26th Oct 2016 03:55 - 7 years ago
Tags :
Description : Pretty basic dance track. Was experimenting with the Falcon synth plugin, hence the name. Instrumentation for the melody lines might be a bit unusual, more orchestral. Vocoder is from the Icarus synth plugin, a great new instrument.

Comments (15)

If you have time take a listen and give EricMilligan some feedback.

ApolloForce 28th May 2023 02:35 - 1 year ago
I'm glad I decided to check out your music. Surprised I hadn't heard this before today. This is absolutely wonderful. Really takes me back to the early 2010s. So Nostalgic. I'm going to listen to this the next time I'm cycling off into the sunset. Such a golden, majestic quality about this track. Amazing
EricMilligan replied 13th Feb 2024 - 5 months ago
Thanks for the comment AF. Very sorry about the delay in responding to you. I was off Looperman for some time and didn't realize you had commented on my track.

Daniall 2nd May 2020 18:26 - 4 years ago
It can be said that a special performance with Dance style with this quality. Only someone can be heard who is aware of this work.
EricMilligan replied 13th Feb 2024 - 5 months ago
Thank-you, Daniall, for the comments on my track. I really like doing Dance style music, but realize that I have a lot to learn about making it good. Thanks for the encouragement!

topclass 5th Sep 2018 15:39 - 5 years ago
well surely we must be able to find better vocals from somewhere. I found some paid for ones the other day but even with those it's like one liners or what not lol but never give up, keep on going

well you actually inspired me to do a new trance track too, I originally had a bit of vocals(my own) lol but my laptop mic is hardly ideal :P so it's just inst :D

well i leave a link for your enjoyment (hopefully) ;)
topclass 4th Sep 2018 20:14 - 5 years ago
very true but we never stop learning and maybe possibly even more so from other peoples compositions as it's good to learn from other tracks we hear i think too, just like this great track here from you :) well I like it and yes sometimes it can be tricky to do certain things just like the pros but that's what I like about looperman is I can upload my tracks and get feedback good or bad :D
I'd like to do a few with vocals but never find that much of any good voxes
EricMilligan replied 4th Sep 2018 - 5 years ago
I totally agree about Looperman. It is so great to get real constructive feedback from other Looperman members. I also agree about the problem finding good vocals. It is very frustrating. I have, on occasion, resorted to doing the vocals on my tracks myself, but my singing is beyond atrocious.

There must be thousands of decent, but unknown singers out there who would really like to participate on a track, but I have no idea how to connect with them. Also, doing lyrics is a major roadblock for me. I've got lots of tracks with melodies and clear ideas about the kind of vocal I want, but even if I could somehow find a singer, not much point if I don't have lyrics.

I think this is the greatest frustration for me and, now that I think of it, it is possibly the reason that periodically "bail out" from making music - because I just can't take my tracks to the state that I hear in my head. I guess I could hire a vocalist on a site like SoundBetter, but the track and lyrics would have to be really really good to justify that. Not there yet.
topclass 4th Sep 2018 19:48 - 5 years ago
oh this is so cool of a track, I love it just brilliant, really nice indeed, I really enjoyed this, gotta go play it again :)

well done!!!
EricMilligan replied 4th Sep 2018 - 5 years ago
Thanks, Topclass! My favourite EDM genre is definitely trance. I guess many of the genres seem deceptively simple, but actually the production work is quite complex. I find that really good trance is very difficult to do and I'm not even close to what the pros can do or what I'd like to be able to produce. But, it really is fun music. Spudsy had some good critiques in his comments a few months ago. I really should try to remix this track and see if I can improve it. It's hard, sometimes, to know when something is "finished".

