Nur Ein XIV Round Four "No Memory"

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Re: Nur Ein XIV Round Four "No Memory"

Post by mo » Tue May 28, 2019 9:43 pm

All hail the Vowl!
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Re: Nur Ein XIV Round Four "No Memory"

Post by vowlvom » Tue May 28, 2019 10:15 pm

Wow, thanks! Quite surprised by that, my predictions were way off!
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Re: Nur Ein XIV Round Four "No Memory"

Post by frankie big face » Wed May 29, 2019 9:15 am

Well, I guess it's time for me to head on down the road.

I was talking to Grumpy Mike yesterday and I told him my goal for this Nur Ein was pretty much just to get back on the horse again and write some songs. Which I did. And I think two of them are pretty decent, but I'm not quite back to my old self yet. Not surprised to be out but (as I also said to Grumpy Mike), I've always been knocked out for songs I've like and this is no exception. Best of luck to the rest of you. See you in Madison maybe!
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Re: Nur Ein XIV Round Four "No Memory"

Post by Cybronica » Wed May 29, 2019 12:35 pm

Nur ein xiv 4

Reverse order, just cause:

Mandibles: I was so excited to have Zidong’s voice for lead on this. He’s got such a rich tone that I am always delighted by. This song was built out from and around the bridge- that line on repeat was the inspiration for the song. It was a real learning process to get the chip tune sounds, learning to use bit crusher and how to edit midi waveforms etc. As a total video game nerd, it was important to me to really emulate that old game sound, right down to fugal/baroque organ inspired composition style of Koji Kondo. I’m really happy with how it turned out.

Lichen throat: way to get 2 weeks of challenge and title into this song! Your aesthetic has a really interesting way of handling dissonance. It always has me on the edge of perturbed. The vocals are improving, but while the melody and rhythm are good, I think the second vocal took a hit this time around. It’s just off enough to draw attention to the rhythms and melodies not quite falling in line. The samples are a good choice, but it’s hard to hear because the sound quality is a little blurry. I assume at the end of round 7 we’ll all be on a group call for the nur ein bleak house book club?

Iveg: another cute song! A cool premise, too. I like the take on the title, and I really love the wordsmithing in the second verse about when he sees himself in the mirror. I love your use of the chiptune- it’s one of the more nostalgic sounding songs of the round.

Rain watt: love the chorus, especially when you flip into your high voice. It’s a really special moment. I like how it ties into your previous songs, and I love how you matched the crunch of the guitar to the low chip tune sound you selected. I don’t find this one quite as emotionally compelling as some of your other songs, but it’s still really enjoyable.

Faster Jackelope: I thought this was cute, so I’m sorry to see it so low in the rankings. The shift from the 8bit section to the big rock section is a bit incongruous- it feels very sudden, and almost like the key changes by a micro tone. I think the transition would have been smoother if either the tune or the 8 bit sounds had carried over. I like the lyrics a lot, though I didn’t quite get all the references (had to google echoplex); i also really like the Latin bridge, which was super charming. On the whole, the song reminded me a little bit of a music box, which I think is partially why the rock section caught me so off guard. Excellent singing all around, and I loved the 8bit composition.

Sunday Colors: this is so sweet. I love the dance meter, and you do a really good job incorporating the 8bit and I ABSOLUTELY LOVE the layered harmony section. Your recording skills have really come a long way since the start of the competition, and I’m glad you’ve been having fun exploring audacity! As for the lyrics... as per my usual, I didn’t absorb any lyrics for the first few listens and then I read the lyrics while listening and just about started crying in the office. It’s beautiful. Sorry to see you out.

Nick Soma: this is a cool song. I really like the music, which sounds positively 80s, and i like the idea of the lyrics. Very eternal sunshine of the spotless mind. The vocal harmonies are really nicely done. The chorus does sound a bit like the vowl sounds diss track chorus, and the rhymes sometimes sound quite awkward. I might end up putting this in my permanent collection.

Frankie big face: this is well put together, but it’s my least favorite of yours, and likely of the round. I just didn’t like the lyrics. I like the music, it has a decent beat, and the pac man sound was well used. The Mac error sound made me flinch every time due to years of conditioning (I grew up on the old timey macs). It just didn’t stand out to me the same way that your shock value or pump the brakes did.

