They Control the Reviews (Weather)

Discuss upcoming, current, and previous song fights.
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They Control the Reviews (Weather)

Post by Spud »

You will write reviews now.
Last edited by Spud on Sat Feb 09, 2008 10:21 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Post by JonPorobil »

But there's no songs! How can I write reviews if the---

Yes, master.
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Control Problems

Post by The Weakest Suit »

Some tracks appear to be labeled incorrectly on the front page:
The Weakest Suit labeled as Those Meddling Kids
Those Meddling Kids labeled as The Howling Monkeys
Howling Monkeys labeled correctly, though

Also should Ambient Train Industry be Ambient Train Ambient Industry as it is in it's file name?

Also, the stream for They Control The Weather brings up the stream for Mobile Home House Party.
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Post by Spud »

Holy shit. What WAS in that orange juice this morning?
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Post by Spud »

OK. I have had my coffee now, and I believe that all of these problems have been fixed. There was some weird caching issue with the playlist even after I fixed it, but it seems to be working now.

SPUD
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Post by JonPorobil »

Is Deep Throat on vacation?
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Post by king_arthur »

If so, there are a bunch of good titles over in the "Make Own Album Art" thread :-)

However, I suspect we've just fallen into the Songfight Gap. It's part of the new zeitgeist. You'll never get used to it, but you will survive...

And in the meantime... how long have those "jump to last post in thread" icons been there? Yay, fightmasters!

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Post by Spud »

king_arthur wrote:how long have those "jump to last post in thread" icons been there?
Yeah, I never saw them before either, and it took me quite a while to find them even after you pointed them out. For those who haven't found it either, this should save you some time hunting to figure out what the King is talking about:

Image
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Post by The Weakest Suit »

Thanks for the fix.
On with the fight!
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Post by Spud »

A note to listeners and reviewers:

Pompeii has been added to the fight. Their entry was temporarily misplaced.

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Post by furrypedro »

When writing these reviews I thought about being lenient because of the fact we only had a couple of days to record, as that's how I would like people to listen to mine. But I wasn't.

Ben Krieger: Love it, spacey euphoric electro indie pop goodness all round. The vocal is so exuberant and the the solo reminds me of Daft Punk.

Melvin: Phew, you're back. Starting to get worried for a second there. This is good, but it's when you get to the bridge that this really kicks of and the electric guitars come screeching in. Short and sweet. A perfectly formed bombastic pop nugget, though I have to admit the melody doesn't get my pants all excited in the way Ben's song this week does.

Ambient Train: Nice and atmospheric sounding. Is that synth feedback? This sounds like it needs a whole guitar-y build up attached to it in a post-rock stylee. You've set a mood well but there's no real melodic element hear and it wouldn't have taken much to make this a lot more engaging.

Howling Monkeys: This is a really nice song, the lead guitar is beautiful and really subtley done. Vocals are an abvious strong point. Not sure about the outro but otherwise this is a definite keeper.

Ross: Nice guitar line. This is a pretty good song, I'm going to need to listen to it a few more times to let the words and stuff sink in properly but it's really nicelly done with the bongos and the electric guitar. That guitar definitely adds something without being intrusive or overbearing. This reminds me of Gomez.

My New Time Machine: This is Pavement-a-riffic. I like the guitar sound but sometimes it doesn't sound as if your sure what note your trying to hit. This doesn't seem to be going anywhere, I'm skipping forward, you're still singing that line, still. Write some more words.

Paco: This is pretty good but it's not pressing my buttons musically. That's the dude from klownhole isn't it. I prefer Paco's vocals. The rockingest thing I've heard so far.

Dynamic Riddim Device: This sounds like it would fit on a 50's Christmas compilation, mainly cos of the guitar sound. Nice Q&A bit. Harmless fun.

Pompeii: "Fergie, Hitler, Special K" nice lyrics. This sounds like you had an awesome time recording this. I wish when my friends recorded comedy songs they sounded more like this rather than people who can't really play or record pretending they're funny. This is pretty tight, obviously it's not a high budget production or nuffink but for what it is I can't find fault. and I had fun, and that's the main thing. I'm gonna file this next to 'Night Terrors' by Big Crouton. and now I'm going to listen to 'Night Terrors' by Big Crouton. bye!

k, I'm back. Who's next?

