Nur Ein XV Final Round "Pistols At Dawn"

There can be only one.
User avatar
grumpymike
Lemmy
Posts: 341
Joined: Sun Apr 17, 2016 3:12 pm
Instruments: Rage and curmudgeonry
Recording Method: Zero-turn lawnmower
Submitting as: Grumpy Mike

Re: Nur Ein XV Final Round "Pistols At Dawn"

Post by grumpymike »

Instead of editing the last New Ugly episode, I decided to bring my D game.

I had fun trying stuff, but I clearly have a lot of criticism for my own song here. Also it's probably "not in this moment"ed even though it's about how people dueled 200 years ago.
Last edited by grumpymike on Sun Jun 28, 2020 9:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
Generic
Ozzy
Posts: 5498
Joined: Sat Sep 25, 2004 11:45 am
Instruments: Piano, Guitar, Harmonica, Mandolin, Accordion, Bass
Recording Method: Cubase 10.5
Submitting as: Jon Eric, Hunky
Pronouns: He/Him
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Contact:

Re: Nur Ein XV Final Round "Pistols At Dawn"

Post by Generic »

Mine is submitted.

For liner notes... Well... I actually would prefer not to elaborate on my lyrics. They're coming from a somewhat similar place to my "This is Fine." Musically, though, I don't mind saying, I chose to focus on the "your" part of "Bring your A game."

I haven't really painted with the indie-folk brush in a while, but it used to be my "main" genre. Upbeat, guitar-based songs, usually acoustic, usually swung, often with bright major-key melodies belying dark lyrics. I often didn't know how to describe this kind of music, but several years later there was sort of an explosion of Indie Folk bands like Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeroes, The Lumineers, and to some extent Mumford & Sons.

This year, I've been jumping all over the genre map, with some pretty good results. But I figured, for this last round, I don't want to succeed or fail by doing a pastiche of someone else. So I decided to return to indie folk for this challenge... Only this time I wanted to do it better than I've ever done it before. Sort of a triumphant return to a classic "Jon Eric song." So that's my A Game. Win or lose, I did it my way.

Btw, I notice that the cover art for this round is up. I love it. Have the competitors' names ever been incorporated into the art before?
"Warren Zevon would be proud." -Reve Mosquito

Jon Eric - Get your feel on.
Website powered by Spud's Amazing Website Machine.

PLAY DISC! - A podcast of deep dives into full albums.
User avatar
Generic
Ozzy
Posts: 5498
Joined: Sat Sep 25, 2004 11:45 am
Instruments: Piano, Guitar, Harmonica, Mandolin, Accordion, Bass
Recording Method: Cubase 10.5
Submitting as: Jon Eric, Hunky
Pronouns: He/Him
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Contact:

Re: Nur Ein XV Final Round "Pistols At Dawn"

Post by Generic »

Cavedwellers - I really like what you did with the title! It's amazingly dynamic; it almost feels like a different song in each section. I was hoping that listening to our songs side by side would give me enough information to make a prediction, but honestly I still have no idea. May the best man/band win!

...nine, ten... Fire.

NUR EIN!!!!!!!
"Warren Zevon would be proud." -Reve Mosquito

Jon Eric - Get your feel on.
Website powered by Spud's Amazing Website Machine.

PLAY DISC! - A podcast of deep dives into full albums.
User avatar
glennny
Paul
Posts: 2078
Joined: Sat Mar 04, 2006 2:39 am
Instruments: Guitar, Bass, Mandolin, Dobro, Banjo, E-Bow, Glock
Recording Method: Garageband
Submitting as: Berkeley Social Scene
Location: Castro Valley, California

Re: Nur Ein XV Final Round "Pistols At Dawn"

Post by glennny »

Good job Jon, nice song!

Look at the artwork for Cassettes and Color Me Up.

