Everyone‘s writing tons of 5 paragraph reviews talking about chords and stuff, but it just want to say that this is like, really, really, good.
I just listened back to it recently, and I realized that... OMFG this chords! The chord progression is amazing, so is the music construction. I didn't think that this music would be the first from yours to make me shiver! This is definitely a great music - a masterpiece I would say.
I like the atmosphere at the beginning. The piece is rather slow to develop, but does a good job of utilizing the entire frequency range right off the bat. I like the dissonances at around :45 and the sense of climax into 1:07. The bass was a little overwhelming by around 1:40. I understand the effect of pumping the bass up is to lead into the energetic section at 2:08, but I thought it was a bit over-the-top. The injection of energy at 2:08 was cool, but the slow pacing didn’t exactly change there. I think you needed some stronger melodies earlier on in this piece, too. The sound design and production quality are quite admirable, though - the excessive bass was just a bit much. I like the tranquility at 5:15. You’ve really put a lot of emotion into this piece, which I appreciate a lot. That said, I didn’t think it needed to be so long or drawn out. I know you were going for a cinematic vibe, but without many prominent melodies or particular riffs, the composition didn’t quite come together for me. Overall, it’s a cool track that just needs a bit more work on the arrangement to hit it home. Keep at it, Cursedsnake! ;)
== This is an official NGUAC Review ==
I remember you from tryouts (who doesn't?) for submitting an absurdly long 15 minute varied piece. I thought that the track was good, but it was stretched far too thin and lacked any true standout ideas. Well, congrats my friend for fixing all problems with that track and freaking knocking my socks off in the process.
Let's just get right into why I like this song so much: the drops are so deceptively simple, and yet so freaking fascinating. I mean, it's just a rhythmic thing with chords, and the rhythms aren't even that fascinating, so it's kind of a mystery to me why it even works. Part of it is the harmonic choices you've made. With a lot of songs in the NGUAC I can be like "oh it's this progression", and with a few more rare songs I can be like "oh neat, he used a III" (or some other interesting idea). In this song I have NO IDEA WTF IS GOING ON other than to know that IT IS AWESOME. There are all sorts of out-of-scale chords and cool extensions that I've basically never heard before, but they all work perfectly. Like seriously, 2:33, is that chord even legal? I'm pretty sure that chord is banned in a few different states.
But yeah, so the composition here is really fascinating and off the chain. Let's get to where you could improve. First of all, the mix is a really obvious problem. The transitional sections between 'drops' are okay, but the drops themselves could really use a deeper bass presence. I would strongly encourage you to research sub bass and how to use it to flesh out your mixes that need bass. Furthermore, the kick and snare are way too quiet in each of the drops, and could really stand to be louder.
My other big problem is the arrangement. I seem to recall you as the guy who submitted a 15 minute long piece to the tryouts phase, so I commend you for submitting "a much more trimmed down piece" (that was a joke). However, this piece is still too long for the amount of detail that it has. For the record, I have nothing wrong with long pieces. One of my favorite pieces is like 36 minutes long (thanks, kashiwa daisuke). But a six minute track has to have enough detail to keep all six minutes interesting. Right now, it has enough detail to keep about 4 minutes interesting, and the atmospheric breakdown sections are the obvious problem. This is as "easy" as either trimming them down OR introducing additional rhythmic/melodic/atmospheric components. Your sound design in these breakdown sections is really intriguing (if a bit reverb-heavy), so just tighten it up a bit!
Minor complaint: I don't like how the second drop kind of just fades out. I know it seems like a reasonable thing to do, but just trust me, for some odd reason it's never effective to fade out a really energetic section. It's almost always a better choice to actually ramp the energy UP and then when you hit the next bar cut out everything completely. That's why stuff like drum fills are really effective, but you can get a similar effect with risers, or opening filters, or blah blah blah.
Overall, this song is boss.
Mini-scores (not used to calculate final score in any way - just so you know what needs improvement):
Sound Design: 3+/4
Please contact me if you would like to use this in a project. We can discuss the details.