Lordy Lord: Ah, more electronesis. When I hear you start songs liek this I want you to turn into the Chap (see 'I Am Oozing Emotion') or better yet the Dismemberment Plan (check 'You Are Invited'), but I have a suspicion that this is pretty much going to continue as it started. This ain't bad, I quite like the bass line, and the beat has a persistent groove I can get into. the weird vocal thing is a bit off-putting, I really want this to have a badass funkadelic breakdown with some chunky guitars. I like the way it starts to build up near the end but then you break it down again and keep bringing all these bits in and out instead of building up to a climax, which I think would have been more effective.

Iron Canadians: Nae bad, nice chords, nice beats. Still feels like there's something missing though, and I'm not referring to the absence of sung vocals. The changes when the other instruments come in comes out of nowhere a bit, a smoother transition into that section might have helped. I like to have various different elements snaking around each other in soundscape type tracks. With this I think I can hear each individual element pretty clearly (as there's not that much going on at any one time) which is fine, but makes it feel more like a mellow jam than a soudscape, which is also fine if that's what you were going for.

Emberz of Ortum: This is pretty good, I like the way the guitar and piano counter each other though accasionally the piano gets a bit repetitive but it's not too bad. It's a bit of an emo schmaltzy melody but still a good song and well sung.

Weakest Soot: Here's a lesson I learned the hard way: If you can't reach a note, don't go for it. Either go low, or write a melody that fits your range. This is alright, I don't know that anybody is going to be blown away by the instrumentation and the lyrics aren't particularly deep.

King Arthur: Have you ever collaborated with Steve Durand? If not why not? You write in pretty similar styles and you are quite obviously hankering after his numerous talents. I also think he could use your, cos your voice is better than his and your lyrics and meter are one notch above his (sorry Steve!). Well, maybe his lyrics are as good as yours, but your delivery makes them sound better. Anyway, you should start a band cos he can do for real all the things you have synthesized here. As far as this song goes, it slinks along nicely and I get the feeling if I listen to it once more I'll be singing the chorus on my way to work tomorrow. Good work for 2 days.

Crapalot: I keep expecting this to kick in with up front vocals and a phat beat but we're about halfway through and it's not gone anywhere yet. A bit disappointing becuase as an intro to a nicely produced hip hop track this kicks ass. I love the smorgasboard of sounds, I might have to steal that guitar effect.

Flvxxvm Florvm: This is the kind of song Tom Petty needs to put on every one of his albums instead of another boring mid tempo piano ballad. Ha, I thought "I wonder if it's gonna change", checked the time and realised I was on my 3rd repetition. S'alright yeah, nice riffage.

PiGPEN: The things I like about this song include the melody, initially, the arrangement, the drums beats, the mix, and in a way, the lyrics. Things I don't like about it are the way that (although it took me a few listens to notice this) it just loops the same 2 sections three times and finishes, and also the limited sounds used. I like interesting song structures, and I guess it's not that important but a change would've been nice. Apart from the one section change which is cool, the song doesn't really develop much beyond that.

I like my song (duh) but I wish the chorus was better, it's a bit airy. Oh well.

Cool, I'd say there wasn't a shitter in the bunch. Good effort people. I wanna vote for Ben Krieger or Howling Monkeys, and I think I'll go for the latter in the name of Newbie-love.
Last edited by furrypedro on Fri Feb 01, 2008 11:07 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Post by PiGPEN »

I wanted to be in on this one but finished too late.
Here's mine if anyone cares.

I'll try to gay up another one for whatevers after boots.
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So far

Post by Saucalito »

I like Melvin's song alot. Weakest suit is decent this week. I'm sick of heavy/robot/ trying to be metal voices. There is a pretty good mix this week of good to better songs. I'll do a review eventually. I think I'm in for next week hopefully too.
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Post by drë »

Not to start gushing over one specific songfigher, but The Weakest Suit’s songwriting and vocals are getting better and better.. or maybe we’re in the same sate of mind. Either way, good stuff.
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Post by jeff robertson »

Those of us who are in both fights have a lot of reviewing to do!
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Post by Paco Del Stinko »

Yes we do, Jeff Robertson, yes we do.
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Post by Paco Del Stinko »

Ambient Train Ambient Industry - I have weird feelings about slowed down drum tracks, and this isn't helping to alleviate the queasiness. Cold, and good for a quick toss-off, I suppose. The atmosphere is effective for...something, including the drums.

