Nur Ein XVII: Round Two "Floating In the Water"

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Re: Nur Ein XVII: Round Two "Floating In the Water"

Post by gizo »

mholland wrote:
Sun Jun 05, 2022 7:54 pm
Night Sky is out. We didn’t manage to come up with anything I could turn into a song.
Such as shame :(

but... clouds & silver linings... does this mean you're a sax-worker for hire for the duration of Nur Ein?
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Re: Nur Ein XVII: Round Two "Floating In the Water"

Post by mholland »

gizo wrote:
Sun Jun 05, 2022 8:27 pm
mholland wrote:
Sun Jun 05, 2022 7:54 pm
Night Sky is out. We didn’t manage to come up with anything I could turn into a song.
Such as shame :(

but... clouds & silver linings... does this mean you're a sax-worker for hire for the duration of Nur Ein?
Solos or sectionals?
Night Sky is Sally on lyrics, Steve on drums, and Matt on the other stuff
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Re: Nur Ein XVII: Round Two "Floating In the Water"

Post by Future Boy »

Elks of the Economy are in with a tragic tale.
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Re: Nur Ein XVII: Round Two "Floating In the Water"

Post by JonPorobil »

Pretty sure I'm in. Apologies to Niveous or whomever is checking the email, because I sent two files within a minute of each other, both just BARELY under the deadline. The first was an empty mp3 file, thanks to an annoying glitch in my DAW. The other is my entry, in relatively polished condition.

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Re: Nur Ein XVII: Round Two "Floating In the Water"

Post by arby »

mholland wrote:
Sun Jun 05, 2022 7:54 pm
Night Sky is out. We didn’t manage to come up with anything I could turn into a song.
Aw man, sorry to hear that Night Sky. You will be missed.

Well, I decided to throw out all my previous recordings and redo from scratch at 11 pm, now featuring Nivs on guitar and the S-Drum drum pedal on drums. THere's no Omni on this at all!!! :o :o :o Quick and dirty recording and mixing etc, and yes the arrangement is very bare-bones, but tbh I like it much better than the version I was struggling with all day. My version was so out of time that he couldn't play over it. And I feel like for the most part I sang it much better. So yay! I no longer hate my song. Huzzah. Bless my wonderful husband.
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Re: Nur Ein XVII: Round Two "Floating In the Water"

Post by noma »

Barely in. Last week, I wanted to add keyboards but was running out of time. This week, I got piano but no guitars (except bass)... I thought it kind of sounded like something else but I don't know what. If you hear any similarity to anything, let me know. Hope you like it!
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Re: Nur Ein XVII: Round Two "Floating In the Water"

Post by JonPorobil »

I'm sorry to see Night Sky drop out. Your first couple of songs this year showed a ton of improvement and promise, and I had been looking forward to seeing what you did next.

On a first listen, Elks of the Economy are a clear favorite. I also loved Stacking Theory. The "solved it!" award (my favorite implementation of the title/challenge) goes to Nick Soma.

I also really liked Lunkhead, The Lowest Bitter, and Vom Vorton. Overall, it's a REALLY strong round and you should all be proud.

I'll try to post full reviews this week, but no promises. There's no denying that this batch of songs has a lot to write about! It was an exceptionally interesting title-and-challenge combination, and I loved hearing all the different directions people took it. (Not to mention gratified that no one else used the same approach as I did.) What an enormous amount of creativity on display!

About my song, I'll say only a couple of things. First of all, in case you find my lyrics confusing, I posted a bit of a "cheat sheet" under the spoiler tag in my lyrics post. I recommend giving it a try without the cheat sheet first. My intention was for the listener not to worry about trying to piece each line together, but to let the timelines just sort of wash over you. But I go into detail on everything in that post, if you feel you need it.

Secondly, in what I hope is a less-extreme version of last week, there's a band who heavily inspired the musical style of my entry, and I'm curious whether anyone will notice and identify the influence. This time, it wasn't one of the biggest hits by one of the top 10 rock bands ever, so perhaps there's safety in having obscure favorites? :lol: It's not nearly as derivative as my "Deified" was of The Who, but I get the sense it's still identifiable if you happen to be familiar with the group that inspired me.

Anyway, I'm looking forward to the reviews, and I'll see most of you in the next round!

