This is Perplexia I used a Synth and created drum like sound effects and multiple time signatures to help put the audience in a dreamlike state of mind/being. The lyrics are my most personal to date and are about my learning differences and me coming from overseas and living in multiple locations/countries and family living else where. This is Perplexia Enjoy
This song means the world to me because it’s the first time I have made music that deals with learning differences and it is the most deeply personal song I have written so far. I called it Perplexia to try and capture what it feels like to be confused, unsettled and lonely, but also see the wonder in the world through the eyes of a younger version of myself, growing up with learning differences such as dyslexia and dyspraxia. I was trying to portray my journey by starting with slow spoken-word with piano and then coming in with drums and more tension, frustration, and nervousness. Then, I end up finishing the song more positively from a current perspective.
Intro Bars 1-4 0:00-0:12
The song starts off in 4/4 with a soft, slow, pondering synth line ascending and then descending, playing two chords back and forth. Another synth track is playing swooping high notes in the gaps.
Verse one Bars 5-20 0:13-1:06
The synth line keeps going all the way through and the music gets slowly more developed over time. Some sparse shakers and percussion enter with reverb. The lyrics are performed like spoken word poetry, trying to go for a vibe like The Streets, a UK alternative hip hop group from Birmingham.
Pre chorus Bars 21-23 1:07-1:13
The time signature changes from 4/4 to 3/4 for 2 bars and then one bar of 6/8 to transition to the 6/8 chorus. Some drum hits with kick and snare are introduced.
Chorus Bars 24-39 1:14-1:51The chorus starts with only 5 bars of vocals. Then there are 4 bars of a chromatic instrumental melody that I improvised on the synthesizer. The chorus remains mostly in 6/8 time with some 3/8 bars added at the end of the melody. I wanted it to feel both wandering and wondering, playful but confusing like a jigsaw puzzle of sorts. The chords were based on the melody. The chorus ends with 7 bars of repeating vocals with more space in the last line.
Bar 40 1:52-1:56
A transitional bar of 4/4 returns back to the verse’s time signature.
Verse two Bars 41-49 1:57-2:27
The verse goes back to 4/4 time. The synth melody repeats with different sounds, and the drums are much more active and present than before. Vocal effects are introduced, including an old telephone/radio effect that I use during the verse when I talk about my school experiences in the UK. Then at bar 47, a robot scratch sound comes in briefly to accent the lyrics.
Bars 50-52 2:27-2:32
The song jumps back to two bars of 6/8 plus three beats to throw back to the melody from the chorus.
Verse three Bars 53-61 2:33-3:10
The time signature goes back to 4/4. Now, I don’t use any vocal effects, and in this section, I am talking about my time in American schools. There are now more aggressive synth sounds playing the same verse chords. The drums continue to build up.
Pre chorus Bars 62-64 3:07-3:09
The time signature goes back to 3/4 for 2 bars, and then 6/8 back into the chorus.
Chorus Bars 65-78 3:11-3:47
The chorus repeats. It stays 6/8 with no break this time through.
Vocal Outro Bars 79-83 3:48-3:57
Still in 6/8 time, this is the last time through with vocals and piano. I talk about how my future from the present day looking toward is more hopeful.
Instrumental Outro Perplexia 3 Bars 84-95 3:58-4:28
There are no words in this section and it goes back into 3/4 time signature. It just the piano chorus melody for 6 bars and then chords for 6 bars fading out to give the song and the message some time to sink in.