June 6, 2018 at 7:54 am #3649
The idea of this thread is to have the TYFTH members writing reviews of whatever track they want to write about. The reviews can be 2 sentences long, or 34 page essays — it doesn’t matter. As long as you are voicing your honest opinion in a clear manner, we will all be eager to read it.
In order to have things more organized and looking nicer, I will for example italicize the name of the tracks and use proper paragraphing. But anyone is of course free to write whatever they want, however they want. This will be a truly freeform thread lol. If you enjoy writing huge blocks of text in ALL-CAPS suit yourself, it’s okay and no one is going to mock you for it.
I should add that the purpose of reviewing/criticism consists in elucidating what works and what doesn’t in the reviewed/criticized object, in our opinions, with the ultimate goal of having an effect on future works of present or future artists. This means that reviewing/criticism involves a lot of trashing (or at any rate… my reviews will lol). If you only have glowing words to say about a particular track, it will still be your honest opinion, and therefore valuable, and we will all be interested in reading it. I have for example only glowing words for stuff like Afternoon Owl or Enuma Elish, and rightly so because these are some of the greatest pieces of music ever made.
So let’s get thinking and typing!June 6, 2018 at 8:03 am #3651
Betwixt & Between – Hydra
Hydra is boring until its climax, with some funny vocals on the breakbeat part, a pretty good rise which culminates with a completely out-of-place female vocal, and then there’s a huge melodic climax that comes out of nowhere, with no previous warning, no previous sign whatever pointing to its appearance, and then it’s over. It’s also too short. If Betwixt made it longer and built it up properly it might have been pretty good, as the melodic climax is nice.
June 6, 2018 at 7:57 pm #3654
- This reply was modified 2 years, 1 month ago by bern.
It is fair to say that about Hydra when listening to the track from a stand-alone point, but then, so are most intros. I guess not every composer want to start a track with something harsh like Storm Coming.
However, from a DJ’s point of vue, the boringness of the buildup could be used while mixing a transition, to arrive at the breakdown before the vocal sample and climax.
Ok, my turn. Not exactly freeform, though.
Endlicher Entfernung: A guy want to convince his little sister to have fun together. He succeeds.
That track should have been instrumental only, or at least have had an instrumental version.
I found myself wondering, back then when I was dabbling in mixing, how would you play this live without risking embarrassment to yourself, or offending someone?
The obvious answer is, you can’t. And yet, I found it solid, except for the samples’ bad taste. But if I could remove the voices, how would I fill the quiet parts with?
My favorite part is the first 30 seconds or so, where the melody goes from carefreeness to plain disharmony, then quickly breaking into chaos.
Following-up to whatever stuff @bern said in the Introductions, Endlicher would be a better example of cheesiness in a track than Nothing Compares 2 U, which is a rearrangement of Cirno’s theme, and if you are familiar with the canonical material, you can see for yourself that a dumb, (weak?) fairy is nothing to worry about.
I don’t think it was intended to be serious. But yes, if you like your freeform like you drink your coffee, you should stick to Alek.
The point about imitators is sorta moot, a better question would be: Did <artist X> manage to leave <structure set by innovator> to produce its own sound?
When you are starting to produce, it is normal to try to copy the sounds you like.
Given BTW’s experimentations and work in several music genres, I would say he was looking for his own sound, and that typecasting it into a Alek imitator, even as one of the best, is a bit unfair. And they are worse cases of imitation out there.
The trick is to be inspired by other artists and genres without downright plagiarizing what they do.
June 13, 2018 at 3:08 am #3657
- This reply was modified 2 years, 1 month ago by Jambato.
