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View Profile Midnights-Ocean
I make music and sounds. I post mostly on newgrounds so people can use them in games and such. My full albums can be found on my home page below.

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Ocean

Joined on 3/12/09

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Midnights-Ocean's News

Posted by Midnights-Ocean - January 28th, 2021


Not a bad start to 2021 at all. A tune I didn't even think about. Didn't expect anyone to notice. Just kinda came together while I was sitting listening to little birds flutter about outside. I want to take a moment to thank the NewGrounds community. You peeps have held on through thick and thin. 2021 and still kickin.


Peace. : )


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Posted by Midnights-Ocean - October 27th, 2020


https://midnightsocean.bandcamp.com/album/the-land-where-devils-can-not-be


Still a few little mastering details to finish up but yup it's done. Looking like it might be the last album I make. We'll see I guess. Feedback welcome.


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Posted by Midnights-Ocean - October 19th, 2020


So since I lost my studio some 5 years ago, I've had the interesting challenge of finishing a life's works without most of the tools that make music post production easy. Sure I'm no stranger to doing post production 100% inside the box but not like this. A lot of people I know on line, just guess. Well, they say they have a method but the results are often akin to shooting in the dark. At first I was just making educated guesses based on experience. Experience is a pretty heavy hitter when it comes to getting music production right. Never before though had I been forced to do this much blind mixing/production. No reference monitors. No reference room. No buddies with amazing ears who could stop by for tea and listen to my latest mix.


So, for the first few years of studio-less life, my mixes did not turn out well. Nothing world ending but not good IMO. I don't quite remember when but I finally realized, to just mix by real time spectra graph. Such a simple solution, I kick my self for not realizing this years ago. Just look at the real time frequency spread and mix till it averages out to a nice even slope angling down from bass to treble. The more forward you want the mix, the more gradual the slope.


Turns out this method works brilliantly and takes out of the equation any gear, budget or human relativity effects. changing ears and opinions no longer drive me nuts changing every day or week. No more heading back to fix things for the millionth time, because my ears decided it was too *fill in the blank* that day, or some person decided to convince me of their mixing opinion, because they *knew* better that day, which usually means they watched a youtube video and think that counts as experience in a real life studio. No more getting pressured into thinking my mix needs some new piece of, usually expensive, gear.


One more time, the best solution, was simple and right in front of my nose the whole time.


So now, the way I come at mixing and mastering is humble, simple but highly effective. Yes, of course it wont "sound as good" as some super expensive studio mixing mastering but if your composition needs that sort of thing in order to be good, you are focusing too much on packaging and not enough on content. The universal truth in art is, it's always only as good as the writing. If you can't write for shit, post production is just polishing a turd.


Being low on money, my method can't rely on lots of expensive plugins either. I'm sure there are some suites out there that will "mix and master" for you. I am dubious about those claims honestly. For me though, free is the best. I found some great free plugins from meldaproduction. Logic Pro's EQ and adaptive limiter provides the graph, EQing and some light limiting while removing DC. Meldaproduction provides a great free loudness analyzer for LUFs, true peak and a not free multi-band limiter with saturation plugin that is mystical (saturation in general is an AMAZING tool). I've actually found these 5 plugins combined to be a 1000 times more effective than any compressors, even multi-band. I keep tokyodawn's nova active EQ on hand too, for the occasional hard to cure EQ issue (usually bass or that notorious 4kHz hot spot). Very rarely will I use a compressor. My rule of thumb is, if I need a compressor on the mains, the tune isn't mixed enough yet. So for the price of a cheap pair of useless monitors that wouldn't help, I got Meldaproduction's multi-band limiter. Which actually does what it's advertised to do, eliminate your volume handicap without trashing your sound. Oh man does it ever! A must for someone like me, since I actually want to keep as much of the quality and dynamics as I can. <:D


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Posted by Midnights-Ocean - October 18th, 2020


Ok some of you might know the iconic sound of sega's old FM engine back in the 1990s. So would you guess you could make those sounds with a garden pot? Believe it or not, I just sampled taking a mallet to a tiny new empty garden pot. I imported the recording into the simple sample synth. Once pitched way down, that original little "tink" sound turns out to be a dead ringer for sega's FM synth. Add some ADSR and you've got an organic retro FM synth patch. Just used it in this new tune for both a lead and a low low bass pad: https://www.newgrounds.com/audio/listen/972643 Crazy! I knew certain materials vibrated in a manner similar to FM waves but I didn't think I'd find a sound like this just sitting around the house. <:D


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Posted by Midnights-Ocean - October 8th, 2020


Featuring the new strymon nightsky: https://youtu.be/xZ4_QbWt7EY


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Posted by Midnights-Ocean - October 4th, 2020


I doubt this journal will get many responses. Most don't really but lets get into todays subject.


The scope of music changing on a personal level as the years go by and the times change. When the world was 20 years younger, what came to mind when I though of powerful music, were the 4 pillars of hardness, hard acid techno, trance, D&B, rock and combining the 4.


