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A Cave Of Stars



 Genre: Alternative Rock

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If you're keeping up with the story (see my home page and blurb on my previous song 'From Sea To Sky', if not) our 'round the world trip took us through the US, into Canada, back into the US, across to Hawaii, and then down to New Zealand.

This song was inspired by one of those events that only seem happen when you travel; somewhere in North Island of New Zealand we pulled off the road to grab a bite to eat, and saw signs to some 'glow-worm' caves. Having never seen glow-worms before (they're not very common in Yorkshire, after all) we had to take a look, so we paid our ten dollars and were led - by lovely man named George - into a small, damp cave. It turned out to be a truly magical experience as George switched off his torch and left us in total darkness, looking upwards at a million star-like glow-worms shining like - well - a cave of stars.

So this song is about the unexpected in life, but it's also my paean to New Zealand (Aotearoa/Shadowland) - a magical country of mountains, rivers and the bluest lakes, of amazing landscapes and fantastic legends. If you've never been I highly recommend it :-))

The Song
This was meant to be a laid back acoustic strum-along, not a dance anthem! I'd been messing about with that old America song 'Horse With No Name' (shamelessly ripping off the chord progression), but couldn't find a GarageBand loop that had the rhythm I wanted. So, after much head scratching I tried some of the dance beats, and from there the song took on a whole new dimension as I added some synths and came up with a fat, chunky bass line that I love. Not what I was aiming for but satisfying all the same!

p.s It's quite a long track but your patience is rewarded with the Rick Wakeman 'prog-out' at the end :-))

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A Cave Of Stars
(by Phil Dolby ©2007)

So many roads left untravelled
So many nights have been slept away
So many dreams remain unfulfilled
So many days
How many souls will no gather
To see the start of a breaking day
To feel the heat of the shifting sun
And shadows play
We were not looking for a cave of stars
No Universes or Galaxies
Deep underground where the rain cuts scars
And icy water will hide the light and me
So farewell Aotearoa
And goodbye to this Shadowland
To the stories you told us
Of the gods who carved out by hand
Every river and valley
Every mountain of this domain
And the ice that will melt and fill
The bluest lake
(repeat chorus)
Song Stats
Hits: 3382
Comments: 15
Fans: 8
Plays: 93
Downloads: 139
Votes: 3
Uploaded: Jul 14, 2007 - 02:43:03 PM
Last Updated: Sep 21, 2007 - 07:15:53 AM Last Played: Jul 08, 2019 - 07:53:13 PM
Song License
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Hohner accoustic guitar
cjhoose said 4386 days ago (July 14th, 2007)
beautiful textures
I don't much like the 80s-sounding synth that appears near the beginning and periodically throughout the song. the beat does need some... eh... tweaking. parts of it are too loud and it doesnt "flow" at times (what a thing to say about beat huh?)

Your vocals are great, as are the lyrics!

I'd recommend asking biba_nova for remixes/advice...

for *lead* female vocals, ask Arin or onesweetworld to give it a shot... some of the prettiest voices around! fairymagic17 and SlimGirlFat are great with harmonies.
Check out my latest song called Vapor
dolby said 4384 days ago (July 16th, 2007)
Cheers CJ...
...I LOVE that 80's sounding synth! I was looking for a synth that sounded very - well - synthy, and eventually used this one which is 'Arena Run'. I think I quite like the cheesiness of it:-))

I'm not entirely sure what I *don't* like about the mix (if that makes any sense?). I think it flows Ok, but maybe sounds a bit crude in places e.g. the rattly snare drum that leads into the chorus? In my mind I want it to sound like Madonna when she was produced by William Orbit (similar sort of mood, atmosphere etc), and hence why I would like to hear a female vox.

Really appreciate you dropping a few potential names, I will check them out and get in touch. Thanks again, Phil

Same Same, But Different
Check out my latest song called The Only Ghost Who Cares
Mystified said 4386 days ago (July 14th, 2007)
Nice prog feel to this track...
CJ's recommendations are good (I'd already downloaded and started working on the track before she posted here). See my reply to your forum post.

I might also suggest that Alimar would be fabulous to contact re: a remix, if he has time and interest.
Prog is one of his specialties!

Really nice track. I like how it flows, and the synths don't bother me, because of the prog nature of the track, I suppose.
I had fun improvising to it :)

Check out my latest song called Elevated--Miss Chaos/Mystified vox
dolby said 4384 days ago (July 16th, 2007)
...for the comments.

I've just had a quick listen to some of your stuff (will go back and spend some more time there soon) and am intrigued how your voice might sound on this song.

