=== This is an NGADM Round 3 Review ===
Okay, NOW we're talking.
This piece is INCREDIBLE! I'm not quite sure how you did it in 2 days. In fact, I'm not sure how you did it at *all*. I was somewhat intimidated about writing a review for it because I wasn't sure exactly what I was going to do other than write THIS SONG IS MY JAM over and over again, at least 500 times, with a couple of table flipping emoji in there for good measure. But maybe I could at least dissect why it's my jam a little bit?
The main riff is just awesome. Probably one of the best NGADM riffs I've ever heard. To be clear, I'm talking about the thing at :24 here (and again with modifications at 2:03). The thing that really surprised me is that the first and second time I listened to this song I just heard :24-:33, immediately recognized it was awesome, and figured the rest of the riff after :33 couldn't possibly live up to it and kind of tuned it out (I also think to some degree that the user is not primed to listen too closely to any riff after the first four bars). Turns out, the second half of the melody is just as good as the first half, just jazzier. I think figuring this out was the point at which I started flipping tables.
The fact that your main riff is so awesome really took me aback, honestly. From your first and second tracks I had you pegged as a guy who could (maybe) write a good solo, but generally wrote half-decent, moderately catchy, but generally repetitive riffs. This riff is from another planet compared to your other stuff. I don't know what you did to make that possible, but you should keep doing it.
I could talk a little about all the other stuff I like about this track. The mix is really well done - those pads are just enormous. I love almost the entire transition back into the main section at 1:19, with a slight exception. I like the random airhorn sample you snuck into this song (I'm not gonna say where it is so that everyone else can search for it). The addition of the slap bass to the Midimachine Sound (TM) is almost like cheating, because everyone knows that slap bass immediately makes everything better. (It's kind of like soundgoodizer, or a kazoo.)
But I feel like ranting and raving for extended periods of time about that stuff would kind of be missing the forest for the trees, since EVERYONE KNOWS that the melody is 90%+ of the appeal of this track.
But maybe you're wondering why I didn't give this an even *higher* score than the score I already gave, considering how I praised the song so much? Dang, you're greedy. Ah, nah, that's a reasonable request.
I do have a minor nit-pick, which I just have to gripe about, since... well, you know. I have to. The execution of the transition from 1:19 back into the main section is ever so slightly off. Up until about 1:40 its just an AWESOME transition. The little melody going on top of the percussion craziness is just perfect. Then suddenly at 1:40 to 1:42 you drop the ball - there's a bit too long of a gap and all the awesome buildup energy fades away. This really bugs me because it's just a minor but damaging flaw to what was otherwise a near perfectly executed buildup. Like, I WANT to enjoy the buildup more, but I can't! I say this is a minor nit-pick, but really, I wonder how much better this song would have been with a properly executed build back into that final section. It could have made a big difference, since the build back to the final section is usually the peak of a song.
Alright, so that's my minor complaint. My next suggestion is a lot more important, imo.
The thing about your track is that I *wanted* to loop it like 100 times. It's insanely catchy, so why would I not want to listen to it 100 times in a row? But after the second time listening to it I realized that I was insanely fatigued because the song is so insanely loud. I had to go put on some Elliot Smith to recover. But I still wanted to try again later! I still *liked* your song - it's just that I *couldn't* listen to it multiple times. In fact, it's not even just a problem of multiple listens - I'm not sure if you put it through serious compression or what but this song is so loud that it's actually tiring to listen to, even once.
Outrageous loudness is a bit of a double-edged sword. It generally improves the first listening experience, because everyone likes loud music (proved by science!) - but it degrades the listening experience after the first listen because the song gets fatiguing.
But, here's the thing: your song is so good that you don't need to go to the lengths of extreme loudness in order to compensate for something. The melodies and builds are awesome and they will continue to be awesome even if you make the song's mix a little less aggressive. If you were just to tone down the loudness a bit, you'd get a song which rewarded multiple listens rather than punished people who try to listen many times, and that is the ultimate goal here.
Just to be clear, when I say "loudness" I don't exactly mean volume loudness (because then I could just turn down my volume and it'd be fine!) - it's more like a combination of mix aggressiveness, drum loudness, compression, and a bunch of other factors that combine to give listener fatigue.
Anyway, this was the track of the round for me. Given how outrageously high your average was already, I can only imagine that with the loudness issue fixed, you'd score higher than 10. Awesome work.