How to Compose Epic Music | Mikael Baggström | Skillshare

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Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.

      Your Adventure in Epic Music


    • 2.

      The Power of Epic Music


    • 3.

      Epic Rhythm & Percussion


    • 4.

      Epic Chords & Harmony


    • 5.

      Epic Melody & Theme


    • 6.

      Live Example Dark Action Thriller


    • 7.

      Live Example Engines of Fire


    • 8.

      Live Example Stronger than Steel


    • 9.

      Assignment Sound Instinct


    • 10.

      Powerful Percussion


    • 11.

      Ostinato Strings


    • 12.

      Driving Pulses


    • 13.

      Lush Strings


    • 14.

      Big Brass


    • 15.

      Huge Choirs


    • 16.

      Fast Woodwinds


    • 17.

      Deep Piano


    • 18.

      Authority Sustains


    • 19.

      Epic Hits


    • 20.

      Strong Motion


    • 21.

      Lyrical Solo Parts


    • 22.

      Ambient Soundscapes


    • 23.

      Bold Sounds


    • 24.

      Heavy Accents


    • 25.

      Hybrid Workflow


    • 26.

      Build the Energy


    • 27.

      Huge Contrasts


    • 28.

      Energetic Transitions


    • 29.

      Pulse for Drive


    • 30.

      Layering for Power


    • 31.

      Length for Emphasis


    • 32.

      Silence for Effect


    • 33.



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About This Class

Your Adventure in Epic Music Composition

Hello Composers, Mike here. And you are about to go on a new learning adventure. Your destination for this journey, is to learn the secrets epic cinematic music.


  1. The Foundations of Epic Music

  2. The Guidelines of Epic Music

  3. The Sounds of Epic Music

  4. Practical Tips on Epic Music

  5. Many Live Demonstrations & Examples

In the end, you will be able to create epic music in any style you choose: from intense battle music, to powerful heroic music, to huge, grand and larger than life music. Because you will master the foundations, the guidelines, and the sound palette of epic music.

My name is Mike, and I am a composer.
Just. Like. You. =)

I started making music back in 1998. And I love to educate, motivate, and inspire creative people, like yourself.

So take action now, and start your journey to become a master of epic music composition. Let’s begin your adventure, right now! =)

Meet Your Teacher

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Mikael Baggström

Music Composer | Sound Designer | Video Producer


Hey Friends and Creative People!

My name is Mike, and I am a Music Composer, Sound Designer and Artist. I Share my Story, Journey, Experience and Knowledge, to Inspire and Empower Creative People like you. =)


I believe that learning should be fun. I love to bring my personality into my teaching style. I also try to make my courses dynamic, to be more interesting to you. =)

