**this is a ngadm judge review**
Okay there is SO much to unpack in this song so let’s get to it!!!!! Excellent composition, first of all. Really enjoyed super well-harmonized main melody, and I loved the little details in the piano solo that reflected the main melody (and the piano solo itself was BOMB). It’s also super clean production-wise! Most of the sounds are really crisp and interestingly designed, and the integration of both electro and jazzy elements is both refreshing and intriguing. Anyways yeah, you did a super good job! You had my highest score of the round (and iirc the highest average score out of everyone in r1 that used more than one instrument?) and it was well-deserved!
Buuut it’s no secret that this song did SUPER well and it’s probably not that helpful to keep waxing about how c r a z y this song is. So what could be better? All aboard the nitpick train, choo choo.
First thing: The solo. It’s a good solo!! But honestly, a realistic-sounding solo in the middle of an electro-sounding song is like maybe the only time I would recommend *against* quantizing something to the beat, because something about those rhythmically smooth runs up and down the piano sound….. inhuman :OO (contrast this to johnfn’s songs, which are electro and therefore need quantization to buy into the inhumanity of the track but then he always forgets to quantize and it sounds really annoying.) Imperfection is perfection bbbb
Second thing: There’s a bit of over-reliance on those stabs on the downbeats. Honestly that kick+stab combo gets kind of tiring after a while because there’s so *much* emphasis on them and because that technique departs from standard jazziness (3:05-3:20 is an example). And sureee they’re not on *every* downbeat but like, there’s other ways of creating a sense of climax than that repetitive pounding (the instrument is also a lil too gritty for the feel of the song imo? but that’s just a personal opinion). I mean, the introduction of the sax and the variation on the main melody themselves are climaxy enough, you don’t necessary gotta allll out with the stabby stabby and kiccy kiccy (final note: the emphasis on those stabs makes the low mid part of the mix stand out more than the rest, which leads me to my next thing…)
Second thing: Where did the bass go? I feel like there’s lots of spots in the song that could be a more b a s s y. Maybe there’s a sub but I’m just not hearing it because I’m too old; maybe it’s my headphones. But I’m having a hard time making out the bassline during the electro bits, which sucks because I know you write such good basslines and because groovy basslines are such a biiig part of of jazz! Also add more bassy noises to ur kick pls
Okay tbh that’s basically all I had to say about this song. In the end, none of these nitpickerinos detracts from the overall quality of the song enough to lower it from my #1 / 36 slot, and congrats on a well-deserved high score in your first-ever NGADM!! Here’s hoping that you’ll be less busy next year so we can all have more root beer floats to go around~~