Sir_NutS

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Everything posted by Sir_NutS

  1. Quick listen: Arrangement is on the conservative side but it does have some extra layers and some structural changes as well as a few original sections. I think it could've gone a just bit further on the interpretation side but this is a nitpick. I did like that it changed things up substantially with the lo-fi break and the acoustic guitar section. The production seems solid, though it sounds a bit too boomy and compressed to my ears. I think it would've been better sounding with a more relaxed mix, some more headroom and space, and some air. Overall, this sounds pretty good to me, good luck with your sub!
  2. The Workshop doesn't have a direct effect in the judging process in the sense that, we don't go look at the workshop thread and feedback for every single mix (I do it for some though). But it does serve as an indirect help in the sense that every track that doesn't meet the bar and reaches the queue adds more time and work to the panel and thus slows the queue down. When a track is approved by a workshop moderator, which again, go through the same interviews, tests etc. as judges, it has a very high chance of making it through the panel and makes evaluation quicker and easier. It also saves time and headaches for the artists, as submitting a song, waiting X months only to get it rejected is not ideal, most artists would've moved on from that track already into new things, or even evolved beyond what they showed on that track and probably wouldn't be that keen on going back to it. The workshop feedback is supposed to be more immediate to help you fix issues in a much shorter timeframe, but again, that's not always working as intended because the workshop staff can get burnout or life gets in the way and that queue gets clogged too. Anyways, it doesn't hurt to show off your track in the workshop or even join the workshop discord channel and ask for a listen there, possibly get some feedback and have a better chance at making it past the bar, especially if you're new to creating music or don't have a posted remix yet. Even though I should have a good idea of where the bar is, I always try to get a friend to listen to it and tell me if it's good enough or check for issues.
  3. Yeah the workshop is supposed to fill that role. The recruiting process for workshop mods is even the same as those for judges so they are effectively another layer. Not every artist knows or uses the workshop though, so a lot of subs don't go through that. One thing to consider is, burnout/real life happens to the guys in charge of that too so it can get clogged as well. It all boils down to: it's a hard, volunteer, pay-less and sometimes thankless job, and having a large judge panel doesn't exactly help either, only having motivated people does, but motivation is hard to mantain for years and years (I have so much respect for Larry for that). Not an easy problem to solve, if we want to mantain quality.
  4. Not sure how much her brother had a hand in this one but it indeed sounds a bit louder and less delicate, neither better or worse, just different. That aside, this is yet another good piece from Ms. Tripp. I do think this one is much closer to the original than other submissions in both feel and arrangement, and I think it could've been pushed a bit more on the interpretation side of things, but the original's style closely resembles hers so it would be harder to achieve this. Either way, I don't have that many gripes, other than the low wind instrument that serves as a backdrop to a large portion of the track, and it kinda gets in the way sometimes, and it just drones on one note for too long. But overall, solid stuff. YES
  5. NGL Jaleco games didn't have the most memorable music, but Shatterhand has some decent tunes, albeit it retained the highly repetitive nature of other soundtracks from this company. This remix starts out in that same vein, with the main hook being repeated a lot... and really, it never stops repeating. You had some good ideas to get around this: first, you switched instruments on this hook after a few measures, also made some small note changes here and there to keep things fresh. There are some interesting instruments supporting the main melody line as well, though I found the main beat a bit lacking in power and kinda forgettable. There's also a small break and near the end, a weird slowdown of the track's tempo. hmm. Another thing is that you kept this track's length very short. These are all good measures to take when remixing a short and repetitive song but I'm trying to decide if it all worked well. Despite everything the track still feels very repetitive and under-developed. I think that the 1:28 section is brilliant in that it's right where it should be to break the monotony, but sadly it's underdeveloped and just a couple measures later we get the main hook back. I think that if you extended this section even just a couple measures more, adding your own interpretation and takes on the original's progression or even a short solo of your own making, coming back to the original hook wouldn't feel so bad. I'm not sure I like the slowdown near the end, feels out of place... although if the track was developed more, and the slowed section was shortened, this ending could work. I would like to see you extend this just a little bit and giving it more of yourself instead of relying too much on the main hook which brings too much repetition with it. I think you got a great idea here just needs a bit more development. NO (please resubmit)
