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Your Story Your Story

Rated 5 / 5 stars

this speaks to me on so many levels

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TheBetterAudioPortal responds:

We can all be gay together.

Contemplation Contemplation

Rated 2.5 / 5 stars

i like how you layered those triplet arps over the drums, but it would've been nice to have a bit more swinging and swaying in the beat. with your mixing there's almost a kinda trap feel to it but the instrument selection is kinda indecisive, like the track doesn't really know what it wants to be (e.g. the big heavy kick against those kinda brushed sounding snares). there's also not really a whole lot of development, and even though the change in the middle is nice it's kinda awkward. the fade into the filtered piano and the subsequent reverb increase is a really nice touch, but takes way too long imo

gamefiend64 responds:

thank you sir, the kind of feedback i want. while making this i wanted to add a little bit more to the song, due to it being relatively short, ended up extending it a little too long lol. and thanks for including the genre it relates too, a little unsure myself, just put stuff together and i made this. i still need to "find my sound" if you get me.

Right or Wrong Right or Wrong

Rated 4 / 5 stars

thought this was piratecrab when i first heard it. how did that happen? :v

this kind of sounds like sevendust doing prog. vocals are fantastically delivered, the drums have that perfect groove metal flow and are really thoughtfully programmed and the bass and guitars always sit at a really nice volume. the overall mix is a little too dark though - i think the guitar and snare need a bit more presence around that 5K-8K area and less mids. vocals have been too heavily de-essed, kind of unclear sometimes - also kinda mono sounding even with the reverb so maybe give it some more width cause you want vocals to p-p-POP.

the pre-choruses need a bit more instrumental time to gel into the choruses properly. the thing about consecutive time signature changes and polyrhythms is that they get super messy when vocals are involved. typically when prog bands do vocals over odd-meter stuff it's usually kept relatively simple, and when it gets hairy the instrumental follows the lyrics rather than the opposite, which is what i felt was happening here in those pre-choruses. other than that it's all well composed imo

also, the render cuts off before the ride cymbal rings out properly. this sort of thing has happened a whole lot during this NGADM and it's one of my musical pet peeves haha

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No Joy Here No Joy Here

Rated 4 / 5 stars

so nice! some of the samples are kinda iffy; harp is super stiff sounding and the strings have really harsh highs, also kinda distorted sounding high notes on the piano. the instrumentation is really great though. love the way the strings swell and subside into the drumming section.

yeah the piano at the end is nice on its own but doesn't really sit right with the rest of the piece imo. i think another string swell towards the end would've helped to link it back to everything else. i feel like, melodically at least, there's this disconnect between the first and second half of the piece - a stronger main theme would help to tie everything together, and dispersing little leitmotifs throughout the later sections would help it feel like a cohesive musical story.

great effort in spite of many setbacks!

Into The Unknown Into The Unknown

Rated 4.5 / 5 stars

sure is a journey!
some of the sound effect work is kind of overdone imo, it's the kind of thing where you're just like "yeah its sci fi i get it" haha. i feel like you should be able to get the setting without really overt prompts like that. what i really liked is how you used some of the orchestra parts as sound effects; those laser beam piccolo glissandos in part 3 are perfect. more of that kind of stuff would've been great!

the feeling i get from the mix is dark and chalky - it really could do with a bit more top end sparkle and some midrange scooping. i also would've tried to push more sub bass in the spacious sections (e.g. start of part 1 & part 4). you're in the vast expanse of space but i'm not getting a sense of scale from the mix. appreciate the sub drop from part 1 into part 2, little details like that make me sploosh. the drums at the end really needed more oomph and a few variations on that main groove, they kinda felt like loops apart from those big prog-rock tom rolls.

solid musical storytelling and direction!

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Your Father's Blade Your Father's Blade

Rated 4.5 / 5 stars

mmm dat peter satera sound. no complaints on the mixing from me, loving how everything is coming together from a dynamic standpoint. hmm actually the brass in the left speaker is just a little bit too edgy in the climax... some of the eastern winds are a bit on the nose too i think, especially the higher parts with the gigantic glissandos - towards the end the balance seemed really off kilter. would've liked a bit more of a reverb tail on that last note, or maybe have the strings fade a little more gradually. anyway that's all fairly minor stuff.