Mac Bombast: I like the opening a lot, but I wish the 8bit carried into the verse or chorus, not just the post chorus (Upon further listens, I guess it does carry through? But it sounds so much like your regular instrumental choices that It’s hard to tell). Lyrics are great, I can really get on board with them, and it’s all well delivered, vocally speaking. I really love the outro ‘la la la’s, but the ‘is this the real life’ quote seemed out of nowhere, a bit of a non sequitur.

Grumpy Mike: ooh I really like this song, but despite your explanation on the boards, I find the connection to the title tenuous at best. Despite that, this is an invigorating head bopping song that has my dancing at my desk. I agree with the sentiment, and love the vocal delivery. Good use of 8bit sounds, especially the Mario coin bleep at the beginning which made me laugh out loud.

Rachel Layne: I love it when you guys lean into the folk country aspects of your music. I love that 8bit in my right ear; it’s a delicious sound. I like that riff in the left ear 8bit that intertwines with the bass. The vocal harmonies are lovely and remind me of Jessica Andrews. I think you’re one of if it the only people to have this take on the title (not that you can’t remember, but that when you do, there are no relevant experiences). Great song.

Merisan: As always, I love it whenever Erin has those layered harmonies- beautiful. This is a pretty classic pop song with the addition of 8bit sounds, which I also love. I like that you had the 8 bit be the structure of the song, instead of just adding them overtop of the regular instruments. Good song.

BSS: awesome intro. A couple of the lyrics’ wordings are really awkward and maybe could have used another once over. I like the bludily-doodily sound you have for your 8bit tie in, and the chorus is catchy. Good nur ein xiii 1 throw back.

Agony Sauce: not a big fan of the stop and start jolting feeling, especially how each word was its own unit and not part of a line. A decent song, good use of chiptune, and I do like that chromatic bit of the prechorus. I love the echoing “I do this to remember.”

Vowl Sounds: amazing use of chiptune. Amazing voice. Amazing production. And amazing continuation of the story. This is amazing, and totally deserving of the win. “i know this house, i know this hall, i know these windows and these walls, i knew it all, i knew it all except one room here,” is a brilliant lyric. The whole song is a brilliant lyric. Owl your vocals are sublime and I love the processing done on them for no memory/can’t process. And vom i am especially impressed by the mixing of all the various chiptune sounds, especially the various console work. I’m completely hooked on the story you guys are weaving and can’t wait to hear what comes next!
Last edited by Cybronica on Wed May 29, 2019 6:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Nur Ein XIV Round Four "No Memory"

Post by Spintown » Wed May 29, 2019 1:47 pm

Agony Sauce
Again, I’m impressed you’re making this harder on yourself than needed...and still killing it. Good use of the title, and the chiptune sounds fit in perfectly. The only part I didn’t really care for was the break. The less dominate sound just made me cringe. Really enjoyed the story & vocals for this. Having your cadence be robotic & actually still catchy is just really cool. I need to stop listening in alphabetical order on first listen...you set the bar very high for everyone else.

Berkeley Social Scene
You really embraced the novelty song this round, and did a GREAT job with it. Used the title & the computer sounds prominently in the chorus. Told a clear, entertaining story. Vocals & music both were catchy. This is just damn fine work. I’ve only listened to 2 songs at this point, and I think they should both win the round.

Faster Jackalope
Before I finished the first verse I had to get Google to help me out. Googled Memory Man, capstan, scanned the lyrics & Googled echoplex… I don’t really know anything about this stuff, but I can paint a picture of what the song is about now. When the pre-chorus came in it was a bit shocking. The music was jarring & the vocals a little lost in the mix in places. The chorus wasn’t bad, but every damn time that pre-chorus came on I wanted to use the memory wiping device that BBS is selling. Not sure why you needed the Latin bridge, the English one was fine aside from the backing vocals being a bit distracting. This song sounds like a mashup of different songs that didn’t want to go together. Individually might have liked 2 of them, but the different sounds just didn’t flow together all that well for me.

Frankie Big Face
I love this song. It might be because I relate to it a little too much though. Your funny bits got a laugh when they were supposed to, the music was catchy, and you checked all the boxes with the challenge. I had 2 minor issues lyrically though. #1 Who plays a first person shooter on a Mac...from the couch? #2 Why doesn’t he have any memory? Was it because he was distracted by his wife trying to get his attention & he forgot what was going on in the game? The “No Memory” part isn’t laid out as clearly as I’d like. It’s used in the chorus & it’s catchy, so those are minor complaints. But after listening to Agony & BBS I’m going to be looking for things like that to make adjustments at the top of my rankings.

