Search This Blog

Sunday, April 11, 2010

24. "Solar System" by The Beach Boys

So in all honesty, this was the first time I took a look/listen at what The Machine selected for me and went all "Dude, I don't know if I can DO this." It's a Brian Wilson thing. It's got weird chords and changes, and good singing and stuff. I was afraid it might take me more than a day to even unravel the music part. I thought of a few weird ways of doing it, as usual, and then wound up with... this.

A few notes: the background space noises are from a record called "Scary Sounds: Nightmarish Noise for Halloween!" I sort of collect that kind of thing, but it should be noted that I might well have to cover this track itself ("Saucer Wars in Outer Space") one day. Also, I reversed the track to give myself something else to stir into the sonic stew, and ended up accidentally making the sped-up backwards "alien voices" play forward again... you can hear them on the fade-out.

Rex Broome ~ everything



Not very pleasant to listen to, really. The effects on the vocals were just too much. At the time I think I was just trying to cover up for pitch problems on those really hard-t0-sing even the melody lines (I didn't even dare to try the harmonies), but it ends up too garbles to qualify as "whimsical", which had been my hope. I do enjoy the weird little keyboard vibe things that stand in for the entire backing track, but overall it was mostly an attempt to "show my work" in the face of a solution that didn't really work out.

This one was most definitely tracked along to the original song, which was then erased. Without doing so, I think I would have been totally lost on those melodies and quite probably the keyboard parts to. Never even considered playing any guitar on this one.

By far the best part of this is the parody artwork, which wasn't really so much difficult-- it's a grid with all the elements I needed already there in little squares to be duplicated and pasted-- as it was time-consuming. Very effective, though!


There's a backwards vocal of me singing... something... running through the latter part of the track. I honestly don't remember what that was and don't feel like reversing it to find out, because I highly suspect it's just the same vocal as the lead track, just played backward and with far fewer effects.


  1. Nice pixel-wrangling on the cover image...Interesting that that '70s-era faux-needlework cover translates directly into early '10s "8-bit" nostalgia for the look of low-res video games...

  2. Yep. I was really amazed at how easy it was... I expected a certain amount of warp, woof, and parallax distortion to have set in when the needlework thing was photographed, reproduced, re-reproduced the the CD, scanned, uploaded and downloaded, but nope, pretty much a perfect grid! Thank you, Beach Boys... I love you, too.