Song: King of the Desert

Listen online:last.fm

Download song: mp3 Ogg FLAC MIDI

“King of the Desert” is a new endeavor for me.  In experimenting with some new guitar soundfonts, I’ve really wanted to bust out a powerful rock ‘n roll number.

This is what happened. (Note: the epic metal section kicks in around the 1:30 mark. Wait for it!)

This chord progression has been in the back of my head for awhile, but until this song I hadn’t found a good use for it.  While I like the melody and structure of “King of the Desert,” the real masterpiece is the countless subtle effects used throughout.  The strum of the guitar, the pitch fades on the high power chords, realistic harmonics on the guitar solos – this song is only possible thanks to many subtle, meticulously hand-tuned tweaks. You won’t hear a better hand-edited MIDI guitar track than this.

Creative Commons License

"King of the Desert" by Tanner Helland is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License. Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be obtained here.

This site - and its many free downloads - are 100% funded by donations. Please consider a small contribution to fund server costs and to help me support my family. Even $1.00 helps. Thank you!

Song: A Memory Away

Listen online:last.fm

Download song: mp3 Ogg FLAC MIDI

“A Memory Away” is one of the few songs on this site that – from inspiration to composition – changed hardly at all.  After writing “Faith,” I tested various variations on that same chord progression but was unable to find anything that worked.  It wasn’t until I heard “Not Enough” by OLP (Our Lady Peace), which uses the same chord progression as “Faith” and “A Memory Away,” that I realized the kind of style I wanted to try and achieve with MIDI.  I’d never heard an intelligent pop-rock instrumentation in MIDI, so this was a bit of a gamble.  I worked off the instrument mix OLP provided and put together what I guess is really a variation on “Faith” with a strong OLP presence.  Go figure.

As soon as I heard it, I knew this would be a perfect female character theme for the lead character of Defiance, one of the story premises discussed by the video game team I was working with at the time.  The protagonist of the story was a girl named Cara, who was compared to the main character in the “Underworld” film franchise.  Cara was a strong, action-oriented girl who ended up falling in love with a man she thought she was saving.  Thus the song is a mix of electric guitar and other rock instruments but with a mellow melody.

Technically speaking, the song may not be anything outstanding – but I’m pleased that my first attempt at producing a realistic alternative-type song using nothing but MIDI instruments worked out.  The mp3 version uses a mix of soundfonts and multiple VST effects to create a nice, surprisingly realistic sound.

Creative Commons License

"A Memory Away" by Tanner Helland is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License. Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be obtained here.

This site - and its many free downloads - are 100% funded by donations. Please consider a small contribution to fund server costs and to help me support my family. Even $1.00 helps. Thank you!