"Þungir Straumar" (Progressive Death Metal with AmpliTube 5)

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"Þungir Straumar" (Progressive Death Metal with AmpliTube 5)

Postby carlaz » Fri Nov 12, 2021 4:13 pm

Here's a demo for a "progressive death metal" piece:


I am a raging Amorphis fanboy :lol: but I've never tried to actually record a death-metal-type piece before. (Classic hard-rock/stoner rock/proto-metal is more my comfort zone!) I took a different approach in AmpliTube, also.

Rhythm guitars are quad tracked. There are two "wider" tracks that use the VHandcraft 4 for a more contemporary metal tone, and then two slightly "wide but closer to the center" tracks that are mostly the Metal Distortion 2 (of course!) through a clean amp (the SJ50, I think, though I am not sure it matters much!). The lead guitar uses the Orange Rockerverb 50 (with the SSTE delay stomp before the amp). I don't usually use IRs much, but, for this, I decided to take advantage of AT5's IR-loader to use 3rd-party IRs from a Swedish producer well-known for his work with metal bands. :mrgreen: There are different IRs for the two types of rhythm-guitar tracks ("normal" and "chainsaw" :lol: ) and for the lead guitar.

The bass signal is largely split between clean (and aggressively smashed!) low-end and distorted high-end. For the distortion, I used the MiniPlex 20, though again run into the AmpliTube IR-loader with a 3rd-party IR from a Finnish-based (of course!) maker of metal-oriented IRs, plugins, and suchlike.

There is a fair amount of post-processing on both guitars and bass (and everything else!); by no means am I exclusively using IKM plugins, though some T-RackS EQs and compressors are in there. As usual for me, T-RackS Stealth Limiter is the last thing on the stereo bus. 8-)

Keyboards and synth choirs are all done with Logic Pro's synths and Sampler; drums are done with Logic Pro's "Drummer" feature, plus some hand-programming of certain parts and the use of some third-party samples.

The lyrics are all in Old Norse, basically cribbed from the medieval poem "Vǫluspá". I did my best to give them a reconstructed medieval (instead of Modern Icelandic) pronunciation. I am sure actual medieval Scandinavians would find my accent laughable :lol: but, luckily, there are not too many of them around! ;) The verse lyrics are all performed in "Cookie Monster" style anyway. :lol:
--
"Lords of rock ... grace us with your mighty love ...."
http://soundcloud.com/carledlundanderson
https://carledlundanderson.bandcamp.com/
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Re: "Þungir Straumar" (Progressive Death Metal with AmpliTub

Postby mklankin@hotmail.com » Fri Nov 19, 2021 1:59 am

Ok Carlaz,

Stop it - what a thematic, creative onslaught! Can’t say I’m familiar with Amorphis but if this an homage to them, then they must kick ass, I am a fan of progressive sh*t however and this hits the mark. I’m assuming you don’t speak that language naturally so kudos to you for going beyond, man.

Again, great mix, great playing and love the instrumentation used….as well as cookie monster!

Please keep sharing!
Michael
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Re: "Þungir Straumar" (Progressive Death Metal with AmpliTub

Postby carlaz » Fri Nov 19, 2021 8:47 pm

Thanks for the kind words! :D

Yeah, I like some progressive sh*t myself -- Jethro Tull is really one of my favorite bands, and Martin Barre one of my favorite guitarists. Anyway, Amorphis emerged from the original Scandinavian death-metal scene of the early 1990s, and their Tales from the Thousand Lakes album is probably a bit of a classic of prog-death-metal from that period. I think they possibly lost their way a bit at the turn of the millennium -- they were perhaps listening to too much Pink Floyd :lol: and getting a bit vague-alt-rock -- but then they stormed back in the late '00s and, IMO, have been kicking *ss ever since. Though I actually now think of them as a prog band that happens to have death-metal stylings rather than a death-metal band with prog influences. Anyway, one can readily check out Amorphis on YouTube and streaming services. There'll be a new album coming out early next year.

Actually, this is even AmpliTube-relevant, since I heard about AmpliTube from one of Amorphis's guitar techs who was active on the forum they used to have on their website. 8-) He was very keen on AmpliTube and the fact that you could cherry-pick gear from the then-new Custom Shop that was launched around the time of AmpliTube 3.5 (this must have been about 2011?). So, that was good enough for me! I became an AmpliTube user. :mrgreen:

And, yeah, I don't think anyone is a native-speaker of 13th-century Norse (unless they also found the fountain of youth!), but I teach occasional classes on that for an online university, and the idea for the song came out of that. I don't have a high-enough vocal range to do justice to clean vocals for this kind of thing (like the guy in Týr or something), but I figured, "How hard can it be to do a death-metal Cookie Monster?" (Well ... harder than I expected, actually ... but at least it was within my range! :lol: )

I have to confess that I originally composed the song with MIDI, and then completely stalled on recording real instruments for several years because I'd written parts that were beyond my skill level as a player! :shock: Even the rhythm parts for the verses have chuggy little runs that were defeating me. I'm sure proper musicians could play them without blinking -- but I'm not a proper musician! :P I had to do loads of takes, and then my old computer was getting crushed by the demands of my DAW ..... So I finally got a new computer this year, and then finally got around to tracking. I think I spent most of a day recording versions of the lead guitar parts -- and then most of another day sifting through them, trying to find the bits that sucked least so I could stitch them together. :? But the magic of technology helps even me get slightly closer to sounding competent. :lol:
--
"Lords of rock ... grace us with your mighty love ...."
http://soundcloud.com/carledlundanderson
https://carledlundanderson.bandcamp.com/
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Re: "Þungir Straumar" (Progressive Death Metal with AmpliTub

Postby mklankin@hotmail.com » Fri Nov 19, 2021 10:52 pm

Well, gotta say all that all your effort, the kind I bet we all put in to varying degrees for the things we share here and elsewhere, paid off big time!

Excellent stuff!
Michael
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