Don't bring me down with your (High and Higher reviews)

Discuss upcoming, current, and previous song fights.
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Pigfarmer Jr
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Don't bring me down with your (High and Higher reviews)

Post by Pigfarmer Jr »

But you're gonna write 'em, right?
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Re: Don't bring me down with your (High and Higher reviews)

Post by Pigfarmer Jr »

Please post your lyric in the appropriate thread: viewtopic.php?f=5&t=11881
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Re: Don't bring me down with your (High and Higher reviews)

Post by Lunkhead »

Songs posted!
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Re: Don't bring me down with your (High and Higher reviews)

Post by sleepysilverdoor »

Where's Glenn Case? Also top three, sans reviews so far: Robyn, Brown Word, and Pigfarmer.
"There's a lot to be said about a full-on frontal assault on the ear drums" - Pigfarmer Jr.
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Re: Don't bring me down with your (High and Higher reviews)

Post by Lunkhead »

I didn't receive a song from Glenn. Should I have? If I get one I can post it as a late entry.
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sleepysilverdoor
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Re: Don't bring me down with your (High and Higher reviews)

Post by sleepysilverdoor »

I just saw he posted lyrics.
"There's a lot to be said about a full-on frontal assault on the ear drums" - Pigfarmer Jr.
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Re: Don't bring me down with your (High and Higher reviews)

Post by Lunkhead »

Glenn's song is up now. Thanks for the heads up about it!
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Re: Don't bring me down with your (High and Higher reviews)

Post by Lunkhead »

Mandibles are in the fight now too.
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Re: Don't bring me down with your (High and Higher reviews)

Post by Cybronica »

Thank you!
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Re: Don't bring me down with your (High and Higher reviews)

Post by Enter It In The Art Show »

Just came to say that Sweeney Toad got my vote. I assume this is formerly MC Wreckshin? Really liked this, man. Also voted for Lichen Throat. Sorry for no real reviews, if I do a fight soon, I'll come through with full reviews. Good fight this week, though!
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Re: Don't bring me down with your (High and Higher reviews)

Post by SweeneyToad »

Enter It In The Art Show wrote:
Mon Aug 24, 2020 11:59 pm
Just came to say that Sweeney Toad got my vote. I assume this is formerly MC Wreckshin? Really liked this, man. Also voted for Lichen Throat. Sorry for no real reviews, if I do a fight soon, I'll come through with full reviews. Good fight this week, though!
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Re: Don't bring me down with your (High and Higher reviews)

Post by crumpart »

Gonna try and write some reviews this morning.
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the panna cotta army
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Re: Don't bring me down with your (High and Higher reviews)

Post by the panna cotta army »

Spontaneous 3 word reviews - don't take too seriously

My Social Uniform - Derivative disco compendium
Mandibles - Drummy, theatrical unfulfillment
Phlebia - Bangy, autotuned verbosity
Shade and Honey - Slapbacked, stompy nostalgia
Pink Halo - mundanity, unresolved, Sprout-esque
Balance Lost - Plinky, Clashy, histrionic
Sweeney Toad - Cryptic, bitcrushed tantrum
Brown Word & Big Whine - Squelchy, scattergun exotica
Pigfarmer - Cymbal surplus, Stipe-ish
Robyn Mackenzie - Harmonised, hippy darkness
Glenn Case - Succinct, Logical, Wurly
Lichen Throat - Twangy, unsynchronized randomness

A good fight. A couple of songs I loved the feel of and 3 or so more that impressed in other ways
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Re: Don't bring me down with your (High and Higher reviews)

Post by WreckdoMelle »

In order heard. It's been a loooong time since I've done reviews, and have never felt I had the words to adequately provide feedback, but here I go sounding off, putting in my dues :)

Phlebia - I cannot really understand what you are saying in the verse but it sounds auto-tuned, which I like along with the metallic sounding drums. This is kind of aggressive but not too much so. The bridge sounded cool, but maybe the vox needed to be higher (and higher?) in some places.

Pigfarmer Jr. - Nice intro, like the verse, the chord progression, music and vox, it just works for me. The drums seems to be a little more in the left ear when the cymbals come in in the chorus and here and there (my headphones/ears?). You have a great guitar tone on the solos, and overall really.

Robyn McKenzie - Right off I like the opening chord progression. You have a lovely voice. I"m a big fan of doubled vox, especially + harmonies in the chorus.

