The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Discuss upcoming, current, and previous song fights.
Hoblit
Lemur
Posts: 3651
Joined: Sat Sep 25, 2004 12:48 pm
Location: Tampa, Florida Where old people come to die.
Contact:

The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by Hoblit » Mon Sep 09, 2019 12:52 pm

Quick, review them before they get all gooey!
owl
Tamarin
Posts: 322
Joined: Mon May 15, 2017 1:29 pm
Instruments: vox keys uke guitar
Recording Method: REAPER
Submitting as: Vowl Sounds, miscellaneous owl
Pronouns: she/her
Location: Madison, WI
Contact:

Re: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by owl » Tue Sep 10, 2019 11:31 pm

Lunkhead
Gorilla
Posts: 6160
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: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by Lunkhead » Wed Sep 11, 2019 10:40 pm

Songs posted!
User avatar
vowlvom
Capuchin
Posts: 530
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: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by vowlvom » Thu Sep 12, 2019 7:16 am

Had a first listen on my lunch break, this is a cracking fight! I'll write some reviews once I've had some more listens, but particularly loving the Don Mattingly's Mustache track - really good stuff.
Lunkhead
Gorilla
Posts: 6160
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: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by Lunkhead » Thu Sep 12, 2019 8:01 am

We haven't had this many songs in a fight since "Day of the Dead" nearly four years ago!
User avatar
Æpplês&vØdkã
Marmoset
Posts: 233
Joined: Thu Jul 27, 2006 1:59 pm
Instruments: Drums, bass, synths, guitar, whatever else is around.
Recording Method: Tascam dp006, Shure SM-58, FL studio
Submitting as: Phlebia
Location: Near Atlanta
Contact:

Re: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by Æpplês&vØdkã » Thu Sep 12, 2019 8:21 am

Lunkhead wrote:
Thu Sep 12, 2019 8:01 am
We haven't had this many songs in a fight since "Day of the Dead" nearly four years ago!
And here I am seeing "Pocket Full of Bones" and thinking of Day of the Dead as a potential lyrical theme.
User avatar
jb
Lemur
Posts: 3705
Joined: Sat Sep 25, 2004 10:12 am
Instruments: Guitar, Cello, Keys, Uke, Vox, Perc
Recording Method: Logic X
Submitting as: The John Benjamin Band
Location: WASHINGTON, DC
Contact:

Re: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by jb » Thu Sep 12, 2019 12:34 pm

Lot of interesting, effortful submissions for this fight. I think Hoblit is my favorite right now.

JB
"Recently I've found the mic makes a difference." - AJOwens
User avatar
jb
Lemur
Posts: 3705
Joined: Sat Sep 25, 2004 10:12 am
Instruments: Guitar, Cello, Keys, Uke, Vox, Perc
Recording Method: Logic X
Submitting as: The John Benjamin Band
Location: WASHINGTON, DC
Contact:

Re: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by jb » Thu Sep 12, 2019 12:35 pm

Note: The "Don Mattingly's Mustache" entry is me and infamous songfighter Marcus Kellis, who came to DC to visit friends and stopped by my house to crank out an entry to the fight. Don Mattingly was a childhood hero of mine, and subsequently manager of Marcus's favorite team, the Dodgers. Marcus wrote the lyrics, came up with the chorus melody, sang lead and whistled. I was on producer/engineer duty.
72AF0EE7-1F71-4F88-96CA-8196911EF13A.gif
72AF0EE7-1F71-4F88-96CA-8196911EF13A.gif (239.54 KiB) Viewed 635 times
JB
"Recently I've found the mic makes a difference." - AJOwens
Hoblit
Lemur
Posts: 3651
Joined: Sat Sep 25, 2004 12:48 pm
Location: Tampa, Florida Where old people come to die.
Contact:

Re: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by Hoblit » Thu Sep 12, 2019 5:34 pm

jb wrote:
Thu Sep 12, 2019 12:34 pm
Lot of interesting, effortful submissions for this fight. I think Hoblit is my favorite right now.

JB
Thank you right now!
User avatar
crumpart
Tarsier
Posts: 67
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: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by crumpart » Fri Sep 13, 2019 12:40 am

I’ve just noticed that my podcast app hasn’t picked up all the songs in this round. It’s only showing 10 of them. Anyone else having this problem?

