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  • New Symphonic Movement Featuring VSL Pro Edition

    The first piece on the linked page is the beginning of my 6th symphony. The first mp3 on the page is the first movement of what will be a 4 movement work, I am currently composing the 3rd movement.

    The sample libraries used are VSL pro edition, GOS strings, and FM7 and Tera software synths. Also used are two Roland synths. I hope you enjoy this composition/recording. It is 12 minutes in length.

    http://www.jerrygerber.com/excerpts.htm

  • Here are some comments received regarding this movement:

    This is amazing.Very advanced in composition,programing,recording&mixing.This is an example for the use of VSL in its full potential.The

    VSL people should really be proud of you.There couldn't be any better publicity for their product than your work.If all these are done in sonar

    cakewalk people should also be proud of you.I offer my best wishes to your future projects.
    R.Chandrasekhar


    Jerry,

    Very accomplished work. Immediately sets the mood and leads the listener through a constantly changing landscape of emotional nuances.

    Full but not overpowering. Good variety in the instrumentation. Love the clarinet melodies. Great harp/piano in the middle. Really like the

    rhythmic motif that reappears from time to time. Love the pizzicatto (?) strings about 3/4 through. I really like the mellow parts between the

    louder parts. Each one had its own personality, instrument combination, and motif - I could easily imagine the motifs from the resting points

    expanded into longer explorations as their own pieces. This piece has a lot to offer. Nicely done.

    Bill

  • Sounds more like GPO. What is VSL in there?

  • I listened to the first movement. I could dissent according to my sensibilities, but who cares? My primary take is that it's a hard thing to sustain symphonic interest for twelve minutes in this day, and hey, you did it for me. Salute.

    But the mock-up is not up to the standard of the demos heard here. Like Dave, I can't tell what's from the Pro Edition. I didn't hear any legato winds. The strings were passable but unvaried. The brass in particular is below average, blatty, and reminiscent of the late '80's. This sounds like an orchestra with a pinch of sampling and a lot of synths.

    Whoever you are, I think you have a mature musical mind. I wish for you a full bore VSL set-up. Admittedly, hand-matching much of this work to appropriate samples would be a task in itself. Perhaps you just want to write and be performed. I think your work is worthy of either.

    VSL has more to offer you than this.

  • Listened for music only reasons. The soft section midway with the clarinets is very nice (the samples/sounds work much better there and allow the listener to get into the piece.) Some very nice writing toward the end in climaxes that are built well. It's difficult to talk about various musical merits because it's hard to tell exactly what's going on in sections with lots of brass etc.

    VSL is going to present your work far better and give it the justice it deserves. You're obviously talented and hard working and possess a wealth of ideas. Start grabbing these VI collections and you will enhance your sound considerably. I have a problem getting a decent sound and I have VI.

    Welcome Jerry. We look forward to hearing more of your work.

  • I have considered your comments about my work gentlemen, and have a response.

    Firstly, the comment that my recordings are not up to a "standard" is not a standard I adhere to so of course I don't emulate it. This comment directly relates to the usage of the term "mockup", which in fact does a terrible disservice to serious composers as it implies everything from fakery, a hastily-conceived interpretation of an idea, to, at best, merely a way to test out ideas for another medium, like the way a Polaroid camera has been used by photographers to test out the lighting and composition of a scene before making the exposure with a different camera. It also negatively suggests a lack of performance values and technique, that there is an insufficient consideration regarding the most important aspects of the interpretation of music. I dropped the word "mockup" from my vocabulary and thought many years ago and advise any serious electronic musicians to do the same, it will really help to develop more creative artistic attitudes toward your digital tools.

    It is not my intent to treat my musical tools as less than what they are capable of. My willingness to develop whatever techniques are necessary for that goal are demonstrated in my music. I listened to several demos, one in particular, a Mahler slow movement was quite splendidly done. The musician/programmer had the delicate and wide sensibilities to choose the right timbres with very much of the superb dynamics that Mahler always developed in his music. But a Beethoven piece is not as successful, using the same VSL library. The strings were not singing, the decay of the strings particularly were rough and the winds too sharp, too forward. It is always extremely challenging to bring sensual life and poetic justice to any sound library. Of course every library carries its own sonic signature, but once composition and orchestration brought to bear on the project, how it sounds becomes much more complex, the sound becomes as much about the technique, originality and aesthetic of the musician as it is about the library. It is not very useful to compare how VSL sounds using a 18th or 19th century piece of music with a modern composition because of differences in harmonic language, orchestration styles and approach to both form and musical development.