Mandibles - An impeccable entry - vox clear as a bell, nice piano tone, everything mixed well. Cymbals seemed more in the left side - could be my headphones/hearing, noticed that happening elsewhere.

Balance Lost - Neat chipping guitars, and alternating balance. The bass is very present, which is something I appreciate. I like the high - high- high part toward the end, very bouncing and literally going high and higher.

The Pannacotta Army - Very full, deep sound to the music. Your voice is so pleasant. Good percussion on this, interesting textures, goes well with the string pads running thru. Nice use of open spaces. This has a lot of geography to it, if that makes sense, its never repetitious.

Shade & Honey - Mixed slightly low compared to the other tunes. Toe-tapper. The vox are wide/doubled - sounds cool. Also dig the space theme/feel, good choice of synths for this.

Glenn Case - Interesting chord progressions here, always welcome. This too is a toe-tapper. The mixture of electric and acoustic guitars is a good combo for this tune, offset nicely with the keyboards.

Brown Word and the Big Whine - I just realized in all these reviews so far, I haven't managed to guess anyone's movie. Admittedly I had a tough time with this, I had created the music without any plan or having a real theme for the vox; many times both come about at the same time for me, and I also didn't follow my usual writing methods. I felt I hadn't done the best job on it but saw in comments at least one person liked it, so that's a great uplift.

My Social Uniform - Immediately this fits in with stuff they'd play on KUTX here in Austin. That is to say this is some pretty top-notch sounding music. Well performed, well mixed. It got my booty moving, that's for sure. Dig the bass a lot.

Lichen Throat - read in comments about the curious time-signature and I enjoy hearing it pulled off. I like the lowness of your voice. Nice breakdown. The juxtaposition of the drums (programming them must've been interesting) and the acoustic works for me.

Sweeney Toad - A little different than usual! I love this kind of chaotic feeling and the crazy expressiveness in the vox. Short and sweet unlike the ordeal described.

Hot Pink Halo - Another movie I was able to guess :) Enjoying the dreamy quality to this and the occasional textures (whatever that little wooden sound is that I hear now and again - it's lovely).
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Pigfarmer Jr
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Re: Don't bring me down with your (High and Higher reviews)

Post by Pigfarmer Jr »

the panna cotta army wrote:
Sat Aug 29, 2020 10:15 am
Pigfarmer - Cymbal surplus
WreckdoMelle wrote:
Sun Aug 30, 2020 10:36 am
Pigfarmer Jr. - The drums seems to be a little more in the left ear when the cymbals come in in the chorus and here and there (my headphones/ears?).
Aye. I'm gonna go back and fix the cymbals... probably change it to a more mid panned ride instead of splash. Or something. But it missed the mark for what I was going for and I should have revisited before submitting. Thanks for all the comments.
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Re: Don't bring me down with your (High and Higher reviews)

Post by lichenthroat »

Balance Lost—The guitar sounds super crisp. Quality of execution is high. All the instruments sound clear and distinct. I think the song could benefit from more exuberance at some point. Nice work overall.

Brown Word and the Big Whine—I like the steel drum or whatever that is. The rest of the song seems a little lacking in melody until it bursts forth in the last third, which was my favorite section.

Glenn Case—I feel like this needs a double-time section somewhere. The interaction among all the instruments is interesting and done well. The chorus, with its screamy guitar, is a highlight.

Hot Pink Halo—I like the effect on your vocal. I think the rhythm needs more punch in the low frequencies. I liked this more each time I listened to it. At first I thought there wasn’t enough variation, but now I’m not so sure. I continue to be impressed by your creativity and subtlety.

Lichen Throat—Before I had decided on a lyrical take, my wife remarked that the title sounded like a Warren Miller ski movie, so I decided to write about Warren Miller. I doubt the lyrics make much sense to anyone who isn’t familiar with Warren Miller, which includes almost everybody. For a song written in 11/8, supposedly in Phrygian mode, and by me, this doesn’t sound as weird as I would have expected. The unusual rhythm made it hard for me to get the timing right (obviously), even though each vocal line has plenty of space.

Mandibles—This is a great use of your vocal precision; the sparse arrangement and relatively subdued atmosphere allow your vocal clarity to both shine and sit well in the mix. The song seems well-conceived and executed, overall.

My Social Uniform—You’re back with another impeccably produced song in a genre I usually don’t like. Your ability to get this made and polished in the limited time available for the fight is incredibly impressive.

The Pannacotta Army—The musicianship is excellent. Nice melodies, too. Nothing to complain about and lots to like. The use of dynamics is great.

