Encyclopaedia Metallum: The Metal Archives

Message board

* FAQ    * Search   * Register   * Login 



Reply to topic
Author Message Previous topic | Next topic
boduus
Metal newbie

Joined: Tue Feb 19, 2013 5:32 am
Posts: 32
PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2013 2:11 pm 
 

I'm currently trying to write an EP and just need to finish one song. I don't have any idea of what to write. What is a good chord progression for atmospheric black metal in the style of Wolves in the Throne Room and Sun Worship? The song is in E minor.

Top
 Profile  
Ilwhyan
Metel fraek

Joined: Sat Sep 29, 2007 1:41 pm
Posts: 6523
Location: Finland
PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2013 6:12 pm 
 

You want to write a song that badly even though you can't even come up with a song progression anymore?
_________________
"Behold, wizard, for the last time how the sun looks, for henceforth you will watch it with empty sockets!"
Illusions Dead - death/black metal

Top
 Profile  
Grave_Wyrm
Metalhead

Joined: Sun Mar 04, 2012 5:55 pm
Posts: 2211
Location: At the bottom of the lake
PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2013 8:03 pm 
 

You need to reverse engineer the EP to find this riff. We can't help you.

edit: actually, better advice would probably be, "have a beer and come back to it later."
_________________
TheStormIRide wrote:
Strange whistling vocals in human monster? Color me intrigued.

Top
 Profile  
CorpseFister
Metalhead

Joined: Mon Apr 21, 2008 2:07 pm
Posts: 1966
Location: Canada
PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2013 9:13 pm 
 

Eb, Bsus4, G7. This is the best chord progression for atmospheric black metal. Just don't share it with too many people.

Top
 Profile  
Apteronotus
Metalhead

Joined: Thu Jun 18, 2009 9:07 am
Posts: 855
PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2013 11:24 pm 
 

Good and bad chord progressions are a matter of taste, and coming up with the progressions is the songwriter's responsibility. You have unlimited freedom in your hands. No one can tell you what to write or do it for you, but maybe helping you understand how some bands sound a certain way will help give you some ideas.

While I am not terribly familiar with the bands you mentioned, atmospheric black metal often layers melodies on top of power chords. To emulate that, you can try splitting up recording chords and melody, tremolo picking both like you always hear in black metal or go for big extended chord shapes. Wolves in the Throne Room use a lot of oblique motion which is common in atmospheric black metal. In English, that can mean changing only one note at a time in a chord or by layering a melody on top of a chord that doesn't change immediately with that melody.

Since you wrote the song in key, try thinking out all the chords you know that are in E minor, then think of the notes in that key and how you can add them to those chords to make new chords or try chord inversions. Consider how going out of key momentarily sounds. You can always build up a progression to change into a new key signature, you can abandon writing in key, you can record yourself urinating.

Try everything and see what you like. If you can't figure out how your influences are getting certain sounds explore tabs of their music until you get a better grasp of how things work out. Good luck!

Top
 Profile  
boduus
Metal newbie

Joined: Tue Feb 19, 2013 5:32 am
Posts: 32
PostPosted: Tue Mar 05, 2013 8:21 am 
 

Ilwhyan wrote:
You want to write a song that badly even though you can't even come up with a song progression anymore?



The thing is, i`m half way through with the song - its around 3 min long. The problem is, I am stuck and can`t finish it and i have a deadline to finish it.

Top
 Profile  
boduus
Metal newbie

Joined: Tue Feb 19, 2013 5:32 am
Posts: 32
PostPosted: Tue Mar 05, 2013 8:22 am 
 

Apteronotus wrote:
Good and bad chord progressions are a matter of taste, and coming up with the progressions is the songwriter's responsibility. You have unlimited freedom in your hands. No one can tell you what to write or do it for you, but maybe helping you understand how some bands sound a certain way will help give you some ideas.

While I am not terribly familiar with the bands you mentioned, atmospheric black metal often layers melodies on top of power chords. To emulate that, you can try splitting up recording chords and melody, tremolo picking both like you always hear in black metal or go for big extended chord shapes. Wolves in the Throne Room use a lot of oblique motion which is common in atmospheric black metal. In English, that can mean changing only one note at a time in a chord or by layering a melody on top of a chord that doesn't change immediately with that melody.

Since you wrote the song in key, try thinking out all the chords you know that are in E minor, then think of the notes in that key and how you can add them to those chords to make new chords or try chord inversions. Consider how going out of key momentarily sounds. You can always build up a progression to change into a new key signature, you can abandon writing in key, you can record yourself urinating.

Try everything and see what you like. If you can't figure out how your influences are getting certain sounds explore tabs of their music until you get a better grasp of how things work out. Good luck!



Thanks a lot! This helped me very much!

Top
 Profile  
boduus
Metal newbie

Joined: Tue Feb 19, 2013 5:32 am
Posts: 32
PostPosted: Tue Mar 05, 2013 8:24 am 
 

CorpseFister wrote:
Eb, Bsus4, G7. This is the best chord progression for atmospheric black metal. Just don't share it with too many people.



