All 12 Audio Reviews

5 w/ Responses

Hey Helloyourbored,

I really enjoyed this fan rendition that was inspired by Tales of Zale! If you are not familiar with who I am; I'm the composer on the Tales of Zale series, and I wanted to say you did an awesome job with this piece.

I really enjoyed the atmospheric themes here. There are some varying moods here which is quite fitting to the Tales of Zale universe. It's really emotional and heartfelt throughout, and there is a lot of musical ideas here which is also great.

It was somewhat difficult to focus on the music with some of those sound effects, but it did help the entry sound more cinematic, making it sound like there is another media counterpart to go along with this piece, which is essentially what film music is.

The samples are not top-of-the-line, but I could hear through them and can really identify your talent in composition. Someday, when you get some really great sounding orchestra libraries, you'll be making high quality cinematic works in no time!

From a compositional and thematic standpoint, I do think there is room for improvement in terms of establishing a solid thematic musical motif. It's great as background music as it goes on, but a lot of character can truly shine when your piece of music has a very enticing musical theme/motif, even if it is very simple. In cinematic music, this is very essential as thematic elements help to support and compliment the story and plot of it's visual counterpart. Even if you are not writing to picture, keeping this in mind will help you create some wonderful cinematic pieces.

I enjoyed your track and I hope you continue to explore your creativity.


Irish-Soul responds:

I would just like to say that I am 100% honored that you left a review on my song! I have seen other music you make and it is very impressive. I also saw the FL studio makeup of the actual ToZ 2 soundtrack. The skill you have is truly amazing. I aspire to have the skill level you are at. I can also understand why there would be such difficulty implementing this into the actual episode.

I am sure you went soft on the review for my song, for I'm sure it had many other mistakes. I have never made a cinematic song before so this was a HUGE learning experience. GarageBand was one of the hardest obstacles to overcome. I would also like to thank Hikuaran and yourself for this opportunity to join the contest with a song. Thank you for leaving information for a beginner!

As far as musical motifs go, I also agree. Next time I make a cinematic song (Or most songs for that matter) I will focus on creating a motif that will be strong. Thanks for pointing that out or else I may have never noticed that.

Thank you so much for leaving a review!

I could've just eaten some Chipotle and recorded the noises I make a few hours after I ate it. Would've ended up with the same exact result.

But really gross awesome stuff dude :D

Hey there! I'm going to try my review questionnaire template that I have on my tracks, so I hope that's okay with you.

1. What what were some of the first musical ideas/elements in this track caught your attention?
>>> Considering your use of tonal samples, the background music you've provided under the samples fit quite well with the chopped up samples. Awesome!

2. What are some aspects of this track you think may need improvement and how would you personally improve on it?
>>> I feel like the sampled elements should be a bit more legible, both in understanding what the vocals were saying as well as more clarity on the tonal elements of the sample.

3. Could you see this track being used for a professional commercial setting? If so, where would this track be applicable? (i.e. video games, TV, movie soundtrack)
>>> This just sounds like a fun track to listen to for fun :D

4. If I've noted this track's function ("Made for a video game" etc...) do you feel that I've potentially fulfilled it's purpose for said use?
>>> n/a

5. How is the recording/mixing/production quality overall? (1-10 rating is fine, feel free to write more if you'd like to make some points about the production quality).
>>> Some of the percussion elements aren't mixed too well with the overall timbre the track creates. It's a bit too upfront and punchy especially with the snares and cymbals.

6. Do you feel this track is well arranged and composed as a stand-alone piece and/or a functional (to be applied for commercial/professional use) piece of music?
>>> As this is mostly a remix/sampled sort of track it actually executes that quite well. Nice work!

Very nice game themes here. Guitar playing is very solid and the lead melody works extremely well for what you're trying to accomplish. I think adding more layers should've came in a bit earlier instead of at the very very end. I'd personally like to hear more variation in the middle, or maybe some sort of development or "B Section." Other than that, this should serve it's original function as game music very well. Great job!

Blacklawn responds:

I didn't want to stray too much away from the main theme, but you might be right.

Wow, well that was pretty intense... Everything was really well done! I didn't know really what this was at first, but I was taken in within the first few seconds. Things got real for sure! I never really heard much like this before, and I must say this is really awesome! I want to mention some specific things from the story, but I don't want to spoil anyone.

Amazingly, for the length it was perfect how everything came together.

VoicesByCorey responds:

I'm really glad you enjoyed it Matthew! Hopefully we can have you work with us on the next project!

The intro section here really drew me in. Not expecting the trance-techno elements coming up soon helped to make the entrance of the initial beat much more exciting. The vocal element that's there is actually pretty well-fitted to the style you've produced here as well.

However, I did feel that bassline at the entrance of the beat wasn't as fitting as it could be. Not much about the actual music you have there, maybe it was just the synth you had there.

Overall I think you really captured the essence of this track making sure everything was relevant and was for the better of the production.

Good stuff! Keep it coming!