Phlebia—Once again, you’ve made a song that I would expect to hate, but that I actually like. In this case, I think your vocal delivery and the vocal melody are great and transcend the genre. The rapid-fire rhymes really enhance the song.

Pigfarmer Jr—Crank up the bass a little. And those repeating cymbals seem excessive. Otherwise, I like this. The melodies are good, and the vocal meshes well with the guitar. The lyrics are among your better offerings, and the guitar solo sounds great.

Robyn Mackenzie—I dig the dreaminess. The guitar playing and chord progression are great. I kind of wish there was a faster section somewhere, though. Nice ending. By the way, I loved your entry for Please Scream Inside Your Heart.

Shade & Honey—I don’t know how to describe this, but I like it. This feels well written. The rhythm has a nice sense of inevitability, which works well with the overall aesthetic of the song.

Sweeney Toad—I like the intro and the beginning of each verse. Lyrics are funny. Parts are too cacophonous for my taste, but I think you nailed the concept you were aiming for.
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Re: Don't bring me down with your (High and Higher reviews)

Post by crumpart »

Balance Lost:
Out of the gate this has strong XTC vibes, which is always a plus in my book (specifically Senses Working Overtime). I think the jumps through the octave in the chorus work well. I feel like the melody gets lost a bit in the verses, but I enjoyed this overall.

Brown Word and the Big Whine:
Is this the week where I keep hearing other songs in people’s instrumentation? This one immediately took me back to Devil Woman by Cliff Richard, which is a song I’d forgotten existed. Maybe Devil Woman meets Chrissy Amphlett. I think your mixing skills are improving dramatically. There’s a lot going on in this, but it’s pretty fun.

Glenn Case:
I went to look up who this was when it came on, and then I realised that would be a wasted move because it can only be Glenn Case. Probably my favourite of your songs for a while. Everything sounds good, and the energy is enjoyable. I find myself not really invested in what you’re singing about, but that doesn’t take away from my enjoyment of the song.

Hot Pink Halo:
Toshiro and I had an equipment shakeup this week. In the middle level of our house there are two rooms, and when we moved here in February we were going to set up the bigger room as my art studio and use the smaller room for music. Then the pandemic happened and he’s been working from home since March, so the temporary recording setup in my studio had become more permanent. This past few weeks though we bought a new piece of mixing equipment and tidied up the work machinery in his room a bit, so we moved the preamp and audio interface back into his room. I still can’t record there most of the time though, because he’s still working in there, so we bought a Scarlett audio interface for my computer that I can use for recording and video production stuff, a second pair of headphones for recording and mixing so that we can both be doing stuff at the same time, and I also got a new guitar several months in advance of Christmas. So, basically, this track was the first I’ve recorded and mixed on an entirely new setup. I did it pretty quickly as well, and overall I’m really happy with it. One of my goals recently has been to try and introduce some change and variety between song sections, and I also paid a bit more attention to melody on this one. In the film everything kind of mumbles along and then the action culminates on a bridge, so I tried to do the same with the song because I am a giant nerd. Chord progressions were determined via random number generator because Jeff Who Lives At Home is all about fate and chance, and all of the lyrics bar the two verses are direct quotes from the opening monologue of the film. I also experimented with putting a capo on my guitar but leaving the high E string out. I random number generated where to put the capo and got a 5, but it sounded terrible there so I shifted it down to the fourth fret. It was a fun song to make, and I also thoroughly enjoyed watching the film again. It’s so good. Cried like a little tiny baby again.

Lichen Throat:
I’m quite enjoying the rhythms and your instrumentation here. The delivery of the lyrics feels a bit chaotic though, like you’re not quite comfortable with the time signature (except for the “high and higher” line, which is sitting really well), but that’s fair enough because it is a crazy time signature. I enjoyed the understated vibe. I like the line (and the delivery of) “you’ve worked your whole life to become a success overnight”.

Mandibles:
This immediately has very Musical Theatre vibes. It’s feel reminds me a lot of the song “Ring of Keys” from Fun Home. Your vocals feel a little low in the mix, but that being said, I can clearly understand everything you’re singing. The lyrical take is a good angle on the prompt, and I love the ending. I know this goes counter to your whole entire training, so please forgive me, but I’d like to hear you approach the vocal delivery with some more pop style techniques (what you’d probably refer to as “bad habits to avoid at all costs!”) sometime. That being said, I do think the stage-type delivery works for this particular song. I would be interested in hearing how your voice sounds with more mixing techniques common to pop though, like doubling, extreme type filters, an exciter plugin maybe?

