A stereotypical porno where the dialogue became too intense – Batman Begins

batman-begins-3

This project was probably one of the most fun things to do. I had to watch a lot of films (not porno’s) to try and hammer in the style of music and mixing that people assimilate ‘porn music’ to be. Films such as ‘Zach and Miri Make a Porno’ and ‘Knocked Up’ were good to get an idea of the corny sounding music, however ultimately I just had to write something in Ableton and play with it to get anywhere.

The piece works brilliantly with the film as there isn’t much background music from the original audio. There are a few droning sounds from lower strings, however I wrote the project in the same key (D min) allowing the audio to be played simultaneously without sounding like it is clashing. There are so many cues in the movie such as the intense eye contact, the wiggling of the branding rod and a half naked masked man entering the picture that accompany the music well. It could have honestly passed off as a ‘high-budget’ porno with ‘low-budget’ music, as I obviously couldn’t edit the video in a way to make it seem a bit more dodgy with visible mistakes. It’s more or less turning a serious moment into a comedic one just through audio cues.

The only trouble I had with this project was the ending scene where the dialogue gets very intense (shortly after Bruce Wayne is told to kill the man). The audio got slightly out of control here and could have been handled slightly better, but for the amount of video editing experience I had at the time I think it was a good effort. Although the scene used had plenty of visual cues similar to a pornographic film, the rest of the visuals looked too realistic to fit in with the music. It slight counterbalanced the effect of the music, however not so much that it takes the effect of a comedic effect away from the scene.

Unfortunately during the sorting/filing process on my hard drive, I had deleted the Ableton Project file leading me to not being able to provide screenshots on how I assembled this piece. However I remember the entire process, I do apologise for not being able to visually represent my work.

Here’s the video:


 

Instrumentation

Total layer count:

  • 1 X Drum Rack with no layered sounds – Incredibly thin and minimalistic sound, nothing too real sounding, the more artificial the better
  • 1 X Bass Guitar module from Reason 5 – The most artificial sounding representation of a Bass Guitar. This was perfect because it sounded so terrible.
  • 1 X ‘Off The Shelf’ sounding Piano module from Ableton – It just needed to sound like a Piano, not an amazing one, neither a terrible sounding one.
  • 2 X Guitar tracks – To incorporate what we believe to be the ‘porno wah’s’ and epic sounding pitch bends. I didn’t use my normal Guitar Effect Bank because it would honestly have sounded too good to fit in the mix. I wanted the most stereotypical porn sounding instrument bank ever.

The drums took the least time to write in, edit and so forth. I had never gone through the process of making drums that sound intentionally corny, intentionally thin and just plain horrible. It sounded so rigid, along with the super robotic sounding drum rolls within the patterns. I couldn’t have asked for a better result. I used a 2 bar pattern which resembled a badly assembled hip-hop beat. As long as the kick was punchy, the snare was well … there and the hi-hats were audible, it’s fine.

The Bass Guitar module took no editing in terms of timbre, but just simple EQ and compression settings. I wanted it to bleed into the Bass Drum (which you’d never ever ask for in reality) and have an overall fat sound. This was achieved by a big low end boost on the EQ. You probably can’t hear the Kick when the Bass plays simultaneously. If you can’t, then my work has achieved its goals!

The Guitars made me record in a way that I would never ever do again (unless making more ‘porno’ sounds) which bypassed a lot of amplification. I used the Ableton distortion, the Ableton WAH-WAH effect (super rigid, no swing directly on the beat) and plugged the Guitar directly into the computer MIC input to get a thin sound. Normally, you’d never do this as the signal is too weak and doesn’t sound good at all, but when I originally used my normal effects board, the signal was too good and not sounding awful which defeated the purpose of the recording. There was a lot of compression, a lot of make up gain and a lot of mixing techniques you’d never want to try on anything else.

The Piano jut played some dissonant chords with some minor 7ths and 9’s. Everything in D minor with some ‘low’ notes to add to the peculiar feeling of the music. EQ’ing was only to make it sound a bit more tinny and less real sounding. Not much compression was used on the track in general.

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