Hello! This is a review for the NGUAC competition.
I've gone over one or two general categories of issues specific to your song, and one section of things I think also deserve complimenting. I prefer being very direct with my critique, none of it is meant to offend. Thank you for your understanding!
- I am, in fact, going to complain on volume. But, rather than just complaining about it, let's talk about why it's a problem rather than just saying "it doesn't sound good". The initial and relatively obvious issue is that having music too loud can actually permanently damage your ears, which... is obviously bad. But secondly, you're exporting to mp3 or some other compressed audio format to share with other people most of the time. Uncompressed audio files can handle volume above 0dB, but mp3 typically cuts off data at that point, resulting in added distortion and importantly loss of clarity. Even in harsh noise music like this, you typically want to be in control of that noise rather than letting it distort in potentially the wrong way through lossy compression. Particularly high and low frequencies are also distorted or reduced from this effect, even in the highest quality mp3 files. Oh, and most platforms will reduce the volume so it peaks at -1.0dB and if you aren't mastering with that in mind, you'll find your track ends up quieter than intended anyway.
- So, let's say you're going to master something to be really loud and harsh, like this. That's fine. However, an important point to maintain awareness of is the concept of contrast and variation. You even do have variation in this track, giving contrast between sections. However, if everything is harsh noise all the time, the listener won't have as much of a frame of reference to really appreciate it. This is actually the basis behind breakdowns in music, to give the listener a moment of rest and allow them to process the sound they just experienced before pulling them back into the more intense section. As it is, you have very intense sections to the music, but extremely minimal space for listeners to take a moment and understand and process.
Compliments to the Composer:
- I'm really surprised that your drums are so clear through all the noise here, and a lot of your bass modulation is pretty good. It can get painful to listen to, but I appreciate the effort you took to create the sounds here. Like I said, you also clearly have variation, which is a good step above a lot of music I see people first making!
Final score: 1