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Re: Nur Ein XVII: Round Two "Floating In the Water"

Post by lichenthroat »

I submitted a shadow song, but it does not appear to be posted.
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Re: Nur Ein XVII: Round Two "Floating In the Water"

Post by arby »

lichenthroat wrote:
Mon Jun 06, 2022 7:17 am
I submitted a shadow song, but it does not appear to be posted.
Nivs says he can't do anything about it while he's at work but will upload it when he gets home.
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Re: Nur Ein XVII: Round Two "Floating In the Water"

Post by Niveous »

Fixed.
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Re: Nur Ein XVII: Round Two "Floating In the Water"

Post by Future Boy »

Here are some off-the-cuff reviews:

Adam Adamant - love the synths. vocal delivery reminds me of Figurine. wish the vocals were a bit cleaner and more upfront with more aggressive autotune.

The Alleviators - so chill, so relaxing. i like the vibe and the washy reverb. doubled vocals is great, might be nice to have a couple moments of harmony (if they were there I've forgotten them already). would like the vocals a little more forward in the mix, but otherwise the mix sounds great.

Berkeley Social Scene - lyrics on this are great. production is tight, y'all know what you are doing. seems like a perfectly cromulent pop-punk song, which is not a genre I'm super fond of, so I don't have much of an emotional response to it. i'm like yeah i can bop my head to this, but that's about it. nothing surprises me about this.

Boffo Yux Dudes - it's kind of plodding and i think needs more instrumental breaks. the words just keep going and going and going. this might work OK if it was a bit faster and had more driving drums. the bom-bom-bom section is cool and a nice change. don't like the shaker sound / how it is mixed, sounds out of place. vocal harmonies on the chorus at the end help a lot.

Cavedwellers - lead vocal delivery / processing is great, but the mandolin is fighting with it. not so sure the heavily flanged guitar part is working here - it might need to be wider or something so it feels like it's hugging the center of the mix. am wanting a synth line of some kind during the chorus. also wanting punchier bass and more defined kick drum.

Elks of the Economy - i'm really happy with how this mix came out although it sounds like i could have mastered it a bit louder compared to everything that's played so far. i miss the days when my voice didn't get worn out so quickly. props to my bandmates for great performances and mix direction.

Glennny - the effect on the vocal is too extreme, makes it really hard for me to understand the words. guitars sound great but are probably too loud. drums are almost not there, which i don't understand, but my reference point for drums is electronic music, so.

Jon Porobil - this is really fun, appreciate the energy you bring to the vocals. i really liked the alternate lyrics in the reverb thing you mention in the lyrics thread, but I can't hear that *at all* when listening to the song. i'd love to see something done that actually surfaces that material.

The Lowest Bitter - some of the auto-tuning is awkward and distracting. the abrupt ending works really well.

Lunkhead - it's such a pleasant little romp and your voice is so angelic on this one. nice job making little changes in the arrangement for each section. you are a talented fellow.

Mandibles - vocals sounding very muffled. i'm not sure what's going on with the drums but they sound like they were made for a totally different song and don't even seem to be in sync with the guitars and vocals? the drums are low key ruining the song. soprano sounding beautiful up in here. pick noise on strummed guitar during that part is really distracting. there is a good song in here, obscured by some of the arrangement / mixing choices.

Nick Soma - appreciate the simplicity of this arrangement and your vocal carries it well. i want the left hand of the piano part to be some kind of electric piano / synth thing and the right hand as-is. also finding dead-center piano at the volume it's at distracts from the vocal because the left hand is in a similar range as the vocal. it's like, the bassline doesn't need to have that much emphasis. well done otherwise.

Stacking Theory - lead vocal seems to be off to the left a bit, which is strange. oh then it goes center when the distorted guitar comes in. you're making the lo-fi / phasing effect on the vocals work. love the chill drums, they sit really well in the mix. it's a good vibe.

Virgo Power - powerful vocal delivery really sells the song. thought maybe the vocals were too loud at first, but nope it works. like how stripped down this is.

Vom Vorton - i think the approach to the lyrical challenge is great. finding the fills between verse and chorus rather awkward. lovely synths and cool idea to save them for the contemporary narrative. Oh and I see you saving that V after the ii until the end of the song, clever. catchy tune, well done.
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Re: Nur Ein XVII: Round Two "Floating In the Water"

Post by gizo »

Future Boy wrote:
Mon Jun 06, 2022 4:18 pm
Stacking Theory - lead vocal seems to be off to the left a bit, which is strange. oh then it goes center when the distorted guitar comes in. you're making the lo-fi / phasing effect on the vocals work. love the chill drums, they sit really well in the mix. it's a good vibe.
Thanks for the feedback!
I had this idea that I'd pan the vocals left and right to represent the two narratives. It probably wasn't necessary or useful.
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Re: Nur Ein XVII: Round Two "Floating In the Water"

Post by JonPorobil »

