Help me, Clarence, please... (Get Me Back Reviews)

Discuss upcoming, current, and previous song fights.
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Albatross
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Help me, Clarence, please... (Get Me Back Reviews)

Post by Albatross »

I wanna live again...
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Post by j$ »

Let me lead the way ....

Bewells - Pretty. Wish it was slightly less twangy in the music - that's a bit 'country cliche' - oh no, I don't like the 'Champion the Wonder Horse' theme tune section at all. Voice is nice though. Maybe if the mix wasn't so great, it wouldn't all sound so over-produced to within an inch of its life?? I'd like to hear it let loose, oh I dunno ....

Ryan Allen, Corkscrew King - Shame about the drums - nice voice, good creepy lo-fi mix, but the distorted drums (I'm hearing a deliberate choice here) are too uninteresting to dominate the left and right pan like that. I like your fragile voice a lot. Start thinking at 1.22 is there going to be any variation to those 3 chords? Hope so. Interesting, mind.

me is me.

Loyalty Day - great opening. Nice slightly jazz progression. I like Erin's voice a lot (it is Erin isn't it?) but I really want to hear a gravelly male voice on this particular song. nevertheless a very good song.

Luke Henley - Oh this is quite mainstream for you, Luke, and I like it! Some interesting chords in there, the 'nonsense' lyric (apart from the slightly self-referential references 'open mic etc) and I love the ooh-ooh-oohs. This feels like the hidden last track on a punk metal album. Glock solo? jack shite will sue.

Robohonkey - Ha, that's cool. Not sure about the hard panning of the various instruments - it feels like vocals and synth bass left, everything else far right. Cute song though. A lot better than your name suggested it was going to be. I like the buried guitar solo at 1.00 very much. The mix is letting down the funkiness of this a lot, but a nice master would take care of that. Kinda made your point by two minutes though....

Ryan Hardigan - production is much better this week. Cute little tune. But I don't vote for instrumentals, especially ones that don't seem to have anything to do with the title. I'd be curious to know your influences, because this isn't groovy or tight enough for the techno that the rhythym suggests or weird enough for the more electronica side brought by the melody. Between two stools?

Stubby Phillips - Oh that opening is almost Pink Floyd! Then progresses to almost slow Bon Jovi territory. What do they call it - country rock? rock country? Anyway, I was hoping for more Pink Floyd. I don't like the mawkish sentimentality of the lyric. Nostalgia for a time that never existed? Or maybe I'm pissing the point. Love the guitar at 02:15ish. That's crying out for becoming the backing to a heavy crunk rap track. If I were to advocate sampling that is.

have no idea who I am voting for. Good fight.
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Post by nyjm »

and france lags slightly behind london, but all you folks on the other side of the pond are still at work right now. haha. ;-)

the bewells
- pretty guitar; nice change-up aourd 0:50.
- i really like the slide guitar; i have to learn to play like that
- man, you make me jealous...

corkscrew king
- is the fuzzy percussion on purpose? it's kind of grating, but an interesting aural choice for flavor... but it doesn't go away, erg.
- there's a lot of white noise, which doesn't seem intentional; this whole mix needs to be cleaned up
- people tell me this all the time, but this needs a bridge or a breakout chorus or something for a change of pace

johnny cashpoint
- good groove
- and just when i was thinking, "this needs a guitar solo," there it is!
- unfortunately, that's all there is. more j$! more j$! more j$!

loyalty day
- i'm a sucker for any female vox, but you genuinely have a very nice voice; good harmonies
- ... which all seems just a tad over-powered by the rest of the mix; don't be afraid, bring that voice out and center!
- the rest of the music is otherwise just right to frame the voice, a proper mix of overdriven guitars and a laid-back groove
- very good, but might be great with a little more oomph or a bridge, just a little spice to an already-great tasting broth

luke henley
- yay! a luke henley song i like! here's what i like:
- simplicity and clarity, but structure
- the xylophone! (or glock, or whatever it is...) great touch
- good vocal harmonies

robohonkey/gavriel de tarr
- i don't think the hard-panning works too well for the mix
- everything seems distant, like i'm listening to this song through a door
- good ending