Ben Krieger - Another futuristic visitation from a concept master. This jumps all over the place, but manages to hold onto itself. Love the vocals, but my favorite part is when the synth lead squirms in. This feels as though it is a piece from some other grand epic you have going on, and I was kind of surprised when it ended after the lead. Outer-space Who.

Dynamic Rhythm Device - I think that this is Glenn Campbell working with MC Eric B. I like the denial of the lead singer against the back-up voices until he finally relents at the end. Light and fun, the bridge is a nice change that gives the song a just needed breath.

Embers of Autumn - Tuning issues and perhaps chord voicings hurt the impact of this, unfortunately, but it's a nice emotional song that's mostly well delivered. This could be about the Heros TV show, but I don't watch it to know if it is. I like the cascading piano idea at the beginning best.

Flvxxvm Florvm - Great main riff/harmony, and I dig the driving rhythm. The change only makes the main riff sound better, and probably could've been anything there. Good idea, but way unfinished sounding.

Howling Monkeys - Beatles references are inevitable and appropriate here, but this song stands tallest in a fight with some good stuff in it. The melodies are nice over the almost medicated feel of the music underneath. Not to say the music is dopey or anything. All the pieces are well balanced, the supporting vocals are wonderful and while a lot goes on in a short time, the length is both satisfying and making you want to hear it again. Smells like a deserved winner to me.

Iron Kids of Canada - I like the atmosphere here, no pun intended, but the weather report voices are kind of a cop-out. I think they might've sounded good as an occasional supporting line. And what does it all have to do with control? Nice instrumentation, though.

King Arthur - Great take on the title, it took me a moment to catch up to where you were going to on first listen. The music is light and festive, but the manipulation by the unseen man-gods is really creepy. Right to the point structurally, with no fluff or un-needed frills, and the melodies are fine enough. But it's the story that works best here.

Lord of Oats - The monotone verse vocal starts to get on you, but it helps the chorus sound catchier than it is. The layers are simple and effective and there is an overall warmish feel to the song despite it being all synth sounds. I like the way it almost gets gark near the end, and that might've been an interesting turn to take. Seems kind of lacking in substance, which is one of my trademarks. How dare you!

Mc Crapalot - I like the music, and the vocal processing, but not together here. The music should have some kind of "yeah yeah, gonna hump your leg" stuff on it, and the voice should go over something more threatening. I like the swirly effect it has on you by the end, though. Good pieces that at times belonging to a different puzzle.

Melvin - It makes me want to cuddle with my high school sweetheart. If I was a lot younger, that is. I like the short length here and it helps bring about that don't want it to end feel that evokes the sweetheart feelings. The melodies are nice if not outstanding. The production is great though, and sounds both tight and organic, not all digitally digital but still nice and crispy. You're still the man, Melvin.

My New Time Machine - I think that I'd like this better after it grew up quite a bit. It sounds like you have ideas but don't know how to interpret them yet, or that your ideas are ahead of your skills. Keep at it and practice all of the elements of what makes your song: singing, playing, arranging, etc.

Paco Del Stinko - I scratched the original because I couldn't drum to it, so out comes the old cheapo crunch-fest. As mentiond in pre-fight, I thought the title was "Answer: They Control The Weather".

Pompeii - The ultra-metal is good and pounding, but I love that psycho key in the beginning. I was laughing at some of the listees, but loving the loopy siren bridge in a big way. Love the push/pull. The leads are rather anti-lead in a way, maybe just a couple of HUGE soaring notes would've been fun. The voices fit but this ends up being a near novelty song because of them.

Ross Durand - I like how at the start you're almost expecting the sound of distant thunder, but instead of a sample or whatever, you get an almost sizzling sound that tells a story behind the vocals. I'm not smart enough to tell if this means more than a spooky story or not, but works well as is. This is also an excellent recording, that acoustic sounds great and all is well balanced in the mix, with just what is needed and no more, telling a lot with a little.

Those Meddling Kids - Nice and heady, the looping guitar is almost Marr-ish, and I like how the song doesn't try to go everywhere at once while still engaging in little time skips here and there, as one might expect from your delightful little camp. The melodies aren't as strong as the music, I think, and sound a little too in the mix. I think a little more assertion on their part, w/o being aggressive, might've served them well.