Future Boy wrote:
Mon Jun 06, 2022 4:18 pm
Jon Porobil - this is really fun, appreciate the energy you bring to the vocals. i really liked the alternate lyrics in the reverb thing you mention in the lyrics thread, but I can't hear that *at all* when listening to the song. i'd love to see something done that actually surfaces that material.
Thanks for the review! I agree, the reverb trick didn't come out anywhere near as obvious as I'd hoped. At best there's just a little tension arising from hearing faint echoes of consonants that weren't in the lead vocal... if you notice anything at all. By the time I realized it wasn't working, I'd already put in the work of recording the alternative vocal part and I was in the last hour before the deadline, so I decided to go with "minimum viable product" on that little touch, and post about it in the lyrics thread. I'm thinking maybe for the edit I'll try using a slightly clearer sounding reverb, but stacking it on a delay send? It's tempting to mess with it right now, but I have to work on my "Can't Let It Go."
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Re: Nur Ein XVII: Round Two "Floating In the Water"

Post by Future Boy »

JonPorobil wrote:
Mon Jun 06, 2022 4:34 pm
I'm thinking maybe for the edit I'll try using a slightly clearer sounding reverb, but stacking it on a delay send?
Yeah I thought maybe having them on a delay might work, like how you did during the chorus (I think).
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Re: Nur Ein XVII: Round Two "Floating In the Water"

Post by arby »

we're at the listening party and I'm struck by how many more words everyone else has than me. Nivs says not to worry about that. :?
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Re: Nur Ein XVII: Round Two "Floating In the Water"

Post by gizo »

arby wrote:
Mon Jun 06, 2022 6:55 pm
we're at the listening party and I'm struck by how many more words everyone else has than me. Nivs says not to worry about that. :?
Don't worry about it! I'm fairly sparing with my words also. Just as long as you choose the right ones, and put them in the right spots.
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Re: Nur Ein XVII: Round Two "Floating In the Water"

Post by vowlvom »

Future Boy wrote:
Mon Jun 06, 2022 4:18 pm
Vom Vorton - i think the approach to the lyrical challenge is great. finding the fills between verse and chorus rather awkward. lovely synths and cool idea to save them for the contemporary narrative. Oh and I see you saving that V after the ii until the end of the song, clever. catchy tune, well done.
Cheers! These Nur Ein songs are the first three songs I've ever drummed on, still finding my way a little especially when it comes to fills. Pleased to hear the lyrics hit the spot for you!
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Re: Nur Ein XVII: Round Two "Floating In the Water"

Post by Lunkhead »

I saw a question about challenge fulfillment in my song on the listening party. I just want to say that I read the challenge as worded and made a good faith effort to fulfill it as I understood it. If there were implicit expectations not conveyed in the words, I did not ignore them, I just didn't pick up on them.
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Re: Nur Ein XVII: Round Two "Floating In the Water"

Post by glennny »

Are we ever going to get to hear the fixed version of the Mandibles song? The off sync drums are clearly a mistake. Is the fixed version posted on Soundcloud or something?
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Re: Nur Ein XVII: Round Two "Floating In the Water"

Post by crumpart »

Lunkhead wrote:
Tue Jun 07, 2022 7:43 am
I saw a question about challenge fulfillment in my song on the listening party. I just want to say that I read the challenge as worded and made a good faith effort to fulfill it as I understood it. If there were implicit expectations not conveyed in the words, I did not ignore them, I just didn't pick up on them.
Before I forget to say it, I really enjoyed your song this round Sam. Definitely need to go and listen to them all again.
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Re: Nur Ein XVII: Round Two "Floating In the Water"

Post by BoffoYux »

Lunkhead wrote:
Tue Jun 07, 2022 7:43 am
I saw a question about challenge fulfillment in my song on the listening party. I just want to say that I read the challenge as worded and made a good faith effort to fulfill it as I understood it. If there were implicit expectations not conveyed in the words, I did not ignore them, I just didn't pick up on them.
I thought you hit all the right notes - the challenge just said 'Incorporate at least two different narratives from at least 500 years apart'.

You had two different lovers in that time span, so 2 narratives. Fit for me. Also loved the tune!
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Re: Nur Ein XVII: Round Two "Floating In the Water"

Post by glennny »

Floating in the Water

Adam Adamant- The more you sound like Figurine the more I love it. The 1st chorus sounds like the future female robot melody is stepping on the protagonist. Maybe stereo separation or just syncing tighter would fix it. It doesn’t bother me in the 2nd and 3rd chorus. This is a cool song. Good job!