  6. A few issues with this one: first, the track feels extremely static, this may be due to the buildups not being handled properly or large portions of the track extending for too long without showing much development or interesting stuff to listen to (the pad/choir breakdown is a good example of this). I think this is an issue that extends throughout the rest of the mix and the duration could've been cut down significantly without losing much. This spills into the structure making the whole thing feel drawn-out. The production could use some work as well. The samples feel simplistic, although this may be on purpose, it doesn't work very well here. The main snare has tons of splash but no oomph, which makes it sound sorta silly when isolated as in the first few minutes of the track. The bassline of four octave-jumping notes tends to get in front of a lot of other elements and doesn't sound very interesting. Some elements like the bells are alright and fit the mood of the track well, but for the most part, the texture selection here is a mixed bag. 8 Minutes is a lot of time for a single track and you've got to make sure you keep the listeners' attention if you're asking for that much time, and I don't think this track manages that. Cut it down to something more manageable and make your ideas more concise. A neat, solid and to the point package will fare better than something that feels that it takes longer than it should for little return. NO
  7. A pretty basic arrangement with not-so-great instruments. The kick has a weird noise release on its click that doesn't sound too great and is pretty exposed. The main beat kicks in at 0:30 only to go back to the four on the floor kick-only pattern a couple of measures later. This happens several times, and well, these are buildups that build to nothing. In electronic music you have to make your buildups count, otherwise, they end up sounding pretty amateurish. The real buildup to the main melody happens at around 2:03, and it works there, building sufficient energy and expectation for the main hook, but the payoff is not there, and the main lead is pretty flimsy and weak sounding. The backdrop, bass, and harmonies are being eaten by the drums and so they can hardly be noticed. The second section after this doesn't bring much energy or anything new to the table, arrangement-wise. Also, there's an audible click at the end of the track. I did like some details such as the reversed drum hit to segue into the next measure of the beat, and some of the transition effects but overall, this needs a lot of work. Don't get discouraged as this is some of your first work and there's still a lot to learn. NO
  8. Really good stuff here. What I enjoyed the most was the detail in the ambiance textures used throughout the track, though that's only one thing that makes this track pretty awesome, as arrangement itself is pretty creative and unique. some sections like 2:22 or 4:07 may throw off some listeners used to the original due to the unusual harmonies and structure but I really loved them. The production side of things is good as well, with great sequencing and performances. The fadeout ending is kind of a bummer, but there's tons of attention to detail everywhere, great production and most important of all, oozing creativity. YES
  9. This track starts out pretty conservative but it does evolve after a while, and the additions and changes fit extremely well. I have a few issues with this though, and it's that some aspects of it can get pretty repetitive. The main rhythm hook is pretty prevalent throughout, and the drums can feel on autopilot after a while. The production is ok, although the different guitar parts can get cluttered and lost in some of the busy sections. Overall I think the pros outweigh the cons here and this is an enjoyable track with some solid interpretation that is seamlessly introduced with the original arrangement. YES
  10. I like the mood you've got going here. I think using sidechaining so heavily it's an stylistic choice, and yes I think the heavy pumping is due to sidechaining, not the kick causing undesired compression on the whole track, otherwise the whole track would sound smashed to bits with such levels of compressions as to make the whole track react like that to a single element. I could be wrong but this is what it sounds like to me. That said, I do think it gets a bit tiresome after a while but it's not a big issue for me, maybe I'm used to hearing this effect on too many mainstream tracks. I do take issue with the static nature of the arrangement. It feels very monotonous and like not much is changing. The piano hook is used as an anchor throughout the track and I wouldn't have an issue with that if we had the surrounding elements feel more varied or like they introduce new ideas. The beat gets a tad repetitive as well. With all that said I still think it's an enjoyable track, you just need to cut some fat from it. It doesn't need to be over 6 minutes long in my opinion, if you cut it down a bit I would've passed it as-is. Of course, introducing more variety instead of cutting it down could also work. Either way, I didn't have an issue with your production, just the repetitive nature of the track. Please take this into consideration for a revision. NO (Resubmit)
  11. quote-voting here because MW pretty much sums up my thoughts on this. However, I'm more borderline on my vote because man that ostinato got old after the first couple minutes and it only got more aggravating as the track progressed. The surrounding ambient elements are nice as well as the variations and as a whole, I think it barely makes it. YES (Borderline)