Thanks again.

cyborgnyc 30th Apr 2018 05:43 - 6 years ago
Really nice. You have a great handle on sounds and mixes and arrangements. Gets really cool when the 'vocals' come in. WOuld love to know how you get such a THICK synth sound and get the bass and beats to still cut through. Nice placement and love the dropouts. Would love to take a stab at a vocal track.
EricMilligan replied 4th Sep 2018 - 5 years ago
Hi, Cyborgnyc. Sorry for the delay in responding to your comment. Haven't been very active on Looperman for a while. (I tend to go through fallow periods when not much is happening music-wise.). Anyway, I appreciate your comment.

The "vocals" are all from Icarus, which has a really good set of vocoder patches, and it's easy to add more using external audio files. Listening to the track again after months away from it, I think the mix is actually a bit muddy. Spudsy had some interesting suggestions for revising the mix which might improve it.

The thick synth sound is basically just a supersaw present patch in the Falcon VST. I think I tweaked it slightly, but not a great deal.

I put an EQ plugin effect on every channel in the mix and I generally cut off all frequencies below 20 hz. sometimes higher. I usually cut off the very high frequencies as well.

Then, I do try to focus the sound of each instrument/channel in a particular region of the frequency spectrum so things don't get really muddy. I could have done that better in this track I think.

I do routinely use compression to tighten bass and drum parts. Sometimes, more than one compressor per channel. I think that helps make them more distinct in the mix.

I often use two, sometimes three different patches running simultaneously for bass lines, EQing each one differently to focus the patch on different sonic features (e.g, a hard transient attach vs. full sub bass).

I routinely use the same layering approach for the kick drum parts. I'm trained as a drummer, but actually suck big time at making good drum parts. (Can't figure out why I'm so bad at it!). Anyway, I will typically resort to midi drum loops from a drum machine VST, but I often program and layer in a kick drum part using Metrum, which has a fantastic selection of kick drum sounds.

That's all pretty standard technique I think. Always trying to learn more and make things sound better. Getting a really beautiful, clear mix, like you hear in Daft Punk's Random Access Memories still eludes me. But then, I'm no Mike Guzauski! :)
Spudsy 7th Feb 2018 22:40 - 6 years ago
Nice ideas but the main lead/white noise sound is very flat and could really use some width and movement. This will help the track come to life and give it some much needed increase in sonic interest.

At 1:45, I had check because I thought I had pressed play on another track at the same time. The extra drums are very jarring and takes you out of the nice melodies you have going on.

Nice percussion at 2:36.

All round some good ideas just let down by synth presets, effects and some weird drum choices.

The mixdown could use a little tweaking too, with some more side chain and compression here and there to get the whole track moving and weaving with itself.

Thanks for sharing.

EricMilligan replied 8th Feb 2018 - 6 years ago
Hey, Spudsy! I really appreciate the constructive advice on this track. Thanks for taking the time to critique it. The kind of help is actually kind of unusual here, but it is exactly what I need to improve my stuff. Haven't listened to this track for quite a while. I'm going to work through it with your comments and do some experimentation.

I've kind of avoided using side chain compression because I'm very unsure about setting it up, although I have done it successfully in the past. I guess its like programming automation on tracks, once you get the hang of it, it isn't so scary.

No question that drums is a serious weak spot in my tracks generally. I tend to find a midi loop that seems to work and I get lazy and don't work on variation like I should. Your comment raises a different point, of course. Just a bad choice of extra drums.

As far as the lead sound is concerned, I think I know how to give it width in the mix, but not sure about movement, except to experiment with chorus or phaser effects?

Thanks again for your advice on this.

sqrtofneg1 17th Feb 2017 19:47 - 7 years ago
Great track!

I was not expecting the flute at the beginning as the principal melody line.
I was pleasantly surprised.

The section at 0:53 sounds great. Perhaps a little change in percussion could have emphasized that a bit more.

I like how you play with the panning in the melody line throughout later on - it really adds another layer of expression.

The snap? sound with reverb when all the other instruments dropped out around 2:25 ish was excellent. It added a bit of punch.