Lol, is the girl being raped by her brother in that sample from Entfernung? Well. With or without the sample, I don’t like the track. I mean, I guess the first 30 seconds, in which I hear a baby being raped by her brother, probably had an effect on this opinion… though. So maybe, after all, if you took the sample out I might’ve liked it. — I don’t know, because I couldn’t bear listening to it for more than 4 second intervals, meaning that I had to scroll through it as fast I could before turning off the volume for good. Incidentally, I’m always reminded of cartoons and anime when I hear Japanese voice samples, and I don’t watch cartoons, so I’d rather my music kept those samples out. J-core, as whole, is pretty bad. It unfortunately seems the cool Finnish Freeform must be sandwiched right between the base UK Hardcore and the ridiculous Japanese Hardcore. There’s no way around it, because of all the similarities they share. The public that enjoys this kind of music is not discerning enough to differentiate between the three styles, so they lump them all together. Meanwhile, those who can discern and appreciate, however so slightly, the difference in the quality of the music produced by these different scenes and traditions, has to face the problem of the lack of new quality music being made. So the music coming from Finland is not plentiful, and even DJs who can appreciate the superior Finnish music want to, well, DJ, so they have to use whatever other music is coming out — and where they are coming out is from base UK and weird Japan. This is, then, how we get to a DJ wanting to put a little anime lolita being raped by her brother next to such towering masterpieces as Iron Squid.
And, by the way, it’s not like the Japanese aren’t able to make good art. They are. They have produced videogame gold, for example. And the world would be a lot poorer without Japan and its weirdness. That said, I still don’t like shooting spaceships with 12-year old anime girls, nor do I like listening to silly Touhou music made by hermit-like hikikomori whose only life experiences include watching anime and drinking an absurd amount of energy drinks. I think the energy drinks would explain their taste for high BPM. The rest would explain their lack of subtlety and eye for nuance. (And once more explain why cartoon music appearing next to Man Eaten or Invitation doesn’t seem out of place to them.)June 13, 2018 at 3:19 am #3659
1) I understand your point about Hydra being useful to DJs. It makes sense. That said, I’m not a DJ so the only thing I care about is the track that is right in front of me, and I will review it and judge it based on its effect on me while exclusively listening to it. If I was reviewing a DJ set I would comment on the transition, its selection, etc. But when I review the track, the track (and other similar tracks to which I can compare it) are all I care about. And if an amazing track is hard to mix but is a 5/5, I will still defend against a 1/5 easy-to-mix piece of trash track.
2) I have nothing against imitators. I am just calling them by their names. There’s nothing wrong with imitation as long as what you are imitating is good…
June 13, 2018 at 11:58 am #3662
- This reply was modified 2 years ago by bern.
A quick clarification on Endlicher Entfernung because it’s bugging me: it was written for this comp, so it certainly wasn’t made to be presented alongside Iron Squid or even freeform in general, just the other tracks on that CD. There’s a distance between them, even if it’s finite. 😛
November 29, 2018 at 3:48 am #3791
- This reply was modified 1 year, 10 months ago by Sherkel.
Alek Száhala – Enuma Elish
The grand style follows suit with all great passion. It disdains to please, it forgets to persuade. It commands. It wills.
This will be a very preliminary review of Enuma Elish, which I intend to work on over the years as my knowledge of music theory expands. I’m currently busy with much more pressing matters, though, and will remain so for the coming years, so I’ll leave this here for now and you readers can do with it in the meantime whatever you want. This review will be built upon a bunch intuitions that I’ve developed over the years, through a lot of hours spent listening to music, as well as my philosophy study and overall life experiences. I have never formally studied music, so intuition is all I can use for now I’m afraid.
Is Enuma Elish music? The problem that Enuma Elish poses (and before it Afternoon Owl, and before it most of all progressive electronic dance music, and before it Ravel’s Boléro… meaning, then, the entire group of so-called repetitive music) is philosophically relevant. For music simulates feelings, and therefore an order of rank of music will correspond to an order of rank of feelings… which is what philosophy ultimately strives for. The merits of music, as it happens with the merits of all artforms, hinge to a great degree on complexity. Complexity which is, as Kierkegaard explained, one of the principal means towards immersion, the ultimate goal of all art.
