Don't forget the torches (Pitchfork Nation Reviews)

Discuss upcoming, current, and previous song fights.
Post Reply
User avatar
Chumpy
Twilight Sparkle
Posts: 661
Joined: Sat Apr 18, 2015 2:06 pm
Instruments: Vocals, guitar, bass
Recording Method: Logic
Submitting as: Jerkatorium, Chumpy
Pronouns: he/him
Location: Seattle, WA
Contact:

Don't forget the torches (Pitchfork Nation Reviews)

Post by Chumpy »

Ok folks, let's keep these reviews angry and unfocused. Leave no witches unburned.
"... unbearable, badly sung jangle-jangle. Everyone who has ever voted for Jerkatorium anywhere - your just rewards." --j$
User avatar
Lunkhead
Beat It
Posts: 7262
Joined: Sat Sep 25, 2004 12:14 pm
Instruments: many
Recording Method: cubase/mac/tascam4x4
Submitting as: Berkeley Social Scene, Merisan, Tiny Robots
Pronouns: he/him
Location: Berkeley, CA
Contact:

Re: Don't forget the torches (Pitchfork Nation Reviews)

Post by Lunkhead »

Have at it!
User avatar
Andy Balham
Push Comes to Shove
Posts: 263
Joined: Mon Sep 27, 2004 2:18 pm
Instruments: Guitar, bass, ukulele and drums
Recording Method: Reaper, Guitar Rig LE, Edirol FA-66
Submitting as: Andy Balham, Bobby Davros, The Masters of Grip, MC Heapey
Location: Somewheresville, Englandshire
Contact:

Re: Don't forget the torches (Pitchfork Nation Reviews)

Post by Andy Balham »

OK. Let's get on with the proclamations of the Balham jury...

Berkeley Social Scene
I like the phrase 'witch-burning season'. An interesting lyric and enough in the music to keep me interested there as well.

Dirge
There are shades of The Pixies in this. Another interesting lyric and enjoyable listen.

Flaming Tiger
A change of pace here. The overall sound and the delivery match well, but despite a couple of listens I couldn't quite make out what it was all about.

Glenn Case
The general jolliness of the music seems a bit at odds with the lyrics. The chorus is catchy though and it is not often the word 'disembark' makes it into one. Impressive to record claps that don't sound like someone's arse/ass being slapped.

Lichen Throat
There's just about enough going on musically to keep my attention here and the lyric is well thought out too. A welcome bit of variety as well.

Micah Sommersmith
All very well produced and a well-crafted lyric too with some nice phrases in there. I also learnt about pitchfork.com, so I am a wiser man for listening too.

Paco del Stinko
Great dark sound to this and a strong riff underpinning it. The lyric rings a bell with me as well. Some nice sounds going on in the background on the breakdown too.

The Pannacotta Army
I like the harmonica-like sound going on in the background. Yet another genuinely interesting and - I suspect - hearfelt lyric. I guess something about the title brought that out, rather than something a little more throwaway. More listening pleasure.

Pepper Jane
A more intimate feel to this. The two voices add a layer of extra interest to the sparse instrumentation. I like the variation in the delivery, sometimes sung and sometimes spoken. Again, it adds interest for me. Nice job.

Squirrels in the attic
A little ramshackle in feel, but quite charming because of it. A pleasant end to my first set of Songfight reviews in many years.

Nice fight all.
"Some may say I couldn't sing, but none may say I didn't sing" - Florence Foster Jenkins
User avatar
dirgetheband
Somebody Get Me A Doctor
Posts: 115
Joined: Tue Nov 04, 2008 9:52 pm
Instruments: Guitar, Bass
Recording Method: Pro Tools 8 M-Powered, Dell XPS 630, M-Audio Delta 66/44, Tascam 488 & 424, NCH WavePad
Submitting as: Dirge
Location: St. Louis MO
Contact:

Re: Don't forget the torches (Pitchfork Nation Reviews)

Post by dirgetheband »

Andy Balham - I really like the keys churning over the song, especially the choruses. It seems like you lose the beat at times, but then I actually count "one-two-one-two" and sure enough, it stays on time. So I guess the drums fills just seem awkward and really detract from the drive of the song.

