It's a bird, It's a review thread (Look at the Sky Reviews)

Discuss upcoming, current, and previous song fights.
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ken
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It's a bird, It's a review thread (Look at the Sky Reviews)

Post by ken »

Up, Up and review!
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i would just like to remind everyone that Ken eats kittens - blue lang
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Re: It's a bird, It's a review thread (Look at the Sky Reviews)

Post by nyjm »

Listened to on Shuffle; reviews in alphabetical order for ease of reading.

Overall note: why did so many people go for the big, majestic atmospherics? Ho-hum, cliché.

KEY : +++ (good) --- (bad) /// (indifferent)

Ajl Anderson - vote for overall musical excellence
+++ folky vibe +++
+++ backing vox on bridge +++
--- 5:48 is too long; shave this by 1:30 and it'll be a very sweet tune ---

backward binoculars
--- look Ma: I have a keyboard and I can count to four! ---
+++ vox harmonies +++

Baker
--- spoken word ---
--- get the mic out of your mouth and stop popping those plosives ---
/// nice change about 1:00 to guitar and piano ///
--- singing: nasal, pitchy and out of tune ---

The Dinnertime Boys
/// song? song? ...song?... ///
--- nope ---

Elaine DiMasi
/// your voice doesn't mesh well with the instrumentation; it might be a matter of your natural timbre and the FX (or rather the lack thereof) ///
+++ abou ou ou out it! +++
--- there's not enough musically going on to match the fun things the melody is doing ---

Fritzl Family Staycation
+++ funky percussion +++
--- way hot text-to-speech [Hawkins?] ---
/// would have been really cool one-off tone-poem for about 1:00 minute ---
--- this over-stays its welcome and doesn't go anywhere ---

James Owens
+++ good attempt at giving the song a truly vast feeling; very cinematic touch +++
--- the vox don't mesh with the bigger-than-life feel ---
/// i would have liked this better as a simple, intimate tune. More Bob Dylan, less Roger Waters ///

MENBAH! - vote for a good song that shines through questionable production
--- sounds like the drummer is uncomfortable ---
--- drums are hot; vox are delivered from a galaxy far, far away ---
+++ melody and backing vox harmonies +++

noah mclaughlin - vote for ego
+++ pulse +++
+++ guitars +++
--- melody is the weakest part, followed closely by that off-key chorus scream ---
/// it's very much a matter of taste, but I like noise solos every now and then ///

Scott Gesser
--- singing ---
+++ lyrics +++
/// your production is very thin and needs work: the chorus should explode and it's the same level as everything; sounds like your recording everything through the same $10 cheap plastic USB mic ///
+++ split vox for pre-chorus +++
--- outstays its welcome ---

shamanizer (John Diehl)
--- talk-singing ---
+++ layers and atmosphere +++
--- goes nowhere ---

Something Happy - vote for the sing-along
+++ Blind Melon vibe +++
--- pitchy vox in the verse ---
/// right-panned lead guitar has a really nice tone, but its melody seems to warble in the verse more than add texture or interest to the vocal melody ///
+++ chorus +++
+++ outro ! +++
"You sound like the ghost of David Bowie." - SchlimminyCricket | it was a pleasure to burn | my website | Juliet's Happy Dagger
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Re: It's a bird, It's a review thread (Look at the Sky Reviews)

Post by AJOwens »

Ajl Anderson -- Pleasant folk feel. The lead guitar is appropriate between the verses, not so much while the singer is singing. Good harmonies, nice break. The traded vocals, if I'm not imagining them, add to the general folk camaraderie, and the whistling idea is right for this song. Also the reverb on the solo. It is a little long; still, I'm happy to listen twice to try to pick up on the lyrics. They tell a sort of story, but the middle is missing. Lots of strong images, but occasionally they feel arbitrary or forced for the sake of a rhyme. Overall, a pretty good entry, and a possible vote.

backward binoculars -- The music is interesting, but the robotic instrumentation and arrangement, the slightly droning vocals, and the steady dynamic flatten its emotional impact. I know, it's about androids or something, but I'm just saying. I like the eccentric instrumental solo a lot, but not so much the falsetto ahhs, which are off-key. On a second listen I tried to follow the lyrics, but they didn't add up for me. I usually don't get lyrics though.

Baker -- There's lots of little things to like here -- in fact, some real gems --but it's a smorgasbord with no unity. If you took some of the excellent musical moments and turned them into songs in their own right, I think you'd really have something. The singing needs work, and the poetic readings, though not bad, need more gravitas.

The Dinnertime Boys -- It's pretty and intriguing, but I would not have guessed it's about looking at the sky. If it were in a film, it might go with a moment in the life of a kitten, or a field of daisies. It's pleasant though.

Elaine DiMasi -- Likably playful. "Heard enough abou-ou-ou-ou-ou-out it" is admirably illustrative. The parts develop nicely, setting up an enjoyable groove for the solo. It's a little bit long for what it is, but well done and worth a vote.

Fritz Family Staycation -- You don't happen to own any Timothy Leary recordings, do you? It's an all-right experiment, but I think I've heard something very similar that included the mantra "Turn on -- Tune in -- Drop out."

