Zelazon's Official NGADM Super Review!
Is the song constructed well or avant-garde?
For the song construct, it is constructed in the Bb minor scale with the progression going up to the top of the scale then returning back to Bb. In the alternate chord progression, the root is Db, which minor variation to the melody to create a sense of mystery in the song. For the aspect of review, I would say that the song is constructed sufficiently enough to retain the idea that listeners will understand on a more simplistic basis, which may be a good thing in certain cases.
How creative are you with your melody?
On this aspect, I feel like the melody, while good, doesn’t stray far from the riser or the main melody. This is one aspect of the song that is holding back the song as I get a sense of how the song is going to continue throughout and it doesn’t stray very far from this part. There are times during the later half that tries to deviate from the original path, but otherwise, it feels too safe with what was thought as an okay melody without really reaching out to achieve more.
Are the drums and percussion, if used, varied?
The drums and percussion with this song present an issue that I have with this particular song, which while they sufficiently cover most bases with this song, there are times when the drums are a bit too basic and don’t really convey the message that the song needs to have. The drums in this case stick strictly to the beat or off-beat, but never venture further into territory to give it that extra flair.
Is there more than whole notes with the bass?
The bass in this song does traditional bass for a trance song that is a well-defined feature of trance, but does not do much to add more to the song than what is necessary. In this case, I believe this to be more helpful than anything else as it allows the listener to focus on the melodic aspect of the songs, but in a lot of cases, because the bass does cover the low-end sufficiently, it creates a space in the song that feels empty. While the emptiness isn’t necessarily a bad thing if the song is conveying a nightlife environment, there are times when I feel that extra effort could have been placed on the bass to give it extra strength and to define it more.
How’s the ending?
Not good. The song just ends without leaving a memorable exit. You have all of these parts leading to a good stable song, then it just sort-of dies. That’s it. It would have been nice to take some time to develop the ending a bit more to look at thing to really make that part stand out.
How does the waveform look?
The waveform on newgrounds looks like it’s fitting perfectly within the song, which makes it easy to tell that no clipping is currently happening in the song.
Is there any peaking happening at any parts of the song?
Yes. After downloading the song, the song was observed with a spectrum analyzer to see if any peaking is happening, and there are cases when the song peaks around the 400hz, 600hz, 1k hz, and 10k hz. During the mixing process, these frequencies need to be focused on to make sure that leakage isn’t happening so the song remains balanced.
Are there any parts that sounds muddied?
Oddly enough, the kick sound muddied in this song, and my opinion on this is that the side-chain compression isn’t strong enough to define the kick on it own when working with the bass. I think looking at this aspect would have been helpful to maintain some of the low end issues happening with this song, but it does prove to suffer from this minor issue.
Are there parts that are too loud or too quiet?
No. I feel like with the waveform being appropriately mixed and mastered, the volume comes across as clear.
Has the balancing between each part allow the listener to understand the song well?
There are some parts that are balanced well, and others that appear to fall within the center of the stereo mixed. I think some areas of improvement could be to focus on some of the panning that happens in the song, automate it, or utilize an FX to make some of the sound more fluid. As I’m listening, I do not hear a difference between each of the speakers, which I think could have added more to the song.
Are there any sounds in the background to provide variety to the song?
Yes! There is plenty going on in the background to provide variety, and what I think you’ve done on this aspect is magnificent. The background noises create both an atmosphere and a story that the listener may engage in. While the melody in front is about keeping the trance feel alive, the stuff happening in the background is what is the core of the song.
Is there any elements that could be added to create a fluid design?
At the moment, there could be a few more elements added or automation provide to make the song fluid across a stereo system.
What is the artist doing to keep the song interesting?
On this front, the noises in the background in combination with the drums is where the heart of the song is. While the items at the forefront of the song is nice, the approach feels a bit too static with the bass, which never ventures further from the aspect of the song that is trying to retain the trance feel.
Is what’s being done with this song original or similar to the same genre of music? If similar, is there anything being produced that stands out?
On this aspect, my opinion is that the song is similar to the same genre of music. This isn’t a bad thing per se, but on the aspect of being a good trance song versus being an outstanding song that is fulfilling the strength of the competition, there are aspects of the song I find to be lacking in the trance category that would create the energy to make it excellent. This is a great song, but there’s attention needed in some areas that would create that aspect that would push the boundaries on this song.
How enjoyable is the song?
The song is one that you can have playing in the background and never get tired of listening to. It’s one that you listen to while doing homework, working on a project, or playing in the background in the cafe without wondering about the owner’s choice of music.
Is there more than one chord progression being used?
While I think there is more than one chord progression being used, it feels like the majority of the song stick on Bb minor. One of the more problematic aspects of the song is that it doesn’t really change much as you continue to listen to it, which is the primary reliance on the Bb minor chord progression. I think a few chord changes with emphasis on those parts would help spice up the song a bit more to give it a distinct feel and make it sound like a lot of planning was put into it.
If no chord progression are being used, what is keeping the song cohesive?
Does the artist push their boundaries or stays safe?
I feel like this song stick very close to the vest with the formation of the song and general approach to the genre. For a song developed for the NGADM, one of the things that makes an artist really separate themselves from the pack is to really create a punch with their much that creates a lasting impression on the listener for the ages.
Total Score: 40 x 2 = 80