Edit: just noticed that I only got 10 of the Please Move songs as well, dammit! (Last week was the first time I used my podcast app to listen because I was away, and it seemed more convenient.)
User avatar
gizo
Tarsier
Posts: 52
Joined: Sun Sep 17, 2006 11:42 pm
Instruments: i am mostly playing stringed ones, but I'll have a tilt at most
Recording Method: garageband (mac and iOS, depending on the moment). I also have a porta04, somewhere
Submitting as: gizo, et al.
Location: I wish I was at an ocean beach, but instead I'm here with you

Re: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by gizo » Fri Sep 13, 2019 3:24 am

crumpart wrote:
Fri Sep 13, 2019 12:40 am
I’ve just noticed that my podcast app hasn’t picked up all the songs in this round. It’s only showing 10 of them. Anyone else having this problem?
I got them all in Overcast...
.sig
User avatar
crumpart
Tarsier
Posts: 67
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: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by crumpart » Fri Sep 13, 2019 4:36 am

gizo wrote:
Fri Sep 13, 2019 3:24 am
crumpart wrote:
Fri Sep 13, 2019 12:40 am
I’ve just noticed that my podcast app hasn’t picked up all the songs in this round. It’s only showing 10 of them. Anyone else having this problem?
I got them all in Overcast...
Dammit. My pocketcasts must be full of bones.
User avatar
Æpplês&vØdkã
Marmoset
Posts: 233
Joined: Thu Jul 27, 2006 1:59 pm
Instruments: Drums, bass, synths, guitar, whatever else is around.
Recording Method: Tascam dp006, Shure SM-58, FL studio
Submitting as: Phlebia
Location: Near Atlanta
Contact:

Re: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by Æpplês&vØdkã » Fri Sep 13, 2019 7:06 pm

CTHAUHAUS:

What I like:
I like the vocal performance in the verses. When the harmonies stick, they really sound good. Production is pretty good, if a tad compressed.

What I don't:
Lots of flat notes in the chorus, doesn't really pick up at any point, just chugs along.

Don Mattingley's Mustache:

What I like:
Okay the lyrics made me chuckle, especially when you get into just name dropping. I like the dichotomy between the verses and the chorus/more uptempo bits. Clever composition!

What I don't:
Maybe add a transition between the slower verse and faster chorus? It picks up rather abruptly but that's okay.

Glenn Case: VOTE

What I like:
I'm a sucker for deep synths and chilled out grooves, so this automatically gets a lot of points in my book. Drums are very meat and potatoes, which works for this kind of style. That chord progression you have going into the chorus makes me super happy. Guitar solo is short but well executed, reminds me of that Supernatural album Santana put out like 20 years ago.

What I don't:
That chord modulation on "souu-und" doesn't quite sit with my ears. Resolution is bold but doesn't work for me either.

Glennny: VOTE


What I like:
You inherently fulfill the optional challenge by going with doo-wop, and I like how that panned guitar comes in. The lyrics are pretty well put together to and fit the style well.

What I don't:
I can't really complain much about this song. Maybe the guitar drowns out the vocals at times during the solo, so it's hard to follow the chord progression. Otherwise, can't complain!

Hoblit:

What I like:
Okay, here's a drinking song...which I was expecting but I like the approach you took to it. Quality lyrics throughout, well recorded, tight performance!

What I don't:
It doesn't really stick with me? I don't know why, it's just not doing it for me.

Hot Pink Halo: VOTE!

What I like:
Something about the 3/4 time and dreamy harmonies and twinkly synth and major 7ths every where makes me extraordinarily happy. Do you ever listen to Broadcast? This kind of reminds me of some of their deeper cuts. I love the minor part halfway through.

What I don't:
Hmm, as with last week, I'm enamoured with your vocal experiments, and the lo-fi production just adds in the charm.

Jerkatorium:


This is whiplash from that last song haha.

What I like:
Tightly executed, well composed. I'm trying to peg what your vocal stylings remind me of but I can't place it. Great guitar solo and entertaining lyrics.

What I don't:
I don't really like how different the way you sing "liquid starshine" is from the rest of the melody. It doesn't fit well imo. But my real complaint is with any pronunciaton of Appalachia that isn't "APP-UH-LATCH-UH". Perhaps it's the people not from the region trying to insist to the locals that the primary "accepted" pronunciation is wrong rubbing me the wrong way as a child. No, dammit, we live here, quit trying to tell me that my pronunciation of my home region is wrong! Remember how much George Bush's poll numbers dipped in 2000 when he went to "NE-VAH-DUH" instead of "NE-VAAAA-DUH". Ahem.

Kyle Rogers:

What I like:
The mellow arrangement. The structure of the song, the high notes in the melody. Actually you have a pretty good sense of melody, and this song is composed pretty well.

What I don't:
You have a particular way of pronouncing words that I really don't like "GRAUWS" "TAWP". Why am I getting so nitpicky this fight with enunciation? I suppose in this case it's a certain stylistic choice that snaps me out of the melody. I'd like to hear it with out the OOMPH on so many words, needs "smoother" delivery?

