No regerts (It Made Sense At The Time reviews)

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Lunkhead
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No regerts (It Made Sense At The Time reviews)

Post by Lunkhead »

We've all been there...
kaz
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Re: No regerts (It Made Sense At The Time reviews)

Post by kaz »

Holy cow this is a good fight! Reviews coming soon-ish.
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Re: No regerts (It Made Sense At The Time reviews)

Post by GravityJohnson »

Evenin' all. How are we?
Well, this is a damn fine fight! Very high quality indeed. Here are a few thoughts from me:

Tuners Union - This is bloody marvellous. I love it's sparseness, for me that's what makes it. Good choice of instrument sounds throughout and a really nice vocal sound. I usually try and give some kind of constructive feedback if I can, but I have nothing to give here really, you've simply nailed it. Great work. One of the best I've heard in my relatively short time on Songfight. Definite vote.

Squirrels in the attic - Pretty disjointed musically with the instruments not complementing each other too well for my ear. The vocal is pretty muffled and distant even for a live recording. Would be nice to hear a studio recorded version of this as underneath there is quite a pleasant song.

Macaque Attack - Another new genre for us. Bit of a protest song against the political rubbish spouted by our UK politicians during our Brexit vote. Yep, nothing new there you may say, but this was a new high-water mark. (For those not familiar with UK slang, 'diddle' means to rip-off or swindle, not sure if this word has the same meaning elsewhere in the world so I thought I'd mention it :) ).

The Tarantists - A very 'Where The Streets Have No Name' opening guitar...but then it changes. Very clean, slick recording. Some vocal compression or volume automation might have helped even out some of those peaks and troughs. The songs bursts to life at the 2:08 mark but then has less than a minute to run. I think it might have benefitted from getting to that point a little earlier. That said, this is really great, and I love the ending. Voteworthy.

Pepper Jane - Absolutely on form. I love this. Got a really nice bouncy, danceable quality to it too. My only criticism, and this is unnecessarily picky, is that the song title feels a little crow-barred in. This song is great as it is, but would also be great with some violin. Definite vote.

JSmitty - Very slick, very well recorded and produced. I feel that the first 100 seconds really build things up superbly, but just as I'm waiting for a major drop it falls right back and builds up again. I feel it never quite resolves. That said, this is excellent work, and the ending is superb. Another vote.

Paco del Stinko - Slightly thin sounding in the production, particularly in the drums, but with that minor criticism out the way, this is awesome. This is my favourite Paco tune of the last few weeks. I can't put my finger on why, but it reminds me a little of Patti Smith's 'Because The Night'. Plenty of votes to dispatch this week, another for this tune. Great work.

Vinegar Pie - Once again, another excellent tune. Has a slight feel of 'Dream Operator' by Talking Heads to me, there are few higher complements :) I like the separation of the instruments, much wider than would be normal, but it really works in this tune to give that kind of 'sang round a campfire' vibe. That chorus is a thing of beauty, I've been humming it for hours. Another definite vote.

Brilliant Songfighting this week one and all, probably the best collection of tracks I've heard on Songfight. For those going, have a damn fine time at Songfight! Live. We'll hopefully join you next year.
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Re: No regerts (It Made Sense At The Time reviews)

Post by kaz »

Reviews. This may be my favorite fight ever.

In random order:

Vinegar: The vocal tone/fx on the chorus ("the sun rises..") is excellent. And the tone of the solo starting at 0:48 fits perfectly, and it comes back right when it should. I also really like the subtle synth on the left. My only criticisms: 1, In a relatively short song, I heard the chorus three times. The chorus is nice, but I'd rather hear some unique bridge or something to break up the flow a little bit, especially towards the end. 2, some variation on your drum kit might help differentiate sections a bit, and could give you another control over the general feel. Overall though, this is great.

Macaque: Overall sound is great, and you've hit that sweet spot where the chord changes are unpredictable but also obvious in hindsight. I find that I'm losing some of the lyrics, but that might just be due to an English accent I'm not used to hearing. Also, thanks for the review and kind words. In the U.S., the only time I've heard the term "diddler" is in "kid diddler", meaning one who, um, "diddles" kids. It's not exactly a positive term, but in my experience the term itself is a bit uncommon.

