Rite of First Flight


Author Comments

This may become part of a second Karugis album... For the moment, it's for the NGADM! It's about a giant pillar in the savannah on Karugis.

Tools: Ableton Live, Composer Cloud (Silk, Gypsy, Stormdrum 3), Omnisphere, Cinestrings Solo/Core, Massive, Reference 4, YouLean Loudness Meter

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I like the eastern-sounding instruments at the beginning and the cool syncopations. The filtering and panning on the stringed instrument at :16 is really neat, and I really like the glitchy flair at :56. The sound design here is so eclectic and refreshing, although there are a lot of relatively percussive sounds in the texture that could use some smoother over at some point. Perhaps some sort of drone-like ambiance would fit the character of this piece and help fill out the texture at times? Still, I really like how the other instruments fade away when the adorable melody comes in at 1:34 with the shaker. The repetition of the string line at 2:30 also gave the piece a bit of structural cohesion that is sometimes lacking in your tracks. The transition at 3:26 was a bit sudden, and I think some of the dense rhythmic patterns there get in each other’s way. Still, by around 4:03 I’m loving the mellow tone of the outro, and the nature FX in the background really helps set the scene. Wonderful work as usual, Syamori. Please let me know when the album comes out. ^_^

Mixing, mastering, and balance
Structure, transitions, phrasing, and variety
Melody, tonality, harmony, and texture
Instrumentation and sound design
Emotion, atmosphere, and catchiness
Originality and uniqueness
Overall (how do the elements above interact?)
Composite score

Syamori responds:

Thanks TL! I'll keep this stuff in mind, and I'll definitely let you know when it's out! I've come to a few new musical epiphanies and breakthroughs with the next song for the contest, regarding the personification of my instruments... I can't wait to post it lol

Zelazon Official NGADM Super Review!


Is the song constructed well or avant-garde?

For this song, I’m going to go with an avant-garde approach to music design. To be blunt, it feels like an atmospheric approach to a scene or game that is in a wilderness area or in a primitive town that operates on a day-to-day basis. Because it’s more on the avant-garde side, it has been really hard for me to gain a footing on how and what I think about this song. On the one hand, it sounds really nice; in another, I don’t really know what to think about it.

How creative are you with your melody?

The melody is super creative and the way the melody flows and blends with each of the instruments is nothing short of professional. The issues I feel comes from the fact that the song really does not have a statement as to what the melody is. The motif of the song feels mainly with the bass, but the bass is so light that it’s hard to feel grounded with this song.

Are the drums and percussion, if used, varied?

The percussion in this song is varied in a way that creates interest to listen to. The issue on the drums however is that both the drums are minimalist and quiet in relative aspect to the other parts going on with the song, which I think they should be brought up to create a presence in the song. The drums also aren’t too complex, but offer an aspect of how to appreciate the song.

Is there more than whole notes with the bass?

No. The bass is varied and is a guitar-like sound (one I’m not too familiar with) but it sounds good for what it is doing. The bass creates a fluid feel that encompasses the listener in a journey that that feels both foreign and at home.

How’s the ending?

The ending of the song feels like it ends subtly, which isn’t on the “just ends” side of the spectrum, but it feels like more could have been done to define the aspects of what this song is trying to do to give it more of an appropriate exit. For the elements going on, the tricky part in analyzing this song is that there isn’t really much of a footing aside from the back-end element to look at. A solid melody or motif could have help to define the experience for the listener, which is ultimately statement the journey should be making.

Score: 8.5


How does the waveform look?

The waveform looks good, however, analyzing the frequencies from the website routed to my daw, it looks as though the bass is very minimal, which creates an empty feel in the song. Additionally, it appears that the song was not cut off around the 20k range, which may not be too problematic for this song, but it can be an issue with people who can hear the higher frequencies.

Is there any peaking happening at any parts of the song?

There appears to be some issues around the 1k and 6k range with peaking. While it’s mainly for some of the synths that appear in the song at certain parts, it does seem to have a heavier weight on the song itself, which could create some imbalances in the listening experience. While it’s not too terrible, these things are happening and it’s worth paying attention to these things to keep the sound equally balance a\cross the board.

Are there any parts that sounds muddied?

Within the song itself, no, but from a frequency perspective, it appears that the mid is an overwhelming aspect of the song that needs to be looked at in order to create the balance that is expected from high caliber music.

Are there parts that are too loud or too quiet?

As I mentioned before, the bass seems really low on the frequency end for it to be a distinctive sound. I’m thinking maybe a sub bass or something to help lift the low end up a tiny bit to ensure that the sound on the lower frequencies balances in a way that give the quiet parts substance.

Score: 8

Sound Design

Has the balancing between each part allow the listener to understand the song well?

For this song, I think the balance of each part is well designed where you can distinctively hear the parts of the song where they need to be. From the violins echoing from each ear, to the harmonies playing in a stereo setting, I believe that you did an excellent job at keeping the balance going with this particular song.

Are there any sounds in the background to provide variety to the song?

Quite so. As there is so much variety going on with this song, the placement of each part creates the background noise that you can both understand and appreciate. It’s nice to hear effort on this behalf to really engage the listener in ways that wouldn’t be possible with the basic amount of sound design.

Is there any elements that could be added to create a fluid design?

I think this boils down to the issue discussed with the frequencies as the low end could have created that worldly feel and help to create the groundedness that this song needs. Also, without the motif to follow, the song struggles to find itself which makes it hard to say if there’s more that could be added.

Score: 9


What is the artist doing to keep the song interesting?

I think the way the violins weaves in and out of notes creates a sense of journey, of adventure that makes the listener want to continue on with the song. I think what is done here is fantastic, and I think the way that the notes are constructed may be appreciated by listeners of all kinds.

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?

For an orchestra song and for a newgrounds song as well, I would say that this is more so on the original side though songs like it has been done before. One of the trickier aspects of developing an original song is that there is not a precedent on how to work on them, considering that the type of music developed for this song is more of a worldly kind.

How enjoyable is the song?

I would say that the song is enjoyable, but once again, the feeling of groundedness is fleeting, which prevents me from being immersed in the song. While it doesn’t take too much away from the song, it is enough to leave me in a state of confusion as to what the aspect of the song I should be attempting to enjoy.

Score: 8.5


Is there more than one chord progression being used?

I would say yes, though I am conflict as to which chord progression is being utilized in this song. The way that the chords flow through the song is natural and help to create the picture in which the listener may view the song. Additionally, the chords are used in nontraditional ways to ensure that the flows between the notes and the song itself is always moving or flexible.

If no chord progression are being used, what is keeping the song cohesive?


Does the artist push their boundaries or stays safe?

This song definitely pushes boundaries in an unconventional way.

Score: 9

Total Score: 43 x 2 = 86

Wonderful modulation and dynamics on the instruments. Feels very authentic.
The composition is captivating and exotic.
Loving this

This is my favorite from this round thus far. I love it!

Oh my, this is absolutely amazing...

Syamori responds:

Thanks! I'm glad you enjoy it!

Credits & Info


4.79 / 5.00

Sep 5, 2019
9:43 AM EDT
File Info
10.2 MB
4 min 29 sec

Licensing Terms

Please contact me if you would like to use this in a project. We can discuss the details.