Well done!
EricMilligan replied 27th Jun 2017 - 7 years ago
Thanks, sqrtofneg1. Again, I apologize for not responding to your post sooner. I have been off Looperman for some time I guess.
kingmadi 21st Dec 2016 17:45 - 7 years ago
Damn I like it! The flute adds a nice touch.
EricMilligan replied 21st Dec 2016 - 7 years ago
Thanks, Kingmadi. I appreciate the feedback. I guess flutes are a bit unusual in this kind of track. But, seemed to work, so that's what I went with.

Checked out some of your tracks. Nice work! Mixes sound really good, by the way. Nicely balanced. I'm still struggling to learn how to do mixes properly. It's been years and I'm still not getting the quality that I hear from release by some of my favourite artists. I guess being a pro really makes a difference. It's the ears, not the equipment.

Been listening to Bruno Mar's new album, 24 Magic. First saw the video for the title track in heavy rotation when I was in the UK a few weeks ago. This guy is a serious musician and a real perfectionist, like every great artist is, I guess. Apparently he thinks nothing of throwing out chord sequences, lyrics, melodies, beats, whatever, and just starting over if the song doesn't keep him engaged for every single second.

I love the retro R&B feel to that album. I'm a big fan of Brody Brown, who co-produced the album (another really good musician). He's got a way of blending the new with the old. I'm still trying to figure out how to do that. :)
crucethus 5th Nov 2016 03:51 - 7 years ago
". I am assuming that you are suggesting automating the cutoff point on the filter to progressively cut back on the high frequency content as the phrase plays? "
Exactly my friend I am experimenting with VST's as well lately in my songs, have fun with them ehh?
BradoSanz 5th Nov 2016 03:49 - 7 years ago
Well, its been a long time since I've seen your lovely presence on LM! Regardless of the other critiques, I absolutely love the energy this song contains. It sounds very happy and the flute really adds that lovely element to it all. I'm assuming you're playing this by hand? The synths are slighty - *slightly* - out of time and while this is no big deal, it was something I noticed. The vocal is beautiful, the way it's spliced and harmonizes with itself is great!

EricMilligan replied 23rd Nov 2016 - 7 years ago
Yes, it has been a long time. Sorry for not responding sooner. Just got back from 2 weeks in Scotland. Basically offline the whole time. Yes, played it all in by hand. Other than drum parts. I agree that there are some timing issues with how the various parts sync up, timing wise. I need to work on that more I guess. I do use quantization, but usually give it some flexibility so it is not robotic. I should experiment with strict quantization perhaps and see if that improves things.

Anyway, thanks for the constructive criticism. Need more of that.

Eighteen 2nd Nov 2016 16:16 - 7 years ago
I like the synths the song starts with.

The flute combined with the rest of the track is a weird combination but a very good one nonetheless.

Vocals are very cool, did u manage to use vocaloid already? it kinda sounds like it but I am not sure :)

Very awesome melody, u make stuff I like a lot, really my kinda music :D

Very nice job man!


EricMilligan replied 2nd Nov 2016 - 7 years ago
Thanks for the comment, Eighteen. I agree, the use of the flute and, in fact, the french horns in a pretty traditional dance track is a bit weird. At least I think it is. I haven't had much time to listen to the latest stuff for quite a while, so am feeling a bit out of touch with what's current. Was listening yesterday to Beats 1 radio on Apple Music and was quite surprised by some of the "new" tracks that are considered to be cutting edge stuff.

Anyway, no the vocals are built-in phrases triggered by preset vocoder patches in the Icarus synth plugin. That synth makes it pretty easy to create new vocoder patches that use vocal phrases that you record and the built in synth engines in the plugin. I haven't actually tried that yet, but I intend to do so when I get a bit of time. A couple of years ago I recorded about 30 or 40 short phrases that could be used with vocoder apps. Setting them up as inputs to a vocoder signal processing plugin is a bit complicated, but I think that Icarus greatly simplifies things. Different approach, because it works within the instrument plugin, not as an audio effect plugin.