Friendly regards,
Mike from Sweden
Compose | Artist | Educator

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Level: All Levels

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1. Your Adventure in Epic Music: Hello, composers, Mike here and you are about to go on you. Learning adventure. Your destination for this journey is to learn the secrets of how to compose eight be seen amenity music. You will learn the foundations of the big music. This sounds off epic music on the guidelines off epic music. You will get live demonstrations, practical examples and practice a silence. And in the end, you will be able to compose an epic music track in the style you choose from powerful battle music to angelic and divine music to dork evil, both sneezy or perhaps mighty and rule with music. My name is Mike and I am a composer, just like you. I started making music back in 1998 and I love to educate, motivate and inspire creative people like yourself. Now take action and start your journey to master a big music composition. Let's begin your adventure right now. 2. The Power of Epic Music: What is a epic music, and why is it so powerful in movies, TV series and video games? Let's start by learning the foundations off epic cinematic music A Peak Music is basically vulture than life. Like augmented reality. It is powerful, it is loud. It is there to grab your attention and Addis ends off authority. Put simply, epic music elevates the intensity, vibe and energy off the visuals on scene. When epic music is used in movies, games or any media productions, it is used to amp up the intensity in power in such a way that the music speaks to you. Insist, pay attention. This is powerful and important. The overall dynamics in epic music is very strong, meaning you focus on the louder end off the dynamic range from fortissimo and up F two f f f. However, high controls is also important, so you can have portions are soft or even use silence to add controls, followed by massive hits, stabs, power knows reefs and any loud and intense port. As always in music, there are many variations off each style, and Sean Ger, including epic music. Some epic music has minimal melody and focus mainly on powerful rhythmic drive, other epic music styles as a grand theme and leading milady that you will remember epic music can be dork, an evil or angelic and divine. It can be slow and both or energetic and intense. It can basically be any emotion and vibe, as long as the resulting sound and vibe is very powerful and impactful. Congratulations. You have now learned the very foundations off epic cinematic music, so let's continue in the next video. 3. Epic Rhythm & Percussion: I am now going to play for you and then demonstrate a live example off how you can write powerful rhythm and percussion for epic music. It's going to get loud, so be prepared playing in 321 So now I will show you behind the scenes off these live example. As you can see here, I first have five different instrument groups percussion, low percussion, high rhythm, low volume high and then a baseline. So I like to separate things like this because, um, it is more clear when you look in the media editor because now I can actually watch all these tracks inside just from selected this and going into the piano roll and do this for every single group. Another reason is that I like to put different insert effects If I just go here. Ah, on the different instrument groups, for example, on the percussion, I might have a different compression, some separation going on, and the high percussion might might have some added brightness and shimmer in the e Q and so on. So that is how I like to divide my instrument groups. Now let's go through them one by one. So We're starting with the percussion low. That's solo it. Open it up and here we can see I have but the deep drums, epic drums, Tyco's and bass drum. So if I open this up, you will see that this is action strikes, Big boom and som ble. The next track iss, um, see epic drums damage, which is Armageddon and sambal. Those are my to go to for the low percussion. Then I have Tyco's, which is Ah, Tiger creator on. In this case, I have both low percussion and some stick. It's and then I have a classic orchestral bass drum, which is the period drama orchestral percussion on DA Altogether. It would check the piano roll. You can see clearly where the main accents land on Let's take a listen first like so So that is the low percussion. What I did it was, I like to record the main accents first. So starting on the epic drums, for example, and this is actually completely there, um, with a deep rooms in this case, it doesn't have to be the deep from or very the though in tone, the epic drums or basically like the Low Slam than the Tyco's. We have this so I still have the main accents. If I check with a B deep drums here, Um, all this one in fact, because he the main accents but mawr groove going inside there and then for the bass drum, it is actually some extra notes compared to the deep rooms. As you can see, this is the bass drum. If I play that with the deep drums will hear the main accents learned here on the This is basically adding some over single patient. Now all together what I did on the insert effect this first I always use again plug into reduced again for gain staging. Then I This is one of my favorite plug ins because it has a saturation compression and a character. Nope. So I put it on fat maximum character. Ah, you can do quite a lot of compression on the low end instruments. So based low percussion and so on. And then some mild saturation. And then I dialing the wet to dry here. So this is actually imperil mode. So without it clips Ah, let's see if we can solo on Lee percussion and shake without it And with that, you get more of that low and that is the percussion low. Then would you go to the percussion high? Let's open it up and see what I have so air Here I put the concert Tom's ethnic percussion , a snare drum stick. It's some shimmer effect on, then the crash Cymbals. So if we have a look inside what's going on here, you can see it's starting to get more complex, but the main accidents are still respected. Competitive percussion low. So let's have a listen first. Playing in 321 Right now, let's take a look at what I have in here. So first the concert Tom's which, or see if we can put only that on screen. Um, percussion damage studio. Tom's sticks when ethnic percussion from damage is, well, ethnic ensemble percussion. A patch. The snatch drum is from orchestral. Percussion is DX on da The stick. It's all from damage. They all know getting patch higher up in the range of a stick. It the seamer is from orchestra percussion. Ah, see X again, the axillary library and then the Cymbal. Crash Cymbals are also all the symbols off from orchestral percussion because these arm or classic and natural authentic percussion no. Ah, let's have a look at what I did on the insert here. So here I went for the bright character, less compression, still some mild separation because I love to use that on basically old channel groups for mixing. And now if we put those two together and let's have a look inside, you can see especially whether Maine accents land. So the long notes are, in most cases, Cymbal crashes because I like to really mark the main accents. So it sounds like this with all percussion now. Ah, one thing you noticed was I used the tomes and ethnic percussion more as feeling like almost like a counter melody. But for percussion, you can say that. So starting here and then there is some room here, as you can see. So I fill it up with the toms and ethnic percussion and then also feeling out the end there . The snare drum is basically mark me those that that I doubt that, uh, they're at that, that those Maine accents, basically, which are played here, you can hear it own, for example, the Taiko. So let's play those together like So, as you can see here also in the piano, roll the 33 strikes here, here and here or here, or four accents basically augmenting what's going on in the Tyco's. So that is percussion low percussion height. Now, when we get into the rhythm with rhythm and percussion music, you should really dance the same dance, meaning you should respect the main group, the main beat going on on especially the main accents. So for the low ah, rhythm. Um, I have, ah, short based rings than low strings and low breasts, so let's have a listen first. Sounds like that. So what do we have going on in here for the bass strings? No Volvo in stumble, mainly staccato here. Low strings, which are providing some Austin author pattern. The low range. Speak Otto strings on super phobia. One unveiling for the low breasts I'm using you four. So with stuck out the full in some of breast here and if we take a look inside here, what's going on really is you can clearly see other see the main accents in octaves here, the main beat to the main groove over the low ah rhythms. And if you check also at the same time with the low percussion. So let's play the low percussion with the rhythm low and let's in fact open up these together so you can see bam! Damn! Damn! So this is This is these are the main accidents. This is slightly weaker than this. And this this this I can see you can really see where it's going on in the final cadence is , of course, the strongest accents. As you can hear, they really augment each other. They play the same or the day dance, the same dance. And now if you go to the so for their rhythm low By the way I'm using again supercharger with a warm character, slight more situation and some compression here and then for the rhythm. High. Quite a lot going on here. So I have made strings meet breast high strings Hi breasts or a short note articulations than high high winds. Basically flute playing this little rum patterns here and then choir shorter regulations, the cattlemen and women. So let's take a listen to that as well. Look in the piano roll and it sounds like this uh, if you really think about it, it really respects the main beat. So if he can play that with the though percussion, see how it sounds really, really important to respect the dance that the groove is providing the main groove. And, um, let's look inside what we have as instruments here, so we have cinematic strings to full ensemble patch, for they sound so a main ostinato line, mid breasts feeling up, basically the x NC at that. That that that that. So I think it's for so for ensemble on four status like that. Then for the high strings, another ostinato line played by first violence on systematic strings to play this pattern. Now here's a tip for you don't have Teoh. So these are short knows. You don't have to feel the entire range, creating basically a simple straight group. Add some silence, Teoh. Make it into a pattern. And if you put this on this one, if you check again, this one is a straight pattern. There's no gaps. It's every eighth note here all way through. But when you put another rhythm that has a pattern built into it, you will see that now This here is silent in the high violin, which means that you get a groove here way more interesting. Eso. You can use these also to add accents harmonically by, for example, only playing the notes area in sync with the low range ostinato when you want to extent that specific beat. Now next we have the high breast shorts here, which are is first Otto on four. So trumpets in this case playing this thing here with some faster notes. Here on basically again, you can see the fast pattern than some silence, fast patron silence and so on. And if you play that together with the main drive here, let's put the high strings as well. It starts to get way more interesting, but it's not finished there. We filled up with some choirs theater. I'm going to just get this for now, because that's the final part. So the quieter men and and women are basically playing in the main accents. We can, in fact, at the low percussions. You can really hear it on Butch this in the piano roll here. So quite a close sound there because I wanted the focused shouts and then finally Ah, by the way, these are played by storm acquire two in both in both quite acquires their women and men. Finally, I have this which is a food from Let's see, ah, seen from essential flute here and solo because I wanted to add this little runs to add some more excitement like this and then finally and what I did here, which is also a little tip for ease. I put all of these in staccato are stuck. Yeah, short staccato articulation. Except this one which is actually sustained it because I want to emphasize that final note you hear it has some ring to it on. That is a tip for it's basically the same as when you had that final hit on a roll on a drum, extending the final note. So on the rhythm high, I have put very light compression, some bright character and some situation, and also another tip is own high range instruments like rhythm high. I like to put a stereo of I dinner, too. Basically make the higher range in your rhythms fighter, and you can hear days if I turn off the ozone imager on both of this compared to this one again, so the difference is subtle, but it makes a huge difference in the overall mix. I only use about 25% increase in steer with or so So that is the rhythm high section. Finally, for the base I layered so access can see here These are groups with individual tracks. In this case, I actually played the group's. I play both these instruments at the same time, which is a suburb base, low sine wave sub base from calmness, fear and, um, laid that with what I call an attack base, more plucky time base, which is a classic 303 Baseline A made from the full see owned synthesizer here in this case. So let's listen to this sub base alone and then then listen to the attack base. And then together that attack layer really adds emphasis and focus to the initial attack of each note on what I What I also did was I did modulation, so I actually mapped the level of the synthesizer to the modulation. I like to have all instruments in my music using modulation for the dynamics, because I wanted his increase in power in the baseline in the end. So this is the baseline. Let's listen to that at the same time as the percussion low. Look here what we have. In fact, it's so low that you can't really hear it when the percussion is going on. So what we have is this God, that, uh and then this is important but bad bumper. So this is an important phrase, and this four here is an important phrase. Um, we can stack them together with the rhythm low when you can hear it, perhaps more clearly, cause then it's more a minimal can really see. And on the base. I didn't put any effect there, but I did put a bass amp on this. So that is it. That is this entire track. Overall, let's make a final listening through it while we watch the piano roll editor for every single part. If we can get that on screen. So I need to do this because we have the hi run here. Let's in fact, skip that I just assuming a bit mawr so we can see more what's going on in the main beat. So playing in 321 now take action and practice writing, recording and composing rhythm and percussion suitable for epic cinematic music 4. Epic Chords & Harmony: In this video, I will play and demonstrate for you how we can write deep rich chords and harmonies in epic music. Be prepared for loudness playing in 321 Now let's dive into this live example where I have focused mainly on the courts and harmony off epic music which I personally put in a folder called Back or Harmony. So this is the group these four tracks here or providing the main ah, cool progression and harmony voices for these composition here. But of course, you also have harmony in the melodic rhythms as we have here. So Ah, I will first play on Lee these backing track here. So we can here, What's going on? This is what provides that big, rich, deep hormone e progression off the track. Right. So Ah, what What is going on here? Well, in the low end, you have the octaves here which is providing basically the the base, the harmonic anchor off this progression. So you should have as a guideline to always have the base doubled in octaves, which could be with a cello, for example, with a low breasts or whatever. On in the lowest note, you usually have the strings on perhaps even a sub base on a synthesizer, so let's check what's going on. First we have this, which is, um, played by lush basis from a FLOTUS on. You can also see which is really this is a really extra important for court, and harmony is that use laws of motion. So here we have the dynamics. I opted for a lower dynamic range on the basis because it was too loud. Otherwise so. That is the bass part and four course in harmony. Generally, another guideline is to keep the voices connected. So if we check here again, keep them overlapping, so you get into the goal to transition. But why have these gaps here? Well, it will get into that shortly. But first, let's check the insoluble strings. Here. Lush strings, the daughter on a flat surface with no close mike, because I want to get the warmer, more background sound on American see again, even stronger dynamic motion. You get the overlapping of the goddess fear, the octaves in the base, and then this Harmon align atop on the final canyons. Even interest is another harmony for even more powerful impact there at the end. We're getting now into the breast because breasts, vocals and woodwinds are played by your breath. Which is why, if we get into this just first check which we use breath ensemble from Symphony Essentials . So this is why I introduced some gaps here. Ah, here. Between this and this note and here in both these cases because holding it was a long note , especially with the big brass instruments without shaking. Your breath is extremely hard, so you really should add some gaps here. There's a day spa voice has a gap here. This voice place, to be honest a little too long. I should have a gap here as well. But I introduces there. So this is here and here and on the lowest we have it here and here. And gone is the lower. Well, the more force the sound is, Ah, dynamics the shorter You can play the note before the player needs a breath. So how thus, this sound? Yeah, very noble zone from the low breasts. And they're finding that I have acquired. I'm using a mixed choir from pallets and 40 sketch pad. So it's mixed. Women and men Let's take a look what we have here again here, a break in the note because they need to breathe. Right? So that is the choir now on the overall section, um, four courts in harmony or basically providing the depth and backgrounds of bed for your music story. So that is why I used a form character because you can use an e que to dial down basically the focus frequencies and highest frequencies and then some very relied compression, because I still want to have that dynamic variation and movement going on and sliced separation. But also I like to use some, um, stereo enhancement widening on background tracks like this to make them feel even deeper. Onda uh, Richard, let's see if I did something on the EQ you not on that group. So what is important also is if you check here what these are playing right, So this is the core progression. Now let's trick the low rhythm. What does that provide? Super simple, marking the ones on each bar for the tonal centre off the chord progression, which you can't see because it's on top of this. But anyway, it's sounding like this. Let's see it's played by basis short strings on low ensemble in Noval. So not really a driving rhythm in this case, because I wanted that dynamic movement from the backing tracks of the courts of harmonies. But you can add it to so in its own. That sounds a bit strange, but you have to hear it in context. So we have the rhythm high track where I have actually opened for coal. Len. You strings which Or I think, when you when the string players hit the ah string instruments with the bow, Um, so you get this percussive type sound. This has been super common offer, being introduced mainly by Host Simmer and other rhythmic hybrid composers for film, music and stuff because it has that clock ticking type sound, often with the straight beat in that case, like it straight a note beat or something. And then I have the meat strings here, which are cinematic strings to full ensembles. Cattle patch. So you get this rhythm. Let's see little arpeggio type Austin alters. Let's hear that and the colonial strings here on the entire rhythmic I. In fact, all of the harmonic parts are rhythmic, low rhythmic I and backing tracks on. Another guideline I will give for you is when you have laid out your cords. Ah, long notes. Accord knows that Harmony's when you add the rhythmic stuff. Most of the notes should be hidden like behind because they are playing the exact same voices. Ask these low notes and then you get some variation, as you can see here but most of these or were actually hidden because these are and these Colin you or the same notes some of these notes here in the corporation. Otherwise it gets too cluttered and messy in the mix. Now, if you also check, we could shake the percussion as well if you want to, even though it's not really the focus of this, listen but what I hoped it for here, let's check the little percussion first. Is this so Mainly the ones are accepted here again, like the river low here, with some low mid, um, Tyco's providing some single patient here in group Onda. Also the epic drums here, Basically, um, you have the deep crumbs, which or action strikes big boom ensemble. I like to use that the lowest one than Armageddon passion damage, which is my go to as the first option, most epic music, then Tyco's from Tyco creator because I wanted some of me drums to fill up the space in between. And then the bass drum isse from Superior Drummer Orchestral percussion is DX module just to get that accent. So that is the lower percussion. The high percussion is really simple, not lots of facts and not even a slide room in this case. So I opted for a tome here because I want to have some feel, um, in the end, which is damaged student homes, steak. Let's say what that sounds like, like in the field before here, before the one on these cases here. Then some stick. It's just to fill up with some drive, at least which are to do. Are we getting in his own blood patch again there? And the high range should get this some single patient there as well. On the epic music is, it's really hard to to if you don't add the