How the music has been made


I've been asked if, besides the guitars, I have played also the drums and the bass to make the music. Well, the answer is no: I made the music, quite fittingly, the Amiga way, i.e. I used a tracker, namely MilkyTracker (although the game itself doesn't use the tracker module, but uses the alternative solution illustrated in this article on LinkedIn).

This is the procedure followed for the Music Mode music (see also the previous devlog post):

  1. on guitar, I composed the two chords progressions the music is built on;
  2. on guitar, I adapted those progressions for the crunchy rhythm guitar and the clean rhythm guitar;
  3. in the tracker, I composed a minimal drum loop;
  4. while the tracker was playing the drum loop, I played and recorded the crunchy rhythm guitar;
  5. in the tracker, I added to the music the guitar track just recorded;
  6. in the tracker, I gave the drums some more structure;
  7. while the tracker was playing the music, I played and recorded the clean rhythm guitar;
  8. in the tracker, I added to the music the guitar track just recorded;
  9. in the tracker, I refined the drums further, until they were about 80% done;
  10. while the tracker was playing the music, I played and recorded the various solo guitars;
  11. in the tracker, I progressively added to the music the solo guitar tracks as I was recording them;
  12. in the tracker, I (almost) finished the drums;
  13. while the tracker was playing the music, I composed the bassline on the guitar;
  14. in the tracker, I programmed the bassline according to what I had just found;
  15. while the tracker was playing the music, I composed the C64 sounds fills/melody on the guitar;
  16. in the tracker, I programmed the C64 sounds fills/melody according to what I had just found;
  17. I recorded my voice counting down from 3 to 1;
  18. I added lots of reverb to the voice samples;
  19. in the tracker, I added the voice samples at the end of the music;
  20. in the tracker, I did the final polish work: I refined the drums, fixed the timings, improved the panning of the instruments, composed the coda, etc.

As the video shows, the music uses 10 tracks, allocated this way:

  • tracks 1-3: drumkit;
  • track 4: crunchy rhythm guitar;
  • track 5: (almost) clean rhythm guitar;
  • track 6: solo guitar A (neck single-coil pickup);
  • track 7: solo guitar B (brigde humbucker pickup);
  • track 8: bass;
  • track 9-10: C64 sound and voice samples.

Fun facts:

  • I decided to add the spoken countdown because, besides adding a little extra dimension to the music, it warns the player that the Music Mode is about to end;
  • making the coda was a pain: the rest of the music had already reached almost 30 seconds, and that was a limit I couldn't go much beyond due to memory constraints (see the article on LinkedIn); eventually I came up with something decent that keeps the music slightly below 31 seconds.

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