Grumpy Mike
I’d like to hear that “bullshit”. Lyrically this is my favorite song so far. It’s rage against the rage, and it’s catchy as fuck. I thought the blips & bloops were used well, and honestly I don’t care much about you not using the title in the song, but this is the 4th song out of 5 that’s going to find a home on my MP3 player...and little things will make a difference in the rankings at this rate. I honestly can’t find anything bad to say other than that. Do a little extra complaining in the forum this round to make up for my lack of complaints here. Great song.

Max Bombast
“Sisyphusin’” lol. Way to turn a proper noun into a verb. Loved the lyrics to this & the vocals were great. Good use of the title & the bloops were catchy & reminded me of a 16-bit fighter. The Bohemian Rhapsody quote at the end fits well & is a good way to wrap things up. You’ll be competing for a top spot again.

Merisan
BBS must be selling a lot of those devices… This started a bit slow for me, but I was enjoying the lyrics. When the chorus came around you got me. Head bobbin’, singin’ along...I was sold. Great hook. All the challenge requirements were checked, and the only negative I can come up with here is that it’s a bit too repetitive coming in around 4 minutes. Only 2 verses, and even though the chorus is catchy, you nearly ran it out of gas. Excellent work.

Nick Soma
This song starts to suck me in at times, but spits me out over & over. Every time I get to a line where you pause before the last 2 syllables you lose me. All the flow is lost, and it’s just so odd sounding at times. The song has it’s moments. The music is catchy enough at times & you check all the challenge boxes. The story isn’t bad either. But with an insanely good crop of songs thus far....you’re on the verge of being in my bottom 4.

Rachael Layne
There’s so much I like about this. You nail the performance, and the lyrics tell a great story. You check all the boxes for the challenges, but I think I’d actually like this more without the blip & bloops. When I here this, I picture a woman singing with her guitar kinda daydreaming about the past & thinking about her future. The lyrics don’t really connect to the chiptunes part of it, and the image I have in my head listening is different. That being said, they sounded fine, they weren’t distracting & I thought were used well. I just think I could like it more without. Either way, for me it’s your best song of the contest thus far, and a job well done. Oh, and I loved the line, “There’s no memory to save who you became the day you changed”.

The Sunday Colors
I think the time has come. I was wondering how far you could get with your limited production, and I think this might be it. Honestly I liked the song, it’s good story telling. You do guy with guitar really well. But in terms of the challenge this was weak. You nailed the title, but your blips & bloops didn’t really add much or feel like a part of the song. If the standard wasn’t so high this round, I could see you getting through another round...but this was a tough round. Good luck.

Vowl Sounds
Really enjoyed the music, and owl’s vocals. You paint a great picture & get across some very uneasy feelings while being pleasant to actually listen to. 1 thing that did bother me was the overlapping vocals. I can zone out & just enjoy the dreaminess of them, but at the same time you had me hanging on your every word. So when I start to struggle to hear the lyrics, it bugs me. Your vocals are very wispy, so they get lost easy when a lot is going on. Slow songs aren’t really my bag, but this IS a good song, still might be in my bottom 4.
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Re: Nur Ein XIV Round Four "No Memory"

Post by Chumpy » Wed May 29, 2019 3:36 pm

It's that time of week again... Aim your feedback cannons at: feedback@twojerksonevote.com.

INDEX: I have no memory of recording this.
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Re: Nur Ein XIV Round Four "No Memory"

Post by iVeg » Wed May 29, 2019 6:19 pm

Vom - Congrats on the win, and thanks for the nice comments. If I rerecord this, I'd totally use a 7 year old boy singer.
Cybronica - So glad you caught the 2nd verse imagery. I was afraid I was being too subtle.
Ryan and Chumpy - Right! My cousin's 85 year old Dutch grandfather. He was terrified. Much more than I was able to express.
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Re: Nur Ein XIV Round Four "No Memory"

Post by grumpymike » Wed May 29, 2019 6:26 pm

Chumpy wrote:
Wed May 29, 2019 3:36 pm
[*]00:01:04 - Beginning-of-podcast blathering
"I sound like a muppet. I'm never going to let that go."