But if we are to assume this “repetitive music” is extremely simple, almost downright stupid, composition-wise, then why has it come to dominate mankind’s taste to such an extent? We still all cherish Boléro–even though it was harshly criticized back when it was first played by many composers and critics, and for quite some time after that–and EDM has never been so big, with DJs like David Guetta touring today the entire planet and ratcheting up their net worth to several million dollars. Surely, it must be attaining the immersive effect art strives for even with extremely simple compositions. We could of course redefine what “complexity” means composition- and structure-wise, or maybe even add to the former the dimensions of sound design and production, which are certainly complex and demand a lot of effort from the artists (and are only possible with cutting-edge technological marvels, such as DAWs and synthesizers). Crafting powerful or remotely remarkable sounds is tough, and this is why the guys from Infected Mushroom, for example, are regarded as master craftsmen. Moreover, there’s no denying that a track like IM’s Flamingo is complex, since it is the result of about 320 different channels, i.e. 320 different timbres (–not quite true this statement, but let’s assume it is for the purposes of this line of thought), combined and played together on a time-span of less than 9 minutes. Timbres themselves can of course be ranked according to their expressiveness, which is just another word to denote their relative complexity, and this is why an instrument like a violin is ranked higher than for example a flute (that it is harder for the musician to master it and play it should not affect our final judgement on it, since as critics and receptors of music we only care about the timbre, i.e. the sound, coming out of the instrument). So another appeal of EDM is definitely how it pushes technological advances to their limit and how it consistently delievers unique, strange, novel sounds. Perhaps when our brain is bombarded by such weird stimula, the complexity of the structure of music stops being so important, and the monotony of structural repetition can be thus compensated for with the strange and bizarre, and ultimately more expressive sounds that technological progress offers our artists.
But the idea is that, complex or not, this “repetitive music” is indeed immersive–and I don’t need to look outside my window to see its effect on other people–I can see its effect just fine on my brain, and it’s ultimately on this effect alone that I can base everything I say.
Besides, even though music is an artform, I do not believe it can be evaluated and judged with the same criteria used for visual arts, for these always simulate tangible things. A picture will simulate a cup of coffee, an action movie will simulate a street fight, and the more pixels on the picture the better it will look, just as an action movie from the 60’s is significantly less entertaining than, say, 2002’s The Bourne Identity. Literary arts require their own set of criteria, too, but they use words and these are symbols that refer more or less unilaterally and unambiguously to concrete things. But the sound of a bagpipe or of any of Bach’s fugues do not simulate anything tangible: they simulate feelings. Music uncannily objectifies feelings through sound, and these then proceed to stimulate our feelings, after captured by our ear and interpreted by our brain. So admitting music=feelings, by evaluating music I’d pretty much be evaluating feelings! The criteria used to evaluate music would then have to match at some point and to some degree the criteria used to evaluate feelings—and it’s precisely at this point that music criticism becomes philosophical, and all the criteria that worked in general for all the other artforms must be revised. In short, “complexity” was a very useful concept that practically sufficed to guide us through our judgment of any artform, but with music it might get a bit more complex than that. What are “complex feelings”, anyway?
Of course, every person has his own inclinations and own instincts, and is subject to his own environment, and therefore generally feels a certain set of feelings–and is conditioned to more often feel a certain way–and to prefer to feel a certain way. What will the warrior prefer to feel? And what about the bean-counting shopkeeper? And the little girl? So to each of these we could attempt to correspond some set of feelings, some set of music.
–But this has been a long enough digression from my current goal already–wasn’t this supposed to be a review of Enuma Elish?
