactful (plus it was made using headphones, so I know what's going on). The description is probably a little longer than it needed to be, but I can do longer, and I probably will for my next stint; it's not complete either, because that's not a real clock, but two differently pitched rim clicks. Plus I wanted to have a tirade on how MMM got all weird so I had to return to LMMS.
And it's a true fact hexatonic scales are awesome.

Ashen Simian wrote:

This one has a slight Orchestral Manouevres in the Dark vibe to it... I love it smile Yet again a very varied and interesting mix of simple and complicated...

Purely coincidental, I've never heard of them, but they sound alright. Soundfonts deserve a spot this day and age just as well.

September 5, 2018 6:18 pm

I really enjoyed this one a lot, wonderful choice of instruments and tones big_smile

September 6, 2018 5:20 am
Gab Manette wrote:

I really enjoyed this one a lot, wonderful choice of instruments and tones big_smile

Yea, I agree.

September 11, 2018 1:09 pm

I like the harmonies and the triplet works on this one.

September 12, 2018 12:33 am
??? wrote:

I like the harmonies and the triplet works on this one.

Triplets always work.

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