#1
Well, first off, I want to get into learning some theory and such, so I can have a better... 'vocabulary' for writing. I like stuff that sounds in general dark, though not necessarily depressed or anything. I'm guessing that would be stuff in minor, but do any more specific things sound darker? Like, A Minor, or A Hungarian Minor or whatever?

Also, what does Marty Friedman commonly use? He is absolutely my favorite/second favorite guitarist ever, depending on the day How about Paul Gilbert? He's my other favorite!

I'd also like to know what Adam Jones is using at the beginning of Schism by Tool That's really the kind of dark sounding stuff I like.


Thanks!
#3
Quote by Jazzcore23
d minor- the saddest of all keys



I don't want to instantly weep when I play though!

Haha, any other suggestions you's guys?
#4
for darker sounding stuff i play phrygian, locrian, and harmonic minor
Self proclaimed prophets are great people...
#5
Quote by Jazzcore23
d minor- the saddest of all keys

I totally agree, I love D minor.

But also F and G minor.
#6
I found this very interesting excerpt that describes the mood each key produces. All of this can be debatable but it gives an idea of what each of these keys sound like:

AFFECTIVE KEY CHARACTERISTICS
from Christian Schubart's Ideen zu einer Aesthetik der Tonkunst (1806)

C Major
Completely Pure. Its character is: innocence, simplicity, naïvety, children's talk.

C Minor
Declaration of love and at the same time the lament of unhappy love. All languishing, longing, sighing of the love-sick soul lies in this key.

Db Major
A leering key, degenerating into grief and rapture. It cannot laugh, but it can smile; it cannot howl, but it can at least grimace its crying.--Consequently only unusual characters and feelings can be brought out in this key.

C# Minor
Penitential lamentation, intimate conversation with God, the friend and help-meet of life; sighs of disappointed friendship and love lie in its radius.

D Major
The key of triumph, of Hallejuahs, of war-cries, of victory-rejoicing. Thus, the inviting symphonies, the marches, holiday songs and heaven-rejoicing choruses are set in this key.

D Minor
Melancholy womanliness, the spleen and humours brood.

Eb Major
The key of love, of devotion, of intimate conversation with God.

D# Minor
Feelings of the anxiety of the soul's deepest distress, of brooding despair, of blackest depresssion, of the most gloomy condition of the soul. Every fear, every hesitation of the shuddering heart, breathes out of horrible D# minor. If ghosts could speak, their speech would approximate this key.

E Major
Noisy shouts of joy, laughing pleasure and not yet complete, full delight lies in E Major.

E minor
Naïve, womanly innocent declaration of love, lament without grumbling; sighs accompanied by few tears; this key speaks of the imminent hope of resolving in the pure happiness of C major.

F Major
Complaisance & Calm.

F Minor
Deep depression, funereal lament, groans of misery and longing for the grave.

F# Major
Triumph over difficulty, free sigh of relief utered when hurdles are surmounted; echo of a soul which has fiercely struggled and finally conquered lies in all uses of this key.

F# Minor
A gloomy key: it tugs at passion as a dog biting a dress. Resentment and discontent are its language.

G Major
Everything rustic, idyllic and lyrical, every calm and satisfied passion, every tender gratitude for true friendship and faithful love,--in a word every gentle and peaceful emotion of the heart is correctly expressed by this key.

G Minor
Discontent, uneasiness, worry about a failed scheme; bad-tempered gnashing of teeth; in a word: resentment and dislike.

Ab Major
Key of the grave. Death, grave, putrefaction, judgment, eternity lie in its radius.

Ab Minor
Grumbler, heart squeezed until it suffocates; wailing lament, difficult struggle; in a word, the color of this key is everything struggling with difficulty.

A Major
This key includes declarations of innocent love, satisfaction with one's state of affairs; hope of seeing one's beloved again when parting; youthful cheerfulness and trust in God.

A minor
Pious womanliness and tenderness of character.

Bb Major
Cheerful love, clear conscience, hope aspiration for a better world.

Bb minor
A quaint creature, often dressed in the garment of night. It is somewhat surly and very seldom takes on a pleasant countenance. Mocking God and the world; discontented with itself and with everything; preparation for suicide sounds in this key.

B Major
Strongly coloured, announcing wild passions, composed from the most glaring colours. Anger, rage, jealousy, fury, despair and every burden of the heart lies in its sphere.

B Minor
This is as it were the key of patience, of calm awaiting ones's fate and of submission to divine dispensation.
Last edited by TrasherFromHell at Feb 19, 2009,
#7
Quote by TrasherFromHell
I found this very interesting excerpt that describes the mood each key produces. All of this can be debatable but it gives an idea of what each of these keys sound like


No, not really. We use equal temperament now.
Someones knowledge of guitar companies spelling determines what amps you can own. Really smart people can own things like Framus because they sound like they might be spelled with a "y" but they aren't.
#8
Quote by Archeo Avis
No, not really. We use equal temperament now.