The Weakest Suit - Train going by in the middle of the night feel, here. I like the main melody better after it passes through the tasty tremolo section(s). Dark and effective, I sit on the fence with the internet statement for some reason, but it could be as simple as hearing the word internet. I'm always good for a dose of paranoia though, and this seems to fit well in my, uh, prescription plan. (sorry) The dark, late at night feel is what works best for me overall.
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Post by melvin »

Ambient Brain Industry: Right out of the gate, it appears we have a non-song in this fight. I am not amused.

Ben Kegel: Ah! That’s so much better! Great melodies and vocals. Plus, I’ve been obsessed with moving to California lately, so this strikes a chord. The ending kind of left me hanging, but good track nonetheless.

DRD: Love the background vocals in this. They actually sound like they were transported from another era. But I don't like the talking bits, and there are some really strange timing problems. But there’s a certain old-timey charm to this overall.

Members of Autism: Nice piano in the intro, and the vocal delivery here is pleasingly uninhibited and emotive. Not a bad lil’ tune.

Flu Flux Flan: Like the riffage and the guitar sounds. Although not a lot of development is apparent in terms of songwriting.

The Growling Monkeys: Dang! This is very impressive. Beautiful performances and production. I wish my stuff sounded this warm. I find myself wanting a stronger melodic hook somewhere—the “they control the weather” melody doesn’t do much for me—but the monkeys still deserve respect. Great work.

Ironic Kids of Canada: Someone could probably have sung over this backing track and made something closer to what I would call a ‘song’. Weather forecasts without any time reference are not informative, and I have yet to hear a weather forecast that is aesthetically pleasing. So why?

Bling Arthur: You always sound like such a pro. I think someone else already said this, but S. Durand would have been an excellent collaborator for this track. Nonetheless, the horn parts sound well-placed, even if somewhat synthetic. Great vocal performance. Good track all around.

Fjord of Boats: I like the synthy cheese here—the tones, beats and chord progressions. Catchy chorus too. I guess it’s already apparent that we have similar tastes when it comes to putting tunes together. In many respects, this sounds like something I might do. Nice pop sensibilities. I also like the way the beats and synth parts and hi-hats come in and out of the mix, and the way it returns to the chorus at the right moments. Good work.

MC Crapinpants: Huh? I can’t understand anything that’s happening here.

Smellvin: This tune evolved out of an aborted attempt to cover the song Puppy Love. About the only aspect that survived (I think) was the 1950s American high school vibe.

My Spew Lime Machine: Eh, this sounds like a valiant effort by someone who is relatively new to playing and singing. So, A for effort, and keep it up.

Wacko Del Stinko: Killer tones right off the bat! Yes. This is the darker side of Paco that doesn’t always resonate as well with me as the poppier stuff. Still, great riffing and soloing that makes me wish I really knew how to play guitar. The production is also typically warm yet crystal-clear. This track is inspiring and rocking, as always.

Flambé: I remember being totally blown away by you guys many moons ago, and although this track once again showcases excellent musicianship and production (as well as grin-inducing lyrics), I’m not totally digging the tune—particularly, the falsetto vocal in the chorus, which grates a bit too much. Still there are several ass-kicking highlights, such as the wicked intro squeal, the wailing sound starting at 1:27, and of course the double kick action.

Boss Durand: This is gorgeous storytelling with a very lush and haunting sonic backdrop. I must say, I thought we were building up to a high-energy solo around 2:10, and felt a slight drop in the dynamic when it didn’t come. But that’s highly subjective nit-picking, because this is extremely well-crafted, and the little outro solo is very nicely executed.

Those Dreaded Kids: Right off, I am in love with this song. I love the guitar progression, the lyrics and the vocal performance. The lead bit at 1:15 is also just brilliantly executed. Overall, this track has the power to make me feel depressed, even though it’s a gorgeous day and life is beautiful. My only complaint is that the composition kind of falls apart somewhere around 2:45. It’s as if it’s trying to become more dense and urgent, but doesn’t really know where to go. I’d give you the advice a very talented songwriter gave me several years ago that, at first, offended me, but that I later came to recognize as one of the most useful pieces of advice I ever received: end the song sooner.