Berkeley Social Scene - Nice Iron Maiden riff during the chorus. Typically strong song from you guys. The bass seems to be missing from the mix; anyone listening to ...And Justice For All right now? Where's the beef... I mean bass?

Dirge - I wasn't even sure I was going to do this until about 9PM the night before it was due. Got the baby to bed, moved the 4 track and preamp to a downstairs room, wrote the lyrics; hit record. A coworker (who also mentioned a "Pixies-thing") mentioned it sounds like my voice, finally. I'd have to agree a little bit; I just don't know how this voice would translate over to my rockier songs, of which most of my songs are. There's a little too much reverb on everything, but I guess that's what you get when you write, record, and mix in about 2 hours.

Flaming Tiger - I love this. I wish the guitar tone were more distorted and generally BIGGER. But all in all, this is a badass tune. At half-time it'd probably be stoner rock. I honestly wish it were longer and more fleshed out, but that's my only complaint. Vocal delivery is spot on. VOTE

Glenn Case - Listening in the car the first time this was my clear cut favorite. Clever lyrics, really nice instrumentation with the smooth mixture of acoustic and electric guitars and keyboards. Really nice song craft here; everything has its own space in the tune. VOTE

Lichen Throat - I like the keys. They are really dark and foreboding but unfortunately, seem to be in direct competition with your vocals. It's like there can only be one baritone in the song, I guess. The song structure is really unique. Needs a better vocal performance to really stand out.

Micah Sommersmith - I loved the lyrics from the archive. I think you could have used a little more dynamics in the production; I felt like the chorus should have blown up my speakers but it really didn't. Still, I love the performances and instrumentation. VOTE

Paco del Stinko - I would have loved to hear Paco perform the Sommersmith song - now THAT would have been something. Typically awesome Paco tune here. What's there to say? Nice work, man. Didn't see the bridge coming at 1:25. That swirly guitar is a little bit of a different sound for you. Nice choice. My only gripe is that somehow this doesn't sound "dark" enough. Not sure what I would have liked to hear instead... Have I ever mentioned how much I like your bass tone? LOLZ! VOTE

The Pannacotta Army - The opening chords had me thinking of that songs that sells scotch or something on the TV. Love the lyrics; very cool take on the title. I firmly believe that PC culture is really crippling discourse in this nation (as well as the obvious overreaction backlash to PC culture). It seems like a lot of people just can't talk to each other without either becoming hurt and defensive or overly aggressive and attacking. Ugh. Love this song. I think this might be my favorite of all your tunes over the years. Nice work. VOTE

Pepper Jane - I don't like the stacked vocal lines; that filtered/spoken lyric just distracts from the sung performance. I know there's a definitive reason for it being there; I just don't like it and find it unnecessary. I'd be curious to hear how the tune sounds without. Nice guitar performance, maybe the best one I've heard from you. Again, typically strong entry from PJ.

Squirrels in the Attic - I kept waiting for this song to speed up and rock out. But no, rock denied. I just feel like this is very unfocused; nearly unlistenable. I guess that might be kind of the point, you know, the narrator is crazy so write a crazy song. Maybe this is a cool hidden track on a album about governmental waste.
DT
User avatar
Paco Del Stinko
Hot for Teacher
Posts: 3357
Joined: Fri Apr 07, 2006 11:20 am
Instruments: Basic rock, at a basic level.
Recording Method: Roland 2480
Submitting as: Paco del Stinko
Location: Massachusetts. God save the Commonwealth!

Re: Don't forget the torches (Pitchfork Nation Reviews)

Post by Paco Del Stinko »

Andy Balham - This could have fit nicely in Urgh! A Music War. A couple BPM faster might have provided an edgier feel to give the vocals a more energetic platform to be spat out. The organ during the chorus is a nice touch. Take on the president elect of the U.S. next, please.

