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About DaMonz

  • Rank
    Judge, Shuttle Remix Director
  • Birthday 02/05/1992

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Location
  • Interests
    Making video games, playing video games, making music, listening to music


  • Biography
    Co-founder, programmer and music composer at Takusan Works.
  • Real Name
    Emery Monzerol
  • Occupation
    Student, Programmer

Artist Settings

  • Collaboration Status
    2. Maybe; Depends on Circumstances
  • Software - Digital Audio Workstation (DAW)
  • Composition & Production Skills
    Arrangement & Orchestration
    Drum Programming
    Mixing & Mastering
    Synthesis & Sound Design
  • Instrumental & Vocal Skills (List)
  • Instrumental & Vocal Skills (Other)

Recent Profile Visitors

1,262 profile views
  1. First thing that I noticed listening to this is that I feel like this arrangement lacks energy. There are a few elements trying to keep the energy up, like the quick hi-hats and castanets, but most of the elements (the guitar, the synth leads, backing elements, eventually the snare and bass drums) sound very weak/low-energy to me. I feel like the intent isn't really cohesive throughout the different instruments, and it's really my biggest personal problem with the track. Also, specifically for the synth leads, I'm 100% with Chimp. Their current implementation really doesn't blend well with the rest of the instrumentation. The sound is way too wet to be able to pierce through and have a strong effect (the phaser effect on the some of the leads, and the vibrato on all of them, are both particularly applied way too heavily). I also agree that more interpretation would be really great, and that this feels like a cover for a big part of the track. This combined with the lack of energy drop this below the bar for me. NO
  2. Not much more to be said here (again). Greg and Mike got things very well covered. I agree that the arrangement is very nice, the writing stands out to me as being particularly strong during the solos, but the whole arrangement showcases great writing skills for sure. I also have to agree that the production is deal-breaking, though. The bass is definitely too loud compared to everything else, and the synth lead's sound design is very generic. The general balance feels off, and I recommend rethinking the levels of the mix to try and identify what the priorities are, what should be heard up front, etc. I'd love to hear this with improved production. I hope you'll rework it! NO (resubmit)
  3. I have to agree with both of my colleagues here. The arrangement is fun, but the production is definitely a problem that needs to be addressed. I think the biggest problem is in the bass drum eating up most of the space, which I don't think works well with such a busy writing. It's not the only problem, though, as was already pointed out. I don't want to beat a dead horse, Greg and Mike were very specific on the issues present in your track, but I do want to stress that the low-end was particularly problematic because of the multiple tracks fighting for space in that range. I strongly recommend looking for in-depth mixing and mastering advice, and the Workshop boards here can be a great place for that. As it is now, I have to agree that a lot of work needs to be done to make the production on par with the site standards. The arrangement *is* fun though, so I hope you'll keep trying to improve your production skills. Best of luck! NO
  4. This is very nice! Beautiful arrangement, and cool concept for sure. I have to agree that the break in the middle is *quite* long, and is honestly the biggest deal-breaker for me. The storm alongside the music didn't bother me as much, but I do think toning it down just a little wouldn't be a bad idea. I also think there's just too much repetition once we get into the second half of the track, and more variation would go a long way. This is definitely very close, and I hope you'll send in a revised version soon! NO (borderline)
  5. Well, this is fun! Where are the balls though? Production is clean, arrangement is cool, I don't think the SFX are overdone. I want to ask @Chimpazilla though, the last note in both runs of the initial theme (roughly 0:22 and 0:26) are a semitone lower than what we usually hear in the source, is that intentional? It can very well be an intentional divergence from the original to give it a different color, but since it was such an isolated change I thought it might have been unintentional. It's not a problem at all, but I wanted to point it out just in case. Good stuff! YES
  6. I'm basically in full agreement with Gario's vote here. I also think the arrangement flows well enough to not suffer from medleyitis. Although, I have to agree that the execution is deal-breaking here. I don't want to beat a dead horse, so I'll just redirect you to Gario's comments on that because I don't think I could state it clearer anyway. I will also add that the bass seems to be having some strange hiccups around 4:50-4:56 that should definitely be addressed, if you decide to send in a revised version. And please do! There are plenty of great ideas in your arrangement (as usual) and I'd love to hear them executed better. Best of luck, Rebecca! NO (resubmit)
  7. Okay, so here's my take on a source breakdown: 0:23-1:20 melody on the harp and strings 1:27-1:32 melody on the brass 1:46-2:30 melody on the brass again 2:30-2:38 melody on the strings 3:00-3:20 evocative chords, but don't add to the count IMO 3:48-4:11 melody 4:55-5:24 melody (a bit drawn out) 330 seconds of music, 166 seconds of source: 50.3%. Source usage (barely) checks out. Let me know if you think my breakdown is wrong, @Liontamer With that out of the way, I really like your track. I agree with Mike, and I think the arrangement is excellent. I think the volume contrasts are appropriate, and don't seem like an issue to me. I think this is a very expressive package that tells an engaging story. The Howard Shore influences are definitely present, and I think it was a great idea that you executed quite well. I also think the low-end should have been toned down, and the reverb is arguably slightly too much, but they're not enough to bring this below the bar, in my humble opinion. YES