I agree the artwork for Pistols at Dawn is stellar!
Phillipso, Older Brothers, Semolina Pilchards, Zipline , Thank Glennny for the Frisbee, The Odoriferous Valley, The Worldly Self Assurance, Berkeley Social Scene, Very Gentle Knives, Daddy Bop Swing Set, GUNS, The Kraken Lives, Cavedwellers
User avatar
vowlvom
Lita
Posts: 794
Joined: Wed May 17, 2017 3:29 am
Instruments: guitar, keys, "other"
Recording Method: PC, reaper, ableton
Submitting as: Vowl Sounds, Vom Vorton
Pronouns: he/him
Contact:

Re: Nur Ein XV Final Round "Pistols At Dawn"

Post by vowlvom »

A zip containing all of the songs may not be as useful at this point of the contest, but might as well complete the set, right?

Nur Ein XV - Round 7

My alternate, considerably stupider artwork:

Image

Excellent work from both finalists and all of the shadows, will hopefully muster one last burst of energy to post some final reviews and thoughts tomorrow.
User avatar
glennny
Paul
Posts: 2078
Joined: Sat Mar 04, 2006 2:39 am
Instruments: Guitar, Bass, Mandolin, Dobro, Banjo, E-Bow, Glock
Recording Method: Garageband
Submitting as: Berkeley Social Scene
Location: Castro Valley, California

Re: Nur Ein XV Final Round "Pistols At Dawn"

Post by glennny »

Cavedwellers would like to give special thanks to Anna-Sophia for some lovely cello playing!
Phillipso, Older Brothers, Semolina Pilchards, Zipline , Thank Glennny for the Frisbee, The Odoriferous Valley, The Worldly Self Assurance, Berkeley Social Scene, Very Gentle Knives, Daddy Bop Swing Set, GUNS, The Kraken Lives, Cavedwellers
User avatar
crumpart
Mick
Posts: 562
Joined: Wed Aug 07, 2019 8:04 am
Instruments: Proficient??? Erm. Guitar, violin, recorder.
Submitting as: Hot Pink Halo
Pronouns: She/her
Location: Cork, Ireland
Contact:

Re: Nur Ein XV Final Round "Pistols At Dawn"

Post by crumpart »

vowlvom wrote:
Mon Jun 29, 2020 5:28 am
A zip containing all of the songs may not be as useful at this point of the contest, but might as well complete the set, right?
Screen Shot 2020-06-29 at 5.00.01 pm.png
Screen Shot 2020-06-29 at 5.00.01 pm.png (15.35 KiB) Viewed 278 times
172 songs.

In related news, I think I just had a Nur Ein related mid-afternoon two hour nap, like the kind you have right after you finish your end-of-year exams.
Devil’s got me Lindt! Devil’s got me Lindt!
User avatar
crumpart
Mick
Posts: 562
Joined: Wed Aug 07, 2019 8:04 am
Instruments: Proficient??? Erm. Guitar, violin, recorder.
Submitting as: Hot Pink Halo
Pronouns: She/her
Location: Cork, Ireland
Contact:

Re: Nur Ein XV Final Round "Pistols At Dawn"

Post by crumpart »

Also, I meant to say thanks for the ZIP files then Vom! That was why I was posting! Thanks!
Devil’s got me Lindt! Devil’s got me Lindt!
User avatar
vowlvom
Lita
Posts: 794
Joined: Wed May 17, 2017 3:29 am
Instruments: guitar, keys, "other"
Recording Method: PC, reaper, ableton
Submitting as: Vowl Sounds, Vom Vorton
Pronouns: he/him
Contact:

Re: Nur Ein XV Final Round "Pistols At Dawn"

Post by vowlvom »

Last set of reviews. Shout out to the people who've kept shadowing all along! Judging was a fucking nightmare and I wouldn't do it again! Peace out!

Cavedwellers - love the arrangement, with the piano and strings there's almost a kind of chamber-pop vibe to this, which combines with the wordy, clever lyrics to oddly remind me of Belle & Sebastian (and particularly "Nobody's Empire") which is a comparison I never expected to make on a Cavedwellers song. The part where the guitars really kick on the title line absolutely rules, totally anthemic and also it really feels like it fits the title, like we're almost getting into Adam and the Ants highwayman territory for a second there. There are a couple of lines that bugged me lyrically, particularly the "anger and fear set bells bonging" line which feels extremely clunky, but for the most part I liked this a whole lot and it definitely feels like you raised your game for the final.

