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Cold Wet Rag

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A short experimental song with a lot of time changes. Made with Noteworthy Composer and Ableton Live.


I don't want you to feel like we're here to shit on your work. Most tracks that I am unsure of get multiple listens, which is the case with this one, because I've got to be a little blunt while not coming off as an asshole. And for the record, it doesn't sound completely unbearable.

What Gravey said is for the most part correct. It's a very haphazard and chaotic track that is very unpredictable compared to most conventional pieces. I saw that you mentioned that it's somewhat based on Igor's Piano Rag piece. Let me first say that Igor's style isn't my cup of tea, but I can appreciate his talent and will acknowledge that his music sounds great to a lot of people.

The main reason why Piano Rag works and yours isn't is because his pieces are all composed on one instrument: the piano. It's considered to be one of the most versatile instruments ever, and the score is usually played on that instrument only. What you have is two synths and a sampled drum set. Think of it as three people playing three different variations of Piano Rag at the same time. It probably wouldn't sound the greatest to the audience.

Another thing that I need to mention is velocity, velocity, velocity. I would have probably picked up on the freelance style if there was some sort of depth to the track. The synths seem to be playing at a constant volume. There aren't any soft keys to give the piece any brief moment of quieter play. It's all very much bang bang bang. You know what I'm saying?

But if you like it, then ignore everything I've said and keep doing your thing. At the end of the day, it's your work. Have a good one.

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cheezz responds:

Don't feel bad, I'm honored to have your feedback, your criticism was constructive and has given me some stuff to think about. Thanks man.

As chaotic as your song may be, I don't find it to be half-bad. You've made an interesting choice of instruments here, and the sound flows surprisingly well.

However, I will agree that it needs more of a direction. It leaves me confused by the end, and if that is not your intention, then you need to work more on progression of the main melody.

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cheezz responds:

Thanks man, I might work on it some more.

Alright, where to begin...

This sounds like a beginner's type of track. Before I get into too much detail, don't get discouraged. We all start somewhere small, and progress from there.

What I mean by this sounds like a beginner's type of track is that it lacks direction. There is no form or structure here. You should try to lay out a path you want to take your tracks in. A good way to do this is to think of your song in chunks. One chunk is verse 1, then another chunk is a chorus, then verse 2, then chorus, etc.

Also, while thinking of the song in chunks horizontally, you need to think vertically. There is no true melody, nor harmony present. Find an idea, and expand on that idea. Let that idea be the base of your song, it's melody. Then build around it little subtexts and layers to support it, this is it's harmony. In pop music, electronic music, and many other forms of music, power chords are quite popular.

Lastly, think about what direction you want the song to go in. Does it start happy and stay that way? Or does it become darker towards the end? Thinking of things like this before you write makes it so much easier to compose coherent and thoughtful songs.

Right now there are a lot of sounds and tid bits going on. But they have no structure, direction, or cohesiveness. This is what you need to work on in your upcoming tracks. Try to limit yourself at first to only a couple instruments. This will make it easier for you to focus on the things I mentioned above.

Best of luck.

1.5/5 and 3/10 overall.


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cheezz responds:

Thanks for the advice, there's actually only three instruments in the song, one powerful synth, one synth with an arpeggio and one drumset. Plus one other synth that comes in twice. The composition is largely rhythmically based on Stravinsky's Piano Rag, this one is actually more of an experiment. I guess I should change the category. My other songs are more structured (listen to one and give me your feedback), I think of this as being free form. The bad review kind of bums me out because I like this song :(

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Credits & Info


2.21 / 5.00

Feb 16, 2014
3:43 AM EST
File Info
5.2 MB
2 min 37 sec

Licensing Terms

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