How to come up with complex and interesting chords?
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Old 14-05-2016, 11:10 PM   #1
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How to come up with complex and interesting chords?

so I was wondering if anyone here has a method to come up with some complex IDM sounding chords, I don't want anyone to do things for me, I just want to find a way to be able to come up with some stuff.

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Old 14-05-2016, 11:14 PM   #2
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Re: how to come up with complex interesting chords

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Old 15-05-2016, 12:22 AM   #3
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Re: how to come up with complex interesting chords

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Originally Posted by mute machine View Post
complex IDM sounding chords
What makes one chord more IDM than another? Sharp? Flat? Minor 7th? Diminished? I could see how the sound that is associated with the chord could be considered IDM, maybe, but not so much the actual chord. As far as the whole IDM thing goes I think it's actually more of a whole picture type thing than what chords you are using. As for sound goes I've heard everything from supersaw pads to low passed strings used in experimental electronic music. We're it me I'd start with the latter were I making IDM these days.

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Old 15-05-2016, 02:59 AM   #4
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Re: how to come up with complex interesting chords

When I am improvising on the piano I will often play things and then just shift the middle note of the chord up or down one half step. So for example if you are playing a C chord CEG, flat or sharp the E to add interest. You can also play in a certain key and then throw in an unexpected key change, or larger fuller chord with a diminished note.

I am not sure how well you know theory but just look up the basic Major and Minor scales and play around with different combinations.
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Old 18-06-2016, 08:22 PM   #5
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Re: how to come up with complex interesting chords

In FL Studio, open the Stamp menu, select Advanced and pick one randomly:
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Old 18-06-2016, 11:24 PM   #6
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Re: how to come up with complex interesting chords

Study jazz.

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Old 18-06-2016, 11:54 PM   #7
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Re: how to come up with complex interesting chords


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Old 19-06-2016, 04:31 AM   #8
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Re: how to come up with complex interesting chords

raven sprial guide to music theory is good and free, google it

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Old 19-06-2016, 08:14 AM   #9
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Re: how to come up with complex interesting chords

Complex chords aren't always the best way to complex sounding harmony. Something to try would be having different instruments make up the notes of a more complex chord. Say having Root and fifth on one instrument then having the colour tones (thirds, sevenths) and extensions (9, 11,13) on other instruments. Coming and going can make some real neat stuff.
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Old 20-06-2016, 12:16 PM   #10
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Re: how to come up with complex interesting chords

There are some nice tools on iOS. I find Cheeky Fingers to be quite helpful, as it shows how to play the chords.

For inspiration, however, I find Suggester a better solution:
Suggester - Chord Progression Tool and Musical Scale Reference by Mathieu Routhier
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Gives you a good environment to play around with chords.
So does Maschine.

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Old 20-07-2016, 02:15 PM   #11
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Re: how to come up with complex interesting chords

I've recently been focused on exploring tone clusters. The harmonies are rich, and finding those sweet 4 or 5-toned chords from clusters makes it somehow easier and/or exciting for me, when I can just whack about on the keyboard and perhaps take one or two tones out, or for example separate the "outmost" ones with a half- or full-step, or the middle ones with a full octave!

Clusters themselves can sound very nice as well, although a bit challenging for an uncustomed ear.

Also abandoning complex harmonies altogether and instead resorting on differing timbres with simpler intervals makes for interesting results.
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Old 20-07-2016, 02:40 PM   #12
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Re: how to come up with complex interesting chords

a nice trick is to play two different chords on top of each other. it's the same as playing extended chords but it's more fun to think of it this way

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Old 21-07-2016, 06:33 PM   #13
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Re: how to come up with complex interesting chords

play chords with different waveform\harmonics, different synth for each note

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Old 21-07-2016, 07:12 PM   #14
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Re: how to come up with complex interesting chords

I found a great way to do this, use the transpose function in abletons sampler (not simpler, it sux) and then start playing fourths and cut out one of the notes, then play a varition with a plucky five note pattern repeated.

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Old 15-08-2016, 01:50 PM   #15
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Re: How to come up with complex and interesting chords?


I want one of these more than my little heart can handle

also I NEED those drums on the intro!! minus the toms of course what do you take me for. could really make something sexy with that groove

EDIT: fuckit, with the toms, I don't care what you think

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Old 15-08-2016, 09:43 PM   #16
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Re: How to come up with complex and interesting chords?


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Old 15-08-2016, 11:38 PM   #17
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Re: How to come up with complex and interesting chords?

Do you mean to experiment without looking through the names of existing chords?
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Old 22-08-2016, 03:43 PM   #18
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Re: How to come up with complex and interesting chords?

I get some interesting chords when my cat walks on my piano
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Old 24-08-2016, 12:30 AM   #19
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Re: how to come up with complex interesting chords

Quote:
Originally Posted by RFJ View Post
What makes one chord more IDM than another? Sharp? Flat? Minor 7th? Diminished? I could see how the sound that is associated with the chord could be considered IDM, maybe, but not so much the actual chord. As far as the whole IDM thing goes I think it's actually more of a whole picture type thing than what chords you are using. As for sound goes I've heard everything from supersaw pads to low passed strings used in experimental electronic music. We're it me I'd start with the latter were I making IDM these days.
Start with what is called a triad, which consists of 3 notes. Traid right!

Root note, third, and fith. Eg. C, E, G.

What makes it major or minor is determined by where the 2nd note falls in relation to your tonic (root note).

E is the 3rd note in the major scale C, D, E, F etc so that makes it a major traid. (C E G)

if we wanted it to be minor we flatten the E to a Dsharpe. Dsharpe is not in the C major scale. Its in the C Minor scale. C, D, Dsharpe etc. so you see this makes up a minor traid.

all of this is relative to diatonic harmony.

So you see, Triads are not just Chinese gangsters form GTA, they have also infiltrated the realms of chord construction.

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Old 24-08-2016, 12:42 AM   #20
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Re: How to come up with complex and interesting chords?

^Nah dude, I understand that.

In the OP mute machine says "IDM sounding chords." I wanted to know what exactly makes a certain chord sound more "IDM" than another in his mind because I don't think it works like that. Read my post again and you'll see I'm not asking about basic theory.

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