Miscellaneous Owl: VOTE

What I like:
Your vocal inflections in the verses remind me of the Cranberries with a more upbeat mid/late 90sr alternative sheen on top of them. By and large I'd say you have a knack for melody. I'm a sucker for that grungy chorus.

What I don't:
At times the verse melodies in the back half of the song seem kind of half baked. Vocal recording quality is a bit clipped at times, maybe fix that up?

Paco Del Stinko: VOTE VOTE VOTE

What I like:
Oh yes these chord progressions, yes this bouncy change. You added a meow to the song, and then...oh man an aprupt psychedelic shift! I love those (obviously, I used one too, just a lot less ornate). And the build! And the release! You rock! I only half followed the lyrics but they have plenty of rainbow spaghetti in them so they're great.

What I don't:
Nothing this is amazing.

Phillipso:

What I like:
Great breakbeat + backwards guitar, goes firmly with my perception of "liquid starshine" as an inherently psychedelic phrase. The verses and bridges and all that is totally fine. Your harmonies sound good, the vocals are well recorded. The "I feel incomplete" section is cool.

What I don't:
I don't like the chorus much, the transition into it never seems to fit. The problem is it's embedded in the rest of the song prominently.

Phlebia:

What I like:
I feel like this is definitely a step up from my last couple entries. I think the production mostly came out well, and I get it stuck in my head...but then again it came out of there so I guess it feels at home.

What I don't:
Flubbed a couple notes that I didn't catch until I'd already sent it in. Oh well. Feel like the slow tom and bass and drone part could have been executed a little better. Ending solo needed another take, also too low in the mix.

Pigfarmer JR:

What I like:
Good guitar solo, kind of a catchy song. Vocals are well recorded, structured fairly well.

What I don't:
The lyrics, honestly. I don't want to seem like some fuddy duddy who doesn't like swearing, but it depends on the style. Plus the "reality is screwed up" angle didn't quite appeal to me. I'm sure other people will vote for you, matter of taste.

Third Cat:

What I like:
Airy instrumental soundscape. Flanging. Soft drums. Peaceful. I hear how this would be called liquid starshine.

What I don't:
The mixing. The whooshing is too in the background, the clean guitar is too clear and in the foreground, the soft kick sounds next door, the snare drum sounds 2 feet away. If you're gonna do atmospheric instrumentals, gotta have a bit more...finesse?


Tim Hinkle: VOTE


What I like:
I love tea! Something about it reminds me of Jimmy Buffett. Which reminds me of my dad. Plus it's catchy. I kind of like how it takes a slightly psychedelic turn at the end with the organ and the switch to dorian.

What I don't:
The phased guitar a bit...sharp? Maybe add a high pass? Something to smush it into the mix better.

Tron Air: VOTE!

What I like:
Am I watching Reading Rainbow? Wait no, it's a b-side off of Merriweather Post Pavilion. The harmonies and production on this are impeccable. And that arpeggiated guitar! It's glamerous! I'm bathing in liquid starshine! I can feel the cosmos! This is so much better than last week's entry, yes!

What I don't:
Maybe it reminds me TOO strongly of Animal Collective? Who cares, my instrumental is basically early 80's The Cure distilled so influences are great. I also had My Girls in my wedding mix CD so there.

Vom Vorton: VOTE

What I like:
Those deep synths! Your flow is great, and the song is well produced. I like the kind of nihilistic approach to liquid starshine - not too many people made it noticably dark and that's much appreciated. I know I got into Pigfarmer cause I didn't like the upfront swearing but hip-hop is a context in which it doesn't bother me at all.

What I don't:
Well, it first came on while I was playing dots & lines with my 5 year old son, so I had to reach over and turn it off when the chorus started.
User avatar
thirdcatmusic
Tarsier
Posts: 77
Joined: Sun May 06, 2018 8:52 am
Submitting as: Third Cat
Location: US

Re: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by thirdcatmusic » Sat Sep 14, 2019 10:09 am

Chthauhaus - Reminds me of Joy Division, cool attitude on the vocals. I like the "she's one of a kind, she's liquid starshine" line and the lyrics in general are pretty engaging. I like this one. VOTE.

Don Mattingly's Mustache - The verse & chorus seem like different songs which can be a good or bad thing, not sure about it on this one. The chorus is catchy and fun. A maybe vote.

Glenn Case - I love the vibe on this one and the vocals are great for the style. Love the big squelchy synth bass. The drums are groovy. In the running for my favorite of the fight and a definite VOTE.

Glennny - Really cool vocal harmonies. Lovely song and the lyrics are pretty fantastic. Another one I have to VOTE for. Great stuff.

