Jump to content


Uncommon time signatures


  • Please log in to reply
158 replies to this topic

#1 TehFix0r

TehFix0r

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 2,210 posts

Posted 23 September 2008 - 03:13 PM

What's everyone's opinion on musicians that make use of odd time counts in their songs? Not necessarily for the sake of it, but because that happens to be what it is. Like Tool for example, and their use of things like 5/4 and 19/16 etc.

I tend to stray away from the more common signatures... much of my music ends up in 7/8 or 5/4 or something. 35/32 in recent times. What.

Quote

Quote

I am currently too drunk to make a valuable contribution to this thread.

Best post ever

#2 king_chicken

king_chicken

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 1,684 posts
  • Locationclaremont

Posted 23 September 2008 - 05:43 PM

lol pretty sure that tool go out of there way to use odd time signatures, but yeah i think if it sounds good then it sounds good
www.myspace.com/screaminglife

drum lessons?
http://www.musicteac...cussion-lessons

#3 Damo

Damo

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 2,064 posts
  • LocationPerth

Posted 23 September 2008 - 05:49 PM

Ive been involved with bands that have been pretty obscure with time signatures. Its a good thing to do if the music warrants it, but its certainly not 'clever' to use an obscure time signature for the sake of it and ruin the flow of the song. Many prog bands are guilty of this.

Remember that time signatures can be broken down into 2's and 3's for the most part, so no time signature should be harder to play than another. Making them feel natural is the tough bit.

#4 king_chicken

king_chicken

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 1,684 posts
  • Locationclaremont

Posted 23 September 2008 - 06:53 PM

if you want to hear a prime example of this, check out the joshua redman tune "still pushing that rock" from his album elastic. it's 7/8 but it's stupidly fast so it flows really well.
www.myspace.com/screaminglife

drum lessons?
http://www.musicteac...cussion-lessons

#5 The Day After

The Day After

    Advanced Member

  • Perthbands Reviewer
  • PipPipPip
  • 5,219 posts

Posted 23 September 2008 - 08:43 PM


haha jake, you would start this thread!  :lol:

I reckon "odd" time signatures can sound great, but generally if, ironically, they don't sound odd at all. I love the way The Mars Volta use rhythm. Even when it's not a particularly obscure signature, whacky syncopation can sound awesome. you've got your mission impossible and take fives where 5/4 doesn't even sound the least bit odd, just works. and I particularly dig stuff in 7. haha "tom sawyer" by Rush.

time wank for its own sake is fairly silly. but mind bending madness can be fun.
SEAMS | Heathcote Blue | Solar Barge | The Brow | [url=http://www.myspace.com/bluetonguebeats]Blue Tongue

#6 theodore_mage

theodore_mage

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 28 posts
  • LocationPerth

Posted 25 September 2008 - 11:53 AM

I use odd signatures all the time (11/8  13/8 are my most used), i believe its all about creating melodies and rhythms that actually allow for the signatures to be used, other than just throwing one in, which is fun in its own way.
I see what others can, and then what I cannot.

#7 Chad Burger

Chad Burger

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 980 posts
  • Locationum...Perth

Posted 28 September 2008 - 02:08 AM

Local gems Petanque fiddle with unusual time signatures, to great effect in my humble opinion.
Mighty Warrior Of Metal

www.burgersofbeef.com
www.myspace.com/burgersofbeef

#8 2112

2112

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 705 posts

Posted 06 October 2008 - 06:17 PM

most people make a big deal of it to seem clever, but in reality its not harder or more interesting than 4/4; it all depends on the context. stuff like 'tom sawyer' and 'freewill' by rush make great use of odd times, and 'in the dead of night' by UK is a great example of catchy 7/4. also stuff like 80's king crimson, trying to fuse gamelan music and rock is really cool.

however because most western musicians use 4/4 exclusively, experimenting with odd time signatures usually makes us go 'holy shit, THIS is cool' and opens up alot of creative doors. like all artistic techniques if its done in context and tastefully it works great, but often gets maligned because people get nerdy about!
Leon Todd
0402 539 907

Guitarist for Ragdoll www.ragdollrock.com

Music Tuition - Guitar, Bass and Music Theory

#9 Damo

Damo

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 2,064 posts
  • LocationPerth

Posted 07 October 2008 - 06:49 AM

Yep, and remember that most anything can be broken down into 2's and 3's anyway.

