All 12 audio Reviews

Last Era, Evening Stroll Last Era, Evening Stroll

Rated 4 / 5 stars

Even though nobody asked for it, I felt like dropping by and saying some choice words here, so here we go:

Immediately after listening to this, I want to ask a question: Why doesn't it loop? :( It literally starts and ends with almost the same part, so I don't see why not. But meh, it's a nitpick, it'd just have worked so well.
I feel like the lead instruments are given too much leeway in the mix, without actually having the space to do that. The first lead instrument, the steel drumish thing is a perfect example, but it also applies a little to the piano also, and the synth at 3:35ish is which caused me to question this. :(
Conversely, I feel the bass should have more space in the mix. The bassline is nice, it should be audible :(
The piece doesn't evolve. :| Lucky we have solid melodies and drum programming to make up to that.

The drums (kick, snare, hats) are also far back in the mix, but on the other hand, it gives them a background-ish feeling. Still feels like they should have a little bit more breath room.
The choice of the soundfont with the synths give it the feel of an old RPG. I can't say that it's bad though.

The melodies. Even though the piece doesn't evolve in itself much (if at all), the melodies do a lot of work to keep the interest up. :)
The drum sounds are from the soundfont, so not so much to say about that, but the drum fills and variations are very well done. :) Not humanized too well, mind you, but considering the RPGish GM sound, it doesn't really hurt the piece.
The synths sound great :)
It has a nice feel to it. Not the same feel as a live band performing with a lot of soul in it, but more like a how a great game soundtrack does things.

In short, it is a nice listen. The mixing has its shortcomings, but it's not that everything isn't audible, it's more not everything being in their place. A stationary piece chord progression-wise, but the melodies do their best to try and vary it up. Its merits help overlook a lot of teeny-tiny negatives I propably didn't even notice.

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Darknessbreaker responds:

Hey, thanks for dropping by and leaving the kind of review i love to read :)

Well... the loop thing just didn't come to my mind i guess, although it may sound really great. I wanted it to end how it started so i really couldve just looped this one :)
I guess i made some mistakes here and there when i decided how loud the components of the song should be. I did it with my earphones and the bass sounded great that way but without my earphones, it sounds pretty far away so i guess i just should've done that without my earphones oO. I should really re-balance this without earphones, i guess. For the drums, i am not too sure though. Gotta experiment with them a bit.
We first decided to do most of it in the FluidR3_GM Soundfont but then i tried jclive. I think, jclive really gives the feel of a nice old RPG thing which i personally really like.

Oh yeah the melodies. Especially the piano is what stays in my head for sooo long. It's so catchy to me :)
For the drums, I thought it wouldnt be enough to just have one drum cycle throughout the entire song, so i added another one (after expermenting a bit in another song of mine last year). I think it adds much altho it is, as you said, not really humanized.
The synths really are awesome. Probs to K-Pone (if i am not mistaken, he made the ZynAddSubFX-synths). ^^

Thank you once again for saying your thoughts on this one. It really, really helps me out. I'll try to fix some problems this week and try not to do the same mistakes in my next songs. :)

Memory of Life [Remix] Memory of Life [Remix]

Rated 4 / 5 stars

First and foremost: This is awfully quiet. It's an inconvenience to the listener, and no, it doesn't pass as "dynamics" in this case :( Not that big a deal if one can afford to triple that volume, i.e. nothing is going on in the background, or one's just focusing on listening to this track, but it's bad otherwise.

You replaced the echo-effect in the original track with a reverb. It's not a bad choice really. GBA didn't really have a reverb-effect, which is what I believe Shogo Sakai would have gone for is there was one.

Captures the feeling really nicely. Not much to gripe about really :)

Overall, there's not much to say about this honestly. It's a well crafted piano remix about a great track. It's fine sound-wise, but to hear this, one has to triple the volume, which is an inconvenience. Just a quick amplification in Audacity or something would do wonders.

