Having received the dubious honour of "best track" in the category "worst possible combination of genres", it appears it falls to me to make up some random rules for the next contest. With the last couple of contests being style-related, it's time for something a bit different: embracing your fun and devilish side. To help inspire you, this contest has its own chan (courtesy of my wonderful wife):
Backmasking is really just a fancy word for "reversing a sample", and it's been a popular technique since the days of tape recordings. Jimi Hendrix played guitar backwards on some of his tracks (Castles Made of Sand is a good example); Give it Away by the RHCP also features reverse guitar. The Beatles liked using backwards snippets in their tracks. In fact, legend has it that the final inifinite groove (vinyl only of course) of Sgt. Peppers is "I want to f**k you like I'm Superman" (IIRC) when played backwards. You'll have to try it yourself and see what you think.
And there has been much controversy surrounding the technique. 1 or 2 of you may remember years ago, when Judas Priest were hauled in front of the courts after two teenagers entered a suicide pact. It was alleged that this was caused by subliminal backwards messages in their recordings. I won't go into the details, as you can read about this on the interweb. Suffice to say, the case was ultimately dismissed. Nonetheless, backmasking has at least partially become associated with dark arts - including the claim that listening to Stairway to Heaven backwards reveals an Ode to Satan. Obviously a load of nonesense, but still provides the opportunity for some fun.
So, long story short... for this month's contest, you need to write a melodic part, record it as audio, and then incoporate the unedited, reversed audio into your song. You should also include the (muted) audio of the sample playing forward in your FLP, as well as any patterns (notes, automation etc.) you have used to make the sound. This section should be at least 8 seconds and 4 bars long (i.e. no one note masterpieces) and percussive parts are not allowed (that's much easier that writing the melody backwards!).
To make things even more devilishly interesting, you also need to include a section that includes a motif spelling out the word "defaced", i.e. the notes D E F A C E D (no sharps/flats) need to appear in that sequence at least once in your piece. Again, this needs to be played by a melodic part. The note lengths, rhythm etc. are up to you, only the notes matter. What comes before and after is up to you; this can obviously be part of a longer melodic phrase.
Here are the summarised rules, with a couple of little additions to the above:
- The song must be between 1:11 and 3:33 in length (6:66 strikes me as way toooo long).
- You must use the following 4 samples in the /Data/Patches/Packs/SFX/ folder of FL Studio:
- FX Mech Growl
- FX Piano Nightmare
- FX Spin Down
- FX Reverse Series
- You must include the motif D E F A C E D at least once in your composition. If you use the piano roll, the notes in the piano roll must be these notes (no sharps/flats); you are free to transpose the notes using the wrapper if you want to write in a different key. If you record external audio, you are stuck to these notes, which will presumably limit your choice of key (F and C look like good choices)!
To make things less confusing, don't put this motif in the reversed audio part... because I don't know if it should read "defaced" backwards or forwards then.
- You need to include one melodic part that is reversed audio of at least 8 seconds and 4 bars in length. You need to include the source of this audio in your FLP (but mute it!)
- You must use FL stock samples, FX and synths (no third party stuff). Resampling is allowed as long as the base material is stock FL. IL sample packs (extra purchases) will be treated as stock, but the results must be rendered to .wav to avoid giving the source materials away. Recording "real" (as opposed to virtual) instruments is allowed, but no recording hardware synths - I think that would be an unfair advantage.
You have 4 weeks to submit your entry. The contest runs from today (26 August 2017) to Saturday 23 September inclusive (UTC). To enter, upload both the mp3 and FLP (or zipped loop package inc. FLP) to this thread. Multiple entries are allowed. Withstanding enough submissions, you'll be able to vote for 3 entries (subject to change).
Please also include information on where the "defaced" motif is located in your piece. If you're feeling particularly nice, upload a screenshot of the piano roll (if applicable). Please also let us know where to find the reversed audio in your FLP (playlist track and position). If you want to share information on how you approached writing the backwards melody, I'm sure that would be interesting.
I will post a few tips in the next post so as not to clutter up this post any more.