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The Meaning of Life Is Paradox

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Author Comments

The grass is always greener.

I may have deleted what I originally posted here but this work deserves some back story. I wrote it when I was living in Oakland California, off 13th and Webster. I was listening to a ton of Herbie Hancock and all my favorite DNB producers were making dubstep. I had an Akai Mini to write on. I also had a Korg M1 with no way to hook it up to my demented Apple/Tiger computer so I had to USB the Akai.

The Akai Mini only has two octaves to write with but an octave button to change octaves with. Hence the octave jumping chord progression. Also, the solos only range within two octaves. It's a fun music limitation. This period continues to influence my piano playing today. I just wish I could write happy like this all the time.

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Hey, I saw your post in the nguac thread and decided to leave a review.

I think these competitions should be seen as opportunities to gain exposure, motivate yourself to make more and better music, and indeed, have fun. Judge biases will be a major factor in every competition - it's inevitable and one will feel bitter much of the time without accepting that fact. I've had the same reaction as you in the past.

On to the actual review...

There are some nice lines of music in here. The percussion is solid, there are some interesting sets of chords, there's some cool synth design, etc. But I'm afraid I do not see how these lines of music work together to create a cohesive message - what is the purpose of the song? It feels fairly repetitive, and the meat of the track is not that stimulating for the aforementioned reason.

The piano library is clearly low quality, and piano keys aren't usually slammed like that. It's not pleasant to listen to sound-design-wise.

The mix is fatiguing to listen to. If you EQ certain instruments, and perhaps the master channel, around the 3-4k range, you could remove some unpleasant frequencies. I also suggest using a dynamic EQ on the piano to control low-mid resonances.

I know the score I gave you isn't pleasant to receive, but I wanted you to know that I did recognize some positive qualities of your track. From my own musical journey, I've found that improvement is not a linear process at all; it's usually revelations about music composition that lead to abrupt, drastic improvements. I'm saying this because I believe that with a bit of studying (and maybe making a small investment into a proper sample library), you can see significant improvement quickly.

Another thing: unlike some other judges, I did not factor industry standards into my judging. I don't care much about that.

I hope to see you return to future competitions, but I'll understand if you don't.

i am totally standing on my bed windmilling to this right now

Quarl responds:

Not gonna lie. I saw someone do that once in Half Moon Bay. You haven't lived until you've seen someone spin their dick like a champ.


Credits & Info


4.25 / 5.00

Aug 10, 2013
6:23 PM EDT
File Info
3.6 MB
3 min 55 sec

Licensing Terms

You are free to copy, distribute and transmit this work under the following conditions:

You must give credit to the artist.
You may not use this work for commercial purposes. *
No Derivative Works:
You may not alter, transform, or build upon this work.

*Please contact me if you would like to use this in a commercial project. We can discuss the details.