Really helpful! You gave me a few good ideas! :)

Top
 Profile  
boduus
Metal newbie

Joined: Tue Feb 19, 2013 5:32 am
Posts: 32
PostPosted: Tue Mar 05, 2013 8:27 am 
 

Grave_Wyrm wrote:
You need to reverse engineer the EP to find this riff. We can't help you.

edit: actually, better advice would probably be, "have a beer and come back to it later."



What do you mean with "Reverse engineer the EP"?
Anyway, i had my beer(s).

Top
 Profile  
Grave_Wyrm
Metalhead

Joined: Sun Mar 04, 2012 5:55 pm
Posts: 2211
Location: At the bottom of the lake
PostPosted: Tue Mar 05, 2013 12:24 pm 
 

Make sure you give Corpsefister liner note credit for helping you finish.
_________________
TheStormIRide wrote:
Strange whistling vocals in human monster? Color me intrigued.

Top
 Profile  
Metallumz
Metal newbie

Joined: Mon Jan 31, 2011 2:02 pm
Posts: 145
Location: United Kingdom
PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2013 1:20 pm 
 

For my own project (Evilasinatas) I spend a few minutes playing and memorising some TABs, just simple changeovers at a fast pace. I then record and use WavePad to slow the song down to a more atmospheric pace and i'm then able to incorporate a slight 0.36s echo as reverb and insert a mid-pace drum track or whatever takes my fancy.

Any idiot can record atmospheric black metal, but it takes a certain skill to be in that mindset of knowing what you (and the listener) wants to hear.

Top
 Profile  
CorpseFister
Metalhead

Joined: Mon Apr 21, 2008 2:07 pm
Posts: 1966
Location: Canada
PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2013 3:59 pm 
 

Why wouldn't you just record at the tempo you intend the song to be?

Top
 Profile  
Inspector_Satan
Metalhead

Joined: Fri Apr 01, 2011 11:48 pm
Posts: 568
Location: Living in the cosmic nod
PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2013 4:39 pm 
 

Seriously, you don't hear about bands slowing down in post too often :scratch:

Top
 Profile  
Ilwhyan
Metel fraek

Joined: Sat Sep 29, 2007 1:41 pm
Posts: 6523
Location: Finland
PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2013 4:43 pm 
 

Playing something relatively simple becomes considerably harder when tempo is lowered. Pulling something off technically is obviously harder the faster the tempo is, but inaccuracy becomes remarkably more noticeable when tempo is lowered. Try recording yourself play something in a very slow tempo over a click track or a drum track, and you'll probably notice how much harder it is to make it sound good.
_________________
"Behold, wizard, for the last time how the sun looks, for henceforth you will watch it with empty sockets!"
Illusions Dead - death/black metal

Top
 Profile  
Metallumz
Metal newbie

Joined: Mon Jan 31, 2011 2:02 pm
Posts: 145
Location: United Kingdom
PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2013 4:58 pm 
 

Inspector_Satan wrote:
Seriously, you don't hear about bands slowing down in post too often :scratch:


Because it saves repeating the same chords over and over again aswell as giving room for a little experimentation between without having to worry about changeovers. It's a lazy way to play fast riffs then slowed down to a near crawl, but with reverb and effects it's worked for me personally.

Ilwhyan has put it into better words, another advantage of this post-editing is if you make a mistake instead of having to repeat the same 12x min song (often in my case) you can simply edit that section out and paste a similar in it's place using something like WavePad or Audacity.

Top
 Profile  
CorpseFister
Metalhead

Joined: Mon Apr 21, 2008 2:07 pm
Posts: 1966
Location: Canada
PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2013 5:09 pm 
 

Huh, well what whatever works for you! It's definitely something different.

Ilwhyan wrote:
Playing something relatively simple becomes considerably harder when tempo is lowered. Pulling something off technically is obviously harder the faster the tempo is, but inaccuracy becomes remarkably more noticeable when tempo is lowered. Try recording yourself play something in a very slow tempo over a click track or a drum track, and you'll probably notice how much harder it is to make it sound good.


Yeah, I've found trying to play drums at funeral doom tempos very difficult. Recording yourself at a higher tempo and then slowing it don't wouldn't help with that though, would it? If you recorded something at 140 and slowed it down to 70, then a 25ms error would become a 50ms error.

Top
 Profile  
Grave_Wyrm
Metalhead

Joined: Sun Mar 04, 2012 5:55 pm
Posts: 2211
Location: At the bottom of the lake
PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2013 10:39 pm 
 

I'd say just set the metronome at the rate you want the song to be and then practice. It's an oldie, but a goodie.
_________________
TheStormIRide wrote:
Strange whistling vocals in human monster? Color me intrigued.

