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Reversing and Changing the Speed of Songs

Demensa

Characterless sack of potatoes
Meh, I can't come up with decent titles, but I think you get the gist of it.

Does anyone else here like to play around with their songs after they're done, by reversing them or changing the speed? (When I say this, I mean by changing the recording with an audio program, not just simply playing the song a little faster.)
From time to time, I'll find myself listening to backwards songs and more recently, songs that have been slowed down to around 1-5% of their original speed.

Sometimes I even feel like some of the slowed down tracks make better ambient pieces than what my original intention for the song was!

Also, I have to recommend making 'glitchy', samples by just changing the speed of some old audio and isolating small clips of it.


So I guess what I think would be fun, is for you guys to go and play around with the audio of your past songs.
Post some slowed down or reversed excerpts of your music! (Most of it will sound stupid, but at the same time, interesting.)

These simple tools can produce some fantastic results in music production once you get familiar with them. I consider reversing audio and extreme speed changes to be very useful when I write songs.

Sample 1 at 5% speed
 
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Kio Maru

Member
I've heard it's not a good idea to use Audacity from what I've heard, it's best to use something like Cool Edit Pro (not sure about Adobe Audition, though). Audacity tends to lose transients when time stretching whereas Cool Edit Pro uses the more expert algorithms, the main issue is with the time domain. If you want more flowing time changes, I'd say something like a turntable with the ability to change time is your best bet (in terms of EDM, junglists and gabbers used this very often and would actively change the time). I'm hoping to get into production, myself, I must admit changing the speed of tracks seems effective sometimes.
 

Demensa

Characterless sack of potatoes
I've heard it's not a good idea to use Audacity from what I've heard, it's best to use something like Cool Edit Pro (not sure about Adobe Audition, though). Audacity tends to lose transients when time stretching whereas Cool Edit Pro uses the more expert algorithms, the main issue is with the time domain. If you want more flowing time changes, I'd say something like a turntable with the ability to change time is your best bet (in terms of EDM, junglists and gabbers used this very often and would actively change the time). I'm hoping to get into production, myself, I must admit changing the speed of tracks seems effective sometimes.

That makes sense, (I must admit that I haven't used audacity in years).
I like to use time stretching mainly for sampling and ambience, rather than flowing changes with a turntable, but that would be fun to play around with.
I have a slight obsession with backwards stuff as well, and I've always wanted to compose a sort of modern "crab canon" utilising reversed audio recordings and such.
 

Kio Maru

Member
That makes sense, (I must admit that I haven't used audacity in years).
I like to use time stretching mainly for sampling and ambience, rather than flowing changes with a turntable, but that would be fun to play around with.
I have a slight obsession with backwards stuff as well, and I've always wanted to compose a sort of modern "crab canon" utilising reversed audio recordings and such.

I see. Generally if you want to make a warped ambient sound, granular synthesis is recommended instead as it allows you to manipulate the grains via modulation, only a sample can have a more pre-made timbre. A lot of time-stretching in ambient music nowadays is also replaced with digital delay and convolver reverb (a convolver in itself can add a dimension of time stretching) to create very delicate filtered tones for nice or harsh atmospheres which is extremely useful in soundscapes for what I've heard. Some pitch tools such as autotune can give a stretching/pitching effect, as well. A modern crab canon sounds interesting, this would be very easily to do with march-like melodies as it works in sets of rhythmic stabs that resolve back to the first note, I can see how this can be effective in pulse and ambience oriented music, of course for the reverse sound to be perfectly identical the sound would have to be very sinusoidal or be comprised of pulse waves and the attack exactly the same as the release (same goes for any effects but I'd reckon it'd have to be fairly dry). Good luck on that, anyhow.
 

Demensa

Characterless sack of potatoes
I see. Generally if you want to make a warped ambient sound, granular synthesis is recommended instead as it allows you to manipulate the grains via modulation, only a sample can have a more pre-made timbre. A lot of time-stretching in ambient music nowadays is also replaced with digital delay and convolver reverb (a convolver in itself can add a dimension of time stretching) to create very delicate filtered tones for nice or harsh atmospheres which is extremely useful in soundscapes for what I've heard. Some pitch tools such as autotune can give a stretching/pitching effect, as well. A modern crab canon sounds interesting, this would be very easily to do with march-like melodies as it works in sets of rhythmic stabs that resolve back to the first note, I can see how this can be effective in pulse and ambience oriented music, of course for the reverse sound to be perfectly identical the sound would have to be very sinusoidal or be comprised of pulse waves and the attack exactly the same as the release (same goes for any effects but I'd reckon it'd have to be fairly dry). Good luck on that, anyhow.

Yeah, I really want to put my own spin on this, with the beginning melodic line sounding alright, but slightly strange. The synth for this will have a relatively normal attack and decay.

Chords, bass and standard percussion will accompany this.

Halfway through the song though, the melodic line will be reversed (making the attack slow, etc. to give the classic 'backwards' feel) and the rest of the instruments/synths will play their original lines but reversed (only the sequence of notes they play will be different, not the actual recording of these instruments.)
There's just so many other possibilities as well!
Changing the chords, reversing the entire song...

I haven't been writing music for very long, so I'm just getting into this over the past year or two.
You sound like you know what you're talking about! Did you say you were getting into sound production or engineering?
 
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