Gario

*NO* Undertale 'Break Ya Bones'

5 posts in this topic

Well, this is pretty unrelenting, with a strong beat and some really in-your-face... xylophone work? I like it.

The arrangement is pretty well done, with some pretty cool layering of two sections of the source toward the end to really make it stand out. The arrangement takes mostly an additive approach - taking the same thing and layering more and more complex instruments on top of each other. It's basic, but when it breaks away from that pattern things stay well paced and interesting, save for a pretty close repetition at 1:52 - 2:05 (There's a pulse in the brass that's different and a fill, but it's not noticeable enough of a change to distinguish it from the last iteration moments earlier).

Fun fact: put this on loop in your player and it loops frickin' perfectly. Not sure if that was intentional, but I thought it was a cool touch. The ending, while cutting off, sounds like it does so intentionally, which doesn't bother me too much.

The production is a bit hit or miss throughout - it's such a dense arrangement that it does indeed get crowded. There aren't many compression or limiting issues, though, which is pretty surprising for a track this dense. The brass that is used at 1:24 sound pretty mechanical, though, and they don't blend well with the rest of the track to boot. A pretty strange choice, and one I think the track would've benefited from using something more appropriate to the genre.

Strange instrument choice and crowding aside, I think this one is pretty cool. I can see some concerns with the arrangement getting static over time, but with the significant breaks that occur and the track's relatively short length I don't feel that's too damaging a concern. I think it's within our bar, so nice work on this.

YES

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I started off pretty dubious, with the thin soundscape and the slightly altered rhythm, but the SFX kicked it into gear for me.  Which is odd, because I'm usually not a fan, but they really added to the arrangement this time.

I'm definitely feeling Gario's crits about the arrangement taking too long to develop and being overcrowded.  It spent far too long on the main hook for my tastes, especially since it revisits it later on; I could have done with about one less loop per added element.  And then what would ordinarily be the main melody from 1:08-1:35 is almost inaudible; if I weren't already familiar with that melody, I'd be having a hard time making half of it out at all.  Even as it is, there are a couple of creative riffs where I can't really hear what's been done with them.  There's far too much conflict in the frequency range where the the melody hangs out: the hook, the snares, and even part of the bass synth overlap it and drown out a lot of it.

I had less of a problem with the fake brass than I did with the fake choir, since the latter was much more exposed.  It was also paired with perhaps the most generic "Whoop! Yeah!" effects imaginable.

I like a lot of the ideas here--the creative instrumentation was more of a highlight than a detractor for me, and it's full of energy--but it does drag, and the main melodic section, which should be the strongest part of the arrangement, needs some EQ work at least to clean up the mid-high to high range so each of the instruments, the lead especially, can be heard clearly.

NO (resubmit)

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Was waiting to see where the intro would go, since things were pretty repetitive for the first minute. The source tune was more marginalized in the background once the orch stab countermelody was placed in at :41.

The chorus at 1:08 sampled "It Takes Two" shouts sounded very stapled on top of and disconnected from the soundscape; they need to be blended in properly as more of a background player. Meanwhile, the choir vox was very mechanical-sounding and mainly added mud to the soundscape instead of effective padding. Whatever line is going on from 1:21-1:36 (brass? strings?) was pretty rigid as well.

Didn't notice how beefy the bassline was until 2:30, but it's certainly like that the whole way; good stuff there. Would have been better if the orch stabs and other instrumentation didn't sound muffled and washed out.

I could see the hard loop point annoying some people, but I was fine with it; not that this should be a factor, but it stayed faithful to the loop point in the source tune as well.

I like the energy here with the xylo opening, and the increased tempo and thick beats all help this stand apart from the feel of the original, so the personalization of the arrangement goes in the right direction. But as more and more elements were added, the lack of clarity in the mixing hurt this; it's needlessly lossy-sounding. Also, I recognize the gradual additive approach here as Gario pointed out, but agreed with MindWanderer that the track ultimately did feel repetitive for the start and could have been cut down. That said, the middle portion did present some new ideas and instrumentation changes.

Mainly, the mixing needs some TLC to not allow parts to get buried. If you can brighten this up and ensure the parts are properly EQ-ed and separated, this would be in much better shape. Good work so far, Bass.

NO (resubmit)

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