Thursday, April 16, 2009


Hey Hey Hey...

Just a note to say that Isaac's show Monday night rocked. Really good stuff, so if he's coming to a town near you check him out. He also mentioned that he's got some plans for cross posts between here and his blog while he's on the road. So look for that coming soon.

Other than that a have a small Turble music update. I've been having more fun that I thought doing this chiptune style music. Now I know, it's not real chiptune because I'm not composing on a gameboy, but I've been trying to impose the same limitations to the music as if I was. And ultimately, I think those limitations are what the style's all about.

For instance, so much electronic music involves the creation and shaping of complex sounds and timbres. However with chiptune, you can choose a square wave or a triangle wave, maybe add some quantized noise. I'm finding this limitation forces me to focus on the melody and harmony aspects of the music and play a lot with consonance and dissonance. It forces you to make the music interesting before you start to focus on the sounds, and that's a nice reminder I'll try to take with me to writing all kinds of music.

At any rate, here's the update.

I mostly just added a transition to a second theme. The final output of this is going to have to be short loops that repeat because the length of time it plays for is going to be dependent on where you are in the level. Right now, while Mark and Dan are focusing on the game itself I'm just trying to get a couple different themes together than we can loop in the background and maybe some transitions between them as well. This repeating of short loops can have the tendency to make the music monotonous, but I think I have some tricks up my sleeve that will make it more interesting while you're playing the game.


Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Show at Sidewalk Tonight

Just a note to say that my brother Isaac Gillespie is kicking off a month long tour with a show at the Sidewalk Cafe tonight at 11. If you're going, see you there.


Saturday, April 11, 2009

New Author...

Hey Folks,

When I started MicroSong, the concept was to publish the process of writing a song by sharing with you the results of each step of song writing process and in doing so hopefully start a discussion about the process of song writing. Part of the way I've wanted to do that is by bringing in some songwriters that I know and having them share with you their process as well as my own.

Well I want to let you know that here at MicroSong we don't discriminate* and song writing isn't the art who's process is worth exploring. To celebrate that we're adding another author.

As I mentioned in the last post, my good friend Mark Marianelli is working on a flash game called Turble, and publishing it in a similar manner to the MicroSong concept and he wants to share some of the process of that games development here with us. He's also a very good cartoonist and may be sharing some of that with us as well. So, welcome Mark.


*like Big Pun, we regulate every shade of the ass

Friday, April 3, 2009

Nintendo Stylee

So the lovely and talented Mark Marianelli (AKA MWizzle, MCM, DJ Marky Mark, Merry Markolous the Markonious One) over at 6AM Comics is working on a flash game called Turble and publishing it using a similar concept to microsong, putting up the pieces as he go's along. When we were talking the other day he asked me to write some music for it and I said, "obiviously."

The game itself is an old school Nintendo style side scroller. You can jump and shoot at baddies and the pieces he has up so far are very fun to play.

The NES style of gameplay inspired me to think write some of the 8 bit/chiptune style music that's so popular with all the kids and this is what I came up with after about a half an hour:

As I tend to do with concepts, this is all done in Reason. It really makes a great sketch pad for coming up with ideas. In fact, this one is so simple I made everything using built in Reason components with no external samples so I'll post the .rnp file up here as well if anyone wants to check it out and play with it. All the percussion and the main bass line are SubTractor synths run through Scream distortion modules set to digital and tuned for fair amounts of aliasing and bit reductions. The two melody lines are NN19 samplers(for extra aliasing) just playing square waves.

I think as the track progresses I'll break out of the pure chiptune style for some more fun effects (after all it is 2009). However, for now I wanted to go Crazy Nintendo Stylee.



Mark's got a post over there on his blog with an earlier version of the track that I sent him as well as some new badguys he's drawn up. Find it here.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Internet Is Back


Well, the move went well. The good folks at Time Warner have come by and turned the internet back on. And I I've moved from Pink Floyd to Tool, not a long journey through the lexicon of recorded music, but there we are.

We've got all the furniture assembled, and in the meantime we're just unpacking things and setting up. I expect to have to studio fully operational again this weekend and hopefully start in on some new tunes.


Friday, March 20, 2009

Pink Floyd and Boxes


The move is coming along, the studio is entirely dismantled and strewn between 2 different apartments, and there is no new music. That being said, I don't have much else to say, but I am listening to some crazy crazy Pink Floyd and suggest you do the same.

The big moving day is tomorrow, so the next post will likely come from the new apartment.

Till Later,

Monday, March 16, 2009


Hey Guys,

Just a quick note to celebrate the shipping of PitchFactor. I'm excited because I think this is a great pedal that does a lot of things that nothing else does. Anyway, they're shipping out the door so if you've ordered one expect to be getting it in the next couple of weeks.

Eventide PitchFactor