Enuma Elish, then, is an extremely repetitive piece of music. It is intentionally repetitive, for you can see Száhala streamlined it (i.e. simplified it, at least in structure) with each available version. Check the HBC podcast from December 2011 and see how the track differs there. First thing coming to my mind, is that I enjoyed the muddled sound of the kick and bass showcased in that version. The final version sounds much cleaner, as all cutting-edge EDM tends to sound with it’s laborious mixing and mastering procedures. But that kick muddled on that bass sounded great. A bit of dirt and smoke and lack of transparency is appreciated once in a while and, barbarians that we are, we certainly like getting our hands dirty, don’t we? I shall return to this in a bit, so keep this dirty kick and bass on your mind.
Besides that, I thought his streamlining was good. At the 38:22 mark on that set, you see that a newer stage emerged on that part, intensifying the feeling of panic to compulsive levels. Száhala opted in the end to scrap it, and I think it was a good decision, because the final version ended up being full 9:46 minutes of length and such an explosion of feeling at that point would have been distasteful. IM’s recent Spitfire also outstandingly simulates panic on its second half and they stopped their climactic rise right at a tasteful point and refrained from delivering an outright explosion of feeling. That’s what being in control in panic-inducing situations feels like. Száhala scrapped the addition of panic altogether in the final version, then, and opted for persistence and endurance of feeling instead. The HBC-set version also featured some interesting nuance: a little twisted timbre going up and down your ears, left and right your speakers that appears at 37:35 on that set. This shows once more that Száhala pruned and trimmed his final version quite possibly to perfectionist levels, and only God knows what other cool tricks he ended up scrapping from his final released version. Once more, though, I agree with its removal, though maintaining it in the final version would certainly not be as offensive as maintaining the previous explosion I mentioned above. It’d make it more nuanced, to be sure… but I don’t think “nuance” is quite the goal here.
Moving to the final TYFTH version for good now, at the 3:35 mark a new stage erupts. This leads at 3:58 to what we eventually find is the goal of the track. This goal, this high-point and maximum of energy is your typical Száhala melody, persisting almost to the point of obsession. Its timbre is amazing… Am I a snake? Am I being snake-charmed? It’s not an euphoric high-point, as he does with Iron Squid’s climax: it is rather a point of relentless mental focus that is reached, a kind of hypnosis finally achieved, and it resembles more Afternoon Owl in that regard than any other of his tracks do, even if it is much more aggressive (Mageslayer is another that I could mention, but since it is nowhere near the level of Afternoon Owl, I would rather not get into it). At this point I have to ask: isn’t hypnosis ultimately the appeal of EDM? Isn’t the hypnotic, relentlessly focused mental state what we’re after when we put Man Eaten playing? And why does Psycho sound so powerful? So whoever says Boléro is not music might be right… but good luck stopping it and all good repetitive non-music like it from fascinating mankind. As for Enuma Elish, it does as it pleases, it commands you to feel it’s melody and it doesn’t give a damn if you can take it… because it will repeat it and shove it down your throat until you can. The melody is over when it wants to be over, and you better get used to it, because it’s not going to stop. Either go along with it and allow it to guide you on the marvels of focused action… or turn it off for good and call it all monotony. I’m sorry to all the “thinkers” who equated “repetitive music” with the death drive… but this is what the most energetic and productive activity sounds like. It’s what being in flow sounds like for the workaholic who for a minute forgets what time and environment are, and uninterruptedly works for 5 hours straight, the outside world be damned. It’s what the boxer feels when throwing the thousandth consecutive punch on the heavy bag while training for his upcoming fight. It’s the sound of unhesitating and unfrightened instinct in the making–and the sound of it actually being made. The welfare-reliant alcoholic looks down on the workaholic’s behavior as “monotonous and boring”, and the fat slob looks down on the world boxing champion’s training as “monotonous and boring” too (that’s what Jim Lampley said of Lomachenko’s superhuman training regime: that it was tedious). But what do the objections of these weaklings mean to us? The boxing analogy is specially on target here, because boxers train for three minutes straight distributed between one minute intervals, and Enuma Elish at 06:07 also happens to possess an interval whereby it slow downs to a full stop. As if it knew that successful instinct creation requires some rest time inbetween action. It’s unconscious genius perhaps, but it’s truth that is being aurally expressed by Száhala. Finally, after the rise, the goal is completed–the task is over: the instinct is created and the melody erupts for a final round with its full power.