classic crash symbols to mark in the absolute Maine accents. Write something like this and then the final body. So, of course, doubled up here So on the high percussion some Ah, I I'm actually made it warm in this case, not bright, even though it's high percussion, because I want to dial it back in the mix bit not to overtake what's going on The harmony on main theme here. So, in fact, let's go to the front, which is the main theme. Super simple. I think I actually check this. Yeah, this is This is all layered in either in unison, as in this case, string and theme or in unison. And then the violence are playing an octave above so we can see it like this Here. It's really accept the final note, which you get tripled up here for the final cadence. So ah, I think there's a slight difference. Isn't another tip I have for you if you cope reports like if you play something here on the strings team and they want to double it up first I recommend that you, um, actually played manually, so you get some humanization going on. Then what I like to do is use different amounts off Qantas ation because you can Kwan ties . You don't have to quote eyes 100%. It agreed. In fact, I I really do it even four drums Or basically I never do it. So on the move rhythmically parties, the higher you can Qantas it. So let's say you can't as this 50%. Then if you quote as this Ah, let's say 40%. All the notes will be slightly different in timing. So that is one tape to get some variation, even though even if you copy this part because you played it with the human feel and you get that variation in timing. So when you apply different quantities values you end up with different timing for the copied part. The next one tip I have for you is you see the this dynamic Kirby here, Um, so I usually recorded live, at least on the mellow dick part mano a mano fornek lead parts like this with the fader on my keyboard. Then let's say you cooperate again, go into the next port and draw some changes to it, or even move. It's slightly left and right so that when you end up with ah, all of these tracks here, like, why don't I see everything? Copy this like so you can see that none of these curves or exactly the same they follow the same type of shape. But there are subtle differences and all of that in music. Lots of subtle differences in timing involved dynamics and movement and everything. Length makes the final result. When you layer them up rich, deeper, more authentic, more lifelike and full of emotion. So this is what you can end up with. Uh, and here I can give you another tip is most often Lagardere lions, meaning he slight overlap. So they play in the gotta mode. Sounds great for melodies and leading themes. But don't forget about spaces. Music needs to breathe. This space here, um, provides a lot of character to these themes. So take a listen here to everything. Listen to this. Drop out here in the main theme playing in 321 Onda, You also child could hear another thing here. While all these the main theme is going diving down in dynamics. If go and shake the backing tracks, we'll see here Um, you actually get some of the instruments at least this one and this one slightly holding out and even rising in volume for a type of mini crescendo. So it takes over from the main theme there. So, um, that is it. That is quartz and harmony and epic music. Finally, let's take a listen to everything we have here. Um oh, wait. One final t by her for you is if you use courts and home attracts in a group like I do and then the front tract of theme melodies and leading tracks, riffs and hooks and whatever. In another track, a group track for mixing purposes. I like to put this in a form mode. Onda, Um, this front one. I would cite more separation to make it more prominent in the mix, and I like to have it in brighter setting to boost those highest frequency. You can do this with an e que, of course, But basically another thing I've done here is, um I don't think it shows if I haven't showed frozen the track, But what you can do is go into the most prominent frequencies. What we hear the most music is around between one kilohertz here and three killers around here, because that is the most prominent part of our of the human voice. So our ears have become highly focused on this range. That is basically the mid frequencies, and what you can do is reduce that slightly here on the backing tracks that say, on 1.8 center there or something like that. And then you do the opposite increase on the front track so you add any Q and in increases . You have to be careful when you do. ICO changes on groups mixing groups like this you should keep. The change is minimal because it adds up when you consider all the tracks. You actually add that etude or effect, too. So finally, let's listen to everything while we check the piano roll editor. I don't think you want to see all of these. So with just shake the Let's see, just check the piano roll wild. We play everything back right, playing in three to Bomb Now, take action and practice writing, recording and composing epic music with special focus on all tracks, playing chords and harmonies 5. Epic Melody & Theme: now you're going to listen to, and I will then demonstrate and break down how we can ride bold and mighty melodies and themes in epic music. Playing in 321 Okay, all right, So let's dive in and check these practical example of epic cinematic music, where I have focused mainly own melody and a theme which I personally like to have its own track group for. So here I call it's from two can call it theme motif, lead melody or whatever, but basically all the tracks playing the main theme over the composition. Ah, little Dow into that shortly. But first, let's check what we have here. So we have four different groups. Percussion, low percussion, high back, which all the course and harmonies and then the front, which is the main theme ability now. Ah, also, this is Avery Slow Trek. It's only 100 bpm, and it's very sparse and minimal, as you can see if I check the percussion going on here on the piano rule, it's only played by deep drums, epigrams, low drums and Cymbal crash Cymbals, which sounds like this so as getting a very slow except ah little Mawr energy here, and that is basically the percussion backing track played by basis, lush basis in lettuce and sambal strings. Lush strings here also flatter strings and a mixed acquiring pallets in foreign sketch bad providing him the movement in harmony and dynamics. As you can see from this here. So let's play those in solo. There's a gap here, the way the music some air, suspend it on, resold for the cadence here. So as you can hear a very warm tone, which is partly, of course, from the low range, as you can see here, everything the under well, in the seat one cto not to even a gym. It'll see here and then also because I used a warm character for this type of eq you filtering here. Um, because I really want to push it back in the mix. Also, I'm using ah, also an imager to increase the Serie with and some e que here to cut some off the focus frequencies as I call everything between one and around three killers, which is where the human ear really picks up. The frequency is the most, which is the natural focus range off vocals so then, of course, the main theme. So what we have here we in fact, we have several instruments. However, they are all playing practically the same thing. That is how you get a big, powerful main theme. So, um, first I have strings which I played recorded manually with my made a keyboard. Lush strings here, No close mike because I wanted to lush even lusher tone with a flood of strings. So here I actual play the main milady, plus a base line. Ah, including these spaces. By the way, to have some air which sounds like this again. Look at the dynamic movement. Ah, so as you can also see there and here, of course, there's a lot of the gulf going on here. Strings are perfect for legal transitions. Then I use a cello section for with the goto an octave below. So I like I like to actually write this in my projects. I write minus eight v a mean but that is short for minus eight full nose, which is an octave. Ah, so that is playing the main theme. Not with the base. I copied this over and remove the bass notes. And then I adjusted the timing a bit with different conversations settings, as I like to do, you can move its light on left and right or even use a humanized feature. If your DW supports ah, humanization, which most professional DEA W's should have, then I have the strings theme again, plus a TV A meaning. In this case, it's lust, violence, flotus, meaning an octave above this. So this is the main, an octave below an octave above. So these are violence, and I believe, let's see what I took here. I removed the close mike because it often sounds to be too sharp, higher up in the range. And I also believe if which, let's see the dynamics go up to 90 100 I think I went, Yeah, I reduced the dynamics a bit, Um, because higher up in the range for, like, violence, it tends to get sharp very quickly. Then I have, Let's see in samba brawls, yes, full ensemble brawls, but longs to stains playing the same thing slightly different dynamic curve, which is also something you should think about. If you shake all of these at the same time, you can see again. Always have or not always. But the main guideline is to have the same kind of shape for how the music moves of role but always have some differences. So not do. No, no, not every copy in the exact same performance. Timing wise like perfectly Ah, duplication off the timing. We need the starting point of each note and also make sure to have differences everywhere with the dynamic curves. It all adds up to that human life like performance. And then finally, I have a voice like Gotta from Venus Sound Iran, I think, Um, a section here which sounds like this. Oh, sorry. I forgot to play the ensemble boss. Yeah, so that is the ensemble broths. And then the final The goal to here females, these females, but it is quite low in their range. So, um, that's because I really wanted the violin to stick out in the high end with that beautiful lush ah sound. So let's take a listen to the entire now from section the main theme played by ALS. These parts some simultaneously now remember these displaying the main theme plus basis, then shallows and oxy below, and violence an octave above the example. Browse. I think it's on the same range as yes, the cello, meaning one or two beloved. This one on the The Garter here is basically the same as the original theme so altogether. Watch here and you can see recover three octaves. This is how we get a big, powerful sound, - right ? So that is the overall theme. Very powerful, very focused sound because all the layers are perfect in octaves or unison. Now you don't have to do this. You could, in fact, introduce another layer or even make one of these layers into harmony line. Not in the sense off cord Kordell Harmonists, meaning the core progression, but in fact, have one of these. Let's say this one here, Um, let's say you have it 1/3 above. Transpose it up, but of course, you need to make sure that it follows. The scales of some nose will have to be transposed 37 hours and some four, depending if it's a minor or main. Recall my Haider or major court, but basically making one of them follow this exact same melody line, but on a harmony off the or regional theme. So that is the front, as you can hear in context, very powerful. And it, of course, all adds up into Let's listen to once again everything but watching the P Enroll editor as reduced. So so playing in 321 now take action and practice, writing, recording and composing epic music, focusing on a powerful and focused main theme. 6. Live Example Dark Action Thriller: This is live example off cinematic action music is called dork action thriller because, well, honestly, I was kind of inspired off the Dark Knight sound fact wanting that dork atmospheric pals invited with high intensity. So let's take a listen through it first and then dissected group by group playing in 321 - Right ? So let's start the FX group first. So the only thing I have here is actually these final, though impact you need headphones or subwoofers to really hear that. So that is on the ending. Cadences there, though. Let's continue right away with the percussion group. So again, driving with big drums I actually don't have any drums on damage or Magainin patching this I see now. So the main big drums is playing this so kind of a pals on its own. And if we stack the Tyco's on top of it, let's listen to those on its own first. So here we have it. By the way, if you hear a kind of a strange group, that is because this is actually in 54 words that time signature. So if we take a look here, you can see if we assume in. We have Ah 12345 and then bore 45 here. So five beats per measure. And that adds look to detention and energy off this action track. So the big rooms here or played action strikes. Giant drums are also in the second part. Include acoustic drank it just the stock drum kit in logic here to really intensify the beat and then Tyco's or hear Tiger creator. So those together also, this is in 170 bpm, which is really high. So if we add this stick it Ah, that is damage, I think or will getim patch. You also heard that little fill in the end there, Let's say, Was it the equals? Yes, that they did that which is the cool way to have I. I usually add something every other body filled up in some some instrument on da Then we have the Cymbal crashes. This is just addictive rum symbols The simple swells from suspended symbols away this factory again here going to the next section and also in the end here. So and he also heard, like drop out in the end where I only have their sticks and then the symbols, well, going into the cadence there. So all in all we have the percussive rhythm. And by the way, let's check the or the drums here. I believe I have it again, as I always very often do is cut the end the low end off the drum kit, because I want to have the big drums cut through there in the mix. So if you like, said no to this on its own, it's basically more of a mid range kind of sounds of listen, go here. The simple swell Going into the second part where the acoustic drum kit comes in, it really increases the energy. Let's see. Here's something else here. Why do I hear the rhythm? Let's meet that for no. So if you check what's going on here in on Lee the percussion off this section Ah, there also the first part. I accidentally got that, but anyway, it looks kind of a lot, but to go closer, most sticks up here. The accents you can clearly see, they're so it might look like a lot. But if you go in, you see that the main accents and the tigers are really the fundamental off this group. Everything else just fills it up. So, like so So that is the percussion. Next, let's move on to the rhythm section. So in the rhythm section, I actually have some sounds here from openess Fear. That's just, for example, this is a rhythmic ticked like a palace ing things. So if you look here on the piano roll, it looks like long sustained notes. But when you listen to it on its own, So it's basically a arpeggio hated rhythm here on a high, shimmering, ticking sound, which is great for cinematic action, music and thrillers and tension and stuff like that. And I have another one over here just called rhythmic pulse, which is another passion in the same vein and out as you can hear so together, those actually add that modern hybrid touch, which is very popular. Andi can clearly here in the Dark Knight movies and stuff like that, but that's not the main grid than the main rhythm we can listen to. First played here by these shops like at the Strings again from Venice, modern strings with a sporting close mikes, only to get this and they come out in this coming in the second part on you hear? You hear, you can hear the dark knight influence with the chromatic step of the seven. Lt or TT tt seven out, seven out. Seven. Old seminal That is so high tension through the progression there. Andi, if we continue with what? See, what else did we have? Rhythmic, Particularly powers. Oh, I have another one of these policies here I can see which I guess called only rhythm. Let me see what that is. Yeah, so you can find lots of these in the or DPM patches or simply create one yourself with the AARP educators. So this sounds like this. The cool thing about these kind of ticking pulsing or projected things gated things is that you can simply joe out the notes for every court changed. Just the root, and you will have something that is very high tension and driving energy instantly. Now let's go on to the accents played by the bass strings here. Ah, let's see what we have whips. I meant that one is the noble strings. Again. It's close that and let's check what they play here. So it's Oak Chaves. Now the main accents, which I believe is played by the big drums. A swell Let's listen to the big drums on the base rings at the same time. Can I get that that one and that one like so? So here is the big drums Here have the are called are called two strings based rings there . Um then if we check the next one which is lush strings, cinematic strings, full ensemble patch just because I like you layer it with amore lush base on You can also hear if we get into on check the automation here you can see it up the modulation increasing here. So the base, these bays actually increases intensity from kind of low with the beginning to the very, very, very accented in the second part. Then for the Chelios again cinematic strings to here I have it would shake this at the same time. Yes. Again, the semi note kind of dramatic steps playing is excited. Different rhythm than these ones over here. Ah, open up that again. So it together the first main rhythms Ah, strings there. And the chill owes a bit basically many of the notes are layered, but you have some Syncopation here, very dissonant intervals as it can here, which really adds to the action and tension vibe. Then going up to the high strings. We have the violence short here, played by somatic strings again, our first violence on Let's see if we this was stuck out. So I think, um so what do they play? Basically the same asked. The chill owes. But with this double note, like your I double every note with the lower velocities. So if assuming here you can see it's a double note. 16th note. Just offering. So it's crazy. It's stuttering. Didi, Didi, Didi stuttering feel and lay with the Chelios. No, I think it's actually layered with this kind of hard to hear in context with the other strings, because it's lower. But it really adds that attention in the high end. And then I have some pittsy cattles playing violence, too, just to add some more focused to the beginning off these notes and then some breasts here, which is played by four. So on the staccato notes we'll see what we have. So do we have here? Ah, just a root note just a root note of the progression there. So, you know, the rhythm section sounds like this way, that way, then ending there. Moving on to the low end group where I have the baseline again with sub base just from trillion minimal deep cream preset baseline CS 80. Big warm. So these are the same sounds I used in a previous life. Examples Three or three based on here, Layered. Let's see what we have. Um, What does it sound like? Well, let's check this sound first. Actually, we have low strings here from a flotus lush strings keys. Which leg? Otto, But playing, of course, in the low range. Jessica NSI here. So actually, these aren't palaces. This is just the low end as super long the gotta notes here, basically, just filling up that low end with high energy and power. Not really energy about about power and authority. And then for the backing group, let's see what I have here. This stuff soft strings, which is a Hollywood studio string section in all, Miss Fear playing with C basically harmonists here. So what does that sound like? See? Oh, and at the same time I here I have this stool test. Oh, strings here, filling up the shimmer in the high end, which is Bennis Modern strings so tossed. Oh, Onda. Um, together, they really have that eerie attention quality. Again, the semi note chromatic step here, here and here and here on here. But one of my favorites way ways of adding tension is using the seminal to step interval eso that is the back section and for the ending. Well, you heard I used only the sticks. This, um symbol swell. And then with the big hit on the big drums, the tiger at the same time. Cymbal crash. Um, what did we have on the rhythms down below here? Yeah, just the more culture base. Ah, lost rings, base baseline, low strings based and even piano. Note. I forgot about that. Are starting some focus to the ending note there. So going from here. So all in, all in context. Ah, let's see if we can assume into everything and listen to Onley. This part here played from here, but I want to sue meanness. You can actually see what's going on as much as possible anyway, right? Playing in 321 rights That Waas dork action thriller 7. Live Example Engines of Fire: all right. So this is a live example of his cinematic action music composition that I call endedness of fire. So let's play through first. It's short, but it is fully orchestrated and complete. So offer I played it through. We will go through each off The groups here on the different instruments and sounds are used, ah, to create this track. So playing in 321 no, - and a very powerful ending the arrest IQ into here. All right, so let's first take a look if I select everything and like looking in the piano roll to show all media. I have two audio tracks here which will not be shown, but otherwise I think everything will be included, so it might look pretty crowded. But as you can see, the results off short notes, lots and lots of them, which are basically showing how much of an action and energy type track is really is because these are either percussion palaces, baselines, ostinato, strings, stabs and so one on you can see it's basically crowded all over the place, and that is one off the and, ah, signs off a cinematic action music track or any action music really lots off rhythm and up here you see the main melody, the leading melody. I often recommend that used to really, milady higher up in the range and even consider doubling it up here in the highest range. So it is doubled, let's say, the leading melodious somewhere here and then doubled