Top
 Profile  
Ilwhyan
Metel fraek

Joined: Sat Sep 29, 2007 1:41 pm
Posts: 6523
Location: Finland
PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2013 9:32 am 
 

CorpseFister wrote:
Huh, well what whatever works for you! It's definitely something different.

Ilwhyan wrote:
Playing something relatively simple becomes considerably harder when tempo is lowered. Pulling something off technically is obviously harder the faster the tempo is, but inaccuracy becomes remarkably more noticeable when tempo is lowered. Try recording yourself play something in a very slow tempo over a click track or a drum track, and you'll probably notice how much harder it is to make it sound good.


Yeah, I've found trying to play drums at funeral doom tempos very difficult. Recording yourself at a higher tempo and then slowing it don't wouldn't help with that though, would it? If you recorded something at 140 and slowed it down to 70, then a 25ms error would become a 50ms error.

Actually, I fucked around with Audacity with one of our demo songs once, and the slowed down playing was much smoother than I would've been able to play in that slowed down tempo. Certainly, a major factor is probably that I played on top of a drum track that grooved somewhat, and following the drummer becomes much harder when tempo is decreased. I don't have any explanation for this other than that playing in a faster tempo gives certainty to my playing which is harder to maintain when I have more time to think about hitting the next fourth in the same time with the drummer.
_________________
"Behold, wizard, for the last time how the sun looks, for henceforth you will watch it with empty sockets!"
Illusions Dead - death/black metal

Top
 Profile  
Apteronotus
Metalhead

Joined: Thu Jun 18, 2009 9:07 am
Posts: 855
PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2013 10:01 am 
 

While I never messed around much with terribly slow tempos, it was really helpful for me to just double the metronome speed so that I could get a better feel for when the next quarter note was and just think of the metronome as going in 8ths. So instead of working at say 40bpm where I might get distracted and leave the room between quarter notes I would bump it up to a more manageable 80bpm.

Top
 Profile  
Goran
Metal newbie

Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2003 8:32 pm
Posts: 140
Location: Belgium
PostPosted: Mon Mar 18, 2013 3:37 am 
 

boduus wrote:
I'm currently trying to write an EP and just need to finish one song. I don't have any idea of what to write. What is a good chord progression for atmospheric black metal

So you have written all songs except one, yet you have no idea how to compose in the genre? :???:
_________________
My guitar covers: http://www.youtube.com/user/Exoow
Menschheitsdämmerung CD out now (http://menschheitsdaemmerung.bandcamp.com - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oVmlcwAbyuo)

Top
 Profile  
boduus
Metal newbie

Joined: Tue Feb 19, 2013 5:32 am
Posts: 32
PostPosted: Mon Mar 18, 2013 7:12 am 
 

Goran wrote:
boduus wrote:
I'm currently trying to write an EP and just need to finish one song. I don't have any idea of what to write. What is a good chord progression for atmospheric black metal

So you have written all songs except one, yet you have no idea how to compose in the genre? :???:




Yup. I've started playing guitar not so long ago, so I'm not really used to writing music on a guitar. I play the violin since 7 years but its not so easy to compose black metal on a violin....

Top
 Profile  
Metallumz
Metal newbie

Joined: Mon Jan 31, 2011 2:02 pm
Posts: 145
Location: United Kingdom
PostPosted: Mon Mar 18, 2013 10:12 am 
 

Why not a violin and guitar piece together? a long-slow melody on violin mostly low notes, and overlay some guitar chords to get something like a Aes Dana track.

Top
 Profile  
Syntek
Metalhead

Joined: Mon Sep 13, 2010 1:14 pm
Posts: 618
Location: United Kingdom
PostPosted: Mon Mar 18, 2013 7:09 pm 
 

I'm very intrigued with this, and would love to hear what you've written when it's finished.
Make sure to upload it to SoundCloud/YouTube and post it here when you're done!

Top
 Profile  
boduus
Metal newbie

Joined: Tue Feb 19, 2013 5:32 am
Posts: 32
PostPosted: Tue Mar 19, 2013 5:35 am 
 

Syntek wrote:
I'm very intrigued with this, and would love to hear what you've written when it's finished.
Make sure to upload it to SoundCloud/YouTube and post it here when you're done!



I'll post the facebook page and maybe youtube. Thanks for the interest :)

Top
 Profile  
boduus
Metal newbie

Joined: Tue Feb 19, 2013 5:32 am
Posts: 32
PostPosted: Tue Mar 19, 2013 5:36 am 
 

Metallumz wrote:
Why not a violin and guitar piece together? a long-slow melody on violin mostly low notes, and overlay some guitar chords to get something like a Aes Dana track.




Although I dont know Aes Dana this sounds interesting.... Maybe could put some viola for some deeper sound...

Top
 Profile  
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Reply to topic


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum

 
Jump to:  

Back to the Encyclopaedia Metallum


Powered by phpBB © 2000, 2002, 2005, 2007 phpBB Group