Official AIM2018 Review!
Can't tell if it's just me, or if your key synth in the intro has a really low 100 Hz or so hum on each attack. It gradually grows as sections get bigger. Sounds like reverb needs serious lo-cut.
As we progress, I find I really like the section up to the ritard. Changing up your instrumentation was a big leap of faith here, but I find it works, even though your synths ring pretty seriously outdated to my ear. I'm hearing what almost sounds like distortion in your low strings with each stab.
Arrangement definitely works. Technical aspects seem to be most of what's killing this piece. I'm actually surprised that East West sounds so machine gun. I may have to look into it myself. Meantime I'd recommend Synful Orchestra if you can score a copy. Much more natural.
Sounds also like a lot of reverb is clouding your mix. I'd say it could use some mastering compression too, but I'm aware cinematic doesn't always make much use of this, and film scores can be much more subtle.
Enjoyed this piece. Lack of variation aside, theme was clear, creepy, pounded home, and really matched your choice of artwork well. Nice work!
Thanks for turning out to the competition!