Jon Eric - I love the way your words flow, and you've come up with some fantastic melodies here, especially on the pre-chorus which is beautiful. The "fall upon" part of your chorus really reminds me of something that I can't put my finger on and it's driving me slightly crazy! The overall vibe reminds me a little of Antarctica Takes It! who I liked a lot. Some clever moments throughout the song, I like the whistled hook, the gang-vocal "world's smallest violin!" and the speed-up and rhythmical shift at the end. For some reason the one part of this that bugs me a little is the shift from pre-chorus to chorus where the wistful emotion of that sweet melody feels a little undercut by the abrupt shift to bouncy banjo arpeggios.

Two very good songs and I still haven't figured out which one my vote is going to. But either way, excellent work to both of you, thanks for being great contestants, throwing yourselves into the challenges and repeatedly upping your games!

Shadows:

Balance Lost - another strong shadow, that intro riff and the bubbling arpeggios feel like Classic Balance Lost to me. I love the "what's wrong with pistols at noon?" premise and the lyric as a whole reminds me of the episode of the Simpsons where Homer starts mimicking Zorro and eventually picks a duel with the wrong guy. I'm not crazy about the vocal melody in the verse, something about the long notes at the end of each line bugs me for some reason, but I like everything else about this - the extra layers of killer synth melodies that come in later on are especially great.

Grumpy Mike - I like the deep, dark bass that kicks in for your chorus and the layered vocals, and I think somehow you were the only person to actually use a gunshot sample? It's a really effective end to the chorus. I'm not as keen on the verses, the lyrics feel a little clunky in places, but the general darkly atmospheric vibe is done well.

Hot Pink Halo - violins sounding great again and I like the insistent rhythm. Doubled vocal works well to lift the chorus, and there's some nice use of dynamics with the string layers, although the vocal sometimes gets a little buried in the music. It would have been cool to have the guitar drop out at some point for a section with just strings and vocals, maybe! But I enjoyed this, one of your best Nur Ein submissions I think.

Mandibles - not crazy about this mix for this one, the guitar is so fuzzy that it frequently just kinda feels like sonic mush and the kick drum on the verses is really clicky and ear-fatiguing, especially on headphones. Solid song other than the mix though, with an excellent sense of drama and a great vocal performance - those high notes are amazing.

Max Bombast - I like the western vibes, which combine nicely with some very Max fuzz-bass riffing. The way the balance of the instruments shifts on the chorus is really sweet. I wish the harmonies on the last chorus were a little tighter, but this was fun.

see-man-ski - high-five for another song about Dawn! Poor old Dawn. Interesting arrangement, I like the organ stabs and the arpeggios that come in on the pre-chorus / chorus which sound somehow halfway between guitar harmonics and a harpsichord? Really nice mix too, plenty of space for the vocal despite the wealth of Other Stuff going on. Really nice guitar solo, too. And I hardly ever praise a guitar solo! Enjoyed this a lot.

The Serviettes - intriguing and strange rhythms on that first verse. Moody arrangement works well with your vocal, I like the sparse, shimmering percussion and the rich bass. I also like the sonic landscape explodes at the end of the chorus, although it feels like there's a clash in tuning between your voice and some of the instrumentation that comes in at that point first time around which is a shame at such a critical point of the song. Very end is also a bit sudden, give me more of a fade!

