Off The Beaten Path

Starting point

When I came up with the idea for “Túra” I was just returning from a vacation in Bohemia and still enamored with the fantastic landscapes, trees, rivers, mountains and the slavic culture. My original title was “Tundra” but as it would limit the musical “universe” I was creating to much into a climate zone – so I changed it to the czech word “Túra” as I am of Slavic origin myself. My grandparents were sorbs and silesians. And especially my grandpa who still loves nature so much and even at his old age, has not stopped to go out on a hike once in a while. So I thought it was a nice way to pay tribute to it.


As a freelance composer and sound designer, I am always working on paid assignments and it needs planning to balance your “regular work” with free projects that you create on your own, naturally. It also requires financial planning of what you’re doing, especially when instrumentalists are involved.

String-instrumentalist, composer and teacher Maria Grigoryeva whom I had already been working with on other assignments in the past was very interested to work together with me.

I wanted the track list very simple and basically just one word, hinting at a thematic landscape while still remaining somewhat nebulous. So after a while of looking up stories, places and species of plants and animals, Slavic and Nordic words, I would slowly puzzle together a little collage with enough inspiration to get working on the actual pieces.

“Túra” (2021) promo trailer


“Nydala” is the Swedish word for “new valley” – something that I have always been fascinated with is how thousands of years ago, humans have roamed the land, climbed mountains, settled down, built settlements, decided to go further and explore more places to live and settle. Nowadays, we hike for fun. We travel alone or in a group and if you’re a fast walker, you just move ahead and wait for the rest on top of the mountain or at the end of your trail. Back then, exploring these places was a live or die situation. You could slip and fall, break your leg. You would get left behind. The contrast between the enjoyment of a simple hike – and the hardship of splitting up, moving on to another place is what I wanted to capture in that little melody that plays throughout the track.

In “Pisik” I tried to visualize Inuit traveling through a snowstorm. The word roughly translates to “I don’t know” and it was my idea to create a sense of restlessness, as well as the feeling of being lost in an icy storm somewhere in the middle of nowhere.

“Reflection” is one of a many piano pieces which I wrote in one session. One of my techniques is that I just start playing what comes into my mind. I play a few bars and record it, then stop. Play something new, compare it to the previous few bars, record it, stop again and move to the next few bars. Always a little different, always a new chord, a new thought, a new emotion. It keeps the composition fresh and interesting, I think.

Usually I start out by just writing just for piano. But at some point you start experimenting with effects and synths and start to realize that it would really work well if there was either an orchestral and a synthetic variable in this and that it would be interesting to create little sound spheres and textures as well. Something large and cinematic, yet minimal enough to not be overbearing. Something mysterious and captivating, obviously, since it would be nice to engage listeners and keep them coming back.


A great tool during the production of these soundscapes was a sample library, called “Trails”. This KONTAKT-library allows me to easily sculpt an atmospheric sound with a vector-based interface and add effects and movements to it through programmable settings. It was very inspiring to use and to just add that final “dab of sauce” to the overall track. I also found the name “Trails” very fitting to the musical world I was working on. You can check out “Trails” on Lootaudio and Plugin Boutique here.

The Tracks I used it: Cove, Pisik, Euxoa and Volná

Trails Interface
The interface of "Trails" - a KONTAKT plugin for cinematic soundscapes


The album is out on most streaming services, like Spotify, Amazon, Apple Music and Youtube Music. Distrokid offers me a great variety of options. There is a great chance you will be able to select it as a background track on Tik Tok and Twitch as well, and many other currently available music services. You can go and check my Túra hyperfollow page to check all the possible streaming providers.

Alternative Cover Art

I worked with Niels, background-artist and animator of Brontomus on the first idea for the cover design. It turned out pretty great and I loved the colors and visualization of the idea I pitched to them. However, ultimately I felt that it was not quite fitting enough with the style and atmosphere of the music.

The artwork provided by Brontomus was a good pointer into the right direction that led me to creating the final artwork. Sometimes you have to make several iterations of the same idea just to get closer to the result you are looking for. In that regard, Brontomus had been a great collaborator and source of inspiration.

The final cover art features black and white photography of a mountain, northern lights, splashes of pink and green and a semi-blurred title in a serif font.

"Túra" Album Cover Artwork by Brontomus
Final Artwork