James Owens -- Usually I meditate for days on my Songfight lyrics, but this time, eager to get back into it, I just clacked something out on a lunch break two days before the deadline. I was thinking vaguely about the ominous billowing clouds in Independence Day or the like, and the minor-chord sequences that tend to accompany them. But I was also thinking about my first acid trip (orange barrel, '69) and the magnificent Canadian sunset that transformed my outlook on life. Why was beauty in the world? So I banged out this mixed-up, lame excuse for poetry at the last minute, and then couldn't muster the enthusiasm to set it well or even sing it properly (not that I can sing much better than this). Still, I had fun with the minor chords.

MENBAH! -- The rhythm is a little out of sync. This is very droll. It feels tossed off, but it's so much fun I just may vote.

noah mclaughlin -- Good energy, the band has a live club feel. It's a great foot-tapper with a wild side -- not particularly memorable apart from that.

Scott Gesser -- The musical composition has potential; the chorus has the makings of a hook. You need to focus on improving the production, and maybe the equipment, for a punchier bass and more slash and edge on the guitar. Use good preamps, and pack the sound in: take the levels closer to the red when you record. You can always back them off in the mix.

shamanizer -- Another avant-garde pastiche. This one has the most consistency; with the same elements appearing throughout, it feels unified. The auto-tuned speaking doesn't fit sonically though; I would like the piece a whole lot more without it. (And the robotic voices in this fight are beginning to wear thin on me. This effect is becoming overused.)

Something Happy -- This song has a comfortable feel to it. I can imagine hearing it on the radio. The lead guitar in one ear is a little too much in one ear. Good build; the handclaps and additional harmonies really kick it up. well done. A vote for sure.
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Re: It's a bird, It's a review thread (Look at the Sky Reviews)

Post by BBABM »

no song of my own this week, but i can never help but give my worth[while/less] opinion. hope you get something out of it. in order that they came up on the site:

James Owens: this is straight out of an unwritten rock-opera. your voice is pretty darn good, sometimes it gets drowned out by the rest of the music. the immense synth in the background gives it a big feel, but it also sounds kinda cheesy to me. im kind of a dummy, so the lyrics lost me with all the descriptions being thrown about. as hunter s. thompson once said "don't tell me, show me." i feel this song did a lot of telling, and not a lot of showing. full of description, but no imagery.

Noah Mclauchlin: first thing i noticed was that the bass lacks any sort of definition, its almost a solid sound, which may have been what you were going for, but i like to really hear where the bassist is playing the note. cool riff though. i like how you change the voice, and i like the solo as well, noisy, and grungy. however i was honestly expecting more out of the vocals than a couple of really simple melodies. the effect over the one part helps break it up a little but not really enough to make it interesting. i really like the grungy style, and the musicianship though.

backward binoculars: wow, i thought i used basic beats. that is literally off a keyboard. honestly, i kind of like the simple chord progression. words are a little boring, but the harmony is well done... that first solo thing is the SHIT! it gets much better after that, i like all the bleeps and bloops, and the little arpeggio thingys. cool song.

Shamanizer: it sounds like your auto-tune is on LSD. not one part sounds like it is on time, in tune, or possibly even the same tempo as everything else, but it all goes together in a really weird way. i kind of like it, it hurts my head and i cant listen to it more than the two times i just did, but i like it.

fritzl family staycation: a cool beat... is it going to be this and that weird talking the whole time? yup...

baker: that beat off the bat is SO SICK, even when it went dreamy and talky, it was ok cause i wanted it to come back... but no you killed it and went to slow boring guitar and keys. singing voice could use some work. ok, brought back a little bit of the techno. weird, not so sweet, tempo speed up, but the beat is much better fast, as are the quick words. all in all, if this song never slowed down it would have been sweet. kinda lost me with the 30sec of talking, killed it with the singing. if i could vote for just until the first breakdown i would...

the dinnertime boys: this is 80's soft-core porn music. ive seen this one, she is washing the car in daisy dukes and a wife-beater. oops she got some suds on her shirt... sorry sidetracked, nothing about this makes me think of the sky, or looking at it, unless her name is sky.

scott gesser: this could be a really awesome song if it were recorded correctly. it sounds like you used a can with a string to record every single track. i want to hear this done live, or recorded right. sweet song, sounds like a less growly mike ness (social distortion) singing for a mid 90s alternative pop band. all things i like. damn that recording sucks though.

elaine dimasi: i always like girl vox, this is not an exception. the crazy keyboard is cool, but some of the notes are just off, and though barely audible, they get me in the ear hole. i like the "i missed it with my telescope" line, but the weird "electric slide whistle" (that's what ill call it) sound right afterward is what i'm talking about "off" notes. it is rife with them, which obviously cant be helped when youre sliding through them like that, i guess its just a subjective thing.

something happy: the last word of every verse line is off key, and its driving me nuts, because the rest of the song is flippin perfect. cool jam, well recorded, everything is on time, and well played. kinda cheesy, and the hand claps are a little much, but the sing-along is kinda cool and what pop song isnt a little cheesy? ill give it a 3 star rather than a 4 star rating because of that one note of every line. its almost painful in contrast with how clean the rest of the song is.

ajl anderson: this sounds like one of my songs done well. stand up bass is always a plus. i like it, a little rambley with the words, but the melody keeps my attention, and i like the harmony. "i want you to know that im always by your side/ and if you get lost look up at the sky" is very pretty. it is quite a long song, maybe a little too long, but all in all its a good tune.

