10. Hamster Wheel
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Since childhood I’ve constantly contemplated the repetitive mundanity of everyday life. Sleeping, eating, washing, toileting, commuting etc., let alone the boredom of what most of us do to earn a living.
I’ve tried to convey a breathless non-stop feel to the music using both a ‘train-shuffle’ rhythm plus fast chord changes. The chord sequence is a ‘warm-up’ I’ve used for years although it never developed further. It was a great opportunity to apply it in a song.
For a long time, the song was missing ‘something’ to make it special. It finally took form with the addition of sound effects (pressure of modern life) and a ‘bubble gum’/’Banana Splits’ recurring synth riff that expands into the instrumental break.
I couldn’t reach UP vocally for third section and dropping to a comfortable pitch sounded quite weak. Pitch shifting up an octave sounded horrendously unnatural. So I transposed to the highest I could possibly sing ... the software then only needed to raise it a further 3 semitones ... not perfect but much better.