Up and running! Feb 17, 2011 11:10:43 GMT -5
Post by cassie on Feb 17, 2011 11:10:43 GMT -5
Cassie, my two favorites on the acoustic CD are Soaked and Aftermath. Stylistically they sound completely different, and yet-- aren't they both difficult to sing? I mean-- don't they use two completely different techniques to achieve their sound? In some ways Aftermath sounds more complex to me.
I feel clumsy trying to ask the question-- don't know if you will understand what I'm trying to say.
ETA: these are the two songs I am currently "hooked" on. I listen to them repeatedly.. for different reasons. Both pull my strings and pluck certain emotional pleasure chords... but again, different ones for each song.
Welcome, aloha. Glad you stopped by, and you were very clear with your question. I agree that Adam's style of singing differs between Aftermath and Soaked.
To me, there is a difference in the quality of the tone. Aftermath is more pop-ish, and Soaked is more legitimate theater, almost operatic. I hear Adam aiming or positioning the tone or sound towards different parts of his mouth and head. To review from a post on the old site, think of the sound as waves in the ocean coming to shore and entering a cave. (the cave being your mouth and head).
In Soaked, he uses large waves, and channels them into the cave in such a way that they heave up and bounce strongly against the walls at the front of the cave, then bounce back and forth there. Adam, when singing, "And you've had enough, searching for love" puts such power into the sound waves (but with NO strain) and focuses the tone into the mask, the front of his face and sinuses. There it just reverberates back and forth, producing this clear, ringing, strong sound.
In Aftermath, his tone is what I would call more "accessible." Meaning it is more like what we hear from pop singers. The sound waves coming into the cave are not as large or heavy. They spread out and bounce against the walls in the middle of the cave. Not as much "woosh" or smash, but a more gentle surge. The sound waves are focused more broadly toward the middle of the palate, where they still get resonance from the head and sinuses, but not as sharply. (Don't know if I am making any sense here at all.)
In Aftermath, when he goes for the high notes in the first half of the song, he shifts into this light, ethereal head voice. He doesn't use his chest resonance which darkens and powers the tone. In Soaked, in contrast, he uses both the head and chest resonance throughout the song, resulting in a much more powerful, richer, "legitimate" sound. The only time he shifts into total head voice is the last notes before the long pause -- "new." There, he throws this tidal wave of sound aimed spot on into his mask, the front of his face and it seems to echo and resonate and produce countless harmonics.
When Adam wants power and emphasis in Aftermath on the high notes towards the end, he uses a different technique. He pushes his chest voice resonance up into the high notes and adds a little "squeeze" or tightness to his vocal chords to produce the slightest bit of gravel which sounds very rock. It gives it that celebratory punch.
Other differences I hear between the songs are the long, extended or legato phrases in Soaked which require tremendous breath control, whereas Aftermath is more bouncy with shorter phrases. Soaked moves smoothly up and down the melody; Aftermath does these wicked jumps from low to high, requiring him to shift rapidly from chest voice resonance to head voice lightenss.
Soaked has "less words." He stretches out the vowels in the words until the last mili-second, before adding the final consonant. Aftermath has lots of words, sung fast, and the challenge is to articulate them clearly with that bounce but without punching the consonants and losing the melodic line.
Of course that makes it all sound very complicated ---- and it is. But, to the listener, it is simply a very pleasing, touching performance. We may note that the voice sounds different in the two songs, but that both are pleasing in their own way, and seem to fit the spirit and emotion of the song. With the amount of technical expertise and experience Adam has, I doubt that he breaks down his production and analyzes it like I have. He just sings it in the way he hears and feels it, and his body knows what to do. He would probably chuckle to read me dissecting it as I have.
But, since you asked about the differences, that is what I am hearing.