A punk fan explained to me that you were trying to sing like Less Than Jake for that particular song. Please confirm or deny.
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Re: Nur Ein XIV Round Four "No Memory"

Post by Cybronica » Wed May 29, 2019 8:09 pm

Chumpy wrote: It’s that time of the week again...
01:18:05 - Lichen Throat
Paying it forward! ^_^

Also, yes, they were dragons... so the Zelda this is based is actually the latest game that is out for switch and basically plays like Skyrim with a unified ending. The premise being that you wake up in a cave after being asleep for 100 years after losing the world saving battle and now you have to go and try to save the world again. One of the main points is you don’t remember anything, so you have to travel around to literally find the memories you had forgotten.

And seriously, get thee to an emulator and play at the very least ocarina of time and twilight princess, arguably the two best in the franchise (I say with much bias).
iVeg wrote:
Wed May 29, 2019 6:19 pm
Cybronica - So glad you caught the 2nd verse imagery. I was afraid I was being too subtle.
Ryan and Chumpy - Right! My cousin's 85 year old Dutch grandfather. He was terrified. Much more than I was able to express.
I had a 13 going on 30 vibe from this at first, but now realizing that the main component is dementia, I find this less cute and more heart breaking. It’s a really great song.
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Re: Nur Ein XIV Round Four "No Memory"

Post by GlennCase » Wed May 29, 2019 8:32 pm

For anyone who might be curious - I sampled one of Mo's songs for the hook in our "No Memory".

His song "Eucharist" is one I have been known to listen to on repeat. I didn't think it was still online. Thankfully, it is!

https://soundcloud.com/mouyang/06-eucharist
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Re: Nur Ein XIV Round Four "No Memory"

Post by vowlvom » Thu May 30, 2019 12:45 am

Spintown wrote:
Wed May 29, 2019 1:47 pm
Vowl Sounds
Slow songs aren’t really my bag
Chumpy wrote:
Wed May 29, 2019 3:36 pm
[*]00:56:21 - Vowl Sounds
Two references to this being a "slow" song, but I had the DAW set to 170bpm! So IS this a slow song? Or is it a very fast song, that just happened to be entirely recorded at half-time? Food for thought.

Thanks for the kind words though, especially Ryan - I always love it when one of our songs really clicks with one (or both) of you guys!
Cybronica wrote:
Wed May 29, 2019 12:35 pm
And vom i am especially impressed by the mixing of all the various chiptune sounds, especially the various console work.
Thank you! Years of stockpiling chiptune synths and samples has finally paid off.
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Re: Nur Ein XIV Round Four "No Memory"

Post by owl » Thu May 30, 2019 8:20 am

iVeg wrote:
Wed May 29, 2019 6:19 pm
Ryan and Chumpy - Right! My cousin's 85 year old Dutch grandfather. He was terrified. Much more than I was able to express.
Thank you for explaining the reason for the Dutch references--I understood the dementia angle (which I loved, btw, I'll really try to get around to writing up my reviews this time around...) but the super-specific setting made me wonder if I was missing something else!
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Re: Nur Ein XIV Round Four "No Memory"

Post by owl » Thu May 30, 2019 8:32 am

Chumpy wrote:
Wed May 29, 2019 3:36 pm
[*]00:56:21 - Vowl Sounds
Thank you for the lovely review, it makes me really happy that you guys always get my lyrical references and that Ryan liked the A Sound of Thunder reference in particular--I was proud of that one! I had no idea about the movie... it looks awful, but I admit I am intrigued by this handsome fellow. I hope he's played by Ben Kingsley.

I also enjoyed hearing about Glenn Case's storied career as a video game champion, I had no idea! Brings back some memories... way back in another lifetime, I worked as a video game tester at Konami (I see that profile pic, Niveous! haha), and my boss there had originally gotten his job by being the world record holder for an arcade driving game back in the 80s (Pole Position). If I remember right, I think he played it for like 20 hours straight and drove with his feet for the first few hours to keep his arms from getting fatigued.
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Re: Nur Ein XIV Round Four "No Memory"

Post by Geech » Thu May 30, 2019 8:56 am

I don’t like explaining lyrics, but what with the compressed timeframe to judge and what not, I wanted to clarify something in the BSS track.

I thought about this song as a setup for a Twilight Zone episode. The narrator recounts mundane stories of annoyance in Rod Serling-style fashion to sell you memory-removal services of seemingly obvious value.