Berkeley Social Scene - I'm a big Martin fan, but he (you) sounds under-rehearsed here, lacking some energy or confidence as a result. Nice riffing and tight playing, good guitar tones too, but the song feels a little forced or something. Hard to explain, but maybe it's just the wrong tune for the lyrics or something.

Dirge
- Very pleasant and hooky progression. Waving the lighter over your head vibe. This works fine as it is although as full band it would kick ass too. Stereotypical band comes in at point X. I think I'd rather hear it with either solo voice or tightened double tracking.

Flaming Tiger - Kick ass. I needed to read the lyrics and thanks for posting, they are good and fun. Love the progression, and the key change/whoa-oh/and flaming lead section is the nuts. Makes the return to the main riffage all the more powerful. Great length, begging repeated listens. Triple thumbs up.

Glenn Case - I write songs with a crayon clenched in a fist. You use sharp colored pencils wielded with grace. This song leads the pack by a mile, as good as many of the others are. Progressions, melodies, instrument choices, the beat...it's all excellent. Love the lead as wiggle melodic line. A+ and congratulations on your next win!

Lichen Throat
- This reminds me of long gone SongFighter! Eclectic SpOOns. The music is interesting and complex, bordering on busy at times. I'm no vocalist, but you can't be scared of the microphone or worry about what people are gonna hear. Lose the self consciousness. It'll come. Good first entry, keep at it.

Micah Sommersmith - Oddly rousing. Not arousing, ha! Ahem. I never read Pitchfork, but was aware of it. Interesting approach and clever lyrics. Maybe some subtle backing vocals here and there would add a bit of color although the glocks certainly are a nice touch. I'm curious as to how you record the accordian. Via a 1/4" output, direct?

Paco del Stinko - Some Trump, some Republican and Democrat mish-mash. Was running late or would have added some backing vocals.

The Pannacotta Army - Love the stomping rhythm. Excellent lyrics, smart and well constructed. The musical layering is delicious, from the keys and many backing vocals. This should give Glenn Case's song a run, it's right up there. Tasty main melody, easy to process.

Pepper Jane - The song is moody and dark, sweet, simultaneously. The backing vocals, telephone tone or otherwise, are in my opinion just mixed wrong: too high in the mix. The phone voice is mixed better late in the song. Use it (them) like a thought in your head, not an equal lead vocal. Something like that. Nice sadness. (!) Guitar sounds great, love its tone. Myrtle or whatever its name is.

Squirrels in the attic - This has a good vibe to it, but is way too wandery and stumbling around the room. Tighten it up, you probably wouldn't lose the laidback kickin' it in the barn feel. I could sit and play live all night like this, if just more focused.
Bringin' the stink since 2006.
User avatar
the panna cotta army
Somebody Get Me A Doctor
Posts: 124
Joined: Sun Mar 20, 2011 11:35 am
Instruments: egg shaker (Grade 2)
Recording Method: Studio One 4
Submitting as: the pannacotta army
Location: Kent, UK

Re: Don't forget the torches (Pitchfork Nation Reviews)

Post by the panna cotta army »

"....just my 2c,
so don't take offence...."

Dirge
On first listen this reminded me of Placebo but maybe it's just that your voice sounds like their lead singer Brian Molko. The melody wanders into vague territory on occasion but works for the most part with the acoustic backing. Doubled up guitar gives a natural chorus effect that I'm not completely sure about. I wonder if just a single one would've sounded better but I like the open chord sequence, especially the initial F to A shift.

Lichen Throat

There's some kind of square-dance feel lurking within this. I'm not keen on the choice of sounds. I don't mind some cheap casio-ish keyboard sounds, but these are all kind of similar sounding (poor emulations of string instruments) so the arrangement/mix sounds muddled. Not much in the way of melody although I don't mind your deadpan delivery (Principal Skinner by way of Leonard Cohen) of the excellent lyrics.

Glenn Case
I really like the opening/repeated 2 chord organ riff. The verses are great too - that's a catchy melody which the harmony vocals really embellish. The chorus is not quite as strong but I like the way you change the feel with that double clap. The solo is a bit obvious, I would have preferred something to make it more interesting but overall a top notch pop song.

Pepper Jane
I like the lyrics and your vocal is good as usual, though I'm not convinced by the spoken interventions. However, it feels more like only part of a song - a long outro section - rather than a full structured piece.

Andy Balham
The sound of your voice here is good but the delivery could be tighter/sharper, I think it's possibly this which gives the song a little bit of a sloppy timing feel. The melody is somewhat predictable but I like the grungy guitar sound and the organ that comes in on the chorus.

Berkeley Social Scene
Something about the mix is not coming together. Guitars are possibly too loud and over-separated by panning and the bass seems rather lost. The drums and vocals are the best parts about this. The song doesn't really evoke any strong feeling in me - I don't completely dislike it but I'm not really falling in love with it either.

Micah Sommersmith
This is very well assembled and arranged. I can really appreciate the effort that's been put into the production and all the little touches like the xylophone which are great. The overall feel however, is a little cheesy like a song from a musical or even a TV commercial, especially that "you've got Pitchfork - you've got Pitchfork nation" bit. I guess it's the theatrical vocal delivery.

Squirrels in the attic
This sounds to me like it was made up on the fly, including the lyrics - someone pressed record then everyone involved just improvised whatever they felt like. There's no real coherence (apart from sticking to the key of G) or structure and it all sounds aimless.

Flaming Tiger
This is not really my bag but that doesn't stop me being impressed by the fizzing energy and unforgiving, ballsy, tight groove. The vocal performance is no slouch either. Really put together well. You won me over with the genre.

Paco del Stinko
This is a pretty solid production. I quite like the main retro sounding rock riff and the way the vocal melody follows this. Not so sure about the transition/bridge sections but the spooky sounding middle section works well with the lyrics and the solo that follows is cool.
User avatar
MicahSommer
Push Comes to Shove
Posts: 369
Joined: Tue Dec 13, 2011 3:09 pm
Instruments: Voice, accordion, keyboards, guitar, euphonium
Recording Method: StudioOne Artist / AudioBox USB
Submitting as: Micah Sommersmith
Pronouns: they/them or he/him
Location: Wisconsin, USA
Contact:

Re: Don't forget the torches (Pitchfork Nation Reviews)

Post by MicahSommer »

Paco Del Stinko wrote:Micah Sommersmith - ... I'm curious as to how you record the accordian. Via a 1/4" output, direct?
I record all my acoustic instruments and voice with the condenser microphone that came with my AudioBox USB pre-amp. For the accordion, I play and record the right hand and left hand parts separately because I'm a hack and because I only have one good mic. For this tune I recorded the right hand twice with different registrations (octave combinations) and mixed them together.
"you did a skillful job pulling off the sexy" - RangerDenni
User avatar
Chumpy
Twilight Sparkle
Posts: 661
Joined: Sat Apr 18, 2015 2:06 pm
Instruments: Vocals, guitar, bass
Recording Method: Logic
Submitting as: Jerkatorium, Chumpy
Pronouns: he/him
Location: Seattle, WA
Contact:

Re: Don't forget the torches (Pitchfork Nation Reviews)

Post by Chumpy »

Andy Ballham - Unencoded straight-up political commentary is hard for me to take right now, so the content of your song is a turn off for me. On the plus side, I like energy and the character of your vocals, you've got that Ian Curtis vibe.

Berkeley Social Scene - Not really feeling this one. I think part of the problem is that the verse vocal melody is weak and meandering. The bridge lines 'these are the times / pay for your crimes' sound half-hearted, and I get the feeling that by the end of it the singer is just happy to be done.

Dirge - Pretty good results for the limited tme you spent on it. The guitars occasionally sound boomy which is a bit distracting, but you've managed to create a good sense of space.

Flaming Tiger - Would it have killed you to have a tacked on another chorus at the end? I get wanting to keep things short and sweet, but man, the chorus rocks so hard, I want another one! Right at the end there is a single high-hat, like at 1:06, just add three more of those and I would be SUPER PUMPED for a chorus return. VOTE.