MENBAH! somebody is off beat. i dont know who because it is consistent throughout the whole song, but it sounds weird. the guitar is almost non-existent except for the pick flicking sound which may be what sounds weird. i like the skiddlydeedladat at the end. the harmonies are cool but the weird offness is a little too much.

votes: ajl, something happy, elaine, scott
thanks for letting me listen!
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Re: It's a bird, It's a review thread (Look at the Sky Reviews)

Post by ElaineDiMasi »

Ajl Anderson - The story is fine. Guitars sound nice. Backup vocals are nice. Somehow, every part of this song takes too long - takes too long to finish the sentences - extra lines just there for rhyming, like the one about the dog, I feel like I'm waiting and waiting for it to get to the point. Sometimes the phrasing is pretty bad. Same story should be told in way fewer words, it's not like there's a lot of musical ideas that need room to place.

backward binoculars - "the aperture within your mind" won my love, then I dumped you at the chorus one millisecond later, because I hate the chugging minor chord and the way the chorus goes. So, more scorecarding to break the tie ... verse 2, I really do like these kinds of synth tones. Chorus 2, I hate the chorus. Interlude, the vocal "ahh" over the synth makes me smile but I'm getting bored by the drum track. Verse 3 the vocals made me wish something were different in the melody this time, but the twisty synth makes me forgive you. I hate the chorus. So, I dunno. Write another one with better drums and chorus next time?

Baker - (sigh) I knew this title was making people do dramatic Laurie Anderson shit.. HOWEVER, every single musical thing you did was quite cool. I agree with other reviews saying it's missing some glue and the weak singing hurts the recording. Your spoken bit is cliche in its words. As a piece of music overall this was a pleasure, congrats on the ideas. Vote.

The Dinnertime Boys - Huh, lots of synths in the fight this week. I'm bored by this track, sorry, not much of a groove.

Elaine DiMasi - Having fun with my synth and tape recorder, seeing what I could do in 8 tracks with no bounces, cha-cha-ing around my living room a little. I'm glad I didn't make it any easier to edit - I would have spent way more time than the song was worth, cleaning up the sloppy bits, putting fx on the vocals, and tweaking the mix. I like my bass lines though, wish they sounded bigger here.

Fritzl Family Staycation - (sigh) I knew this title was making people do dramatic Laurie Anderson shit.. yours doesn't win. That kind of track is more fun to make than to listen to.

James Owens - (sigh) I knew this title was making people do dramatic prog rock song-vistas shit.. Have to admit, you did it with fine craftsmanship here. A very good musical ear. "clear and transparent",
with gravitas, is really up Moody Blues alley. I think that guitar twiddle at 3:08 is from Threshold of a Dream.

MENBAH! - You win the Moody Blues side-fight. Nice phrasing on "chose differently a ha", and it's the more rocking flavor. Your lyrics are mostly too literal, but I dig things like "different kinds of
gravity, oh ho." Download.

noah mcLaughlin - Noise! Guitar noise! Vox noise! Echo noise! It's heavenly. I don't care what the lyrics are. Let's collab ;-) On the negative side, you've "done this before", actually you've done this a lot before, in terms of the phrasing lines and spokenbits coming and going - so the twists and turns weren't surprising, not to a fan anyway. Download.

Scott Gesser - See Ajl Anderson, above, in terms of how I'd critique the song, though I like your images better and your lyrics are a little tighter. Strangely, it sounds like you have an instruction manual for 90's-alt-rock songs and read it cover to cover and used every element they described, one after another. It somehow sounds like it's all been somebody else's idea. "It feels like I've been sleepwalking" is probably the most cliche part. Sounds like you should keep writing and recording and find a unique voice.

shamanizer - (sigh) I knew this title was making people do dramatic Laurie Anderson shit.. yours doesn't win. That kind of track is more fun to make than to listen to. You're better than Fritzl Family in giving me guitar tweaks to listen to, but not by much.

Something Happy - You win big points for having a choral stack of voices come in right at the start (unless I'm imagining them), and I love the guitar lick at 1:10. Musically this is one of my favorites in the fight, the chord changes just sound sweet .. but halfway through you've done the same verse, guitar, chorus twice and the bridge seemed to save it just barely in time. So by the time the outro gets here it feels that the song is too long. If it were the Allman Brothers I'd probably forgive it, but it's not. Vote and download.
BBABM wrote:elaine dimasi: i always like girl vox, this is not an exception. the crazy keyboard is cool, but some of the notes are just off, and though barely audible, they get me in the ear hole. i like the "i missed it with my telescope" line, but the weird "electric slide whistle" (that's what ill call it) sound right afterward is what i'm talking about "off" notes. it is rife with them, which obviously cant be helped when youre sliding through them like that, i guess its just a subjective thing.
Well, thanks for listening! I built a "cha cha" groove with a synth tumbao, a synth guiro, a synth clave (carrying the chords), and a synth timbales. The timbales are what you're mostly hearing, they're de-tuned a little by the LFO waveform and in the instrumental breaks, I dialed the detuning to a LOT. More detuning comes from portmanteau in the tumbao synth (slides from octave to octave) and the use of infrared pitch-detuner (you wave your hand at the optical sensor) and joystick (feeds pitch oscillation to the LFO) on the solo synth line. Oh, and the synth guiro has the filter cranked to resonate on out-of-tune harmonics (the quiet sparkly things). I meant to sing it much more out of tune, frankly, but that came out as sliding, sounding more like a stylistic decision than a pitch decision. YMMV!
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Re: It's a bird, It's a review thread (Look at the Sky Reviews)

Post by backwardbinoculars »

Tried to listen to each at least twice if I could. Random order.