Paco: Paco is always good. This is no exception. I have no criticisms or complaints. This stands on it's own, but I also hear They Might Be Giants, Final Fantasy scores, Red Hot Chili Peppers, and Weird Al. I hope you understand how this is a legitimate compliment.

Pepper: I love your lyrics. Your voice is lovely. And I like how the chord/key changes just jump out of nowhere. But, as much as I like those changes, it keeps about the same feel throughout the whole thing, and I want a little more variety. And there is some messiness around 1:10 which is a little jarring. So I like this, but.. there's something missing, but I'm not sure what it is. Sorry that's not helpful. I guess I'd say I find myself waiting for a big reveal where the song just opens up. That may be because the acoustic guitar sounds a little sparse in the bass end to me, so I'm expecting it to expand into something fuller. I don't know. Anyhow, generally this is quite good.

Smitty: These chord progressions are solid and make the song for me. Seriously. Lyrically, I like most of it, but some of these lines (which are pretty damn funny) don't really match the epic-ness of the music (for example "wore the ass like a feedbag"). In any case it sounds great, and I like listening to it.

Tarantists: This is really fun. I want to feel the bass in the beginning a little more.. the line is exactly what it needs to be, but given the quality I want it to stand out a little more. I'd like to hear more of the higher end of the bass, more funk to it, I guess. On another note, the sparse breakdown (around 2:00) goes in the opposite direction I want. You've got this great energy throughout the song that feels like it's building up to something but instead it diminishes. Anyhow, I nit pick because I care, and care means love, and I love this.

Squirrels: Musically, structurally, lyrically, I really like this, but you gotta clean up these vocals. There's just this muddiness that is getting in the way. And at times, it seems like different tracks are off beat. At 1:10 it sounds like you're trying to go in two different directions. I guess I'd make a long story short by saying that this could be really fantastic if it were as crisp as it could be.
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Re: No regerts (It Made Sense At The Time reviews)

Post by AJOwens »

kaz wrote:Squirrels: Musically, structurally, lyrically, I really like this, but you gotta clean up these vocals. There's just this muddiness that is getting in the way. And at times, it seems like different tracks are off beat. At 1:10 it sounds like you're trying to go in two different directions. I guess I'd make a long story short by saying that this could be really fantastic if it were as crisp as it could be.
This seems like as good a time as any to post the other mix (attached). But it's still a mess.

For more information, see the prefight thread. [Being a technical writer has ruined me.]
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Re: No regerts (It Made Sense At The Time reviews)

Post by secretspiral »

JSmitty ::: some pretty cool synth sounds. crisp sounding. "you thought I made sense but you just made sense at the time" is a nice line.

Macaque Attack ::: I like the melody - makes me want to sing along - and there's some nice lyrics in there too. the mix seems a bit messy, could be clearer/cleaner.

Paco ::: I like vocal harmonies quite a lot. The bass/drums sound real good too.

Pepper Jane ::: Very simple recording but it's quite charming. The repeating bit is catchy.

Squirrels ::: This sounds like it has some potential but it's also very loose/disjointed; in a way that almost sounds on purpose, but not quite. Still there are some elements to this that I really like. Like it could be a really cool psychedelic 60s style track if it were a bit tighter.

The Tarantists ::: This one is maybe my favorite of the week. Just so many cool musical bits here. I really like the intro. Surprising left turns from section to section but they make sense at time *rimshot*

Tuners Union ::: My other favorite. Really excellent. Sounds fully realized to me, I don't really have any constructive criticism. Really love the sound you're getting on your vocals. If I had to stretch for constructive criticism it'd be that the acoustic guitar sound could maybe be ... better. But I can't get my acoustic guitar sound the way I want it either.

Vinegar Pie ::: My track. Some experimenting with extreme left/right separation. Was even more extreme but I dialed it back a bit. Some things about it weren't right but ran out of time.

