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My submission for NGUAC Final Round

For this final round, I knew I had to try something a little weird and out of my comfort zone, so that's exactly what I tried to do here. The song is supposed to be a short tale of metamorphosis.


In an attempt to do something way out of left field:

-Most of the drum samples are original recordings instead of the usual premade patches I use

-I used live recorded acoustic guitar for the first time, as well as piano.

-Tried to incorporate something related to lofi, which is a whole new field to me.

-Reharmonized the melody for the breakdown, which is also something I had to research how to do.


Other stuff includes:

-Choir

-Marimba

-Violin

-Whistle

-Subtle tempo automation

-Almost a dozen different pads and synths

-Lots more little background details


I've been working on this a whole lot for these past couple weeks and I'm still only managing to get it out on the last day, so hopefully the work pays off. If not, this was still an incredible learning experience and I'm thankful to have made a piece that I'm proud of. This was tons of fun :)

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I like the groovy percussion at the beginning and the quirky pads at :14. The sound design in this piece is awesome, and you nailed the sound design too. The melodies at :46 are nice, even if the refrain sounds a bit choppy overall with all the stop-start phrasing. The guitar at 1:19 was a fun surprise. It sounds a tad out-of-tune, but in a way that contributes to the quirky vibe of the track overall. Some of the chord progressions are a little cliche, but I like the variations on the refrain the second time around at 2:40. The blissful mood and instrumentation really have me sold on this one. Keep it up, Walpang! ^_^

Mixing, mastering, and balance
1.75/2
Structure, transitions, phrasing, and variety
1.25/1.5
Melody, tonality, harmony, and texture
1.75/2
Instrumentation and sound design
1/1
Emotion, atmosphere, and catchiness
1.25/1.5
Originality and uniqueness
.75/1
Overall (how do the elements above interact?)
1/1
Composite score
8.75/10

Walpang responds:

Woahh I finally got approval from TaintedLogic :0

score: 7/10

what I liked:

• I really like the drum pattern in the beginning, and the marimba that goes with it, sounds a lot like Mura Masa
• 1:30 the reversed guitar is a good idea, but not sure that it was executed to full potential
• 2:34 this delayed drop is very effective
• I like the variety of drums you used

what I think could be improved:

• might be the timing of certain notes, but for some reason I feel like this track is overall a little "messy"
• 0:24 the fast-plucked synth sounds a little dull, I think adding more resonance would help it come to life more
• the drop had more potential, I feel like it didn't hit as hard as I expected
• maybe use brighter pads, use more sidechaining, louder drums?
• the transition at 1:17 was a little rough, especially switching between different speeds of subdivisions, and the change in main instrument
• 1:52 this cutout of instruments was also a little awkward, as if someone playing this live made a mistake
• the marimba feels super close in the stereo space, and everything else is far away, and that kind of detaches the marimba from the rest of the music
• overall, the sound is missing a little bit of life, I would suggested adding an exciter and/or more reverb to the entire track

great job, this is definitely one of the more unique tracks I've heard!

I like what you've done with your drum samples. I would have appreciated just a bit less reverb on the kick, possibly everywhere. The mix throughout sounds just a little muffled with all of it.

On the lead, it sounds just a bit flat to me somehow. Maybe vibrato would help and some more modulation

Throughout, your snare tends to hide a bit in the mix -- the lead is clearly audible which is good, but the drums have to do extra work to cut through. It may help you to try applying KSHMR Essentials Kick on your percussion instruments for transients. I fell in love with the free version recently and used it on all of my percussion for my latest track.

Your last snare in particular would really benefit I think from tape saturation and transient shaping. As is it sounds just a little laying there. I would have liked if that drop lasted just a little bit longer.

All in all I love the idea of this song, and I think it's really cool you specifically learned a new technique to create it. Nice work.

Thanks for coming out to NGUAC!

-Official NGUAC 2020 Final Round Review-

I like the instrumentation, it reminds me of Emyprean by Etzer. The chimes and the lead are quite nice, but too compressed as well: you could have balanced better them by lowering the low band on the chimes, and raising a tiny bit the high band on the lead. The drums, even if they're a bit too dry, are really nice and flow properly; the section at 2:39, after the "Go!" drop shout, doesn't contain much of them, and it's a tad bit too empty and less impactful than i expected it to be. Luckily, at 2:51 a richer roll comes in to finish the piece. Not a bad submission, with a little bit of tweaking it could've become even better. Glad you choose to experiment new styles out of your "comfort zone", it helps a lot to become a better artist :)

Originality: 2/2
Composition: 1.9/2
Structure: 1.4/2
Tecnicity: 1.4/2
Impact: 1.5/2
Total: 8.2/10

ah maybe turn the drops up like 1-2 db and turn up the high end and a tiny bit down the low end in the final drop. Also the snares at 2:50 could go down a bit in volume, other than that I can't really think of anything else that needs work. Nice Job :)

Walpang responds:

Should be fixed now.
Btw you've been super supportive this whole contest man, I can't thank you enough.

Credits & Info

Artist

Listens
415
Faves:
3
Downloads
7
Votes
13
Score
4.25 / 5.00

Uploaded
Sep 12, 2020
5:39 PM EDT
Genre
Dance
File Info
Song
2.9 MB
3 min 12 sec

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