Unpack your reviews (suitcase)

Discuss upcoming, current, and previous song fights.
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Paco Del Stinko
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Re: Unpack your reviews (suitcase)

Post by Paco Del Stinko » Tue Jun 24, 2014 4:17 pm

Some very good songs this week, a few true gems. Not a lot of stank, either. Good work, peoples!

Airlines - This is pleasant, nice melody. Is it overdubbed guitar or two live? I do and don't like the start/stop business, but enjoy the parts after they re-start. Good bridge, song wouldn't suffer if a small chunk were chopped off.

Anastasia Elizabeth - Nice vocals and mood. I like it better when it starts strumming and gets a wee bit dark, it takes the edge off of the cuteness. Good harmony vocal work, too. I can hear a thick but clean electric guitar in here, but of course I do. Come back again, with a different angle.

Berkeley Social Scene
- Almost mopey, but not really. Great dark progression, as it turns out, I like that. Then happy again, yay! I think when Ken sings, things start sounding like they should have walking on the beach montages. (?) Super bridge and tasty lead with tasty tone. Overlapping vocals at the end might be fun.

Burnzi - Very nice. The playing is fine and singing very good. Almost a modern country type hook on the chorus, which I hate to say, except that it's much better than any of that stuff. Mood is excellent. Guitar is very Wish You Were Here Pink Floyd. Heh. I question the doubling of the vocal on the chorus, weird and unnecessary. I'd like to hear a slightly different ending, too, but that's me, obviously.

The Chocolate Chips - Right on. Pink streams and ribbons flowing from my speakers. Love the trippy delay, groovy bass line, and totally dig the bridge. That part is as psychedelic as it comes and the transition out is tops. Great work start to finish, even if it ends a bit abruptly.

Cody Walker Jr. - Sweet guitar tones all the way, and (mostly) nailed the steel to boot. This is a rare instrumental that somehow implies the title. I don't know how, but it works. Excellent work, I'll take it as a challenge to step up my guitaring game.

Darrick Lucas - Fleeced Fauxes meets The Wall. I like the instrumentation although some bottom end is sorely missing. Not crazy about the drums until they get going near the end. I like the verses best although they might be too grey feeling. Good start.

Henderson - Did you used to work with the Big Crouton? I can't remember. I dig the chill (or whatever it's called) vibe here, and the mellow vocal with easy melody. Simple but cool groove. I like the verses better than the choruses, but only because the chorus gets choppy feeling. Better when she sings it, could still be headier, maybe less choir patch too. Good work though.

Holly Furlone - Good earthy vocal, I'm waiting for the snap of crsip Telecasters and maple snare. Regardless, an engaging performance, sounds coffee house-ish. And the chorus is simple yet strong, effective. This works as is, and would not suffer with a small band arrangement either, I say.

johndisk0 - Needs some chunga-chunga beats bigger than they are and snippy snap snare. The vocals are very reading off the paper sounding, and only a few lines are easy to follow. You'd probably get away with this more if it had a bridge or change-up of some sort along the way. Keep at it, be bold.

Jon Eric Burdon Minus The Animals- Nice melancholy feel here, not the often spritley jaunt that you tackle, I dig it. Guitaring sounds fine, by the way. There are a couple of times that I want to hear your voice soar during the verses, but that is probably a fault of mine. It's nice to be left wanting soemtimes. A very good song, thank you.

Kevin Mellows - This is very good, and should contend for the win. The melodies are excellent, late Beatles, early solo McCartney at times. Wonderful playing and the right instrumentation. Love the guitar progression and am jealous of the playing. There might be some backing vocals missing, simple and back in the mix. I like the early feeling ending. Very good, sir, hats off.

Lightning Shark - Just missing the rapt bar patrons at closing tiome, hushed to silence. Call it a toss off if you want, I wouldn't. Exciting compared to last week's punker, I am eager to hear what else you have up your sleeve. I could never msuter the patience to attempt this and would DEFINTITELY be a clown (!) if I tried. A bit silly at end, but loose and real. Keep'em coming, Kipster.

Nick Soma - I almost feel like I should be heading out to sea then this grows and matures as it goes. Oh boy, I wish I could write like this. There is no need for a band here, it is so full sounding with full but relatively straight forward accompaniment. The end falls off a bit, but it doesn't matter as this one bears repaeting. Excellent.

Only Doing This Once
- I want to like this but am struggling. Sounds like the opening band at a stadium metal show. For that I applaud you, but Stiv Bators is dead and not a vampire. Heh. More Stiv, less vampire.

Paco del Stinko
- I was mildy proud of the chorus bass line in here and guitar and kick sounds. Silly, but was fun to do. And I LOVE feedback that sings, even if briefly.

