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Hilltop Haunted Mansion HALLOWEEN2012


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Description
Watch where you bravely go exploring on October 31st or you may have to run all the way home....


I was going to do this piece entirely with synths and yet here it is orchestral except for one synth pad instrument. Crazy sounds that come out of those cluster violins not to mention the waterphone! This turned out to be more of a cinematic soundtrack vs. something more out there like ambient horror which I thought I might do but then things worked out differently. I had also hoped to get this done before the closing date but alas....

Any and all constructive comments are welcome. Thanks to jgurner for suggesting the Challenge.

Doug
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Lyrics
Boo!
Song Stats
Hits: 2261
Comments: 60
Fans: 25
Plays: 292
Downloads: 56
Votes: 0
Uploaded: Oct 31, 2012 - 04:27:14 PM
Last Updated: Oct 31, 2012 - 04:27:14 PM Last Played: Jan 17, 2017 - 07:51:10 PM
Song License
Creative Commons License:
Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike

Creative Commons

Song Actions
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Hardware:
Mac Pro
Software:
Logic Pro, EWQL Symphonic Orchestra, QL Stormdrum 2, Apple Logic pad synth and vocal chorus, Ozone 4
Comments
paul f. page said 1574 days ago (October 31st, 2012)
This is scary...
...and not so much because of the musical content/theme, but because it is so beautifully conceived and executed. In every way (music, mix, production, orchestration, performance) this is a stellar track that is worthy of any horror movie. Wow. at 2:10 my studio speakers and walls are rumbling. This is terrific. What a great post, Doug. I think you have made amazing leaps in orchestration here. Just wonderful in every way.
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Doug Somers said 1574 days ago (October 31st, 2012)
You are always so kind with your comments
This piece has jumped the queue in that I have 2 others in the Avignon suite that I worked on whilst in France, plus another ambient piece that's almost done, and this one I just was ready to start and complete today. Thank you again sir. Your remarks always find a welcome ear at this end!

Doug
Check out my latest song called Youthful Adventure
Gaylen75 said 1574 days ago (October 31st, 2012)
classic
love the way this sounds. This reminds me of what makes halloween my favorite holiday, I'm a chicken shit.
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Doug Somers said 1574 days ago (October 31st, 2012)
If you think you get scared...
I hate watching horror movies. I get way too creeped out, probably from my overactive imagination.

Thanks for the listen and your thoughts!

Doug
Check out my latest song called Youthful Adventure
richard13 said 1574 days ago (October 31st, 2012)
Hey kids...
Scary stuff!
This is monstrous. Filled with wonderfully spooky sounds and surprises. Maybe a little tension, too. Nice work, Doug. And I've had dreams before about that house.
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Doug Somers said 1574 days ago (October 31st, 2012)
Count Floyd returns
Hey Richard, great to hear from you. I thought that the old orchestral tension would be an interesting creative challenge. I will admit that there were times in putting this together that I thought of Bugs Bunny sound tracks - at least before the ghostly sounds were added.

Hope you don't have too many dreams about that place - it certainly gives me the shivers!
Check out my latest song called Youthful Adventure
Moviz said 1574 days ago (October 31st, 2012)
Doug
this is so descriptive of what I'd imagine goes on in the house in your artwork LOL..... whooooogh I'm shuddering already. This is great soundtrack music and very full and dramatic to boot... good one, regards M
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Doug Somers said 1574 days ago (October 31st, 2012)
Many thanks
It's amazing how one can find artwork to suit almost any piece using Google. I would have posted an attribution but couldn't find one. Anyway, it fits the music I think. Thanks for you kind words, and apologies for any nightmares :)

Cheers Maurice,
Doug
Check out my latest song called Youthful Adventure
Les_Kloo said 1574 days ago (October 31st, 2012)
The haunting
Creepy. Sort of a Jaws-like opening, but it definitely took a more sinister turn from there. Perfect haunted house atmosphere.
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Doug Somers said 1573 days ago (November 1st, 2012)
Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the haunted mansion
Yes, it does have a little Jawsiness to the intro, although that's not what I had in mind as my fingers tinkled the fake ivories. Sinister though - you bet.

Thanks sir!
Doug
Check out my latest song called Youthful Adventure
Les_Kloo said 1573 days ago (November 1st, 2012)
Headphone listen
The first listen was with my crappy internal computer speakers. Now with the headphones, I hear everything. Fantastic arrangement and mix. Tons going on. Love the bells, just for example. The stabs echo away into the darkness, and now something is about to happen. And the movement that kicks in around 2:05 is some serious business. Running away. Superb and DLed.
Check out my latest song called Arctis II
Doug Somers said 1573 days ago (November 1st, 2012)
Re: Headphone listen
I tried this in the car and the violins and waterphone were so dominant that the rest was lost. I guess it goes to show what they talk about in mixing books - go for the crappy speakers for the mix and if it works there it should work well on a good system or in phones. I, being a contrarian (and lazy) did not mix with crappy speakers and so the balance is not quite right for playback on many things which likely includes internal computer speakers.

