At 11/6/14 04:31 PM, PeterSatera wrote:
Now that the winners have been announces I think i'd like to bring up this system and how imo doesn't really work...
Hi Peter. You brought up some nice points, and although I am not mentioned specifically, I feel some of the points were more directed in my direction contextually, so I'd like to briefly give some explanations and try to open further dialogue on what you and everyone else think would work better in the future.
When opinions are making such an impact due to the choice of genre then that's unfair. To be honest, and don't take this wrong Sam, but why does your approach to composition even be considered when scoring someone else's track? Your scoring their track, not how you would have done it or step, or anyone. It seems we're no longer listening and instead these tracks are analytically broken down. I understand why you are all probably doing it, but there's a reasons why this just doesnt work.
So all in all, the judging of those who score lower make more impact, and the personal experience of yourselves should never impact on how a track is judged. That's not being impartial.
There is continued mention of "personal experience" and how much it impacts the judgement. Judgement is defined as "the act or process of forming an opinion or making a decision after careful thought : the act of judging something or someone". It is essential and logical to apply personal experience to judging. If I didn't use my personal experience of how music works, my judgement would be "sounds good, no idea... 10/10?". Personal taste, on the other hand, has no place here.
Listening IS analytically breaking down. Even someone who knows nothing about music is still feeling a beat, feeling tension and release, and experiencing emotions.
Then the fact tracks are categorized like an equation due to the judges experience, is just off the wall bonkers. Who cares how they made it and if it's not what you want, or if you think they can do better. That's not what these tracks should be judged on. And this isn't a court case. Contestants aren't guilty or not guilty. So why does what someone else think make an impact on what you think?
:Some of you might not be, but I'm left wondering how many of you sit back and just listen to it and put your own expertise and creation process out the window, because when it comes to it. Music isn't created for people who create music. It's made for everyone.
I'd tend to disagree. This contest is a contest for musicians, by musicians. If this were a "popular music contest", yes, I would completely agree, but in this contest, all contestants are FULLY aware that they are being judged by their peers, fellow musicians. It's not just my choice to be critical and examine more than just the surface layer, it's our entire job as judges. As any creative living on their work is well aware, audience is an extremely important consideration.
For something like originality or lack of a complex composition could be things the track is not designed to do. Some of the tracks aren't made to be the most original thing. Sometimes they're made to be in a niche and fit within a scope of sound that is familiar and connects to other orgins - yet their punished for it. Sometimes a composition which is simple and repetitive can be the must fulfilling sound because you sink into it. Why does instrument complexity matter? Does a large palette really make a better one?
I think there is a misconception that "originality" is some kind of crazy artsy fartsy thing. It's not. Originality in the context of music is taking someone elses' ideas, recombining them, and adding your own touches (in fact, that's how ALL tonal music works, there are virtually no exclusions). Depending on how much effort one puts into recombining different elements, they will create a more original sound. Originality is not just about making your own sound. It's about how you say things in your music. In cinematic music, above all, it is MOST important that something is said or emotions are expressed, and being able to play around with existing ideas to get there (like using leitmotifs) is very valuable.
I took care to take considerations of the ideals of each genre as to what the term "complexity" or "originality" implied under them. "Complex" composition in a jazz piece might be using all sorts of crazy modal theory, while in cinematic, it might be using modulations or contrapuntal, evolving, interesting ostinatos between two families.
On simplicity; of course a track can be simple, but simple doesn't mean one can get away with copy and paste galore. I'd rather (and often did) allot more composition points to a simple track that showed a great deal of detail and craft versus a complex-sounding track that shows little attention to detail/effort.
On palette, contrast, craft, and diversity; as these are, admittedly, show pieces made to flex your compositional and production muscles in front of the judges, those pieces that were impressive in craft, expression, or detail of course received higher scores. Even as a purely emotional listener, this same principle applies- diverse, contrasting music is interesting to listen to. Music with modulations, expression, counterpoint, syncopations, ostinati, odd time signatures, yada yada ya is interesting for a listener, no matter how little they know because those are taking elements from the common language and adding your own touches, or at the very least, playing around with them.
Something I see a lot is when a judge says, not just from this NGADM but from last ones saying it's " Generic Hollywood". Like it's a bad thing! There's a reason why directors go to film scorers who can produce a specific sound that they crave. Yet nope, not good enough for NG's. It seems the genres that some Judges who don't work in did better than those who are close to certain genres, but it shouldn't matter. It shouldn't matter at all.
The genre is completely relevant in the context of the individual piece, however... unless you've come up with a way to apply the exact same criteria to a dubstep track as a classical one. There are certain expectations of genres and styles, certain "ideals", and "rules". When I was in doubt about how to approach a piece in an unfamiliar style, I consulted a producer/composer who was more familiar with those expectations and incorporated their take with mine.
All this breaking a track up to justify a score is bonkers. It's a piece of original music.
Yes, it is. I am slightly surprised people were so critical of my scores that I actually had to do that. However, all the feedback on breaking down the score until now has been completely positive, so I have kept it up.
My point is these scoring systems you are working to, are helpful, but it seems they are depended on.
Well I certainly don't want people to think that way. The criteria I chose for my scoring system are universal to all music, and, in my opinion, very straightforward. To me it seems obvious what the criteria represent for a genre and I feel that anyone who puts in their all, barring major issues or malfunctions, will not have much trouble meeting all the criteria in full, and that
Personally the whole out of 10 with decimal points is destructive I find because you're really doing it out of 100.
I see no problem with breaking down a score, it's more accurate. More accuracy can only help you.
If you had more judges, I'm talking 10-20, anonymous submitting, and they had a scoring system of 1-5 stars you would find the scoring system becomes much fairer, because the weight of each judge is less and the fluctuation in which they can score in is tighter too.
I like this idea, except seeing how much work it is for Step and Erik now with just five or so, I really don't know if it would be fair. Instead, I'd recommend using an open voting system where everyone can vote, such as that used with the NGMT or the NGWSC.