I will drop you a 'note' with contact details. Many thanks for getting in touch


Same Same, But Different
Check out my latest song called The Only Ghost Who Cares
Dragonas said 4386 days ago (July 14th, 2007)
Cool tune
Your voice goes well with the song.
The song does have a bit of a New Zealand or Australian vibe for some reason, even without knowing the inspiration for the tune. (maybe the tempo or chord progression?).
Also, there is something about the way the guitar sounds in the chorus section that sounds too lo-fi.
I would try the chorus section guitar part on an acoustic guitar, instead of electric because it sounds too fuzzy (distorted). This would give it a more updated sound.
The tune gives me a 90's alt-vibe during the chorus. (If that is what you are aiming for, then please disregard my previous suggestion).
Finally, the vocals should be projected more (loudly) in the chorus to give it some dynamic from the verses. (to make it more anthemic sounding)
By the way, love the "prog-out" synth at the end.

Check out my latest song called Dragonian - Part I (1 of 6)
dolby said 4384 days ago (July 16th, 2007)
And again....
...thanks for taking the time to really listen to the track.

I aggree that there is definitely some NZ or Aussie vibe about this. I suppose you can't help but be influenced by your surroundings when you're in amongst it. I'm glad the atmosphere comes accross.

The distorted guitar in the chorus is my complete inability to reject the influence of Neil Young in almost all my songs. I would like to try a more accoustic guitar in these parts, but so far heven't been able to get a decent recording of my accoustic - so hence the fuzz. I'll keep trying:-))

Glad you like the prog-out at the end - too many YES albums as a kid. Cheers, Phil

Same Same, But Different
Check out my latest song called The Only Ghost Who Cares
echoroom said 4385 days ago (July 15th, 2007)
My god ... its full of stars
Hey Phil - real change from the previous work you've posted, and a nice groove to this. I agree with CJ about the synth, it isn't a great sound. Your vocal is great, really like how you nail the low notes, but yeah, I could hear female vox in the chorus.

The beats used sound OK to me, tho' the volume does vary throughout. The mix needs a bit of work in terms of clarity and levels, but nothing major. I'd offer to get involved in this, but you'd be waiting months, and I'[m not great on mixing. Great track, will be aces when it gets a bit of polish.

Check out my latest song called Light Sleeper
dolby said 4384 days ago (July 16th, 2007)
Nice one
Appreciate the comments again Steve.

Yes this is a total change - and really is a one off! I can see my synth choice causing a few ructions - but I'm sticking to my guns!

You've hit the nail on the head with regard to the drums though. Like I mentioned in the reply to CJ, I really want the space/dynamics/atmosphere that someone like William Orbit can create. Mind you he's probaly got a bit more gear than me and a decent microphone:-))

If you listen closely in the chorus's there are some female vocals - but it's just my voice through that vocal transformer effect - hence why I need a real person.

Ta again

Same Same, But Different
Check out my latest song called The Only Ghost Who Cares
Scott Carmichael said 4384 days ago (July 16th, 2007)
excellent trax
textured and lush... you employ several elements to move this along... and it flows... It really doesn't come across as a dance anthem.. it's more of a journey... you keep it interesting through out with all the different instruments/elements fading in and out...

very good and compelling.. intersesting the sense of urgency that this invokes
Check out my latest song called He Has Passed this Way
dolby said 4384 days ago (July 16th, 2007)
Cheers Scott
Been listening to a fair bit of your stuff recently Scott, so glad you could drop by.

I like to musical journey idea (again too many YES albums!), I suppose that can happen in a long track like this. Like others have mentioned I think it's jsut some minor changes in dynamics rather than song structure, and this could begin to sound quite polished.

Glad you enjoyed the track.

Same Same, But Different
Check out my latest song called The Only Ghost Who Cares
Scott Carmichael said 4384 days ago (July 16th, 2007)
There is no such thing as "too many Yes albums" I'm almost certain...
Check out my latest song called He Has Passed this Way
dolby said 4384 days ago (July 16th, 2007)

Same Same, But Different
Check out my latest song called The Only Ghost Who Cares
ktb said 4376 days ago (July 24th, 2007)
dance em up
what a groovy track. I love the synth work, progression and most of all your voice. The end rocks.
Check out my latest song called Blackwater (by Tokai)
Moviz said 4361 days ago (August 8th, 2007)
I love this
arrangement as it is. The sounds you've created are great along with the subject, M
Check out my latest song called We'll Meet Again
Heightened said 4252 days ago (November 26th, 2007)
A Cave of Stars
Agree with cjhoose on the synth at the beginning or should I say loop. Just been used so many times before. Still good solid song though.
Check out my latest song called Caldari
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Name: Phil Dolby
Location: Basel Switzerland
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The terms alternative rock and alternative music[1] were coined in the early 1980s to describe punk rock-inspired music genres which didn't fit into the mainstream genres of the time. At times it was used as catch-all phrase for rock music from under

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