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NyxTheShield responds:

Thanks!! I think you are right, i mixed this with my Ipod earbuds (My Sennheisers died :c), so i had t mix them at low volumes. Thanks ^^

Assuage Assuage

Rated 3.5 / 5 stars

Very ear-piercing loud hats. Reducing their volume wouldn't go amiss. :(
You almost have a loop here. You could easily make it so, since the ending is LAZY! :(

The drums stay in the same basic rhythm, but the odd groove makes up for it the first times, and you vary it up sufficiently. :|
I'd say you could do humanization, as in vary up the volume of each other hi-hat hit. :|
The song doesn't go anywhere, but you vary it up just enough to make it work in my opinion. :|
Not exactly memorable, but then again, not everything has to be. Some songs exist just for the pure feel of it. Does this song have that? I'd say it does, barely.

The synths sound psychotic at times, which is nice. :)
Odd unusual groove, which I like. :)
Has a sound/style, which could make it use for a flash-game or sth. Has texture of its own. :)

Overall, not a bad song, but it's pretty forgettable. The biggest issue is the sheer volume with the hi-hats. If you fixed that and made it a loop, it would make a big difference. There is originality in this song, though there are elements you overuse just a little bit overall.

cheezz responds:

Thanks, I always appreciate some constructive criticism. I agree with you about the hi hats, but unfortunately I can't change it now, having misplaced a considerable amount of the work :/

Toybox Groove (v2) Toybox Groove (v2)

Rated 2.5 / 5 stars

Alright, here's what came to my mind while listening:

I honestly think this would be better as a loop. :(
I honestly think the clap should be replaced by a snare (except in the parts where the clap's high-pitched). :(
I honestly feel the track doesn't have a lot of "substance" to it. It feels empty. I think any kind of a bass could go a long way to bringing this to life. :(
I honestly feel the track is very simple. :(
I honestly feel it lacks structure. All it basically has the intro, A-part varied up, bridge and the outro, which is basically the intro. :(

I think the instruments feel just a bit lifeless and cheap-sounding. You could do a bit of humanization and replacing, or you could stylize it as a SNES-ish video game soundtrack. :|

I like how quirky it is. It has a happy melody, and the pitch-shifts give it a positively insane feel. :)
I like the groove and the way you did the percussion (although I still think the percussion-sounds aren't amazing by theirself) :)

Overall, it's not ear-piercing or terrible to listen to, but it's not exactly very memorable or particularly great either. You have working melodies there, but the song only has like 3 parts excluding the bridge. It's quirky, and you have a nice insane feel to this, but it sounds like a mediocre SNES-soundtrack that doesn't loop.
If this was anything like your first song, I think that's pretty nice for what it is. However, if we bring it out of context, there's a lot to improve.

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The Glimpse The Glimpse

Rated 4 / 5 stars

Hi there :)
I'm quite rusted in reviews. D: So I'll try the easiest method of (quite literally) spilling my thoughts here and cherry-picking.

The first thought from me was "This should play in some big open gothic space, like a big church (or something similar) at night." The second thought was that the reverb is huge, if not over the top.
The track itself is pretty chill, with some melodies that should be used in an orchestral epic battle theme or a farewell/credits track - I mean, seriously, when I began thinking how this affected my mood, "epic" was the first word that popped to mind, and "credits" was the second. Odd, since this isn't actually adrenaline-filled or that kind of moody. I also like the drums, though I'll point out that it takes the other blow from the reverb (still, not hating). I like how you pulled off making this slow track not boring. I could imagine this continuing for another pair of minutes from where you ended. I don't like the ending, to me it sounds like a transition that doesn't lead anywhere, and the reverb after the "actual song" lasts seconds. That's the other big negative from the reverb.
There's some good in that reverb, that being the open space feeling it gives, although I still think It has too much decay/tail/whatever.

Cherries from that train of thought: Nice chill spacey track with nice drums and melodies, but too much or too long reverb. (But that's just my thoughts™, so take with a grain of salt)

Blacklawn responds:

Thanks. The reverb was intentional to convey the feeling I meant for the song, especially for the drums. Personally, I think it would have been too dull with less reverb. If more people complain, I'll change it.