My votes are for The Tarantists & Tuners Union. But I liked something about all of the tracks.
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Re: No regerts (It Made Sense At The Time reviews)

Post by kaz »

secretspiral wrote:... the acoustic guitar sound could maybe be ... better.
I agree. I did this with a Martin Traveler, which I usually like because it has a real nice throaty tone, if thin. But I also double mic'ed it, with a condenser down by the sound hole and a dynamic aimed up close to the fretboard. The intention was to capture fret noise and pan it left, and capture the meaty sound and pan it right. Problem is, there isn't much movement in this song so fret noise is minimal. So yeah, it falls a little flat for me too.
AJOwens wrote:For more information, see the prefight thread. [Being a technical writer has ruined me.]
I feel your pain. Seriously. Your experience is mine exactly. This is why I've stopped trying to work with anybody, which seems sad but I think is actually just poor luck. Anyhow, your new mix is an improvement, but in line with your own comments you've addressed the symptoms, not the root cause. Also, I don't know what 'twigged' means.
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Re: No regerts (It Made Sense At The Time reviews)

Post by AJOwens »

kaz wrote:
AJOwens wrote:For more information, see the prefight thread. [Being a technical writer has ruined me.]
. . Also, I don't know what 'twigged' means.
It's a British expression meaning "figured it out" or "finally got it." My parents were British, and some of their slang stuck with me.
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Re: No regerts (It Made Sense At The Time reviews)

Post by RedSkyHawk »

Hi All. I’m the half in The Tarantists that sings and works the quantize button in the DAW. Most of the songs in this fight are remarkably good.

Macaque Attack - A very commanding "Sea Song" type affair. The emphasis in the low mids and that really wide and bouncy ambiance make it even more epic. The sea is raging and the bottles are rolling on the deck. I did pick up on the theme there which matches the style very well. Great job.

Turners Union - The sailors have landed. They now roam the land and sing in perfect harmony around a camp fire at night. Nice Harmonica. This is very evocative. Very nice guitar instrumental line. The westerners are so skillful, they vanish in a perfect fade out. Very well done.

JSmitty - An Original mix of rap with elements of trance. The harmony is much more elaborate than I recall this type of song bargaining for. Nice dynamics and build up. The looseness in the title line first gave me pause but when it comes around the same way the second times through I am not so taken aback. It grows on you. Very well put together.

Paco Del Stinko - Having now listened to several of your numerous past entries I am quite impressed with your ability to bring forth what sounds like fully rehearsed, live recorded creations in the short time we all get to submit. You guys learn songs fast! Are these tracks single take recordings? This week’s entry has it all as well. Fully fleshed out form, the wall of sound, and background vocals. Very Impressive.

Pepper Jane - It's not fair. I want that cute voice too. Then I wouldn’t have to figure out that complicated piece of software. But I suppose there is more to that deceptively simple song of yours. It cadences just the right amount not to be in the way of your “complainte”. 1:14. The weels fall off. But is that a smile I hear? I can't tell. Maybe it’s all just a ploy to keep us in check.

Vinegar Pie - A nice brooding little song. I find the upper vocal line in the pre-chorus to be the more memorable thing about it.

Squirrels in The Attic - I agree with the other reviewers, there is a good idea in there, but the flaws in the production makes it hard to hang on.

The Tarantists - Thanks all for the great feedback. There was almost not enough time to do anything. But then an idea came up for a chorus. Et Voilà.
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Re: No regerts (It Made Sense At The Time reviews)

Post by JSmitty »

squirrels in the attic Vocals ruin this song for me. There is a good song some where in here but its lost in sloppy rhythm and poor vocals. I wish I had the drugs that made this make sense at the time NO VOTE

Tarantists This is pretty cool. The production is awesome. Very well put together and I love the vocal harmonies. The Synth kinda gets a little weird but still a good jam. VOTE

Paco Del Stinko This is fun. Good tone. I love the Punk rock style bass. Cool changes throughout the song. VOTE

Vinegar Pie This song has a cool tone but the metronome sounding rim shot gets old fast. I really like the guitar solo. The production is a little rough but not bad. VOTE

JSMitty This is my first solo submission to SF. Previously I've posted music with N.M.D.T. Schizophonics and JRS2. This track was fun to make hope you enjoy.