ryan hardigan
- reminds me of the music from old super nintendo games; ah, the good old days of playing zelda and contra...
- good change-up with the bass around 1:00
- the drums are simple but appropriate
- less of a "theme and variation" than "play this idea on several different instruments for three minutes"; for me, good instrumentals are either going to paint a very interesting aural picture (this is more like connect the dots) or tell me an interesting story (no story here); see Father Bingo's and Pegor's instrumentals for ellis island for what i'm talking about

stubby phillips
- great blues, solid bass groove and a smoking guitar line; great solo!
- your vox are very appropriate: clear but just a little gravely
- unfortunately, it just kind of ends...
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Post by j$ »

nyjm wrote: more j$! more j$! more j$!..
Heh. careful what you wish for. My song this week is slowly growing and growing into a prog-funk thing of much size and length.
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Post by blue »

i've been listening to this fight all day at work.. some good stuff, some meh stuff. (surprise)

bewells - your guitar and vocal have a lot of whuff in them. i think you'd be pleasantly surprised at what EQing some bass out would do for your mix. other than that, i have no opinion of your cover of Ghost Riders in the Sky.

corkscrewing - the digistortion drums were a turn-off on the first listen, but this song has really grown on me. i'm a sucker for the slightly detuned coffeecan guitar sound and plucky playing. the vocal is believable in its whispery earnestness. well-done tune. wish it ended in a wall of rock. paste a jute gyte song onto the end of the mp3.

j$ - i liked the guitar tone on the solo, but the rest of the song came across as a genre exercise.

LDAY - love the noises and weebles in the background. Erin's vox sound really good. song's a little too slow to capture my particular interest.

noah - well, you have an OK singing voice and are presenting some kinda VU tribute here, but all-in-all it was definately the kind of tune that gets buried very quickly on songfight.

ROBOHONKEY - the first verse didn't help your cause at all, but the chorus is oddly compelling. the overall sound of the mix is very, very muffly, which is really weird since you've gotta be using canned noises for the synths and drums. where is all the treble in this mix?

ryan hardigan - throwaway bullshit. this kind of stuff is a complete waste of time for everyone involved, please stop posting it.

stubby - i'm guessing that you played a drum machine by hand, or you have a digikit, because the drums.. well.. everything.. is off, timewise. at its very best you might have had an OK genre example, but as it is.. well.. you've failed at recording a simple 12 bar blues song. me personally, i'd feel pretty bad about that.
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Post by Märk »

Haven't reviewed (or listened) in ages, so here goes:

The Bewells: This reminds me of Solitude by Black Sabbath, sort of. Nice song, I guess, but never grabbed me, and not something I'd listen to again.

Ryan Allen: What's that wsshh wshhhws wshhh going on in the mix? Oh, I see, the drums are clipping or something. This seems to repeat itself too much. I'm waiting for a huge breakout part, and it never comes.

J$: Oh man. Pumping basslines. trebley guitar lines. This is trying to be punk rock, but ends up being 80's pop ;) Most enjoyable song so far this fight. Good job.

Loyalty Day: Excellent songwriting. The drums seem a bit too pervasive for the general vibe of the song, I'd have been a bit more restrained. Nice vocals, as always. This totally reminded me of your cover of Erik's 'Secrets' Good job.

Luke Henley: See, the thing that's wrong with this song is it sounds like someone set up a mic about 20 yards away, plugged directly into a sound card, then you played a cheap acoustic and sung. Then that zwing-ey thing comes in, way louder than everything else, and I don't like anything about the way this was recorded. There could be a great song in here, and I think there might be, but I can't hear it enough to tell...

Gavriel de Tarr: Okay, I'll be nice. This is pretty good. It sure sounded like Beck at first though.

Ryan Hardigan: I like the bassline. This has a certain groove to it. Needs a guitar, and vocals, and better drums, and a song.

Stubby Phillips: Since I been Loving You... I'maboutalose... lose my worried mind. Oh, wait. Okay, it's not nearly as good as that song. Nice guitar playing. The vocals sound a bit uninspired. Lyrics are okay. I usualy don't like blues jam songs which are actually just an excuse to play guitar solos while totally ignoring the need for good singing. This isn't an exception. Sorry.

Ehhh, if I were going to vote, I'd probably vote for Ca$hpoint or Loyalty Day. I know! I'll just vote twice!
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Post by jimtyrrell »

Reviews from insomnia.

