Touching Tongues: out of key lick??

This is the forum for all Steve Vai-related discussion including Steve's albums, videos, performances and frequently asked questions.
Message
Author
Luc
Member
Member
Posts: 37
Joined: Sat Jul 17, 2004 4:48 am
Location: The Netherlands
Contact:

Touching Tongues: out of key lick??

#1 Post by Luc » Sun Jul 24, 2005 3:14 am

Hey,

I actually noticed this several years ago, but I forgot about it untill I heard Touching Tongues again the other day. At 1:50 in the song there's this lick that's completely out of key. It really makes my ears hurt. I was just wondering if it's just me or did more people notice this? It may have been done on purpose but I can hardly believe that. I mean, it sounds REALLY bad. But then again it's also hard to believe that Steve thinks it sounds good...

Opinions?

stu_hig
Member
Member
Posts: 645
Joined: Sat Oct 16, 2004 9:15 am
Location: Northern Ireland, United Kingdom

#2 Post by stu_hig » Sun Jul 24, 2005 3:47 am

I think it sounds pretty good. You hear this sort of thing a lot in Steve's music.

User avatar
Yorksha_Pud
Member
Member
Posts: 188
Joined: Wed Dec 15, 2004 2:11 pm
Location: London, England

#3 Post by Yorksha_Pud » Sun Jul 24, 2005 3:49 am

IMO, I dont think it sounds bad at all! Sounds pretty kool actually! :D :peace

Luc
Member
Member
Posts: 37
Joined: Sat Jul 17, 2004 4:48 am
Location: The Netherlands
Contact:

#4 Post by Luc » Sun Jul 24, 2005 4:31 am

So you guys think it was done on purpose then? 'cause from a theoretical point of view it doesn't make sense imo... Not that it should, but to me it just doesn't sound right. I would really like to hear Steve's take on this.

User avatar
Naffis-kun
Member
Member
Posts: 535
Joined: Fri Jun 25, 2004 6:40 am
Contact:

#5 Post by Naffis-kun » Sun Jul 24, 2005 4:43 am

Yeah.. I know.. but music and more importantly ART is NOT about playing with rules and stuff.
It has never bothered me in any way. I'm not really into theoretical aspects of music.

anuj
Member
Member
Posts: 571
Joined: Fri Apr 11, 2003 12:03 am
Location: san jose, ca, us
Contact:

#6 Post by anuj » Sun Jul 24, 2005 4:47 am

haha, that riff was definitely on purpose, i guarantee it.

it makes perfect sense to me. i have no words to describe why it does, but it's almost like taking a sharp breath between words.

~A

Gabriel Perat
Member
Member
Posts: 237
Joined: Fri Oct 22, 2004 8:17 pm
Location: Viña Del Mar, Chile

#7 Post by Gabriel Perat » Sun Jul 24, 2005 6:28 am

Luc wrote:So you guys think it was done on purpose then? 'cause from a theoretical point of view it doesn't make sense imo... Not that it should, but to me it just doesn't sound right. I would really like to hear Steve's take on this.
I've Just read these and got to listen to the part. you're right ;) it is out of key but maybe Steve wanted to do that :)

Luc
Member
Member
Posts: 37
Joined: Sat Jul 17, 2004 4:48 am
Location: The Netherlands
Contact:

#8 Post by Luc » Sun Jul 24, 2005 6:37 am

Gabriel Perat wrote:I've Just read these and got to listen to the part. you're right ;) it is out of key but maybe Steve wanted to do that :)
I guess he did. But I can't listen to the song because of that lick.

User avatar
Naffis-kun
Member
Member
Posts: 535
Joined: Fri Jun 25, 2004 6:40 am
Contact:

#9 Post by Naffis-kun » Sun Jul 24, 2005 7:25 am

You damn geniuses :(.
I still don't hear anything wrong in that part.

stu_hig
Member
Member
Posts: 645
Joined: Sat Oct 16, 2004 9:15 am
Location: Northern Ireland, United Kingdom

#10 Post by stu_hig » Sun Jul 24, 2005 7:41 am

Naffis-kun wrote:You damn geniuses :(.
I still don't hear anything wrong in that part.
There isn't anything wrong in it! Luc, keep listening to it and it start to make sence. There is a similar type of lick in the solo of Whispering a Prayer I think.

User avatar
Big Bad Bill
Member
Member
Posts: 4071
Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2003 12:40 am
Location: Honley UK

#11 Post by Big Bad Bill » Sun Jul 24, 2005 7:42 am

I think it's the best part of the song!! I remember going to a guitar teacher when that CD came out, and playing him that section and asking him to teach me to be able to do that kind of thing. I think he came up with some similar types of lick. I'll have a look at my notes!

I think it sounds good because it leads the ear away from the scale using chromatics slides in the sweep arpeggios into dissonant territory and then resolves it in the strongest possible way by going back to that B (key signature is F# I think). It's unexpected, nondiatonic and so sounds oddly cool!

We need a real expert to explain this.......Bakerman?



Prezidentman
Member
Member
Posts: 733
Joined: Thu Jan 27, 2005 12:33 pm
Location: London, UK

#12 Post by Prezidentman » Sun Jul 24, 2005 8:23 am

Like the pick scrape at 2:09. I thik it's just another one of those things that are a part of steve's musical intelligence..it's that damn creative thinking that these virtuosos possess :) ...going for something less ordinary, but something that will work with the song...I think it's perfect for creating the tension needed for that particular section..it's odd, yet so correct.
In other words...definitely on purpose...no doubt about it.

And btw, isn't this song just too good to not be included in the setlist :?:

Luc
Member
Member
Posts: 37
Joined: Sat Jul 17, 2004 4:48 am
Location: The Netherlands
Contact:

#13 Post by Luc » Sun Jul 24, 2005 9:41 am

Hmm... I still don't know, despite everything that's being said here. It just doesn't seem to fit in the song. I just can't get used to it. Well either you like it or you don't I guess.

Gary2005
Member
Member
Posts: 258
Joined: Sat Nov 13, 2004 7:16 am
Location: scotland

#14 Post by Gary2005 » Sun Jul 24, 2005 10:18 am

It IS in key, not being in key is different than a few random notes that may not be in a certain scale that works well with the relative key. It sounds more like he's just used a different scale that is still in key with the song, but has a few notes that arent in any kind of harmony.

Vegas_Blues
Member
Member
Posts: 292
Joined: Fri Aug 22, 2003 1:59 am
Location: Las Vegas, NV
Contact:

#15 Post by Vegas_Blues » Sun Jul 24, 2005 10:30 am

What he did, was used a substitution, which is really common in jazz music......
Basically, he switched keys for a few seconds of that lick, and it makes perfect sense, and Steve is known to do this a LOT.....that lick is a technical masterpiece, and it blows my mind everytime I hear it and play it.

Check out Fever Dream from the Ultra Zone, Still My Bleeding Heart (S&R) for more "out of key" notes. (And yes....Whispering a Prayer does the same thing in the fast legato section)

Post Reply