Then, the gradual decrease in intensity of feeling, the cool down. The stage starting at 8:50 is particularly good due to that stunning twisted timbre. Száhala shows here, as he did with Afternoon Owl, the aural architect that he is.
However, my praise is not universal and there are indeed things I’d like to see changed:
1) The final loop of the melody, starting at 07:17, should have some added layers on it to increase its power just a tiny bit more. This would reinforce the instinct-creation meaning I laid above in a subtle, but effective manner. As it is now, it sides too much on the side of boring repetition. I’m not saying Száhala should go overboard and deliver an Iron Squid-like climax, and thus change the melody. I’m saying keep the melody, but add a little bit more power and expressiveness to it. See what IM does at 06:53 in Heavyweight? They add another layer to the climax and it worked phenomenally. Again, I just want a tiny bit more power, something that showcases some progress after that full stop.
2) The robotic flatulence at 08:56 as to be edited out. It’s ridiculous and rudely destroys the immersion. And if I am to remember Száhala’s comprehensive tracklist, it wouldn’t surprise me if that was actual sampled flatulence.
3) The transition to the final breakdown at 06:04 can be done better. The movement from full-on power to total breakdown doesn’t sound 100% logical here. It’s easily fixable: just add some drum roll and increase the tempo of the percussion and have the music mini-explode before the breakdown. As it is now it just sounds copy-pasted.
4) Put the muddled kick and bass I mentioned above back, but only on the first loop of track. Make it sound that the music gets cleaner as it progresses and advances. That’d work as another metaphor to the instinct-creation meaning I mentioned, too, and ultimately to all power, since the clearer and more transparent and more organized a thing or process becomes the stronger it is.
And—finally—the question must be asked, for it’s time someone asked it. Why is this virile music coming from Finland of all places? But tell me, friends, where are there virile countries anymore? Aren’t the Finns our contemporary cultural barbarians?
The noble caste was in the beginning always the barbarian caste: their superiority lay, not in their physical strength, but primarily in their psychical—they were more complete human beings (which, on every level, also means as much as “more complete beasts”—).
November 29, 2018 at 4:05 am #3794
- This reply was modified 1 year, 7 months ago by bern.
- This reply was modified 1 year, 7 months ago by bern.
- This reply was modified 1 year, 7 months ago by bern.
- This reply was modified 1 year, 7 months ago by bern.
- This reply was modified 1 year, 6 months ago by bern. Reason: typos + added explanations
lol, am I becoming a writer or whatNovember 30, 2018 at 7:17 pm #3797
And—finally—the question must be asked, for it’s time someone asked it.
Why is this virile music coming from Finland of all places?
Pearsall: Do you think the high bpm’s of your tracks put you in touch spiritually with your Viking ancestors?
Teemu: (laughing) Ok, the speed of our tracks is just because there is a seven month winter here and it’s so freaking cold and dark. It’s really dark so when we have parties we have to dance really fast to get ourselves warm. Everyone is so fucking pissed off that they are so cold they have to dance fast to get warm. It’s kind of a formation of mind, you know, you get a clear mind when you are dancing so fast, so furious.
But tell me, friends, where are there virile countries anymore?
If by that, you meant, countries producing that hard and fast, sad and angry sort of music we are all so fond of,
maybe we should turn back in time, to the 90’s European raving scene, where most inspiration for
freeform can be found (hardcore breakbeat, german/UK hard trance, happy hardcore, acid techno, hard house, gabber).
Among those countries, you can enumerate the UK, Germany, France, Italy, Belgium, the Netherlands.
Japan came later, notable still despite not being in Europe.