Elaine DiMasi - I really liked all the cool sounds for the majority of the song, but started to sound  bit gimmicky near the end. Melody was alright. I also feel like, though your vocals are very nice, that maybe they could've meshed better with the song with a little FX.

Something Happy - Really great sounding tune overall. Great chorus, feels just right, but the verse could use more bounce or confidence. Really like chorus. Bridge was cool too. Hand claps!! Great addition. Guitar maybe a bit busy sometimes, but usually very nice.

The Dinnertime Boys - Love the sounds. Try for some vocals, vocoder IMO. ;) Pleasant listen.

Scott Gesser - Loved the intro! Loved the octave vocals on second verse. The first line of the chorus is great but some of the melody was a bit weak here and there, just inconsistent to me. Simplify/shorten guitar solo. I like how you changed it up for each verse, sounded good.

James Owens - Confident vocals and strong melody. It was very dramatic (in a cool way) and had a pleasant chord progression. Reminds me a bit of Mercury Rev at certain points.

noah mclaughlin - Seemed to wander through a few different ideas without ever fully landing on one, but they were all cool. I liked the short usage of vocal FX, and I liked all the snarling guitars a lot. Very enjoyable overall.

Ajl Anderson - Sounded very good, enjoyable listen for sure. Was just a bit long without too much variation in fundamental structure (not that I'm really one to talk...) Fantastic chorus, really catchy with great harmony. Wish you landed on it a few more times. Pro whistling too. :)

shamanizer - Some very interesting textures and sounds. I enjoyed them, but some seemed to clash a bit here and there. The two vocal tracks were a bit distracting at certain points.

MENBAH! - Cool guitar, reminds me of Modest Mouse a bit. I liked the vocals a lot too. Bass was a bit weird/off at certain points though. I enjoyed it, but it could be tightened up I think.

Baker - Awesome intro!! I'm glad you ended with it too. Middle part was touch and go for a bit, but when you bring the beat back in it picks up again nicely. Vocals need a bit work. Just throw a vocoder or autotune in there. It would fit the song too I think. :) Cool speed up in the end. Not a huge fan of the talking.

Fritzl Family Staycation - Cool beat, interesting idea for the computer voice with it. I think you could have fleshed out some more background music (synths or something) and it would have rounded out the song much better.

backward binoculars (self critique) - Too one dimensional. Don't like vocals overall. Wish it wasn't as subdued as it turned out. My simplicity and repetition usually lead to shorter songs, but I had too many lyrics this time so it was a bit long.
ElaineDiMasi wrote:I hate the chorus
Yeah I don't really like it either. I very nearly tried to redo it, but I didn't have enough time and was afraid I'd have to rip the whole song apart too. XD
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Re: It's a bird, It's a review thread (Look at the Sky Reviews)

Post by glennny »

Look at the sky

Ajl Anderson- Are you indeed Ian Anderson? You sound a lot like Ian. Well I’m a huge Jethro Tull fan, I can’t help but absolutely love this. This song may be too long in a maximizing the impact of it kind of way. On the other hand I don’t want it to end when it does. The bass is awesome especially in its tone. I like the acoustic playing, the relaxing lead guitar is sweet and tasty. The vocals are just sublime. Minus points for the “up”, but that just brings you down to Earth. This is a vote and a keeper! Good job!

Backward Binoculars-
Your verse did a good job building anticipation, however the chorus didn’t deliver the pay off I was hoping for. This is a nice enough listen. Ah, this noise solo is very cool! It provides an excellent break-up of the monotony. This is probably too long especially with the single pattern drum machine throughout. You need a catchier chorus. Some good stuff!

Baker- LATS I- (Instrumental intro 23 seconds)Freaking Awesome! Is this Pete? This is Bad Ass, surely a vote. LATS II- (Spoken word)- What is this crap? Way to screw up an awesome song! No vote! LATS III- (fuguey guitar and piano)- Ah this is nice and pretty. LATS IV- Wow these vocals need work, or several more takes or both. LATS- V- (2:22)- Nice arty and weird! LATS VI- More spoken word, please kill me. And then nothing. I applaud the ambition. You seem self aware about the weakness of your vocals. I’d work a lot on those, and consider going more instrumental. The instrumental bits in this were really clever. As a whole I can’t vote for this, but I loved and hated some parts.

The Dinner Time Boys
- This must be related to the Elaine track. The production sounds the same, along with the same cool synth patch. This gets a vote. I wonder if the 2 songs should have been one, a like a nice long intro. Anyway, this reminds me of the campy music in Superman III. It’s almost worth suffering through the movie just to hear the early 80’s pop fusion instrumental stuff. I like it! VOTE

Elaine Dimasi- This is soooo ENO ! I love everything about this. If you ever want some Frippertronics on a song like this, I’d be happy to do my Glennertronics version of such. This is deliciously quirky. You have taken Tiger mountain by Strategy! This ends with a wimper rather than a bang, which is a little disappointing. I think topping this off with a really strong ending would be about the only rework I’d like to hear on this. Good job! VOTE

Fritzl Family Staycation-
Well it’s mostly based on this drum pattern. Luckily the drum beat is great. This proves my point that the drums are the most important thing. I can listen to this all the way through and bop my head along the whole way through despite the art that got all over it. Nice enough listen, I like it in the context of the album that is this fight. On its own it isn’t very strong.

