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KyleJCrb

OCRA-0013 - Tales: Summoning of Spirits

388 posts in this topic

To be honest for just a second, I'd say you guys could have done well to tighten up the quality control on this album overall. There are a lot of great tracks, but there are some (and I won't point fingers) that are much more... unbalanced. They take away from the experience as a whole.

But on the whole... I was pleased with the final product. You guys did good.

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To be honest for just a second, I'd say you guys could have done well to tighten up the quality control on this album overall. There are a lot of great tracks, but there are some (and I won't point fingers) that are much more... unbalanced. They take away from the experience as a whole.

But on the whole... I was pleased with the final product. You guys did good.

That's the problem with the quantity over quality outlook a lot of people seem to have these days when starting projects. This could have very well been cut down to one disc of really good material. The production varies so much from song to song that it just seems like a DoD and not a cohesive album. Still, there's a couple great tracks in here.

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yeah actually I think there is only one great track and it is in the bonus section and too bad it was never finished!

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yeah actually I think there is only one great track and it is in the bonus section and too bad it was never finished!

Oh...snap?

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To be honest for just a second, I'd say you guys could have done well to tighten up the quality control on this album overall. There are a lot of great tracks, but there are some (and I won't point fingers) that are much more... unbalanced. They take away from the experience as a whole.

But on the whole... I was pleased with the final product. You guys did good.

There were some people who just stopped working on their tracks after they had it "finished" even though there may have been room for improvement. Perhaps some of these may be the ones you would point fingers at. Not sure which ones you're talking about, compared to who ended up stopping their progress on tracks.

That's the problem with the quantity over quality outlook a lot of people seem to have these days when starting projects. This could have very well been cut down to one disc of really good material. The production varies so much from song to song that it just seems like a DoD and not a cohesive album. Still, there's a couple great tracks in here.

The Tales project certainly shoots other OCR remix projects out of the water (such as VotL and CS), because there was some sort of quality control, and people were kicked for sucking.

I agree that the project doesn't really sound like one cohesive project because of all the styles (disco, trance, omfg guitarrrrzzzzz, orchestral, etc), but had they tried to go with just one style, then the project would have only appealed to a few people who like the chosen style. With the various styles, it allows more people to enjoy the project (in full or part) as well as introduces some people to styles they may not normally enjoy. So, I think the various styles are more of a positive factor than a negative one.

I think you're all smelly. Especially that Kyle person.

I just took a whiff...he is.

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After a short break, here are more comments. Thanks for the feedback on feedback people, it's really great to know that you appreciate it, especially as it probably isn't exactly flattering all the way. :] I do my best to be constructive!

Disc 2, track 4: Cold Memory

Very cool atmosphere here in this song.. (yes, that was a lame pun). I like this track, but I'd like to like it more. Initially I didn't - the bad had me not hear the good in the song, before I started listening more closely.

The fade-in, with the choir, is sort of choppy/grainy, but I really like that effect - I wish there was more of that throughout the piece!

The high strings and the piano are way too forte from the start. I think the feel of this songs would be absolutely amazing if there was more dynamic "playing" on those instruments. It should grow, not start at 9 or 10. I don't like the piano chord at 00:39. It just doesn't fit with the other instruments. Otherwise the writing is good, but the lack of dynamics and that one chord makes it sound worse than it is. I like the harp in the background, with the high notes on the piano there's the icicly feel.

00:53-01:16 sounds absolutely gorgeous. Wouldn't change a thing. The change at 01:12, beautiful. I don't like how the same strings figure repeats the next two bars, but that's more because it's the same velocity than that it's the same notes - the same figure played more lightly might sound quite cool - slightly varying the melody might still be better. I like the change underneath. I also like the low strings playing that continuous pulse in the background.

The next section that begins has a problem: it goes fuller, louder - but the instruments are already playing with pretty loud touch, so when more is added, it gets crowded. While I say that I must also say I like the overall sound here. Alas, there are note choices that don't sound good to me. Around 01:26 the low strings, now playing longer notes (and sounding mighty good) touch a note out of scale I think. 01:30 something is again garbled in the lower register.. hmm, I think that's it actually, but again just those two points, and the lack of dynamics make it sound worse than it was.