I did some research on vocaloid for Mac. Looks like I'd have to buy the Steinberg DAW in order to use the Mac editor. Then, I'd need to bounce the resulting track to audio and import it into Logic, which is the DAW I use. I need to do more research to see if there's a cheaper and less complicated solution. It really is something that interests me.

crucethus 2nd Nov 2016 04:07 - 7 years ago
I agree with mosaic. great mix, nice stereo seperation and clarity. And I agree with you about the high frequency issues. Have you thought about adding a cutoff filter for that High synth stab that could slowly descend as you play the phrases?
Overall nice job.
EricMilligan replied 2nd Nov 2016 - 7 years ago
Steve: No, that actually didn't occur to me. I did try EQing that track, but I do have some other filter plugins that I could experiment with. Good idea. I am assuming that you are suggesting automating the cutoff point on the filter to progressively cut back on the high frequency content as the phrase plays? I've never actually automated anything in my tracks other than volume and pan. This is a good opportunity to learn something new. I think it's pretty simple to do. Just need to read up on how to do it in Logic.

If I'm successful, I'll post a new version and, as suggested by Mosaic, I'll remaster the track to give a bit more oomph.

Mosaic 28th Oct 2016 09:54 - 7 years ago
Hi Eric

Mate very nice track, nice beat and bass, nice synths, vocals work nice in the track, good clarity of the mix, volume could have been a touch higher as I had to adjust my normal listening volume up to get the full benefit of your work...either way totally enjoyed the tune...fav...peace n respect Eric...mosaic...
EricMilligan replied 2nd Nov 2016 - 7 years ago
Thanks for taking the time to provide feedback on my track, Mosaic. Very much appreciated.

I actually mastered three versions of the track using LANDR, each producing a different volume level and level of compression. I usually opt for the middle level, but for some reason (which I can't remember) I decided to go for the lowest intensity level on this track. In retrospect, I think I should have gone one notch higher.

Crucethus, in his comment, has suggested that I insert a low-pass filter on the synth track in the project. I think I'll give that a try and then remaster to a higher volume level generally. Of course, this means that I need to figure out how to automate the controls in my filter plugin, something that I've never tried before. :)

Thanks again,

Tumbleweed 27th Oct 2016 03:42 - 7 years ago
Hi Eric...not being much of a keyboard player I`m not familiar with the synth plugins you mention (been thinking of investing in a new outboard synth one of these days when I dispose of some of the current toys)....I like this little chord prog I`m of those just good to hear & a bit addicting things..and being one who tends to compose around progressions much of the time I`m enjoying this one a lot...kudos on the production too...everything sits nice & clear in the mix...I could listen to lots of music like this...a big well done to you...Ed
EricMilligan replied 27th Oct 2016 - 7 years ago
Thanks, Ed. I am embarrassed to admit that I've let my guitar chops, which were never that great frankly, totally evaporate. I've got two acoustics hanging on the wall in my home studio/office and I basically never pick them up. I really should get back on that trail. I use an Access Virus outboard synth as my controller keyboard and it does sound great, but other than that, all of my instruments are virtual. I guess I compose around progressions too, but I need to learn more of them so I can get greater variety and interest in my stuff. I'm keeping a list of progressions to try out. The mix on that track was difficult and I'm still not sure if I got it right. The synth chords have a pretty good bass floor to them if you listen to them on headphones or a decent set of studio monitors, so I originally did the track without a separate bass track. Didn't sound like it needed it. Then I bounced it to MP3 and played it in my car. Sounded awful. No bass and really annoying high frequencies dominating. There's a lot of noise in the synth chord part. That's programmed into the patch on purpose I think so that it cuts through. I added 3 bass tracks and it sounded better, but I still find the high frequency content a bit much and I have tinnitus, so have some measure of hearing loss for high frequencies. So, I always worry that, for others, my mixes actually don't sound like I hear them.

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