Petrified Computer - Nice endless intro and good progression. What nice singing and traveling melody, I admire the starts here and ends there completeness of this. Traditional yet fresh. Mmm! Sounds like a nice meal. Nearly strays into things we've heard before, but stays true to its influences without ripping them off.

Pigfarmer Jr
- I like the attitude that you are gong for here, but it needs to be uglier to push it over the cliff. The skipping repeat is a clever trick, but not a long lasting 'joke'. Really, it's the vocal that perhaps if you had hurt yourself doing, would have finished this off. I'm glad you didn't wreck your voice, but the vocal is the holdout here.

SoFa Productions Inc. - Coldish, but the subtle embellishmnts help. The programming is good, but the stiffness is what's making it feel cold. I like the progression and vocals, and although when it first started I was oddly hankering for an Uli Roth dive bomb solo, I very muchlike the Strat tones instead. I like this, I just want ot hear it feel a little more organic.

Thank glennny for the Frisbee - Zippy Friz. Or Frisky Friz and the Glentones. This is sunny and often manic, straying into weird but not so far that it doesn't come back. If it were totally straight forward it might lose some charm, the start and last third of the song are my favorite. Stick around, Friz!

toby roktot
- Just when I was thinking strings were going to come in to support the piano, the AM radio Ramones came on. Ha! The concept is mostly good, I think, but the vocals could use more polish in the delivery department. Funny, kinda kinky, but a better performance would help. Interesting scratchpad.
Bringin' the stink since 2006.
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Kip Lightning
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Re: Unpack your reviews (suitcase)

Post by Kip Lightning » Wed Jun 25, 2014 3:37 pm

Yeah, I did pass this song off as garbage first, but listening to it with all the others, it's not bad. I wrote it around midnight I think the night before and had I listened to my head I wouldn't have sent it. But listening to my head has got me about 200+ songs that no one has ever heard on my hardrive.
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codywalkerjr
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Re: Unpack your reviews (suitcase)

Post by codywalkerjr » Wed Jun 25, 2014 7:43 pm

I hope I don't offend anyone, I like to mention that certain submissions remind me of songs I've heard..

Airlines Guitar sounds a bit honky, I don't like the fact that there is a guitar melody playing behind the vocal in the beginning , kind of takes away from the vocal.. Vocal work is good, Good timbre,


Anastasia Elizabeth
The production here is good. You have an interesting way of pronouncing your words. this recording sounds very raw and unprocessed. I like that. A quarter note bass drum track might have helped push this song along.


Berkeley Social Scene The intro synth gets your attention. I like that BSS has a very signature sound.. this particular mix is very fat . Solo is tasty.


BurnziThe guitar seems a bit overcompressed which gives it the very glassy sustainy 'AutoHarpy' tone, which I actually kinda like here. :).. Your voice sounds nice in the intro. something happens on the B section.. Vocal Doubler? I don't know but it changes the tone in a way that I don't like.. Seems to happen several times in the song. Maybe I like the verses but not the chorus.. This sounds 1 backwards baseball cap shy of a Bro Country song.. Be careful :) Good Job Though.

The Chocolate Chips Whoah!!!! Dude, I love this intro, and it leads into a VERY COOL groove that reminded me of Beck.. .. I love the space you created in this song... The drums sound super rad!!! I like everything about this song.. Chorus melody is awesome and kind of reminds me of The Smiths - There is A Light That Never Goes out



Darrick Lucas Nice strings.. Vocals/arrangement are teetering on the line between Genius and Strange.. I think it sounds Epic.. Especially when the drums kick in. Digging the syncopated drum groove at the end . I commend you for your time spent and talent put into the song..


Henderson Reminds me of AIR!! Those two French electronic guys.. Its cool.. Mellow and relaxing.. Super clean tones! great choice of chords and instruments.. Awesome Voices in the chorus. RADICAL Bassline. The chic has a sexy voice which adds a cool texture to the tune.
The "Aaahs" get a little much at the end, like the analogy. " Once, Twice but never thrice". Don't wear it out ya know.... SUPER JOB Though!! LOVE IT!


Holly Furlone sounds like you are a bit too far away from the mic in a small room. I'm hearing some of your room come through in the recording.... .Easy Chord Progression done pretty well. .Voice is nice in a raw unpolished way.. I can imagine a bunch of people, sitting around a campfire, passing some whiskey, while you sing this one..


johndisk0 I don't like any hip hop or rap unless it is insanely good. So no offense but I can't give you a good review because I do not have an appreciation for this kind of music..


Jon EricReminds me of house of the Rising Sun a bit.. I think this song is lacking some texture. The guitar and keys playing the same chords, gets a little bit repetitive.. But cool tune though..


