The Oxford Commentaries (Skoochies Reviews)

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The Oxford Commentaries (Skoochies Reviews)

Post by king_arthur » Mon Jan 30, 2012 11:55 am

Just in case it's the lack of a review thread that's holding up posting the songs...

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Re: The Oxford Commentaries (Skoochies Reviews)

Post by AJOwens » Mon Jan 30, 2012 12:09 pm

What's probably holding it up is life outside SONGFIGHT!. (Is that the right punctuation?)

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Re: The Oxford Commentaries (Skoochies Reviews)

Post by inevitableguy » Mon Jan 30, 2012 7:57 pm

HA! Love the thread title.
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Re: The Oxford Commentaries (Skoochies Reviews)

Post by Paco Del Stinko » Tue Jan 31, 2012 8:34 am

FauX This is energetic and fun, but could use a little variation. The lead is good, raw. But how about a slightly funky bass and drum breakdown with a menacing vocal? The nah-nahs are good but the lead vocal starts sounding out of place, energy or delivery-wise as the song goes on. This is a good foundation that doesn't lack overall excitement.


James Owens Very nice. A slightly world weary delivery over a descriptive tale, although I'm not sure I get the whole story (probably me, though). The muscianship is most excellent and the progression doesn't get old because of the slow build and layers. It might be nice if there was a one time bridge that opened up in a relevatory cloudbusrt of strings or twinkling piano trills or something. Regardless, solid and mature, nicely done.


King Arthur I like the main riff a lot and the bacon fat guitar sound. The groove is comfy. While I enjoy the story and can relate to playing in low/no budget bands in 1984 (!) I'm unclear to the title reference in the chorus. I like the treble and hiss line, though. Some interesting melodic turns, like the major sounding chorus. Nice articulate mix, too.


Klownhole I see a 5000 ton garbage truck on tank treads coming my way when I hear this. This is not to say that this is garbage, by any means. The progression is scary and tough, the drums face pound and the organ creeps up to tickle the back of your neck. And the vocals, while juggling lines, are fantastic, especially when screaming or scatting. Indeed, the garbage truck is here to take me and all in its path to the dump.


Paco del Stinko Me in my would be country mode. Cheap, but harmless. Except for the lane accent, I suppose.

Sausage That guitar sound would be better served being back in the mix. I like what it does, strangely. This song is messy, but it reminds me of early experimenting, by myself and with others, way back when, especially the cheap and dumb lyrics. This would be fun if took off after all of the stuttering, double timing to an explosive finish. The lead is good for melting my ear drums, thank you.


Sep Ah, here at the prom everything is ok. Double vocals that I can't hear are problematic. Bring'em up in the mix. The mellow guitar is nice, and the instrumentation is pleasant and teeters towards dreamy. Edit or re-arrange this down by a minute+, re-record the vocals, maybe add something a little shinier and back in the mix to cut through the fog, and this would be much improved. Needs a more distinctive chorus too.


Smashy Claw This is good punkish fun with enough melody to keep it poppy. Good arrangement with rocking accents. Vocal delivery is very good and feels as though it leads the song along. Good playing and mix, nothing wimps out here. Ends quick and loses a bit of its punch by the end, but that's ok, this is a fun little nugget of rock.
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Re: The Oxford Commentaries (Skoochies Reviews)

Post by Father Bingo » Tue Jan 31, 2012 8:46 am

Sausage? Wow, Les Claypool's on Song Fight!
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http://www.lesclaypool.com/discography/sausage/


EDIT: Les... what happened?
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Re: The Oxford Commentaries (Skoochies Reviews)

Post by Generic » Tue Jan 31, 2012 9:22 am

I haven't listened to any of the songs from this fight yet, but Klownhole wins, just 'cuz.
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Re: The Oxford Commentaries (Skoochies Reviews)

Post by Stubby Phillips » Tue Jan 31, 2012 11:52 am

FauX: Punk energy is good for the soul. This is screaming for some screaming, but I'll take what I can get. This has a place in the world.

King Arthur: I can relate to the "all treble and hiss -- don't forget to turn the Dolby on" line. Good story. Good song.

Paco del Stinko: I like the country solo, except that it's in a country song. Everything's good. I don't know whether to add or subtract points for including that awkward "pestilence" line.

Sausage: The stereo vox works well in my listening space. The bass doesn't, and the guitar solo's too loud. The big vox effects could work, but they are naked out there without the low end. Lack of melodic turns didn't bother me as much as I thought it should. I detect a good voice. Interesting...

Klownhole: How did you get Roger Daltry to sing this? Everclear? Funny as hell. It really sets a mood, and delivers -- for 1-2 minutes too long. Still -- it's (lower case) epic.