Starting at 01:46 there are some cymbal runs (and water sounds?), they sound really good and evoke an image of chlling, icy water. A fantastic effect. 01:48 the low strings stay in place.. the dissonance is interesting, I like how it anchors itself around that one note. 01:53 sounds bad to me though, but overall 01:42-02:23, while dissonant and dense, works, especially as it sort of unwinds towards the end. It reminds me of some expressionistic string pieces I've heard.

Still I'd love more use of dynamics here. 02:24-02:36 is good in the arrangement side, but again and throughout the forte feel on the instruments in the major gripe. 02:35 there's a high piano note that sounds totally out of the picture. I really like how the strings and piano support each other at 02:36-02:42. I like the icy tuned percussion -like synth sound towards the end. The fadeout feels pretty shoddy - overall the writing on the ending sounds loose, although there's strong hinting at a corgeous melody on the piano at 03:09-03:14 - there's all the potential of a solid ending based on that.

I think playing orchestral samples at a continuous forte can work, but I really feel this style would benefit from a different approach with them - it's definitely worth investigating!

Disc 2, track 5: Simplified Design

Change of pace, yeah. The intro's quite tasty. I like how the drums and rhythm guitars/bass sound. The drums sound dry and acoustic, but there's this electronic edge on the guitars. I'm surely not far off the mark if I say I'm reminded of System of a Down.

01:50 piano is quite out of tune, I don't like the effect. Love the cowbell and horns at 02:47.. Hmm, no wonder the bass sounded electronic! :) I quite like the fake sound. I don't enjoy the choppy strings. They sound tacked on. Similarly with the harp, it sounds so separate from the backing. The harp blends in in the next section though, starting at 03:15, this section is quite nice!

Overall, I can't help but think that there's some problems with the pacing of the piece - it feels long, which is something even a long piece shouldn't feel like. There are bits that just plain don't work for me - the piano, and the choppy strings. I think this one could lose a minute or so and work much better. There's a lot of good in this track, but it doesn't make me want to play it again immediately even though the potential is clearly there with all the delicious riffing going on.

cheers!

--Eino

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Not to stir up dramaz, but I do tend to agree that QC seemed a little lax on a lot of the tracks. I know that things have changed a lot at OCR in the last 5 years, so it's to be expected, but the older tracks had plenty of time to get updated as the mixers improved.

I know Cpac is the man, but he really should have fixed up the recently rejected Dark Corner, which I found to be downright embarrassing in spots. It's obvious that it's a super old track of his, and I can appreciate that; I have tracks that are probably a lot more recent of my own that are equally painful to listen to. But it's clear he had the time, so why not make something that really shows OCR off well to potential newcomers?

I do agree that there is about 1 disc of exceptional material on here, 2 discs more of decent but possible-to-improve tracks, and 1 disc worth that definitely should have been reworked or rejected.

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CPac actually did express some interest in reworking his tracks, but it never happened, so I kept what he had.

And a number of tracks actually did see much rework at later stages. Maybe more of them should've been, but we ran out of time.

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This is just critique for next time.

What? More years of Kyle & Lea on my back? I don't know if I can take it ;)

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Not to stir up dramaz, but I do tend to agree that QC seemed a little lax on a lot of the tracks. I know that things have changed a lot at OCR in the last 5 years, so it's to be expected, but the older tracks had plenty of time to get updated as the mixers improved.

Nah, your comment was much appreciated. Although, even though I take pride in all my contributions in this project, I tend to be prouder with my Symphonia tracks moreso than those on the Phantasia side, even though the former were made earlier. :lol:

On the contrary, I actually grew to like "Dark Corner" the more I listened to it (though, I think CPac's best work on the project is "This Fate" personally). But I do agree that its liberal approach would make it hard to adjust to potential inspiring remixers, though this definitely isn't the most extreme case of which I've seen around the remixing scene.

The more awkward thing is that when looking around on the web to see which tracks on the project were actually at fault, as usually brought up in project releases at such a scale like this, criticisms like this are actually harder to find than all the appraisal - much against what happened with Project Chaos when fingers were pointed all over the place (bringing that up because I was involved in that too). So when you get sparse comments regarding imbalance in QC, the staff and musicians don't know who could have stepped up their game so much more until they find out through the constructive feedback received.

At any rate, we appreciate all comments on board regardless of feeling :)

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Dark Corner is definitely one of the weakest tracks I ever did, so no worries. It has some redeeming qualities, but overall, I just went way overboard.