Kevin MellowsThis has a nice intro that draws me in. You have a unique voice, sounds vey throaty, but it works with the song. overall good production on this song, very nice mix.


Lightning SharkDamn, Were you high at the end there? Not in a mean way......, but that is a " I just smoked a doobie" giggle at the end ... I don't particularly like the minimalist thing you have here. It moves very slow, and the tones needed for this kind of performance are not really there.. IMO..


Nick Soma OK Dude, I love this choice of instrumentation....BUT, sounds like the guitar is DI (I friggin' hate DI Acoustic Guitar.. Sounds) and its TOO LOUD.. drowning out the other COOL instruments.. I think I hear some banjo and mandolin drowning in the backround ???


Only Doing This Once
I am from Jacksonville FL. There was a punk musician named Stevie (Ray) Stiletto who achieved legendary status here ( Actually all over the world) . He died just over a year ago.... Anyway, Your music reminded me of him, He was a really rad guy, who lived a hard life and never gave up on music. Please, Check him out if you get a chance, They made a documentary about him before he passed. I liked your song, it reminded me of Ray


Paco del Stinko you are a very talented and creative musician.. I always find your stuff over the top and interesting. good Job


Petrified ComputerI hate Billy Joel's music... Not your fault but this reminded me of Piano Man at times.. you get 50 points for having banjo in the song..its very effective.. but... coming from a world of bluegrass, I'd say you should have kept the banjo after the solo to play fill stuff and chop on the snare beat...it just seems to drop out of the mix abruptly


Pigfarmer Jr If this is satirical, Then I really dig it.. if not, then I don't know what to think of it.
. Punk musicians never seem to understand that politicians don't listen to punk music . Therefore, making political statements in punk music is a waste of time ..
, IMO.. its catchy as hell though.. pack your fuckin suitcase!


SoFa Productions Inc.The pentatonicky guitar solo is strange but it actually works with this song...the groove is nice..I can see an entire subgenre spawning from this song.. good job....:) I genuinely like this tune..


Thank glennny for the Frisbeeis that a UKE? or a Mandolin? Cool instruments this week.. Nice choice of chords, Drums sound over squashed in certain parts.. Good stuff

toby roktotBy the way, Your Bitter Monday is a favorite song in my household, My daughter and I love it.. It really grew on us..
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Pigfarmer Jr
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Re: Unpack your reviews (suitcase)

Post by Pigfarmer Jr » Wed Jun 25, 2014 8:18 pm

codywalkerjr wrote: Pigfarmer Jr If this is satirical, Then I really dig it.. if not, then I don't know what to think of it.
. Punk musicians never seem to understand that politicians don't listen to punk music . Therefore, making political statements in punk music is a waste of time ..
, IMO.. its catchy as hell though.. pack your fuckin suitcase!
It isn't really satire, sorry. [WARNING: Political Views Ahead] It's asking the question is supporting McCain and the other chicken hawks (and the democrat equivalent) worth risking your life or worth drone bombing wedding parties and school children. Maybe the answer is yes for you. But let's not fool ourselves into thinking killing isn't at least in part supporting politicians with ulterior motives who have no qualms drone bombing wedding parties and school children to support the military industrial complex. (Full disclosure, I'm a libertarian (small L) and would just assume kick out both parties.) [END RANT]

And I don't give a fuck about no politician. Punk is for the people not the elected scum.

Thank you for the review and rock on!
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glennny
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Re: Unpack your reviews (suitcase)

Post by glennny » Wed Jun 25, 2014 11:41 pm

Thank glennny for the Frisbeeis that a UKE? or a Mandolin? Cool instruments this week.. Nice choice of chords, Drums sound over squashed in certain parts.. Good stuff
That is indeed a mandolin. You may notice the lyric in the song " Amanda Lynne fits in a suitcase....."
Thanks for the review!
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
Holly Furlone
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Re: Unpack your reviews (suitcase)

Post by Holly Furlone » Thu Jun 26, 2014 4:27 am

Thanks for the reviews and suggestions. I did actually record this in my bathroom, mostly out of "necessity" but ended up kind of liking the sound quality--or at least could see the potential in how it might sound once I someday figure out how to use the settings on garageband :) When I finally got my shit together to submit something, the bathroom was the only room in the house that wasn't picking up the lawnmowing going on outside. Live and learn. I haven't purchased the condensor mic that was suggested last time (still planning on it) but learned enough about the iPad garageband app that I saw it as a step up from the cell phone recording. Here's to progress! I'll keep working on the options for the bridge and maybe a harmony part or two. Cheers!
Toby Roktot
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Re: Unpack your reviews (suitcase)

Post by Toby Roktot » Thu Jun 26, 2014 5:24 pm

To everyone posting a review of my as yet unworthy submissions.....thanks so much!! I enjoy all info and appreciate all opinions. I keep thinking I have a good song in me.......just hard to get it out, if ever!!
thx agn,
Toby

ps sorry jon..
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Generic
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Re: Unpack your reviews (suitcase)

Post by Generic » Fri Jun 27, 2014 11:20 am

I've been listening in random order. I think I've got them all at least once. I hope I'll be able to get a full set of reviews in, but until then here's some impressions of the things that stuck out at me.