As per your description; A "lonely" feeling is not really what I sense here. It seems a bit heavy when the piano and the bass line comes in, and it might be a little abrupt. It may be your choice in instruments and the way you texture them, more specifically the piano. MIDI or synthesized piano can be a bit harsh especially when you leave the velocity alone and let it stay at one velocity for each note. The square feel of the groove here does help make sense of it though. 0:37 is a nice phrase, but as the phrase draws to a close it gets a bit thick when you add in the previous instruments (and the same parts for that matter). The automation with the speed is really cool and starts to create something totally new, right at the end I do start to see how it could seem "lonely" as you described. Now, just throwing out ideas here; it would be cool to arrange a whole section of this track based on what the ending sounds like. Basically you'd be further developing it into a development section and then maybe somehow going back to the ideas from the beginning. The harmony overall is very interesting. I'm reminded of many minimalist pieces, but this is sometimes what some younger producers end up doing unintentionally when they create tracks that are loop-based or heavily reliant on recycling short phrases. Don't know if it was intentional in your case, but it does have that vibe. The instruments were rocking out a little too hard at times, considering your beat was a little more mellow, laid back and chilled out. I think if you spent a little more time with refining some of your instrument choices and take notice in the overall texture you create, it would really help portray the expressive ideas you really want to evoke onto your listeners. Enjoyed it :]

I think what you have here sounds really nice. I understand you're just using soundfonts but I try to see past that when listening. You can still make your piano and whatever sounds still sound emotional. Even if you are playing in the notes with a MIDI controller or not, there's a lot you can do with velocity editing and automation. I think some of the textural sounds-capes you have created using orchestral instruments fits well with the music. It may be a little pop-ish for my taste, but it sounds nice and that's what really matters. I feel there is a lack of melody and with this very strong chord progression, there is more than enough room to come up with a simple, yet effective melody for your piece.

I know for one, I am not the kind of person to go back and fix things like that since I just take it for what it is and move on to another project.

Take it or leave it, that's my two cents.

I would really love to hear more from you. See if you can spend some time trying something a bit out of your comfort zone. Push your boundaries a little, who knows it might spark something great in your writing.

If you need any technical or music related advice let me know, I'm always glad to help.

Krichotomy responds:

I just placed all the notes with a mouse. I do have a keyboard that I can hook up to MIDI but the keys are just ON/OFF buttons so it doesn't allow for much expressiveness. I intended to go back and vary the volume of the piano notes but the project files don't work right anymore.

I'm not aware of soundfonts having a velocity adjustment.

This music is intended to just be variations around the main note progression and I didn't want any melodic elements standing above that.

Out of my comfort zone = jazz. Grin.

Thanks for the advice and the offer for more advice.

This is a good hip-hop vibe. Really tasteful groove and musical ideas here man. My only concern is that your Beast Wars sample is a off time to the beat, enough that it feels a little uneasy to listen to when it comes in. I really think that theme fits, but it has to be in time with the groove.

You've got some nice content here compositionally. I do think that you should work on writing some profound melodies instead of orchestrated harmony and textures which you've already shown you can do very well. The thing about samples at times, I can hear you are using primarily EWQL right? Correct me if I'm wrong about that, but anyways there are some negative side effects have on people who compose using samples, and you kind of lose that element of orchestration techniques because we would rely soley on how the samples sound instead of making good orchestration choices, that would also apply to real live players, I know it may not be important to people who never aspire to write for a real orchestra, but good orchestration techniques are extremely effective in mock-up productions like this one.

As for the "complex music theory composition" feel, aurally, I cannot hear anything too complex except some direct modulation, and a pretty average use of harmonic tensions. Anything that isn't a chord tone is just color, passing tones, or harmonic tensions. There isn't anything particularly complex here. Game music that is simplistic and minimal can have very complex musical elements such as modal interchange that actually sounds pretty "simple" or "normal" to someone who isn't knowledgeable in music theory or composition. For example, a good harmonic idea to try out is the use of minor iv in a major key, and things written more in a modal style doesn't make it more complicated, in fact writing modal music is actually taking a step back in music theory as modal music was from some of the early periods of music when things were just getting started; composers from the early medieval period and Renaissance (Perotin, Hildegard, Dufay to name a few) did some stuff like that sounded extremely complex but in a different sense.

Too much rambling on here sorry. I can hear some of the things you have done that was you trying to explore more outside of the normal game type music and that's great, more people should do that these days, and this would fit well in a video game. I would just love to hear a very strong melody next time! (Maybe the composing job didn't call for if this was for one, I don't really know)

Also for everyone else who knows music theory really well it would be great to see some of your compositional notes so we can kind of get an idea of what you were trying to do here, and it is great to see how you apply what you know musically in your work.

Just as an example I have one I recently posted, I give some notes and even post the orchestral score if you want to use kind of what I do with my descriptions as a template for your own:
http://www.newgrounds.com/audio/liste n/510038

If and when you reply to this, can you PM me your response as well, I might not get notified if you reply.

Thanks and best of luck to you on the contest and any of your future musical endeavors!

4 stars for some solid work!

I am a video game/film music composer. I would love to work with you in a new project! If you wish to contact me feel free to send me a message here.

Matthew Pablo @deadlyfishes

33, Male

Music Composer

Berklee College of Music

United States

Joined on 5/15/11

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