    My music is about getting my own unique sound, which I do. I am not an orchestra, I am not approaching this work as though the endgame is to sound exactly like real instruments. If that were the goal, I'd be working in the acoustic medium! If you want a real orchestra sound, you have to work with a real orchestra. If you want a new sound based on new digital tools, use the new instruments. There will always be overlap; traditions blend, collide, conflict and resolve, and new original works are made each year to reflect that reality. The modern classical orchestra is a fine ideal and measure for the sheer magnitude of timbral diversity, dynamics and sonic beauty music it is capable of. But
    besides aspiring to this ideal, as even great mastering engineers have written about doing, even when mastering pop music, one must understand both the limits and potentials of the medium one works in. If you listen carefully to many of the brass sections you will hear the detail I put there: orchestral blend, transparency, weight, balance and harmony are far more important considerations than every instrument having to sound "new". There are new sounds in my work and there are the traditional instruments and that is the way I want it to be.

    Sound is only half the battle, the potency of expressive sound itself can take us only so far. Composition and the imaginative and original development of material is equally important. If we are overemphasizing "realism" I think we are deluding ourselves. The experience of sitting in a concert hall and hearing a great orchestra is a unique experience and no sound library will ever duplicate or replace that experience. As a producer of music recordings, my goal is make the most interesting music I can, while sounding as musical as possible. I hope this helps clarify what my artistic intent is and helps you to gain more appreciation for my work.

    Thanks for listening.

    Jerry Gerber
    www.jerrygerber.com

  • Jerry,
    having read all that you've written caefully, and taken note of your determination to consider what you've written in its own right, and not as an attempt at 'realism' i can, with those preconditions in mind, be objective in the criteria you wish to be listened by.

    Dave is right. In the middle you've written some fairly useful stuff.
    But there's a lack of cohesion overall, as if you've taken a leaf out of Stravinski's book, and put things together in chunks. I will be frank, as you seem to want that, and say a lot of this was boring, and repetitive. Perhaps a rethink about what you're trying to achieve, and resist the temptation to 'fill bars'. This piece could have worked a lot better if compressed to a more complete relavence overall, say 6 or 8 minutes, and in several passages, you could have chopped large chunks out with no loss.

    As for your performance, in the terms you demand, i found it incomplete. Taking into account your paragraph about sample performance in its own right, violins still require some semblance of 'playability'. Much of this sounds synthetic to an irritating degree (IMHO), and personally, i don't think you've done VSL or GOS any favours with this rendition. Perhaps a further listen to the Mahler, and some of Guy Bacos, William Kersten, etc, will provide further clues for you to enhance further your performance skills with samples.

    As i started with, there is some good stuff in here, and certainly worthy of further development. I take your point about a performance without preconceived perceptions of 'realism', and so offer these comments from a musical perspective, and without attempting to 'demand' or influence your particular performance direction.

    You asked for an honest opinion based on your own criteria, and i have tried to be as objective as possible, based on that.


    Alex.

  • Jerry,

    My comments were not philosophical in any way but merely addressing the sound. One can evaluate music without it sounding particular good or up to any standard. If sound issues actually get in the way of listening to or hearing the musical thought, whatever purposes, goals or artistic aims of the composer are hindered. I can't imagine you intend to distract your audience from the music by shortcomings in it's presentation. It's something everyone and their brother and sister has to deal with that's doing music on computers: the basic sound. I have been told countless times that my production values need to to improve by people who I admire and certainly have no brook against my artistic motives or aims.

    No ones dictating, just listening.

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    @JerryG said:

    Thanks for listening.


    Your welcome. Reminded me vaguely of "Lawrence of Arabia" (1962). Sounds more like a film soundtrack, or an ouverture, then a symphony. I saw virtually camels coming over the horizon of the Merzouga dune.

    .

  • PaulP Paul moved this topic from Orchestration & Composition on