Pressing On

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Author Comments

I hiked near the North Korean border and ate at a secluded restaurant where no Westerner has set foot. I hitchhiked across Japan and slept in the homes of strangers despite being unable to speak the language. I walked twenty miles across an island in Thailand and met a woman who claimed to have spoken with demons, to have once had a pet wolf twice the height of any man, and to have underwent three breast reduction surgeries(!).

My year in East Asia has been so many things, and I've changed a lot as a result. My desires, goals, all different now. It's made coming home especially difficult...My world view has shifted and I've grown into much a different person, but everything here seems to have been frozen in time. For a while I felt like a foreigner in my own country, and getting back to the grind of work and school has been tough. It's like my life has suddenly slowed down to a snail's pace. It feels like I've taken ten steps backward, away from my dreams and goals.

Despite all that, I feel an intense drive to move forward. The last year has been so incredible, so vibrant, so liberating. I want more of that. To experience life in all its fullness.

This song represents a year of adventure with all its victories, failures, hopes, and sorrows. Most of all, it represents my will to press on.

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This is an NGADM Round 1 Review


I can't stress how beautiful your melodies and harmonies are. You have some of the most impressive compositional talents I've heard from anyone on Newgrounds. The melodies you compose are always so sensible and structurally sound, and yet they're chock full of emotion and memorability. There's absolutely no exception to this fact in this track. Your piano flows beautifully and the bassline melds really well with it, to the point that this doesn't feel entirely like a standard piano solo with accompaniment, but a conversation between multiple instruments. In this light, you really impressed me, and got a lot of points for it.

I'm afraid what really didn't do it for me this time is the mixing. The bass felt very detached from the rest of the mix for some reason, and the piano felt held back/drowned out. In addition to that, I don't really enjoy your bass sample. I also feel like the track overall could do with some more reverb, the piano in particular. Finally, as stunkel mentioned, the drums could've popped a bit more. Those are all my complaints about the mixing/sound quality. As for composition, my only issue is the fadeout ending. I can appreciate that kind of ending as a stylistic choice to imply a sense of continuity, but over here it felt less like that and more like a cop-out to a proper ending. I'd have gone for a piano solo ending which dies down gradually in dynamic and ends on some really neat chord.

Complaints aside, this is a wonderful piece of music that I truly did enjoy. It has a sense of drive and forward motion that resonates well with what you wrote in your author's comments. I hope you enjoyed taking part in the contest, and it's been a pleasure as always!


SCORE: 9.0/10

It's good to hear from you again. You are an emotional person and a master of music that comes from deep within.

I had a six-month internship in Maryland (USA) in 2013. When I came back to Mississippi, everything was as I had left it, and it felt like the Maryland trip had never actually happened. Yet I still have all the wonderful and terrible memories from Maryland and they are clear sources of inspiration for me.

I would imagine your fantastic trek would even more so be a source of inspiration for anything you seek to create.


The piece starts with an easy transition. Slow even pace and piano number. Then it blooms! Bringing with it a faster pace yet still something of a journey. A continuous wave of emotion from start to finish. I believe the song itself helps to see what you mean with your own journey. Bravo.

Amazing, as I read you author comments, I caught all types of feels. Your not alone we are all foreigners in this strange world we live in.

NGADM review

The composition in this track is truly stellar. It had me bobbing my head the entire time. You properly build up the song in an emotional way that really moves me. Adding one instrument at a time while the piano plays its solo in a rhythmic and yet decisive manner is lovely. Everything just moves itself along really nicely. The piano also has a ton of personality to it’s playing style. It feels very expressive, which is difficult for a lot of people to achieve with piano.
This is one of the more memorable pieces in this round. A few things that sort of threw me off though: Fadeouts really annoy the crap out of me. I feel they are really lazy. Hearing a proper ending is something I really like to hear because it shows that the composer took time to emotionally close off their track in a proper way, like a movie would. It sort of just feels unfinished to me.
Another thing that bothered me a little was the sounds of some of the instruments. In particular the clap/snapping sound used as the downbeat. It felt a little cheesy and didn’t cater to the songs environment so much. I also felt that a little more dynamics from some of the instruments would have been nice. Particularly just making them louder. I felt that the drums really could have come out and just opened up the track to a whole new area very smoothly.
I really love this track though man. Great job. Favorited



Credits & Info

4.79 / 5.00

Aug 18, 2015
10:17 PM EDT
File Info
9 MB
3 min 57 sec

Licensing Terms

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