Bewells - I like this. It's 4am or so here, and this fits the mood of the morning. The time change was a little confusing at first; percussion probably would have made it smoother. A small nitpick for an otherwise good tune. Oh, actually, when it drops back into the 3/4 it's much easier to follow. Thought it was going to end at 2:50. I'd like to hear this one with female vox, an octave up.

Corkscrewking - Neat drums. I keep expecting the intensity of the other instruments to come up to meet them, though. Like, where's the chunking dirty electric guitar and stuff? I do like the idea behind this one. Would like to hear it evolve or change up somewhere in there.

Johnnycashpoint - I'm digging this. You gotta cross the pond so I can hear this live in Boston. Love that dentist drill solo. Not much to say here, other than I'm sure I'll be listening to this one again.

Loyaltyday - Far be it from me to be critical of anyone else's drum sounds (I can hear the sniggers of other SongFighters worldwide as I type this), but those cymbals are pretty distracting. That's the medicine; the rest is sugar. This is a really cool song. I wouldn't be surprised to hear it on my local college radio station. Nicely done.

Lukehenley - I was thinking that this was one of those songs I'd hear someone do at an open mic that would lose my interest pretty quickly, but that second verse would have snapped my head around right quick. Funny ending.

Robohonkey - These lyrics make me wish I'd written them. Took me a minute to accustom myself to the sound of this one, but it's got me won over. Outstanding.

Ryanhardigan - Sounds like Trio stayed up all night listening to Gary Numan. Nothing wrong with that; Hell, I wish I'd been there. But around 1:30 I've got this sneaking suspicion that there's no words to this one. Yeah, this was okay for what it was, although the last minute or so was pretty unnecessary.

Stubbyphillips - Nice guitar bit at 2:09. A welcome change-up. The song seems to go on a bit long.

There you have it. A few vote contenders here, and a decent fight overall. I really should review more often; I seem to enjoy most of what I hear.
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Post by j$ »

Svën Müllët wrote:This is trying to be punk rock, but ends up being 80's pop ;)
Do you have any particular '80s pop star in mind there, Sven? :)

j$
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Post by Märk »

j$ wrote: Do you have any particular '80s pop star in mind there, Sven? :)

j$
No, not really. I immediately thought of like Adam Ant or something from back in the day ;)
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Post by bwell »

Some review comments...

The BeWells - This is mine. It ended up a bit more western than I had originally planned, but gave me a chance to try some new things (see next post).

Corkscrew King - I like the simplicity of this song and the approach. The quiet vocals and the guitar work nicely. The distorted drums were a bit distracting for me. If those were turned down a bit or had some other variation--and there was less background recording noise--this would be rather enjoyable on repeat listens.

Johnny Cashpoint - This is a fun song. I love the way it kicks off right into the vocal. Great background vocals to accent the sound. The lyrics are a good fit for this (even if they don't particularly mean anything). The only thing that stands out that I don't like as much is the guitar effect used in the instrumental section...a little overdone but kind of fits the style alright.

Loyalty Day - I love this song. The opening cymbals might be a touch too much, but I do like the idea and it segues nicely into the song. The vocals (great harmonies) won me over right away with a light, laidback pop touch reminiscent of The Cardigans (similarly enjoyed The Jig Is Up). The instrumental work complements the vocals and song style well...great guitar tones and production. The excellent job on this one all around makes it one of my favorites of the year thus far.

Luke Henley - I'm liking this more than some past efforts. Despite the production quality, there are some good things going on with the melody, lyrics, and guitar. The xylophone is a particularly nice touch.

Robohonkey - I generally like this song, but nothing grabs me. The tune works well for this style and there are good lyrics...great chorus. There is a bit too much of a distorted effect in general throughout the song that I find distracting. The mix also sounds a bit soft or muted and could use a bit more life to really jump out. Otherwise, this is a good song that could clean up well.

Ryan Hardigan - Being an instrumental piece, it needs to transcend that simplistic synth/MIDI feel to give it more substance. This could be a decent start for something, but it needs to be developed further to be interesting.