higher with second violence or something to really make it cut through in the mix and the same in the low end. Here we have the baseline on strings, I think, and it's actually doubled to be the a baseline synth bass line, which playing your pals off the main beat, Um, sometimes an oak table over here, sometimes enough to the higher. But basically the baseline should be very much in focus. That or the bay, the low end on the high end as well. But the most important thing for action music is all these short nose percussion rhythms, pulses and such things, right? So let's diving through each off these mixing groups. So first we have these effects group where I have included I think this is boom low boom to really mark the ending, it's gonna hear, hear their on, then also a riser effect. These are on the This is an old you filed, by the way from a ricer sound. If expect that I created myself on the booms or from what's opening up and see, I think it's gravity by heavy. Also do so you have various different dooms here that you can choose from, so that's basically it for the effects. Now one of the most important things for action music is, of course, the percussion. So let's listen on Lee on the percussion group This soul in these will actually so low all of the percussive tracks here. So let's take a listen. - Nice . So that is the percussion track. The main percussion I have is this track here which basically place, Ah, the main accents. I think that is on a big drums. Let me put this up so I can see it. Yep, this is from damage the Armageddon ensemble patch. So let's take a listen. Onley that I think I can do actually added a fat effect to reduce some of the high end to make it really cut through. If I remove that because I wanted more low and boost and I want other percussive instruments to take care off the middle and high range than I have some big drums here, which are basically the main accent, though. Yeah, these are the main accents played home action strikes, giant drums. Also fat effects, which basically is saturation based enhancer compressor. Lots of these things in one Pugin, but you can basically think of these is boosting saturation and compression, some distortion and some filtering off the high end and, as you can see, a C Super sports as he should have it on the lowest percussion. But I have Tyco's taking care off some of the mid range. I think like so and then some Tom's in the second part off the track, which goes up in energy. I wanted to have some feels charms are grateful, feels so if we take a look at this, can I see hello like that? As you can see, it's only feeling out the ending these bars here like this so the simple it'll fill their sticks or great sticks, clicks and tick talks and sounds like that are great for adding energy. If you use it in the kind of a faster rhythm, so It sounds like this from secret patient, as you can hear there as well. Um, and they also adds loss of energy because lighter or shorter sounds like clicky, sticky sounds or, naturally, mawr, energetic because they are lighter and quicker basically compared to, for example, symbols without which had energy. But not really. Are they at power on intensity but not really energetic? So listen, just have that owned them. Some of the most important board changes the night also included symbol swells right here before the second part on into the ending like this, or is yes and one no than then modulation to increase the dynamics like this going into the Cymbal crash. And then finally a shaker, which changes pattern. So let's see. This is suspended symbols. No, it's this is see Shimmer, shake, strike. Let's see, the This is, um, suspended symbols. The crashes off from addictive drums, which I have modified added some plate reverb, supercharger, some compression and and warm character and saturation to beef them up. The sticks are from damage. I think they are from the Armageddon in sambal kit. Ah, let's see the toms. Did I check those also from damage studio Tom's Steak. I actually damages one of my favorite percussion plug ins, ISMM or hybrid sound, to sign on processed compared to natural orchestral percussion. But for action music, this works really great. So the shaker is simply some patterns playing. So I change patterns as you could see here and then again. Now here, as you can hear shakers, shakers and stick clicks, take talks kind of stuff, sounds or one of the greatest ways to have fast rhythms that really, really add energy if I go back and listen to what happens when we go into here only on the percussion. So listen now. Lots of Mawr energy just from introducing those shakers and clicks and sticks. All right, let's go on to the rhythm group. So, of course, the freedom should mimic or respect the main groove, the main beat and the main accents as to all other instruments. But it's really important for the for the freedom. So I have. The main rhythm track is short staccato strings from Venice, modern strings, which I just got. I really liked that you could have a spot Mike, which really makes them super short. So if we listen to it and we can shake the piano roll at the same time was Just listen to that for now on, but we'll see if you can see everything here. We can see the main accents, which are, I think, or mimicking the main beat in the and big drums, then, is some harmonic progression here. So let's take a listen to only with shops. Take out the strings. Beat way, go into the next port here. So that is pride in the main groove. And if we listen to that on its own with the percussion, so you can I do like this. You can hear that the main accidents off the staccato strings or respecting the main accents off the percussion that is a super important for action music. Then we have basis strings, short strings coming in all that. The later part because it's always good to be able to add even more energy in the high end , in the lower and even midrange whatever. So this Ah, these are playing the main accents as well, with a couple of other knows, I hear so some single patient let's do that together with the shops I got strings like so take a look of them together. Yes. You see some extra notes here on the other note. Every other note here offer the main accents. It's actually much lower in velocities. Take a listen again so you can see just add some, almost like an echo Ellipse. Yes, debase rings. So if I assuming you can see that the velocity difference is quite big here to really make sure those are more off Vanecko I think those are layered with these lush strings. Ah, let's see, the is what I use here low ensemble from Nova Modern strings And then we have here luscious strings. I think it's yes, cinematic strings to because I wanted board because ah, well, it has more lush character, more whole recording. So listen to this. See, if we consume in, I don't want the entire track like that, right? Same way as the base rings and you can hear much more lush sound. But together really this sharper, more focused on with the, um, more laughter sound. And also, as you can see, both of these are layering octaves, which is a really good practice for low London basis. again with the percussion so really respecting the main groove they're going on. We have the short shallows which are playing more like a fastest in order line. Ah, almost an overpaid you, actually. So let's take a listen to that. But first, let's see what instrument we have. Somatic strings to sell. Oh, patch right. And then it continues to the second part there. And that really asked because these are only basically the May accents. So these actually takes care of the drive energy and well makes it more interesting. But if you take a look here, the main accidents in most cases here are already accented with velocity. The dynamics of the Chelios. What story? There Violas are also doing the same kind off arpeggio. So I think this is me making the chills. But an octave higher on that is something you should always consider. Sort about that I don't know why it stuck the note There is to layer, um, an octave above. If you really want something to have more focus on, cut through in the mix layer on another instrument that's playing an octave above or below can be a really great way So the violas. I think all of these arson America strings to violence, cinematic strings to yet And here I actually have string runs and those a great to really add some sparkle sparkle energy, basically. So take a listen. Look what happens. That's a two octave run. One often run short, direct, talked about on then two octaves down. I think in the under, take a listen to the entire rhythm and you can hear, though Well, yes, yes, the strings were now. So listen to all of this from this point, So really, add some sparkle on detail there than I have for the brass. It's mostly stabs esta Kappa notes. So the main stabs here are from, let's say, four So which is one of my favorite by heavy Oh, City, one of my favorite brass plug ins. Older libraries. So it basically playing stabs on the accents. So listen to that we the percussion and you can hear as you can hear there. Um, then we have breast short here. Also full ensemble with four so and trumpets or from forces? Well, staccato. And they come in both of these second port years of take a look here basically playing stabs. This is Oh, so this is stabs in Holderness, sometimes octave. So let's take a listen to that first. So basically pulling the corporation with Harmonists So two notes all the time here and then in the ending, which I often do add some faster rhythms and then finishing with a stuck out instead of Let's see, yeah, I thought it was shorter, but anyway, ah or longer. I mean, you could do it, Marco, doing the end if you wanted to for accent there and the trumpets are basically mimicking the same pattern. But on a single don't. I generally generally more often used trumpets on single loads personally on the higher know to make it more piercing compared to just the steps here. If I had trumpets, listen what happens and no So that takes care of the higher harmony off the breast ebbs. And then finally, I have choir short Ah, with women here, which is played by Let's see Storm Quiet. Two women stuck out those So it sounds like this. Yeah, no. And I think it's also isn't me making the brass shorts. Let's say if we take both of those it is not but pretty similar. So basically playing the harmonic progression with Harmonists well, to know Thomas and in with the rhythm, let's check what the percussion does at the same time. So the pro Kachin plus the choir so the main accents. They are really low compared to the percussion because I don't really want the required to be to present in the mix. So that's it for the rhythm group. Let's take a look at the complete rhythm on the rhythm, not percussion. How it looks in the piano roll Suman. So this is the rhythm. Ah, in fact, let's do you play through off on Lee the rhythm by looking at the funeral way. Let's move on to the low end or based group, whatever you want to call it. So the main baseline iss basically sub bases seems base and a three year three bass played as one um so let's take a listen to that so it looks like this. So it's basically ah, the main accents on Baby, I think this is mimicking the low strings. Where do we have them? This kind of live here, but in with a baseline so Let's listen to that. Yep. So pretty low in the mix. Just have some polls in the low end. Um and then I have low strings and low breasts in unison. And those play the baseline, but with long sustained notes. So, like, this kind of low in the makes us well, because I don't want to overwhelm the low end. So in total duo win sounds like this, but one important factories we've go in here and take a look at first velocity. But more importantly, here is the dynamic curve of the base, which increasing, increasing. So it actually is higher here. Safe can play here, and then it gets higher and higher throughout this section or each operation out there. So let's take a final look at what we have here in the baseline. So this is the same note, of course, but an octave Ah, I think. Let's see if we can play. Yeah, so that's hidden behind. But basically here since unison here, Subasic here of the pulse here, while the strings and brass bases in octave higher. There's units and again, some variation there, but basically it's pretty simple moving on to the back group, which I could wish which are playing. Let's see how it sounds like it's on Lee played by soft strings. Um, enormous fair, by the way, let's take a look at the low end first. What instruments did I use here? So the Sabbath is all nous. Fear of U sub base patch baseline from almost here, too. It's the, um CS 80 big and warm, the sub basis cold to your minimum of deep cream from trillion, in fact. And then I have this three or three sint foresee on baseline from the 16 groups without to take care of the baseline, the low strings or from a flotus lush strings. Basically full strings patch. But I played in low end and the low brasses from four. So is to bus right, so that's the low end instruments. Now get back to the back group where I have a soft strings, which is basically India acoustic pad hold would studio string section and then sells tusk two strings really soft, delicate strings as a so tastic articulation from Venice. Modern strings. So these just playing the core progression in Harmonists Onley two notes. At the same time, more of a background pad, that kind of thing while and it is. I think this is a mimic tear. Let's take a look, an octave indifference. But so task to here. Let's bring in the so strings again. So it adds that high, she mirroring delicate touch to it. That's the back groups to pretty simple. The front is basically the leading melody played on strings. Let's take a look at what we have. Ah, flatters lush strings keys which patch here, which plays like this. And I have, of course, which is really important modulation for the dynamics here. So and I also have ah difference between depending on what velocity level I have on the notes plays like this on its layer. It's layered with breasts from four. So again cuts out four. So breast fooling samba patch. So all in all, both of themselves, like this. You hear it? Yep. It fills up the depth there in the front, and so that's the front group. Finally, I have a group where I have an entire orchestral set up. What did I use here in this case? Well, I have a piano pash actually playing the leading melodies Samos the strings as to just hurt . So it sounds like this, and it is from addictive key studio Grand Pash. And if we take a listen to that with the front group, so it basically adds some focus in the melody. And then I have some harmonies on the chill owes. Actually, now that I hear it, it sounds like it's playing a unison or the melody or unoccupied blow. Yeah, it's unison just feeling it up to make it thicker. Layering is always important that I have second violence, also an octave higher. So again, simple but melody. But together it really builds up that from bones as well. On then high f have Ah, let's see what we have here. The cello saw from cinematic strings to the first violins, synthetic strings to second violins are flatters seeing a move Violins, lo gatto and from bones from yep for so you guessed it. I think the second violence or no, they play the same thing. And then in the end of the melody, I have, ah, basic. It's actually somewhat important because take a listen to what happens. I go from Low Goto to let's see these staccato notes in the NSO. Listen from here, some clicking there from my computer. But basically that is what the percussion and rhythm group does this well in the end here. So listen from here that so that is the orchestral group and all together again. It might look like much, but now that if seeing the end result and seen everything, it goes together well because they respect the rhythm, the main accents. The main beat is always respected throughout the composition, with all the notes, even the melodic notes. You can, for example, include the main accents to make sure of those arm or elevated in the mix, that's engines off fire for you. 8. Live Example Stronger than Steel: this cinematic action music example I call Stronger Than Steel Onda. It's actually a very high contrast in the first section. Go to this show, drop here and then full own action over here. So let's take a listen first and then dive in through each of these sections. Playing in 321 All right, so let's start by checking out the entire arrangement in the piano roll editor. So let's see how much we consuming. Like So, um, again, Here you see the big contrast super focused, be tear with it like a dropping between. I have a kind of drone here, something I don't remember if this is a based hit or something. But you can clearly hear that that at that up we got that at that, have we? And then the drop, um, and then going into super High, an intersection where I had lots of percussion. So let's go through it. Ah, one by one, Let's open up the fix section first on Dhere. I have yet it was booms in between. So these sounds basically kind of sub drop booms really characteristic sound and in the end , kind of an impact there to mark the ending. And then here I have a downer effect with subgroup basically like so in one octave subgroup . That's the effects section now. The most important in actual music, as always, is the percussion. So first, the epic ah, drums. Let's see. We can bring those out, which is damaged. Armageddon is Selma patches. Always. Then I have an acoustic drum kit here from actually the logic drunken designer Onda Um Then I have the big drums, which is giant promise from action strikes Tyco's or from the Sea. Tyco Creator. A really cool plug in for designing your own Tyco kit. Then I have, like a pals from cinematic guitars. Infinity here. So it's basically one note holding here where are born it? And then it creates the pulsed. When I have these Tom's from the damage against EU Tom's stick. Ah, and there's some steaks from damage again. Cymbal crashes from addictive drums, too. On this, this is Shaker from Schumer say shake strike. So that's Ah, what's easier? Minutes and sounds are used here. Let's take a listen now to the main accidents first, which creates basically the fundamental beat like so and then the big drums really marks the main accents together with the epic drums. Then let's stack on the Tyco's. It was really the epic drums from Damage with the big drums for the main accidents, and the titles here creates the main beat. Like so on, you can hear it super focused because it has a breeze off air in between There for every other bar. Of course, Cymbal crashes like so on. Most every fourth board seems here, except the ending there. And then the swells. They're going into the second bar, basically swells or, like adviser great for introducing a new section on. Then these shakers just adding some extra. I drive to their on. If we go into the track, Inspector, who can see? Hear that I have a fat effects to fatten up and the main drum make it, uh, basically more beefy. Have it on the big drums as well. Um, let's see on where it's the groove track. Didn't I have a good track? Oh, come on, the wrong. We're over here, So let's take a listen to what that does. This is the cinematic towards infinity, A rhythmic loop like so and then it goes full on in the second time there, and Tom's comes in where the fill in the drop basically spicing up the groove there than the stick. It's here. What kind of syncopated 16th note. Ah, pattern you see here and then the Cymbal crashes, which comes in. It's not actually in the first part because I wanted heard high, shimmering energy in the second part. And, of course, the State Shaker then. So let's listen to all the percussion whips again. Here we are. Listen to that focus, basically layering everything, and then this is now the on. Especially if we add the Sabra appear, you will get the focus on the big drop on. As you can hear, the acoustic drums comes in, by the way, here, first with the field and why does it sound? So thing you might ask? It's because look at this. What I done it cut everything from 200 herds with the 24 db per octave cut their why? Well, because I already have low drums. I don't want to stack those. I just want to add some more complex energy. If I remove that and played from here now, doesn't have nearly the energy as with the accusing drum kit playing this fast rhythm here . So let's take a look at the Christie grounds, by the way, especially these ride Cymbal pattern here created lots of energy. All right. Moving on to the rhythm section where we first have the main a staccato pattern here with Venice, modern strings sport and close mikes on Lee To really get that short sounds if I can wait on its own on Did you see the air in between the notes here? So these are actually the main accents on the big percussion. If I bring that up again, especially these big drums here. If we take a look at those at the same time as this, you see those three accents there and then those two or mimicked here on the higher strings , that's what you how you get focus and energy and power stacking at the same on the same beats eso that's the rhythm. And then it goes mawr because here you have the air in between. And then after the drop, it goes all in with this. The main beat here, then some a eight notes here and then this pattern Here you hear those chromatic intervals which really adds tension and energy. Then we have the base short strings played by Noval Low insolvable strings Great focused, more co toes. So again, the main beat You see it here? Let's see Which one is it? I still hear the percussion. I only want to hear with bass strings like so but again down. But Dad and that is the main beat in the low percussion on that is layered with shell shallows from cinematic strings to so is if you check here is just a knock Dave above But it really adds to the focus. Then what takes over is actually violas and violins for the second section Because I wanted to go up higher with more energy here. So these are also cinematic strings. Both of them, Um, if we go there and take a look at those two at the same time late in Oak saves on these chromatic tt tt TT Let's take a listen to it at the same time. So that's semi note Interval the chromatic step There really abstention, especially if you listen to the shops. I got the strangest, which plays more fuller Beach. So all of these