My Social Uniform:
Big disco fan right here. This is super professional sounding. I love the crybaby guitar (guitar?) and also all the other sounds. The lyrics are pretty cliché, but it’s such a fun song that it’s a minor quibble.

The Pannacotta Army:
As always this is super well made and thoroughly enjoyable. It feels very much like it would be the second song on a credit roll at the end of a film. I would have made it a little shorter personally, but I did enjoy listening.

Phlebia:
I think this is probably about the same length as the PCA song, but this one doesn’t feel it. There’s a lot of stuff in there but you’ve made it feel engaging rather than overwhelming, so good job! Enough of the lyrics stand out and are interesting that I’m intrigued to go have a read for context.

Pigfarmer Jr:
On the first listen this was absolutely one of my favourites. I didn’t really notice the cymbal overload then because the rest of the song is really good, but now that a few people have pointed it out, they do stand out. The lyrics are really well crafted and delivered well, and the chorus is simple and memorable.

Robyn Mackenzie:
Structurally this is really strong. I love the crunchy guitar. I’m not sure if it’s panning or something that’s happening with compression on the mix, but your main vocal sounds much stronger in my right ear, which is disconcerting. I’m also not a big fan of the way you’ve processed your (very good) voice. I’m not sure if I’m hearing your room in the recording, or if it’s a choice you’re making in the mix, but in all your songs so far your voice has sounded tinny and kind of hollow to my ears, which is a little frustrating because I think you’re one of the stronger singers here. As far as the actual song goes though, this is great.

Shade & Honey:
In comparison to Robyn’s song, your voice is very much sounding mixed to the left. There’s the double in my right ear but I’d really like to hear this with the main vocals straight down the middle. I really like all those fun experimental sounds; they add good texture to the song.

Sweeney Toad:
I don’t know if you rewatched 127 Hours before making this song, but the sound mixing in that film is so bananas. Danny Boyle is one of my favourite directors, and the attention paid to sound design in his films is one of the reasons why (see also Darren Aronofsky). The sound design in this film in particular, is, in fact, so phenomenal that it caused my husband, Toshiro, to announce that he needed a minute during the hand scene and was going to get a glass of water. He was taking a long time, so eventually I went to the kitchen and found him passed out on the floor, having cut his head open on a cabinet. He’s since purchased the film on Blu-Ray, but strangely all these years later and we still haven’t rewatched it. So, um, that’s where your song took me. And just to make it even for sharing that story about Toshiro, when I was half way through writing my reviews today, I got up and went downstairs to get lunch, wasn't paying attention and slipped down the last three stairs, hitting my head hard enough on the wall to make a slight dent in the plaster. I appear to be fine but dealt with it by crying and watching five episodes of Schitt’s Creek in a row.
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Re: Don't bring me down with your (High and Higher reviews)

Post by crumpart »

I forgot to say, I really liked all of the songs in this fight and had a hard time choosing who to vote for. Well done everyone!
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Re: Don't bring me down with your (High and Higher reviews)

Post by pauley g »

Glenn Case - nice vocal that compliments the vibe well, well mixed, I can hear all the parts and they gel nicely but everything is clear. Nice harmonies. The lazy vibe this puts off musically is great and I love the lead guitar tone and how it vamps after the solo. this just really works together well, vocals, bgv, percussion...tastefully done and another great entry from you Glenn!

Balance Lost - Exceptional guitar playing...very difficult to not hear XTC and I know I'm not the first to say this. The prechorus and chorus are catchy and fantastic, I would like to hear this kind of definition in the verse melody and you'd really have something! This is very close to being really special, maybe a little more oomph in spots, add a little more variety between verse and chorus, then upload to Spotify. BTW, your vocals are always fun and expressive.

Phlebia - wow! First thought, if it's not a deal breaker, maybe try a playthrough with no distortion on the bass and it might just be enough to let the melodic elements sing through better. Well written and arranged, kinda inspires me to punch something. vocal work is great. breakdown is great. This whole thing is great.

My Social Uniform - This is mine. Yeah, disco. It occurred to me while on lockdown that I really only want to write songs that I would want to play live and this is essentially me. Well, somewhere between funk and disco. The lyrics were written by my wife and I edited them to fit, if this disqualifies me, so be it. She was writing about how it's been for me as a gigging cover musician in the age of Covid and she captured it better than I could have explained it! I appreciate the comments about it so far and I'm sincerely glad some of you have enjoyed it!

