Skip to content
8 April 2019

Music For The Planet – Episode 8: Tipping Point

In Earth Means World To Us we have been called to see our unique home and the importance to defend and preserve it. We’ve also reflected on the neglect we’ve had so far on the health of our own Planet. Tipping Point wants to smash in our faces that this is not the time to speak anymore, this is just the time to act as one. We are so close to the final deadline. If we continue not to care about it, the scenario will have nothing to envy an apocalyptic movie.


So, we were speaking about time. From the very beginning, cellos, basses and percussions articulate a regular rhythm that wants to recall the ticking of a clock. In the second 18, a new element is added in the distance to the scene: an electric piano that plays a fixed note, on the levare of the regular rhythm. With 36 seconds to go, a celesta introduces the first theme until it reaches the minute 01.11 when the bass of the organ starts to give movement to the body of the composition. At minute 01.41 this musical environment is brutally invaded by a complex number of synthesized sounds that, like a wave, breaks onto the orchestra violently awakening the brass section and the percussions while, in the distance, the organ starts playing an ostinato on the high notes. At minute 01.59 a second wave, stronger than the first, crashes again on the orchestra and awakens the section of violas and second violins that intone in unison the main theme for the first time. Simultaneously, a rhythmic choir lights up in the background and the celli chase a continuously agitated triplet. An even stronger new wave crashes at minute 02.21 awakening also the first section of the violins that follows the main theme in unison with second violins and violas. As in a storm at sea, another synthesized wave crashes and from this moment on the section of the first violins detaches itself from the main theme proposing a variation in its first half twice. At minute 03.05, this section ends and the orchestra gets off to a good start, bringing the dynamics even lower than the beginning of the piece. Only a chorus of childish voices and the absence of the “orchestral clock” differentiates this part from the initial one. Meanwhile, the celesta timidly re-proposes the main theme gently. From the depths, at minute 03.30, the clock wakes up and from this moment on it begins a chase of hit and run on a variant of the main theme between celesta and electric piano. At 04.00, the organ starts to move the bass, the celesta continues the main theme and the section of the violins is added to the answers of the electric piano. 18 seconds later, the first section of the violins also joins, enriching the theme with the upper octave and gradually increasing the dynamics of the entire orchestra. At minute 04.35 a new storm cycle begins. This time the orchestra starts from the very beginning complete with an extra battery that marks the rhythmic steps. In this vortex, in the succession of the synthetic waves, the dynamics continue to grow and the voices of the various sections chase each other, harmonizing each other. The peak of this dynamic climax, perhaps the most powerful of the whole album, is reached at minute 05.28 and in the slow dynamic shutdown, one last wave sucks the orchestra down and produces a crash in which the piece dissolves.

Sound-stage: be small to become big

This was probably the most complicated composed track in terms of arranging voices and complexity of sound of all Music For The Planet. When I first started this composition, I had to deal with the question of how to get such a mass of sound into the mix. The answer I found was to work at very low dynamic volumes of the individual tracks. As in mathematics, reaching 100 is possible in different ways and if it is true that 50+50 is equal to 100, it is also true that 50 times 2 is still 100. This was the approach in the arrangement and mixing phase that allowed me to find space for each individual instrument while preserving the dynamics of the various voices. The final step then came thanks to the mastering section at the Fuseroom Recording Studio. Alberto Rizzo Schettino mastered all Music For The Planet and his wise hands made the difference in finalizing the sound, making it powerful, full-bodied and dynamically coherent, as it was intended.

Dive Into The Matter

Global climate change has already had observable effects on the environment. Glaciers have shrunk, ice on rivers and lakes is breaking up earlier, plant and animal ranges have shifted and trees are flowering sooner. Effects that scientists had predicted in the past would result from global climate change are now occurring: loss of sea ice, accelerated sea-level rise and longer, more intense heat waves. A landmark report from the world’s top climate change group said “rapid, far-reaching and unprecedented changes in all aspects of society” are required to ward off the worst impacts of global warming.

Some of the long-term effects in the future of global climate change are as follows:

  • The change will continue through this century and beyond
  • Temperatures will continue to rise
  • Frost-free season (and growing season) will lengthen
  • Changes in precipitation patterns
  • More droughts and heatwaves
  • Hurricanes will become stronger and more intense
  • Sea level will rise 1-4 feet by 2100
  • The Arctic likely to become ice-free

Take Action: IPCC

Created by the United Nations Environment Programme (UN Environment) and the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) in 1988 the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) is the United Nations body for assessing the science related to climate change. The IPCC was created to provide policymakers with regular scientific assessments on climate change, its implications and potential future risks, as well as to put forward adaptation and mitigation options. Through its assessments, the IPCC determines the state of knowledge on climate change. It identifies where there is an agreement in the scientific community on topics related to climate change, and where further research is needed. The reports are drafted and reviewed in several stages, thus guaranteeing objectivity and transparency.  The IPCC does not conduct its own research.

IPCC reports are neutral, policy-relevant but not policy-prescriptive.  The assessment reports are a key input into the international negotiations to tackle climate change.