together really high tension, which is great for cinematic action music. Then I for the brass, I have the breast rhythms. I have these steps, which is four. So it's for Sato. Articulation, Onda trumpets or stock. Otto's also form from four. So and they may make the same s the chill owes and based rings, I believe so. Let's take a listen to them. Yeah, so those are Let's now for sun the accent and the trumpets Only the high note Oh, that was really low. I could probably increase that. But anyway, together and here they get me with more intense and are actually different. So let's take a listen to them on you See here stated that semi note. Ah, step here again. We're layered with the violas, violence and short strings to really create attention. Um, that is it for the rhythm section. Let's move on to the low end on where I only have this baseline. So no strings or anything. It just the sub base from trillion. This patch, the baseline from almost heresy is 80 big and warm, and this three or three Foshan, all of those they year together, which creates this. And of course it is the main accents, which you heard from the big drums on the low strings earlier earlier, and in the back from Europe, I actually only have these pad, which is a string pad from Novo. Ah, very. I think it's a rhythmic, passionless listen, which really adds a lot of atmosphere. If you especially you don't really hear that much in them. The big contrasts focus section. But when those drop out and leave air, you've really hear it in the mix, which adds atmosphere. I could probably if I wanted you. It seems they are. It's not really that audible. I could cut it up and Onley have it in every other bore where there is silence. I should probably do that by, but I just give you that as a tip now is that and I actually have it in the end as well as the finishing line, because it's becoming like a characteristic sound off the atmosphere off the track. So that is it. Let's take all this final listen through the track while we check the piano roll to see what's going on in here. Can I still be in a bit more like So? I wonder if I can actually assuming. And it will follow like this Playing in 321 All right. So that Waas Ah, what it called stronger than steel. And also, if you want to know, it's in a minor, let's say And the temple here is 1 40 The previous one was 1 50 But as always, how you play is also very important. So the high energy section here with a super fast percussion really makes the second port super energetic and action character while still on Lee having 140 bpm. 9. Assignment Sound Instinct: congratulations. You have now learned the cool fundamentals and power off epic cinematic music as well as Gold Live examples, including my creative and practical insights over each composition. Now it's time for your final assignment off this module, which I call sound instinct, because in order to learn and master the creation off epic cinematic music, you will have to develop a good ear and creative instinct for how this style of music sounds. When doing these exercise, don't just listen to the music. Make sure to listen with attention and analyze everything that is going on. The Temple Key time singer harmonies, sounds, playing styles arrangement, emotion, curve and so one. So open up your favorite music streaming service, and I will now give you a list of great examples of composers, artists and labels that all have amazing epic cinematic music that you can use for your sound instinct. Assignment. Two Steps from Hill, Thomas Bergersen, Nick Phoenix, Hans Zimmer, Audie Machine, Gothic Storm and Colossal Trailer Music. All right, that should get you started. Now go ahead and do this exercise to truly become familiar with his style moved and character off epic cinematic music. And then let's continue your journey in the next video 10. Powerful Percussion: one of the key elements, often epic cinematic music. Template is a very powerful percussion section, not only standard orchestra percussion but augmented with powerful hybrid sounds and processed, sound design based percussion parts. So to demonstrate this, I will show you this little example. I composed where these three tracks, layered on top of each other, creates a really powerful percussion mix. The first track ISMM, or Natural Authentic Orchestra percussion, where I used a orchestral percussion STX in Superior Drummer three. The next track is epic percussion, very processed sound where I used in this case, the studio or me getting an ensemble in damage. And then I actually added an acoustic drum kit just for the crash Cymbals to augment the accents. So let me demonstrate them one by one. First, let's solo this and check out the natural authentic orchestra percussion first, right? It sounds really nice and organic and dynamic, but it really isn't powerful enough for epic cinematic music. And the reason I use the method of layering like this is because you get the depth dynamics and organic sound off the national authentic percussion with the heavy processed sound off the epic percussion in this case, it sounds like this. So that is the epic percussion. Ah, however, I went even farther by adding a plug in to add some compression saturation, transient design and you can do whatever you want. Adding some separation and heavy compression can really make the sound even mawr epic and processed. However, on its own, it might become too much. It's really you really hear that greet on distortion in it. But if you layer it with the dynamic orchestral percussion, it gets the best of both worlds. And of course you can, del in how much great and distortion you want, of course, in the epic percussion layer. And then I use this classic acoustic drum kit just for the crash crash Cymbals, which are really to drum room me. I want them in the hole so and also I want them or aggressive. So I added first some saturation distortion and then it was added some concert hall reverb on top of it, which makes it sound like this, right? And that in total get you this sound. So now we have the organic dynamic depth of the national world, authentic percussion, the heaviness off the sound design pro sis tits. And then I augmented the accents with acoustics. Crash Cymbals you can. You can augment the access, even Mawr if you want, with sub booms or whatever. But what I also like dealing with a powerful percussion in epic cinematic music is adding some processing effects on the bus itself. So what I like to do is add a compressor with you can do go all in, but you can use quite a lot of compression. But in pair riddle processing, so peril compression means that you blend the UN compressed dynamic signal with the heavily processed, compressed sound. So not all compressors have this feature about if you have a mix noble, um, on your compressor. I really recommend you to experiment with this, so if you have it on 100% you will get the 100% output of the compressed sound. If you have it on 0% it will be like having this turned off. But in the middle, in my opinion, you get the best of both worlds, and that is why peril compression is so powerful. So let's take wisdom without right and now, with listen to have how heavy and processed and epic the sound is, but still has that dip, right? And if you want to go even further with shaping the overall percussion mix, um, if we turn off the compressor and use this plug in instead, here I have added some saturation, meaning the harmonic distortion, compression and a character to make it more fat. So without and with so overall, you can go Maurin depth with the added processing and effects in epic cinematic music. It doesn't have to have if we go back this lame or not laying but this weak, thin, um, sound off the genuine, authentic orchestral percussion that service well for classical music. And when you don't really want the percussion to be heavily focused in the mix. But for epic music, you really want to go all in and beat up and get something like this. Let's listen to it while we watch the media. So that's it. That is powerful percussion in epic cinematic music 11. Ostinato Strings: the key driving force off most epic music is the modern standard for energy in the cinematic music, the Austin autos, which are practically always focused on the various string instruments off the orchestra. In epic music, you can often use look off layers off these Austin autos, so Austin Auto strings have way more versatility, flexibility and variation than many composers might first think. So instead of doing something super simple like this, you can add different kind of rhythm. So it doesn't even have to be straight like this one and two employees and food, and you can add silence into the groove and make. You can add harmonies by doing intervals like arpeggios or harmonic and layers like on it all comes together when you add it up in several layers, as I have done here in these demonstrations. So let me play. It is first. Well, let me go through the layers, in fact, so I have in samba will short strings playing, um, the courts on the accented beats and then some harmonies and stuff in between. Then low strings, of course. The main accents made strings. Hi strings and an extra high string layer an octave above this adds the intensity and drive to retool. And finally, I have added, as on the group bus, this, um, effect plug in were at saturation, meaning harmonic distortion, some compression and character on fat. So again, in epic music, in most cases, you should be very careful using saturation and compression and stuff like that own strings , since these are very dynamic and natural sounding instruments. But in epic music you can go a bit further than usual. So all in all it sounds like this. Let's check the media at the same time when we listen. 321 So lots of intensity, loss of energy and drive, but also, ah, the main accents really provide that authority in the tone and the main groove. So let's break this up by going through each track on its own. So what can you do with ostinato strings? Well, of course, as I just played, you can do some straight dr just for the Energy and add the accents in the low end like eso won or add some groove and bounce to it. Um, and if I go into this track, let's leave the supercharger own So here I have seen phobia on speak captors or speak after or stir capital strings in variations work really well for this, but so it and check what I've written. So this is basically the main groove. I like to lay down the main groove on insolvable shoulder strings first, and ah, there is lots, all variations in dynamics, higher in the end, high. Lauder's here in the end, as you can hear. So let's take a listen to. So that is the variation. Let's see, you might want to have the some variation in Ah, the timing of the notes. If you record it on your own, make sure to keep some of that variation. Um, see if it sounds better now that really accented groove at the end. Ah, and then I usually have low strings on its own, just marking the accents. So here I have more kowtow instead, I think this is from let's say, novo, um, low in Psalm bill strings. And then I have needed string so we can go up to via low or something. I actually have ah, assemble strings. Speak out of here, playing this more fast pattern here, Run you style pattern. You really need to make sure when you do rhythmic pores that it'll sink up not only the accents and the main groove, but also the playing style. So as you can see, it's faster here. And then I lay down more simple accents in the end, which or mimic tear by changing the pattern in the this track here and the other ones as well. So ah, let's go to the high strings, which is played by violas here, the first high strings taken, of course, layer this and label there must by all those violence his own. But here we have this pattern going on, and I've used, like, the accidents here and then, like straight groove. And then this is run here and then changed up in the and something that you might want to check here. What ah idea Here is the main accents. If you check those on. Yeah, it's the same here on the low strings or the insulted strings. Let's check the low at the same time as this one. There, you can see that I've used double notes except on those accidents were single knows because then the silence in there will make it more pronounced like this accent in the groove. And then finally, I have, ah, shorts, things ah, knocked up, which is violence here, in this case, cinematic strings to playing again double notes in this fashion. Let's see what we have. I actually want to dial down a bit, so I get some variation and let's listen to it in solo. It sounds like this right Sounds nice, except I in custody arised. I haven't mistake right here. It should be like that. Let's listen from here. Right. So that is Ah, the final high layer. And that is what What you're going to focus on when you create ostinato strings in your music layers or your best friend and you can even go so ah, deep that you lay your even low short strings with another patch of low short strings to make it even more powerful And finally adding some extra situation and bit of compression you can dow in Parral compression if you want was in fact try that as well. So if you add a compressor here, put it here on top with remove that Let's put this on a studio compressor. I'm not sure of the settings, but I'm just kind of duality. See what happens. Okay, so I can go a bit further here. Let's try something like that. Limiter the end just to see that it doesn't clip s Oh, that is a bit too much. You need to Del this into taste. Of course you can. Even with peril compression, you can ago Teoh much and have too much compression on on orchestras compared to you. So something like this, a couple of db of compression will or as I did earlier, using more light compression but without its saturation to beef up the sunken going even further here because comfort I'd rather add some more saturation and character. Then do too much compression on even if even though these are short strings, these Austin order strings or something like this is right. That was nice. I think I would be to four with the saturation. You could hear some great coming through in the in the ostinato strings there. But you have to dial this into what suits to your particular epic music composition. So that is one of the main sounds in epic cinematic music. Ostinato strings 12. Driving Pulses: Aside from the ostinato string ports, any other type of driving pals is very common in epic cinematic music such as passing since Sounds, baselines, or PIDIO owes gated rhythms and various rhythmic sound effects. Now here I have prepared a couple of examples of various styles off driving pulses, some of the more common, in my opinion, starting with a base pals, meaning a baseline, which can be a synthesizer, an acoustic or electric bass or some kind of a hybrid engine. So I went with this 303 style synthesizer, which I programmed this baseline for, which sounds like this you can hear it is kind of thin and weak, which is because a 33 or three synth has most being used for higher age. Your type of dr. But a solution you can use for this is to simply add a bass amp on it and drive up up the base register. And it can sound like this and so one. So that's a a baseline, one of the more fundamental driving pulses in music. Then I used what I call a pals synth, which is basically a short pluck, your type of sound and I've used all Miss Fear, my favorite synthesizer for this particular, um, Paul's here. So as you can hear, it's only octaves shifting. Here s so basically the higher octave becomes an accent in this case. And to make it again, mawr deepen low end. I added a bass amp similar to only three or three synth bass. So in this case, you get and you can also use a delay for to add more rhythmic variation in the driving pulse. So in total, get this. So, of course, adding reverb or delay in the low and you have to be really careful to not muddy up the mix . So what you can do with if you use a delay is to actually add a filter to it a low cut so that the delay output does not have any off the deep, low wind in it. So that is one tip Ah, the next one. So we have a base types into parts a synth powers in this case, it it became or of a baseline as well. But of course, you can have it higher if you want, like this or, uh, how you prefer. Let's move it down an octave again. Ah, Then for the next type of driving powers, I call it a high house. And this can, of course, be something you play in with notes or in this case, use some kind of rhythmic effect on in your instrument so you can see it's simply a long sustained note. But with the added, it uses an ORP aviator just to add some drive this motion here so it ends up like this so you can add some kind of shimmery clicky type owls, for example, on the high rate in the high range, the next one I called Redick soundscape, which can be a drone, a ambient texture pad or whatever. Um, that you also apply a rhythmic effect on either in the instrument itself. Massie I'm using. Oh, by the way, I'm actually using an instrument that is focusing on rhythmic groups like this again. It's simply a one note Ah, in the sequencer. But it sounds like this. So it's basically a tonal focused, but also has driving rhythmic pals in it. Um, the next one is pad on Dhere. I use an external effect, which is called step effect, which is a kind of rhythmic gate effect. So there are various in certificate you can use for this. I just use this stock insert effecting logic, which is basically a programmable, dreamy gate effect. So without it, you get this cord pads. Ah, but when I step effect, it becomes like this. And finally ah, very classic Wait. Add Powell's driving pals to Music IHS or videos, which you can either again programming note by note or use in ORP aviator effect, either in the instrument or as an external effect. In this case, I used an instrument called Food Strike, which has, or Peggy ation built in, and this is actually focused on various types off. Ah, tuned percussion like silo phone mallets and so on. So it sounds like this. So it is the same corporation as I used on the gated pad there, and I actually made sure that all of these use the same harmonic progression so I can play everything in total, which is pretty dense in the mix. But just to give you an idea of how important driving Powell's can be in music, so playing everything in three. So that is driving houses in epic cinematic music 13. Lush Strings: massive and lush string sections and insomnia. ALS is the norm off epic music, basically Voyager than life, which means you generally avoid using smaller and more intimate string sections like chamber sizes and smaller room recordings. Make them deep, rich and powerful and your own your way. So I have written this short string arrangement here to demonstrate for you. But first I'm gonna let you know about what I consider the three main aspects off strings in epic cinematic music. So, first, of course, it's the actual arrangements. Or if you check here, this covers a lot of range, which will make it sound bigger and more powerful. The second aspect is the actual tonal character, meaning the richness and depth off the sounds. So instead of using solar or small in Psalm Bols, you can go for if he opened up the main theme here. Lush strings, which are bigger in Psalm bulls and using lots of microphones and so on to really make the sound thick and rich. And finally, of course, we have the dynamics. So especially the main theme you wanted ride in the higher dynamic levels to really make it forceful and impactful. so and also another thing. It a bonus. Tip it. What I usually do is to add a sub base on to really augment boost that low end that low strings play. Um, because in epic music you really want to have a fat deep and powerful though, and and even the best low range orchestral basis doesn't really reach that final lowest range the sub base range of music. So let me play you everything right now and check the media as we do. So this is a sound rush strings which you can use in epic cinematic music and one thing you can immediately notice. Ah, here in the automation is that strings. It is extremely important that they move in curves that they have motion in the dynamics like this because strings basically breathe life into your music. And if you listen Teoh, all of the sub based on its own, I have another bonus tip for you is whatever you use as this our base. I just went with a very filtered Ah, analog synths like this. See, what you can do is automate expression for it so that you can actually add dynamic variation into the sub base itself. So if the strings go to the lowest dynamics, the subs will not just be static, but moving as well as you can see right here. All right, so that is lush, rich and deep strings in epic cinematic music. 