Hoblit - Great groove and well done drinking lyrics. I like this one a lot and probably deserves a vote too. The vocals are good, very expressive.

Hot Pink Halo - I like the spaced out vibe but the whole thing is a bit too off kilter rhythmically, at least on initial listens, might be a thing that grows on me.

Jerkatorium - Clever lyrics and very well done musically/production-wise. This might be one where I appreciate it more than like listening to it though. Not sure - might be a grower. Still I think it deserves a VOTE either way as it's very well done. I think I remember you guys saying you don't like Ween on your podcast but this reminds me of Ween (... like Quebec era ...) I do like Ween, so I mean it as a compliment.

Kyle Rogers - Nice energy for a g&g song. The vocal harmonies could be tighter although I like the ideas.

Misc Owl - Pretty cool garage rock lo-fi vibe. Nice little touch with the keys that come in around 90 seconds in. I saw you said you have been listening to a lot of GBV - and I can definitely hear that here. This one is a maybe voter for me.

Paco del Stinko - This seems like one of the more inspired Paco del Stinko songs, I love the breakdown and build-up section. VOTE.

Phillipso - Love that guitar riff / reversed guitar thing. Great psychedelic rock thing nice. Some nice vocal harmonies too, very tasty. And killer keys. The breakdown bit around 2:35 doesn't work as well for me, but overall this is another in the maybe vote category. Depends on how it grows on me, there are some parts of this I really love.

Phlebia - This seems like something that should be up my alley but isn't really working for me overall but I do like some elements of it - the drums sound pretty good and the vocals are pretty good for this style. But the production/mix lets it down a bit as it sounds all very muddy and lo-fi in a way that doesn't work for me on this type of soong.

Pigfarmer Jr - Pretty well done for the style, but the style isn't really my thing so it's hard for me to get into personally. Still I think this sounds better production/mix-wise than I've heard from you before. Pretty good vocal performance, good guitars.

Tim Hinkle - Interesting mix of sounds here, I like how you can hear each element clearly but my complaint is that it doesn't quite gel altogether into one thing, the elements seem a bit too disconnected. Maybe it's a rhythmic thing more than a production/mix thing. Some catchy vocal lines, reminds me of some '70s jams.

Tron Air - Very pretty instrumental, lovely stuff. Maybe you went a little crazy with the reverb but it sounds nice. The vocals work OK and grow on me as it goes. Overall this one is a maybe vote.

Vom Vorton - OK. The rapping is pretty good and I like the music, nice job keeping it minimalist which is what this kind of style calls for I think. Overall I don't know what to think, but I will give you credit for doing something I wasn't expecting at all from Vom Vorton. Might be a grower for me and a possible vote.
User avatar
gizo
Tarsier
Posts: 52
Joined: Sun Sep 17, 2006 11:42 pm
Instruments: i am mostly playing stringed ones, but I'll have a tilt at most
Recording Method: garageband (mac and iOS, depending on the moment). I also have a porta04, somewhere
Submitting as: gizo, et al.
Location: I wish I was at an ocean beach, but instead I'm here with you

Re: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by gizo » Sun Sep 15, 2019 4:06 pm

Still digesting these tracks, but two lyrics have pleased me in the way they move through the context of the song:

"Our heaven orbits hell"

and

"nobody can tell if we dance or we fight"

nice work, Vom Vorton and Crump.
.sig
User avatar
neutronflow
Tarsier
Posts: 55
Joined: Mon Jun 06, 2005 6:42 pm
Instruments: Vocals, guitar, bass, kazooka
Recording Method: Audacity, UMC404HD
Submitting as: Tim Hinkle
Location: Utah
Contact:

Re: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by neutronflow » Sun Sep 15, 2019 6:34 pm

Cthauhaus: The song feels fairly monotonous but the performance/recording really sells this for me. It just sounds right. The phrase "cassette deck" and the word "silhouette" are pronounced in a way that somehow gives me chills.

Don Mattingly's Mustache: This gives me a Magnetic Fields kind of vibe. I like the chorus better than the verse, but the verse has grown on me over several listens. VOTE

Glenn Case: This is very pleasant to listen to. Doesn't quite grab me as much as some of the other things, but there's nothing I don't like about it. I actually particularly like the modulation on "souu-und."

Glennny: This is delightful and fun. Bright and cheerful, but with cynicism in the marrow of its bones. VOTE

Hoblit: This is quite mellow and pleasant. I don't ever feel super involved by it, but it's enjoyable. I like your vocal delivery. My girlfriend, Jessica, says, "I like the idea of this song, but I don't like the sound of it." Then she said she wants it to sound more like Jimmy Buffet. I'm not really sure I follow what she's thinking.