If this were still the old one-vote days, Henderson would have gotten my vote. Since we're doing multivotes, he's going to share the honor with Burnzi, Lightning Shark, and the one and only Paco del Stinko. Overall it's a pretty good fight! I've noticed a few people repeated sections unnecessarily and winding up with songs that are a bit too long as a result (and yeah, mine might be guilty of that too, so don't take it too personally).

Darrick Lucas - Your recording is pristine, but it sounds like some of your instruments are clashing, like the parts were recorded without listening to each other. I'd love it if that reverb that pops up every so often were timed with the tempo of the song. Yours is the only entry that I thought wasn't long enough, and not in that "Keep 'em wanting more" way; I really feel like there's a whole second section of this song that needs to be developed.

johndisk0 - I'm not going to lie, this song isn't very good. It has recording issues, performance issues, flow issues, and writing issues. But don't ever let jerks like me writing mean reviews of your stuff online stop you. Listen to a lot of rap music (not just Nerdcore; allow a broad range of influences to reach you), get a better handle for how flow works, and keep working at it! I don't hear a whole lot of cyberpunk hip-hop (well, besides the obvious), so points for having that nugget of an idea, even if it was executed poorly.

Nick Soma - I want to say you should record a children's album some time, but I think there's some darkness creeping around the edges here. Good work, and I look forward to hearing the continuing saga!

Lightning Shark - Man, I wish I could pin down why your "breaking" works so well in this song when so many others have failed at doing songs like this. I usually try to think critically when I'm listening to songs like this and reviewing them, but I think it just boils down to this: You've got soul, man. Your song made me smile wide, and I loved it.
"Warren Zevon would be proud." -Reve Mosquito

Jon Eric - Get your feel on.
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Kevin Mellows
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Re: Unpack your reviews (suitcase)

Post by Kevin Mellows » Fri Jun 27, 2014 3:49 pm

glennny wrote:I think we have a winner! This is fantastic!
Thank you very much!!! This comment made my week :D

Pigfarmer Jr wrote:Living up to your name on a nice mellow track.
Hehe, I got a reputation to keep.

JeffHenderson wrote:I dig the sound. I really like the chord change that happens around 40 seconds in. The music really matches the traveling theme of the song. I could totally see it in a travel montage in a movie.
Thanks man. When I first thought about "suitcase" the first thing that came to mind was the idea of travelling. It feels like travelling because the drums plat a "train beat". You can hear how they chug along like a train.

Heine wrote:Very clean production. Very well done. One of my favorites this time.


Thanks! This was my first time trying out a new condenser mic (MXL V88). I don't normally use it because my apartment has too much ambient noise to use a condenser mic with. Sooooo... I actually recorded the vocals in my parent's basement while they were away at work, lol.

Paco Del Stinko wrote:This is very good, and should contend for the win. The melodies are excellent, late Beatles, early solo McCartney at times. Wonderful playing and the right instrumentation. Love the guitar progression and am jealous of the playing. There might be some backing vocals missing, simple and back in the mix. I like the early feeling ending. Very good, sir, hats off.
Thank you sir! You're not the first to mention a lack of backing vocals. I was working on having some, but I ran out of time and didn't want them to be half-assed. Next fight I'm in I will make sure I have some. As for the guitar, it's a finger picking technique I recently learned called "Travis picking". I'm sure you can find YouTube videos on it if you're interested. I will confess though, that I did cheat with the guitar part- I originally played the song in D major but needed to move it to Bb major so it would fit my voice better. I don't have the playing ability to transpose it, so, I just recorded it in D and wholesale pitch-shifted the guitar part down 4 semitones. Everything else on the track is played in Bb. If you listen closely the guitar part sounds a little wierd. Now you know the secret, haha.


codywalkerjr wrote:This has a nice intro that draws me in. You have a unique voice, sounds vey throaty, but it works with the song. overall good production on this song, very nice mix.
Thanks man! I think you're right about my voice. I don't have a huge range and a lot of the sound does seem to come from the throat. I wish to take vocal lessons, but I need to save some money first. I mixed this with Reaper, but I tried a new technique. When I finished mixing it, I bounced it all down into a stereo track and mastered it. Ha, I think I have a lot to learn about mastering but one thing I did that I thought was nice was I added a bit of compression and tape saturation before limiting it. I think I'm going to do more of that for future tracks.

-Kevin
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Kip Lightning
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Re: Unpack your reviews (suitcase)

Post by Kip Lightning » Fri Jun 27, 2014 3:58 pm

Generic wrote: Lightning Shark - Man, I wish I could pin down why your "breaking" works so well in this song when so many others have failed at doing songs like this. I usually try to think critically when I'm listening to songs like this and reviewing them, but I think it just boils down to this: You've got soul, man. Your song made me smile wide, and I loved it.
Thanks, I really appreciate it. Im trying to get a review done, so busy!!!
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Generic
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Re: Unpack your reviews (suitcase)

Post by Generic » Mon Jun 30, 2014 11:29 am

Short, random reviews.

SoFa - I like the moody vibe and the pizzicato strings, but I don't care for your lyrics. It's all pretty silly, mixing a faux-political message about the security state with some rap-like braggadocio. I don't think it all fits together well, but you're obviously pretty accomplished musically, so better luck next time, eh?

Thank glennny - The opening reminds me of a laid-back "Me and Julio." I'm a sucker for a nice mandolin groove. There are a couple of points where either the vocals or the mandolin feel slightly out of pocket... I don't know, it's difficult to hear what's hitting me, but something feels a little off.

BSS - Your choice of synth creates a nice soothing 80s-ballad vibe. Not my genre of choice, but you nailed it. I like the bassline and the lyrics. Oh, something tugs at me near the end there - did you do something wonky with your time signature?

Only Doing This Once - Loud loud loud. Still, I can hear some melody and structure fighting to anchor this song, keeping it from being a total mess. This sounds a bit like a fantasy collaboration between Paco del Stinko and Naked Philosophy. I like both of those guys, so you're all right with me.

PigFarmer Jr. - I wish your vocal had more power and oomph to match the angry instrumentation. Compress it? Double it? Shout one of them? Shout both? I don't know, but the message gets practically lost because of how weak the vocals are here. I do like the "Die, die, die... for nothin'." Not sure what you're trying to get at with the record scratches.

Holly Furlone - Did you separate the guitar and vocal into separate takes for this song? The vocal doesn't have the immediacy of that other song I voted for some time ago. If you're doing multitracking now, I suggest adding some harmonies, they can build and maintain interest in that long section near the end where you repeat the same line about 24 times.

More to come soon!
"Warren Zevon would be proud." -Reve Mosquito

Jon Eric - Get your feel on.
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Re: Unpack your reviews (suitcase)

Post by chocolatechips » Tue Jul 01, 2014 9:18 am

I was away for the past week so these are some late reviews (and also why I had no chance to submit a song for "The Lurker" even though I really liked that title.) These are all just based on one/first listen ...

Anastasia Elizabeth - Pretty vocals (but could be recorded more clearly) will take you far. I've heard of people complaining about "production fight" ... but to me it often seems more like "vocals fight" ... but you know, vocals are what most listeners care most about so having a nice voice automatically gives you a big advantage over most of the competition ! So ... about the song; it's pretty good and quite cute but doesn't really grab my attention beyond the pretty vocals.

Berkeley Social Scene - Good stuff, nice slow burner. Reminds me a bit of '90s Weezer. I like it, but it's not one that really grabs me on first listen - I can imagine it growing on me on multiple listens though.

Burnzi - I'm not a fan of this kind of guitar tone - sounds like a plugged in acoustic. Sounds a bit too country for me. Also, the vocals sound very "boxy." Maybe vocals mixed a bit too loud too. Those are my complaints - on the other side, it sounds like a pretty good song for this style (although not my thing really) and the vocal performance is pretty good.

The Chocolate Chips - I'm pretty happy with this track, especially considering I did it mostly in one day. . Youtube video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jTLLg0ENJv0

Cody Walker Jr. - Real sweet guitar playing, cool subtle percussion. I found this quite enjoyable.

Darrick Lucas - I'm not usually one to complain about lyrics but the rhymes here at the beginning a bit distracting. On the positive side - the vocals are strong and the arrangement/production is very good. The whole thing is a bit dreary until it kicks into gear around 1:45 ... that's an unexpected and welcome change. Still as a whole it seems a bit slight ... not particularly memorable.

Henderson - I like the bassline. Wasn't expecting that vocalist change! Interesting. This is quite good. I am really digging the trippy little sounds floating around ... I also like the "ahhh" backing chorus vocals ... very dreamy. I think those may be an acquired taste though, I can imagine them being quite off putting to others (haven't read your other reviews... curious to see what others thought of 'em.) VOTE. :mrgreen:

Holly Furlone - Not just guy n guitar, girl n guitar too ! Nice song and good vocals but I can't think of much else to say on one listen.

johndisk - I like the intention (some of the trippy sounds in the background) but it doesn't work. Rap flow needs much work ... also doing a rap track with almost no drumbeat is probably not the best idea.

Jon Eric - Has a bit of a Beatles White Album feel to it which is a big positive for me as a bit of a Beatles freak. I'm a big fan of the backing vocals (which remind me a bit of "Junk" by Paul McCartney) ... sounds maybe almost too loose at times (the guitar parts) but overall I quite like it. :mrgreen: VOTE.

Kevin Mellows - This one oozes personality. Dig it. The vocals aren't perfect ... but they are good enough to carry what is probably my favorite song so far. As I keep listening yes... definitely my favorite so far. Great tune. This one makes me smile. :mrgreen: VOTE.

Lightning Shark - Nice. Reminds me a bit of laid back acoustic Rolling Stones. Good whistling ! Yes, it could use some filling out ... some percussion could really add to that Stones vibe I'm picking up.

Nick Soma - I feel like I should like this but it doesn't really work for me ... maybe the melody needs a bit more space ... it seems a bit exhausting to listen to (maybe over compressed mix too?). Could just be that I'm not in the right mood though. It's a pretty cool song really...

Only Doing This Once - Not too bad, but a bit messy.

Paco - Cool dynamics ... great production/mix. Instrumentally I really dig this one but I'm not crazy about most of the vocal parts.

Petrified Computer - Wasn't expecting a guy n guitar song with this band name. Sounds very much like a traditional folk song ... well done if not particularly exciting.

Pigfarmer Jr. - I like the chorus "pack your fuckin' suitcase" with the melody also picked up by the heavy guitar ... the whole thing is ... OK, but doesn't really work for some reason I'm having a hard time putting my finger on. Maybe it's the drums ... maybe too loose. Not sure. Mix could be better even as a punkish lofi type song ...

SoFa - Interesting track. I was kind of expecting some sort of hip-hop song when the instrumental started ... but you took it in a quite different direction. I think this is a song I could quite get into with multiple listens but on a first listen it's hard to know what to make of it (this is often an indication of something really original/interesting... so that can be a good thing.)

Thank Glenny - Makes me think of Paul Simon's Graceland album. Caught some lyrics in there about cutting up a girl and putting her in a suitcase (I think) ... nice touch. Really nice mix. Cool song, great playing. In the running for my favorite song of the fight. VOTE. :mrgreen:

Toby Roktot - I like the idea of the minimalist piano ... but vocals & melody have to be extremely strong to make that work and this doesn't work for me. And then ... the crash of music coming in didn't work at all ... it sounds very underwhelming when it happens instead of blowing the listener away which seems like the intention... I think the real problem with the song is that the vocals just don't have a good rhythm to them ... they sound almost like you made up the vocal as you went along. Sounds awkward.

... votes/green faces to my four favorites ...
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Generic
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Re: Unpack your reviews (suitcase)

Post by Generic » Tue Jul 01, 2014 11:00 am

Here are some more reviews.

Toby Roktot - If your voice were lower, the slower moody sections could have passed for a lost Johnny Cash song. I appreciate the dynamics, but the transitions don't work very well in the song's current state, and the two "loud" sections don't really have the force or "oomph" I suspect you were going for. I also think it would have worked better if those two sections hadn't had the exact same lyrics, since the song is a narrative story, and it doesn't feel right to have the exact same scene happen two different times.

Kevin Mellows - Nice piano. Upon retrospect I'm not sure I heard this one before I voted. This definitely would have gotten a vote from me if it had. Your vocals are a bit thin, but the recording retains your voice's vulnerable character. I think your string patch is a little cheesey, but the fundamentals are very strong here. Great job!

Petrified Computer - Love the band name. Straight up folk singin'! This actually reminds me of something from early in Willie Nelson's career. Your lyrics are a bit on-the-nose for my taste (the second-to-last verse especially sounds like you're trying a little too hard to pull on some heartstrings), but the performance is flawless. I especially like the mandolin that shows up right before the banjo solo. Man, your singing voice is perfect for this genre. Keep submitting, please!

Chocolate Chips - The cleanliness of your recordings is both your greatest strength and your biggest liability. Your audio fidelity is always flawless and you put out these perfect little synth-pop tunes, but then every once in a while, you submit a song like this one - I think is perfectly fine, but I think it would have been better served if someone else had done it. I think the whole robot-in-a-clean-room sound you do so well doesn't adequately capture the emotion behind these lyrics. I'd love to hear Jefff (Add) covering this song. He's excellent at nailing down those passionate performances and making the rest of the song sound tight, but just a little ragged. Anyway, I don't mind this version. It just sounds like it's got a lot of unrealized potential.