Thanks for the glowing comments Mr. K. I feel honoured.
Doug
Check out my latest song called Youthful Adventure
Char said 1573 days ago (October 31st, 2012)
You had me at the
door slamming sound. I can not imagine how you did this. It almost sounds like it made itself. Creepy muzak for a tense walk through of that creepy house. Boo-tiful. Thanks.
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Doug Somers said 1573 days ago (November 1st, 2012)
It did make itself
The door slam was assisted by using the sound of struck metal plates. Great sounds to have for adding power to a piece and to help wake up anyone thinking of nodding off.

Thanks to you too for your boo-tiful commentary.

Be well Char,
Doug
Check out my latest song called Youthful Adventure
Philip18 said 1573 days ago (October 31st, 2012)
Hilltop Hauneted Mansion
Needs a script and some actors and it would be complete. But as is, it's a fine piece of music in the genre. Excellent recording and mix!
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Doug Somers said 1573 days ago (November 1st, 2012)
Thanks Philip
I can't think of anything more polar opposite to Catalina Sun :) I think I need your collab even more after working on this Hallowe'en piece just to calm down.

Thanks for having a listen, and all the best.

Doug
Check out my latest song called Youthful Adventure
TvRicky said 1573 days ago (November 1st, 2012)
Boooo..Baby!
You started this man and I for one am glad you did. Your sound is real and so very professional. Love the conceptual vision here! imaginative and mysterious. I can see the visuals dancing in my eyes. Kick it baby!

A SincerelyZipped, TvRicky
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Doug Somers said 1573 days ago (November 1st, 2012)
Thanks man
Appreciate the kind words Mr. R. Hopefully your visuals from this piece go away when the music stops.


Thanks for having a listen,
Doug
Check out my latest song called Youthful Adventure
michaeljayklein said 1573 days ago (November 1st, 2012)
Creepy!
And I do mean creepy--throughout this excellent piece, I felt if the walls were closing in on me and/or (maybe worse) if I turned around, some THING was poised behind me! I love supper natural fiction and to me, this was like one of the great English ghost stories put to music. I'd have to fully agree with Paul's review of this, he says it best. Your work is always a great pleasure to enjoy--thanks again for sharing it! And, HAPPY HALLOWEEN! Michael
Check out my latest song called There Ain't Nobody Here but Us Chickens!
Doug Somers said 1573 days ago (November 1st, 2012)
Walls closing in
Didn't Disney do that (and I don't mean through their purchase of the Star Wars rights from Lucas).

Maybe I should name next year's Hallowe'en tune THE THING THAT ATE MICHAEL JAY KLEIN, or The Ghosts of Downton Abbey for the English drama enthusiasts.

Cheers Michael - thanks for the very kind words.

Doug
Check out my latest song called Youthful Adventure
sewer rod said 1573 days ago (November 1st, 2012)
Hilltop
Good one. this would fit perfectly in a horror movie. Love the "stabs" in the middle. Very nice.
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Doug Somers said 1573 days ago (November 1st, 2012)
Stabs
Now that you mention it, I have a sound pack with some great cinematic stabs that I forgot I owned. I could have used them here for sure. Next time.

Thanks for the listen Jay.

Doug
Check out my latest song called Youthful Adventure
DWL said 1573 days ago (November 1st, 2012)
Suitably haunted
Very effective. The low strings are excellent and the sense of anticipatory dread when the high frequencies kick in is great. I was waiting for the hits but they still caught me out!

Lovely work Doug

Cheers

Dick
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Doug Somers said 1573 days ago (November 1st, 2012)
Prepared for the hits
Actually the use of hits/stabs/rumphs is so common in many cinematic pieces (especially trailers) that they have become a self parody. I started to make a trailer parody to post here and in the end I thought I couldn't be any more over the top than what is commercially already out there so it's hard to be satirical.

Thanks for your insights Dick.

Cheers,
Doug

Check out my latest song called Youthful Adventure
magnatone said 1573 days ago (November 1st, 2012)
Hilltop
BOO!!! great job doug - much enjoyed!
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Doug Somers said 1573 days ago (November 1st, 2012)
BOOO Back to YOUUUUUU
Hi Karen,
Thanks for the support!

Doug
Check out my latest song called Youthful Adventure
Bowman said 1573 days ago (November 1st, 2012)
It

was a great choice to go orchestral on this Doug. Organic in an otherworldly way. Growling, menacing and thrilling with a slight nod to Bernard Herrmann's Psycho at the end just fabulous.
And the mix just made my jaw drop… and now it's just jumped off the desk.
Cheers,
Charlie

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Doug Somers said 1573 days ago (November 1st, 2012)
Stop that jaw!
Gee Charlie, your comments read like prose poetry they can be so descriptive. Thanks for your own nod of approval too BTW, it means a lot.