Stubby Phillips - This song has some nice instrumental touches. I like the guitar tone especially...with some nice playing. The lyrics seems to stretch at times, most notably (and it might be the delivery) on the "bloody" line. The drums sound better in the spots where there's more than only kick and snare. Things could generally be tightened up to make this a better track, but that guitar playing keeps me interested.
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Post by bwell »

blue wrote:your guitar and vocal have a lot of whuff in them. i think you'd be pleasantly surprised at what EQing some bass out would do for your mix.
My original mix of the song was done quickly (10-20 minutes) to hit the deadline. I did attempt remixing the song this week to get rid of some of the low end and generally tweak the eq and add more separation to the individual tracks. The updated mix can be found here if anyone wants to give it a listen...
http://www.thebewells.com/songs/bewells_gmb_remix.mp3

For anyone curious about the Variax, all of the instruments on this were done with a Variax (early 500 model with latest 3.0 firmware...I have had it since the first month they were released but this is its first appearance in a songfight entry). I stuck with the acoustic models this time around using the dreadnought acoustic, banjo, dobro, and parlor guitar (tuned down one octave for bass with the Workbench software) models.
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Post by j$ »

bwell wrote: The lyrics are a good fit for this (even if they don't particularly mean anything.
I'm pretty sure they mean something, but I have no idea what, as yet. That's automatic writing for you - pesky sub-conscious and all :)

j$
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Post by Lunkhead »

The BeWells
The singing style is a little cheesy for me, though I guess it fits the style of the song. I like the transition to the faster tempo. The guitar playing is good. The acoustic guitar sounds like it's plugged in, when probably a stereo mic'd acoustic would sound better. Knowing it's a Variax, though, I guess that's not really possible. Maybe a different preamp or something would give it a fuller sound. Anyway, well written and performed song.

Erin's comments: Very "Cold Mountain" soundtrack. Could have used some more variation in the instrumentation.

Corkscrew King
I like how this starts a lot, but then it stays kinda the same the whole song, instrumentation-wise. I really wish it would instead pause for a moment, or break down to just the vocals, then switch into a big loud part with crunchy guitars and rockin' drums. This definitely shows some good potential though.

Erin's comments: Catchy/cute tune. Liked the guitar, but I wished that the vocals were more varied. Reminded me of being in a "Peanuts" cartoon.

J$
Your vocal style really really fits the musical style of this song, and you should definitely explore this genre some more, as I think it works great for you here. Very catchy and fun. I like the backup vocals a lot. The solo guitar sound is not working for me but that's a minor nitpick. Then it just ends, which is too bad, I could have listened to another verse and chorus.

Erin's comments: Not crazy about the backup vocals, but really liked the chorus melody. This genre seems to be really working for you. Thanks for the post-punk flashback.

Luke Henley
This is kinda quiet, and the guitar sounds a bit out of tune. (Sorry if I'm beating a dead horse there...). I like the singing style alright, and the guitar playing is OK. I like the toy piano. Decent song.

Erin's comments: Reminds me of Nick Drake. Toy pianos always get me.

Robohonkey
I love the chorus. I like the "ridiculously wealthy" and "premium and girls" lines. The instrumental bit after the first chorus is maybe a bit too long, though since it sort of takes the place of a verse I guess it has to be long. Maybe breaking things up a bit with a part where the drums cut out earlier than the outro or something would be cool. (I was so distracted by the awesome chorus that I didn't even think about what the song had to do with the title!)

Erin's comments: Fantastic chorus. Your name fits this song well. Not sure how this ties in with the title, though.

Ryan Hardigan
Nice ocarina of time. This is kind of annoying... Sorry, I don't need anymore 8-bit video game music.

Erin's comments: You are Montezuma's Revenge plus Dig Dug. Or not...

Stubby Phillips
The timing is kinda bad in the intro. You really need to add a hi-hat and/or ride cymbal to your fake drums. Just using kick and snare is completely fake sounding because drummers almost never do that for an actual "beat" in a song. Kinda rambling and not that exciting to me.

Erin's comments: No comment.

I think my favorite is Robohonkey's, though unless he explains the title connection I'm probably going to vote for J$.
Last edited by Lunkhead on Mon May 16, 2005 8:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by ken »

OMG, you guys are 2 cute for the internet!