But I think that as time goes forward, life gets in the way, in a good or bad manner, priorities are reassessed, and people
move on with the times. The niche nature of all of this, seemed to have been worthwhile, as the DJ’s and
producers did what they liked, for themselves, the music, the people and the scene.
How to regain that today? We may not be able to, but it is interesting for any freeform aficionado to ponder that.
Aren’t the Finns our contemporary cultural barbarians?
Which part of culture specifically are you talking about here? The climate? The introversion? The spirit of sisu?December 1, 2018 at 3:27 am #3798
If by that, you meant, […]
I meant that most countries today are not virile. This is because industrial, peaceable societies in which war has been practically abolished become more feminine. (Of course every country still has an army and military culture differs immensely from civilian culture, but the fact remains that demographically, i.e. in numbers, civilian culture is reigning supreme and we are all, soldiers and civilians included, deeply immersed in it.)
It’s a snarky remark not to be taken too seriously: a verbal shot at all civilized men reading me. And I wanted to contrapose “virility” with “barbarian” and then with “noble”.
Also, I say the Finns, and really every other country that is not the USA, Germany, France, Italy or Greece, are culturally barbaric… because they are. In my country, for example, instead of studying and cherishing Montaigne (a Frenchman) we study and cherish some national nobody merely because he happened to be born on the same piece of land than us. This emphasis on national culture makes my country barbaric too, because the best culture on the planet was produced in the countries I mentioned above, not on mine.
I guess my writing could’ve been clearer there. It’s seems I imply the Finns are the ONLY cultural barbarians, but that’s not my intention. I will change it to “Aren’t the Finns among [the best of] our contemporary cultural barbarians?”.
Which part of culture specifically are you talking about here? The climate? The introversion? The spirit of sisu?
Already answered that above, but I loved that you mentioned this “sisu” concept. I’d never heard of it before, and after reading the wikipedia article on it it really is amazing how it captures the stuff I was trying to convey on the review, lol. I’m going to have to add this concept there somewhere, somehow.December 1, 2018 at 3:34 am #3799
It’s also funny calling the Finns “barbarians” when they consistently rank among the most civilized countries on the planet today, so there’s also that added irony. It’s ultimately a serious point (because they are culturally barbaric as I explained), but there’s certainly a funny element in there, and I hope it made you smile with it. 🙂December 1, 2018 at 4:40 am #3800
I am sorry, but in an attempt at clarifying your thought (I wanted to assume you used the word ‘virile’ in a secondary meaning, not related to the state of masculinity and post-modern society today. But no socio-commentary digression here.), are you using the word barbaric to convey a sense of non-preeminence, as compared to other countries’ cultural standing, not inferiority?
Because if taken literally, which I usually do, culturally-wise, a look at their library culture, the Kalevala, sisu, their landscapes (and saunas!) proves that it is not the case.
I don’t think you meant to expose some sort of cultural inferiority, or at least a perceived one, as opposed to an actual one.
However, don’t get me started on salmiakki licorice. Like, pardon me the use of that word (to be taken humorously), that is degenerate taste.December 2, 2018 at 3:45 am #3801
This subject is only marginally concerned with my review and therefore with this topic, so I’d rather not get into it. I’m aware nationalism is an extremely sensitive subject to the vast majority of the people on the planet (even though we are all now living in the freaking 21st century), so I’ll end my thought at that point and you can interpret it however you want.December 4, 2018 at 7:57 pm #3802
Your review reads much more like a series of essays on various topics than just thoughts on Enuma Elish, but that’s certainly not a bad thing. Develop each of those ideas more and you could have a long series of pieces on the hidden meanings in Finnish freeform, all centered around a single track at that! Being strictly anti-review myself it was pleasingly thought-provoking.
It’s also cool to hear you’re interested in learning more about how music works, and if this is one of your means toward that then I’m all for it. I can think of a few points off the top of my head.