  12. Very soothing and relaxing track, the arrangement is mostly lead by the woodwinds, leaving the bells and harps as a supporting role, and it works very well IMO. The additional ambient effects give a "relaxing in the forest" feel. The interpretation follows the original pretty closely, albeit at a slower pace and with more detailed layers and variations. Also, since this is based on the Twilight princess version of this tune, it changes the original dark/mysterious mood into something different. Production seems fine, although the overall volume seems a bit low. Very enjoyable listen that's bound to please Zelda and relaxing music fans. YES
  13. Pretty excellent stuff, getting some modern Sonic the Hedgehog vibes from this. Fast, extremely energetic, and well-performed. Super cool breakdown at 3:24. If I had to be nitpicky I would say the transitions are a bit sudden and some sections feel like they're being repeated without much change, but nothing that detracts me from enjoying this. Nice Work. YES
  14. Bass a bit too strong right off the bat, but thankfully not as strong as to drown the whole thing. Good spacing of the instruments. Pretty exposed dissonance at around 1:51. Mix could be cleaner overall. Performances are alright, if we can reach out to the artists to see if we can get a fix on the offkey bit that'd be great. Not sure if we should go ahead with it as-is since this bit is very obvious, but for now I'll go with a pass. YES
  15. As always, Jorito delivers a great, detailed arrangement that also sounds pretty clean. I love that this retains that classic Konami feel to the music, almost as if this was the version of this track for a modern remake. The addition of the real instruments just help lift this track even higher, as the lines are perfectly delivered. They do seem to create a contrast between them and the sequenced elements that exposes the artificial orchestral elements a bit, but nothing to detract from the track as a whole, IMO. YES
  16. I wasn't part of the original voting so this will be a fresh take. First off, I love the SQ8L VST and OB-Xa emulations such as OB-XD or OB-X, and I use them in a lot of my songs. They're great for those old school lush analog-like sounds and in the case of SQ8L, pretty much anything old school synth from bells to brasses, strings etc. I do have to agree with the original votes that the sounds themselves are pretty vanilla and (this is subjective) the mix of synth textures from devices that are prominently used in older electronic and rock productions from the 80s being brought into a kinda late 90s trance arrangement just messes with my producer brain big time. I wasn't a huge fan of the shifting of the melody, it breaks the structure (not in a good way) in some sections. I.E., the buildup at 1:20 just loses a ton of impact when the lead melody continues playing over the top of the buildup and climax. I don't feel that buildup worked at all because of this. Transitions overall weren't handling the energy in the song very well imo. This seeps into other issues. Other judges mentioned they had issues with loudness levels but I actually think they're not egregious, however since the transitions and buildups are not being handled properly it seems like there are sudden loud sections preceded by very low-volume ones without anything preparing the listener for what's coming. 1:06 is a good example of this. I do have to say on the fuller sections the lead synths and stacked saws do skit a very thin line of what's bearable to my ears. Overall, texture quality is ok for me and I'm not taking into account what I mentioned about some of the synths seeming out of place in this genre for me because that's my dumb nerd brain acting up. But the transitions and structure are a problem because this either causes or exacerbates balance issues regarding the dynamics of the different sections. This is very very close, I think these issues could be addressed with another pass however, the mix as it is is ok. I just wish it could be worked on more to be just a bit more than just ok, but there aren't enough objective reasons for me to send this back. YES.
  17. Sir_NutS

    Bit Wig Studio?

    Yeah I've been using Bitwig since release and I don't think I will need to switch anytime soon. The strong points of bitwig are the modular possibilities, the sandboxing of VSTs which is the absolute best of all the DAWs I've tried (and I've tried almost all of them except Logic) and the quick workflow it offers. Also, I'm not sure if this is a thing nowadays but you can use 32 and 64 bit VST2 and VST3 devices on the same project without any issue. I know I had issues with this in a couple of DAWs a few years ago (Sonar comes to mind). However, it's also a relatively young DAW, compared to the mainstream ones that have been around for more than a decade, so you might find here and there some stuff that's considered "basic" in other DAWs is not yet available in BW. So if you want to switch I recommend trying to at least make a couple songs on it to see if you're going to miss anything pivotal from your previous DAW. Overall, I've always said the best DAW is the one you know. Don't switch for the sake of switching. But if you're curious about having a modular DAW with the best VST support then check BW out. A note on Reaper: it's cheap, and also has a vast feature list. However in my experience it was very clunky and the workflow never quite clicked for me. Even after doing some deep customization on it (which is one of its strong points, as it's highly customizable) I just couldn't feel at home. I did produce a few songs on it but left it after BW came out, whose workflow clicked for me quicker than any other DAW before it. So be warned that Reaper is famous for having a steep learning curve, but also packing tons of features. edit: Also, I have a Nektar LX48. The nektar controllers are basically made for BW's workflow, specially if you're into live performances.