James Owens- Sweet! This could be a George Harrison song. Maybe Moody Blues. Anyway great chords! Excellent chort pattern. You masterfully musically paint the majestic clouds soaring in the sky. Maybe the best musical representation of the title. The lyrics are not bad, in fact they’re pretty good, but I’m really impressed with the musical choices. The huge orchestra at the slow tempo conjures up ELO and Pink Floyd hugeness. Awesome! VOTE!

MENBAH!- This sounds like the Vinyl singe I left on the dashboard, which melted in the sun ever so slightly. The playback was warbley like this. The bass and drums sound great. The guitars and vocals sound tragically drunk. I’m pretty sure this is Wages on lead vox. I love the way you always sell it. Pretty cool song that could use a rerecording and improved chorus melody.

Noah McLaughlin- I am often and am once again reminded of Aerosmith “When the Lightening Strikes” with this song of yours. I love the vibe of this song. The dynamics are very well executed as well. Drums and bass sound cool. All the guitars have great tone and are played well. I like your voice too, though I have the usual criticism that the range is too narrow. (I’m one to talk). I can’t quite vote for this, but I like it!

Scott Gesser
- I like the Social D school of vocal affectation. The production leaves a lot to be desired, however the intent translates pretty well. Cool guitar solo despite the awful recording. There is just an enormous amount of hiss in this thing. What bank robber notices cashier’s names? The harmony vocal line might be more harmful than helpful. There are some nice little hooks in the pre-chorus, I don’t like the chorus unfortunately. Not bad. Not quite there. I’d love to hear this redone when you get your recording get up dialed in.

Shamanizer- Art. Autotune the Whim. Interesting. Fun. Not a vote.

Something Happy- This is my project this week. Most Thanksgivings I head down to LA and spend it with my buddy from High School and many musical adventures for the last 22 years. We were playing Dixit (http://www.boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/39856/dixit), and my 5 year old Daughter played the card with the tree and the flowers behind it. Her title for it was “Something Happy” , this brought about a very interesting round. Anyway, I brought my laptop and Fireone along with me. Gregg is an awesome musician his band Stewboss (http://www.myspace.com/stewboss/videos) is fantastic if you ever get a chance to see them in and around LA, don’t miss them! So he and his family had gone on a hike earlier that day. While we were writing the song, we had his nieces write us up some lyrics. Let’s see order of operations: 1- Write chord pattern-in Bb, best key for Gregg. My strong note is an F, theoretically I was going to add some harmony, this never happened. 2- Acoustic- Gregg, 3- Electric Glen, 4- Ebow- Glen, 5- bass-Gregg, we didn’t have a bass so that is indeed an electric guitar through some kind of an octave pedal. We like to take a note from Paul McCartney and write the bass line after the guitar parts in order to make them more melodic. 6- Lead guitar- Gregg. 7- Chorus vocals- we like to start with the chorus, it’s the most important part. Gregg came up with this catchy melody. We applied it to niece lyrics. Then we laid down all the chorus vocals. 8- it was getting late, my wife called “when are you going to be back”, so the verse melody and and lyrics were a bit rushed. 9- I came back from LA, handed off the tracks to Ken, asked him for some real drums. Tuesday night he put down drums, and tambo. 10- After a Berkeley Social Scene session where we worked on my GOM, I got the guys to do the sing along bit. Ken conducted. It was really fun (and cold). 11- Ryan stepped up to lay down the bridge vocals. Ken had written 3 stanzas based on what I described I wanted the song to be about. I chose the 2nd stanza for the bridge. 12- Ken graciously mixed it for us. Thanks for the kind reviews!

This batch of reviews has been inspired by:
Jethro Tull- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-0mxuJiOEaQ
Brian Eno- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ojrKiRTe ... re=related
Concert for George- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=drCKvCL9 ... re=related
Aerosmith- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ss29AYVJxU
Social Distortion- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_NWjehpG ... re=channel

My votes go to:

Ajl Anderson
The Dinner Time Boys
Elaine DiMasi
James Owens
Something Happy
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
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Re: It's a bird, It's a review thread (Look at the Sky Reviews)

Post by Spintown »

http://spintown79.blogspot.com/2010/12/ ... t-sky.html

Something Happy - I liked it. I expected to smile when listening to this (based on your name), and I did. So I'm not going to say anything bad about it, just well done. (vote)

Ajl Anderson - I really dug the music. I didn't care for the lyrics or story telling. I just got bored, and since it's almost 6 minutes long, I suggest cutting it down a bit. The vocal performance was my favorite of this round. You've got a lot of tools in your bag, but I just didn't dig the story...the looooong story. (vote)

Scott Gesser - I think this has promise...despite me not being into the story. The hook is catchy, but the recording just sucks. I don't really know what you're capable of, but I look at this being a solid very rough demo. (vote)

backward binoculars - Very simple music, and you have a soothing voice. WTF moment just after the 2 minute mark? Some of those sound effects just aren't pleasant to listen to. At one point I was reminded of what it was like having a dial up internet connection. I didn't really get the story being told, but as most people find out, I'm the type of person who likes the story to be crystal clear.

Fritzl Family Staycation - Next...

The Dinnertime Boys - Honestly that was very purty. The first 20 seconds I just sat back with my eyes closed relaxing. Then I opened them & saw my player said the song was about 1/3 of the way finished...just when I was expecting...well...lyrics? I know instrumentals are allowed here at Song Fight, but that doesn't mean I have to like it. At least make it longer (TWSS) you tease.

Baker - What the heck is going on in the beginning & from 2:18-2:41? Whatever it is, stop it. The second time it stops very abruptly, which just makes it seem even more weird & out of place. The vocals weren't great, but good enough. My big problem is that there seems to be a lot going on in this song, yet none of them seem to go together.

shamanizer - Why?
Ajl Anderson
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Re: It's a bird, It's a review thread (Look at the Sky Reviews)

Post by Ajl Anderson »

Elaine Dimasi: i like the lower keyboard bass during the verse, it has a nice vibe about it. I like the keyboard solo, but i'm not crazy about the key melody. The vox melody is a in and out for me, the lyrics fit but i cant pull anything from them.

The Dinnertime Boys: i like the introduction and the main melody, really simple. it is a little short but for the style of song that it is that is fine. during the course of listening to it, though, i hoped for a small solo or stray from the melody line.

Shamanzier: Interesting feel, your lyrics are very behind the beat. i like the progression and the pad (or what sounds like a pad). i personally am not a fan of auto tune, so other than that the vox are chill. The feed back noise distracts me from your lyrics when it is happening and it kinda hurts my head.

Backwards Binoculars: Torn on the verse and the sound it has, I like the chorus though. The spazy first solo was groovy, and I like the arpegio in the background after the solo. the high pitch keys stepped on your vocals during the verse, it meshed alright during the chorus.

MENBAH!: The drummer sounds very uncomfortable with the sound and vibe he gives. The guitar sound is iffy, it sounds like you were riding a wammy the wholetime. The vox are alright, but vox harmonies accompanied the vocals very nicely. The ending was good, but the gibberish at the end made me feel strange about it at the last minute.

Fritzl Family Staycation: I absolutely loved the opening percussion, was almost hoping for samba :D haha but the spoken word came in and at first i thought "what the hell..." then as it progressed it became a little more fitting but still throughout the whole song i was hoping for some instrumentation over that sweet perc part.

Baker: Cool intro and transition into the chord progression, but the vocals were extremely pitchy and difficult to listen to. I feel that the poems should have more energy in your voice behind, more emotion. The tempo change in the middle was hectic and hard to keep up with what was going on, maybe thats what you were going for?

James Owens: Good song over all, but the lyrics and vocals were a little unfitting in the midst of all the Roger Waters going on. I liked the music as a whole though.

Ajl Anderson: This was my project this week, and like all of you, i agree that it is too long. My phrasing was time consuming. I am going to go back and consolidate some things to shorten it up. I think my singing was iffy in some portions, personally. I wrote this song in two days and recorded it in three. This is the first song I have written in awhile and i have to say, it felt good. I played everything you heard except the Electric lead. That was played by my buddy Andrew Marshall.

Noah Mclaughlin: Good rock vibe at first. The vocals weren't my bag of chips. but over all it was a solid grunge tune.

Something Happy: Tasty opening dudes, really great music. i like everything about this song. Except the verse vocals, they are very pitchy.

Scott Gesser: Lyrics were interesting. The whole song sounded very dry to me. My favorite part was the pre-chorus, i like the vocal melody over the bass.
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Re: It's a bird, It's a review thread (Look at the Sky Reviews)

Post by duffey »

REVIEW TIME!!!

Menbah! – I enjoyed this…even with the wavering of pitch in the recording. Wish the instruments would have been a little more together…sometimes feels like they’re starting to play different songs. But when it’s all lined up, it’s a very pretty song. The reverb on the vocals matched the mood of the piece very well.

Shamanizer – Very unique…you pulled it off well. I actually like the background talking….would have been nice to hear this song develop more and last a little longer.

Scott Gesser – I thought this song was strong musically, but wasn’t a fan of the lyrics in the verse….chorus is much better, lyrically and melodically for me. I’m a big fan of a good hook and 90s alternative sound, and you did both well.

Dinnertime Boys – Excellent instrumental piece, and a great melodic line. Obviously it’s easier to hear the title given in a lyrical song, but I think the mood your piece gave off matched the title well. I wish it was longer!

James Owens – Great classic rock, spacey vibe. Lyrics fit very well…mood is perfect for this title. Love it!

Noah McLaughlin – Good intro…and good dark and deep voice. The verse is stronger than chorus for me…would have liked it to have stayed darker and in a minor key…somewhat along the lines of Sisters Of Mercy “This Corrosion”. But then again, that’s what makes your song different, and an excellent job!

Ajl Anderson – Very enjoyable. This is a lyrically driven song for me, and I enjoyed paying attention to the words. Love when the harmonies comes in….and love the standup bass as well. I think more songs need whistling! Love it! Could listen to over and over!

Something Happy – Great feel to this song. Love the chorus hook! Verse is pretty, but feels just a little monotonous compared to the rest of the song…a note or 2 difference in each alternating phrase could do the trick. That’s my only complaint though…really dig it, and I’m clapping and singing along!

Fritzl Family Staycation – Good beat…would like to have this develop into something. The whole piece feels like an intro to something bigger, and I would have enjoyed hearing more!

Elaine DiMasi – Fun intro! I wish I had the effects and equipment to achieve that sound! Very fun song, I found myself bobbing up and down in my chair as I listened!

Backward Binoculars – Great chords and sounds! I love the harmony with the chorus. This song gives me a nostalgic feel, and I love that. Interesting solo…it works! Really enjoyed this song…my personal favorite of the bunch!

Baker – Like the techno beginning, the talking works….great transition to the piano. I wish I could make out the melody you’re trying to achieve a little better, as it shows promise. I do like this song, and thought you did a great job with the transitioning through the different sections.

Votes go to:
Backward Binoculars
Ajl Anderson
James Owen
Something Happy
j$
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Re: It's a bird, It's a review thread (Look at the Sky Reviews)

Post by j$ »

WAIL. IAAC.

Oh dear. I discover I have a one-minute attention span these days. Probably best to take these with a pinch of salt.

Shamanizer – I like this a lot. There’s a great mood created overall, and the mumble,ing words set off the robo-voice nicely. There’s some ebb and flow here and it doesn’t outstay it’s welcome. I wouldn’t listen to it very often but I certainly enjoyed it more than some of the more ‘traditional’ songs in this week’s fight.

Fritzl Family Staycation – the best thing about this is the name, and even that’s soooo last year, darling. For something which, presumably, is all about the words (‘cos there’s not all that much else to get hold of apart from nice cowbelly loop) I am surprised that you make the TTS even harder to follow than needs be by whacking on echo. I come away with the concept “hey, guys, space is biiiiiiiig” which I knew already. Though I guess it’s a point worth repeating! I guess if I was trying to think of something helpful (I appreciate I haven’t been up to now) – if you’re going to do a literal beat poetry song make/choose the drum patterns more carefully. The loop is nice but just cannot support that length of time with nothing going on. My attention wanders and therefore your efforts have been wasted, at least for this casual listener.

Backwards Binoculars – Love: the name, the voice with all its frailities, the organ tones, the solo. You clearly love the solo as well as it goes on for TWO MINUTES! To be honest this song is almost 100% too long. It should really stop around 2.30ish. Pack more in, be more efficient! I was really enjoying this and then I realised it wasn’t going to evolve any more (around the 1.45 mark, I clicked) and then the joy of the broken solo / lead / watchamacallit hurt my heart. Bad: Backwards Binoculars hurting my heart.

Dinnertime Boys – This sounds like the soundtrack for some imaginary dope-smoking minigame from Final Fantasy VII. It mainly conjures up a mood that reflects the title, and it’s rather pretty. It just really doesn’t excite me. I am a word-whore.

Scott Gesser – Apart from the first lines of the melody being “invisible sun” I like it. I wonder whether this might work better without the arrangement? I am not one for championing G’n’G (really not) but it’s a good enough tune and the voice is strong enough (though the harmonies are highlighting the wobbly bits), and I find the drums and bass a bit too rigid for the playing. In other words, they feel (and sound a bit) like they’ve been photocopied onto a G’N’G song. Obviously it would have to be shorter. This song needs to be shorter anyway. I dunno, I go away from SF for a bit and everyone thinks it’s OK to go past 2.45 regardless of whether or not the song can take it. Think about the audience, people! [/’You Blew It Up!’ moment]

BAKER – great opening (although maybe the percussion is a little overbearing in the mix). Yes the first 38 seconds were great and I like the piano riffing though I start to think “oh dear this is going to get massively indulgent now” which it does, but there’s nothing wrong with that. The vocal is hard going to listen to, to be honest. Perhaps a little less of that? (I struggle between encouraging people to go for it vocally when it might get ropey or just stick to the notes they know). Spoken word at 2.52 a soupcon of pretension too much. Do you really think that part of the story was strong enough to deserve so much attention? Hmmm, really enjoy the experimentation and the boldness of this, but sadly in this instance the idea more than the actualisation. I look forward to hearing some more, mind! [edit: OH F**k it, for the ideas, and the desire that leaks out of this song, I will VOTE for this and then never listen to it again. Deal?]

Something Happy – I don’t like fake false starts. Edit that off. This is well done, performed and recorded, the ever-so slightly ropey voice is a bit grating, mainly I think because everything else is tidy and clean and tight and it highlights the small gradations. Still, the song’s got that cool rock feel that suits warmer climes than London. Sorry to play the NMB card, but it’s Not My Bag. Nice fiddle! Not enough to warm my cockles on this icy English day or win my vote, but well done.

AJL Anderson – A nice swing to this. Good bass tone too. The vocal is strong. At 1.30 oh dear it’s not just this chord progression for SIX F**KING MINUTES, is it? 2.00 is too late for a variation, which actually isn’t that varied percussively or melodically from the main riff. Yeah, this song is OK. The story rolls out reasonably pleasantly but really, there is absolutely no reason this song should be six minutes long. EDIT! EDIT! EDIT! For instance, lovely whistling but I had not been letting your song play as I write this mini-rant I would never have got to it. Same with the lead-work. Had this been 3-3.30 minutes with a bit more pick-up to its energy, I would definitely have voted for it.

Elaine DiMasi – Some much to like about this song. The musical arrangement is lovely and intriguing – lots of squishy bits and things that go “BOING!”. Some great lyrical phrases (and I like the idea of “Watching you watching me”. I just am not sure that the vocal melody isn’t better suited to an acapella thing? Maybe that’s my previous listening prejudice, but this is so nearly the best song the Tom Tom Club never recorded and it’s not quite, because I don’t feel the vocal performance gells with the awesome backing track. Also possibly 30 seconds too long. However, VOTE as it’s the only thing that’s truly excited me so far.

