#1
im not trying to zerox copy them (as cedric would say), but they're a huge influence and i want some of my songs to have that same kinda feel as them. for some reason i always end up sounding more like rush than mars volta, and i really like rush but thats just not the sound im looking for. im trying to mix all my biggest influences which also include fall of troy, rx bandits, larry harlow, pink floyd, and king crimson. other than king crimson and mars volta (im more concerned with volta), i could write songs that sound like any of those bands or combinations, but its just trying to write anything half as amazing as omar does really frustrates me!
i think a key part of it is all the effects, but i cant afford any pedals or anything so that option's out does any1 else write music that sounds anything like that, and think you can give me some tips on it? thanks!
#2
Well if you dont have alot of pedals dont expect to sound like him,If I remember he uses ALOT of them.
Listen to every song they have,take 1 song that you like the most and start analyzing it musically,What key is the song in,What scale,Do they go outside the scale,Do they use tension chords and etc.
That will help you understand more what they are doing in their songs.
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#3
Quote by GbAdimDb5m7
Well if you dont have alot of pedals dont expect to sound like him,If I remember he uses ALOT of them.
Listen to every song they have,take 1 song that you like the most and start analyzing it musically,What key is the song in,What scale,Do they go outside the scale,Do they use tension chords and etc.
That will help you understand more what they are doing in their songs.

they're actually so dissonant all the time that its like impossible to figure out the keys. omar doesnt know theory, it makes it really hard to analyze his songs with theory. ill keep trying tho
#4
So much pretension in this thread :/
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#5
Quote by Seyda
So much pretension in this thread :/

i dont understand big words...but i like to use words that im not sure even exist but sound like they describe fat people, such as jealatinous
#6
Quote by TMVATDI
they're actually so dissonant all the time that its like impossible to figure out the keys. omar doesnt know theory, it makes it really hard to analyze his songs with theory. ill keep trying tho


So if you know it's so dissonant go and try to find some dissonant chords that work and build a melody around them.
Quote by tattyreagh
He's the hero The Pit deserves but not the one it needs right now. So, we'll hunt him, because he can take it. Because he's not our hero. He's a silent guardian. A watchful protector. GbAdimDb5m7.


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#7
Quote by TMVATDI
they're actually so dissonant all the time that its like impossible to figure out the keys. omar doesnt know theory, it makes it really hard to analyze his songs with theory. ill keep trying tho


I find it very hard to believe that Omar doesn't know any music theory. I know that his Wiki page claims he is "ignorant to music theory", but listen to anything with his Quartet, or with John Frusciante. There are a series of YouTube videos of a jam with Omar, Flea, and Froosh. Listen to what they're playing and then try to tell me Omar doesn't know theory. They jump around so much and so quickly, if he didn't know any theory he'd be lost.

Regarless, you can still analyze his songs. Sure he adds a lot of dissonance, but there are definite tonal centers to their songs. Figure out what the tonal center is and go from there. I guarantee they modulate quite a bit, and this might be difficult to pick up, but just have some patience, do a bit of work, and it'll pay off!
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#8
Try learning a few of there songs all the way through, you'll start picking up on what voicings he likes to use, and the type of chord movement he prefers. Also, go a month listening to nothing but Mars Volta, except with maybe a little ATDI thrown in, and see if that helps.
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#10
Couple things about Omar Rodriguez, the guitarist from ATDI and Mars Volta.

In one of his interviews I read that his approach can be summed up as "trying to make the guitar sound like anything except a guitar." To do this, he will create melodies not really built around scales (that he knows, at least) and will just try to make up a scale for the melody, although in actuality it is probably part of a scale that already exists. Go read the Guitar Grimoire: Scales and Modes book if you don't believe me.

Another thing he does to achieve this is he works with a sound engineer and effects to make the guitar sound as unique as possible. This isn't to say the sound engineer is responsible for Omar's sound; in the interview, Omar said he'd often do the opposite of what the sound engineer said to do.

One last thing about Omar - he didn't really grow up playing guitar, but he did grow up in a musical family. Often his father would play rhythm games with him on some kind of percussion instrument, I forgot what. If you're serious about trying to write like Omar, you better get serious about rhythm and start experimenting and practicing in a variety unusual time signatures.

So, by keeping these points in mind and studying his music, you should be able to hear his influence in your music without copying him outright.
#11
do you have any LSD? :p

step 1: drop some acid
step 2: lots of effects
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#12
Quote by STONESHAKER
Couple things about Omar Rodriguez, the guitarist from ATDI and Mars Volta.

