Anthem Style Melodies?

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Anthem Style Melodies?

Postby Friv » 23 Mar 2013 14:14

I've been burying my face in music theory lessons lately and there's still one thing I really can't figure out. How do mainstream musicians write their catchy/cliche "anthem" melodies? Do any of you have any tips or advice for how to write in this style?
[Examples]
https://soundcloud.com/cashcash/krewella-alive-cash-cash-kalkutta

[youtube]www.youtube.com/watch?v=hCiHhjJfrzo[/youtube]
about 15s in

[youtube]www.youtube.com/watch?v=1CHVVstR7F0[/youtube]
about 2m15s in

edit: guess the youtube embed won't work just copy-paste the links
Last edited by Friv on 23 Mar 2013 14:57, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Anthem Style Melodies?

Postby v.lossity » 23 Mar 2013 14:57

I have been working on this exact thing. What I have discovered is that I need to dumb everything down, simplify everything and use more repetition. Repetition is big. I find most anthemic melodies have some kind of rhythmic pattern that is repeated. It was also helpful for me to start by mimicking Archie. A lot of his melodies are rhythmically quite simple, while still being catchy and exciting.

I think the rest is just practice.
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Re: Anthem Style Melodies?

Postby FLAOFEI » 23 Mar 2013 15:47

Idk, but everything seems to me have an identical rythm in the melody to me... If that makes any sense...
Listen to 1:03 and a few seconds forward.

Start with a supersaw or something every 3/4 of a beat. (like the bass at 1:03 forward)
After a few bars change so it has some some sort of chord progression or something.
From that... improvise I guess. Congratulations! You have a boring song... If you want something that dose not sound identical to every dance song on the radio today, sorry, cant help.
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Re: Anthem Style Melodies?

Postby hackd » 23 Mar 2013 16:02

I can't recite any specific theory rules, but a lot of it comes from just playing with tension before resolving. Like v.lossity said, it's probably best not to over do it. I know when I try to write catchy melodies I just kind of experiment a bunch, but then I cut a lot of it to catch the general ideas and then I build off of those.

Someone who knows more about this will probably explain it better, but definitely look up cadences. I know IV - I (plagal), VI - V (deceptive), and V or vii to I are all solid resolutions (what you would end the phrase/verse with). I know V to I is always the basis of harmony, but everyone knows that.
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Re: Anthem Style Melodies?

Postby Friv » 23 Mar 2013 16:08

FLAOFEI wrote:Idk, but everything seems to me have an identical rythm in the melody to me... If that makes any sense...
Listen to 1:03 and a few seconds forward.

Start with a supersaw or something every 3/4 of a beat. (like the bass at 1:03 forward)
After a few bars change so it has some some sort of chord progression or something.
From that... improvise I guess. Congratulations! You have a boring song... If you want something that dose not sound identical to every dance song on the radio today, sorry, cant help.

Thanks for telling me how to write triplets....
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Re: Anthem Style Melodies?

Postby colortwelve » 23 Mar 2013 16:45

This is probably my best anthemic-type melody:

https://soundcloud.com/colortwelve/hacksaw-instrumental-demo

I maintained a very strict rhythmic structure throughout, and tried to keep most of the motion in the melody confined to stepwise motion. I also did some rudimentary counterpoint under the melody to make it a bit more interesting, but the melody itself is pretty simple.
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Re: Anthem Style Melodies?

Postby froggy » 23 Mar 2013 17:06

Take a look at some of the MIDI files that Archie has made public and see if you can break them down into their component pieces, having examples has always helped for me

Have some Archie stems
http://www.mediafire.com/download.php?8a7ooydd13wddzo
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Re: Anthem Style Melodies?

Postby bartekko » 23 Mar 2013 17:17

Friv wrote:
FLAOFEI wrote:Idk, but everything seems to me have an identical rythm in the melody to me... If that makes any sense...
Listen to 1:03 and a few seconds forward.

Start with a supersaw or something every 3/4 of a beat. (like the bass at 1:03 forward)
After a few bars change so it has some some sort of chord progression or something.
From that... improvise I guess. Congratulations! You have a boring song... If you want something that dose not sound identical to every dance song on the radio today, sorry, cant help.

Thanks for telling me how to write triplets....

these are dotted 8ths tho
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Re: Anthem Style Melodies?

Postby Friv » 23 Mar 2013 17:21

bartekko wrote:
Friv wrote:
FLAOFEI wrote:Idk, but everything seems to me have an identical rythm in the melody to me... If that makes any sense...
Listen to 1:03 and a few seconds forward.

