Punkt Explained

Punkt illustration

The process for this song was a bit different than usually. The main idea came to me as a whole with visuals for an abstract video.

When I sat down to record the idea, the specific notes weren’t very clear in my mind, but I could record the overall arc and rhythm.
I made a quick sketch for the music of the first half of the piece and video right after (using my nonexistent video skills with the nonexistent tools), all in one morning.

Only then I started thinking, what I would do with the Stick.

The Stick part that comes after the intro consists of 5 over 4, which makes every other repetition land on the up-beat. There are some low accent notes that come every 4th time.
What also makes this section special, is the hand switch in the middle.

Stick part after intro
Stick part after intro.

The other sections and refining was a more laborious process that took place during the next months and was also interrupted with the Corona action.

Here are some two handed chords the Stick is good at.

Stick chords
Stick chords.

Listen to the whole song:

Biitnik Explained

Biitnik illustration

Having just gotten a cello bow, I was eager to use it in a composition and this was the piece. I did mainly long overlaid drones with some melodical movement in one section.

Also some whammy pedal action near the end that gives the air-raid kind of a siren sound.

After the intro bowing section the Stick has a part with a bitcrusher effect that gives this geiger-countery-radioactive sound.

Stick with bitcrusher
Stick with bitcrusher

For the synth the aim was to create a part where one could just tweak the filter and resonance knobs. So I used some arpeggiated chords in the second half of the piece.

Holding just a couple of notes the arpeggiator did the rest.

Synth notes for arpeggios
Synth notes for arpeggios
Arpeggiator output
Arpeggiator output

With the Stick I play arpeggios in Felix Martin style, although in a much modest way. The last 2 bars are a variation that I only play live.

Biitnik stick arpeggios
Stick arpeggios

A video of me playing the arpeggios slow and fast.

Listen to the full piece:

Raak Explained

Raak illustration

I completed this one by Halloween and the mood of the piece is appropriately more menacing.

Using one bassline / chord progression throughout I wanted the progression to be uneven, meaning shorter version alternating with the longer one.

Raak piano intro
Chord progression in piano intro.

Then I laid some melodies over it, making sure that I don’t stay in the key with all of the notes 🙂

This is one of the melodies along with chords played in unison with piano and the Stick.

Raak unison melody 1
Unison melody 1.

The other melody, with a more piercing sound in synth and the Stick.

Raak unison melody 2
Unison melody 2.

Both of the previous melodies have variations, so they don’t appear the same way each time.

Also there’s a shortened even time signature version with modulation full tone up from the main key.

Raak modulated melody.
Modulated melody.

Listen to the full song:

Pellet Explained

Pellet illustration

The main aim of the piece was to use polyrhythms. I first got the itch to do it in a minimal form, while listening to the The Dawn of MIDI “Dysnomia” album. But one thing led to another and I was again veering towards more elaborate.

The polyrhythmic interplay between drums and and other instruments starts right after the piano intro. The kick has 5, sidestick 6 and hi-hat 3. Bass follows the kick, piano plays in sync with the hi-hat, but only every other note.

Drumkit polyrhythm
Drumkit polyrhythm

The piano intro melody consists of long even notes. It starts with chromatic ascending core and expands it going by semitone in both directions.

Later the Stick joins the piano melody in unison while keeping the 3 percussively in bass.

Pellet intro with the Stick
Pellet intro with the Stick

In the “chorus” section Stick has 4 in the bass and 3 in melody the first half and the other way around in the second half.

Here is the middle of the chorus that shows both patterns.

Chorus polyrhythm Stick part
Chorus polyrhythm Stick part

Listen to the full song: