Commit your tune to Sacrifice! (C&S review thread)

Discuss upcoming, current, and previous song fights.
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Commit your tune to Sacrifice! (C&S review thread)

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Re: Commit your tune to Sacrifice! (C&S review thread)

Post by Billy's Little Trip »

Otalgia! *flicks my bic*

Who's singing? The regular voice sounds a lot like Page Hamilton. Love it.

Paco! This is my new favorite PDS song! I fuckin' love it!

It's great to hear so much rock this week. Cordsmith, glennny, SoSC, Klownhole, Ken's SDBaS.

I'm still going through the songs. Rmosquito, that's different for you guys. I really like it!
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Re: Commit your tune to Sacrifice! (C&S review thread)

Post by Jim of Seattle »

Very strong fight, but a lot of really long songs. Votes for The Older Brothers, Glennny, Paco del Stinko, DJ Ranger Den, Otalgia, Cord Smith

The Older Brothers

This is nice. Or I should say, this sounds like a really good band. This particular song sounds like one of the lesser efforts buried near the end of the album, but the blend of high energy drums and keyboards, rock vocal stylings and rather tame songwriting (by "tame" I mean more pop-sounding in chords and melody) makes for a contrast that keeps me interested. The lead vocal is a little lonely out there, perhaps bring it down a little on the verses. The synth pattern on the verses in the left speaker spells out a more interesting chord progression than the rest of the band is playing. I wish your keyboard player had spoken up to the rest of the band and said "Hey, let's try playing these chord changes every half bar". Nice job. Vote

Glennny

I love this. Two potential winners right out of the gate. What I love about this is that you present a conventional groove, but you take it to all sorts of interesting harmonic and melodic places. It's interesting. The drums are what really sell the song, but what sets it apart is the ambition of the rest of the song. I think the lead vocal is too mid-rangey, I miss the high end, wish it had a little more sparkle to bring it out. Vote

Hortus Ortus

Very solid performance, arrangement, etc. I should really like this more than I do. It's a little somnambulant. The lyrics are a little too on the nose perhaps. I can hear the lyricist coming up with lines and rhymes, doesn't feel natural. I don't believe you. It sounds like you're singing about commitment and sacrifice because that's the title, but you don't really believe what you're singing yourself. The song is over as I type this, but thinking back on the topic for your song, I'm thinking that the sentiment in the lyrics needs a little more urgency to sell me. I'm not suggesting more energy, but if it's going to be slow like this, I think I'm wanting more emotional connection to it. It's a good job, but a near miss for me.

William Lane

4/10

Takoyaki

Hmmm. You're liable to get some bad reviews for this one. But I kind of like it. If I were working on this with you, I would first off make sure everyone was on beat better. The keyboard is keeping this clean pulse, but the guitar and percussion are consistently rushing the beat, which kills whatever feel you're trying for. I would also speed the whole thing up a little bit. And perhaps layer some other sounds in there to keep it interesting after a couple minutes. But this is nice enough. No vote, but I appreciate the effort.

sonofsupercar

Rock band + loose playing + dissonance + noise = sonofsupercar

I admire sonofsupercar more than I like them. It's like you embody everything a great band should be, but somehow it only occasionally all adds up for me. I always think "Yeah! You get it. This is what bands should be doing more of. So why don't I like it?" So I guess I would say that for whatever reason it's not connecting to me, but intellectually, I love it. So weird. Perhaps it's that you so adamantly refuse catchy hooks that I miss that. I don't know. The mystery continues.

Paco del Stinko

Another strong contender. This has a reckless quality that fits great with the strange evocative imagery in the lyrics. Good idea bringing the strings in at 2:30. I'm scared now. This song is scary. It might be a minute too long. Really great job. Vote.

R. Mosquito

Almost. I'm reminded obviously of the Decemberists. I wanted to like this song, but it's so strange that I couldn't put it all together. I didn't really get what you're going for. And if you reply back and say "this is what I was going for" my response will be "Well, I didn't get that". I get the vibe of the instrumentals, and the vocals are cool and the lyrics are interesting, but it doesn't have a singular unity for me. I don't know what you're doing.

Foobar

I find this one pretty dull. The vocal performance isn't what it needs to be, and it doesn't build to anything. Plodding, repetitive, distancing. When you're singing a syllable on two notes, try not to go "I can te-hell you why". It's easier to hit both notes when you put the h sound between them, but it usually sounds weak. The production is pretty solid, but sorry, I don't like this one.

DJ Ranger Den

We were warned that it was going to be infuriatingly short, so I was ready for it. Good play. Anyway, I like this one a lot. You sell the lyric so naturally that I'm right there with you; your vocal stylings are really excellent as usual. And that little sniff at the end was an inspired touch. What I like about this one is that it doesn't sound like you're reciting a diary entry, the imagery doesn't get piled on so thick. And yeah, too short, but not really. It works at this length. It would also work as the first verse of a longer song. Nitpicks: I would change it to "I like your blue eyes" instead of "liked". Also, Both the brother and the god are deemed "annoying", I'd pick a different word to describe the god. "imaginary"? Anyway, better than you probably think it is. Vote.

Otalgia

Terrific. Was it ok to laugh? I wasn't sure, but having the scary monster voice singing things like "Losing my sense of self" made me laugh. And the contrast with that voice and the actual singing parts was dramatic and interesting and well-executed. And nice guitar playing. This is a totally insignificant detail, but I appreciated how in the main guitar riff, the bass doesn't completely double the guitar tune, but drops out for a couple notes. Gives the riff some needed breathing room. Anyway, attention to that kind of detail makes me happy. The second verse-chorus was a little too much like the first, so I started to lose interest. You pulled me back with that big stylistic switch at the end, but it does sag a bit in the middle. Vote.

Ken's Super Duper Band n Stuff

Nicely done, but I got kind of bored, since the "chorus" is musically the same as the "verse". By the two minute mark I've heard that tune 8 times. Band fine, vocals fine, production fine, song boring. Sort of sounds like you phoned this one in. Also, where is all the high end on the guitars? Very muffled sounding.

Klownhole

Eight minutes! Sounds like you had fun. Also sounds like you were just messing around, like it took you maybe 15 minutes more to produce it than it does to listen to. Pretty tough to get all the way through.

Berkeley Social Scene

Not a lot to say about this one. Good playing, good production, but long and kind of boring.

Cord Smith

It's really hard to understand the lyrics, but I like the vocal style a lot. Nice solid performance. Chorus is catchy. And thank you for having one of I think only three songs in this fight under three minutes long. You just squeak in with a vote.

Steve Durand

It's ok. I like that you had a concept and went with it. But I don't think it's very interesting. I also think the vocal style is too straight-on for such an affected song.
Last edited by Jim of Seattle on Sun Apr 07, 2013 9:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Commit your tune to Sacrifice! (C&S review thread)

Post by Lunkhead »

Billy's Little Trip wrote:Otalgia! *flicks my bic*

Who's singing? The regular voice sounds a lot like Page Hamilton. Love it.
Ken wrote the lyrics, and I did everything else. The drums are sequenced, not live.
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Re: Commit your tune to Sacrifice! (C&S review thread)

Post by Billy's Little Trip »

Lunkhead wrote:
Billy's Little Trip wrote:Otalgia! *flicks my bic*

Who's singing? The regular voice sounds a lot like Page Hamilton. Love it.
Ken wrote the lyrics, and I did everything else. The drums are sequenced, not live.
Cool, you sound good. It's the doubled vocals or effect to give the doubled sound that gives'em the Helmet sound.
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Re: Commit your tune to Sacrifice! (C&S review thread)

Post by Lunkhead »

Thanks! I'm glad you liked it. I just wanted to up the hard rock quotient here a bit. I had fun so I'll probably try to do it again some time soon. Also, all the singing vocals are double-tracked, while the "cookie monster" stuff is single-tracked.
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Re: Commit your tune to Sacrifice! (C&S review thread)

Post by William Lane »

I wont bore you with a lot of blah blah blah as I am sure most people are a lot like myself and try to avoid sucking tornado's that absorb stuff and spew it out into a pile of garbage.

Key
A plus - kick ass
A - totally awesome
A minus - awesome

B plus - fantastic
B - great stuff
B minus - good stuff

C plus - enjoyable
C - listenable
C minus - falling asleep

D plus - cringing
D - ear pain
D minus - ears bleeding

F plus - nauseous
F - feeling sick
F minus - throwing up

Review of Commitment & Sacrifice


The Older Brothers - B minus, good stuff

Glennny - C, listenable

Kens Super Duper Band N' Stuff - B, great stuff

Otalgia - C, listenable

DJ Ranger Den - D, ear pain

Foobar - C plus, enjoyable

Jim Of Seattle - C minus, falling asleep

Takoyaki - D plus, cringing

Steve Durand - D plus, cringing

R. Mosquito - C, listenable

Hortus Ortus - A minus, awesome ( Turn your voice microphone up)

Paco Del Stinko - B, great stuff

Sonofasupercar - C, listenable

Klownhole - C minus, falling asleep

Cord Smith - A minus, awesome

Berkley Social Scene - B plus, fantastic
A good % of people that think they are songwriters are not songwriters at all, they are confused poets. The difference between writing song lyrics and writing poetry is 3 lengths of a fool. If you don't believe me lay down and measure it sometime.
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Re: Commit your tune to Sacrifice! (C&S review thread)

Post by Jim of Seattle »

Hey everyone, William Lane doesn't want any thoughtful reviews, with, like complete sentences blah blah blah. Sorry, William, I've adjusted my review for you below. Hope it's more helpful!
Here's my record label page thingie with stuff about me if you are so interested: https://greenmonkeyrecords.com/jim-of-seattle/
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Re: Commit your tune to Sacrifice! (C&S review thread)

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Jim of Seattle wrote:Hey everyone, William Lane doesn't want any thoughtful reviews, with, like complete sentences blah blah blah. Sorry, William, I've adjusted my review for you below. Hope it's more helpful!
This is very true, I personally don't want any thoughtful reviews because I find them pointless but that is just my opinion. I just want to know if a song is nice on the ears or not. However maybe some do want thoughtful reviews and that's all good too. I'm not knocking anyone that does...I just figure there are others like myself who just want the bottom line. To give you an example of what I mean by pointless : Review Kris Kristoffersons "Why Me Lord" I cant say anything good about it except its damn sure listenable and it made buku's of mulah.

Why Me Lord - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mBADk6dmGMI

I meant no offense to anyone's preference. I guess I am just a, its good sounding or its bad sounding, kind of person and that cant be determined by the specific, it can only be determined by the general....guess that's why there is a vote among many opinions...sorry if I gave offense to anyone, it wasn't intentional.
A good % of people that think they are songwriters are not songwriters at all, they are confused poets. The difference between writing song lyrics and writing poetry is 3 lengths of a fool. If you don't believe me lay down and measure it sometime.
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Re: Commit your tune to Sacrifice! (C&S review thread)

Post by Billy's Little Trip »

There are no rules on how one reviews a fight. Any review is better than none. But hey, you like it or you don't. Nobody owes anyone an explanation. It's a privilege, not a right. Besides, reviews are mostly biased opinions, unless they are pointing out the obvious. Like, hey, you hit a sour note.

I will say I got a good chuckle at how Willy spent more time on his review rating system than he did on his reviews, lol. To each his own. ;)

Review reviews:
Jim of Seattle = B- Great Stuff

William Lane = C minus - Falling Asleep

Review system reviews:
Jim of Seattle = A plus - Kick ass. I like the way you give a good review as you hear it. Then I like how you feel it's worthy of a vote or not at the end of your comments.

William Lane = C minus - Falling Asleep. I don't understand why you have both the minus symbol and the word minus, They both mean the same thing, yet you give them two different levels. Wouldn't a rating system of this veriety be better as "A+, A, A-"? Of course, this is just my biased opinion. :D

Just having fun, guys. I'm on the coffee and oatmeal cookies. :P
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Re: Commit your tune to Sacrifice! (C&S review thread)

Post by Hortus Ortus »

DJ Ranger Den: I really like the tonality of your voice. I also like the simplicity of what sounds like a Wurlitzer piano. Nice.

Paco del Stinko: I like the energy behind your song and the strings really are a great addition.

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Re: Commit your tune to Sacrifice! (C&S review thread)

Post by Jim of Seattle »

William Lane wrote:
Jim of Seattle wrote:Hey everyone, William Lane doesn't want any thoughtful reviews, with, like complete sentences blah blah blah. Sorry, William, I've adjusted my review for you below. Hope it's more helpful!
This is very true, I personally don't want any thoughtful reviews because I find them pointless but that is just my opinion. I just want to know if a song is nice on the ears or not. However maybe some do want thoughtful reviews and that's all good too. I'm not knocking anyone that does...I just figure there are others like myself who just want the bottom line. To give you an example of what I mean by pointless : Review Kris Kristoffersons "Why Me Lord" I cant say anything good about it except its damn sure listenable and it made buku's of mulah.

Why Me Lord - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mBADk6dmGMI

I meant no offense to anyone's preference. I guess I am just a, its good sounding or its bad sounding, kind of person and that cant be determined by the specific, it can only be determined by the general....guess that's why there is a vote among many opinions...sorry if I gave offense to anyone, it wasn't intentional.
I guess I don't get it. There are five hundred reasons why one might give a song "C plus-minus" or whatever. Maybe the guitars are too loud, or the lyrics are corny, or the vocals are sharp, or the chorus is too repetitive, or the clavichord is panned to far, or the tune is boring, or the drums are muffled, or the background singers are off the beat, or the ...... I for one find this kind of feedback useful. Your method, on the other hand, gives no indication why a person might have rated a song with a particular score. And what if everything about the song is awesome, but the guitar solo is so bad that it brings the whole song down? If all you got were a bunch of letter grades, next week you might decide the song was no good but the guitar solo was great, and actually make a worse song than the previous week.