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Post by HeuristicsInc »

luke - the guitar's too quiet. the bells are kinda cool. i can see the virtue in this, but the mixing definitely needs work. also, work on setting the lyrics in time with the beats.

stubby - hey, great lead guitar. vocals aren't quite as good, but fit ok. that lead guitar is definitely the shining star here. might want to redo the vox and this song would be awesome.

j$ - yeah, we know you right away. this is kind of a new sound, isn't it? weird and fantastic. great guitar fx on the solo.

ryan h - kind of kraftwerk-esque on that arpeggio. this is fun, but i'm not getting a title connection from this. yes, i like it, but i won't vote for it without a better title connection.

loyalty day - yeah, great! great great. great. this would be an excellent song to remix.

bewells - nice. folk/cowboy feel is neat. reminds me of something. the ending is very good.

ryan a - think this one feels a but too repetitive. interesting groove, though. what's the deal with 020905? looks like a date. and not one that's legal for this fight.

gavriel - hard to hear. doesn't really seem to gell that well. but i like the sound of it and the groove. this one definitely needs mastering to sound its best. whoa, where does the music go? didn't like that dropout. other than that the ending is very cool now that i turned the volume way up.

comment: several people here should look into mastering software. e.g. ryan a, gavriel, etc.

1: stubby, j$, ryan h, loyalty, bewells
2: luke, ryan a, gavriel

my vote is either for j$ or loyalty day.... gotta re-listen.
i think j$ might have taken it with a somewhat longer one, and i voted for him LAST TIME :)
yay loyalty day.
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Post by HeuristicsInc »

bwell wrote:I did attempt remixing the song this week to get rid of some of the low end and generally tweak the eq and add more separation to the individual tracks.
Yeah, I think the new mix is definitely an improvement over the old one.
Good work.
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Post by blue »

bwell wrote:
blue wrote:your guitar and vocal have a lot of whuff in them. i think you'd be pleasantly surprised at what EQing some bass out would do for your mix.
My original mix of the song was done quickly (10-20 minutes) to hit the deadline. I did attempt remixing the song this week to get rid of some of the low end and generally tweak the eq and add more separation to the individual tracks. The updated mix can be found here if anyone wants to give it a listen...
http://www.thebewells.com/songs/bewells_gmb_remix.mp3
hey, that sounds way better - i had no idea your song had a bass in it! it's still a liiiiittle funny sounding, but i can't quite my finger on what it is. it's like.. one of your guitar strings in the right speaker is ringing louder than the rest?
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Post by j$ »

HeuristicsInc. wrote: i think j$ might have taken it with a somewhat longer one, and i voted for him LAST TIME :)
yay loyalty day.
-bill
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Post by ken »

Quick Get Me Back reviews from the laptop.

bewells: Nice guitar playing. Nice voice. This song has a great old tyme feel to it. Some kind of murder ballad or something. Well done.

Corkscrew King: Interesting lo-fi vibe. I'm not so into the whispered vocals. Did you record them with headphones as your mic? I suspect there is a tight little pop song underneath it all. I would like to pick this song in a coverfight sometime.

Johnny Cashpoint: Bratty vocals aren't appealing to me. I like the idea of your solo section, but the lead guitar is biting and hard to listen to. Odd ending, but at least you kept it short. Felt like half a song.

Loyalty Day: Intro sounded way better on my monitors at home. I see how my laptop is not the best listening environment. Bass seems too low. I like this song a lot. Erin's vocals make it good.

Luke Henley: Your mp3 is too quiet. I think you have potential. It is just so hard to hear. Ouch, and then the glockenspiel come in really loud. What's going on?

Robohonkey: Noisy. Chaotic. Not sure I like this. It's a long three minute song. The vocals in the background sound all right, so I wonder if I wouldn't like this better with a more straight ahead arrangement.

Ryan Hardigan: Wow, this is casio-licious. Melody reminds me of something. One of the other songs? Did you quantize every note? It sounds a little stiff. My housemate just popped in and said it sounds like an 80s video game. I have to agree.
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Post by j$ »

ken wrote: Felt like half a song.
So play it twice.
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Post by HeuristicsInc »

No, *you* play it twice!
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Liner Notes
SF Lyric Ideas
john82
A New Player
Posts: 15
Joined: Wed Jan 23, 2008 7:21 am

Post by john82 »

this is the order of the songs, from best to worst, in my opinion:

Johnny Cashpoint
Corkscrew King
Robohonkey
Loyalty Day
The BeWells
Luke Henley
Stubby Phillips
Ryan Hardigan

Johnny from guitars101
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