LOST IN ME A CRITIQUE

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The track Lost in Me (Own Worst Enemy) was written as part of a brief for the PMP module.

The aim was to write a personal brief and work to that criteria. My challenge was to focus closely on structure and I used 3 key pieces of Luciano Berrio's 3rd Movement from Sinfonia started me thinking about structure and form of spiralling dynamics within songs. The expression of a song is not a fixed static state and just as the person writing it changes their opinion and mood, it was important for this particular work to reflect the natural rises and slumps witnessed throughout the writing process. This piece was written on an acoustic guitar with an A B A B C A C structure meaning it followed a straightforward rise and build. However taking inspiration from the Sinfonia movement I felt it would be more powerful to toy with the listener and elongate the drops and rises therefore prolonging the songs climax till the last moment and having the end as a slight drift. This meant lost in me developed into a A B C D E F A B C D E F E structure.

Pace was essential to keep the track steadying on and engage the listener as the faster manic parts help contrast against the slower reflective parts. Within Sinfonia there is a distinct male voice that spurs the pace of the piece by repeating a spoken phrase. As Lost in Me is an internalised conversation, all the vocal parts had to be female and worked best with one voice. The theme is the concept of being lost in your own thoughts and ideas and how there tragedy and conflict can form for a single human being in their mind.

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Thematically Lost in Me draws influence from Simon Schuberts artwork Madam. The initial idea for this song was to have two dual narratives reflecting the two female presences in Madam, however it seemed more effective to have a solid lead vocal portraying the prominent female character whereas the opposing vocals drop in and out giving the impression of mystery. The other vocals are distorted and in some cases nothing more than a Whisper and this leads the listener to question whether it is real or not. The same query is led by the female character within the songs narrative as the lyrics tell us she is struggling to define reality and conflicts against the miscellaneous vocal parts. Musically the combination of sullen strings and delicate acoustic guitar are often contrasted against a ramble of distorted vocals, guitar and drums again forming a varied song structure and showing conflicting ideals like the ones held in the narrative. Though essentially the parts follow the structure as previously described the unique musical aspect of Lost in Me is that no two parts are the same. So while the verse repeats, the cello forms two harmonising ascending parts building the song towards the climax. To keep the raw feel the track was re recorded without a click and then Built upon. While this may seem a careless choice it adds an uneasy, staggering to parts of the song which compliments the nature of the words and the theme surrounding the troubled female character. Rather than the click timing which posed unwelcome restrictions, the free time recording allowed the track to push the pace on the listener creating an intentional uncomfortable feel. There are obvious influences drawn from Joanna Newsom and Kate Bush and a variety of sound board instruments were used in the recording including a fridge magnet which forms the intro noise to the track.

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Have a listen or purchase here for just £1! Must be played loud! http://born-by-wires.bandcamp.com/ Keep Smiling :) Sarah-Beth xx

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