Tell your jaw that the mix is largely how the samples come out of the can with the exception of tweaking in the mastering phase with Ozone. I have to admit I really like the EWQL stuff and I am no where close to exhausting the possibilities of the pack.

Thanks Charlie,
Doug
Check out my latest song called Youthful Adventure
TvRicky said 1573 days ago (November 1st, 2012)
Photomagical Music
Production Seville for sure. Feels like I'm watching a Mystery unfold. Great Conceptual Musical presentation!

A SincerelyZipped, TvRicky
Check out my latest song called Trane's Eastern Groove
Doug Somers said 1573 days ago (November 1st, 2012)
Mystery Theatre
Thanks man, appreciate the comment - especially how it works for you as a soundtrack to a mystery.

Stay cool,
Doug
Check out my latest song called Youthful Adventure
SmokeyVW said 1573 days ago (November 1st, 2012)
watch where you step
spooky

orchestra is so much more expressive - it's ok you went there

thanks

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Doug Somers said 1573 days ago (November 1st, 2012)
Thanks Bill
Sometimes old school orchestration is the way to go. Love your Wasiwasi BTW. Very effective and not as in your face as my piece.

Cheers,
Doug
Check out my latest song called Youthful Adventure
Narad said 1572 days ago (November 2nd, 2012)
Hilltop Haunted Mansion
Fantastic stuff ! Bravo !
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Doug Somers said 1572 days ago (November 2nd, 2012)
Thanks Harald
A deep bow to you sir.

Cheers,
Doug
Check out my latest song called Youthful Adventure
Henke said 1572 days ago (November 2nd, 2012)
Wow
This is good, you're a real professional, but I guess you knew that already ;-) Anyway, always nice to hear something new from you.

Thanks and take care,
Henke
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Doug Somers said 1572 days ago (November 2nd, 2012)
Thanks Henrik
I have a stack of unfinished tunes - the Avignon suite I mentioned above, and an ambient piece I created to exercise my synths which is almost done and will be posted soon even though it's much more recent than the suite.

Thanks for the kind words. I love to listen to other composers' ideas and read about theory and the best feeling is when I can put all that structure aside and just hammer away at the keyboard and see what comes up 'automagically'. Appreciate your coming by!

All the best,
Doug
Check out my latest song called Youthful Adventure
maxruehl said 1572 days ago (November 2nd, 2012)
Always
so spot on in achieving your objective. So good. This a great piece of horror scoring. As someone who knows and appreciates horror, it put a smile on my face. Really terrific.
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Doug Somers said 1572 days ago (November 2nd, 2012)
Horror Cognoscenti
I'm glad this works for you since I am totally chicken about watching horror movies. I took a stab at what I think the genre sounds like and here we are - at least the sounds creeped me out a bit. :)

Thanks for passing on your kind comments Andy. Mucho appreciato,

Doug
Check out my latest song called Youthful Adventure
Sigmund said 1572 days ago (November 2nd, 2012)
Hilltop Haunted Mansion
Excellent work, Doug. Earlier this year I was asked to score a short horror film. When I started composing I quickly realized I knew absolutely nothing about creating scary music! You, do! Frightfully good!
Sig
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Doug Somers said 1570 days ago (November 4th, 2012)
Thanks Sig
After listening to your string of pro sounding songs I would have thought that you could take on anything you set out to do. Thanks for the kind words on this piece. It's been fun to delve deeper into what composers do to make their work musically effective and then try to reuse that learning in new creations. It has been a fun learning adventure.

Thanks again for coming by.

Be well
Doug
Check out my latest song called Youthful Adventure
jfisenne said 1572 days ago (November 2nd, 2012)
Haunted Mansion
I'm a big fan of Michael Giacchino's scoring for the TV show LOST. I think this piece ranks right up there with some of the stuff he wrote to build drama and tension. Very nice job!
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Doug Somers said 1570 days ago (November 4th, 2012)
TV Composers
There are some really talented people out there working in television scoring. I admit I never saw Lost but given the show's popularity I'm not surprised that the music was a big contributor. I find now when I do watch a show I pay WAY more attention listening to the music than I did even 5 years ago to understand what they are up to. As you say, there is some really effective composing being done (although how they create that amount of work every single week I cannot fathom!)

Thanks for your support and complimentary comparison!

Doug
Check out my latest song called Youthful Adventure
Reinholt56 said 1571 days ago (November 3rd, 2012)
Hi Doug.....
My apologies for being late in dropping by with my comments. I thought that I'd already left my comments, as I heard this wonderful mix when you first uploaded it to the world.