Hot Pink Halo: I love the sound of this. It's very pretty and ethereal. In the second verse, I think I'd prefer to hear the word "strength" drawn out rather than "our." VOTE

Jerkatorium: This is my favorite of the fight. It's really catchy. Bouncy, fun, and pretty. VOTE

Kyle Rogers: Your guitar playing sounds very nice. The melody gets a bit repetitive. I'd like to hear you sing a different bit of tune the third time through the F#m, A, Bm, D chord pattern, maybe swapping the Bm and D chords under this hypothetical changed up bit.

miscellaneous owl: I'm getting something of a Liz Phair vibe. I love the sound of this. The lyrics are clever; thanks for adding the glosses in the lyrics thread. VOTE

Paco del Stinko: I like the second half a lot more than the first half. I couldn't really follow the lyrics or tell what the song was about, but I think it's possible the first half is supposed to evoke a feeling of tension, in which case it's successful.

Phillipso: I didn't really get into this one. I do really like the way the phrase "liquid starshine" is sung. I also really like the instrumental section starting at 2:13, when the organ comes in.

Phlebia: I liked your song last week better. I like the overall sound of this one, but it doesn't really stay with me. When it ends, "Oh Persephone please move me..." pops into my head.

Pigfarmer Jr: I like the melody to this. Your playing and singing sound good. I'm not quite on board with the lyrics. I like the line "take a chicken and add a kazoo" even though I wouldn't describe a duck like that. I can't fathom what's so inexplicable about skunks.

Third Cat: This sounds like something that should be called "Liquid Starshine." I'm not sure I've ever felt that I grasped the connection between an instrumental on Song Fight and the posted title before. It's a wonderful soundscape that I can feel moving all around me.

Tron Air: There's a really lovely warmth that just washes over me while this is on. It puts me in mind of some 90s Yes things. Jessica says, "I enjoy this. The sparkly things sound like water." VOTE

Vom Vorton: I love the overall sound of this. Wonderful darkly humorous lyrics. Nicely atmospheric music. VOTE
Hoblit
Lemur
Posts: 3651
Joined: Sat Sep 25, 2004 12:48 pm
Location: Tampa, Florida Where old people come to die.
Contact:

Re: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by Hoblit » Mon Sep 16, 2019 7:55 am

neutronflow wrote:
Sun Sep 15, 2019 6:34 pm


Hoblit: This is quite mellow and pleasant. I don't ever feel super involved by it, but it's enjoyable. I like your vocal delivery. My girlfriend, Jessica, says, "I like the idea of this song, but I don't like the sound of it." Then she said she wants it to sound more like Jimmy Buffet. I'm not really sure I follow what she's thinking.

I lived in Tampa, FL for 18 years. I wrote this song partly as a tribute to the Tampa Bay area. So as far as Jimmy Buffet goes, she's totally picking up the Florida vibes that he often expresses as well.
User avatar
furrypedro
Loris
Posts: 1104
Joined: Mon Nov 07, 2005 12:06 pm
Instruments: Guitar, programming
Recording Method: Cubase, Reason
Submitting as: Balance Lost
Location: Kyoto
Contact:

Re: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by furrypedro » Mon Sep 16, 2019 8:45 pm

Before listening to these songs I decided to apply a set of arbitrary criteria upon which to judge them, just to make things interesting. These are:
1) Sonically it should have some element of liquidy, twinkly or shiny sounds.
2) Minus points for phrases to the effect of "she/he is like liquid starshine", unless this is qualified in some way with an appropriate metaphor.
3) The optional challenge will be considered, but no extra kudos given if it's not done well.
With hindsight I wonder if I should have added a caveat similar to #2 about drugs references, but I didn't so I won't penalise anyone for it as a matter of course.

Cthauhaus: First off, good name. Lyrics ain't bad but you've fallen at the first two arbitrary hurdles I've set (see above). Plenty of description about the subject, none seem to allude to why she's liquid. Sonically, about as untwinkly and unliquidy as it gets. Good bass sound, solid minimalism. The oohs are a bit wobbly and nudge this into potential comedy territory, though the outro sounds quite cool.

Don Mattingly's Moustache: The "several other guys" line is funny, but unfortunately the chorus triggers abritrary criteria #2 as there is no explanation as to why this girl's love is liquid, starry, or shiny. It's also devoid of twinkly or watery sounds. I spent this whole weekend listening to an "oldies" mix cd (The Platters, Paul Anka, etc.) and their lyrics are full of stuff like this, "I love this girl, but she's banging loads of other guys and she doesn't even like me, but I won't stop loving her cos I'm a desperate weasel", I'd never noticed before how many lyrics are focused on toxic situations like this. You've approached it in a more tongue-in-cheek way though, and the recording is solid. +5 points for the whistling solo. Also, why shouldn't the subject have so many guys?

