Directly or indirectly, there is a good chance Chris Morris has impacted your life. From video games to commercials, his instrumentals have been integral segues to fill that empty void of label to consumer. Acting for the scene and just a few large words on the screen might not do the job. That’s where Chris translates the mood and the effect to something more. His new album Calibration, is a collection of such instrumentals.
Using hip-hop beats with lo-fi sound and elements of soul, jazz, R&B and pop-Chris transforms empty space. Many a times, that is what he is hired for, so he better do a good job. Take his first track for example. There is No Tomorrow might be a somber title, but inside lays a joyful package. Choosing the right patch on the keys and a relaxed beat, Chris creates a complex web that sounds very simple as a whole.
Stroll Outside has a quick, walkable beat that very well aligns with the intention. The song bears that within the DNA of the beat, with the beat probably dictating your pace. The other instruments dance around effortlessly around this, while generous pauses make for a space for imbibing the energy. Sneak Peek might very well be a song used during these unboxing videos. With the secret of making it a playful, wholesome track, Chris makes us realize something very plain.
The power of segue
These videos that use Chris’ music might be absolute trash without this ambient sound. Many elements of suspense or factual display require space where a narrative doesn’t take over. This is where Chris Morris shines. His track Amusement Park Hangover encourages sounds and bites of symphony that allude to what he is doing. He is good at it, and the titles definitely make sense after a listen.
10 Years in Los Angeles. Now we know that this is the place of dreams & destruction. The place enjoys a dynamic many cities in the US have, and Chris makes a sonic daze of sorts with this sound. It combines a lot of his talents, segueing between effects and palettes of sound that make it an exciting track.
Lost in Reverse has an emotional premise, with a lot of the sound having the future of it making a prelude. Makes for a special sound and of course Chris makes it interesting. The hip-hop beat makes this an exciting track for a good heist style TV series in my head. Binge? Yes please.
Embracing the reggae sound with Somebody, Chris fuses his own signature sound styles that make for a hybrid creation. Many of these tracks are complete versions of themselves without vocals, and that’s the sound composition that is doing the trick.
Exploring by sound bytes
Chill hip-hop? Always. Don’t Believe in Worries makes sure this major scale track really explores the soundboard. The layering is absolutely essential, the choice of notes is what makes this interesting to hear as improvisation seems to take control. Go Down uses some arpeggio intro, popular from the 00’s DJ tracks to make a great layered song. Chris Morris is a master of keys and production, each sound gets a priority that helps the track shine like no other on the playlist.
Cold Ice once again combines the melees of R&B and hip-hop with pop sounds. It’s Chris’s masterful composition skills that make each piece different on the basis of styles experimented with. Many of these will take place in some video across the internet and we might forget to tip our hats to the composer. Take a moment to appreciate what this man is creating here.
With a retro ABBA like sound, Precious Time combines with the sounds of lo-fi to create something different. Chris recommends we listen to his music when we’re going about our daily lives, but I recommend you pay attention. He has done some really good work with the layers that take a lot of time to clean up. For his third album in close to 10 years, he seems to have put his best foot forward. Some say he’s still calibrating for the best.
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