Glenn Case - My favorite song of the fight. I must have listened to this 20x or so since the songs were posted. What is that keyboard patch? It's realy lush and provides a great texture. Pop sensibilities, you HAS THEM. You've totally inspired me to try to record some actual hand-claps, yours sound really good. I also really dig your video, it's cool to visually see how all the various song elements come together. VOTE.

Lichen Throat - Again, I struggle with overt political commentary. Too soon. Having said that, I feel like the lyrics are well written. Your voice has a rich deep quality to it, like Lou Reed or Leonard Cohen, I look forward to hearing more from you.

Micah Sommersmith - Great story here, good storytelling and smart lyrics. My only complaint is that it gets a little heavy-handed towards the end in its condemnation of Pitchfork readers as sheep who blindly follow their taste making overlords. VOTE.

Paco del Stinko - Dig the wide stereo separation at the top. The spooky praaaaaayyyy breakdown is my favorite part of the song. The verses have a certain dark plodding to them that I can't quite get into. The guitar freakout at the end has a great classic rock tone. The 'meeeeeee' ending is also great.

The Pannacotta Army - I like the catchy rhythm the hand claps, and I love that snare sound. Good writing, good playing, good arrangement, and I didn't have to work to appreciate it. VOTE.

Pepper Jane - I agree with Paco, the telephone vocals are a bit too loud in the mix early on, but get dialed back into the background where they should be as the song goes on. I think it's cool that they are there to add interest and contrast. Overall I like the sad darker tone, but I'm not sure it really goes anywhere.

Squirrels in the attic - You guys really tightened up your act for Good Faith, and made something focused that had some really good moments. What happend this time? It's back to bleary-eyed-off-the-cuff spacey jams that are likely only enjoyable for the people who made them.
"... unbearable, badly sung jangle-jangle. Everyone who has ever voted for Jerkatorium anywhere - your just rewards." --j$
User avatar
lichenthroat
Push Comes to Shove
Posts: 409
Joined: Thu Oct 27, 2016 12:54 pm
Recording Method: MuseScore & Ardour or Reaper
Submitting as: Lichen Throat, Dimetrodon, Sparetooth, Escapegoat
Pronouns: he/him
Location: New Mexico

Re: Don't forget the torches (Pitchfork Nation Reviews)

Post by lichenthroat »

Here’s my first attempt at reviews. An unexpected bonus to my SongFight participation was how much fun it was to listen to everyone’s music. I’m very impressed with the level of skill, talent, and musical knowledge here.

Andy Balham—Nice guitar tone. This sounds like it could be the best song in the soundtrack of a sequel to The Rocky Horror Picture Show.

Berkeley Social Scene—I really like the chorus, both your vocal and the guitar line. The remainder of the song seems somehow incongruous, in a way that I’m not quite able to specifically identify.

Dirge—I got the Pixies thing that others have been mentioning right away, but the more I’ve listened to it, the more I’ve been struck by how the guitar sounds simultaneously tender and forceful. Good work.

Flaming Tiger—This is great! Every time it’s over, I immediately want to listen again; I’ve probably heard it 30+ times by now. The lyrics ride perfectly on the edge of enigma and clarity. It seems like a straightforward punk song that has another layer of sophistication buried underneath. Hearty approval of the vocal delivery and the guitar solo. VOTE

Glenn Case—Masterfully conceived and executed. The Elvis Costello-esque vocal is delivered well. Every individual component of this song is spot-on. It doesn’t quite capture my complete interest, however, but I can’t really say why. I suspect it may be a problem with me, rather than with the song, since there’s definitely nothing to complain about in the vocal, the musicianship, or the production.

Lichen Throat (me)—After recording the first vocal take, I had an incredulous moment of “That’s what my voice sounds like?” Then I realized it was the first time I’d heard my recorded singing voice as an adult. Thanks to everyone for welcoming me to the community and for the comments, which I have already found to be quite astute.