James Owens: IOTBS/Super 8? Stangely geeky English folk. All competently done. Seems a bit long to me -- too many verses? Easily bored?

Smashy Claw: Not bad. Tight. I can hear the energy, but don't realy feel it. The scream is the best part of the vocal, but it's all good-ish. Goodly? Good-like.

Sep: What? This isn't bad, but it sounds bad. What'd you say? Low freq overload/distortion (+ plosives at the end) kinda distract. The playing's good, and I think the vocals are fine, though it's hard to tell 'cause they're SO LOW. This needs to be re-mixed/recorded. Those orange and red lights are pretty, but should be avoided. And maybe get some better headphones/speakers.

Votes for Faux, King, Klown, Smashy. Maybe Sausage.
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Re: The Oxford Commentaries (Skoochies Reviews)

Post by BBABM » Tue Jan 31, 2012 2:09 pm

ive only briefly listened to the songs once over, i like smashy the best for now. in other news, i plan on playing my unrecorded entry for this fight during a small acoustic set tonight, if i can get it recorded and sounding ok, ill post a youtube or something in here so you can all ignore it and go about your busy lives.
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Re: The Oxford Commentaries (Skoochies Reviews)

Post by hillbilly » Tue Jan 31, 2012 3:48 pm

Stink --know you were funning but mean licks on that acoustic. you do country well
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Re: The Oxford Commentaries (Skoochies Reviews)

Post by Paco Del Stinko » Wed Feb 01, 2012 9:08 am

Heh. I was thinking of you while recording this, Billy. Good thing I held back on my lame accent - it'd only have been worse. But hey, I get shit for my so called Boston accent all the time. That guitar is pretty sloppy if you listen close, so please don't! :)
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Re: The Oxford Commentaries (Skoochies Reviews)

Post by signboy » Wed Feb 01, 2012 10:08 am

I'm going to pretend that the production on all of these is immaculate and radio-ready, because you can get recording & mixing advice elsewhere. An effort to bring some constructive advice to songwriting seems to come at the expense of sounding like a self-aggrandizing ass. Take what you will.

Faux-
I like this. It needs a good breakdown, work those na nas!The chorus is just brainless enough to be awesome. The lyrics nail the style.

James Owens-
You've got a shadow of a killer melody going on the piano. Damn near Eltonesque. This would be a lot better if the vocals used that. It would add much more dimension & dynamics to the song, given the way the rest of the vocals hang around in the same space. So close to giving me a song, piano man.

King Arthur-
This reminds me of The Northern Pikes, if that means anything. The Dolby bit makes this. This really could use some background "ooohhing" in the chorus.

Klownhole-
ah, nothin like the sound of a klown's hole in the morning.Wait, did you just hit a note at 1:10 & 3:07? If I were trying to bring out the best in Klownhole, I would add some dynamics, particularly in the drums. The vocals are screaming (heh) for the music to help them out. Also, some backing vocals would help pin the lead vocals into some specific place, and add some interest in the bits between noises.

Paco Del Stinko-
haha, "against Pestilence" is in fact unbelievably awkward. It kinda works though. You do with twang what Jay Z does with ebonics. Overall, stellar playing, sir. Solid crack at the genre.

Sausage-
This feels like the drums should be doing some major tom work (salutes Major Tom). Once again, dynamics would make this stick with me a lot more. Right after the solo, at ~2:30, bring shit right down, and work the vocal layers. The change at 0:43 as well, really wants to sit in a different dynamic spot than the verse before it. The biggest thing that's hurting this is that the hook is using the same melody as the verse. I'm not sure which one should change, as they both seem to work, just not together. It gets same-ey.

Sep-
I played this through 3 times, looking for a chorus. The lack of one makes this boring. I see that you were trying to go with an instrumental melody for chorus, but it doesn't quite work. It sounds overall just like the rest. Not sure what you're using for drums, but surely there's a way to program a change up?