14. Big Brass: Bresse in epic music tends to be on the warmer boulder and deeper range, not the bright, sharp attack and fast rhythmic tie bra's that is common for adventure style music, for example. Instead, you tend to use big breasts sections with a long, sustained notes and harmonies. And for the leading melody and main theme, a big French horn section is practically always present now. Big and bold breath is pretty similar to rush and rich strings in a big cinematic music, meaning you focus on a big arrangement covering a lot of range higher dynamics. As you can see. If we check the modulation down here, you see even more forceful, I will to say than the strings Onda, also with breasts I find that can use a bit of saturation to add more fat. I used this plug into a situation like compression and some warm character on even some compression here, which he should be really careful on strings. But I found you can use it beat Mawr off it on brass. In fact, if you want a super powerful vibe and I also added some extra reverb, whole reverb on top of it and really make it sound deeper and space here in the mix. So let's listen to it all while we butch what happens here in the Midi playing in 321 right , Right. So what you can see ah directly here is that well, the velocity, the dynamic values of the notes or kind of high here But you see a gradual increase in intensity here. Even though we have variation, you have these gradual increase and then the cadence it ah diminishes in volume here in love nous so another thing with breasts I find that it is extremely important to change up the articulations. So are used long notes here. Then I use poor total which is make basically ah longer more co two type notes, extended notes and then finish with the crescendo Articulation here. So if you just listen to resemble the French horns, you hear that becomes way more interesting with that variation in articulations. Another really important aspect when you program or right breast or woodwinds is especially brass. It's very very. It takes a little force and breath. Teoh blow the breast instruments, especially the lower ones. So make sure to include gaps because it becomes more authentic on your music will also automatically get more air to breathe between the notes, it actually makes more difference. There's a little detail than some composers might know. So if you check it in here, I've eating even longer gaps here because I wanted these poor Toto extent that notes to come through sadly, the gaps that that Ah, in the end, if you take a listen from here right, it really makes a huge difference. So what used to think of as well is again, like strings, juice bigger and Sobel type patches and also ah, cover the full range of breath. So I have to bust of always bass, trombones, French horn, Ah, brass and sambal patch, in fact, here to make it even a thicker and then teen or teen, or what is go teen or trombones off the higher trombones? I didn't use any trumpets in this case because, well, basically, for epic cinematic music. As you could hear from this and see here it focuses more on the low, where range and warmer tonal range, and not really the higher aspect. Alessi use rhythmic press on trumpet since a one so that you get that deep reaching bulled , authoritative vibe off the breast. So that's it. It's big breasts in epic cinematic music. 15. Huge Choirs: big choirs have a way of increasing the power and intensity off any music, which is why they are used a lot in epic music generally, nonsense laughed in, or Slavonic phrases were even simple. Vowels sustains as long as the final sound is deep, powerful and epic. So when using choirs in epic cinematic music, it's basically the same thing as were the strings and breath meaning a big, powerful and huge sound. And there are basically two variations of the choir's used. The 1st 1 is sustained notes here on choirs, and the second is rhythmic choirs with short articulations. So I made these two examples, first with the long notes and as you can see, a using male choir as well as a female choir to really extend the range off the final arrangement here. So you can also see that I use lots off dynamic motion here with dynamic curves about generally going up towards the higher section in the Christian does. So let's take a listen to how it sounds, But first, let's see what I use. Ah, in this case, I use Olympus choirs. Morse for the men and actually here are used in mixed choir are forgot about that. So this is actually the higher end here with sustained vowel sounds that is the most common to use, by the way, for long notes. So let's take a listen while we watch in the media at the same time playing in 321 and you may have noticed a very particular thing is if we watched the meet again here. These gaps here it's basically the same thing as wind instruments, brass and woodwinds. Um, humans need to breathe, so you need to add some places, some gaps in between the phrases here so that in the vocalists actually get time to breathe . But also, it adds again, some sense of air into the performance. So these little gaps actually become port over the full performance on Let's Go Ahead and check the short rig Nick choirs and in this case, are used storm quietly but both for men and women. And I used the stack mode, which basically layers up the voices to make it even bigger. And a bunch of these microphones and I even used a supercharger to boost some with some saturation and slide compression and some character here on both the female shorts and the male shorts we'll acquire here. So in the May require, I went for a fat character with more situation in the female quieter, a bright character. Well, slightly less saturation. So let's listen to this at the same time as we watch the maybe can get the full performance playing in 321 And again, you can see very high dynamics for the complete Ah performance here. And finally, I actually added, which he heard here some extra v Vermont Hope. I'm using spaces by East West and this whole priest to really make them even mawr rich and deep in the mix. Right? So that is another off the main sounds of epic cinematic music, huge choirs. 16. Fast Woodwinds: woodwinds have become somewhat neglected and forgotten in epic cinematic music, but they can still provide a lot off energy if used for fast rhythmic passages, tension building trills and classic scale runs and or videos you can even use short, not articulations on woodwinds. Four. Austin Ordell's So here I have created a couple of examples off some of the more common ways to use wood wins when you, in fact use woodwinds in epic cinematic music. So the 1st 1 is called Runs, which can be a scale run or or pidio run so it can go like this up, down, up, down. As in this case or down, up. Those are the most common ways to use a run, and it can sound something like this. The seat in the media and he can be faster, slower. Go to Octavius instead of one, as in this case, and so one so you can experiment with adding runs just on flair and energy as it feels in your music. So the next one is rhythmic woodwinds, which in most cases is to note hormones or cords. Just as books like this one on it can sound something like this thing. So for epics in uniting music, of course, you've rarely used wood wins on their own like this, but you can use it as a layer with circa two strings for Sandell brass or other rhythmic instruments. The next example I have is classic, or pidio is so accord broken up like this, and the final example is actually using woodwinds as the type of ostinato more commonly again as a layer on top of the strings. So would wins actually can play very, very short notes, um, which makes them good for rhythmic writing and adding energy and flair like this. The only way I would use solo woodwinds or for lyrical and melody phrases is to create contrast to the big, huge and bold sounds that that power to your epic cinematic music. So that is it woodwinds used as I call first woodwinds. You can call them rhythmic or energetic woodwinds if he want. In epic cinematic music, 17. Deep Piano: pianos are always common in cinematic music. On In epic music, they tend to be very deep and ambient orphan on the softer, warmer range. In tone, he often used lots of reverb to add space and sometimes delay in epic music. They mainly play very minimalistic ports, sometimes even a simple as block chords or octaves in the lowland. And if they play melodies, it is usually very sparse and often just as an extra layer on top of the main leading instrument. So here I have created three different examples off how to use pianos in epic cinematic music. I simply call them cinematic piano, ambient piano and magic piano. So the first example here I use key escape, and it is what I call cinematic pianos a very dark, warm or soft tone and color and votes of reverb and a long river of time so it can sound like this. Let's watch in the sequencer as we play way, so the way you use pianos, in most cases, all for influence to create. That, though, were dynamics and deep, rich sound, or as contrast compared to the big, bold power sounds and instruments, or sometimes as layers to movement what other ports are playing. So the next kind of piano I called ambient piano, which is basically kind of atmospheric sound, sign or pad like piano. In this case, I'm using library call Ascend by Heavy Ah City, which is very focused on the sound design pad like character. And I simply playbook course like this. And you can think of this as in the style of, for example, interstellar soundtrack by host. Similar. So you can sound like this, uh, so again very soft on very deep, but also that rich pad like soundscape and air atmospheric character with long sustained courts like this. On the final example, I called Magic Piano, which is basically playing in melodic line, often as a layer on top of another instrument, for example, playing the motif for main theme. In this case, I use the piano focused on more higher harmonics, and it's called Una Corridor by native instruments, and it can sell like this, right? So those are three common ways to deuce piano in epic cinematic music 18. Authority Sustains: epic music is full of what I categorize as authority sustains sounds like Brams bells, pings, power courts and so on. Basically long sustained sounds that ring out, which creates a sense off authority and power so authorities sustains, might be one of the most important types of sounds or singer sounds for epic cinematic music. So basically it is the these balls, long powerful sustains of various types of instruments, sounded side effects and the parts that really add authority to a specific point in your composition. So I have created these examples here off some of the most common types of authorities sustains. So let me start without what I call Power Piano, which is basically oak tapes playing like this, um, antique unsound above you. By the way, let me check what I used to its maverick with quite a little spaces, softer tone, but really high dynamics here So it can sound something like this. So you can imagine this week, for example, long more Qatar, though strings on top of this as a layer, and you really get that sense, authority and bold power. Ah, and then you can add Austin order strings or whatever on top if you want energy. So that is power piano that low end bass basically. And then what I called ping piano, which is in the top range, is dead also octaves like this and you can use even mawr reverb on top. So I have massive amounts of extremely long reverb on this. So it best it becomes this kind of bell type she ambushed, simmer in ah, the high range. And you will hear that a lot in trailer music, in fact, especially in intros. Then, of course, the classic guitar power cord, which I added a guitar rig, S and AMP. On it, some extra reverb to put it back in the mix. And I also capital Oh, and and some of the high range that I didn't need. So it concerned like this you might even exported as audio and like, um or recorders already, in fact, and faded out. So it has the most attack in the beginning and then fades out. Then we get into the classic Brem that basically host Simmer was the first to make popular in inception. I believe it has become a staple sound in epic cinematic music. So There's basically two variations of this scene. And if ICS, Brams and Brown has made form organic instruments, rial instruments, basically breast is the most common one. So for ethics Brams, you can use various types of sun libraries that have different kinds of brands on different notes like eso won. So then you just lay out one note in the key you want and get so as you can hear, very gritty, distorted type of sound. Just have that long sustain Onda. And then we have the breast version. I again used octaves, but here I like to very your different breasts libraries on top of each other. So I have seen phobia breath and Sam belong Notes Force A with Port Otto articulation for that short attack and then parrot here with sustains and altogether. And by the way, I start on high demand dynamics can even start on the top, in fact, and then go down so it can sound like this eso that's brassica and, of course, combined sound effect. And since based press with okay acoustic instrument type breasts and finally the authorities final authorities sustained type sound off these most common ones is a bill. And actually, you don't have to use a though deep bill. It can just be any bill because it has that residents the long residence after you hit it, that creates authority or its own. But I actually used tubular bells. Ah, from Let's see, I think it's palette again. Yes, so just a long, sustained, resonant sound, almost like a church bill. So something like this. And if you add that in sync with it important an accent or bore in your composition. Civil add instant authority, right? So that is authority sustains in epic cinematic music. 19. Epic Hits: you simply cannot have a pick. Music without a pickets, massive impacts, powerful and layered percussive hits and heavily processed sound design effects or used a lot in epic music. However, epic eights does not necessarily have to be percussive on Lee. You can also use big orchestral stabs and more co toes for an equal effect, especially for layering with those massive percussive accents. Now off course, Epic Eights is very closely related to epic music, and basically it comes in two different main flavors. Percussive epic eights and tonal. A pickets and I have two examples off each here. So the first category is what I call impacts, which can be low booms, explosions, heavy impact type sounds. And it can sound something like this. That is it just three different versions off the impact sounds. So in this case, I'm using a library called Damage With a Priest. It's called exploding course. So as you can hear very high impact type sounds, there are also low boom seeking use and so on. But that's basically the first category really impactful hits percussive hits. The other category I called punch hits. So instead of this long impact tail explosion impact with long sustain off words. Town sheets is basically similar to collapse storm snares and such but mawr heavily processed sound, sound, design and type of sounds. So in this case, I'm using a library called Evolution, and this can be really good. Teoh augment your main accents in your beat. So if you listen to this this or also three different variations. So as you can hear, it basically has a mix of kick drum, punch, stomp and so on. You can even record your own and mangle with sound design. But the thing is, it has this snappy, punchy, kind kind of characters, so it stops immediately after the hit. So those are two very common styles. Off epic. It's used in various variations in epic music. The two more common taps off Total epic It's is what I call stabs so it can be big cools or oak tapes with short articulations on. In this case, I think I'm using sin phobia. As you can see, lots of layers string staccato breast to Catelyn, so on. So you end up with something like So if I just played fast, it's a stab type of sound, but it has a tonal centre on. Those are also used a lot in epic music. So let's take a listen to this. I just have these cords here as the steps, two variations of those and then something I call strikes, which is basically tonal, percussive type of sounds, which can be in fact tuned percussion in some cases. Or, for example, in this case, I'm using bore Talk Pittsy cattle, which is basically pizzicato that is so hard on the cello or strings that it hits the body off the cello, violin and so on, which creates this kind of sound, so that can be very good accent type of sound. So if you listen to this exalted kind of similar to the stabs but even more precast available in between percussion and tonal stab basically, so that's it that is epic. It's in epic cinematic music 20. Strong Motion: a pick. Cinematic music use a lot of bull, dynamic motion and contrast to add more power by motion. I am mainly referring to dynamic curves and intensity changes like crescendos, diminuendo, those swells and orcs, bold movement and motion or super effective ways to add powerful expression on, therefore a staple in all cinematic music. Now buy movement the most essential motion in music East, with the dynamics meaning the level and intensity over the notes and ports so you can go upwards in intensity and dynamics, which is a Christian dough. The opposite direction going lower in dynamics is a diminuendo. You can move in orcs, being going up and then down and swells similar. But you can shape the current more and so one. And I'm going to demonstrate a couple of different examples here to show you these inaction . Because in epic music there should be lots of movement. As you can see here, from the modulation off the dynamics and sometimes with some sample libraries and instruments that are actually aortic lake articulations, you conduce for this. I have used the crescendo. As you can see here, swell is another articulation here, and there were orcs and some instruments. The problem with these is that the timing meaning the length off the articulation is pre recorded. It can sound more national, but it might be hard to sync it up to your actual track. So if you go into here, you can see that the there is no recorded modulation off the dynamics here. Instead, it is written in into the very articulation. So if I said this to sustain, it is simply these courts here with a static dynamic. And now, if I switch it to, for example, a crescendo, you will hear. But as you heard there, the sounds super nice and national. However, it ended somewhere around here, so it can be tricky to line up depending on the timing and so on in your actual composition . Let's do this well here as well. You can hear how this sounds like, so basically it's well is a crescendo and diminuendo. Um, it's similar to an arc as well. Now I have also done these manual image, but is what I prefer. So for a big string ensemble in some brass here and a big choir, I've used the same chord progression here and recorded in manually the dynamic motion here . Strong motion meeting going very high Contrast in dynamics. So take a listen to the strings first while we watch everything. So I always prefer this because you can sink how the crescendo diminuendo and the movement a strong motion off dynamics It is time in Joel parts. So I also did the same on the brass. I just voiced the course would be different but again really important to have these strong motion you and again I did it on choirs and the same compression bit differently voiced way. So I also want to give you a bonus tip and that this if you are using these different sections, don't just copy and paste the entire court progression on each Make sure to, for example, use perhaps just three voices on the strings to voices from the corporation in the breath. Ah, and so one for requires to arrange the various voices and also use different velocities here and different motion curves. I was just lazy and draught in I think equal No, not exactly. So this might be a bit low, where it might be timed bit differently on the various sections on the various regions here . So even though they might play the same thing, if you look at the notes, they each have a slightly different motion curve. And that all adds up. And ADM or life to your music. So let me show you this by a mute that and I will go in here and check the strings. Let's make the strings. Take care of the low end. But I will reduced this one. So it has four voices here, and I like the works here. Then go to the brass. I'm going to remove the local. It's Steel Room, the the worst voice on the highest voice. I think so. We have these more close together might even have that. Okay, now it should be there on Let's make it so that it It's like three bores for the Orcs here around there are so that some of that. So it's different motion, like so, um, something like that, and then go to the choirs and do the same here. That's in fact do is really long, like four bores for, um, this motion, like so except ups on the last one here, which goes up and then down. Andi, I will not use the lowest on the and I won't think it will remove that one. That one and that one. So now we have different voicings and different motion. So let's take a listen to it all together. How it sounds while we watch in here everything at the same time. Playing in 32 Well, really nice. So that's it. That is strong emotion in epic cinematic music. 21. Lyrical Solo Parts: even though many sounds in epic cinematic music or big, bold and powerful using barge in Psalm, bols and sections, there is always a place for solo instruments. In fact, this combination will add power by increasing the contrast. The solo performances tend to be very smooth and lyrical. A solo vocal is perfect, but you can also use, for example, a solo flute or violin to add that intimate and rich emotion. So I have three different examples off what I call lyrical solo parts here. It doesn't have to be solo instruments, but basically something that as that intimate romantic characters, which will be high contrast ID to the power and bold sounds of use for the rest of your epic cinematic music. These are great either for an intro, a breakdown or used as a layer to contrast the other big port. So let's listen to the solo flute part. Here First can start something like this. So very, very ah, idyllic sound. Their romantic sound Or it could be, for example, is solo string instrument like a solo violin. By the way, I'm using for this master solo woodwinds here, Andi, from addict and then for the soul of I win. That's the Joshua Bell violin begin. Very ah, lyrical line. This can also be very light piano, For example, if you on through something like that or very often used in epic cinematic music is lyrical vocal parts like this si solo. So again, very important is to use the dynamic range for these parts and also not going as high as the power power spots. Actually, you can see a don't go above the Round 18 these cases because you want to have them remain that intimate sound. And in the final example, this worse actually a consomme below Goto patch. But if you have a solo female or male vocal with good the Gatto Ah, I recommend trying to use that as well, so that is very ical solo ports in epic cinematic music. 