The Bleakest Suit: This is pretty funny! Nicely put together. The melody doesn’t really grab me, but it’s well conceived and performed, and a good piece of work.
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Post by furrypedro »

yay for reviews. I knew we could depend on two of our most valuable citizens for well informed opinions.
Paco Del Stinko wrote:I think a little more assertion on their part, w/o being aggressive

melvin wrote:end the song sooner
Point taken on both counts. That is elusive ground where my vocals sound both powerful and in tune, but I'll get there. And yes, shorter more direct songs - whenever I do that it tends to yield good results. I need to get over my obsession with unexpected twists.

Thanks chaperoos
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Post by madtho »

but what the hell do I know, I seem to have become a 50's novelty revivalist.

<b>Pompeii-</b> I wonder how much those 80's "Rockman" things go for. You could make a pretty sick rig with one of those and an Alesis SR-16. Your sounds are correct, but the voice, figure that out and you'll be floating in a pool, drinking whisky and shouting obscenities at your mother.

<b>Ambient Train Ambient Industry-</b> This would make a great track 4 on an otherwise indyrock album. Good sounds, <i>Just</i> long enough if not a hair too long.

<b>Iron Kids of Canada-</b> sweet. I wish it had remained a little more electro, but I still love it. Orange.

<b>Lord of Oats-</b> Wow, great work. You nailed this one. big surprise. There's a control of so many different things here (delivery-arrangement) that you don't usually have. very well done.

<b>Embers of Autumn-</b> I applaud you if you're playing that opening piano. Well done on the lyrics, very well done actually, but it's not something I'd listen to alot. It just might be the track that wins you an audience though. Good demo-style instrumentation

<b>King Arthur-</b> Superb Songwriting, great production. wow. horns. great horns, synth or not.

<b>The Weakest Suit-</b> I feel a good song in there, maybe a couple more days.

<b>Flvxxvm Florvm-</b> nice guitar hook, content + tone

<b>Those Meddling Kids-</b> Sounds like a pretty harmless song, but I think I'd like it more if it were a little more harmful. Maybe take it into Cure territory? sort of pitchy vocal, but I bet you could use that to your advantage somehow.

<b>Melvin-</b> I couldn't do this even if I read the book that you did. Everything exactly in its place.

<b>My New Time Machine-</b> See meddling kids above on all counts, but replace Cure with Velvet Underground/Built to Spill. I think one of the pitfalls of home recording is not being able to sing loud enough often enough to sing well, then effecting it too much. I think there is a good vocal hiding in there.

<b>Mc Crapalot-</b> Alot better than I was expecting, given your name. I like the sounds, I'd just like a whole second part to come in.

<b>Ben Kreiger-</b> Geez, it's electro-pop week at Songfight. I hear so many wonderful/horrible things: BeeGees-Olivia Newton John-Journey-Queen-A HA. I love it. admirably short, but ends to quickly, know what I mean?

<b>Ross Durand-</b> Have you heard of Greg Brown? I'm not directly comparing you, but there is a frequency, an edge in the way his voice is recorded that I think you'd be wise to capture. I like this vocal way better than the other style I've heard from you.

<b>Paco Del Stinko-</b> When I first heard of Iggy Pop in the 80's I wondered what the big deal was. Lame, tame. Then I heard Raw Power. I made a mix tape that had that song on it 6 times.
I'd recommend running your whole mix through a RAT pedal. Twice for the vocals.

<b>Howling Monkeys</b> nice mood, great harmony, good blend of drumachine/instruments. You really know what you're doing, don't you.

<b>Dynamic Rhythm Device-</b> This is me. I fought with Ableton Live to squeeze this out for the deadline (weird timing stuff), a more polished mix of this song at <strike>www.shoobedoobe.org</strike> in the interest of saving somesongs please listen there, then check my blog :wink:


Wasn't this 4 days? I commend you all. All the best entries had wonderful restraint this week.

