The official art track video for Steven Conklin's "Is This Broken?", from the "Auditory Hallucinations" album.
"Is This Broken?" is from the fast lane on Steven's high octane musical super-highway. This one clocks in at 186 beats per minute for three minutes. There's quite a lot going on with this track so lets break it down:
Seven guitars (but not necessarily all playing at the same time) and one bass guitar - which doubles the fills in the “chorus” sections. Sounds far more complicated than it is. The song is structured like a standard rock song: intro – verse – chorus - verse - chorus – solo – chorus. The entire track is in the key of D minor. However, all the guitars are tuned down a half step (thus: D flat minor is the sounding pitch.) The bass is in drop D down a ½ step (Db, Ab, Db, Gb – low to high).
Now to the music:
the intro consists of three distorted electric guitars each playing a single note and making up an A major chord (A, C#, E). This acts as the V chord and resolves to D minor for the next section. Guitars four and five are distorted electrics playing the rhythm while guitars two and three are playing harmonized leads. Guitar three lays out during this part of the intro. The chord progression (overall) is D minor – Bb5 - A5 ( i – vi – v) Guitar six which is a 12 string acoustic enters for the walkdown part then lays out until the second verse section.
The first verse:
Guitars four and five continue playing the new rhythm figure of D5 – F5 – Bb5 – F5 while guitars one and two handle the melody. Guitar two supports guitar one by playing the last two lines an octave lower (first four bars) before playing a counter walkdown line (next four bars) before laying out. Now the rhythm part changes slightly: the progression becomes D5 – F – C . That repeats and guitar two re-enters doubling guitar one an octave lower in the last measure leading into the chorus.
The chorus sections:
These sections sound complex but are only guitars one and two playing a harmonized line for six measures. Measure seven acts as a bridge between two different melodies and the bass doubles guitar one. Guitars one and two play another six measure harmonized line which again, at measure seven the bass doubles guitar one and it leads to another “section bridge”.
The second verse – a variation of verse one:
The second verse brings in guitar seven. A clean electric ping-ponged between the left and right speakers for four measures then it's out totally. For the rhythm part guitars four and five play a D5 – F5 progression twice before guitar six re-enters to bring in a new progression of: Dm – Dsus2 – Dm – Bb – C | Dm – Dsus2 – A5 – Bb5 – F – E5
Which ends on a variation of the 1st verse part of D5 – F- C.
Over all that guitar one plays lines that ebb and flow based on D minor.
Then it all repeats again for the chorus section.
Guitar Solo section:
Only one guitar for the first half, then guitars one and two play a harmonized line. Guitars four and five handle the rhythm section which is a walkdown: C5 – Bb5 – A5 – (F5) G5
The third chorus:
Same run as the first two were except the last A5 is held longer for the free time ending.
A complete transcription to Is This Broken? can be purchased at www.sheetmusicplus.com (or by going to our merch section.)
Track: Is This Broken?
Album: Auditory Hallucinations
Run Time: 2:52
Track Producer: Steven Conklin
Keys: D Minor
Video Director: Steven Conklin
Copyright 2016 Steven Conklin (BMI)