James Owens – Bowie much? This is so preposterous that it’s almost wonderful. Almost. However despite all the variations and effort I can't help but feel it has totally revealed itself by one minute in and therefore my interest wanes.

MENBAH! – Hmmm, great mix. Your voice sounds good here. “See what the universe looks like from behind”, ummm :) Maybe the bass should be louder since it’s kind of doing all the interesting stuff? Flutey thing is welcome. Bingo 2.45! So have a VOTE for that (and the backwards vox at the end). Not sure the lyric is very interesting but hey, I am suddenly feeling generous !

Noah – Nick Cave? Works for you! The major chord change at (and the sudden Springsteen-ness of ) the chorus is odd but works. Maybe the drums tonally could be grindier (run through a amp VST or something, just 10% or so to give it some crunch.) Not much I would change, except the slightly sludy mix, so VOTE.
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Re: It's a bird, It's a review thread (Look at the Sky Reviews)

Post by Billy's Little Trip »

I don't have time for reviews, but they all sound pretty good. A lot of electronica stuff. But I must say, I really like Something Happy. I haven't been around in the weekly fights much of late, but I hope to hear more from this project.

Also, Miss Fancy Pants, Ely May DiMasi. I like the bendy tripy groove and all the little repetitive aliments in your song. For me, repetition equals comfort and comfort equals head movies. I almost instantly see balloons when I listen to this. So I had to go look for "The Red Balloon" and test my theory that this song was actually written by a balloon and implanted in your brain when you were asleep.

Try this:
1. Start this youtube vid below and mute the sound.
2. Start Elaine's song. << right click in new window
3. ????
4. Profit!


Slow computers, open the vid at the youtube site for smoother play.
Last edited by Billy's Little Trip on Wed Dec 08, 2010 12:32 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: It's a bird, It's a review thread (Look at the Sky Reviews)

Post by nyjm »

Fantastic find, BLT! I love The Red Balloon and especially fortuitous synchronicities like this.
"You sound like the ghost of David Bowie." - SchlimminyCricket | it was a pleasure to burn | my website | Juliet's Happy Dagger
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Re: It's a bird, It's a review thread (Look at the Sky Reviews)

Post by ElaineDiMasi »

nyjm wrote:Fantastic find, BLT! I love The Red Balloon and especially fortuitous synchronicities like this.
Oh. My. God.

[falls down in a swoon]
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Re: It's a bird, It's a review thread (Look at the Sky Reviews)

Post by Stubby Phillips »

Nice collaboration!
Hey, guys -- gimme six numbers between 1-49 please.
Enter a song? Review songs!
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Re: It's a bird, It's a review thread (Look at the Sky Reviews)

Post by AJOwens »

Stubby Phillips wrote:Nice collaboration!
Hey, guys -- gimme six numbers between 1-49 please.
Uh, 23.

You want them from different people, right?
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Re: It's a bird, It's a review thread (Look at the Sky Reviews)

Post by Stubby Phillips »

What?
Yeah, right. I'll probably get 5 numbers and slowly go insane...er.
Enter a song? Review songs!
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Re: It's a bird, It's a review thread (Look at the Sky Reviews)

Post by AJOwens »

Oh, OK. 7 35 19 42 2
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Re: It's a bird, It's a review thread (Look at the Sky Reviews)

Post by deetak »

short comments

Ajl Anderson: I like this style in general. I think the leads are fine are pre-vocal harmony part when they played at the same time/between the singing. Stand up bass was good to hear in a song here. I agree about the length.

backwards binoculars: verse is more interesting for me than the chorus. Solo is cool. when it comes back to do little riffs during the verse, also.

baker: transitioning is smooth considering the difference between the parts. You have a lot of ideas. The really fast talking part [thumbs up]

Dinnertime Boys: it does make me think of a minigame as j$ wrote a or waiting/market area in a sunny place in a game.

Elaine DiMasi: crazy intro, I like it. I agree with nyjm regarding voice timbre. Still it's pretty well done.

Fritzl Family Staycation: the computer voice is a little hard to concentrate on listening to because the percussion sounds so much more brighter than it. I like the words, though.

James Owens: it's awesome. The only thing is something about vocals - they're too dry I mean fx wise in the mix, during the "look at the sky" before the "what does it mean" parts, but it could just be my headphones. Impressive stuff.

MENBAH!: band could be tighter in the first minute. I like it more when the vocal harmonies come in around 1:15. The last minute is nice too.

noah mclaughlin: chorus is catchy though the fade out ending with it is sort of sudden

Scott Gesser: production is the limiting factor but the song is well written. also catchy

shamanizer: this is weird, hard to make out the autotuned vocals but i like the idea of putting it next to the plain spoken voice

Something Happy: lead guitar on right pan in beginning verse I think would be fine if it were not so up front in the mix, for it remains the same in the short instrumental part after, also a little too close in the solo near the end even the solo is well written. texture is good, as in when that other instrument comes in at 2:28. anyway the songwriting is solid - would be a hit with million dollar production probably.

votes:
Ajl, Elaine, James Owens, Something Happy
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Re: It's a bird, It's a review thread (Look at the Sky Reviews)

Post by glennny »

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m9Cmzr3aX_M

Congrats Ajl !

Alas, 2nd place isn't so bad.
This video was mostly shot with poor light and my i-phone video.

enjoy!
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