Approaching The Beach: creating a soundscape
Updated: Feb 17, 2020
In December last year, I set about creating a soundscape inspired by the events on the Normandy Beaches on D-Day 1944.
The inspiration for the piece came after reading the book D Day by Stephen Ambrose, in particular Chapter 17: Visitors to Hell which details the Allied Invasion of the Normandy Beaches in France, specifically the battle to take Omaha Beach.
The piece starts with a low drone in C before moving into a minor chord progression which then builds to a climactic ending. The majority of sounds used in the piece were created on a stereo instrument track using the virtual instrument Plug In Xpand within Pro Tools.
I then created reverb, delay and effects busses to manipulate the sounds further. By adding reverb and delay to the drone sounds I was able to construct a large foundation on which to build the rest of the track.
Two separate reverb busses were used for drones and drums in order for them to be treated differently and an analogue tape delay was used with a long feedback setting to almost continually loop the different sounds.
A Manny Maraqand Plugin was used on the effects bus which enabled me to apply delay, phasing and distortion. Automation was used on the effects bus so that the phasing and distortion could be introduced gradually as the track builds and then faded out again as the track closes.