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Focused Noise (NGADM '12)

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File Info
9.2 MB
4 min 1 sec
4.33 / 5.00

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Rated 4.33 / 5 stars
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1,420 Plays | 78 Downloads
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Metal, Rock - Heavy Metal

Author Comments

Well, I entered the NGADM this year, not expecting to actually make it, only to find out that out of 192 auditions I was one of the 32 that made it!

So, here's my entry for Round 1, wish me luck! There's a lot of good competition and I honestly don't expect to make it far, but I'll give it my best shot! I've been working on this song ever since I found out I was in, and a lot of time went into mixing/mastering (I still have a headache from it all :S)

Hope you like it! Its probably not my most original song, but I tried to make it my most professional (minus the last minute solo, I honestly don't have the energy to try and master another one :P)

**Update** 15/08/12 1:06 AM
Re-adjusted the levels, brought the drums up a little and evened everything out a bit.



Rated 4 / 5 stars September 14, 2012

I'd write more, more the other NGADM judges have covered pretty much what I wanted to say in more detail as well. I really liked rocking out to this song. The fact there was no vocals was only a MINOR drawback though. Woo! Yeah! \m/ >_<\m/


Rated 3 / 5 stars August 24, 2012

\m/ (>.<) \m/

Being a metalhead myself, I was very pleased to see a few people enter the contest with metal.
I really like the riffing you got going on in here. The guitar tone is crisp and clean, and of course... heavy as fuck. It was well played, and the mixing overall I found was pretty damn good.
I was also quite impressed with the change up at 0:53, while abrupt, it didn't sound horrifically out of place, which is something I, myself, struggle a lot with. In fact, I didn't find any of the transitions to be overly jarring, which I have to give you kudos for.
And that solo, very well played, and I was really impressed at how you balanced a shreddy feel with a more melodic and soulful lead in as opposed to giving the solo a single identity.

Now for my complaints... No denying it... this was horribly repetitive. While the riffing was pretty awesome, this sounds like it was meant for vocals. Because without vocals, the repetitiveness of the song is amplified and becomes very noticeable later in the song. The solo does managed to break that up a bit, but underneath, there really wasn't much new going on. And really, that's my biggest complaint.
And if I'm not crazy, I'm pretty sure I heard a fudged note or two in the solo, but I can't really hold that against you because it didn't in any way take away from the overall song.

Overall, this was pretty enjoyable to listen to, great riffing, awesome solo, but it suffered pretty badly from repetition. Got a 6/10 from me.

Demon-Slayer12 responds:

Thanks for your review, I'll probably finish the song some day with vocals and make it a deadly live song. If this was played at a show with the right band members, it would probably make some heads bang haha


Rated 3.5 / 5 stars August 19, 2012

This is an NGADM Round 1 Review.


I'm going to hand it to you, you really wanted to make a statement, being one of the few metal contenders for this NGADM, haha. It sounds like you've got a tonne of experience writing metal (and slaying demons) since it shows a lot in this track.

The track already sounds really meaty and mighty right off the bat, with those guitar chords at the beginning. When I heard them I instantly knew this had very good mixing. Maybe the low end on the guitar was a bit much, but that just might be my god-awful Beats soundcard fluffing up my audio with its horrible bass boosters. Anyway, not only do the guitars sound powerful but so do the drums. Hearing weak drums in metal is a huge pet-peeve of mine, and for me these are metal drums done right. Mastering-wise, you've pretty much nailed it. Nothing is sounding over-compressed and yet nothing is clipping. Fantastic guitar-playing too.

Technicalities aside, this has some glaring problems. You've got some SWEET riffs, but you focus way too much on thrashing the hell out of that guitar and too little on making creative, memorable melodies. Most of the track is the rhythm guitar strumming at crazy quick speeds, and there isn't much to keep me interested. Your problem isn't the lack of vocals (although vocals will help) but it's a lack of melody. The only melodies that catch one's attention come in at 0:51 (incredibly catchy riff right there) and during the guitar solo (which was a bit too all-over-the-place composition-wise for it to deserve much merit from me).

To top that, some of your transitions are unfortunately bad. I'm referring to 0:51 and 2:31. They just feel too abrupt and odd. On a relevant note, the intro was good but the ending just stops. There isn't any semblance of an approach to an ending, it just decides 'right, I'm done now' and stops. I think all of these compositional issues are things that you need to watch out for, because composition seems to be your opponent's strong point this round and could easily be your opponent's strong point in later rounds.

All in all, you've made an extremely heavy and well-mixed track here, but without some memorable melodies and/or vocals, this can get pretty uninteresting, which is a shame, because you're crazy good at what you do and the fact that the composition is lacking here is really bringing down the song's potential. In any case, great work!