i like that you've gone for quite a new kind of instrumentation, but it still feels like "just another peter satera track" to me. you've taken these instruments from a very particular setting to tell a story that, in many ways, is culturally specific. the problem is that the writing doesn't place the story anywhere - like, i feel as though you've missed an opportunity to play with some really exotic scales and harmonic content. even if you were going for something more celtic or gaelic it's not really touching on any place other than hollywood. i mean, even in terms of storytelling this feels like it needs more harmonic variation, as it stands it kinda sits on this one brooding emotion and just escalates the level of brooding.

still, really great work as it is. it's AAA trailer material, that's for sure. in retrospect, i was a little too harsh when i scored this a couple weeks ago but at the same time i was quite a bit more impressed with the last two entries. but i don't know, maybe if this was your round entry i'd have given it 11/10 :v

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PeterSatera responds:

Agree with the points you've made and that the brass is very edgy after a relisten.
Thanks for making the crits. Will take them on board. :)

404 404

Rated 4 / 5 stars

really fun composition!
the organs and epianos sound awesome. bass tone is really nice and creamy too. kor's playing is top notch and you layered him in really nicely.
the drums are exceptionally played, but the mono recording is such a let down - really sucks out a lot of the energy and takes away the separation between instruments. render gets cut short at the end, bit of a rookie error there.

i didn't really dig the main theme (i guess it was the main theme?) but the playful little motif in the middle was really cool, albeit a little too drawn out imo.

would've been much nicer with a stereo drum track and a saxophone that didn't sound like a keyboard demo tune.

camoshark responds:

Sup midi, thanks for the review!

You know what, I hadn't even realized up to now that the drums were all centered! They are far from mono, I think there were about six or seven separate tracks total, so I guess that was also overlooked during production...

The rest has already been said to death already, but not pointing it out would be overlooking the elephant in the room.

Thanks again!

Hope Hope

Rated 4.5 / 5 stars

really good, felt a lot tighter than your other pieces in the ngadm so far imo. great playing, love the way you cut the delays off so they don't overlap with following sections. the rhythmic stuff you're doing in this just amazing, such good use of polyrhythmic and odd-meter kick patterns, with really clever resolutions to 4/4 - the meshuggah as fuck ending, seriously perfect man.

some of the samples had a bit of a machine-gun effect sometimes, the snare most noticeably when you had the extra soft hits before the backbeat. the hi toms felt super weak, actually i would've liked the tom set in general to be more represented in the rhythm section. maybe i'm just a deaf dickhead tho.

the other thing was, to me at least, that the composition in the second half generally felt kind of unfocused, jumping between new sections without much common ground between them. the ending was still perfect though, holy shit.

redemption redemption

Rated 4.5 / 5 stars

really fucking nice song.
drums are super brittle and barely present in the mix though. this isn't in itself a bad thing, but the samples themselves don't convey the tone that you wanted them to, y'know what i mean? would've been AMAZING to have a really big drum climax imo, especially since that last synth solo section into the second lot of vox is so intense, and that trancey crash sound is GIGANTIC compared to the rest of the drums.

anyway, i love what you've done with all the different polyrhythmic delays. the synth work is a lot more delicate this time around but at the same time i love how you've kind of orchestrated everything and transitioned so thoughtfully between sections. great work on the vox, too. piano is really nicely voiced, love the soft bass notes.

i feel like the reverb is kinda washy, especially in the children-playing part. that whole set of sound effects there is kinda... well i think "obnoxious" is too harsh, maybe just not subtle enough i guess? but i appreciate the storytelling aspect of it.

Here Here

Rated 4.5 / 5 stars

the glitchy percussion and hi hat stuff is mint, it kinda has this nachtmar VS. early afx feel. the piano is so wide! the distortion is a good touch, not overdone at all. these little hp filtered wubs are sick, i like how you fade it in from super dry to nice and wet with the reverb there. really playful with the melodies, unique as fuuuuuuck.

not sure if i like your choice of kick, it's kinda fruity? definitely not digging the snare though, but at the start of the second chorus it has this extra overtone from another instrument that makes it sound really fat, like this kinda PHOOMP classic-brostep-backbeat sound but more subtle.

the fuckin outro, just when i was getting into these heaps eastern twiddly acid melodies and growing a taste for the unique production it all just kinda goes to shit haha. at least start plunging it all into chaos after the chorus so it actually feels like it dies down. still, gotta respect that you took a gamble, and i appreciate that it didnt just cut out like you totally couldn't be arsed.

well, everything else was really focused and well put together. so ya did good m8.