2 decades and it's societal “progression” later, something has changed. It’s probably me but I don’t care about rock anymore. In general, main stream rock feels like, noise, recycled for 80 years. The same 6 chords, 6 guitars, 6 amps. Maybe that’s what’s cool about it. Maybe cool isn’t cool anymore. I don’t know. As far as hard acid techno, trance and D&B are concerned, these days, it stays interesting for me, for about a minute and a half, before, something just turns off inside me. Not sure what but I just loose interest. I just think, heh that 303 was such a great little box and then I get a odd sad feeling and move on. Tis no wonder I don't create much in those genres anymore.


It kinda feels like, the passed is unraveling. Like the dimension where rock, the amen and the little 303 were king, is now just an illusion. As if, the time lines changed and it somehow never happened. All that's left are detached memories of a time, I no longer understand, which is very odd, since I was steeped in it for so long.


Nowadays, what comes to mind when I think of powerful music is: massive, earth reshaping, mega tsunami sized synth bass pads, with no beat, no rhythm-centric aspects, just pure massiveness. Speed and rhythm-centric music, it seems, have gotten smaller in my mind. Sure they are energetic but now it feels more like popcorn. Pooping popcorn is energetic but on the grand scale of things, it’s weak, small. Maybe fun for a short time but ultimately more agitating or annoying to me than moving.


Slow means large now and in a lot of ways it’s actually physically true. Because of perspective, the bigger something is, the more slowly it seems to move. This is why the robots felt so big in the first pacific rim movie, they moved “slow”, as if they were massive. Faster cycles mean smaller size. Atoms spin at mind boggling RPMs compared to your hard drive, vinyl record or the moon. Slow also means longer lived. Where as the faster things in life, are gone quite quickly. Interesting it is that, eh?


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Posted by Midnights-Ocean - September 25th, 2020


Not exactly joining the anarchist “make it a chinese clone” crowd, per-say, but, I will voice my growing displeasure with all these ridiculous displays of shameless decadence that carry a price tag average people can't touch.


Sure all that kit does sound nice and warm but the chill of 2020 financial woes freezes it right out. A lot of people are literally going on 6 to 9 months now, without work. Running out of food money. You can find more ingenuitive pieces of musical pioneering, being made on a shoe string budget, in some no name persons attic. All that adds up to: Yeah, it’s becoming quite gross to me, seeing corporate boot licking celebrities, playing $150,000 rigs, basically just to show off.


Then there’s the inevitable ass kissing fest that follows in the comments. “Oh you are such a god for having more money than 99% of everyone else. Such a genius for programming simple arpeggiators and playing elementary chords drowned in reverb for 10 minutes straight”. It’s such hallow bull shit.


Thousands upon thousands of dollars in kit, usually, almost ALWAYS, just to create a compositionally rather dull, repetitive, piece of retro music (or some other thing). The kind of music, that, if posted without the famous name, shiny vid and expensive gear, would likely get a "ho hum" response from most. So is it the actual composition people are impressed with? Or the superficial stuff? Spoilers, it's all the superficial stuff.


Real genius doesn’t need excessively expensive kit to make ground breaking art.


In closing, I still have issues with the “make it in china for cheep” stance but no longer because I think these expensive companies are making art better. Sure companies like moog offer "cheaper" synths but oscillator for oscillator, not really. In fact it seems there is very little effort by them and others to make analog polyphonic synths affordable. I guess they just think people wont find out, there are ways to be warm and analog without taking out a loan. At the end of the day, it's about talent and you still have to digitize it, to distribute it, so your warm sound will always have a bit of freezer burn.


Just sayin' :/


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Posted by Midnights-Ocean - September 21st, 2020


Was farting around on some music genre sites and I noticed there has been very little in the way of electronic genre inventing over the passed 2 decades. There was a bit between 2000 and 2010. Nothing like the 2 decades before it but at least something. 2010 to 2020 though, had literally nothing. Complete vacancy on 3 different genre maps. What happened to musical innovation? I know for a fact it still exists but where are all the new genres it should be creating? It's a rather stark contrast between say, the 90s and post 2000. Maybe you could chalk it up to social climate. Even so though, no new genres in 10 years? Doesn't seem possible.


Anyone know of any offhand? New genres: 2010 to 2020?


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Posted by Midnights-Ocean - May 6th, 2020


https://youtu.be/7_d4s7chpqk

Please like share and all that. : )


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Posted by Midnights-Ocean - March 22nd, 2019


Technology, it seems, acting through incentive, removes the human element from a modern musical equation. In the depths of the DAW, soft synths and sound automation, the human at the keyboard becomes more and more lost. Likely unknowingly, contributing less and less to the final outcome. Originality, staring into the digital void, is replaced with the all one sameness of a program.


Thus, the double edged sward of technology. Giving power to the creative and poor, while stripping credible artists, both rich and poor, of their sonic identity. Promoting faux creators, intoxicated with illusions of grandeur, the intellectual foundation of the arts, erodes into oblivion.


When society grades music based on superficial qualities, instead of human composition, a runaway loss of creative incentive ensues. Music making, requiring less than 10% human input, renders a music “maker”, no longer. What remains but a dishonest shadow, possessing a program, or perhaps, does the program possess them?


With a download and a click, one can create shining worlds of false, empty magic. Death and darkness, whispering sweet lies, as their peer's intellect dies.  


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