Distortion Components: Week 9

In week 9 we were asked to go into the studios to induce distortion on some signal. We used a 100 Hz sine wave and used various techniques of distortion including, input distortion, output distortion, software distortion and daisy chaining. In this blog post I will be analysing the components of that distortion using a Spectrum Analyser.

I will start off with the unaffected 100 Hz sine wave: Screen Shot 2015-11-23 at 9.56.20 AM.png

As you can see there is obviously just a peak at 100 Hz with no harmonic content.

We started by cranking the desks input gain which had this affect on the 100Hz wave:Screen Shot 2015-11-25 at 1.27.17 PM

As you can see the odd multiples are louder than the even multiples, decreasing in amplitude as frequency increases, varying in amplitude.

We then routed the signal through a 1176 Compressor outboard hardware unit, cranking the input and output gain up, this was the affect that this had on the 100 Hz sine wave:Screen Shot 2015-11-23 at 9.59.05 AM.png

As you can see adding this distortion gave the wave harmonic content. As you can see the harmonics are evenly spaced at multiples of 100 Hz but they decrease in amplitude they multiply in frequency.

We then daisy chained our outboard hardware units, a 1176 Compressor, TLA Compressor and a TRS-12 Multi FX unit. Screen Shot 2015-11-23 at 10.12.02 AM

As you can see I boosted the gain of the EQ just so we could get a more clear view of the harmonic content. Once again we have the harmonic content increasing by multiples of 100 Hz. But the level of amplitude varies as every odd harmonic is louder than the even harmonics. The amplitude decreasing as the frequency increases once again.

Next we just simply inserted the BF76 Compressor plugin on Pro Tools to induce distortion: Screen Shot 2015-11-23 at 10.20.54 AM

Once again we have harmonics predominantly on the odd multiples decreasing in amplitude, although just above 2 kHz theres a small bell curve.

In this part of the unit we have explored the elements of distortion and how we can use it to our advantage or recognise the negative affect of it.

In this Module I believe I have addressed LO’s: 2, 16 and 21.

 

 

 

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Distortion Components: Week 9

Case Study: Ta-Ku- Love Again (Feat. JMSN & Sango)

(Structure and Sonic Characteristics on VAT)

Taku’s track Love Again from the album Songs To Make Up To crosses over the line of many different genres from classical to hip hop and even to soul. He reaches into these genres throughout the album shining new light on the EMP world and creating a very hifi, clean sound. The album was released in June, 2015 and has been a massive hit following its sister album Songs To Break Up To, released in August, 2013.

Genre

Taku’s track Love Again from the album Songs To Make Up To crosses over the line of many different genres from classical to hip hop and even to soul. He reaches into these genres throughout the album shining new light on the EMP world and creating a very hifi, clean sound. The album was released in June, 2015 and has been a massive hit following its sister album Songs To Break Up To, released in August, 2013.

Era

Released in 2015, Taku’s track isn’t so much about whats going on around the world, but more what is happening on a personal level and specifically heart break. The track is open for the listener to empathise with the message and possibly link it back to their own personal issues.

In this modern day and age EMP artists are turning to solely using artificial computerised sounds, but Taku ties in authentic clean instruments such as the choir-esque vocals, piano and strings sections to EMP, mixing it with HI-FI percussion and bass, which opens his music up to a much wider target audience, which opens up new doors into the EMP and pop saturated music industry.

Target Market/Demographic

Typical EMP music is produced for a certain demographic, alluding to the electronic/dance EMP genre and sub-genre. Taku breaches this convention by the way instruments are played. The acoustic, naturalistic way the piano is played, creates a track with groove and realism unlike many electronically produced music.

As the track has ‘pop’ style vocals, pretty much anyone can enjoy this soothing track but as Ta-ku is a known name in the EMP world, the actual demographic is EMP/hip-hop/ listeners.

Cultural Significance

As I said above the song is more of a personal reflection of experience in love so the track doesn’t really have any ‘cultural significance’ per say, but it reflects values with in a relationship such as, loyalty, love and respect.

Para-musical Intent

This track is off Taku’s album Songs To Make Up To. He teams up with Sango and JMSN to convey a powerful ‘I’m sorry’ type message using very warm sounding instruments. By the lyrical content you can deduce that the song is obviously about heart break and trying to re-build a bridge between two peoples relationship.

Aesthetic Quality

Not only is this message shown through the lyrical content, but also the way they are conveyed. The simple stripped back track, clean prominent vocals and choral vocals enhance the mood evoked and give the lyrics more power and emotion. Using a slow tempo of around 78BPM, a stronger emotional connection to all the elements in the track is introduced. Furthermore, the tonal qualities of the piano re-enforces the somber, melancholic message as mentioned above. The song obviously links back to the album title and focus of the album’s theme.

In this track Taku uses organic and synthetic instruments and sounds but only in a synthetic environment. The song has a rich, warm timbre to convey the underlying message. The track denotes a sad mood,  yet is countered with more of a supportive overtone.

Although most EMP music doesn’t have much groove Taku plays and manipulates the instruments in a natural way, giving the listener more relatability to the emotions conveyed by the artists.

Case Study: Ta-Ku- Love Again (Feat. JMSN & Sango)