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Jumblatts

Eerie soundtracks

10 posts in this topic

Hey all!

 

Im writing a soundtrack for a 2D platformer set on a derilict space station, the general idea is creepy and eerie, and I was just wondering if any of you guys had any particular favourite soundtracks of that sort. My main point of reference for the pieces ive done so far was bioshock 2, i really like the feel of the solo strings and the atmosphere they create.

 

If youre interested, below are some links to what ive got so far, none of which are complete yet but they should give an idea as to what im looking for.

 

https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/80057791/gameintro.mp3

 

https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/80057791/ambience%201.mp3

 

https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/80057791/menu1.mp3

 

Thanks!

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Hi, Nathan is right, none of these work. Unless that's your idea, absolute silence, hah... I'm funny. No, not really.
I did a quick search on Google: "Creepy Space Ship Music". First hit was a Youtube sample from "Dead Space" and wow, that's some creepy stuff. 
Please fix your links so we can give you proper feedback.

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Hey guys, sorry about the links, hopefully these ones will work, they're direct from my soundcloud.

 

https://soundcloud.com/jumblatts/umbra/s-xUjqh

Umbra, the title track of the game and the main menu theme, i wanted to keep it simple and space-y

 

https://soundcloud.com/jumblatts/columbia/s-IrXTT

Columbia, The main theme of the space station, i tried to capture the 'everyone on this platform is dead' feel

 

https://soundcloud.com/jumblatts/lights-out/s-Ahn7h

Lights out! a mini boss fight

 

https://soundcloud.com/jumblatts/gulch/s-Jnbbf

Gulch, One of the main bosses

 

Feedback would be appreciated, I'll have a look into Dead Space too, thanks for the heads up!

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I just checked out a few of your links. You're on the right path but your current set of samples used are getting in your way. It's going to take quite a bit more production to make things sound more eerie. Right now, with the heavy focus on strings in (mostly) tonal writing - it's coming off more sad/somber than scary. 

 

Perhaps it would be best to combine some synths or drop the strings/orchestral feel altogether. If you're intent on making it an orchestral soundtrack then I think getting some better libraries would really, really help you hit the target!  Also in some cases making eerie music is less about melody (and formal song structure) and more about textures. 

Check out this track: 

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TKGZ_NJ7zuA

 

Part of what makes it eerie is that it's NOT symmetrical and "normal" but instead unusual. 

 

Another great reference - a bit heavier on some melodic content:

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=itQWlQLHgY4

 

And another: 

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o27nlOUhxjY

 

Take note of the percussion usage here. And how the strings go in and out of "tune" by playing clashing notes or doing bends. 

 

Hope that helps! 

 

Nate

Edited by nsmadsen
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A soundtrack to add to that list:

Resident Evil

 

Though I happened to link one in particular, any of them will do. 

 

The music tends to follow the same flow as the pieces that Nm posted, with more emphasis being on timbre and ways to create tension, more so than melodic material.

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The main problem i have is my samples, like you mentioned. All i have to go on is sibelius, and its a fairly low budget production so i cant get anything better.

Whilst i like the idea of a full orchestral score, the other reason i picked it is because they are the samples that sound closest to what they are supposed to be; all the others are computer generated rather than live recorded.

Ill have a look at time signatures and tonality and try to make some of the pieces disjointed, but as for the textures im pretty limited.

Would you say it would be better/more realistic to go for a more sombre soundtrack than eerie, due to my limitations?

 

and m4uesviecr, ill check out resident evil, thanks for pointing it out

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I would say play around a bit. Though it's Sibelius, you still have access to different techniques, like glissandos, and tremolos. It does make everything harder when you have to think notationally. In some cases, it hinders creative flow.

I would say go for a sombre feel, but experiment with textures in Sibelius.
Also, do you have something like Audacity? If possible, you could record and manipulate sounds and incorporate it into your music.

Production value does seem to be a determining factor. Even in writing, it all sounds like a ton of extra work.
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The thing with the textures on sibelius, particularly the gliss, is that it sounds fake, and it stands out a mile from any of the other sounds, the tremolo is quite good, and i used that a bit in some of the pieces, particularly on the timps.

 

I do have audacity, and i had thought of taking samples and using them, but only for sound effects rather than musically.

ill have a go at taking some samples and having a mess around with them all.

what would you suggest? because what i dont really want to happen is for it to become a sibeluis score, with some random sound effects dotted around, and i dont have any of the orchestral instruments on hand to use for a live recording (im a guitarist, what can i say? :P )

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Sibelius is more about music notation. I would get a DAW (Logic, Pro Tools, Reason, Live, Sonar, FL Studio, etc) and begin working with 3rd party libraries that have a better sound. Not sure of your budget but ProjectSAM's stuff is right up your ally. 

Check out this demo using the library: 

 

https://soundcloud.com/projectsam/symphobia-roomwithnodoors

 

https://soundcloud.com/projectsam/symphobia-cursedtreasure

 

Also Spitfire is a good collection of libraries that can make awesome orchestral mock ups as well. It may not be possible with this particular project but it would be a great idea to put these items on your list for possible upgrades in the future. 

Edited by nsmadsen
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Not sure of your budget but ProjectSAM's stuff is right up your ally.

 

This sounds fantastic, unfortunately its way over budget, i couldnt really justify spending any more than £120 at the present time, its definitely something ill keep in mind for future projects though. As for the DAW, I'm running windows, so im not sure i would be able to.

 

I had a quick go at making something on audacity using samples of stuff and fiddling around with them a little. Would you mind telling me what you think?

I tried to get back to the eerie theme, and i think it came off pretty well

https://soundcloud.com/jumblatts/tip-of-the-iceberg/s-e1vcl

 

EDIT: Ive just looked at the sticky thread on DAW's, ill have a more in depth look in the morning but they seem pretty good and some of them are in budget too, thanks for the heads up!

Edited by Jumblatts
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