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Dream Kingdom Trilogy E!09 Dream Kingdom Trilogy E!09

Rated 3.5 / 5 stars

alrighty then.

Definitely mastered too heavily. At first anyway. The second section has much more headroom and is nicer to listen to but the vocals in the third seem to suck all the headroom right out of the mix again.

The percussion feels awfully thin, the kick and snare are especially weak and GM sounding and fall well below the volume of the string sections and vocals when the attack should be well above them. There's no stereo imaging either so they feel even more flat and inhuman.

It sounds and feels like you've taken three different audio files and crossfaded them instead of taking the three pieces and creating thoughtful transitions. Compositionally the three are good and they're thematically similar but they need something more to tie them together. In fact if you got these three audio files which were already mastered and then put them together and mastered them all over again that would make for a pretty bad lack of headroom.

As three seperate tracks the composition and arrangement in each is fairly good. The way you've attempted to turn them into one track isn't working for me and there's a lot of things I don't like about the mix in general, some of which might just come down to a difference in how we work.

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Emuzin responds:

Isn't it great what an old-fashioned tape-recorder and aux cord direct to the computer audio import can achieve.

HeaXaM0rph HeaXaM0rph

Rated 4 / 5 stars

*bops head*

I like this overall. It has a very stiff 1-2 feel of mid 90s dance music along some trippy atonal synth you'd expect from new school electro house.

Really needs a stronger backbeat, that tiny little clap doesn't cut it past the 8th bar so I guess you should throw down a crunchy, filtered noise or something on the 2 and 4 once that choked synth comes in at 0m14s

I think the sidechained whitenoise sweep is a bit loud. maybe a bit of lowpass sweep on it would smooth it out a little and give it a bit more depth.

I'm thinking at 1m37s you could drop the beat and everything else completely and suddenly introduce a 2 bar shrill lead with a good portion of reverb and delay, with the 2nd bar silent for now (to give the effects room to ring out). Build the track back up, then when the beat comes back in you can throw both bars of lead down with much less reverb and delay (still a little bit though). Maybe layer a lower octave with less harsh tones as well.

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Mans0n responds:

haha thanks for the advice, ill look into some of this, but for now i gotta go so peace, and if ya got anything you want reviewed leave me a msg.

which bass line should i use? which bass line should i use?

Rated 3.5 / 5 stars

number two

second but on a more gritty sounding synth. maybe double it up with a clone of the same synth and automate some squelchy high pass filtering.

actually it really depends on what sort of track you want to build from this. you could create entirely different songs from either so i guess it's up to you depending on the direction you want to take.

HOT Fiery Anger HOT Fiery Anger

Rated 4 / 5 stars


the snare is a bit ugly sounding. maybe use a sample of a shallower snare with less gated reverb?

otherwise it's pretty bitchin'

woulda liked to hear more squeals and wailing solo action. ohhhhh well.

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Solus- Sunset Solus- Sunset

Rated 4.5 / 5 stars

awwwww isn't that nice

needs a lot more of those dynamic and timing offsets i keep telling people to put in...

but then the pads come in and it doesn't seem as inhuman for some reason. the chord progression is just darling.

still... the intro seems really stiff. even the sustain pedal keeps releasing at the exact same time each bar, haha.

really nice composition and arrangement. simplicity is the bomb.

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SolusLunes responds:

I really need to get back into tweaking each individual note...

AD - Pure Energy AD - Pure Energy

Rated 4.5 / 5 stars


The sort of breakbeat based industrial I try to make, except this is a lot less orchestral and more atonal broodey stuff...

The excessive bitcrushing gives this a bit of generic "hey guys i'm using a bitcrusher" feel. Okay, that doesn't really make a lot of sense but if you're using ephonic lo-fi you could try pitchshifting and dirty-ing the signal after the crushing to make it sound a bit more unique in the tonality. Or just keep it straight crushed at the start and then do stuff to it when it gets used afterwards...

A little hypocritical of me seeing as I love me some generic daft punk style bitcrushed synth basses.

I love the power in the beat. The deep kicks are great, sounds like you have some peak based synth layered under them making them nice and gritty too. I dig this.

P.S. The people being all "oh my god it's industrial not hip hop" probably haven't heard Saul Williams, awesome rapper with dirty industrial beats produced by flippin' Trent Reznor of all people. Reznor's collaborated with flippin' Dr Dre too guys, it's not a sin to make "industrial hip hop". Open your ears a bit.

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AeraDynamic responds:

Finally someone who understands me :333 I heart you, thanks for the bitcrushing advice, I'll give it a try next time I am doing this sort of HipHop / Industrial Sound. I know what you mean with its getting generic... I have to get some new Ideas for using bitcrushing and EQing it. And thank you for telling me about Reznor, I got to check that out asap :O

Bloodline Bloodline

Rated 4.5 / 5 stars

lovely :)

Not much to add. My thoughts have already been expressed :)

I think if you were to add vocals it'd be difficult to do since all you have is the wav file (hopefully unmastered) to track on top of. It might be easier to not bother.

In any case, thanks for sharing this with us! :D

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I'm Gonna Kill Santa Claus I'm Gonna Kill Santa Claus

Rated 4.5 / 5 stars

very slick

This is dying for a lead guitar lick somewhere and a real drummer!

I thought the vocals were definitely the best part. Very nice early Blink/general early 90's punk tone. Love the harmonies, the timing could've been tighter on the double tracking but you still did really well.

Good stuff, good job on AP #1 :)

giftedbuttwisted responds:


The Nintendo Concerto (Part 1) The Nintendo Concerto (Part 1)

Rated 2.5 / 5 stars

very meh.

Honestly it sounds like you slapped the scores from some MIDI files together and changed all the instruments to piano. It's definitely not been arranged properly for piano, some parts are flat out impossible to play on one piano in one performance. Maybe you transcribed this stuff yourself but it doesn't really sound like you did.

The song list is well thought out, I'll give you that much.

darphfluffy responds:

this was just the beginning. this is how i learned

&amp;lt;Zanarkand&amp;gt; <Zanarkand>

Rated 2.5 / 5 stars

So... what's new?

It sounds as though you just added some spatial effects to a midi file you found on the internet and sped it up a bit. It's been done. To be fair, I think you have something going with the omitted right hand in the beginning. Having said that, it could only ever reach its potential in an original arrangement. On the GM piano it sounds so dull and lifeless. The reverb doesn't really do much for me (too wet imo). You should definitely automate sustain controls and maybe tempo fluctuations. Also try to offset the timing of some notes by a very small amount to make it sound more natural, espescially in chords.

After about 1m30s I don't really feel like I need to listen to it any further because I know already how it's going to pan out. If you do more VG tune covers in the future (and I think you should to get more practice) you should arrange them differently to give them your own personal touch and to keep the listener on their toes.

Keep it up.

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Champius responds:


thanks for your in depth review its appreciated!

and yes the omitted left hand i thought would fit better than the intro that the other 100 versions of this start with,

i see what you mean by dull and lifeless but, i sort of wanted that feel.......i tried making the song itself be as if it were background music in a temple in the game.....if you know what i mean....

i did also add quite a few of my own touches to the song, many of them after 1:30

as for everything else, i'd say that's more of a preference issue....


thanks for the review : ]