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I imagined something a bit more... picturesque when I listened to this, but if it makes you think of fat people, I guess that's fine too! I personally think it would great as 'credits music', or something scenic.

Anyway, the biggest issue with this song, is that it gets a bit repetitive after you've listened to it for the first time, which is a shame considering the nice tone it sets. Apart from that, there are some volume balancing issues here and there (some tracks sounding louder than they should, 1:56-2:01 for example). Furthermore, there isn't really a melody or anything, but depending on the kind of setting you're aiming for, this is not a bad thing per se. Another thing that does bother me however, is the somewhat cheap ending. I know it loops better this way, but it would've been worth investing a bit more time in it.

That said, all in all, it's not too shabby! Keep up the good work!

KanDuDor responds:

Thankyou :D

I've got to agree with TheoryGuy on this one, the effects pretty much make the piece! I'm guessing both 'jazz' as well as 'miscellaneous' would be fine to describe the genre.

What struck me most about this particular piece, is that underneath its 'basic' appearance there's quite a bit of complexity in terms of melodic and harmonic progression. All in all I really like the piece, although the ending was a bit abrupt. It's fast, it's catchy, and I think it would work really well for short movies.

There's not much I can say about the mastering / mixing, other than that it sounds fine the way it does now. That said, I don't think one can do much harm in these areas when only one instrument is being used.

All in all, a job wel done. Keep up the good work!

shieldurhope responds:

I agree with you.
I did think about a short movie when making this. Something like a villain with long, pointed eyebrows and nose tying a damsel in distress to a railway. That idea I originally used to make another song: "The Train Tracks", but here I thought I should stick to the original flavour.
Thanks for the review, hoping to do more stuff like this.

"How come THIS song didn't get the attention it deserves???" is the question you asked. Well...

First off, this song is really hard on the ears, and not in a good way, I'm afraid. Those high frequencies (ironically coming from the bass) are causing some serious listener fatigue. A good equaliser would have been your best friend here.

Apart from that, the piece is a bit dull. It feels more like a never-ending build-up than an actual song, although the final part is better than the rest. I personally dislike dissonance in most music (unless it's done 'really' well), so try to make your productions sound as harmonic as you can. Studying some additional music theory would be a good thing to do in this case.

Please try to take this all as constructive criticism. I can tell effort went into this, but there is still some work to be done, unfortunately.

Good luck!

The-MickMad responds:

For the frequency thing I actually didn't notice that; I'll see what I can do. About the dissonance, apart from an error I made near 2.06, I don't think there are any, but I'll try to spot them. Btw, thanks for giving this song the attention it deserves :)

Hehe, I must say, your piece put a smile on my face when I first listened to it. It sounds really goofy and would really fit the kind of games you describe. It's quite rare to see someone use Reason for orchestral productions, so that's a nice thing too see for a change.

Although there is a lot of variation to be found, the main melodies are repeated a bit too often for my taste, considering this is a rather short piece. Apart from that, the xylophone is a bit too loud in some parts and the climax at 00:36 - 00:45 could be toned down a bit to keep volume levels balanced. Of course, these are just small personal preferences.

All in all, a job well done!

Mattashi responds:

Thanks for the review :)

Composition-wise, this is quite a nice piece. I liked the way you progressed the chords, and they really set the mood well. There is, however, still room for improvement.

I personally don't recommend using Sibelius as your main sequencer, basically because that's not its main purpose. It's great for writing your scores with, but when it comes down to the actual production part, it's much better to work with a proper Digital Audio Workstation (DAW) like Cubase, Pro Tools, Sonar, Reaper, Logic etc. The main reason for this suggestion, is that it makes MIDI editing 'much' easier and it will allow you to achieve much more realism in your productions. Although the composition was quite nice, it still sounded a bit artificial during some parts.

There are also a few things mastering-wise that bother me a bit. The strings are rather hard-panned, which makes it somewhat unnatural to listen to. Yes, basses are usually seated at the right sight and violins at the left side, but now it sounds like I'm actually standing in the middle of the orchestra, which sounds a bit awkward, to be honest. Apart from that, the reversed cymbals (?) are also a bit too loud and are more of a distraction than a contribution to the song.

Apart from that, not much that I can say, really. The composition itself sounded fairly professional and the piece would work well in films / games.

Keep up the good work!

TheoryGuy responds:

Thanks for taking the time to review!

I use Sibelius first because I very much need to "see" my scores as I write them. It helps considerably with my vertical thinking and allows me to see the theory on the page in motion. Once I am satisfied with the work as a compositional effort, I recreate the sound in Reaper. I just figured some credit was due to Sibelius since I do indeed use it to start projects.

Audio engineering is still fairly new to me. I've made my entire career up to this point by writing for actual ensembles, which has served me well. I always welcome thoughts and comments about how to gain more skills at audio production. My degree is in composition, not engineering or production, after all!

