The building blocks of composition 105 Figure 5.1. oddnotes.lso Listen to this group of notes. Not very memorable, is it? · Now load blocks/igetit (Figure 5.2). Figure 5.2. igetit.lso It's the same order of notes, but what a transformation. It's instantly recognizable as Eine Kleine Nacht Musik by Mozart, an absolute master of melody. What brought about the transformation? The rhythm. Without a rhythmic shape, the melody does not exist. What else? A distinctive shape, brought about by the pitch of the notes as a melody unfolds. A string of adjacent notes soon becomes monotonous without a leap ­ large or small, up or down ­ of some kind. Take another look at the first few phrases of Exile (exile/exile). Now this is a gentle melody, nothing very dramatic, which gradually climbs a scale. To make it a little more interesting, there is a leap of a fourth between the first two notes (A and D). Each time the melody climbs a step, there is a return to the A before leaping back up again and continuing the ascent. High climax points within the melodic shape are also important for emotional intensity. In this case the highest note arrives at the beginning of each chorus (high E ­ marked green). Low notes can have the opposite effect and are often used to calm things down. The English horn