Smashy Claw- win
killer vocal melody. Great dynamics. Not too overcomplicated. Most people looking to rock should take notes. Given the style, the only thing I would change is some backing vocals to make the chorus really pop.
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Re: The Oxford Commentaries (Skoochies Reviews)

Post by hillbilly » Fri Feb 03, 2012 4:29 pm

Stink did you mean to slap and pluck or are your strings to low? i bet that acoustic plays well. and while im at it what string you and ROSS use
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Re: The Oxford Commentaries (Skoochies Reviews)

Post by hillbilly » Fri Feb 03, 2012 4:29 pm

Stink did you mean to slap and pluck or are your strings to low? i bet that acoustic plays well. and while im at it what string you and ROSS use
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Re: The Oxford Commentaries (Skoochies Reviews)

Post by Billy's Little Trip » Fri Feb 03, 2012 10:09 pm

^ You can say THAT again. :D
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Re: The Oxford Commentaries (Skoochies Reviews)

Post by Paco Del Stinko » Sat Feb 04, 2012 9:25 am

Hilly Bill: The acoustic guitar in this track is a Hondo copy of a Martin. Very nice guitar that you wouldn't think was a Hondo until you look. Strung with 009s, like it says to inside the soundhole. It's a breeze to play if a little thin sounding. Yeah, my 'picking' is not precise, it's more like shoot in the the general direction and hope it comes out ok. Shotgun style, I suppose one might call it. :)
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Re: The Oxford Commentaries (Skoochies Reviews)

Post by hillbilly » Sat Feb 04, 2012 3:03 pm

That ole Hondo sounds pretty good brother,i am really digging light Elixir's, they are on sale at my local Musis center. Think the high e is a 12, still plays like butter. Hey Billy
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Re: The Oxford Commentaries (Skoochies Reviews)

Post by BBABM » Wed Feb 08, 2012 9:54 pm



this is me playing my entry for Pestilence, carcass and death at skoochies live at a gig a week or so ago. im a little late for everything, but i did write a song!
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Re: The Oxford Commentaries (Skoochies Reviews)

Post by AJOwens » Thu Feb 09, 2012 8:21 pm

FauX The band sounds appropriately reckless for the song, but the singing doesn't. To match them up, you'd need either hoarse-throated, screaming, party-hard vocals, or a precise, almost clinically frenetic band a la Ramones. The music and the melody seem unvarying even for the genre. Good playing, good recording, pretty good mix.

James Owens Somehow I got through the guitar part, but I should practice more. Likewise the keyboard, but with MIDI I could patch up the sloppiness. The vocal recording suffered badly from sibilance, and I couldn't fix it with EQ -- turned out to be compression settings. The song is a bit long, but I couldn't lose any verses, and the piano solo felt like it needed to be there. A contrasting part would have made the whole thing even longer, so it was a bad tradeoff all round. Took me ages to record, what with learning to play the instruments and all. No wonder I sound world-weary.

King Arthur Good, clean, driving sound; endearing lyrics, melody and singing; imaginative changes. Needs a hook, but fine work all around. One of my favourites for the fight. (Signboy mentioned the Northern Pikes, but I don't get that at all.)

Klownhole Fun vocal performance, with solid backup. The organ adds a nice touch. It could have been self-indulgent, but somehow its eccentric outrageousness draws me in. It runs a little long.

Paco del Stinko Everything sounds right, except maybe the crisp, bright bass tone. I'd be thinking washtub. The chords stray from the typical pattern in interesting ways. Nice guitar work; sometimes it feels like it's at the limit, but you succeed in pulling it off. Good harmonies and arrangement, tight drumming. Infectiously entertaining.

Sausage Nice rhythmic take on the title. The high spectrum is intense even for my old ears, and my hearing rolls off at 14K or so. The guitar solo takes this to an unfair extreme -- could be notched down. The sparse arrangement works, and the vocal treatments are interesting, but I miss a bass. The overall shape of the song is satisfying.

Sep This is sweet, gentle, and pleasant; it lulls so that I don't even mind the length. The guitar has a flat sound (in the sense of sonic space, not pitch) and could use a little reverb. I like the bass pattern, it's different and it works. Around the 3:00 mark I'm hearing artifacts of some kind, weird deep sounds that might result from reprocessed mp3 tracks or something. The singing is frequently off-pitch, but not by a lot; maybe you just need to focus more on where you are as you sing.

Smashy Claw Tuneful; good mix, good timbres; odd and interesting rhythms in the vocal line by times. Excellent scream! Guitar solo carries the mood well. A good song with something of a commercial quality (if anything in the fight reminds me of the Northern Pikes, this would be it).
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Re: The Oxford Commentaries (Skoochies Reviews)

Post by Rabid Garfunkel » Tue Feb 14, 2012 6:12 pm

My asshole comments on the fight... and wait, my message contains too many smilies??? WTF?!?!?

Berkeley Social Scene
Zappa! Oh wait, not quite. Nice '70s mainline feel. Singer's struggling in the upper register, but hey, don't we all? Damn, wish Erin was available for this track, if only to mask the lead's struggle. Damn, I want to send some honeyed tea to your studio.