  8. Okay, the first thing that I want to say is that the basslines are indeed super awesome, and the marching band snare writing caught me by surprise and I really, really liked it! The bass and percussion writing are definitely the strongest parts of your track, they're both *super* tasty. They really are what make the arrangement stand out as being great, in my opinion. The synth and guitar work left me a bit wanting, though. The simple synth design is fun, but I personally think the lack of expression brings its value down. For example, instead of having a constant vibrato applied to it, I think applying vibrato only on specific notes/timings would go a long way in making the melodies more enjoyable. Adding more subtleties to the writing in the melody (like slides, bends, etc.) would also have been a lot of fun. I also agree that the guitar sounds pretty synthy and live guitar would most probably make this even better. These issues are definitely not enough to bring this below the bar, though, and I'd be glad to see this on the front page. Nice work! YES
  9. I agree that the arrangement is great, there's no question there. Nice work on that! I think sample quality wasn't much of an issue, but the mix drowned in low-end breaks the deal for me. As mentioned by Mike, I also think the reverb doesn't help on the mix issues. I'd recommend slightly reducing the reverb's decay, and heavily dropping the lows of your reverb patch, because it's most probably only adding unwanted rumble. Maybe reducing a bit of the Amp Env decay on some of the booming low percussion instruments would help reducing the constant low-end rumbling, and some careful EQ'ing might also help. The lack of humanization also bothered me, but wasn't part of the deal-breaking problems for me. If you send a revised version, though, some more work there would definitely be appreciated. Best of luck! NO (resubmit)
  10. The arrangement is fun and has a interesting progression, and it's nice to have live performances. Although, the performances on the violin and cello in the first part of the arrangement broke the deal for me. The articulations often seemed unnatural to me, but what really distracted me were the off-pitch notes, especially on the cello. The cello run around 1:00 sounded very off-pitch and completely threw me off. That combined with the unnatural articulations, and the violin having a bit of those issues as well, are too much for me to pass this, I'm sorry. I also agree with Deia that the ending felt a bit too anti-climactic, but that's not a deal-breaker. I hope I'm not being too harsh. I'd recommend practicing the first section some more, and I'd love to hear this again with improved performances. Best of luck! NO (resub)
  11. Quick co-sign here. Arrangement is super awesome, mixing sounds good to me. I agree that the overall panning felt a bit tilted to the right because of the chip plucks, but it didn't bother me all that much. This is easily over the bar. Nice work! YES
  12. This is conservative all right, and I agree that it would need some more interpretation in order to be appropriate for OCR. Still on the arrangement side, I think adding a smoother intro and outro to the track would be a nice plus. I think the biggest problem is the production, though. This seems overcrowded even though there is a limited set of instruments, and that's because most of them currently play in very similar (and broad) frequency ranges. Your leads seem to use a particularly large portion of the frequencies, and I would strongly suggest revising their sound design to take less space. In my personal experience, I find that leads with more compact, localized frequency usage seem to often have more impact. I also suggest reviewing the effects/sound design on your bass. It seems quite wet and undefined, which probably also contributes a lot to the track sounding muddy and unclear. Other than that, I suggest you take the precious advice provided by the other judges. You have a nice potential, and I think you should keep working to try and improve your skills. I hope to hear more submissions from you! NO
  13. Mike and Kris pretty much covered everything, so I'll be brief. First, I think this is a fun arrangement that definitely deserves better production, and I'm sure you're able to bring it over the bar. I agree that the lead at 1:15 blends much better with the track than the other leads, and I think reworking those would help your track a great deal. Kris's comments about volume and reverb are accurate, and I think you should try to apply them. I also suggest to review their sound design. Kick and snare with more impact should then be the next priority, in my opinion, to provide a stronger drive for the track. I hear there already seems to be sidechaining on the pads, and applying sidechain on the bass might help, but I think adding too much of it might end up changing your vision of the track, so I'd advise caution with that. I hope you'll address these issues and send in a revised version! NO (resubmit)
  14. Most have already been said, so I'll be brief. This is very interesting, the approach and instrumentation are quite fun. I like the arrangement. Sure there is repetition, but I think the progression works so it doesn't bother me at all. The issue that stands out to me the most is the low-end rumble I'm getting from the booming percussion. It's quite bothersome, and fixing that would have been great. Although, I don't think it's breaking the deal. Other than that, nicely done! YES