Ziggurat, Afternoon Owl, and Maruuk, for instance, all make heavy use of the blues scale. Compare to Last Window’s Sorrowful Nightfall or Insomnia, or for a really close comparison, Telefang’s Bryon Ruins. You’ll be amazed! Personally I’m often afraid to use this scale out of fear I’m treading on some holy ground at the wrong time, for a lack of a better way to explain it.
There are a lot more tricks he employs that you’ve no doubt noticed and that I couldn’t explain any better than you. Using and repeating a melody that “feels” like it should be longer, for instance…it all conveys a sense of “where the heck am I?”, and as an Australian living in Finland with an inescapable obsession on a long-dead civilization, that’s no surprise. I really look forward to understanding those techniques more…all I know comes from ripping MIDIs from games, as no amount of printed material or videos ever explained these things to me in a way I could understand…
Unicorn Grove and Firecloud get a lot of their power from sudden modulations, which is why I suspect they’re two of your least favorites. I’ve always considered that sort of thing intrinsically tragic, with exceptions of course, so it’s interesting to see someone feel the opposite way. Maybe cathartic is a better word for what I mean… To me, so-called “logic” in music is cowardice. What else can you call it when someone’s unwilling to leave the same place or experience something new even after becoming bored of where they are? Always be ready and always make your first priority be making the place you are your own, I say.
Having effectively reviewed nearly every track in the scene with that, I’ll spare you the rest of this “review of a review” before my Hebrew side takes over. Now, with interest, that comes to five million Euros, plus tax!December 4, 2018 at 8:02 pm #3803
And one more thing I forgot, because I’m afraid to edit that:
“Good news! You can make freeform even if you can’t eat salmiakki. But salmiakki is really good!” ~ Hyphen
Just look at what salmiakki did for Firecloud! Without even knowing about music, just follow its tonal center due to how distinct each section is (for me this takes away a lot from the enjoyment, but only for one partial listen). To start off, he introduces an awesome (but simple) part based on E, and then soon after, a more complex one based on G. Nothing too surprising until…what other producer would do the jump at 1:50?! And then follow it up with all the ensuing theatrics, going to far as to suggesting that cool opening section was meant to represent the “fool” archetype? It would be amazing if Alek did that more, or anyone else on that note. The rest proceeds from there, in completely different territory, until the G-centered section self-consciously waits for the right time to say “hey, can I come back now?” and the close-enough F one is like “sure, let’s see what you can do,” but then it gets stuck, and as it quiets down to try and get a grip on itself, the previous one is like “nope, you clearly have no clue what we’re trying to get done here!” and then pushes it out once and for all to finish the tune, paying brief tribute to the single-note intro, but in a kind of mocking way by virtue of being a semitone above it. At the same time it could be seen as “hey, I’ll never pretend to understand what the heck you are or why you’re here, but you helped me get this far, so thanks!” Who am I to say? And all that said, what of the mysterious, initially jarring D# section that changed it all? The “king” one made a more intimate address to it, but didn’t overall pay it much mind or let it take the stand. Instead, it ends with the usurper and his likely annoying acquaintance. To Alek, was that fate? Considering the reprise of the first section follows the “king’s” key and even gets more than one repeating note at the end, could the “fool” have gained wisdom from witnessing this conflict and living by taking the winning side? Again…*bites into Tootsie Roll Pop standing on top of a hill* the world may never know.
There is a logic to it, as with all art, just not the kind that lets it get away with hackneyed techniques, and this off-the-cuff interpretation is one of infinitely many.
To clarify, when I say the name of a note, I mean “some minor-ish scale based on this note”. My ears aren’t good enough for more yet. Nor is this intended to be a review of the track, because in the end…I just don’t enjoy listening to it as much as other ones! I simply think it’s one of the most simultaneously clever and heartfelt tracks in the scene, and whether the “idiot -> previous king -> fate -> revolutionary -> previous king -> (revolutionary + fate + idiot) = new king (standing next to a smarter guy than at the start)” narrative is intentional or not (I doubt it is), it sets the groundwork for it through its use of modulations.
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