I love the way that you have blended all sorts of interesting and musical elements into a spectacular Halloween mix. The technical aspects of this work don't go un-noticed or appreciated any the less.

Take care.

Paul
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Doug Somers said 1570 days ago (November 4th, 2012)
No apologies necessary
I disappear from MJ for months at a time so please, apologise not Paul. I'm just glad you came in for a listen and were kind enough to leave a note about your reaction to this piece. Thanks!
Doug
Check out my latest song called Youthful Adventure
PeterB7858 said 1570 days ago (November 4th, 2012)
Hilltop Haunted Mansion
This is a tremendous track, Doug. The mix is exceptional. The clarity and dynamics you were able to get made it very revealing and wonderfully "on message" for the challenge. Enjoyed. Thanks, Peter.
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Doug Somers said 1570 days ago (November 4th, 2012)
On message
Thanks Peter, you're kind to say such positive things. I finished this piece in a day which for me is really fast, so if the tune and production are working for you then I must be getting a little more efficient in transcribing ideas to sound. Still I can hear a lot of things I'd tweak or change but that always happens after every post so I have become less sensitive to striving for perfection :)

Cheers mate,
Doug
Check out my latest song called Youthful Adventure
Vic Holman said 1569 days ago (November 4th, 2012)
spook-tacular
would even give vincent price the willies.

the composition is so good it can raise the dead!
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Doug Somers said 1569 days ago (November 5th, 2012)
Price gets the willies
Thanks Vic, glad this chills your blood. I wonder what it is exactly that makes Vincent Price's voice acting so creepily effective? I think I'll stick to music. I appreciate you stopping by!

Doug
Check out my latest song called Youthful Adventure
CIASM_ZENABI_ said 1569 days ago (November 5th, 2012)
haunted
creepy
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Doug Somers said 1567 days ago (November 6th, 2012)
Creepy
Cheers Graham. I appreciate your thoughts.

Doug
Check out my latest song called Youthful Adventure
rok41 said 1569 days ago (November 5th, 2012)
HHM
Wow...Wow...This is incredibly well done. This is impressive, very well conceived and executed...really evokes a reaction. I have no clue on how to do any of this. Thumbs up Doug!
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Doug Somers said 1567 days ago (November 6th, 2012)
Thumbs
Thanks Chris. And I thought this was rushed together. I don't have a clue about putting out something like It's Just as Well either - it leaves me something to work towards. :)

Appreciate your thoughts Chris.
Doug
Check out my latest song called Youthful Adventure
oldlibmike said 1568 days ago (November 5th, 2012)
Hmmmm
Ok...my constructive comment. Dial it down a notch so that you don't show us up :). Next year you are limited to a Casio portable keyboard from the 80s. Great piece!

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Doug Somers said 1567 days ago (November 6th, 2012)
And I gave my Casio away (really)
Thanks for your thoughts and support. Next year I'll only use the white keys :)

Be well,
Doug
Check out my latest song called Youthful Adventure
Diviner said 1568 days ago (November 6th, 2012)
Haunting
Love the metallic screech sound. Cool build up and tension and then thunders to movement, well composed Doug, enjoyed very much
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Doug Somers said 1567 days ago (November 6th, 2012)
Cheers Keith
That metallic sound is a water phone I think, part of a symphonic orchestra package if you can believe it.

Glad you liked it sir,
Doug
Check out my latest song called Youthful Adventure
Jarvoid said 1566 days ago (November 8th, 2012)
Love the bass strings in this...
tres spooky and small hair raising....in fact, sod the small hairs ....some of the big ones got up and ran away too.........and that I cannot afford to let happen !!Super duper....

CJ
Doug Somers said 1565 days ago (November 9th, 2012)
low strings
The masters of old already made lots of effective artistic decisions about which instruments bring forth which kind of emotions. I'm just riding on their coat tails and proving the validity of their original concepts.

Thanks for your enthusiasm Chris! It's always fun to hear what's on your mind.

Cheers,
Doug
Check out my latest song called Youthful Adventure
Mosaica said 1562 days ago (November 12th, 2012)
Seriously spooked...
...by listening to this! Very atmospheric and full of tension with richly textured sounds and blasts yet still musical.
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Doug Somers said 1559 days ago (November 14th, 2012)
Spooked
Hello Rosalind! It's great to hear from you. No nightmares arose from listening I hope. :)

Thanks so much for having a listen and letting me know your thoughts.

Cheers,
Doug
Check out my latest song called Youthful Adventure
Artist Info
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Name: Doug Somers
Location: Ottawa Ontario Canada
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I make music for pleasure, usually using a computer to create soundscapes around all kinds of music. I used to jam with a local celtic group, playing bodhran and 12 string guitar, but I find that my technical and live performance skills fall short o... [see more]

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