Chumpy complained that “pure as driven snow” is a cliche. He uses overwrought language. All intentional. This guy swims in cliches and highfalutin-speak.
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Re: Nur Ein XIV Round Four "No Memory"

Post by iVeg » Thu May 30, 2019 11:35 am

I'm sorry the specific details threw Ryan and Owl [and others] off. I wanted to contrast it with images from the new place, but realized he had no point of reference. This is like describing a character and giving her a name, then not mentioning her for the rest of the novel. Sorry!

Also, the Frisian language should have been "Frysk". "Fries" is the Dutch word.

This is the Waterpoort. The streets around that area are brick laid in a herringbone pattern.
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Re: Nur Ein XIV Round Four "No Memory"

Post by frankie big face » Thu May 30, 2019 12:12 pm

Chumpy wrote:
Wed May 29, 2019 3:36 pm
[*]00:24:26 - Frankie Big Face
Jeez guys, how do you square that review with ranking me 2nd and 4th from last? No sour grapes here, but I just don't get it. If I'm being eliminated I expect to be told how much I sucked.
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Re: Nur Ein XIV Round Four "No Memory"

Post by ujnhunter » Thu May 30, 2019 12:48 pm

frankie big face wrote:
Thu May 30, 2019 12:12 pm
Chumpy wrote:
Wed May 29, 2019 3:36 pm
[*]00:24:26 - Frankie Big Face
Jeez guys, how do you square that review with ranking me 2nd and 4th from last? No sour grapes here, but I just don't get it. If I'm being eliminated I expect to be told how much I sucked.
To be fair... when there is only 12 left... and 4 have to go... that's 1/3 of the entries so you don't have to suck to be eliminated at this point.
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Re: Nur Ein XIV Round Four "No Memory"

Post by frankie big face » Thu May 30, 2019 1:06 pm

ujnhunter wrote:
Thu May 30, 2019 12:48 pm
frankie big face wrote:
Thu May 30, 2019 12:12 pm
Chumpy wrote:
Wed May 29, 2019 3:36 pm
[*]00:24:26 - Frankie Big Face
Jeez guys, how do you square that review with ranking me 2nd and 4th from last? No sour grapes here, but I just don't get it. If I'm being eliminated I expect to be told how much I sucked.
To be fair... when there is only 12 left... and 4 have to go... that's 1/3 of the entries so you don't have to suck to be eliminated at this point.
Sure, but I got more (legitimate) criticism from a guy (Spintown) who had me in 2nd place. These were positive reviews coupled with very low rankings. Both said “I think he’s safe” but ranked me on the other side of “safe.” The more I talk about this, the sorer I sound. I’m not, but the judging is odd this year. Lots of people ranked at the top and bottom simultaneously, which is weird.
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Re: Nur Ein XIV Round Four "No Memory"

Post by grumpymike » Thu May 30, 2019 3:13 pm

frankie big face wrote:
Thu May 30, 2019 1:06 pm
Lots of people ranked at the top and bottom simultaneously, which is weird.
Sam said this was weird, too. I assure you, it is not. I'm pretty used to it happening to me from a particular judge. But here's the most egregious example I can find - see bgm's score below. Making polarizing music doesn't pay off. :)
Screen Shot 2019-05-30 at 4.57.42 PM.png
Screen Shot 2019-05-30 at 4.57.42 PM.png (452.32 KiB) Viewed 580 times
Anyway, sorry for jynxing you, Frank. I didn't think it was going to happen. This is how I feel right now:
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Re: Nur Ein XIV Round Four "No Memory"

Post by frankie big face » Thu May 30, 2019 4:16 pm

grumpymike wrote:
Thu May 30, 2019 3:13 pm
...words.
That’s really not my principal point. I’ve accepted that I may be ranked high by one judge and low by another. Having a more difficult time reconciling praiseful reviews and being ranked second and fourth to last.
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Re: Nur Ein XIV Round Four "No Memory"

Post by Lunkhead » Thu May 30, 2019 6:59 pm

I agree with Frank. Neutral to positive sounding reviews matched with extremely low rankings can be perplexing, at least for those of us who tend to wildly split the judges' opinions. That's just part of the game I guess. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
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Re: Nur Ein XIV Round Four "No Memory"

Post by mo » Thu May 30, 2019 7:37 pm

I have a whole spreadsheet on this
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