Start with a supersaw or something every 3/4 of a beat. (like the bass at 1:03 forward)
After a few bars change so it has some some sort of chord progression or something.
From that... improvise I guess. Congratulations! You have a boring song... If you want something that dose not sound identical to every dance song on the radio today, sorry, cant help.

Thanks for telling me how to write triplets....

these are dotted 8ths tho

You're right, this is what happens when I post something on the internet after not getting any sleep in the past two days >.< Plus when I made that post I was referring to the fact that the rythm is really simple while I was talking about melody...
Last edited by Friv on 23 Mar 2013 17:24, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Anthem Style Melodies?

Postby TranquilHooves » 23 Mar 2013 17:22

bartekko wrote:
Friv wrote:
FLAOFEI wrote:Idk, but everything seems to me have an identical rythm in the melody to me... If that makes any sense...
Listen to 1:03 and a few seconds forward.

Start with a supersaw or something every 3/4 of a beat. (like the bass at 1:03 forward)
After a few bars change so it has some some sort of chord progression or something.
From that... improvise I guess. Congratulations! You have a boring song... If you want something that dose not sound identical to every dance song on the radio today, sorry, cant help.

Thanks for telling me how to write triplets....

these are dotted 8ths tho

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Re: Anthem Style Melodies?

Postby v.lossity » 23 Mar 2013 22:18

hackd wrote:I can't recite any specific theory rules, but a lot of it comes from just playing with tension before resolving. Like v.lossity said, it's probably best not to over do it. I know when I try to write catchy melodies I just kind of experiment a bunch, but then I cut a lot of it to catch the general ideas and then I build off of those.

Someone who knows more about this will probably explain it better, but definitely look up cadences. I know IV - I (plagal), VI - V (deceptive), and V or vii to I are all solid resolutions (what you would end the phrase/verse with). I know V to I is always the basis of harmony, but everyone knows that.


Yeah just Google it. Because I'm fairly certain a deceptive cadence is from V to anything other than I because V is expected to resolve to I. but if you go to vi for example, its a deceptive cadence. But don't take my word for it. Just read up.
Another thing I like to do is play with some chords with my left hand while I come up with melodies with my right. This helps for setting up a specific mood because you can use these cadences to set up the mood, and then come up with a melody to fit. I find its much harder the other way around. Thats just me.
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Re: Anthem Style Melodies?

Postby Lying Pink » 24 Mar 2013 07:56

Yeah, I'd agree with the simplicity thing. For the anthemic parts, keep the underlying rhythm easy to grasp and the melody memorable. The acid test is - if you played your song to a drunk person in a club, would they be able to sing along with your anthem bit? (When I'm writing stuff like that - probably related to the drunk clubber test - I often find I get better results if I work out the anthem melody by singing rather than playing an instrument. If you can sing it, that's half the battle.)
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Re: Anthem Style Melodies?

Postby FLAOFEI » 24 Mar 2013 16:14

bartekko wrote:
Friv wrote:
FLAOFEI wrote:Stupid post

Sorta ironic post "thanking" FLAOFEI

Post correcting the ironic post

My point was "start with tripplets (or whatever the fuck they are) on a single chord, then write whatever sounds good"
Also, that's what happens when I'm tired, bored and don't have anything valuable to contribute... Sorry bout that. :oops:

As far as I know there is no code to crack in making anthem style melodies.
Repetition helps, starting every bar (or 2 bars or 4) with the same sample on the same note, then switching to another sound for some melody seems to be a popular one to...
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Re: Anthem Style Melodies?

Postby Friv » 24 Mar 2013 17:15

Well I'm pretty much done with this site (it wasn't about the April Fool's joke I actually loved that). If for some reason somebody wants to contact me or something (not like any of you even care lol):
email: [email protected]
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Re: Anthem Style Melodies?

Postby Majora MIM » 24 Mar 2013 17:17

Melody is a thing, but never overlook the rythm.
It's just as important.
Add a tiny little bit of groove to the drums, like doubling the kick once in a while or adding some more exotic percussions (clavas, toms, reversed claps etc...).
Instant head bobbing.

Then for the melody, indeed keep it simple, repeat notes and use some percussive synths for your chords (you need to hammer it into people's heads). It's good to layer synths with a piano sometimes (piano's sound is familiar to everybody and adds some cliché).
Question/answer patterns works really well.

To find the chords, start by the highest notes which will lead the melody and try every damn note in the scale to find the perfect chords. (try perfect 7th).

Sometimes, you just need a chord per bar plus a higher note stacked above it to make the melody.

The doted 16th are cliché and help getting the melody syncoped with the drums to avoid sidechaining to much of the melody out.


I did all those things here.
https://soundcloud.com/mim-music/mim-ft-kazumi-evans-rarestepwip

I need to change those synths btw, I have an horrible phase correlation in the end.
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