Glenn Case: The first time I heard this it seemed like another 90s indie plodder, but on subsequent closer listens it's much more than that. The keys and squelching bass complement the shreddy guitar nicely. The drums switch up nicely between sections and the strung-out feel of the music matches the lyrical theme really well. Nice subtle use of harmonies as well. I'm edging towards the vote button.

Glennny: This is an entertaining jaunt through doo-wop territory. The arrangement is comical, but you pull it off pretty well and I commend your commitment to the style. This would've been good in The New Ugly Nur Ein round. Some of the lyrics seem a bit crowbarred in but mostly the work, except I don't get "greenback of Grant". You have skillfully evaded abitrary criteria #2, and I'm willing to overlook arbitrary criteria #1 on the basis that this kept me entertained. The guitar solo was even quite good. Nice job.

Hoblit: This isn't badly done, or badly written. I find it hard to say anything about it. The subject and arrangement left me a little uninspired, though I suppose it's fairly jaunty.

Hot Pink Halo: Regarding my criteria at the top this is miles ahead of most other entries. Super twinkly and a subject that nobody else touched on. On this basis I think it's worth a vote. There's still a bit of refinement needed in the execution/recordinng, etc. but overall this is really nice.

Jerkatorium: Another one in the drink camp. Although the arrangement is sadly lacking in watery sounds, the honky tonk piano adds a tiny bit of twinkle, and there's a guitar after the "permission to drink" line around 2.30 that sounds a bit like a distant stream train, I quite liked that. In conventional terms this is very professional, well written and excellently recorded. It kind of reminds me of Lonely Island's Great Day, but it lacks any of the darkness associated with substance abuse like that song does, and it's not as funny. I think I probably have some genre bias against it. It's obviously very good, probably a winner, but not really my thing.

Kyle Rogers: The guitar line in this is quite nice, some of the lyrics are good, in fact the overall feel is decent. There are too many things against it for me though. Firstly, the more enthusiastic your singing gets the more silly it seems. It's like you get more hammy when you sing louder or something. Secondly, the arrangement goes nowhere and for a song that's 4 and a half minutes long it gets boring.

Miscellaneous Owl: Some quality Superchunk-esque rocking here. It fails at arbitrary criteria #1 but it sounds cool so I don't mind too much, and I dig the mellotron solo (it's an easy way to my heart). For catchy tunes and sheer rockingness this is worth a vote. Plus points for not going anywhere near arbitrary criteria #2 (or drink/drugs).

Paco: Good value, as usual, but for the most part the first half completely fails to stick in my head no matter how many times I listen to it, and in spite of some nice little backing vocal and guitar touches. Nice arranging but the song just isn't that strong. The second half is much more arresting by comparison. The creepy bit is super creepy, but I particularly like the swirling sounds and the way the momentum builds up to the finale. The "swim in it..." section could easily do with a few more reps to let the listener groove to it a bit longer. That part is much catchier than anything before the breakdown and should be given more prominence. Flawed but much to applaud.

Phillipso: Supremely garagey sounds, although the technical skill here exceeds that of the average garage band I feel that it doesn't quite transcend it's trappings. The chorus melody is nearly great but it's missing just the right note somewhere. The middle section is fun in a shambolic way, when it cuts back to the chorus it sounds a bit like an edit/cut and paste job. The guitar sound is cool and the addition of the organ is nice. It's the kind of thing I'd like to return to once every few years rather than listen to every day.

Phlebia: This may not be a drug song, but if it was this is by far the best. The bleak sound is a good complement for the the lyrical matter, and the rhythm keeps the heart of this track pounding along at a satisfying rate. The filthy, swirling synths and rumbly, doom-laden bass give a really great atmosphere. I also love how the drum roll at 1.27 morphs seamlessly into the beat for the next section. My one problem was the hi-hat hits are too loud.

Pigfarmer Jr: Another drug song, this time in the Evan Dando mould (I guess, that's how I heard it anyway). It's not really a fair comparison but while this is competent enough, it's not in the same league as "If I could talk I'd tell you" let alone "Paid to Smile". As it is it's a bit too country for me, and the skunk line in particular is cringy.

Third Cat: Really cool swells of noise sweeping through this, and the twinkly guitar is pleasant. I like that high-pitched synth that comes in, very reminiscent of the Sophtware Slump. The disco beat is an interesting choice, but not one I will complain about.