Brown Word and the Big Whine - I'm a sucker for anything remotely resembling dubstep bass! love the editing, there is a lot going on musically but again, nothing is fighting. Breakdown is pretty awesome! The only thing I can think of to try to improve would be to get the percussion elements (specifically kick) to stick out more but that's not saying it's bad as it is, I'm just grasping at anything. Well done.

Robyn Mackenzie - One of the reasons I love music is because of the journey the song can take you on and this takes me somewhere. This is beautiful and my favorite of this fight. Lyrics, melody, arrangement, all really well done. The chorus has stuck in my head after only a few listens and every time I catch myself humming it, it makes me smile. Only one minor complaint - the bgv on the back end of the chorus is just a bit pitchy and it's mildly distracting. I give you those are tough harmonies to hit and they're very close. Fix those and this song goes from great to fantastic.

Sweeney Toad - Is it possible to be terrible and wonderful at the same time? I honestly don't know what to think of this. It's just a bit to incoherent musically for my ears but that doesn't mean I didn't like it at the same time. Sweeney, you have folded my brain in half, kudos. I'm probably going to have to vote for you because of that.

Lichen Throat - Dude I love listening to your voice! seems like you lose the beat occasionally but how could you not? I would try to get your vocal to sit in the mix better but overall, production is good. as the song progresses, it seems like the melody becomes more detached from the arrangement.

Pigfarmer Jr. - love the chord arrangement and how the melody rides on them. You've taken some heat for the cymbals this fight, my suggestion is instead of remixing them, try carving them into a whisper with an eq? Other than that, this is a great entry! the doubled guitars are awesome and well played!

Mandibles - GREAT vocal performance and harmonies. Love the lyric and the chord changes in the chorus. Mix is super clean and simple and effective arrangement. I would like to hear some different instrumentation from verse to chorus just to make the chorus pop out a little better.

Shade and Honey - digging how the intro rolls up. vocal doubling is well done and adds an interesting retro feel to it. Guitar performances are great and I love your tones. wishing the guitar sound effects around 2:00 were more pronounced in the mix, they're very cool but didn't stand out enough! This is solid, fun, and an easy listen!

Hot Pink Halo - I'm a fan of the drum programming! Sometimes it seems like you lose the melody occasionally at the end of the verse? You have a very nice vocal sound and mix, just feels like it loses it's way occasionally. How many vocal takes do you do? I've had some pretty good results singing the lead vocal a few times, make an MP3, hop in my car and driving while singing along. Then going back and doing more takes. I always get a stronger and more confident vocal. When I don't have enough time to do that, I always dislike my vocal! I think this can be improved and it deserves to be the best you can get it, it's a good song!

The Pannacotta Army - another quality entry. mix is professional grade. wow, strings are very tastefully done and add to the overall vibe without being distracting. Great chorus, you do a wonderful job musically of building up to it, taking off with the chorus, then moving back into the verse, your transitions are spot on. I also appreciate the subtle instrumental changes to add variety and spice. Breakdown at 3:00 to buildup is my favorite part, there's always a level of restraint here, like the song wants to blow up but you take it right to that line and never let it cross adding some level of tension that makes this song really special.

There is so much unbelievable creativity and talent in this group. All the songs deserve a vote. You all make me want to be a better songwriter and that's why I appreciate this community so much.
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SweeneyToad
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Re: Don't bring me down with your (High and Higher reviews)

Post by SweeneyToad »

lichenthroat - this song is pretty cool because it's basically the new birthday song for 2020. From now on this should be the official birthday song that everyone sing's at your birthday party. Let's make it happen, lichenthroat2020.

brown word - this is like more electropunk style then what i'm use to from you and i really like it. you should incorporate more electro sounds in your music more often, it sounds really cool. for some reason this kind of reminded me of a nirvana song, like something that would have been on their first album, i'm not really sure why though, but anyways, i really liked this!

mandibles - this immediately made me think of an 80's tv show theme song. like if there was a show that was like Perfect Strangers with the lead characters being women instead of men this would be the theme song for the show. Now I wish they would make that show except it still takes place in the 80's. I would probably watch it and I'd enjoy listening to your theme song every TGIF.

pigfarmer jr - you really do have a niel young vibe with most of your songs and that's pretty cool. this song sounds like if neil young did something a little poppier than i'm used to but that's not a bad thing. This sounds like something I'd probably hear on an alternative rock station in the 90's. pretty solid song!