In one of his interviews I read that his approach can be summed up as "trying to make the guitar sound like anything except a guitar." To do this, he will create melodies not really built around scales (that he knows, at least) and will just try to make up a scale for the melody, although in actuality it is probably part of a scale that already exists. Go read the Guitar Grimoire: Scales and Modes book if you don't believe me.

Another thing he does to achieve this is he works with a sound engineer and effects to make the guitar sound as unique as possible. This isn't to say the sound engineer is responsible for Omar's sound; in the interview, Omar said he'd often do the opposite of what the sound engineer said to do.

One last thing about Omar - he didn't really grow up playing guitar, but he did grow up in a musical family. Often his father would play rhythm games with him on some kind of percussion instrument, I forgot what. If you're serious about trying to write like Omar, you better get serious about rhythm and start experimenting and practicing in a variety unusual time signatures.

So, by keeping these points in mind and studying his music, you should be able to hear his influence in your music without copying him outright.

thanks
unfortunately angusman, i do not have any acid
#13
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JJnzDnhMyxU

This guy playing the songs on acoustic is a pretty good resource. You can see how brilliant a guitarist Omar is behind his effects too.
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#14
Quote by Angusman60
do you have any LSD? :p

step 1: drop some acid
step 2: lots of effects


There's a lot of truth to this too. At the Drive-In was known for partying preeetty hard...
#15
I learnt to play lead guitar by listening to Omar (I was already an advanced bass player and therefore knew my theory however). The thing with Omar is that a lot of the time he will ignore theory on purpose, despite the fact that as someone said it will always fit in key somehow. The way I did it was jammed around using the harmonic minor until I was comfortable and then started adding weird notes in. After a while you'll get the hang of which notes you can add.

Another thing I noticed is that Omar's technique can be very sloppy, especially when he's doing those thrashy alternate picked dissonant runs. I reckon he deos this on purpose to an extent by just attacking his guitar with a lot of force and passion.

Finally, on record, Omar layers a hell of a lot. Which is why I dont think he's as ignorant to theory as he makes out, some of the harmonies between the guitars (especially on frances the mute) are great and he spends a lot of time making sur ethey stand well together in the mix, by which I mean where they are panned, which frequency range they are in and of course volume level.
#16
Quote by STONESHAKER
There's a lot of truth to this too. At the Drive-In was known for partying preeetty hard...

Well, I wouldn't necessarily describe acid as a party drug...
Oh yeah.

Quote by hildesaw
A minor is the saddest of all keys.

EDIT: D minor is the saddest of all keys.
#17
Quote by hockeyplayer168
Well, I wouldn't necessarily describe acid as a party drug...


True, and ATDI were more known for crack than acid. Especially Cedric and Omar.
#18
Quote by ImaHighwayChile
True, and ATDI were more known for crack than acid. Especially Cedric and Omar.

Crack is the best!
Oh yeah.

Quote by hildesaw
A minor is the saddest of all keys.

EDIT: D minor is the saddest of all keys.
#19
Quote by ImaHighwayChile
I learnt to play lead guitar by listening to Omar (I was already an advanced bass player and therefore knew my theory however). The thing with Omar is that a lot of the time he will ignore theory on purpose, despite the fact that as someone said it will always fit in key somehow. The way I did it was jammed around using the harmonic minor until I was comfortable and then started adding weird notes in. After a while you'll get the hang of which notes you can add.

Another thing I noticed is that Omar's technique can be very sloppy, especially when he's doing those thrashy alternate picked dissonant runs. I reckon he deos this on purpose to an extent by just attacking his guitar with a lot of force and passion.

Finally, on record, Omar layers a hell of a lot. Which is why I dont think he's as ignorant to theory as he makes out, some of the harmonies between the guitars (especially on frances the mute) are great and he spends a lot of time making sur ethey stand well together in the mix, by which I mean where they are panned, which frequency range they are in and of course volume level.

looks very informative, thanks !
i was camping the last couple days, which is why i wasnt responding to anything.
cedric and omar did a lot of opium and shit but claimed to quit after jeremy ward died of a heroine overdose, now they say they only do pot, or at least cedric does.
forkman, i saw those vids, and some piano covers, have you seen those? you should look them up, they're amazing, he plays like the vocal melodies on the right hand and guitar/bass/piano part on his left. the reason neither of them help me much is because TMV songs are so fast its hard to follow what these musicians hands are doing, but ill try again cuz i didnt really pay attention when i 1st watched those videos.