Haha, those are some awesome staccato and tremolo runs! The song really fits that picture of Kornel Ravadits. Despite it being short a short piece, I really liked it! It would be great for an action sequence.

Anyway, as you might have guessed, I really like the composition. The complex runs nicely complement the otherwise simple structure and melodies. The brass sections add a sense of mellowness, while the strings nicely add to the tension.

As for the mix, everything sounds well in place. Some parts sound a bit harsh, so I'd suggest cutting the highest frequencies a bit, to soften it. The brass sections also sounds a bit overpowering compared to the strings in some parts. Other than that, it's fine.

All in all, a great piece! Keep up the good work ;)

My mind remained silent for a couple of minutes before I was able to write this review, because I simply wasn't able to express how amazing this piece is. If there exists something as a perfect score, then your piece comes extremely close to it. The scenes you described are really well defined by the music itself, and the musical elements you used fit really well, and make the piece as a whole sound really lifelike. The only issue I have with the mix, is that it is a bit too loud when the action starts, and sometimes the instruments sound a bit too sharp. Other than that, it's just about perfect, just like the composition itself, although the ending could have been less abrupt.

I really wish I could've been a bit more constructive with this review, but the track is of such high quality, it is beyond my skills to give you such advice. That said, all in all, this is a great piece of art and a true gem!

Ah, you have a good taste in VSTis! Shreddage is indeed nice for those heavier rhythm guitar sounds, although I personally prefer Musiclab's RealLPC for guitar sounds.

I generally really like epic orchestral music, and your piece is a great example of that kind of music. I really liked the composition, and the arrangement of instruments fit the style. The only thing that could use some tweaking, is the choir. I know the Requiem choir can only sing preselected phrases, but it sounded too random in your song. It's okay for them to sing gibberish, as long as it sounds as though there is some 'natural structure' in it (sanc-tus, instead of sanc-cre, for example).

Can't complain much about the mix either, it all sounds nice enough through my headphones. The guitar especially fits really well!

All in all, a very well written piece! Keep up the good work ;)

tigger888 responds:

thankyou very much for the review! Will try to make the choirs sound more realistic. yeah i love this genre, i havent heard too much of it, mixing orchestral with more modern elements.

Haha, nice cover/remix you have there! Too bad you didn't remix Orr's own full version of the song, but the game version is nice enough. Plus, it loops perfectly, so that's always a good thing.

I'm guessing you remade it by ear? The subtle changes compared to the original are quite refreshing, so overall there is nothing wrong with the composition/arrangement. Even though it sounds 8-bit-ish, it isn't true 8-bit (more than two pulse waves, for example). It might be worth exploring the limitations of the original 8-bit machines, as this will give your music a more authentic feel to it.

All in all, I quite liked your piece! (Maybe that's also because I love Castle Crashers in the first place...)

ThatJohnnyGuy responds:

no i listened to the loop game version lol thanks though, yeah I'm working on more 8bit stuff for a game, i see whatcha mean. Thanks :)

Haha, it's nice you added your voice, even though it can only be heard twice in the piece. Those little sparks of creativity are always nice to hear when I listen to something new. It doesn't sound unprofessional at all, and I'm really surprised it turned out that well, considering you recorded it with a headset!

I really like the composition. There's a lot of variety and the arrangement makes sense. The only thing that was a bit disturbing though, are those 'big drum' samples you used, specifically at 01:00 - 02:10. The infamous 'machine gun effect' is quite apparant here, so I suggest working with different velocity layers in the future (for all instruments, that is). True, it adds quite a bit of extra work, but the result is well worth it, and makes your production sound more natural and realistic.

The mix in general is decent enough. The only 'problem' I could find was with, again, the 'big drum' samples. Cutting the higher frequencies here might have been a good idea, as they tend to sound a bit too sharp compared to the other instruments.

All in all, a very well written piece! I'm quite curious to see what future productions you'll bring us.

DuttonsaysHi responds:

Thank you for the review! I'm happy when people can take the time to analyse and give me helpful feedback on my music. It really helps :D

It's nice to see I'm getting so good feedback from the voice. Since I haven't done anything like it before or used them in an actual piece, I didn't know how people would react. But it's nice to know it turned out well!

Haha I did play around with the velocity a lot with this one and that big drum sample is the thing I had the biggest problem with! There was a certain point in the velocity where if it was one point higher the in pact sound would be too loud. If it was a point lower it would just have a weak boom with no impact (it would remove the inpact hit completely). Looking back I could have tried filtering that sample alone. I also tried play some sequences on my MIDI keyboard before quantizing them to try and get that natural effect. It's good because it pick up the velocity in which I press the keys but I guess it wasn't so apparent this time... I'll be sure pattern out the velocity more carefully next time so they have a bigger impact :D

Again thanks for your overview! I really appreciate it :D

Hi, I write/compose/create music.

Arend van Stenis @EagleGuard

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Joined on 3/27/09

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