Tim Hinkle: A drug song of the milder variety. Remove the references to chemicals and you could probably sell this one to Yusuf Islam, or Donovan even. It's a pleasant enough slice of 60s folk psychedlia.

Tron Air: I award myself 10/10 for liquidy twinkliness.

Vom Vorton: Some great lines in this. My favourites are "back to sleep for more dystopian dreaming" and "bludgeon our consciences into unconsciousness". The minimalist synthery works really well with the subject matter and I like the angle compared to a lot of the other drinking songs here, for this reason I will forego my desire for twinkles on this occasion. There are a couple of moments when there a few too many syllables to scan properly, and also the harmonies are not quite there, as such the chorus is a touch challenging. Overall I enjoyed it though.


Æpplês&vØdkã wrote:
Fri Sep 13, 2019 7:06 pm
Tron Air: Maybe it reminds me TOO strongly of Animal Collective?
It's funny cos I do own a copy of Merriweather Post Pavilion and My Girls is a great tune, but they didn't even cross my mind when making this track. Their sound must just be that deeply etched into my subconscious.
User avatar
glennny
Chimpanzee
Posts: 2010
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: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by glennny » Tue Sep 17, 2019 2:56 am

Furrypedro wrote:
...except I don't get "greenback of Grant"
I've always thought of "greenback" as another name for US paper currency. However, looking it up it's more accurately the US paper money that predates our current currency.

internet says:

They were known popularly as "greenbacks", a name inherited from the earlier greenbacks, the Demand Notes, that they replaced in 1862. Often termed Legal Tender Notes, they were named United States Notes by the First Legal Tender Act, which authorized them as a form of fiat currency.

There's that Ray Charles song "Greenbacks" that made me most familiar with the term.

Anyway, Grant is on the $50. So for the lap dance the stripper got $30 plus tip ($20) = $50 in my story.

I was thinking of liquid starshine as a lotion that strippers use to make their skin glittery. I was very pleased to see that there is lip gloss with that name and same effect. Thanks Owl! I was close.
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
Æpplês&vØdkã
Marmoset
Posts: 233
Joined: Thu Jul 27, 2006 1:59 pm
Instruments: Drums, bass, synths, guitar, whatever else is around.
Recording Method: Tascam dp006, Shure SM-58, FL studio
Submitting as: Phlebia
Location: Near Atlanta
Contact:

Re: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by Æpplês&vØdkã » Tue Sep 17, 2019 3:27 am

furrypedro wrote:
Mon Sep 16, 2019 8:45 pm

Phlebia: This may not be a drug song, but if it was this is by far the best.
It both is and isn't. To me "Liquid Starshine" sounded like a name my old roommate would come up with when he was working as a rave promoter, so I wrote the song loosely about a 22 hour psytrance field party that he invited me to back in 2010. So while it's not *directly* about drugs, it's certainly about a druggie environment. I'm glad you liked it!

As for the hi-hat, I'm still trying to figure out the best way to record my drums...all I've got is the Tascam DP-006 and a Shure SM-58 and only so many flat surfaces to put them on. So my snares sound boxy, my kick drum sounds far away, and everything has garage reverb all over it. Everything else I can get way better fidelity on but such is life!
User avatar
furrypedro
Loris
Posts: 1104
Joined: Mon Nov 07, 2005 12:06 pm
Instruments: Guitar, programming
Recording Method: Cubase, Reason
Submitting as: Balance Lost
Location: Kyoto
Contact:

Re: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by furrypedro » Tue Sep 17, 2019 4:38 am

glennny wrote:
Tue Sep 17, 2019 2:56 am
internet says:

They were known popularly as "greenbacks", a name inherited from the earlier greenbacks, the Demand Notes, that they replaced in 1862. Often termed Legal Tender Notes, they were named United States Notes by the First Legal Tender Act, which authorized them as a form of fiat currency.

There's that Ray Charles song "Greenbacks" that made me most familiar with the term.

Anyway, Grant is on the $50. So for the lap dance the stripper got $30 plus tip ($20) = $50 in my story.

I was thinking of liquid starshine as a lotion that strippers use to make their skin glittery. I was very pleased to see that there is lip gloss with that name and same effect. Thanks Owl! I was close.
Thanks for the info, dude. I should've guessed money really. Good to know you've got your maths straight too. I would expect nothing less from you. I appreciated your unique angle on the title.
User avatar
vowlvom
Capuchin
Posts: 530
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: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by vowlvom » Thu Sep 19, 2019 3:40 am

Chthauhaus - this is solid, but a little repetive and minimal for me, and I'm not crazy about the lead guitar sound (does it start out as a real guitar and then change to a synth guitar later on, or do my ears deceive me?). I do like the chunky bass and rhythm guitar though, it just kinda feels like they're doing the same thing all the way through and I wish there was a little more variation.

