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I can't figure out what instrument(s) are playing in these two parts of a track from Company of Heroes 2:

  1. https://youtu.be/_KSs73RISh0?t=5s
  2. https://youtu.be/_KSs73RISh0?t=2m58s

I'm thinking about the foreground theme that starts playing at these two points. My guess would be clarinet, oboe, or clarinet and oboe playing together. I really like this track and would love to know the answer. Thanks!

5

They're actually both trumpet!

The first one is just played a bit more on the quiet side, so sometimes it can sound a bit like a woodwind.

  • Thank you, @Richard! I thought it sounded a bit brassy, but an oboe can sound like that too, to my novice ears. I tried to combine oboe and clarinet in GarageBand and I thought it sounded a lot like what's in that track. Is there anything in particular I should listen for to tell these from a trumpet? – Tomasz P. Szynalski Nov 27 '17 at 8:43
  • The trumpet [sample in this case] has more 'spit' at the start, when the lips first start to vibrate. You can't 'spit' start either a clarinet or oboe, because of the reeds. You can a flute [though you wouldn't confuse a flute, of course] – Tetsujin Nov 27 '17 at 10:43
  • @Tetsujin Thanks, I'll keep that tip in mind, though I can't say I hear any irregularities -- the onsets of all notes seem really smooth to me. – Tomasz P. Szynalski Nov 27 '17 at 16:52
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    Quick test... put your lips together, then start to blow [you don't need to make any attempt to vibrate] The initial sound is always going to be a 'P' sound, however faint. If you have a reed between your lips, you can't make the 'P'. It's not a perfect analogy, but it will do as a quick explanation. – Tetsujin Nov 27 '17 at 16:59
  • @Tetsujin Good explanation! So you actually play the trumpet with closed lips. Who knew? I think this video shows the technique: youtu.be/cYPxs7RDe48?t=1m37s I still can't hear any P's in the samples, but maybe I'll get there in time. – Tomasz P. Szynalski Nov 27 '17 at 19:06

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