Vom Vorton - pleased with this one, apart from some dodgy ooh tuning that I couldn't fix because apparently my voice goes to shit after an hour of recording these days, and Melodyne apparently does have SOME limits. Leave Dawn alone, you bastards.
User avatar
crumpart
Mick
Posts: 562
Joined: Wed Aug 07, 2019 8:04 am
Instruments: Proficient??? Erm. Guitar, violin, recorder.
Submitting as: Hot Pink Halo
Pronouns: She/her
Location: Cork, Ireland
Contact:

Re: Nur Ein XV Final Round "Pistols At Dawn"

Post by crumpart »

vowlvom wrote:
Tue Jun 30, 2020 3:13 am
Hot Pink Halo - violins sounding great again and I like the insistent rhythm. Doubled vocal works well to lift the chorus, and there's some nice use of dynamics with the string layers, although the vocal sometimes gets a little buried in the music. It would have been cool to have the guitar drop out at some point for a section with just strings and vocals, maybe! But I enjoyed this, one of your best Nur Ein submissions I think.
Thanks, for this and for shadow reviews all throughout. I appreciate it. :)

I agree about the vocal being not quite all there. I thought it would be a good idea to record the vocals last, right after all the violin. I also started with a violin practice session to get warmed up, and it turns out none of that was a great idea; that much sound right next to my head for that long shot my ears for the day and I struggled to sing well.

Anyway, today I actually had the house to myself for the day (!!!) so I rerecorded all my vocals. I also got rid of the finger picked guitar because I recorded it really poorly, and added my favourite fake marimba and a couple of other bits instead. We finally got some extra screw adaptors for all our mics, so I actually got out the good acoustic guitar and tried to record it properly this time around, instead of being lazy and recording my shitty acoustic on a line in and throwing a bunch of effects on it. I think I did an ok job with the strummed part, but I had to push up the gain on the fingerpicked stuff because I didn't know what else to do, and a lot of room/white noise was picked up. I mix with the volume really low, so I didn't notice until the next day when I listened on headphones again. Glad it's gone now, because it was detracting more than it was adding.

New mix here:

Devil’s got me Lindt! Devil’s got me Lindt!
User avatar
crumpart
Mick
Posts: 562
Joined: Wed Aug 07, 2019 8:04 am
Instruments: Proficient??? Erm. Guitar, violin, recorder.
Submitting as: Hot Pink Halo
Pronouns: She/her
Location: Cork, Ireland
Contact:

Re: Nur Ein XV Final Round "Pistols At Dawn"

Post by crumpart »

I've sent in my vote! It was hard! I'm glad I only had to choose between two.
Devil’s got me Lindt! Devil’s got me Lindt!
User avatar
Niveous
Ozzy
Posts: 6800
Joined: Mon Sep 27, 2004 6:45 am
Instruments: vocals, songwriting, guitar
Submitting as: Lucky Witch and the Righteous Ghost
Location: Jersey City, NJ
Contact:

Re: Nur Ein XV Final Round "Pistols At Dawn"

Post by Niveous »

Okay folks....

You may have seen that I posted up a final score.

Since then I have heard that some people assumed that the polls would be open until 12PM Eastern/ 9PM Pacific. I don't know why.

But I don't want to cut this short if votes are still coming in.

(I mean, it is just picking your favorite of 2 songs within a 30+ hour timeframe but hey...)

So, I will give it until midnight.
"I'd like to see 1984 redubbed with this in the soundtrack."- Furrypedro.
NUR EIN!
X-Tokyo
Lucky Witch and the Righteous Ghost
User avatar
Lunkhead
Ozzy
Posts: 6703
Joined: Sat Sep 25, 2004 12:14 pm
Instruments: many
Recording Method: cubase/reason/mac/tascam4x4
Submitting as: Berkeley Social Scene, Merisan, Tiny Robots
Pronouns: he/him
Location: Berkeley, CA
Contact:

Re: Nur Ein XV Final Round "Pistols At Dawn"

Post by Lunkhead »

I'm not a judge and I have a lot of stuff going these couple of days between work and other obligations, so excuse me if I was planning to get to this when I had time, which was going to be tonight after I'm done with work.

My own personal assumption about the time was based on experience as a judge that the expectation was for judges to get their rankings done within 48-hours plus many past years as a participant and when the judging results went up. Past years participating with BSS, we were usually at practice on Tuesday nights when the results would go up, or, they'd maybe even go up later due to things like tardy/AWOL judges.