-mad
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Post by Poor June »

i did reviews... i did a whole list... and just fucking lost it... anyhow i will be short and sweet

ben krieger: intro is kinda messy... i dont' know, how a state in and of itself is taking over the weather... maybe a member or members of california... however it's not bad... kinda sounds like 80's synth pop

dynamic: i like the lyrics... it reminds me of the late 50's and early 60's... the vocals are so so... not bad... not great... but not bad for sure...
all and all it's not bad... needs more to the music at some point... and it doesn't ever really come... that's the only thing that i don't like

flvxxvm: sounds like loop guitar... can't understand the words since the guitar kinda drowns them out... quite a lot... it's not really that great a loop in the first place... if it's not a loop i'm sorry... i'd just be very surprised if it wasn't... don't know if i could believe it haha...

kingauthor: very island vacation sound... sounds like something you'd hear by a swimming pool in a crowded area... haha... i like it all and all... not huge on horns in general... but i think it works this song out that way... and i like the lyrics quite a bit... not bad at all...
not huge on the style... but i still enjoy listenin' to it... so i'd say it's pretty damn good... i wouldn't mind hearing some kinda solos or somethin'... but i know not everyone enjoys that sort of stuff... good stuff...

lordofoats: very minimalistic, i really wished it kinda progressed a lil' quicker... i think it kinda drags for a lil' long... i do like how it goes towards the end... the outro is hot... really cool... all and all it just kind of drags about half the time... (liked the strings/violin that came in for a second)

melvin: what can i say... it would've won my vote if howling wasn't so well done... this is really really well done... and i like the sound... kinda reminds me of weezer
all and all i just enjoy the overall sound of it... maybe a solo and the music woulda beat the production of howling... but without solo... the production and flawlessness just has to win... deffinately a tough call

milo: the first time i heard this song... i didn't really like how it was just effects on weather talking... but... it just sounds so cool with the minimalism of the music... i can't help, but enjoy how it randomly just hits it... all and all i like how it is something that really wouldn't work one without the other... i like it even better the second time

mynewtimemachine: oh.. yea... don't really like the lyrics... need good lyrics to really pull off the slow pace... the repetitiveness... just makes the song drag...
all and all think with a few changes it could be alright... as it is though... i'm not big on it...

pompeii: i like how it almost has like an 80's feel... it kinda reminds me of tourniquet haha... don't know if you know 'em... but yea...
the solo is nice... i wished it woulda hit some higher rolls though... seems to never hit it's peak... i still enjoyed it... \m/

rossdurand: i like the music... vocals remind me kind of like a johnny cashish kinda thing goin' on... i like some of the riffing... woulda been nice to hear more... but it was cool to atleast hear some :-)
pretty good

thosemeddlingkids: i can't understand all the lyrics... but i'd like to read 'em... sounds like they are alright... just don't like the 'crooked smile' phrase... just heard it too much... the vocals i wished were a just a lil' clearer, and dig the lil' mandolin parts... all and all i think with just a little work... it could be a contender

theweakestsuit: i like the lyrics... i like the way the vocals are done... i just don't like how you say weather half the time... sometimes it sounds alright... but sometimes it sounds like webber...
all and all this is probably a close 3rd fave for me... just with miner adjustments... all and all i was disappointed at all... i enjoyed listenin' to it... woulda liked some more riffing possibly some kinda building sounds here and there... but all and all it's cool

pacodelstinko: love the bass, aintt really big on the vox though... i dig the back up vox though... kinda makes the others sound better... afterawhile... think the vox actually get better through the 2nd half of the song... this one out of all the rest of would've really been complete with a hot solo... \m/ the main thing it's missing

howlingmonkeys: i don't even know if i really need to say anything for this... it's done so well... and flawlessly almost... that i just can't help, but want to vote for it... it reminds me of like the beatles mixed with something i can't quite put my finger on... i just dig... i mean... if it doesn't win... i'd be shocked... haha...
impressive...

mine: ehhh need a pre-amp... the layered vox take all the umph out of the tracks... the bass and drums are turned up as loud as i could get 'em... and everything else was turned down... and still just overpower 'em like they aren't there...
i don't understand... any suggestions i would appreciate \m/

top 5..
howling monkeys
melvin
milo II
theweakestsuit
king author

but
howling gets the vote... just too nice...
all and all great fight... all the songs were pretty good... surprised me...
"You haven't been really bad in a long time." - jim of seattle

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furrypedro
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Post by furrypedro »

Poor June wrote:thosemeddlingkids: i can't understand all the lyrics... but i'd like to read 'em... dig the lil' mandolin parts...
lyrics are in the archive... and those are lil' ukelele parts.
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