my social uniform - this is very disco style. this brings me back to the days when i worked as a dishwasher at my brother's jazz club in the 60's and he sent me up to columbia to run drugs for him and I ended up getting stuck there for 10 years. I unfortunately developed a drug problem while I was there but when I got back the club had totally changed into a disco club! your song reminds me of all the songs they would play, so yeah your song brings me a lot of nostalgia, thanks!

pancotta army - this song is pretty relaxing, has a real nice feel good vibe. then it changes up a bit into effing things up, like these lyrics are kind of depressing but the song sounds really nice and relaxing, i really dig that contrast. once again, like last week, i could hear this song being in a movie, probably some indie movie i would say. you should try to submit your stuff to thing like that! oh yeah that just reminded me of the challenge, was this song actually about a movie?

sweeney toad - when i first saw the title and challenge i thought i was going to make a stoner rap song about half baked or cheech and chong or something. but for some reason my brain kept going to the james franco movie, so instead of fighting it i just went with it and this is the really weird song that came out. it has also inspired me to make a series of really short songs each titled after a celebrity, i now have a song called tom hanks, and another one called uma thurman, i'm going to call the album Banned in America Volume 1. So thanks for that songfight!

glenn case - it's really cool to hear this song because i got to see you making a bit of it on fb live. i like the final product! it came out good! really dope solo at the end there! this was a pretty solid and fun song.

phlebia - this makes me think of a train going really fast at first. then this song gets crazy, like the vocal delivery is really crazy. i like your percussion, it kind of sounds like your banging on metal trash cans. i'm not exactly sure of your every thing you're saying but it sounds really cool. So was this one about a movie? I guess i should go in the lyric thread and figure it out lol

hot pink halo - once again this has such a raincoats vibe and i really dig that, your voice just really reminds me of hers. this song has some really nice sounds that mesh well together. sometimes the instruments sound slightly out of tune or slightly off key but ony for like one note here and there, i'm not sure if you did that on purpose but i like it. mac demarco does that and it sounds similar to what you're doing here. i know of the movie your singing about but i've never seen it, i should probably watch that one. really nice song, you should try to send it to the director and see if they'll give it a listen!

balance lost - this is really cool, it kind of reminds me of something that would fit somewhere between pinback and her space holiday. like I could see you on tour with them back in the early 2000s. i used to love all that music back in the day, it's nice to hear people still making stuff like this, good stuff!

shade and honey - this is really nice, i just wish your vocals were a little higher in the mix, especially in the beginning of the song. this song has a nice catchiness overall and i like how it has a little baby pyscedellic trip in the middle, i would have liked to hear it get just a little bit more intense there, but only slightly would have been just right.

robyn mackenzie - i like the intro riff, catchy and nice. your vocals are nice, almost hypnotizing, but maybe i'm just getting tired. i enjoy the verses more the chorus on this for some reason. I feel like the chorus maybe was just a tad bit too loud, I could just be being nitpicky though. overall, still a good song though!
Sober GF: I can't explain why but I hated it

Toby Rok: Sweeeney Toad...I can’t explain why, but I like it...

sweeneytoad.bandcamp.com
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sleepysilverdoor
Mean Street
Posts: 630
Joined: Wed Jun 30, 2010 11:02 pm
Instruments: Basically if I don't have to blow through it it's fair game.
Recording Method: FL Studio/Tascam DP-006
Submitting as: Phlebia, mostly.
Location: Atlanta-ish.

Re: Don't bring me down with your (High and Higher reviews)

Post by sleepysilverdoor »

SweeneyToad wrote:
Tue Sep 01, 2020 7:22 pm
phlebia - this makes me think of a train going really fast at first. then this song gets crazy, like the vocal delivery is really crazy. i like your percussion, it kind of sounds like your banging on metal trash cans. i'm not exactly sure of your every thing you're saying but it sounds really cool. So was this one about a movie? I guess i should go in the lyric thread and figure it out lol some reason. I feel like the chorus maybe was just a tad bit too loud, I could just be being nitpicky though. overall, still a good song though!
Metal trash cans? Nah! It's just my snare drum tuned to be rather resonant and ringy. And then I compressed the drum track quite a bit.