Micah Sommersmith—I love this. The lyrics are fun and clever, with lots of nice rhymes. There’s a nice match in tone between the subject matter and the instrument sounds. I particularly like the accordion and the glockenspiel (or xylophone?). Your vocal flair is very appropriate for the lyrics. Listening to this song makes me happy. VOTE

Paco del Stinko
—The Halloween garage thrash vibe suits the lyrics well. The unrestrained flavor of the performance is an interesting—and effective—pairing with the lyrical cynicism.

The Pannacotta Army—Really dig the stompy rhythm and the oblique, yet heartfelt, lyrical take on the subject matter. The organ on the bridge/interlude is a very nice touch. Your vocals sound good, too. VOTE

Pepper Jane—I heard the opening guitar and the first vocal line and thought “Wow!” It’s powerful in a very quiet way. If I went to a coffeehouse performance and the singer opened with this, I’d expect to be in for a pleasant evening. I like the idea of the spoken-word elements better than the execution, however; they seem to be mixed a bit loud.

Squirrels in the Attic—I wouldn’t want to listen to this often, but it works as a novelty song about paranoid hillbillies. You’ve done a good job capturing the unfocused nature of the concerns of the marginally rational.
User avatar
dirgetheband
Somebody Get Me A Doctor
Posts: 115
Joined: Tue Nov 04, 2008 9:52 pm
Instruments: Guitar, Bass
Recording Method: Pro Tools 8 M-Powered, Dell XPS 630, M-Audio Delta 66/44, Tascam 488 & 424, NCH WavePad
Submitting as: Dirge
Location: St. Louis MO
Contact:

Re: Don't forget the torches (Pitchfork Nation Reviews)

Post by dirgetheband »

lichenthroat wrote:Here’s my first attempt at reviews. An unexpected bonus to my SongFight participation was how much fun it was to listen to everyone’s music.
...and you've discovered the communal quality that truly makes this a great experience. Thank you for coming aboard. Tell your friends, tell your neighbors. The more we have here, the merrier. Generally.
lichenthroat wrote:Lichen Throat (me)—After recording the first vocal take, I had an incredulous moment of “That’s what my voice sounds like?” Then I realized it was the first time I’d heard my recorded singing voice as an adult. Thanks to everyone for welcoming me to the community and for the comments, which I have already found to be quite astute.
Hahaha, I remember the first time I recorded myself trying to sing. I was astonished that I didn't immediately sound like Chris Cornell or John Bush or Kurt Cobain.

I was discussing singing voices at length with a friend this week. His take is that sometimes, especially in my case, you need to stop TRYING to make your singing voice sound like a signing voice and just let it sound like your speaking voice. His example was my performance this week; it sounds more natural and more pleasing than anything I've ever done. Maybe you are trying too hard to make your voice sound a certain way. Experiment.
DT
thehipcola
Ice Cream Man
Posts: 1048
Joined: Sat Sep 25, 2004 10:51 am
Instruments: The things what make sounds.
Recording Method: LA610mk2 into UAD Apollo 8p into Cubase/LUNA/Reaper/Ableton/Reason/Maschine
Submitting as: thehipcolaredcargertFlamingTigershotpounderOGLawnDartsFussyBritchesGapingMaw
Location: Ottawa, Canada
Contact:

Re: Don't forget the torches (Pitchfork Nation Reviews)

Post by thehipcola »

The Pannacotta Army - I dig the drum sounds right away, kind of a “Cecilia” vibe. Ha - the singing/lyrics fit perfectly with folky vibe - love it. Great work.

Pepper Jane - Really love the lyric pattern.. awesome. Not a fan of the telephone voice - feels too jarring/distracting. But the main sung lyric/melody - tasty and I want more of that. Pretty guitar work too.

Lichen Throat - digging the dulcimer or whatever it throughout…and really like the slide into a minor scale at times. Great lyrics.

BSS - I’m sucker for creamy sounding dual wide guitars… nice. Vocals aren’t selling it too me this time though. Nice recording. Really love the verse pattern. Ending is awesome!

Dirge - Nice guitar work. I think I’d love the melody and singing better if it was a bit more confident, but I definitely like where you’re heading with this. Nice tune!

