MATRIXSYNTH: Matrixbrute: IT FOLLOWS ("Playpen")

Thursday, August 02, 2018

Matrixbrute: IT FOLLOWS ("Playpen")


Published on Aug 2, 2018 Kris Lennox

"Try with cans on for the bass etc. Brilliant soundtrack. The included is an arrangement of the track 'Playpen'. It is a little-known track from the soundtrack - but is fantastic. You can find it here - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=doi8BvqRvSI

The dial you can see me turning near the top RH corner - this is the fine-tune. The pitch of the work drifts through a semitone whilst the patterns change. Therefore, this work is in fact microtonal. Or rather, it is microtonally drifting. It gives a very odd and unique effect. Great stuff.

On the original the pitch dive is VST automated - but personally I prefer hands-on. Plus - as you'll see from the video - I'm diving the pitch to reach the lowest point on a specific bar, then raising it again to a specific bar. However, this means the transitioning pitches are never at the same rate across parts i.e. I can't exactly dive with perfect synchronicity on each part. Personally, I think this gives the music even more oddness, and brings the sense of the pitch dive to life more than a standard 'all dive the same' - which is the result of VST automation. Of course, different rates can be programmed on a computer - and this is easier to fix than having to redo an entire take - but as a player I enjoy sitting at an instrument far more than sitting at a screen. There's a time and place for both - but give me the choice and I'd choose being at an instrument.

A few years ago I did some solo piano arrangements of Rich's work. Two of them I put up here on YT. For anyone interested, here are links - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=geHdQankRpQ

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GSjNN24BR5g

For the curious - the piano on those videos is a Kawai.

Rich put the scores up on his website - they should still be there if anyone is looking to try the arrangements.

He was actually meant to have a piano album release of his music. I think it was a Mexican pianist who was doing the recording gig. But I don't know if it ever came to, as he was also working on a few movie and game scores.

Over the coming weeks I'll probably put up a few other pieces by Rich. He's certainly one of the more interesting composers out there. And the It Follows soundtrack is probably one of my favourite soundtracks in recent years.

PS isn't the bass one the MB just thunderous! I actually think the bass on this arrangement sounds better than the bass on the original. The other parts on the original sound stunning - but the bass tone here is great.

Of the synths I own, I always come back to the MB. I've been neglecting it the past week. I've heard it calling me :)

PPS I didn't add the percussion part from the original as there would have been nowhere to put it on the screen! I like to do vids whereby the viewer can see everything that is being done, rather than something happening 'off-stage'. I could have recorded it and faded the overdub video parts on top of one of the video parts, but I'm stupid and didn't think of that until after the fact. :)

There were also a few other things I'd have changed slightly, but I had a spare 30 minutes and decided to make the most of it by recording this. 30 mins can easily be spent just crafting a single sound, but given the included is just some fun, it does the job."

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