Cody Walker - It's amazing what some handclaps can do to cement down a groove. I kind of wanted to hear some stomping on the 1s and 3s, too (or even, dare I say, someone pounding on a suitcase). The instruments are all well-played. Instrumentals are a tough sell here at Song Fight, since without lyrics it can be difficult to convince us that this was in fact inspired by the title. Thanks for keeping it short and not outstaying your welcome.

Anastasia - Nice vocals, nice harmonies. I'd love to hear what you could do with a better microphone. I'm not crazy about the lyrics, and your guitar is a little out of pocket. Pleasant enough to listen to, though. Keep working at it! Also, hey Holly Furlone, if you're reading reviews of other people's songs, these are the kind of harmonies that I think would have worked really well in your song.
"Warren Zevon would be proud." -Reve Mosquito

Jon Eric - Get your feel on.
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Generic
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Re: Unpack your reviews (suitcase)

Post by Generic » Tue Jul 01, 2014 12:36 pm

I'd had a bit of a dry spell, not having recorded anything new in... well, close to a year, I think. On the week of the 16-20th, I was hard at work on my first two new recordings in a while. One was "Behind the Times" for Circle of Titles IV, which took up most of my week, and the other was this, "Suitcase," which started off as an idle idea, then very rapidly reached the point where I said "Okay, I better get this down." I'm afraid each project sapped some time from the other, but I'm glad I got both ideas down. "Suitcase" came together much much faster than "Behind the Times," so I thought of it as more of a "throwaway" song. Yet, when my brother heard it, and his first reaction was "Who did you get to play that guitar for you?" - I started to wonder if the easier song hadn't been the more worthwhile one. Anyway, thank you all for the reviews! Here are some reactions:
glennny wrote: Jon Eric- nice Tune
8-)
Pigfarmer Jr wrote: Jon Eric - That keyboard part is almost the piano version of the "house of the rising sun" riff. Which distracted me needlessly (it's not that close.) The shaker is a nice touch. I liked the tone of your vocal and felt it fit the song very nicely.
The first of many comparisons to "House of the Rising Sun." In retrospect, yes, I hear it too. But in the moment, this song was more about capturing a feeling and vibe. From initial idea to first draft was only about an hour. Thanks for reviewing!
JeffHenderson wrote: Jon Eric – I feel like this melody should be played on an accordion on a train in France. Nice piano chops.
True story: I pawned my accordion last year. A few weeks ago I called to see if I could buy it back from them, but it had been sold. I've got my eye on Craigslist. Thank you for the piano compliment!
Kevin Mellows wrote: Jon Eric
I immediately thought “House of the Rising Sun” even though this song is actually quite different. I find it kind of funny the way the bare word “suitcase” sort of just sticks out in the chorus. Yeah piano solo!
Excellent observation about the way the word sticks out. My thought process was the narrator noticing little damning details about his wife one at a time, and then being unable to stop fixating on the most telling detail of all. Thanks for the review!
Heine wrote: Jon Eric
Six-eight meter. I love that. The chord progression seems to live next door to that House of the rising sun. But that's o.k. The Honky Tonk piano fits very well. Got it's own cool atmosphere.
It wasn't initially written in 6/8 - I tracked it as 4/4 (at a punishingly slow tempo of 71 BPM), but my hands kept doing the triple-time thing, so I ran with it. Thank you!
Paco Del Stinko wrote: Jon Eric Burdon Minus The Animals- Nice melancholy feel here, not the often spritley jaunt that you tackle, I dig it. Guitaring sounds fine, by the way. There are a couple of times that I want to hear your voice soar during the verses, but that is probably a fault of mine. It's nice to be left wanting soemtimes. A very good song, thank you.
I haven't been doing the "spritely jaunt" thing much lately - divorce'll do that to ya. Thank you for the compliments on the guitar! This is the first time I've used guitar in a recording since fall of 2012. Perhaps you heard the story of my kitchen accident? Anyway, my hand/finger seems to be healing more or less on pace, and this song would most definitely have not worked on piano alone, so I went for it. It hurt like sin, but the results were effective, so I did an even more guitar-y song for "The Lurker." Can't wait to hear what you think about that!
codywalkerjr wrote: Jon EricReminds me of house of the Rising Sun a bit.. I think this song is lacking some texture. The guitar and keys playing the same chords, gets a little bit repetitive.. But cool tune though..
The phrasing on this review seems to imply you think it would be more interesting if the piano were playing different chords from the guitar... am I understanding that right? Definitely not something that ever occurred to me. How would you suggest arranging the piece so that the chords don't clash or create unpleasant cacophony?
chocolatechips wrote: Jon Eric - Has a bit of a Beatles White Album feel to it which is a big positive for me as a bit of a Beatles freak. I'm a big fan of the backing vocals (which remind me a bit of "Junk" by Paul McCartney) ... sounds maybe almost too loose at times (the guitar parts) but overall I quite like it. :mrgreen: VOTE.
I used to hate McCartney. I thought he was too pedestrian, too treacly, didn't know what he was doing without Lennon to bounce his ideas off of. I've recently (well, I guess 2011 isn't really "recent" anymore, but you get the idea) come to terms with the fact that Paul brought a lot more to the Beatles' table than I gave him credit for, and there's a lot of his craft in my songwriter DNA. I still think his lyrics work better when he has a strong collaborator, but his melodies, chords, structures, and prosody are all pretty much peerless. This review is high praise indeed! I wasn't overtly thinking of The Beatles or The White Album when I wrote and recorded this song, but I can hear what you're getting at. I really appreciate the thoughts, so thank you for the review and the vote!
Toby Roktot wrote: ps sorry jon..
Already forgotten. Literally. I actually don't even know what you're apologizing for, so it must not have been that bad.
"Warren Zevon would be proud." -Reve Mosquito