22. Ambient Soundscapes: ambient soundscapes can be anything from dork drones to ambience. Pads all the way to atmospheric sound textures off all kinds. Basically, the Background Corp. It that glues it, emotional vibe and character into your music. And this extra layer off depth will work great together with all those epic eights rhythms and pulses that add the energy and intensity to your epic music composition. So here I have three different examples of common ambient soundscapes. Drones, pads and textures. So starting with Jones, you can think of these a similar to a pedal tone on an organ or piano, for example, meaning a the range tonal centre. It can be a Meador high wrench sound as well, but usually it is that low, low end drone that is the main part of the sound. In this case, I'm using, in particular instrument called Rohner, which focuses on this aspect. So it's simply holding out. They note like this for the long duration, which makes that drone type character and, ah, in this particular instruments, you can actually dial in how much of the low, mid and high and effect and movement you've owned. So if you listen to how it sounds now. So as you can hear these works really great as an ambient ah, drone soundscape for underscores. But it can also be present beneath, like a corporate devoted your actual music composition, in most cases that dial down the high end and mid range to focus in more on the low end. So let's take a listen again, of course, use extra reverb effects and shape this with filtering and e queuing. But that's basically it drones. The next type of ambient sound skip that is common for epic music and cinematic music is pads, which in this case is a pared from illness fear. And I'm just using harmonies to know Terminus. I generally send Teoh be careful with loss or voices a notes on pads because they can take up very much room in the mix. So this sounds like so. Leo, very Andean and atmospheric soul for the kinds of pads that use are used for ambient soundscape, has long released very soundscape fishing, the total character and basically a big corporate offs and soft carpet that works as a bed again see much of the drone. In fact, all these ambient soundscapes serve the same type of purpose, even though the past is more on the harmony and drones is about the total center, and the final is that I called textures, which is, in most cases, known totals or, for example, think off the breeze of the window or the sound of ocean waves on the sea, the rustling of the leaves in nature and so on. And, of course, there are sound design and synth based versions of this are using illness fear yet again here. So just holding one note and this sounds like this again works great for that underscore type of texture but also in epic music. It can be in the intro to set the mood for the track, or again, like all these ambient soundscapes as a lay your below everything to glue it together and set that overall character and vibe of your trek. So that is ambient soundscapes in a pick cinematic music 23. Bold Sounds: epic music is mainly about power and authority. A good way to start your epic music template is, therefore to add sounds and instruments into your DW project that are massive and powerful on their own. Like big, bold breasts. A massive string section over the top percussion and a deep low end boosted by sub base epic music is not usually focusing on intimate and light sounds other than for contrast to powerful sounds. A big music is about big and bold sounds that stand out with the rule power. So here I have composed a short example to show you this guideline in action. Let's play it 1st 321 So this is how it looks in the piano roll with all ports selected. And it doesn't have s many voices, as you would imagine from looking at the ports, because most of them are layered, as you can see here. If I drag some notes, those are layered voices, and as you can see as well, it's very low end focused in the range. It doesn't go up as high because, um, together bold sound you really need that warm, fat character off the low range So I start with the low strings with a baseline here on also very bold contrasts in dynamics by automating the dynamics in the waves like that string in Samba, which is doubling the bass, I think as well unoaked of above as well as the leading melody. Then I have cello, so I think it is doubling the melody. I think I could write That's like So, by the way and then I have from bones doubling the bass an octave above on a breast, and sambal, which is basically mimicking the string in sambal, which is the baseline as well as the leading melody. By the way, that is a great cheap. If you want focus and bold power, focus on the baseline and the leading voice, the leading melody, the theme. Those two are the most important to have that raw power. So if I just double that with the strings, that is basically the essence off this short composition, the baseline and the leading melody. The theme and I have the horn seer, which is also doubling the lip main theme. Oh, and as you can hear, I've actually used a poor Tato articulation to extent the beginning of each note and then I have a mixed choir which are is in the low range. So it's basically only men, I think, very, very bold movement again. So this is basically to note harmony all way through on DA. Another thing you can see is these dynamic curves, or not complete the full of the same shape mainly, but they don't know. They do not sink up completely. So we have the peak there, there, there, there you can see. It's like the different on. If you go in here, have a look at everything. You can see that the general shape is like so, but they have slightly different peak points, which makes it more authentic and brings your music alive basically to have all the variation in the movement. So that is bold sounds in epic cinematic music. 24. Heavy Accents: villain and drive is always important for energy and action in music. But for epic music compositions, you should focus less on BC and complex rhythms and mawr on heavy accents and very bold and powerful main groove organ meant your accents by layering them with lots of instruments and sounds in your composition. For example, let's say you have a big Taiko drum to play the main percussion groove. Make sure the main accents used the loudest dynamics and or layered with more percussion instruments and other rhythmic instruments as well. Then you can further boost those accents on the courts and harmonies, the driving instruments and even the main melodic instruments, simply by layering the accents on all instruments to sync up on the strongest accents in your overall rhythmic groove. Basically, heavy accents is a big port off epic music, so make sure they stand out really loud and clear. So let me show you about heavy accents is all about in epic cinematic music by playing you this short composition I created, and it will start super loud at the very first moments will be prepared playing in 321 All right, so what you instantly can. Here is that the main accents is basically providing the beat that you follow along to as a listener. So let's check the piano row editor and soon means we can see everything. Um, you can clearly see where those Maine accents land here on the one and papa Pam, Pam them them that that are done. Ah, the two main ways. You can see that these or the horde accents is first. Look at the labouring. It's layered all over the place here on ALS. These beats that is the Sync synchronized accents, but also you can see the velocity. The dynamic becomes more red. Higher dynamics on those accents, Um, and it's even increases as we go along in the track. So let's check what we have here. The lowest drums should provide the main accents off the main accents. So if it compared to the epic percussion, which plays basically the main groove and you can see here again the lowest Ah, drum has the highest velocity, and it tried the main group them that Adam Dunn there that other them. But if we layer it with ah, the big drums, which is playing lower deeper dump that actually plays. Let's see, you can see it. Okay, so it's late on top. But as you can see here, if I assume mean it plays on Lee there and there's a that that is that. But here it is that that so it it is even more minimal. You can say so. Then, if we continue to the snare drum that provides only those that to really empower the accents continue with the short strings. Here we have an ostinato while also doubling the main accents. As you can see in octaves here, which stars like this theme on the brass place kind of stab courts on duh. Let's see what we have. You can see how the layering is bigger on the accents. I finished with the biggest cord, and then we have choirs on and female choirs and male choirs, which plays short articulation notes, and I only used the same harmonies, just doubled in octaves. Something here. So yeah, so exactly the main accents as the snare is playing, and as the main accents off the entitled Groove is playing now, a bonus tip is what I like to do with percussion and rhythmic ports in epic music, which is to add parable compression to really amp up the power. So if a check here I actually have a compressor added, let's go in and check these settings. What you can see. It's that I have a mix and over here, so if you use a compressor that you can have a mix between the dry and the wet signal that is basically petrol compression because you blend the heavily compressed sound with a dry, dynamic signal. And now that we have added this, the entire track sounds like this, so even more powerful now you learned the power off heavy accents in epic cinematic music. 25. Hybrid Workflow: a peek. Music often relies on a hybrid workflow and final sound, combining the depth and power off orchestral and acoustic instruments with the clarity, shortness and focus off synthesizers, as well as heavily processed sound design and effects. For example, layering orchestral drums with processed sound design hits on impact, adding extra deep low end with synthesizers layered with your orchestral bass sounds, augmenting the Austin auto strings with a pals, synth or sound design rhythms, and using a lot off effects like Brams booms, risers, downers, stingers and massive hits that are not part of a standard orchestra. Basically, when you compose epic cinematic music, you should take advantage off the full range off sounds and effects to make it as big, rich and deep as possible. All right, so let me play these example over a hybrid blend between acoustic instruments and synthesizers playing in 32 All right, so what do we have here? Well, first we have the low end, which is taking care off by acoustic basis here in Nova in speak after articulation on it looks like this that may just so that part. So with hybrid workflow, it's all about layering. Well, sound design and synthesized ports with the organic, authentic acoustic instruments. So in this case, I have layer the exact same Ah, on a sub base, I believe, or low base at least a na active below. Okay, so that's not the Sybase. It's low synth with a bass amp on it. Um, you can dial in the filter if you want to have it as only a low sub base. But in the hybrid blend, you really get that oomph and focus off the synth together with the dynamic and authentic quality of the acoustic basis. Then I did the same thing for the main drive provided by these cello short strings also in speak. Ato. So it looks and sounds like this on here. You can see a bonus tape, which is, if you want to extent something you don't have to only use living off sounds, parts and also used velocity. But you can actually, as you can see here, it's a single note all the time, except here, here and here. And that actually becomes an accident. Take a listen again by providing a hormone it layering trick there. So I lay this on another synth which is a palace type sent believe it was in ominous fear. Let me check. Yep. So, Pizzicato analog style sandwich sounds like this. And here I don't believe I layer it exactly Lets me take a look at these at the same time. Ah, pretty much the same. Except I didn't have that harmonically. So as you can hear the same kind of drive together, they sound like this on a bonus. Tapir is that I, ah recommend not adding delay effects and echoes on acoustic instruments. It is not, ah, strings. Otherwise you'll want to experiment with a creative sound. Of course, it works much better in most cases on synthesizers, which creates even more depth to that hybrid blend. And then I simple having a string in samba will patch here, Um, from cinematic strings to full ensemble patch in stock at the mod that also plays a driving rhythm would say it's not exactly the same because it has a downwards movement where this has an upwards movement a little bit different here as well. It sounds like it based on its own, it s a bit different, in which had Syncopation and also a faster Littlefield report. You can say there which together, let's listen to the insolvable short with the chill owes and had a look inside the piano roll on. Now, if I add that pals strength into that as well, which is pretty much layering here traffic in here. When you add those synthesised sounds as the layers, they could play the exact same pattern or as some Syncopation, or do something different. But the main thing here is the hybrid blend really adds an extra dimension to your music. And these works particularly well for epic cinematic music and again, with percussion and rhythmic instruments in epic music. I like to add peril, compression or at least some compression, sometimes even saturation, as I did in this case here, just mild saturation to beef it up some slight compression. Ah, this time it's not parallel. It's That's why I've used very slight compression and then this character thing here, which fat in this sounds up in this particular plug in I'm using here. So take advantage of a hybrid workflow and mix in your epic cinematic music 26. Build the Energy: most epic music compositions build the energy over time throughout the track, taking the listener on a ride that goes higher and higher and even higher. Of course, you should still have arcs and curves off dynamics, density and loudness in your music. But the main point is that the average energy and power should increase as the track progresses. And most importantly, the final chorus section should have more power and energy than any other section in your arrangement. You can do this by adding mawr instrument ports and layers. But you can also build energy from composition techniques like increasing the dynamics and overall loudness level. And even by going in an upwards direction with your chords and harmonies basically adding more high end voices, the further your epic music track progress is finally, you can take advantage of a classic key change that goes upwards to boost the energy, basically transposing everything up one or a couple of semi tones. This always has a great effect on the overall intensity, which is perfect for that lost big section if you want a final, powerful boost Now, As for building energy, I'm not going to focus on sound design like risers and stuff like that, but actual composition techniques to build energy. So I'm also going to up the tempo for this to 1 40 just because it's more of an energetic field. So let's play this example in 321 Well, right now, let's analyze what is going on here. So I've written down some of the aspect I feel for composition that you can increase and build the energy with, for example, dynamics, which is the most important, probably that you basically increase the dynamics over time. As you can see here, the average dynamics, you can pretty much see a average line going upwards until the end. Another one is direction. So if you take a list, take a look here you can see that the voices are going upwards, rightly slightly, and then rice here with run basically in the end, which really adds a lot of energy. Just this track alone we can see the velocities are very low, getting higher here and now for the final. So another thing with this is also density off the rhythm. So basically, if you take a look, but see Bill with rhythm on this track here. It's super super minimalistic here. In the beginning I see this IHS or strike. It's this. It's low ensemble speak Otto on Novo. So it's the only the 11 bomb and then here a little Phil. And then it starts to get a bit more here until the final part with a rhythm and rhythm is more complex and more notes will add more energy going into on the final. So that's dynamics than direction than intensity, which also goes abdu several of these on many off the tracks. If you check here. Ah, the first track. It's also starting little bore, minimalistic, less notes and then gets get more complex as we go on. So both those together work the same way there. Then ah would see building energy with density. If we check this, it's string is almost short strings on scene phobia. So first we have nothing on dumb Then basically, I add this with up wards movement in dynamics and I was an upwards direction and since I'm layering it with this, these other rhythms since it's no there in the beginning, basically it as the next that I mentioned, which creates in more dense mix. But not only that. The most important thing here is these tracks are not playing disappearing harmonies here, but not course. And these are playing Amona fornek lines. This one creates courts, so harmonies creates more depth in music, which adds density. So if I add that on top of these two from here, you can see that these are basically adding the accents with harmonies. The next one it let's see with depth. Okay, so this is the range part of music. In the case of percussion low percussion, this is Tyco creators. It's Taiko drums. So in the beginning we have, let's see, mainly the media too high, Tyco's and then we get Mawr Dennis in the mix without it beats on the drums. An important note to pay attention to here is the groove goes here and then it actually gets less complex. Less notes here. Why is that? Because I wanted to really augment boost these final accents deaths or to make the ending accents really heat horde, and that goes for almost all of these instruments. Then we have layering, so let's see, here we have action strikes, so basically I have the main percussion groove is the Tyco's here. And then I have chosen some of those two layer with these low drums would see what I'm using here. Ah, Tyco massive ensemble that, though deep rumbling drum. And that adds to the accent CIA to build energy and finally, uh, building energy with layering sounds, which were down pretty much so far, but basically layering on Lee for the final part to make that climax rising climate feel even more intense. And here I'm using in Psalm ble drums from heavy Ah city, which are really massive and deep so as you can hear its again those Maine accents that will hit home here. Listen to all of these because I don't have any single patient going on. I just have those Maine accents you can. You cannot get more focused power and intensity than that, just sinking the main beach in the groove. Ah, because you're basically using the power of silence. I could, of course, have added some high percussion here on the Tyco's. But since I am not, I really add those accents up and take advantage of this silence in between to boost the contrast and that adds really more power and authority. So in total, if you take a look here in the piano roll and let's take a look on the, um, will also Jesus. Well, you can see pretty much what I've already taught you on all these tracks. Sue malt. You can see everything the upwards direction in average velocity, the upwards direction in ah, voices the, um added complexity, meaning density here both in patterns on Khorram harmonies and also the final veering trick here to add really that final sense of power and finally, as always, with percussion, especially for epic music. I'm using a peril compressor here so that it it's really hard. You might even want to have some separation if you wanted to. So that is it. That is how you can build energy in epic cinematic music with these composition techniques . 27. Huge Contrasts: huge contrasts. This is an interesting point, but very important, because high contrast creates a sense of power in music, for example, by using a soft, delicate P an import at the same time as a big, massive sound is signed. Percussion and bold breasts, big and massive sounds will appear even more powerful when played at the same time, or directly offer a softer and lighter sound. Huge contrast, like this is a key characteristic off epic music. The most natural way to increase the contrast in music is with loudness, which is controlled by dynamics and overall level off each instrument port in your track. But you can also introduce high contrast in many other ways, such as contrast ing a lighter, thinner sound with a big and bold sound, or contrasting a high range part with a low end powerful part, even creating high contrast in the very playing style and performance of your parts, such as a fast straight ostinato pattern control stirred by long notes on Let's say, a powerful breast or string section. So to sum up, always think of ways to add high contrast in various ways because huge contrast will boost the sense of power and intensity off your epic cinematic music. Now, the easiest way to create huge controls in epic music is, of course, with the percussion and rhythmic ports. So that is not what I will show here. Instead, I will show you how you can add contrast by using light sounds and thin sounds together. Breathe bold and powerful. Sounds like I have done in these examples. So let's play first and then I will show you what goes inside playing in 321 All right, so what you heard here was basically a cool and response. So the first part of the melody and harmony is here and then, Ah, slight variation of that is the response. Now, in order to create this huge contrast, I have chosen to use very thin and light sounds is soft piano meaning very low dynamics And what you can also do is to add an e key or filter to basically filter out more off the low end and go kind of extreme if you want to create really huge contrast. And now this soft piano which is played using the gentleman here by native instruments. So it has a soft sound on its own with very low dynamics, as you can see here and even fielded out the low end Theun I double that with eight. She list Celeste in key escape. Um, where I went all in with the e queuing. So I filtered all the way from vernacular hurts to make it super throop, Athena and Shimmery Almost like a toy books. And then I actually have it both of these instruments remaining because you can create contrast in two ways First, Ah, what comes before and after. So they versus kind of contrast light versus heavy and so on focused was just spacey and whatever, but you can also have it when you have sounds playing at the same time. So if you have softer sounds like these almost a childlike melody playing just below this eight big sound off all these sports here that will actually add contrast within the overall ambience. Now another thing is very uring a lot. So here is simply a simple melody with an octave in the base. Some hormone is here, but when we go here, I have a year a lot. And of course, adding contrast with dynamics is basically the essence controls the music. So you can see that if I look in the entire piano roll, um, assuming here the entire piano roll and you could see soft And then it starts to get very high here except those light piano and still esports up here. And you also see contrast from density so very minimalistic to very dense in The harmonic voice is here, So if you check first. But the tracks are playing these of course you've heard here and then just this child like metal to going upwards, which is the response which is creating the cadence here in this track. Then I'm using foot. See the main melody on the lush strings here doubled with Let's see, we have well, the choir Lots of parts are playing the doubling, but with harmonies. So in this case I'm just layered in oak tapes. Except for the final Cajuns, I opted for harmony. Then I double up with ah, low strings here which are the basis, so let's see what these are played by a flutter strings. Lush strings are very big patch, and these are lush basis from a flood of strings as well. Where, of course, high dynamic, ah, rain share. If you see the dynamic curves, then I continue to layer up with big breasts. We have this and sambal patch here was See? It's played by four. So in protector to mark the accent. So if you check that we have these two note ominous, no very high dynamics. Then I, uh, layer up with cords. And if we go into the General and c d d d d d Yep, so it's the main theme, but finishing up with you know, Thomas at the end to increase the intensity that there and then for even more epic vibe choirs is always my go to So here, basically court playing chords on a mixed, quieter on d dd d dd d. So it's not really the main melody. It's more off course. Okay, so it's starting to get so big. It's hard to hear, and I accidentally muted it. But let's remove the brass and just play the court choir with the strings and finally to finished off. That's when I reached for percussion. So that was the final part, and what I did here was augment the leading melody. So if you see the little melody is this Papa, Papa, Papa, Papa and the percussion that that's Ah, that's Ah, that that that that only the finishing single patient there in the end. Otherwise, it's basically a lay year to the leading medal here take a look which all in contests context creates this massive wall off sound. So take a look at everything as it playing in the General Theo. So that is a huge contrasts in epic cinematic music. 