Demon-Slayer12 responds:

I agree, I wrote some awesome riffs, but then I brainfarted after that haha. I tried to spice things up a little with some octaves on the second riff, and a guitar solo towards the end. But, I knew that still wasn't very creative, yet I figured it was better than just the riffs. I spent most of my time mixing and mastering, and mastering being a new thing for me. If you go through all of my songs I guarantee you won't find anything that sounds clearer. So, I'll take that into the next round, but I'll at least try to be more creative with the song structure. Thanks for the detailed review, I wish more reviews could be like that, it really helps an artist to improve!


Rated 3 / 5 stars August 19, 2012

Here is your personal review for your round 1 submission! Remember that the score might be a little lower than I would normally give, I'm being a tad harsher than I'd normally be for the NGADM.

The Good:
-Your guitar playing is pretty nice.
-Holy crap the compression is insane, and there's no clipping. Nice!

The Not-So-Good: Sorry for having more to say on this, the song certainly isn't badly made. There's just more I can talk about here!
-Just about all of your transitions are awkward and off-beat, I'm sorry to say. They're quite sudden and jarring.
-You are thrashing that guitar so hard that it's about to die. And you don't really stop at all throughout the whole song.
-This desperately needs a change in feel and idea. The whole thing could be condensed into about 2-3 minutes and sound just as good.
-No instruments other than guitars and drums? I am disappointed at this.

Overall: It's well-made, but not too well-done overall. You've essentially taken the guitar and whacked it for 4 minutes with a flail and mace, then added distortion and called it done. At least, that's kinda what it sounds like. Would be great if it had variation. Overall, I'm giving this a 6.5/10.

Demon-Slayer12 responds:

You're right man, these aren't my most original riffs I must say. And I probably should made it about 2 min, although I don't find 4 min long anymore. I listen to a lot of progressive music, where songs are never less than 5 min haha, and I love listening to 20 min songs. But, I agree, this is my most polished recording, but least interesting. But how can you not snap your neck headbanging to riff at 2:08? I honestly think that this song would be an awesome metal song with vocals. You have to be a metalhead to really appreciate what I do. I can't stand electronic music, so the only other instruments I would add other than guitar or bass (there was a bass track on there), are string synths or choir ahs. I do like some keyboards if it fits with the music, however I'm not great at playing keyboards haha. I know the transitions are a bit weird, but I did that on purpose. I've listened to many songs and thought there was weird stuff, but after listening a few times it made more sense, but that being more progressive music obviously haha. Thanks for taking the time to do a thorough review, cheers!


Rated 3 / 5 stars August 19, 2012

First off (I'm posting this to everyone): Note that the scores might be a bit lower than what's typical for NG reviews - no one should expect a 10/10 unless their entry was absolutely incredible.


These guitars, they are solid. If there's anything to be said about the song, it's that. Tight, clear playing, yet with a huge stereo width throughout. The intro riff and the bassline that follows along make for a very good first impression and wow-factor. I'm assuming there IS a bass guitar since there's a prominent low end - it blends perfectly with the guitars to create the impression of one single, monstrously badass guitar. The drums are nice too... at a high enough volume. It should be possible to get a meatier kick and a thicker snare and keep the mix as clear as it currently is. The hihats and cymbals sound fine, but as with the other drums, hardly anything exciting is done with them - it's straight eight notes and occasional sixteenth note fills.

And beneath the delicious layer of thick guitars, the song is lacking in many respects. The composition is the most striking one. The song never takes a break, it keeps going with a fixed gear, the intensity plateaus from the first moment - and at 4:00 it makes for an absolutely exhausting listen. Even before a minute has passed I notice a sense of fatigue. Each section is one short riff, repeated some power of two (2, 4, 8 etc) times, with some minor variation at the end at the most predictable places. This riff is backed by a suitably busy drum part, a bassline that copies the riff (and never does anything else ever), and occasionally another track of a wailing guitar on top.

...that's it. Some keyboard sounds would be a nice addition, some sound effects, some clean guitar, some anything! Something that creates some contrast and lets the brutality of the guitars really shine instead of constantly blasting the ears and boring the mind of the listener for 2 and a half minutes. After which a much needed melodic solo is introduced. And yet, it sounds very much like it's put there in the end as an afterthought. It's just there, between two riffs, being played over a riff copypasted from 0:52. It's a positive addition to the song, but not by much.

6 points for sounds and instrumentation.
6 points for composition and melody/harmony.
6 points for theme/originality/other things that might impress.

Overall impression: 6.0

(hey, at least you get the most metal combination of scores)

Demon-Slayer12 responds:

Thanks for the detailed review! And I can agree on pretty much everything you said. The composition is pretty boring, and the solos were pretty much an afterthought. I wanted to make an epic track, but I epically failed haha. I didn't think I'd even get past the first round anyway, so to actually make it surprised me. At least I got a 666 from you haha, and I'll try harder next time to write something a bit more creative!