The schedule unfortunately doesn't actually mention any times other than the song due time, so maybe that's an area to improve in the future:

viewtopic.php?p=216411#p216411

I guess I had assumed the end date of the round being a minute shy of midnight Sunday night (Eastern) and the judging period being "Monday and Tuesday" (presumably Eastern) implied that the end of the judging/voting period would be Tuesday at or a minute shy of midnight (Eastern).

I wouldn't have said anything publicly except I feel like
I don't know why.
and
I mean, it is just picking your favorite of 2 songs within a 30+ hour timeframe but hey
were calling me out with some snark. Really not trying to antagonize and I know this is all "for fun" but also I'm a computer programmer so I get confused when things are not perfectly ordered. :lol:
User avatar
Niveous
Ozzy
Posts: 6800
Joined: Mon Sep 27, 2004 6:45 am
Instruments: vocals, songwriting, guitar
Submitting as: Lucky Witch and the Righteous Ghost
Location: Jersey City, NJ
Contact:

Re: Nur Ein XV Final Round "Pistols At Dawn"

Post by Niveous »

Lunkhead wrote:
Tue Jun 30, 2020 5:16 pm
I wouldn't have said anything publicly except I feel like
I don't know why.
and
I mean, it is just picking your favorite of 2 songs within a 30+ hour timeframe but hey
were calling me out with some snark. Really not trying to antagonize and I know this is all "for fun" but also I'm a computer programmer so I get confused when things are not perfectly ordered. :lol:
Sam, I'm sorry if you felt like I was calling you out. That was not my intention. I happened to get an email before yours that said "this is bullshit" and that set off my remark in turn. Please accept my apology. That little bit of snark was not intended for you in the slightest.

I should've put in a cut off time and that's on me.
"I'd like to see 1984 redubbed with this in the soundtrack."- Furrypedro.
NUR EIN!
X-Tokyo
Lucky Witch and the Righteous Ghost
User avatar
Lunkhead
Ozzy
Posts: 6703
Joined: Sat Sep 25, 2004 12:14 pm
Instruments: many
Recording Method: cubase/reason/mac/tascam4x4
Submitting as: Berkeley Social Scene, Merisan, Tiny Robots
Pronouns: he/him
Location: Berkeley, CA
Contact:

Re: Nur Ein XV Final Round "Pistols At Dawn"

Post by Lunkhead »

Ah, no worries. Sorry I presumed there. My bad! I'm taking this all too seriously and overreacting, oy. :/ Anyway, thanks again to you and the judges, and great jobs on the final songs to the finalists.
User avatar
Lunkhead
Ozzy
Posts: 6703
Joined: Sat Sep 25, 2004 12:14 pm
Instruments: many
Recording Method: cubase/reason/mac/tascam4x4
Submitting as: Berkeley Social Scene, Merisan, Tiny Robots
Pronouns: he/him
Location: Berkeley, CA
Contact:

Re: Nur Ein XV Final Round "Pistols At Dawn"

Post by Lunkhead »

Congrats Jon Eric! Great showing this year!
User avatar
Generic
Ozzy
Posts: 5498
Joined: Sat Sep 25, 2004 11:45 am
Instruments: Piano, Guitar, Harmonica, Mandolin, Accordion, Bass
Recording Method: Cubase 10.5
Submitting as: Jon Eric, Hunky
Pronouns: He/Him
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Contact:

Re: Nur Ein XV Final Round "Pistols At Dawn"

Post by Generic »

Phew! What an evening!

Glen and Truth, your song was fantastic, and truly represented your "A" game. I would not have been disappointed to lose to you. Well played all around. I'm also grateful that Balance Lost had already been eliminated, because I'm reasonably sure he had us both beat with his "Pistols at Dawn." That track was amazing!