Don Mattingly's Mustache - I love this, it's perfect. Even the bit where you start singing the chorus then realise it's time for the solo and start whistling. The shift between the verse and chorus is delightful and the lyrics are hilarious, fucking Brad. Five stars, more of this sort of thing please (and a VOTE, obviously).

Glenn Case - as always with your stuff, this sounds really good. I like that thick synth bass a lot. It doesn't really hook me in like your best stuff does though, I think I prefer the verse to the chorus and you use the words "liquid starshine" so often that they kinda lose all meaning (if they ever had any). I do like the general vibe.

Glennny - the a cappella stuff is pretty fun, but the lead vocal feels a little shaky in comparison to the excellent backing stuff, especially on the bridge. It's amusing to me that even in a mostly a cappella song you can't resist a guitar solo!

Hoblit - every time I hear this one I really enjoy the first verse but then it just kinda repeats without too much variation and I get a little bored by the end. The melody is good, maybe the chorus needs something to elevate it from the verse? I did appreciate the shouty backing vocals when they popped in, but on the whole this is just a pretty good song that didn't quite make it into my favourites.

Hot Pink Halo - this is unusual and stands out from the pack, and I enjoyed it each time but it never really stuck around in my head for long. It sounds like a solid album track in the middle of a bunch of singles, maybe.

Jerkatorium - good to see you back in the fight! I was initially slightly disappointed that this lacks the fuzzy power-pop vibes that most of my favourite Jerkatorium songs have, but this is a bit of a grower. The lyrics are great (I especially like that second verse with the clever number-based wordplay, I'm a sucker for that stuff) and I like the harmonies and honky-tonk piano. Vote!

Kyle Rogers - nice guitar work and I like the layered vocals, they give this an extra dimension that elevates it from standard G&G fare. The shift up to that high note is a bit overdone, maybe - it starts to feel a bit like a gimmick. I quite like this though, and found it bouncing around inside my head the other day which is a good sign.

miscellaneous owl - this is great, the fuzziest song I've heard from you and you do it REALLY well. The bass sounds good, the chords switch up when I don't expect them to and the melodies are killer as always. Vote!

Paco del Stinko - I love those retro backing vocals at the start, and the jazzy guitar riff. The rest of the song isn't quite as memorable for me, unfortunately, although the sort of chugging / stomping rhythm that comes in towards the end is pretty great. One of those "I like many parts of this song but as a whole it doesn't quite click" songs.

Phillipso - cool riff, and the backwards effects work well without getting too overwhelming. On the first few listens I found the transition between verse and chorus a little jarring but it grew on me, helped by the cool instrumental pre-chorus. The big harmonised "liquid starshine" is great. Vote!

Phlebia - I love your lo-fi drum sound so much. This is slightly out of my comfort zone genre-wise but I really like it, more so each time I hear it. It has a really great driving energy to it. Vote!

Pigfarmer Jr - this is enjoyable and there are a few good lines in there (I really like that chicken / kazoo lyric) but the vocal timing / lyrical rhythms are particularly clunky, which is a shame as otherwise your voice sounds good in this higher register, and the vocal doubling later on is effective. The skunk line does feel a bit clunky compared to the inspired weirdness of the duck!

Third Cat - that fizzy, distorted pad / heavily effected guitar sound (whatever it is) is great, and definitely fits the title well. I love the first half of this, the second doesn't feel quite as well developed - when the fuzzier guitar kicks in towards the end it doesn't quite seem to fit. On the whole I like it quite a bit.

Tim Hinkle - this is well done but doesn't quite do it for me like your song from the last fight did. The melodic organ / guitar parts seem to be fighting with the vocal a little, especially the guitar later on.

Tron Air - I think this is my favourite Tron Air song so far, and the various synthy / percussive sounds really sound watery and sunny in an extremely satisfying way. There's a LOT going on in the mix again and it does feel a bit overstuffed at times, again I feel like the song would be better if there was a little more breathing room. But the Beach Boys-esque harmonies are great. Vote!

Vom Vorton - I rotated through about six different genres while writing this, eventually settling on dystopian synth-rap at the last minute for some reason. I have attempted to rap a few times in the past and I think this might be my most successful attempt yet, which isn't to say it's actually good. The synth solo was actually played on guitar and converted to MIDI via a little electronic box that I bought recently to mess around with. Pretty fun. I was unsure whether to tighten up the harmonies on the chorus or not, the wonkiness of them kinda fit the odd vibe of the song I thought, but they're definitely pretty rough!
Post Reply