Yes I know, but it can help give an idea of what key to use for a certain mood that you're trying to evoke. You don't have to follow it but it can give some ideas to mess around with; I just thought it was interesting to look at how the keys might be/might have been used for expressing different thoughts.
#9
Quote by Trasher
*nonsense*


What is this crap, it's clearly just some wanker's opinion. There's no basis in any of it.
Last edited by Roast Beef at Feb 19, 2009,
#10
Quote by TrasherFromHell
D# Minor
Feelings of the anxiety of the soul's deepest distress, of brooding despair, of blackest depresssion, of the most gloomy condition of the soul. Every fear, every hesitation of the shuddering heart, breathes out of horrible D# minor. If ghosts could speak, their speech would approximate this key.



whatever temperament was in use at that time, I'd love to mess with an instrument made for that to see what that sounds like. cuz that would be awesome!
#11
Quote by Roast Beef
What is this crap, it's clearly just some wanker's opinion. There's no basis in any of it.


That's why I said it's a debatable opinion, you don't have to agree with it entirely is just for some ideas.
#12
now you know what kind of scales to use, that'll help.

but to sound "dark" its more about HOW you use the scales, rather than what scales you use.

try long drones, dissonance, #7's (from the harmonic minor.)

remember, those same eight notes that people have recomended for a "dark" sound, also make a happy one. its all about how you use them
#13
The harmonic minor scale contains a natural seventh: #7=8=1. Scales are always compared to their parallel major scale.

That Tool song uses D natural minor almost exclusively if I recall correctly. Natural minor is generally quite dark, in any key, though.

That list of keys and associated sounds is ridiculous.
#14
Quote by bangoodcharlote
The harmonic minor scale contains a natural seventh: #7=8=1. Scales are always compared to their parallel major scale.
.


oh true, my bad. so its the natural minor that has the flattened seventh, since the harmonic minor seventh is the same as the major seventh.

sweet.
#15
instead of focusing on what scale you're using, you should be more concerned with chords and melodies if you are trying to evoke a mood. i guess you're on the right track.
#16
Minor scales can sound darker than major scales, although major scales are perfectly able to sound dark. It's all about phrasing, note choice and how the rest of your song is arranged.
You'd have to know how to use minor scales though, like if you wanted to resolve with the seventh note of the scale (that's a G in A minor), you'd have to raise it (so it becomes G#). Most people think when you're writing you should use one minor scale exclusively, not true. You use a combination.

BTW, locrian is a joke, modal music is archaic and non-western scales shouldn't be used in western music
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#17
E minor
Naïve, womanly innocent declaration of love, lament without grumbling; sighs accompanied by few tears; this key speaks of the imminent hope of resolving in the pure happiness of C major.


Schubert should have added...
'Reminds me of generic lazy guitarists who cant be arsed writing in another key ever'
#18
Whenever I play the harmonic minor scale, it sounds arabian or spanish instead of classical. I guess its my phrasing...
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#19
Quote by TrasherFromHell
That's why I said it's a debatable opinion, you don't have to agree with it entirely is just for some ideas.


I don't agree with it at all. In equal temperament, every key is the same. There's no strongly coloured dogs biting on dresses whilst conversing with God.
#20
Quote by areola
Whenever I play the harmonic minor scale, it sounds arabian or spanish instead of classical. I guess its my phrasing...
It's cause you're doing it wrong. You're meant to avoid the augmented second melodic interval, which is what makes it sound eastern and what makes it unsingable (and therefore not likely to be catchy)
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#21
Quote by demonofthenight
It's cause you're doing it wrong. You're meant to avoid the augmented second melodic interval, which is what makes it sound eastern and what makes it unsingable (and therefore not likely to be catchy)


It's more that it disrupts the melodic flow. A singer's inability to manage the interval wouldn't have been a problem for music composed on a piano and played by an orchestra (and I strongly doubt that a well trained singer would have much trouble with the interval, given that many vocal works involve even larger melodic leaps (Bach's St. Matthew Passion comes to mind)).
Someones knowledge of guitar companies spelling determines what amps you can own. Really smart people can own things like Framus because they sound like they might be spelled with a "y" but they aren't.
#22
Quote by areola
Whenever I play the harmonic minor scale, it sounds arabian or spanish instead of classical. I guess its my phrasing...



You are probably playing phrygian dominant (5th mode of the harmonic minor scale).

Play a solo in for instance A Harmonic minor, and check too see if the resolving note/chord is E (Major)

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#23
Quote by Archeo Avis
It's more that it...mind)).
Eddie sings a tritone interval in Pearl Jam's Even Flow, right?

I know I've had to sing nonscalar melodies in high school choir class, so it's certainly possible and not weird.