These things don't happen in a vacuum, though. A huge thank you to Niveous and the five judges! And I especially want to single out Glenn Case for being such an inspiring figure. Glenn was a guest on my podcast back in January, and talking to him inspired me to get out the guitar and start writing songs again for the first time in a couple of years. Had that interview not happened, I don't think I would have indulged my whim to enter this year when I saw the title "This is Fine." Also big thanks to the guys in the #SongFight! IRC room, for advising on my mixes and generally being present and supportive. Mike Lamb was especially specific in his mix feedback for a few of these. And of course, Holly Furlone guested on my Round 3 song, with Jim Tyrell coordinating between us, and Jim also contributed to the orchestra on my Round 4 song. I'm grateful to everyone who helped along the way!

Also... does anyone else kinda miss the old Livejournal graphics? It's silly and selfish, but I just had to draw this up...
nureinjoneric.png
nureinjoneric.png (399.2 KiB) Viewed 93 times
"Warren Zevon would be proud." -Reve Mosquito

Jon Eric - Get your feel on.
Website powered by Spud's Amazing Website Machine.

PLAY DISC! - A podcast of deep dives into full albums.
User avatar
Niveous
Ozzy
Posts: 6800
Joined: Mon Sep 27, 2004 6:45 am
Instruments: vocals, songwriting, guitar
Submitting as: Lucky Witch and the Righteous Ghost
Location: Jersey City, NJ
Contact:

Re: Nur Ein XV Final Round "Pistols At Dawn"

Post by Niveous »

The old graphics. It hurts my eyes. Oh, the humanity.
"I'd like to see 1984 redubbed with this in the soundtrack."- Furrypedro.
NUR EIN!
X-Tokyo
Lucky Witch and the Righteous Ghost
User avatar
crumpart
Mick
Posts: 562
Joined: Wed Aug 07, 2019 8:04 am
Instruments: Proficient??? Erm. Guitar, violin, recorder.
Submitting as: Hot Pink Halo
Pronouns: She/her
Location: Cork, Ireland
Contact:

Re: Nur Ein XV Final Round "Pistols At Dawn"

Post by crumpart »

Congratulations Jon Eric!
Devil’s got me Lindt! Devil’s got me Lindt!
User avatar
vowlvom
Lita
Posts: 794
Joined: Wed May 17, 2017 3:29 am
Instruments: guitar, keys, "other"
Recording Method: PC, reaper, ableton
Submitting as: Vowl Sounds, Vom Vorton
Pronouns: he/him
Contact:

Re: Nur Ein XV Final Round "Pistols At Dawn"

Post by vowlvom »

Congratulations Jon! Nur Ein!
mo
Lemmy
Posts: 275
Joined: Fri Oct 08, 2004 9:46 pm
Instruments: guitar, bass
Recording Method: behringer umc202hd, Bias FX, Reaper
Submitting as: duboce triangle
Location: hell a

Re: Nur Ein XV Final Round "Pistols At Dawn"

Post by mo »

Two acts enter. One act leaves. Congrats to both the finalists, and Jon Eric for a rarely precedented victory! (Unless my information is incorrect and no one has actually won Nur Ein without winning a round before the last one).

The Cavedwellers song was also fire, and Balance Lost, also a shout out for getting a fire lit under your butt the last few shadows, great stuff.
User avatar
ujnhunter
Stevie
Posts: 1537
Joined: Fri Mar 07, 2008 1:09 pm
Instruments: Bass, Keyboards, Crummy Guitar & Animal Noises (especially Donkeys)
Recording Method: Reaper 5.9x, Tascam FireOne/Behringer UMC202HD/Avid Eleven Rack/Line 6 UX2, Win 7 PC / Win 10 Laptop
Submitting as: Cock, Chth*.*, D.A.H. (Der Alter Hahn)
Pronouns: His Infernal Majesty
Location: CT, USA
Contact:

Re: Nur Ein XV Final Round "Pistols At Dawn"

Post by ujnhunter »

Congrats to Jon Eric. Congrats to Cavedwellers. And a great big shout out to all the Shadows! Everyone did a great job of keeping the songs coming this year. Great showing to all involved!
-Ujn Hunter
Photovoltaik - Free 6 Track EP - Song Fight! Liner Notes
Billy's Little Trip wrote:I must have this....in my mouth.....now.
Post Reply