As for the lyrics: nah, I was just feeling really defeatist and pessimistic and needed to blow off steam so I wrote out a heavily rhymed doomer rant...in rap format! I was going for a Sean Paul vibe flow-wise, minus the talk about sexy girls lol.
"There's a lot to be said about a full-on frontal assault on the ear drums" - Pigfarmer Jr.
User avatar
sleepysilverdoor
Mean Street
Posts: 630
Joined: Wed Jun 30, 2010 11:02 pm
Instruments: Basically if I don't have to blow through it it's fair game.
Recording Method: FL Studio/Tascam DP-006
Submitting as: Phlebia, mostly.
Location: Atlanta-ish.

Re: Don't bring me down with your (High and Higher reviews)

Post by sleepysilverdoor »

Strong fight! Lots of atypical time signatures this go-round. I'm pleased.

Balance Lost: Well the guitar riff is pretty neat and I like the sort of off-kilter time signature. Not too often I hear 14/4 on here. Though it’s kind of interesting it’s this week cause Lichen Throat went for 11/8 and I kept on throwing 6/4 measures into mine randomly so it’s a good week for non-standard time signatures. I dig the muted picking that comes in as a muted rhythm element in the second verse. Something about the bridge feels a little sparse, I would like it hear it be fleshed out a little bit more? But yeah this is a bop. Higher being on the highest note is fitting and works well with the title. There’s something about this that feels a little underdeveloped but I can’t place exactly what it is? Anyway, still a pretty good number, I enjoy it!

Brown Word and the Big Whine: The guitar tone and wonkiness of this remind me a lot of The Residents, especially that intensely chorus’d guitar and the bomp, bomp, bomp bass-line brings to mind like Duck Stab or Commercial album or something. I also know you’re a fan. Anyway, this is one of my favorites so far. The synth work and its random wompwomps and the abrupt changes and squelchy synths are just fun. And the ooh-ahhs reminds me a bit of a song I did like 13 years ago. There’s a whole lot of interesting lines thrown in here. I’m not sure I know what you’re talking about the whole song but that’s okay cause I had a blast listening to this.

Glenn Case - Can you write a bad song? I can’t never tell if you’re legitimately a great songwriter or if you just have masterful production and a great singing voice and know your way around jazzy chord progressions and atypical time signatures.Like I never get any of your songs stuck in my head, but I always think they’re great when I hear them...so who knows. Could be my taste. You always remind me a little of Steely Dan, who also fits that category and I know they’re objectively great so maybe you’re as good as I suspect you are despite my taste. Does being good at those things translate to being a great songwriter? I guess it probably does and maybe it’s just my “taste axis” doesn’t always align, heh. I hear 6/4 for a good chunk of this. And it really works! It’s well executed. And sounds like a Gleen Case song. Guitar solo rips. Killing it! You impress me.

Hot Pink Halo: As I feel like I’ve said on so many of your songs this year, you’ve gradually been getting better. Your production is getting better, and I really like that thumb-piano type synth that you’ve been using throughout this, it sounds nice. I would still ilke to hear a bit more rhythmic complexity in the guitar..and that last chord just seems unresolved to me. Lyrically this is pretty good. Man I haven’t seen Signs in forever. Like 20 years forever. But when I play Animal Crossing New Horizons I have a carpet in my house that is a massive crop circle pattern. Crop circles are cool.

Lichen Throat: So you’ve been on this kind of bizarre synth-pop, darkwave sounding...I don’t even know exactly how to describe it lately. But it works, something about all those kind of retro-ey sounds are working well with your outsider charm. I know you’ve said you’re just trying to write indie rock but don’t know how, but you’re gradually honing in on a distinct sound that I’ve come to legitimately enjoy. Can I relate to this song? Maybe not necessarily, as I’ve never been skiing, but it’s a cool take on the title. And the specific images like cooking frozen mackerel and the telephoto lens bit are great. Do you ever write songs outside of SongFight?

Mandibles - Well, this is a lot less repetitive than your last entry. I saw one of the other reviewers specifically mention that this had a musical theatre vibe to it and I can’t help but agree...which on the downside runs headlong into a particular style that I really don’t like at all. Like the chorus in this has these chords and this kind of rhythm to it that I can’t fault really, but it’s just clashing with my taste. Vocals are impeccable as always though, even though I don’t really like the song. That descending chord progression right towards the end sounds really cool though, albeit a little...familiar. I can’t place it though!