DJ Ranger Den
Creepiest voice award goes to... (no, that's a good thing, and next fight you can mock me, 'kay?) Where's the melody, where's the hook, dear?

FauX
Waiting for '80s Charlie Sheen to walk onstage. Arrrrrrgh! Synth snare needs reverb! Anything to blend it in to the mix... But. There's a mike. In front of you. Don't hold back. If you start clipping, then dial the input down and let it rip, yo. Do spoken word, or let your junkyard dog out to HOWL.

heine
If you're gonna use canned drums, then at least sync 'em up. That ride cymbal's arrhythmic fit is killing the song. For me. Nice triumphant synth patch. Dig it. Those aren't canned drums, are they? No weed for the drummer until *after* the track's laid down.

Heuristics Inc.
Bill! Yay! Challenge my paradigms! Umm, the backing track is trés sweet, but the vocal track is lacking... something, the implicit intensity that the music implies. Sort of a depressing lullaby.

Jimbo Jangles
Erm. G&G ain't my strength, but I'd say get over your mixing-my-own-voice weirdness and put the vox ON TOP of the guitar track. Pay as much attention to your vocal track as you do to getting the guitar sounding right. Hell, even double the track and hard pan both the vox tracks. Because a song is the story the *vocals* tell.

John H
Dig the flavor of the backing track, hell, I've used 'em quite like it. But your... spitting... is that what you crazy kids call it? Is... sitting on the backing track like karaoke, it takes the listener (well, me) out of the story space and wandering away. And what, no Babylon 5 references? For shame [insert winkie smilie here]

Jon Eric
Vox buried, spank your piano into place :-D Dry vox aren't sitting well with the rest of the processed (natural 'verb, &c) instrumentation, alas. A song is a destination, not a road travelled.

King Arthur
Digging the Carlos-in-Mexico flavor of the guitar. This is a damned good mix (as usual). All the rest of y'all, pay attention! Okay, the harmonium (?) is a little weird for the mix, but this is the first vote-worthy song I've heard.

Lex Butera & Erica Lee
Real instruments of the strange variety? Yay. Vox up, though. Lead should cut through the mix like a diamond blade through flesh. Homework: A-B your mix with anything Portishead has recorded. The potential of this song has me unsafe to walk around children (the arousal issue [insert winkie smilie here]).

Manhattan Glutton
Nice arena rock. No complaints, hooky, solid... oh wait, the toy piano feels like an incidental :-( I just gotta bitch bitch and bitch, don't I? Might as well throw in swelling strings. Hell, this is tasty. I'd open for this song, if'n y'all dumped the toy piano.

Paco del Stinko
Earworm! Damnit, how am I supposed to listen to rest of the fight now? Can you change your name to X_Paco del Stinko or something farther down the alphabet so I don't get the mental reset? Yah, selfish cocksucker, me.

Pigfarmer Jr
Good mix in the G&G. But then, Ross Durand is after you, so the A-game is the minimum to bring... Damn, third (? I've lost count) vote in this fight. Crap, I was gonna compliment your vibrato and then you go into a flatline spoken word verse/outro... totally lost the passion of the singer's whatever :-(

Ross Durand
No complaints. No suggestions. Vote. Liking the plays on words. Question: what's synthetic and what's live? If I ever get close to Mike Watt, I'm throwing your stuff his way :-D

Sausage
Harmony bias. Drum machine bias. Good live (stage/club) sound, yo. I can see the long-tressed patrons filling the air with their head banging. (Not a bad thing, btw.) Good stompy proud song. Kudos.

Steve Durand
Nice swampy groove. Vox is too clean to mesh with it, but... the swamp has me getting my ankles wet. I dunno, some grit &or grime on the vox won;d tie it all up in a nice package.

Tuners Union
Your horns are too out front. Are your vocals (and your lyrics) important to you? It's a nice bibbledy bip groove, but... your instruments are wiping the slate clean with the vox.

WreckdoM
Ummm... yay WreckDom! Good f-in mix. Go, go, go! Oh wait, it's like a John Carpenter soundtrack/song. Good vibe, but not a transporting one.
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Re: The Oxford Commentaries (Skoochies Reviews)

Post by Manhattan Glutton » Tue Feb 14, 2012 10:12 pm

I blame the reviews link.
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Re: The Oxford Commentaries (Skoochies Reviews)

Post by Steve Durand » Tue Feb 14, 2012 10:20 pm

Hey MG!

I think you posted these reviews in the wrong thread.
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Re: The Oxford Commentaries (Skoochies Reviews)

Post by HeuristicsInc » Wed Feb 15, 2012 8:39 am

Rabid's is in the wrong thread too :)
Agree on the vox, though.
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