#10 2112

2112

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 705 posts

Posted 08 October 2008 - 07:35 PM

Quote

Yep, and remember that most anything can be broken down into 2's and 3's anyway.
yeah thats something alot of people forget....i remember realising that and going 'oh hang on, this makes so much more sense now!'. the cool thing is theres always more than one way to count out the time, and another important aspect is what notes in the bar you choose to accent.....at the end of the day its all about the groove!

king crimsons 'discipline' album is a real good place to start if you want to hear some sublime use of odd times and rhythms....
Leon Todd
0402 539 907

Guitarist for Ragdoll www.ragdollrock.com

Music Tuition - Guitar, Bass and Music Theory

#11 The Day After

The Day After

    Advanced Member

  • Perthbands Reviewer
  • PipPipPip
  • 5,219 posts

Posted 10 October 2008 - 12:12 AM

Quote


king crimsons 'discipline' album is a real good place to start if you want to hear some sublime use of odd times and rhythms....

been blasting this lately...killer album!

also, had '15 step' - radiohead in my own head most of yesterday and today. surely one of the greatest 5/4 songs ever...
SEAMS | Heathcote Blue | Solar Barge | The Brow | [url=http://www.myspace.com/bluetonguebeats]Blue Tongue

#12 2112

2112

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 705 posts

Posted 10 October 2008 - 03:42 PM

Quote

Quote


king crimsons 'discipline' album is a real good place to start if you want to hear some sublime use of odd times and rhythms....

been blasting this lately...killer album!

also, had '15 step' - radiohead in my own head most of yesterday and today. surely one of the greatest 5/4 songs ever...

yeah 'discipline' makes me want to go and learn how to play the chapman stick.....5/4 is such an underrated groovy time signature!
Leon Todd
0402 539 907

Guitarist for Ragdoll www.ragdollrock.com

Music Tuition - Guitar, Bass and Music Theory

#13 Guest_tomsquad_*

Guest_tomsquad_*
  • Guests

Posted 11 October 2008 - 06:13 PM

teh shaggs are teh kingz of uncommon time signatures.


#14 TehFix0r

TehFix0r

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 2,210 posts

Posted 11 October 2008 - 06:42 PM

Quote

Quote


king crimsons 'discipline' album is a real good place to start if you want to hear some sublime use of odd times and rhythms....

been blasting this lately...killer album!

also, had '15 step' - radiohead in my own head most of yesterday and today. surely one of the greatest 5/4 songs ever...

I think Tool's Vicarious also qualifies for that. The entire thing's in 5/4 but it's just so natural you wouldn't guess.

Quote

Quote

I am currently too drunk to make a valuable contribution to this thread.

Best post ever

#15 2112

2112

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 705 posts

Posted 11 October 2008 - 07:23 PM

gustav holst's 'mars- bringer of war' from the planets suite is arguably the most recognisable piece of music in 5/4.......it rocks hard for a classical piece!
Leon Todd
0402 539 907

Guitarist for Ragdoll www.ragdollrock.com

Music Tuition - Guitar, Bass and Music Theory

#16 Damo

Damo

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 2,064 posts
  • LocationPerth

Posted 12 October 2008 - 12:17 PM

^ Id say that title goes to Dave Brubeck Quartets 'Take 5'!

#17 king_chicken

king_chicken

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 1,684 posts
  • Locationclaremont

Posted 12 October 2008 - 01:05 PM

how about mission impossible?
www.myspace.com/screaminglife

drum lessons?
http://www.musicteac...cussion-lessons

#18 TehFix0r

TehFix0r

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 2,210 posts

Posted 13 October 2008 - 12:14 PM

Quote

gustav holst's 'mars- bringer of war' from the planets suite is arguably the most recognisable piece of music in 5/4.......it rocks hard for a classical piece!

I used to be obsessed with Holst's 'The Planets.' I'm gonna go listen to them now, thanks heaps for reminding me of them!

Quote

Quote

I am currently too drunk to make a valuable contribution to this thread.

Best post ever

#19 squareDeers

squareDeers

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 50 posts

Posted 02 December 2008 - 03:54 PM

if they're done well you don't notice

#20 Chorkstain

Chorkstain

    Newbie

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 3 posts

Posted 11 March 2009 - 06:30 PM

I love weird time signatures, personally I don't worry too much about whether I'm being indulgent or not. Once I develop a feel for a time signature, it sounds good to me anyway.

I was thinking the other day about it, and I figure that one of the things that brings significance to weird time signatures is the sense of it changing, so if you played three bars in 7 8, and then played a fourth bar in 8 8, there's a delay for that eighth which has a strange sense of rhythmic tension, although 8 8 always feels stable for some reason. Time signatures like 7 8 or 5 4 always feel like they're switching back and forth for each bar, but if it's 7 4 or 5 4 I don't feel that sensation.




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users