Squirrels in the Attic - it seems a little thrown together and unfocused. Not working for me this time.

Micah Sommersmith - nice! I like the non-obvious take on the title… refreshing. Great playing throughout. Not my cup of tea stylistically - but it’s really well done.

Andy Balham - Great lyrics. Sonically - I’m wanting more punch - everything seems to be sitting back in the mix - where are those drums? :) On the flipside - vox are super clear, so easy to understand. I like it.

Paco del Stinko - Love that riff off the top, and the guitar sound too. Always dig your changes, and the return to the main riff with harmony lines - killer!!!! And always with the killer bridges - nice. Solo rocks as usual.

Glenn Case - I’m digging the chords right off the top. Very singy - and it works. Sounds not unlike The Odds - which is a compliment (imo). This is a strong song, nice work.

Flaming Tiger - thanks for the reviews - this one was a lot of fun.


Great fight everyone!
User avatar
MicahSommer
Push Comes to Shove
Posts: 369
Joined: Tue Dec 13, 2011 3:09 pm
Instruments: Voice, accordion, keyboards, guitar, euphonium
Recording Method: StudioOne Artist / AudioBox USB
Submitting as: Micah Sommersmith
Pronouns: they/them or he/him
Location: Wisconsin, USA
Contact:

Re: Don't forget the torches (Pitchfork Nation Reviews)

Post by MicahSommer »

Andy Balham - I dig the intro, despite a few rhythmic issues with the guitar. Nice synth in the chorus, too. Good lyrics although the vocal performance and melody don’t grab me at all.

Berkeley Social Scene - Nice dueling guitar riffs at the beginning although rhythmically they don’t quite always gel. Love the riffs in the “citizens of Pitchfork Nation” section, and the military snare drum at various points. I think the guitars are a little too loud, or else the vocals are a little too soft, or both.

Dirge - Seemingly simple but with some interesting things going on between the two guitars which are almost but not quite playing the exact same thing. The little guitar fill underneath “through your eyes” is really great. There’s an odd sort of melancholy in this song that I find surprisingly moving.

Flaming Tiger - Compact, high-energy, great lyrical construction (rhymes upon rhymes!). Excellent guitar solo and “Whoah-ah-oh” underneath it. That single high-hat click at the end sounds real silly, and I would have loved another time through the chorus at the end.

Glenn Case - Great production, composition, and lyrics. I wanted it to kick up a notch higher in the chorus. The backing vocals didn’t really seem to add anything when they came in. That little clap clap, clap during the chorus is cheap but fun. The rhythm electric guitar sounded a little messy (the tone/distortion, not the playing) and the acoustic guitars a little too bright - if the song was longer I think they would have gotten fatiguing. But those are minor production complaints. On the whole this is a good one.

Lichen Throat - Welcome to Song Fight! I enjoyed this a lot. Clever rhymes throughout, and I really like how the instrument almost but not quite doubles the vocal melody. The bridge felt like a drop in energy and just sort of dragged along, but I like the almost bouncy energy in the rest of the song. I hope to hear more from you!

Micah Sommersmith - I’m pretty happy with how this one came out. I had fun writing the lyrics, feel like my voice is in good form, and worked pretty hard at getting a good mix. (I have discovered something magical called… “EQ.”)

Paco del Stinko - Killer riff, and great guitar harmonies before the second verse. As always, a very respectable guitar solo. All in all, a fine addition to the PdS canon.

The Pannacotta Army - Really really nice indie folk sound, a la Lumineers/Head and the Heart/etc, with some cool surprises thrown in. It’s clear that a lot of care was put into the production and it sounds great. Good melody and vocal performance too. Lyrics are just non-specific enough that everyone can imagine you’re talking about someone else. ;)

Pepper Jane - Great lyrics that suggest more than they say outright. I’m not sure the phoned-in vocals work that well. They sound sort of… phoned-in.

Squirrels in the attic - Instruments are barely together, vocals seem mostly improvised. It worked great for Neil Young on “Tonight’s the Night,” not so much here.
"you did a skillful job pulling off the sexy" - RangerDenni
Post Reply