Jon Eric - Get your feel on.
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Re: Unpack your reviews (suitcase)

Post by Toby Roktot » Tue Jul 01, 2014 1:05 pm

gen and cc....
you're right, song had potential but, that's about it......
time to take a break. i have a show coming up, so i'll just 'lurk' for awhile.
thx to all for the info
sincerely,
toby
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Re: Unpack your reviews (suitcase)

Post by Toby Roktot » Tue Jul 01, 2014 1:07 pm

ps: no, not the dc fight thing. i will not be attending, thx and have fun !!!!
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Re: Unpack your reviews (suitcase)

Post by Paco Del Stinko » Tue Jul 01, 2014 1:46 pm

Hey Toby! Would you consider popping in over at the introductions page and offering up a little info on who you are and where you come from and all that? I'd be interested.
Bringin' the stink since 2006.
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Re: Unpack your reviews (suitcase)

Post by Holly Furlone » Wed Jul 02, 2014 5:13 am

[quote="Generic"



Holly Furlone - Did you separate the guitar and vocal into separate takes for this song? The vocal doesn't have the immediacy of that other song I voted for some time ago. If you're doing multitracking now, I suggest adding some harmonies, they can build and maintain interest in that long section near the end where you repeat the same line about 24 times.

Hey John, thanks for the review. Yeah, I did separate the guitar and vocals on this one. I tried taking them at the same time and in hindsight probably should have kept them combined (if for nothing else, the timing). I have since gone back and thrown in a couple of harmony tracks which do sound pretty cool. I think there's some potential here and plan on trying to fatten it up a little more. Thanks for the suggestions!
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Re: Unpack your reviews (suitcase)

Post by chocolatechips » Wed Jul 02, 2014 7:19 am

congrats to Holly & Thank Glennny ... and to me ! tied with Paco for 4th place? I'm pretty happy with that showing. Maybe I can actually win one of these things one day. Next time I'm going not going to wait until the last day and it'll probably turn out worse for the extra work.

also much props to Spud for keeping Darrick's vote flooding out of the results, that shit is annoying as hell. if they actually listen to every song and then vote, that's one thing - but I guarantee you these guys just voted for Darrick's song and one other one randomly without even listening.
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Re: Unpack your reviews (suitcase)

Post by darricklucas » Wed Jul 02, 2014 7:44 am

chocolatechips wrote:congrats to Holly & Thank Glennny ... and to me ! tied with Paco for 4th place? I'm pretty happy with that showing. Maybe I can actually win one of these things one day. Next time I'm going not going to wait until the last day and it'll probably turn out worse for the extra work.

also much props to Spud for keeping Darrick's vote flooding out of the results, that shit is annoying as hell. if they actually listen to every song and then vote, that's one thing - but I guarantee you these guys just voted for Darrick's song and one other one randomly without even listening.

Maybe they tried and just couldn't do it
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Re: Unpack your reviews (suitcase)

Post by chocolatechips » Wed Jul 02, 2014 7:47 am

you're a smug idiot. your songs are boring as hell. no amount of pristine recordings and fancy arrangements are going to make up for that. write a good song and maybe you'll win a songfight without cheating.
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Re: Unpack your reviews (suitcase)

Post by darricklucas » Wed Jul 02, 2014 7:54 am

Pretty sure I deleted that
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