Imho, your method isn't really criticism, it's closer to heckling.
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Re: Commit your tune to Sacrifice! (C&S review thread)

Post by glennny »

I agree with BLT, any review is better than no review. However you make many good points JoS.
also, I thought "Fantastic" was better than "awesome".
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Re: Commit your tune to Sacrifice! (C&S review thread)

Post by Billy's Little Trip »

glennny wrote:I thought "Fantastic" was better than "awesome".
I think they are equal.

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Re: Commit your tune to Sacrifice! (C&S review thread)

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Jim of Seattle wrote: I guess I don't get it. There are five hundred reasons why one might give a song "C plus-minus" or whatever. Maybe the guitars are too loud, or the lyrics are corny, or the vocals are sharp, or the chorus is too repetitive, or the clavichord is panned to far, or the tune is boring, or the drums are muffled, or the background singers are off the beat, or the ...... I for one find this kind of feedback useful. Your method, on the other hand, gives no indication why a person might have rated a song with a particular score. And what if everything about the song is awesome, but the guitar solo is so bad that it brings the whole song down? If all you got were a bunch of letter grades, next week you might decide the song was no good but the guitar solo was great, and actually make a worse song than the previous week.

Imho, your method isn't really criticism, it's closer to heckling.

Maybe the guitars are too loud and maybe the lyrics are corny....but all those perspectives are merely opinions...maybe i thought the guitars were perfect or the lyrics were awesome....my review is no worse or better than yours, just different, that's all. Yours breaks down your opinions and mine simply just gets to the point of mine. Its the votes that matter ad as long as people vote what they like and dont like and not vote just because they know a person or are used to them, then that is something worth paying attention to...in other words if 9 out of 10 people think your song sucks, then it probably does and maybe you might want to work on it. I would certainly hope that no artist would take just your opinion or mine as any indication that they are great or that they suck. Its all good and by the way.... I didnt use minus and (-) in the same line...the dash is simply that a dash...I used the word minus specifically so you wouldn't confuse them. Guess it didnt work for some :?
A good % of people that think they are songwriters are not songwriters at all, they are confused poets. The difference between writing song lyrics and writing poetry is 3 lengths of a fool. If you don't believe me lay down and measure it sometime.
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Re: Commit your tune to Sacrifice! (C&S review thread)

Post by William Lane »

Even American Idol has 3 judges....How many times has Simon said someone was awful while the other two said they were great? Sheesh, I just wanted to give my review in the manner in which I liked because to me a person may or may not get my music and thats fine...For instance Jims review of my song said the music was spacey...well that's friggin awesome because it was supposed to be, hence the spaceship sounding stuff at the beginning and the end...I wanted to be like the song was landing, delivering, and then leaving...he said exactly what I wanted to hear but at the same time he just didn't get it, whereas someone else probably did. So you see I just want to know if a song is decent or not...the specifics to me are really kind of pointless because hey, maybe they just dont get it!.....However, if 10 people tell me its awful then by god that means something to me.
A good % of people that think they are songwriters are not songwriters at all, they are confused poets. The difference between writing song lyrics and writing poetry is 3 lengths of a fool. If you don't believe me lay down and measure it sometime.
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Re: Commit your tune to Sacrifice! (C&S review thread)

Post by William Lane »

Billy's Little Trip wrote:There are no rules on how one reviews a fight. Any review is better than none. But hey, you like it or you don't. Nobody owes anyone an explanation. It's a privilege, not a right. Besides, reviews are mostly biased opinions, unless they are pointing out the obvious. Like, hey, you hit a sour note.

I will say I got a good chuckle at how Willy spent more time on his review rating system than he did on his reviews, lol. To each his own. ;)

Review reviews:
Jim of Seattle = B- Great Stuff

William Lane = C minus - Falling Asleep

Review system reviews:
Jim of Seattle = A plus - Kick ass. I like the way you give a good review as you hear it. Then I like how you feel it's worthy of a vote or not at the end of your comments.