So it's OK. Go listen to "This Fate" now :)

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Got through discs 1 & 2 - great stuff so far. There was much more cohesiveness than I was expecting in terms of arrangement, a lot of guitars, piano, and strings. (On a related note, I couldn't see any song I've made fitting into this album at all! :-P But maybe discs 3 & 4 hold more songs of my style.)

So nice sequencing thus far. I might do a track-by-track review in this thread when I'm done.

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Some of my older stuff was a pain to try to rework. Cold Memory in particular, It was actually a lot more dynamic, & quite a bit quieter, which is what I intended it to be. I had to up the volume for it to fit with the rest of the tracks, so, that's probably why it sounds fuller than it was.

My favorite solo track from this is Standing up, as it's more current with what I can do now, as well as different than a lot of stuff I usually do.

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Dark Corner is definitely one of the weakest tracks I ever did, so no worries. It has some redeeming qualities, but overall, I just went way overboard.

Sorry for submitting it then, but I've honestly always thought it was a good track. Oh well.

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I WILL NEVER EVER EVER EVER TOUCH STANDING THE PAIN AGAIN!!!!!!!!1111

Really, in defense of the quality of tracks... Take a look at my Pain Withstanding song, and then listen to Altar Perception, a track I started a year later. I spent hours trying to "improve" on Pain Withstanding, and you can ask Kyle, even though I pretty much finished it within the first month, I kept working on it over and over, off and on for about a year... And as much work I put into that song (mostly in instrument choice and mixing as well as just trying to get it to goddamn load and not glitch out on me) I still to this day, hate hate hate hate it, and think it's an awful representation of my skill levels now.

BUT I DON'T FRIGGIN' CARE!

I may not like Pain Withstanding, hell a lot of people might not, but if someone does, then that's enough for me, and at one point, I did like it. It's a song that no one claimed on the project, that wasn't even listed as a choice, and I decided to do because I liked the original... And hopefully someone who likes the original as much as I do, will be able to appreciate it. If not, they can go to the next track, or the 50 others to choose from.

In other words, you can't always push for a re-working of a song on someone saying it "could" have happened as the obvious choice. Easier said than done, every time. Sometimes a musician needs to just move on and do something else, otherwise you'll be beating a dead horse. And sometimes people eventually do come back to old music and redo it... But this was a project, and it has many more factors to it than just the individual's personal growth and motivation to redo a song.

Quality over Quantity? Well why not both? AFAIK, there's plenty of quality on SoS for a community such as this... And many different genres to wet anyone's taste buds. And the ratio is far better than most people expected from what I've read.

I mean, you guys are gonna list your favorite 12 tracks and say "THESE ARE THE BEST TRACKS YOU SHOULD HAVE CUT THE REST!"? Well I bet your favorite 12 are gonna differ from the next guy's.

I think Kyle's (and Lea's) priorities with this project were spot on. He worked with people in the community, got an incredible amount of songs done, and as a result, we get a bunch of songs that span five billion years in their creation, as this grew and the musicians within it as well. He didn't cut tracks just because they were old, because his priority was to get the project done and keep the ball rolling, which amazingly enough, he did.

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So nice sequencing thus far. I might do a track-by-track review in this thread when I'm done.

I've mostly done track-by-track listening, but from the couple of complete listens, the sequencing seems pretty succesful despite the many different styles. Cold Memory, it seems then, may have been a victim in the process though!

--Eino

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Got through discs 1 & 2 - great stuff so far. There was much more cohesiveness than I was expecting in terms of arrangement, a lot of guitars, piano, and strings. (On a related note, I couldn't see any song I've made fitting into this album at all! :-P But maybe discs 3 & 4 hold more songs of my style.)

So nice sequencing thus far. I might do a track-by-track review in this thread when I'm done.

Thanks.

That would be awesome :)

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I may not like Pain Withstanding, hell a lot of people might not, but if someone does, then that's enough for me, and at one point, I did like it. It's a song that no one claimed on the project, that wasn't even listed as a choice, and I decided to do because I liked the original... And hopefully someone who likes the original as much as I do, will be able to appreciate it. If not, they can go to the next track, or the 50 others to choose from.

I actually much prefer Pain Withstanding to Altar Perception.

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