  18. I'm going to disagree with the other Js here and say that I think this is good enough for the front page, albeit barely. The repetitive nature of the drums didn't bother me as there was some variation here and there, and they served their purpose which was to bring energy and a sense of speed to the arrangement. I do think the artist tried quite a few things to break the monotony, with fills, breaks, glitch/panning effects, etc. Some of the parts feel like they're copy-pasted throughout the mix however there is re-arrangement found in most of the lead instruments, and even some harmonies come with interesting variations. There's some call-and-response going on as well which I don't find in the original (1:35) Plus, this re-arrangement comes with extra layers of harmonies and depth compared to the source. The production is clean and every instrument seems to have its own space. There's modulation and detailing going on with the textures and leads. Nothing jumps out to me as egregious. I honestly wasn't expecting much after I listened to the source which is pretty bland in my opinion, but this mix was very fun to listen to and I feel it has its merits. The fadeout ending though, not cool. But that's rarely if ever ground for rejection to me. YES
  19. Yep this is pretty good. Fairly close to the source though, Trent's scream of agony included and all, but the rhythmic changes on the guitars and the more developed drums take the original to a different, more modern-sounding path. Still, I wish you didn't follow the structure of the original, even going with the completely atmospheric last section. Some of the arrangement choices remind me of Mick Gordon's Doom OST, with the heavy, coordinated drum hits and guitar chugs. Again, I wish the last section was something else, that would've made this remix more unique (and interesting) but I can't say it doesn't belong in the front page because it's not perfect. It's a pretty good remix that it's sure to please the fans of the original theme. YES
  20. I've listened to this for a while, and I've gone and read the other Js comments on this one before putting down my vote because I'm pretty undecided here. On one hand it's a very dark and heavy sounding remix which doesn't have the best mixing to make it shine. There's quite a bit of mud and everything seems to fuse into the rhythm guitars at some points. The low quality of the instruments is both problematic and kinda cute in a way. It makes sections like 1:09 sound really amateur-ish, but I also kinda love it at other points, i.e. 1:48 where it almost sounds like a nod to the original source's sample quality. I agree with both Larry and Gario on their reasoning for their votes. Overall I think this just makes it above the bar, but just barely. It's kind of bittersweet to give this a thumbs up because the issues are very apparent and probably easily fixable, but not enough for a rejection IMO, so it just leaves me thinking what the track would've sounded like with just one more production pass. YES (Borderline)
  21. Remixing a theme that has been done hundreds of times and making it truly your own is not an easy task, but I think you managed to do just that here. I am pleased with how far you went with the interpretation but somehow you kept the feeling of the original there at all times. Then you coupled your arrangement with details like the slowing clock at the end and the reversed piano and effects in the intro to make this one of the most interesting remixes of this theme I've heard. The production is ok here, it gets loud when it needs to but I don't hear any clashing that distracts me from the arrangement. Sometimes I feel the leads get buried a bit behind the backing (i.e. 2:15) but as a whole i think the production is above the bar. YES
  22. Damn, this song has a perfect buildup to some face-melting goodness at 0:56. I wasn't expecting this going in that hard but I was pretty happy it did. There's an ample expansion of the original source here, and I'm honestly impressed that you managed to make such a long track and it never gets into repetition or staleness issues. The soloing is intense, and I loved that ending. Production is clean and full, the drums are punchy and each instrument has their own space to fill. YES
  23. Hmm odd intro, it almost feels like the initial arp intro leads into a different song. That's one small oddity though compared to the rest of the song which combines EDM elements with some things like trombones and accordions, for interesting and funny results. This track is a pretty fun listen for sure, with all the timing changes and silly instrumentation. Production is clean and source usage is good, so I have no problems with this going up. YES
  24. Ah Latin American music, something I am very familiar with. One of my pet peeves is that when someone tries to make a remix labeling it as salsa, cumbia or any other latin american genre, then they add some rhythm that's nothing like the real thing, but that would pass as one of those genres to a casual listener from outside LAN. So that being said I think you nailed the cumbia rhythm pretty closely, with all the right tambora and guarachaca (or guira) beats. It does make the arrangement as a whole feel a bit static, as that's the nature of these rhythms that are meant for people to dance, but there's enough melodic content to make up for it. I feel like adding tons of melodic content would break the illusion a bit for me, so what's there is enough. I think the adaptation and the interpretation are enough to bring this up to the front page for me, though I can understand if some people will feel it's too static. I think the pro's balance out that aspect and makes for a pretty enjoyable arrangement. YES