There are a lot of great points in this video that will trigger you take some time and think. New York has extreme seasons and I can attest it definitely makes me notice the passing of time and therefore makes me work harder. Last week my mother’s cat and long time friend Asriel passed away. She was 14 years old. Yesterday I bought an iPad. I pulled up a few photos of Asriel on the device. The past, present and future collide.
“Professor Philip Zimbardo conveys how our individual perspectives of time affect our work, health and well-being. Time influences who we are as a person, how we view relationships and how we act in the world.” – theRSAorg
Here’s an easy technique that I use often to add tension to a chorus. I create an instance of the Impulse drum module in Ableton Live and load in a kit. In this example I am using a free kit called “Cassette 808” which is available for download at goldbaby.co.nz. Next, I create a my drum pattern. Inside Impulse I adjust the individual drum volumes, pannings and filters for each of the samples. I then dial back the Time parameter to -38%. The Time parameter affects all the samples inside Impulse at once. Cutting back the overall Time percent makes each drum each shorter and tighter. I like to keep my drums tight like this during the verses of my songs. I then automate the Time parameter to +30% when the chorus hits. This adds a sense of excitement and power to the chorus. You could use this method instead or in addition to adding rides or open hihats to a chorus (which creates a similar feeling). It’s also a good idea to automate the Time parameter further at key points in your arrangement. For example, if you want to focus on the last word of a verse try dialing the Time parameter to -90% for just a few syllables.
“The Time control governs the time-stretching and decay of all samples, allowing you to morph between short and stretched drum sounds.” – Ableton Live User Manual
Don’t stop playing with the Time knob there. Try duplicating your drum channel by hitting COMMAND-D. Now Pan your duplicated channel all the way left or right and turn the Time parameter to +100%. Cut the bass out of your new channel and you have a nice new color poking at your listeners ear. You could keep your new fully Time lengthened channel Panned Center and throw an Autopan plug-in on it. Why not also add a flanger or distortion? It’s great fun duplicating and adding effects to channels.
Here is an audio example:
Are you using time stretching as a songwriting element?