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Mar 17, 2013 | 9:10 AM EDT
File Info
5 MB
2 min 12 sec
4.55 / 5.00

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Rated 4.55 / 5 stars
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Author Comments

Newgrounds is a great place to find new contacts. So this happened to me when I came across the composition "Mayhem Market" by Nick Standing aka Jabun who appeared to be quite a talented guitarist. He gladly accepted my offer to work on a joint project and after a week of collaboration we are happy to introduce to you "Mountains of Gold". Working on this piece was a new experience for both of us and a whole lot of fun. We hope we've produced something that'll give you as much joy listening as we had making it!

DAW: Fl Studio 10
Libraries: EWQLSO: Strings, Percussion, Brass, Woodwinds; Stormdrum
Icon: based on the photo by Leo Reynolds tos/lwr/199465388/sizes/o /in/photostream/



Rated 5 / 5 stars

Astounding, I had grown so used to Newgrounds audio being completely techno, electronic, house, etc. Then this comes along and cuts down my expectations with remarkable string work. The feeling of adventure is just so powerful that I would go as far as to say that it would belong in The Lord of the Rings. Thank you so much for sharing.

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xIIInon responds:

Actually, I have to disagree on the point of Newgrounds being more about electronic music. I've been here for what seems like a couple of months and I already know there are some really great orchestrators. But maybe it's just my perception :) Thank you for reviewing, it means a lot for me and Nick!


Rated 5 / 5 stars

This is crazy GOOD!!!!

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Rated 5 / 5 stars

Damn damn damn damn DAMN. That was unexpected. Honestly, I saw your post in the Audio Forum about Irish/Celtic music and when I saw that you added that picture to your forum post, without any disrespect of course, the first thought that came to my mind was something like "oh look, here comes another bad musician who thinks that because he has nice-looking artwork for his song it means it's actually any good", because we get a lot of people like that. Yeah well, shame on me for being so judgemental; your song is actually really good!

Lovely guitar playing, man. I'm a big fan of this kind of fast-paced acoustic guitar playing and like to use it a lot in my music. Jabun did a wonderful job over here, and you did just as good of a job at incorporating the guitar into the rest of the track. That guitar gives loads of energy to the track. Hell, I would've liked even MORE guitar. As much as I love all the fantastic orchestral instruments, that guitar adds a great flair to the piece and it's something I would certainly give more of the spotlight to if I were you.

The composition is fantastic; one of the best things about this track, for sure. I don't know if you were the one in charge of all of the composition or Jabun helped out with it too, but whoever contributed to that composition did one hell of a good job. The melodies, like the guitar, are quick and extremely fun to listen to. At some points like at 1:13 it felt like the really quick notes were starting to become a bit much and it began getting kinda tiring but then SWEET JESUS, 1:30 is so wonderfully powerful that I wouldn't even care if the worst melody in history was playing before it.

Needless to say, you've got some very high-quality instruments over here. It is quite hard to fault East/West I guess! The strings in particular are great, but even though it says there are woodwinds in this track, I can't really hear any woodwinds (except maybe 1:28?), but they would work exceptionally well in a track like this, and continue with the subtle Celtic vibe this track has. The brass wasn't exactly the star of the show over here, but it was used very well. You've got to love the things you do with it, like the low brass notes at around 1:00 and the spectacular brass staccatos at parts like 1:46. The brass adds a good amount of power to the track. And like I mentioned above, the guitar is amazing.

The transitions are entirely nailed. Transitions like the ones at 0:17 (might want to make this one a bit more powerful), 0:55 and 1:28 are what I like to hear in songs like this. Those three transitions were the ones that stood out for me but in all honesty each transition was smooth and transferred the song to the next section seamlessly. What also helps, I feel, is that guitar that consistently plays fast chords for pretty much all of the track; the fact that it's always there in the background to keep the energy up to standard helps to glue the song together.

Now for the mixing, about which I have some complaints to mention. Let me get some clarifications out of the way first; your mix is great. Awesome clarity, everything is loud, fantastic EQing, etc. I think there are a few issues, though. Sometimes the strings' melodies get lost in the energy of the track and become hard to follow, mainly at 1:04. Also, throw some more reverberation on the cymbal roll at 1:39, man... in fact all of the cymbal rolls could do with a bit more reverb. The lack of reverb on 1:39's cymbal makes it sound almost wimpy. Make sure you add high-end reverb though, because low-end reverb might just mud everything up.

Something that has to do with the mix is a complaint I have about the percussion. Most of the energy came from the guitar and while the percussion was certainly high-quality, it has SO much more potential. I've noticed a significant lack of powerful low end in this track, since most of what I can hear from your percussion is the hit that comes in at 0:13 (which might be a bit too loud, may I add), the cymbals, and a poor bass drum almost suffocated by all the other instruments. Try killing some of the low end of the guitar and leaving some space for more bass drums to shine, to give this song a bit more of a low-end rumble.

If you're using Stormdrum 1, try adding some of the hits from the Big Hits patch, or from the Godzilla Hits/Earthquake Ensemble if you're using Stormdrum 2. You can try adding some of Stormdrum's toms as well if you think you can mix them in well, since I recently found out how badass they are.

The structure is rock solid. You don't exactly have any motifs that you latch on to but this song still feels like a unified listening experience since you keep a relatively unchanging set of instruments and have such smooth transitions. Not only that, but you've got a brilliant introduction that sets the mood for the song flawlessly, and then you lead up perfectly to the ending which, by the way, is an incredibly satisfying way of ending the song.

In conclusion, despite being a newcomer to Newgrounds, you've certainly made a good first impression. I'm highly impressed with this and I wish you the best of luck in your future endeavours! Keep it up, man.


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xIIInon responds:

Oh my! Such a detailed review was also unexpected! You know, you're actually helping a lot, because unfortunately very few people would tell what needs to be fixed or improved while you've pinpointed the most noticeable flaws and I can't disagree about them. I'm going to try and do what you suggested. I've never used much reverb for the cymbals and now I know why they tend to sound "wimpy", the lack of the drums' lower frequencies also occurred to me but I was just afraid of bringing too much unnecessary noise.
Apart from recording the guitar (which wasn't easy in some of the passages) Jabun also helped a lot with advice. He's great to work with, I mean it.
Speaking of woodwinds, they mostly play in unison with the strings in the climax part but yes, 1:28 was the case as well.
I'll take everything you said into account and re-upload the audio in the near future!
Again, thanks for such an awesome and useful commentary! We think we haven't yet seen a review that long on Newgrounds!


Rated 5 / 5 stars

Wow l am really stunned by the intregration of guitars in this marvelous orchestral piece. The quality of whole piece is next to the film score level and you both have wonderfuly played your parts. I have no complains. Looking towards more of such quality stuff. Keep up the good work

xIIInon responds:

We will! Thank you for your support, Emid!


Rated 4.5 / 5 stars

I really like the style but something is still missing in this but at end i found the missing part ;)

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