28. Energetic Transitions: epic music is all about epic energy, which is why you will use a lot of transition effects that adds energy, tension and anticipation to your music. Massive suburb bass drops, tension building risers, reverses and bushes before big hit points and so on. You can also use compositional transition techniques to add energy intention, such as rums, stutters, roles and so on. Or using decent and torment isn't sounds that resolve at the transition point, and you don't have to stick to Onley using energy boosting transitions between the major sections of your compositions. You can also add engine boosting crustaceans with in the sections themselves. For example, let's say you have a 16 bar verse. You can add transition sounds and effects at the eight board turn, or even every four board to a smaller degree if you wish. Basically, like transition fills and spices within your parts themselves, energetic transitions or very important for epic cinematic music. And it's very related to the build the energy where you already learn how we can build with dynamic intensity increasing over time the density on complexity of the nose, more layering, Ah, harmonic layering, adding depth with range and someone, but in this case, I will mainly focus on the sound design aspect. So visors reverses, stutters and so one in order to CSI eight that building energy, which is similar to this but with sounds to really have the transition point right here become, um, a climax for this transition. So one of the main ways is to use a vice er on. I have actually created a packed sound pack of risers, so I'm using that. But you could use a synthesizer like calmness fair or any other one, and basically create a long note and then used pitch bend Teoh leaded rice for, for example, violent or two or three octaves. You have to set the pitch bend range. And this is the kind of sound Internet and up with. And another thing you may notice is the movement in the stereo fields. I'm actually using a tremolo effect for this. Certain that 1/4 note. Just add some more intensity for the Reiser. Then I have these reverse metal sounds. You can used the classic Cymbal crash and reverse it. In this case, I just used one of my sample libraries that has a reverse crash metal sounds and stuff like that bounced it out todo By the way, I really recommend that you bounce it audience we can you can really sink your hit points more precisely. And these sounds like this very dissonant and high tension. Then I have another rice right created and added a stutter effect on it Then bounce it love like this you can use a rhythmic gate effect or something like that is an insert effect or your page Viator on the instrument has to create that stutter and LFO might work as well bounce without again And then I have and others sound that is also risers all these I created myself or used sample libraries to create them. As you can see from these three sounds, they ended abruptly to create a high contrast toward this hit here. But in these final case, I actually let it, um, release here because it adds that really shimmery vibe that makes the power sounds here really add some depth and, uh, space to it. So it's basically she shines in the end there Then for the actual hit sound I used if x Bram I can show you the library. In this case evolution. There's many different libraries that focus on trailer hybrid and cinematic sound effects. So ah, you should look that up both for the actual heat point. The impact here and for rice or starters reverses and so on. It sounds like this. It's one of the more popular sounds for epic and cinematic music. The Bram this one is make made from sound design. Then you can create your own just by using heavy breasts. Big, bold brass libraries. In this case, I'm just using sin phobia with more kowtow and percussion to make it very accented, layered with by the way, this is in oak tapes. So I layer that also octave here with the breast and sambal from seem phony symphony essentials, then starting at the highest dynamics and then going down. I even used as you can see here three notes in octaves, and then I have the actual energy from the composition side is with short strings that are playing the cat staccato. I think let's see what it is cinematic strings to on. Well, it's the cattle first and then going Teoh market you on the final note like this, and by the way you can hear it goes upwards in mo motion here. So it starts. It shocks on the low e like your guitar basically, and then it goes up. And then it's this final motion before the hit here on, By the way, that's super high. Contrast on the strings here sound pretty strange on its own, but in context, you will hear that it works really well on. You can also see on See the Velocity. The dynamic average is increasing to build that intensity, and then I finally have a big impact. Sound from damage is basically an explosion type sound. Those work really well for the final impact point the transition here, which could be, for example, your power section chorus or whatever. So let's listen to everything in contexts playing in 321 Yeah, so that is energetic transitions in epic cinematic music 29. Pulse for Drive: practically all epic music has some kind of underlying pulse that add energy and drive to the music, either as a background rhythm to support the harmonies and themes or in some cases, as a major port and focal point off the music. Almost like a rift ostinato string patterns using a mix of speak Otto, staccato, Mark Otto and other short note articulations, or incredibly useful for adding that energetic rhythm in epic music but also pals is on synthesizers or hybrid rhythmic effects work very well. You can even have a percussive pulses that are not really port off the main percussion instruments, such as various short sounds like ticks, talks and clicks, or any type of more pro castle focused pals group or rhythmic effect. Housing sounds come in many different styles and colors on or particularly useful in epic music, since it adds drive and energy from the classic string ostinato line. But the main accents are played here in the base on here on the home, and it's basically then you can use it in the high range. To layer up like this, you can have a rhythmic palaces. This Waas wana is in the mid range amusing calmness. Fear here when you could use, for example, or page ater a rhythmic gate effect. I've even added some movement with another plug into as emotion into the sound. The pounding. In this case you can have the same cattle soundscape Powell's in a percussive Pals, where I added a tremolo again to as a movement in the stereo field. Great for the ambient background of the pulse, of course, a classic low base palaces, which could be a synthesizer, an electric bass. Ah, I'm using almost here. In this case, you can use pizzicato strings or any kind of plucky sound or plucky synth and let me now play you everything together because with driving rhythms and pulses, you can really use a lot more layers to build up the intensity or role. And this could serve as the underlying rhythmic groove, where you add your bold big breasts and strings to play the theme and base on top of this and, of course, the percussion. So take a listen, and by the way, I'm using stupid shorter here again, some saturation fire compression from character and pastoral compression to really beef up the final sounds. So this is how Powell's for Dr It can sound like in epic cinematic music. So let me play everything together while you can see in the piano roll editor. Here is the pulse basically on. These long notes are basically in all nous fair. You confuse a long pad or since down, and then you slice it up into powerful and or page aviator Britney Gate Effect or something like that. So playing in 321 so that is pals for Dr in epic cinematic music. 30. Layering for Power: very hearing instrument ports and sounds will always add more power to your music, which is why it is particularly effective in epic music. Your entire percussion mix can be much bigger in terms of sound compared to what is usual in a real orchestral composition. For example, you can use to or even more percussion instruments there to make up your low and base part or later, the snare with a pounds type sound effect for bigger impact for the melodic rhythms, you can layer several string ostinato DFACS using different instruments and sample libraries and even synth pulses to make the entire melodic drive section more powerful and rich. Overall, it is especially important to layer in the low end range, regardless of what sound family or section you work on. So an epic music. This means the low percussion, the low end rhythmic drive, the base ports, the low breasts, low strings, etcetera. Other than the low end import. Your main theme is the single most important part of layer for a big, powerful and focused final sound. You can have many instruments, play the theme together in unison or octaves, and even have a layer playing eHarmony off the main theme, but with equal timing of the notes, which will make it stand out even more now. Using the power off. Very hearing is very important for epic cinematic music, so that means layering the percussion and rhythmic parts as well as layering the main theme and the win base. Those I would consider all the most important elements to layer. So if you first take a listen to what's going on here, and then I will diving and show you the individual track. So playing in 321 right, So let's dive in and see what we have here. First there is the percussion, which are these three tracks. The main percussion employed by damage. Armageddon Patch creates the main beat basically, and it looks like this now. What you might immediately notice is the kind of BT here that that that that that that is the main theme. So basically the percussion is boosting the rhythm off the main theme, so the main theme is played by the breast mainly here, so we have it on horns. Onda and I'm using these for Sando. Articulation here enforce on both horns and trumpets because I want to be able to have that short attacked and also play both short Nels and long notes. So it sounds like this thing and it is laid with the trumpets and oxygen above it, as you can see very high dam dynamics. But it's still want to have some movement in dynamics on Die intentionally boosted these shortest notes to make that rhythm that more pronounced, which is what the percussion is adding. So we take a listen to this at the same time as the main percussion on. Have a look here in the media and you can see that that that that that that that it is basically what this is playing here, that that that that that is layering with for power with and focus with percussion on the theme. And of course, I also layer these in octaves de boosted on Lee the horns on with the trumpets an octave above it. Tha s so that is the main theme. Then I have it played. But see on the piano, which is both the baseline and the main theme, I think let's have a listen at the same time as the horns. Yeah, you can see the layering and this allied variation in timing, which also creates a more dynamic and powerful vibe. Right, So that is the piano then I have these basis here. Let's see what that is playing. Ah, so I actually don't need that fact. Because I have the basis down here lets me have a look here I have the basis at the lowest and then I layered that with a cello also on octave above it, with slight difference in the dynamic orcs here. But still, the main direction is pretty much the same. So as you can see here, these are laid in octaves to add more power so that it comes together all as one, um, to create a powerful vibe. So layering in octaves, layering in junior son is really great ideas here for the base. That is for the main theme, including the piano, which basically plays both the main theme man baseline and also that most important accents the absolute Maine accents of the grew. In fact, I layered on these low deep drums Tyco massive insolvable, which sounds like this very big impact. And then, of course, the classic crash Cymbals and it's Cassie. Those are exactly sink with the percussion Low X and so so, together with the main groove means that those are extra powerful accents that are singing on ALS. These percussive instruments and you can see it as well. If you check the main themes of those or this loss to Nose Bamba right there, um, critical. Listen, does he know it's actually the final load there? I think so. If you take a listen to this with the percussion right there before the transition to the second part off the theme. So that is how it all comes together. And then, since this is the mainly percussive vibe here, I always go for some extra saturation in epic music. You could go more extreme in most cases with adding slight situation, some compression character learning, classical orchestral music and some final and peril compression. I like to do that very often when it's played Real nick wait or using percussion or, in this case, just a fat overall vibe. ASIC in here. Let's buy it again from scratch while we check the median sized. You can see everything that is going on playing in 321 So that is very layering for power in epic cinematic music 31. Length for Emphasis: what many composers seem to forget is that note length is equally as powerful. To use this accents in music as high dynamic, contrast and loudness can be. If you hear any rhythmic pattern, the long notes will always stand out the most. Just think of an electric guitars shagging a rhythm every time you release that palm you to let the cord ring. That will be an accent made from length alone in epic music. You can use this to your advantage. For example, your main theme and melody will most probably use long, sustained notes for that sense of authority and power, and your cords can be held out with aired dynamic expression curves for the same type of results. Length is emphasis and authority in music. There are also many signatures sound effects used in epic music that used this authority sustain for a bold, powerful effect. For example, brands, bells, pings, sustained power chords on guitar and basically any long, powerful and resonant sound that ring out so length for emphasis is a truly powerful composition technique that you can use to really boost and empower those extra important notes and accidents in your music composition. so whatever you have as a rhythmic pattern, as soon as you add a longer noting it, it will automatically become accented and emphasized. So if I have something like Caradon Tanter, that Final Two is accented Now if we check this in these live example I created, I have low strings stringing stumble on a power cord electric guitar here. And, as you can see, if I assume in here these are, of course, the long notes for emphasis here on the long strings. And here on the string ensemble, I have the same technique, long notes here, every second board to really put emphasis on those notes here and finally, the power guitar here with a short shrugs, which are palm muted and then the same sink points. So let's play this uncheck the p n roll editors, you concede while we played in actions. So playing in 32 bum. All right, so that is how you can use these long notes as extra powerful accents or emphasis on those notes and that timing in your music composition. And of course, you can use a lot more layering to make this even more pronounced. But basically that is it length for emphasis in epic cinematic music 32. Silence for Effect: Every great speaker and poet knows the powerful effect silence can have and they use it to their advantage because every time you intentionally insert silence as an effect, whatever comes next will feel more impactful and important. In epic music, you can add dramatic silence in the form off complete drops, section breakdowns or simply a sudden interruption off silence in one or more parts playing . This can be percussion ports, driving rhythms, based courts and harmonies will even your leading melody. Basically, you should always think about this amazing trick for adding contrast power and impact to your music, using silence in various ways for dramatic effect in your epic music compositions. So silence often has a more powerful effect than any other sound you could put into your composition. And I will show you this by playing this example I have created where ah ah basically have a string run in three octaves just to beef it up with a ricer effect. Really build that energy in anticipation and then you see the drop here wanna bore off silence? Right now, it is not completely silent. I am, in fact, using a bushier which, with a fading before the final heat right here. So let's take a listen first at healthy sounds playing in three to bomb. Right? So what we have here is this string run just going up the scale there in three octaves there. Then there's riser effect, and I will actually show you how I created this. So basically, it's a single one note here on the root note. And then I add, um, pitch bend modulation going from the middle to the highest. What does this do? Well, if we go into the synthesizer since I'm using here, you basically want to check the bend range. If your synthesizer has that, kick it up to 12 which is one octave or 24 which is two octaves so that going from the middle position of the punishment to the highest is two octaves octaves off pitch bend which create this sort of effect. And then I added guitar rig here to fatten up the sound e que to get rid off the low end because I just wanted high tension riser and then a tremolo to add some movement into it, and then some river, which makes itself like this thing and Ah, Then it suddenly stops there where this Bush effect comes in. Ah, let's see. That is an audio file, by the way. So it's simply sounds like this. And these kinds of bushes or short reverse sounds are great for the final transition here bore. And then going into the hitch, which is an impact sound here using a big drama, think or, ah, epic trailer hit. In fact, which sounds like this massive hit with more cultural quarter, no in context, that sounds super powerful enough. But if you want Teoh, add even more dramatic silence. You could simply meet this if if if I mute that bush again, even more dramatic them or silence, you add in real silence. This is just a relative silence, So compared to everything around it, it is pretty silent. But the more you add, the higher contrast you will get and the more powerful hit the final transition point ISS. And it creates more power, basically. But another final trick I want to show he is. You can also use time extra time with silence for effect. So if we remain this Bush sound, if you drag this over half bore people will expect the land here, so it will be a lot of anticipation of until it resource at that. Finally. So let's listen to this. Playing in 32 bombs as you heard even more powerful. You can extend it for an entire bore off extra silence if you want, but that's it. That is how we can use silence for effect in epics in America, taking music. 33. Congratulations: congratulations. You have now learned the foundations, the sound palette and lots of practical guidelines and tips on a peak music composition. You have been shown behind the scenes of epic music in action for a true insight into how to make music in this show anger and style. So now it is time for you to take action and do your final assignment. Which, of course, is to compose and produce your own. Complete a big music composition from scratch to finished production. Choose a specific style or epic music creator. Vision for your track designed this starting sound palette in your D. A W and then start composing. My name is Mike, and I wish you great success on your professional journey in music.