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Martian Mummies (GD Cut)

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Author Comments

First genre-mix in a while, I went for a mixture of traditional Northern African music, and sci-fi. I don’t know what on Earth made me choose those two (or the parts you will notice are neither), so perhaps it’s just another way this song is

Out of this world

Good lord that pun was bad

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Hello! This is a review for the NGUAC competition.

I've gone over one or two general categories of issues specific to your song, and one section of things I think also deserve complimenting. I prefer being very direct with my critique, none of it is meant to offend. Thank you for your understanding!

Constructive Criticism:

- You have a couple things to work on with the mixing and sound design. First of all, the volume is definitely a bit too much. While instruments are audible through each other, they can be a tad muddy and actually lose detail from how overly loud everything is. Remember, there's only so much data a mp3 file can hold! (especially one at a lower quality like this) As TL also said in his review, the attack on the initial synth is a little much with the resonant filter envelope. A lot of other instruments can be a tad too much in terms of high frequencies like the bitmunched synth during 1:45, though this is also quite possibly due to overly intense volume. The same does apply for some of the lower bass instruments - remember that overly loud high treble & sub-bassy frequencies can be painful for listeners, especially those with audio outputs that favor certain frequencies. Try reducing all instruments by around -10dB, then limiting with a threshold of around -1.1dB.

- TL also comments on the arrangement of the piece, and I fully agree with him. Let's dig into WHY It's important, though. Music, stories, even visual art is founded on contrast and guiding the person experiencing the art through that experience. Visual art uses sharp lines, blurs, color contrast, angles, perspective... all of this to draw the observer's eye to intended areas. Stories and music, however, follow a different type of organization as they're experienced over longer spans of time. In stories, you typically follow the order of: Intro -> Rising Action -> Smaller Climax -> Break -> Rising Action -> Full Climax -> Falling Action -> Epilogue. Music can be structured the same way, with an introduction, build, climax, breakdown, build, climax, wind-down and outro. This is applied almost universally in pop genres, with variable length in sections, possibly a third climax, etc. However, there typically contrast between not just the individual sections, but also the same sections at different times. The later climax is also the most intense and/or emotional section of the piece. While you have contrast in the specific sounds used during the different sections, there isn't much of any contrast in harmony or dynamic intensity between these climaxes. To improve, I would highly recommend listening through a few pieces of music you find inspiring and see how they maintain interest over time through variation.

Compliments to the Composer:

- There are some really neat sounds in this track, especially the bass modulation. I particularly love sounds like 0:39 for how much they really break the sound up in a unique way. While the piece is loud, it does also tend to be mixed in such a way that individual instruments are all audible, something that gives you a very solid foundation to fix up the volume excess. I do also love attempts at fusion genres, so respect for that as well!

Final score: 5.5

J-XVII responds:


The sound design is neat, but the attack on the synth at the beginning is a bit sharp for my tastes. I like the ominous tone and sense of build into :24. The mix is clean, if a tad over-compressed. The texture is a bit thin, and I think you could've done more to develop the harmonic content earlier on. I like the injection of energy at 1:29, but the clap sample there sounds really generic and dry. The transition into 2:01 was a bit awkward - I like the quirky chord progression there, but the way it flowed from the previous section could've been curated a little more carefully. Maybe a fade-in would've helped. The breakdown at 3:02 was a bit bland, but I liked the heavier breaks at 4:02. I think the arrangement of the piece feels a bit stale overall. Especially with such repetitive harmonies, I think it would help keep this piece more engaging if you had a more constant sense of evolution. There are long sections in this piece that have a similar energy and volume level - example, 3:02 - 3:57, and then a Band-Aid 5-second buildup to transition into the next section. It just feels a bit formulaic and stale. And maybe part of the reason it feels that way is because the overall texture in some parts of the piece is really minimal, but I think a stronger ebb and flow to the piece is especially important in a relatively long one like this. Still, the sound design, catchy rhythms and harmonies, and crisp mastering serve you well here. Keep at it, J-XVII! Looking forward to seeing you during "contest season" on NG!

Also, since you asked in your PM, the next NGUAC starts in June. But you should check out the audio forum - there are collabs and other events happening all the time. ^_^

Some parts is a little repetive, but making everything something different is hard so i accept it. The first drop could have some sidechain and harder hitting kicks and more bass. Overall good so i give it 5 stars.

J-XVII responds:

Sadly, Auxy does not have an option for side chaining, only for pan, so it was hard to work that part that well. Otherwise, thank you and I get that my music is somewhat repetitive a lot!

Very original and good!

nice, it actualy feels like a gd song or idk
Greate song *and pun*!

J-XVII responds:

It is a GD song, technically, just waiting for someone to use it now!

Credits & Info


4.03 / 5.00

Nov 5, 2020
3:30 PM EST
File Info
5 MB
5 min 28 sec
  • Auxy

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