William Lane = C minus - Falling Asleep. I don't understand why you have both the minus symbol and the word minus, They both mean the same thing, yet you give them two different levels. Wouldn't a rating system of this veriety be better as "A+, A, A-"? Of course, this is just my biased opinion. :D

Just having fun, guys. I'm on the coffee and oatmeal cookies. :P
LOL...not true! I listened to every song from beginning to end...also I prefer not to say who I voted for except to the ones I actually voted for and that's if I choose to reveal that to them. By the way, the best song ever written is from the movie The Green Mile...Barbecue, me and you, stanky, panky, pew pew pew!.....now that is kick ass! right?.....lmao
A good % of people that think they are songwriters are not songwriters at all, they are confused poets. The difference between writing song lyrics and writing poetry is 3 lengths of a fool. If you don't believe me lay down and measure it sometime.
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Re: Commit your tune to Sacrifice! (C&S review thread)

Post by Jim of Seattle »

William Lane wrote:Even American Idol has 3 judges....How many times has Simon said someone was awful while the other two said they were great? Sheesh, I just wanted to give my review in the manner in which I liked because to me a person may or may not get my music and thats fine...For instance Jims review of my song said the music was spacey...well that's friggin awesome because it was supposed to be, hence the spaceship sounding stuff at the beginning and the end...I wanted to be like the song was landing, delivering, and then leaving...he said exactly what I wanted to hear but at the same time he just didn't get it, whereas someone else probably did. So you see I just want to know if a song is decent or not...the specifics to me are really kind of pointless because hey, maybe they just dont get it!.....However, if 10 people tell me its awful then by god that means something to me.
There are not enough pixels on my hi-res screen for me to list out all the ways I disagree with you, but carry on.
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Re: Commit your tune to Sacrifice! (C&S review thread)

Post by glennny »

William, I appreciate your reviews. Thanks! It's nice you listened, and I am happy to hear the grade I received from you.

However a Jim of Seattle review is the kind of review that is the most valuable thing about Song Fight. I have differing opinions about songwriting and other nuances, but his criticisms are sound and I've taken them to heart. I may not share his exact perspective, but it's fantastic (better than awesome) to hear things from his perspective. I think I've improved vastly as a solo artist, and that's in large part to reviews like I get from Jim of Seattle. I feel guilty I haven't been reviewing lately, i feel I do owe the community that. Now if only I can figure out what "sparkle" means on my vocals.
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Re: Commit your tune to Sacrifice! (C&S review thread)

Post by Jim of Seattle »

glennny wrote:Now if only I can figure out what "sparkle" means on my vocals.
High end. I heard a song today that had TOO MUCH sparkle on the guitars (cool song though):
http://www.songfight.org/music/dark_all ... s_dark.mp3

And thanks for the vote of appreciation! Asking people to listen to whatever music squirts out of my head feels like "taking". I try to give back with reviews.
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Location: Longmont, CO

Re: Commit your tune to Sacrifice! (C&S review thread)

Post by LibraryDogs »

For what it's worth, I feel like my arrangement and songwriting skills have gotten better as I try to write more detailed reviews.
Hence when I review your song I do it as much for me as for you.
:-)

Actually, I sort of wish people would be a little more critical with their reviews. Most of you guys have at least something to teach the rest of us.
Y'know, even if your opinion is totally completely wrong. :p
“We may be in the Universe as dogs and cats are in our libraries, seeing the books and hearing the conversation, but having no inkling of the meaning of it all.”
― William James
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Jim of Seattle
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Re: Commit your tune to Sacrifice! (C&S review thread)

Post by Jim of Seattle »

nobodyetal wrote:when I review your song I do it as much for me as for you.
Funny, I was coming back online just now to write the very same thought. I've learned way more by reviewing other people than by getting reviewed. (Not to say I don't love that dopamine rush when I get a good review, I'm still living off some of my "Dodged a Bullet" reviews...) Something about having to organize your thoughts into coherent sentences that makes it hit home or something. I read once that the best way to learn how to play a video game is to watch someone who's really good at it already AND someone who gets killed on Level 1 every time.

As for being more critical, the big problem with writing a really critical review here is that you're doing so into a vacuum. Usually I have no idea if the person I'm reviewing is some fragile soul who just needs to be validated for having written a song at all, or a hardened veteran who could care less what anyone thinks. Without that crucial context, I think it's better to err on the gentler side. "You got to be kind", tee hee.

So I'll take this moment to officially state: When I first came on Song Fight in 2003 I feel like I was sort of a dick. I'm hereby apologizing most sincerely if that was the case, to anyone who is still around now and was also around then, and who thought I was a dick, and who still may have that impression. I'm pretty embarrassed when I think back on some of the shit I spewed at you people. I'm sorry, I want to be nicer.
Here's my record label page thingie with stuff about me if you are so interested: https://greenmonkeyrecords.com/jim-of-seattle/
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