This week we’re going to look at a rhythmic concept. I was listening to Laura Marling’s new record “A Creature I Don’t Know”. It’s really a wonderful record. This figure really popped out to me from the song “The Muse”. In Bar 13 she uses a really cool riff with a time signature change to return to the begging of the progression.
We’ll notice that the song is in 4/4. And is centered around an Amaj to Amin6 vamp until the min V chord in bar 11. Bar 13 we see a bar of 3/4 for 2 bars. Then bar of 5/4 in bar 15 and one last bar of 3/4 in bar 16. It really feels like a lot of 3/4 until the quarter notes on beats 4 and 5 in bar 15. They’re really like punctuations. Perhaps even exclamation marks creating some closer before the last bar which returns to the top.
I find it not only refreshing on the ears but it also builds tension to return to the original progression. This Concept works really well in a song that doesn’t really have a bridge. Where the theme stays the same but needs little shock waves to keep it interesting. It’s very effective in this song. Perhaps you have a one chord cycle song that you can spice up with a rhythmic twist.