In the Hideout In the Hideout

Rated 4.5 / 5 stars

Interesting. Sound spacey, a little in style of Ratchet&Clank 1/David Bergeaud. Tempo changes are smooth, the lo-fi drums make it even more R&C'ish, and the feel is a bit of "Agent silently breaking in a casino" -type. Although the chord progression never changes a lot, it manages to sound interesting all the way through. Only thing I don't particularly like is the end. The (second part of the) harpsichordish sound at ~20 seconds before the end doesn't sound comfortable, and the song ending after that sounds a bit abrupt IMO. Still doesn't diminish the feel, but I feel it could work as a loop without an ending rather than a song with one.

I'm not sure if that scout button still effects anyone by me, but clicked it anyway. :p

Shadowfall001 responds:

After I got a little ways into this one, I did briefly consider making it a loop, so I definitely understand what you're saying. And yeah, the patch that comes in at the 20 second mark does have a few odd overtones, though in a way that's kind of what drew me to it. :) Glad you liked the track and thank you very much for the scout.

Farewell To Color Farewell To Color

Rated 4 / 5 stars

Let's be honest here, if you had excluded the "progress of losing the color", a.k.a the very happy and colorful intro from the song, you would have struck right to the theme. In other words, the part from 1:01 alone would have been a more fitting submission to the contest. But eh, too late for that :/. There's still 2 challenges left in the contest.

I'm not an expert at mastering (in general anyway), so I don't know. The piano somehow bothers me a little, but no idea why :/. The first third of the song is catchy, and the later part sounds also very good, sad, and it doesn't exhibit any color. It's almost like a funeral, with all the gray people :o.
Not looking from the contest perspective, 4/5, because the two parts don't feel much like being together, and the piano sound (GeneralUser?) alone sounds a bit bland.

Monochromatic As I'll Be Monochromatic As I'll Be

Rated 4.5 / 5 stars

I could almost write a tale about this. :p There once was a musician, SourJovis, who took place in a contest at Newgrounds. The song was relaxing and calm, with an oldskool feeling to it, but it didn't quite meet the theme etc. etc. etc.

Seriously though, the keywords describing this song are "calm" and "old-school" (or however that is spelt). Having lyrics in was not a bad idea. Not. But I couldn't make out the lyrics (I'm bad at that anyway, but still) if you hadn't actually put the lyrics into the description. And seeing as I didn't have those during the vote-phase... :/ In the end it took a lot away from "monochromatic" without adding anything, except color.

However, I'm now not reviewing the track from the contest perspective, I'm looking at/listening to it as an individual piece of music. And IMO it deserves 4.5/5 (because of the vocoder garbling the lyrics)

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SourJovis responds:

A lot of people didn't think it suited the theme no. That came as quite a surprise to me, because it was the first thing that came to mind, and the making of the song all went very smoothly. Maybe I should make another version of the song with the natural sounding vocals. I'll see if it doesn't disappoint.

8-bit Story Book (Mac13) 8-bit Story Book (Mac13)

Rated 4.5 / 5 stars

I like how it turns out from a happy go-go tune to something more tense. I don't dig much of the new-age 8-bit, but this sounds good (that is, melodies and all :D). Delivers the mood nicely (as it's kind of supposed to).
Also, don't ask why, but the structure reminds me a bit of Doom's endgame theme :D You know, dead rabbit ending (or sth like that).
(If you wonder why 4.5 stars, I rarely give full 5 star scores. All artistic pieces have something to improve, even if it wasn't obvious. In the vote system my vote still goes for 5)

GamekrazzyProduction responds:

Ah cool! Thanks for the review!

Armingeddon (Mac13) Armingeddon (Mac13)

Rated 3.5 / 5 stars

Good as an individual track, but let's be honest: I don't see much of a "tension" or "climax" rising at any point. D: It's pretty much what JJM said about the chord progression.
Good luck to the contest :)

E-lie responds:

I definitely disagree with the song not having "tension" or "climax", but thanks for the criticism.