Tuners Union The opening riff for this is very catchy. Guitar solo is awesome. Production is great. This is probably my favorite from this round. Great stuff!!!!! VOTE

Pepper Jane Normally I love the songs Ive heard you post. This one was not my favorite. The vocals seem forced and therefore lack depth and soul. This one is not bad but its not blowing up my skirt. NO VOTE

Macaque Attack There is a really cool song here but it is buried under overbearing bass tones. Because most of the music posted on here is not my normal style production plays a big part in how I perceive a song. The slide guitar at the end is really awesome. and as the song goes on I start to really like it. VOTE (but please mix the bass)

There were a lot of great entries this round. As a Hip Hop guy I don't expect a lot of votes from everyone but I really like the constructive feedback I've received and after writing so many songs its nice to be feed song titles from Song FIght.
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Re: No regerts (It Made Sense At The Time reviews)

Post by Paco Del Stinko »

JSmitty - Excellent delivery and some clever/tricky wordplay. There are times when I want to hear double time machine gun vocal line rattle by, just to, oh, plow me over or something. Nice backing tracks and I wonder if the vocals were double tracked or copied and nudged?

Macaque Attack - Yeah, you guys can really mix it up. I'm always impressed and this is no exception. What's that Irish "diddle aye ay" stuff called? Love it here. I like the 60s/70s verby vibe that this gives, yet it still has a soaring feel to it. Slightly dark, yet optimistic.

Paco del Stinko
- Trying to get some more keys in my songs, simplistic as they may be. Heh. Both keys and songs, I suppose!

Pepper Jane
- Sounds like busker music. Or perhaps isolative hippy co-ed. Neither remark a slam, by the way. Wanders a bit but I reckon that this whole Song Fight thing is great exercise for you and your considerable talents. Anyway, I get drawn into this as it goes when you find the right wave to surf.

Squirrels in the attic - Yeah, this misses the mark, but I get where it wants to go. Still manages to capture a heady, river flowing vibe. Might be nice if you all jam again, maybe run through things a couple times to get them tighter, but not so many times you strip the feel out. You know what I'm sayin', I know you do!

The Tarantists - This grabs you right away, although those keys are a bit bold at the start. Much better when the sly groove takes over. Bold and confident without being arrogant. Super vocal work and interesting synth work. Chorus is good and provides for a strange singalong. Excellent.

Tuners Union - Always glad to see you show up. Those progressions slay me, bittersweet, I could listen to them over and over all day. Excellent vocal work, of course, harmonies all tasty. Lyrics well done and contemplative. This is both a winner and a keeper for sure, I get bummed out when the song ends, cos it ends.

Vinegar Pie
- Nice. Has a bit of a Barret era Floyd here, minus some psychedelic flourishes. Less kooky. This has a bittersweet feel to it, like others in the fight. Subject points you that way, I guess. Harmony work is easy going and well done, tasty complements via guitar and keys. I picture listening to this in an outdoor setting, white lights in green trees, night time.
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Re: No regerts (It Made Sense At The Time reviews)

Post by Paco Del Stinko »

RedSkyHawk wrote:You guys learn songs fast! Are these tracks single take recordings?
Sorry it's just me by myself. Thanks for the kind words though!

And, thanks to all for commenting this week. Short, but tasty fight.
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Re: No regerts (It Made Sense At The Time reviews)

Post by JSmitty »

Paco Del Stinko wrote:JSmitty - Excellent delivery and some clever/tricky wordplay. There are times when I want to hear double time machine gun vocal line rattle by, just to, oh, plow me over or something. Nice backing tracks and I wonder if the vocals were double tracked or copied and nudged?
Doubled but I also put a little chorus effect on my voice
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Re: No regerts (It Made Sense At The Time reviews)

Post by ElaineDiMasi »

Vinegar Pie - Beck vocals feel good. Overall not the most challenging of the songs.

Pepper Jane - Repetition is working and hook line placed well.

Squirrels in the attic - I'm such a sucker for beatles-drunk-on-nectar guitar shit like this. Your vocal tune is pleasing as well. Download.

The Tarantists - First impression after the opening, that the lyric phrasing was going to be too ordinary and make the whole song predictable but THAT was over fast, I loved the transition after the opening part. Song surprised me a few more times, like the structure of the song all around. Still don't entirely love every moment of the vocal phrasing. Best in the fight. VOTE.

Paco del Stinko - Always great to come here for your fresh breath of 80's air! :-)

Macaque Attack - Yep, songs about political gaslighting are always timely but this time especially so.

JSmitty - Liking the synth in the opening and the build. A Linkin Park style counter vocal could sound quite good here.. this base is big enough to support that.

Tuners Union - This is put together well. Download.

Hey, since when I have to vote for more than one?!
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