Tag Archives: AudioAssignments

Scoring 800 Percent

This is the make it 800% slower assignment worth 3 points.

This was an interesting experience. I had no clue just how long the process would take for a lengthy piece, or how massive the resulting file would be. It took about 2 hours to process, and I ended up with a 4 GB behemoth of an audio file that was entirely unmanageable, so I snipped only the first 45 minutes or so of the SIX HOUR long piece. The real shame is that some of the most beautiful sounds came later in the piece, but the overall feel is still clear from this clip. I used Bernard Herman’s “Taxi Driver” theme as my music of choice, and the result is mostly dreamy, somewhat haunting gold. It’s amazing how beautiful music comes out in 800x. The sax that comes in and out of Herman’s score is the biggest issue here, as it is sometimes unbearably blaring, obnoxious, and overall difficult to listen to for very long. Otherwise though, there’s a whole wealth of moodiness going on here. This makes we want to experiment with everything now.

Bueller?

This is the dialogue mashup assignment worth 4 1/2 points.

This was another really fun one. I knew I wanted to do something with the “you talkin’ to me?” scene. It’s just too perfect for this sort of assignment.  I love the awkward tension that builds throughout. Initially I really wanted to get a Joe Pesci character in there somewhere. I was looking for a way to bring in his crazy “how’m I funny?” monologue from Goodfellas, but the scene is a bit too hectic and specific to move it into another context with total ease. I still want to do something with that scene eventually. Anyway, Ben Stein’s droll professor from Ferris Bueller’s Day Off seemed the perfect sort of character to contrast with Travis Bickle. There are a few moments in particular that really play off of each other well, but I couldn’t find enough useful dialogue from Stein’s character to flesh it out much more. Still a funny piece!

Bad Service on the Death Star

This is the movie voice machines assignment worth 2 1/2 points.

I had a ton of fun with this. I knew it was an assignment I wanted to work on right away when I read the description, but I wasn’t sure what character to try and tackle. I quickly realized that finding uniform sound clips to fit into a coherent, specific message would be difficult for the circumstances, so I went a different route. After playing around with Audacity’s various tools and effects, I realized that a simple combination of lowered pitch and added echo creates a rather convincing Darth Vader effect. Naturally, I went the humor route and had fun doing so. It’s a silly sort of thing, but I think it’s at least worth a chuckle. The Imperial March theme music is just icing on the cake.

Radio Taxi

I think I’ve made my love affair with Taxi Driver pretty clear already, but here I am using it again. I instantly thought of the theme music by Bernard Hermann for the assignment. I spliced it up in a few places and I think most of them are fairly clean, though there’s one in particular I wasn’t totally able to smooth out. I had some goofy fun playing around with what I was going to say besides “DS106 Radio.” I eventually ended up with a somewhat generic little noir line, but I think it’s still fairly effective. I was really impressed with what others were able to do with this assignment. A few of them are so spot on, especially in terms of creating a real identity for the station. I’m not sure mine is quite as effective in that department, but I still think it’s a nice little piece.

Someone Just Left

This is the required sound effects story assignment, worth 3 1/2 points.

I’ve never done anything like this before, and I don’t think I realized just how far one can push a story with sound effects alone. The hardest part was determining a topic. I struggled for a while and didn’t know where to begin. I decided to listen to a random effect on freesound and build a narrative with that as my starting off point. The sound I landed on was a car driving away. I decided to create a subtle, melancholy story where a man watches someone important drive off while he’s left to himself. He sighs, listens to the chimes outside as the car slowly drifts off. Then he goes inside, sits down in his rocker with a big exhale and turns on the television. It’s simple and perhaps not as ambitious as it could have been, but there’s a remarkable amount of content going on here, even as simple as it is.

Blackbirds

This is the solo vocal trio assignment, worth 3 points.

I do a good bit of guitar playing and singing in my spare time, and I’d been listening to this classic today so I thought it might work well. I forgot how long the gaps in vocals are. That’s the biggest problem here. It just goes quiet for too long without the guitar plucking away in the back. I fudged a line which bothers me, and I’m hellishly out of key at different times, but I’ll take it!