My Social Uniform: Okay, so sure, this ticks a lot of the boxes for kind of derivative disco type stuff. But you know what it’s catchy and I love the hand claps and the slap bass, even though I’m pretty sure it’s a keyboard or synth or whatever. I keep wanting some dude with a Kool-aid man voice to pop in and go “OH YEAHHH!!!” as a background ad-lib periodically. Like this song in general doesn’t deviate much from its obvious inspiration. The breakdown in the back-half reminds me of Staying Alive quite a bit. There’s elements of this that kind of remind me of Street Songs. I will say I liked your last entry a little bit more, but this still slaps and your nu-disco is a welcome addition to the fight. I wanna do a house remix of you. But I don’t cause I ain’t got the time.

The Pannacotta Army: Curious that you of all people would be the one who would mine pretty much the exact same of “humans destroy everything in the name of progress” theme that I went with, albeit with a completely different vibe. I can’t help but love it just for that cause apparently we’re feeling the same vibes these days...screw the religion of progress and its absurd grip on our collective psyche. Personally I could have stood for this to end right after that last chorus right around the 3 minute mark -- everything else after that feels a bit superfluous, though I still enjoy it. As usual, well-composed, and a memorable tune from the fight.

Phlebia: So I’m not entirely sure what the inspiration was here -- a bunch of things really. The frenetic chugging octave-led bass was loosely based on a club track I threw together for a rave like 10 years ago when I was living with a club promoter. The chorus is kind of Linkin-Parkey. And verses are essentially my take on like a mid-2000s Sean Paul style only with out the talk of “ohh pretty gurl” or the Jamaican accent or the cheerfulness and instead musing about social collapse and the end of the world. I was not in a good mindset when I wrote out this lyric sheet -- it was super cathartic. I think I’m feeling better now. Production-wise I couldn’t quite get all of the elements to quite mush and in hindsight there’s a bit of clipping in the chorus. Maybe I’ll re-record it at some point cause I had a lot of fun playing this one...the drum part gets me all sweaty! Oh, and I happen to have an autographed copy of the “This is fine” comic strip hung on the wall right by my front door. It’s inspiring.

Pigfarmer Jr: This may be my favorite Pigfarmer Jr song, The chorus has a great melody, and I like the chord progression you used for it...though I kind of wish that there was a little bit less crash, cymbal, it’s a little imposing and kind of distracts from the kind of cool s oft rock vibe you have going. I like the guitar solo and the chord progression you decided to go with for it. But yeah, this one has a pretty good melody. It leans kind of into a different kind of angsty vibe I usually see from you. Especially after that super sweet love song we got, what was it, last week, the week before? Time blurs together. So many fights. Anyway, this was pretty rad.

Robyn Mackenzie: Speaking of rad -- you’re rad. Really the main things that I could criticize about this are that the eq-ing and compression and panning of that lead rhythm guitar just feel slightly off to me. Like it just sounds...kind of thin? Dadgum this chorus is really doing it for me. Something about the chorus is giving me like mid-late 90s Sneaker Pimps or Portishead vibes despite the fact that the instrumentation isn’t indicating that sort of thing at all. I love what you did with the lyrics...for this prompt, a self-destructive addiction-based song should have been an obvious theme but you’re the only one who really ran with it. If you haven’t heard the song Medicated by Jucifer, you may like it...it’s a lot more grungy than this but has a very similar vibe, both tonally and lyrically. This is probably my favorite this week.

Shade & Honey: The slapback on the vocals has a little too long of a delay time and it back everything just sound a little slap dash. But I like the kind of head-noddy rhythm you’ve got going on here. Is your b-string out of tune on your guitar? Something sounds a little off in that rhythm guitar track. I love the synth voicings that you came up with in this.The melody is extremely simple but it works with the general vibe of the song, which I keep nodding my head to. Maybe the sleepiness and slight red wine buzz I’m writing my reviews through is responsible for me vibing to this. I wish this were maybe like 5 bpm slower...then it’d be really groovy.

Sweeney Toad: You must be feeling better these days, your energy level has been way up the past few fights. I can’t believe you wrote a song about the dude who got stuck in the mountains and had to cut his own arm off to survive. That’s pretty hardcore. Though admittedly this is technically about the movie about the guy who cut his own arm off, so maybe it’s one degree removed. Still cool. Way blown out production-wise, watch your levels! I miss the SMW samples lol.

Favorites:
Robyn
Pannacotta
Brown Word

Honorable Mention:
Sweeney
Glenn
Lichen
Pig
"There's a lot to be said about a full-on frontal assault on the ear drums" - Pigfarmer Jr.
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