The Alleviators
- You have such governed dynamics! Who is the other half? This collab is sweet! There’s a bit of Appleseed Cast here again. Did I say that to you a while ago? (They’re opening for Sunny Day Real Estate in December!) I love the aesthetics of this song. I wish the chorus melody had more of a hook. Vocals are pretty throughout. Production is sweet! The concept is good. Cool song!

Berkeley Social Scene- This is one of my projects. This round Ken took production duties (that’s why it sounds amazing). Ken wrote the song. We got Geech on vocals, glennny on rhythm guitar and solo, and Sam on rhythm guitar and bass. Ken did the drums and keys. This song is very fun to play. I love it!

Boffo Yux Dudes- I dig the Beach Boys time travel bridge especially. Cool concept. In general, I find the bpm a bit slow for my tastes. Ends with a wimper, not so much a bang. The narratives are solid. Good stuff!

Cavedwellers- Another one of my projects. Truth wrote the lyrics to this one. I wrote the music whilst staring at the lyrics which came first this time. I’m playing all of the instruments. Truth is doing all vocals. It’s a little strange instrumentation: Drums, Bass, Mandolin, Ricky 12. Solo is 335. Hmm, solo sounds too loud on this system. Sorry. Anyway, I love this song. It’s amazing the vast improvement that happens comparing my vocals to when Truth replaces them. I’m sure you can imagine.

Elks of the Economy- Future Boy and Friends. This has loads of Future Boy greatness going on. No offense to the other Song Fight Titans in this supergroup, but this one sounds very Future Boy! This is awesome! One of my favorites of the round for sure! Sweet jazz chords! Awwww no real solo? Booo! That sweet guitar tone was such a tease. Come on! 8 bars? Nearly perfect song, minus points for no real solo. Sweet JB and FB vocals!

glennny- This is my other entry. This one is all me. I spent so much time trying to widdle down the Wife of Bath’s Tale (Canterbury Tales) to 2 stanzas. So I sacrificed much of the story and just focused on a couple of points. The 2nd narrative is about Louis CK. (pretty obvious, I think). This song was my 1st instinct. Anyway, I had so much fun making it. I hope the listen is enjoyable for you.

Jon Porobil- There’s something very Billy Joel about this. Not a lift like the last entry, but it sounds like a Billy Joel rocker to me. This is fun. Nice dynamics. Fun song!

Lowest Bitter- Cool groove. Super short song. It’s to the point. Good concept. I wish the 2nd verse varied more from the first. It’s so short it feels like an interstitial song on a concept album. I dig it. Nice job!

Lunkhead- Great concept! I know you were tempted to go full Dracula voice. It would have taken it over to Novelty, but I think it would have been hilarious. This is solid. Great even. Sweet Jimmy Buffet vampire rock!

Mandibles- WTF! What is going on with those drums!?! They are unnecessary and very distracting. This could stand on the rhythm of the acoustic guitars. Was something not muted before submission? This is a beautiful folk song, stuck next to drum practice the room over. I don’t see lyrics yet.

Nick Soma- I love the story. I love the lyrics. This reminds me of Tim DeLaughter (Polyphonic Spree)-You’ll Be Fine. (Theme to United States of Tara). I guess there are hundreds of descending basslines with piano accompaniment. The mix is solid! Vocals are great! Perhaps I wish there was an intensity shift in the chorus or something. Great song!

Stacking Theory- Great dynamics. From whispers to yelling. I love the quiet bits. The loud bits work for contrast but aren’t as strong. This song is great. Good concept. Well done!

Virgo Power- A grungy dinosaur feet rocker. There seems to be a severe lack of grungy sludgy guitar. 94bpm means that there are only 72 measures, in this 3:02 song. The song feels short because you want (I want anyway) 96 measures of song no matter the bpm. Despite that, I dig this. I want to play guitar over this. Cool song! (Yeah, I know the Lowest Bitter is way shorter at nearly the same bpm)

Vom Vorton- Nice! I considered acoustic for my 13th century bit and Electric for my modern bit, I didn’t land on it. This works well for you here. This song suffers a bit from the folk dilemma to me. It feels like all music is a slave to the storytelling. There are not as many pop nuggets and hooks as most Vom Vorton songs. You’re competing against yourself here. This is top-notch, but just a solid entry for a VV song. Great production! Nice job!

Lichen Throat- I love the lyrics. It’s always metal! Strange ending. It seems like it really wanted an extensive ending guitar solo with much tapping. This is weird in the best way. This is clearly lyrics trying to cram into music. The music and the lyrics don’t give with each other. They’re both stubborn and ultimately sound like they’re fighting. Anyway, this has its charms and I enjoy it!

Great round everyone! Tough challenge, well handled!
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