The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

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mkilly
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Re: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by mkilly » Thu Sep 19, 2019 9:58 am

vowlvom wrote:
Thu Sep 12, 2019 7:16 am
Had a first listen on my lunch break, this is a cracking fight! I'll write some reviews once I've had some more listens, but particularly loving the Don Mattingly's Mustache track - really good stuff.
hey thanks!
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Re: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by fluffy » Thu Sep 19, 2019 10:57 pm

HOLY SHIT MARCUS KELLIS MADE A TRACK

HOLY SHIT MARCUS KELLIS IS 32 NOW WHAT THE FUCK

AAAAA
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Re: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by ken » Fri Sep 20, 2019 8:11 am

fluffy wrote:
Thu Sep 19, 2019 10:57 pm
HOLY SHIT MARCUS KELLIS IS 32 NOW WHAT THE FUCK
Haha. I met up with him not too long ago and he is totally adulting.
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Re: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by crumpart » Sat Sep 21, 2019 6:14 am

Third cat
VOTE! Love the fade in, the drum build up and the bleep bloop sounds. One of my favourites this round.

Miscellaneous Owl
VOTE! Really like this. My one tiny nitpick is that the mix feels a little bit muddy, and I can't always make out the words you're singing.

Tron Air
VOTE! Has all my favourite bleep bloops. These are my production level hopes and dreams.

Don Mattingley's Moustache
This is pretty fun, but it's a little bit too Creepy Old Man for me to feel entirely comfortable.

Phlebia
The lyrics in this are really well paced. I like the fast paced delivery, but there's also a good amount of space around them. The instrumentation is a little boomier than I'd like it to be.

Kyle Rogers
There are many things about this that are right in my wheelhouse. It reminds me very strongly of something that I can't quite place. It'll come to me in about two weeks.

Jerkatorium
VOTE! Why do Americans like pop tarts so much? I like this a lot; it's super fun.

Pig Farmer Jr
The instrumentation in this sounds a little buried. The vocals sound pretty good to me but everything else is a bit muffled.

Glenn Case
I really like all the instrumentation in this but the lyrics and vocals aren't grabbing me. I love the last line.

Paco del Stinko
Love the backround vocals. The main vocal sounds too quiet.

Hoblit
This is pretty fun. My favourite line is "but I'm not feeling old fashioned", partially because it's clever and also because I really like old fashioneds.

Glennny
I want to dislike this because the lyrics are very creepy and make me highly uncomfortable, but it's so much fun musically that I can't. I think I'd be more ok with the lyrics if it weren't for the coda about asking the stripper home.

Tim Hinkle
I'm enjoying the harmonies in this but stylistically it's not my cup of tea.

Vom Vorton
VOTE! The vwoooom vwooooms are making me very happy. Please make more raps. I'm pretty jealous of people who can rap, as my accent precludes it.

Phillipso
I'd like a little more air in this. The mix feels a little claustrophobic.

Chthauhaus
I like this quite a lot. It's be interesting to hear the ooh ooh oohs about an octave higher.

Hot Pink Halo
This was my first go at mixing all alone instead of handing everything off to @toshiro to "make it sound good please". There's definite room for improvement, but I think I did an ok job. Also, I'm not a great singer at the best of times (I'm actively trying to improve) but my lack of skill in that department was compounded by ear pressure issues on the day I recorded. Literally couldn't tell what note I was singing until I listened back to my recordings, which made trying to do three part harmonies super fun! I'm pretty proud of my lyrics on this, especially "we move by each other with a violence of light". I had to google that to make sure I hadn't accidentally stolen it from someone.
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Re: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by gizo » Sat Sep 21, 2019 6:39 am

crumpart wrote:
Sat Sep 21, 2019 6:14 am
I'm pretty jealous of people who can rap, as my accent precludes it.
That utter rubbish. Our folk can rap like cockatoos.
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Re: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by crumpart » Sat Sep 21, 2019 6:46 am

gizo wrote:
Sat Sep 21, 2019 6:39 am
crumpart wrote:
Sat Sep 21, 2019 6:14 am
I'm pretty jealous of people who can rap, as my accent precludes it.
That utter rubbish. Our folk can rap like cockatoos.
Such a beautiful sounding bird.
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Re: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by Æpplês&vØdkã » Sat Sep 21, 2019 7:33 am

crumpart wrote:
Sat Sep 21, 2019 6:14 am
Phlebia: The instrumentation is a little boomier than I'd like it to be.
Ha, well yeah, I suppose my track doesn't really have much in the way of high end. The only instruments are a 5-string bass, drums, and a synth that mostly just plays a single note. I guess it'd be hard NOT to be boomy.

Also rap needs both more women and Irish accents, get on that!
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Re: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by crumpart » Sat Sep 21, 2019 8:15 am

Æpplês&vØdkã wrote:
Sat Sep 21, 2019 7:33 am
crumpart wrote:
Sat Sep 21, 2019 6:14 am
Phlebia: The instrumentation is a little boomier than I'd like it to be.
Ha, well yeah, I suppose my track doesn't really have much in the way of high end. The only instruments are a 5-string bass, drums, and a synth that mostly just plays a single note. I guess it'd be hard NOT to be boomy.

Also rap needs both more women and Irish accents, get on that!
Sadly I've only lived in Ireland for two and a half years, so I'm stuck with this Australian malarkey. My parents are very upset that I haven't developed a full blown Cork accent yet, so.
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Re: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by vowlvom » Sat Sep 21, 2019 8:31 am

crumpart wrote:
Sat Sep 21, 2019 6:14 am
Vom Vorton
VOTE! The vwoooom vwooooms are making me very happy. Please make more raps. I'm pretty jealous of people who can rap, as my accent precludes it.
Thank you! I'm back in a sort of new-wavey comfort zone for the next fight but I will consider it, I really like writing twisty lyrics with internal rhymes and stuff which kinda leads well into rap. I've kinda gone for laid back and jokey when rapping in the past but I took it more seriously this time.

I fully encourage you to try Australio-Irish rap!
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Re: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by owl » Sat Sep 21, 2019 10:21 pm

Upon hearing the title to this fight, I felt like I felt like I wanted a bunch of songs that sounded like the soundtrack to Xanadu, but unfortunately NOT ONE OF YOU delivered, not even me. Oh well. I actually got around to writing up reviews this time! Here are my many scattered thoughts:

Cthauhaus: I really enjoyed this one! I'm a sucker for sparse moody gothy tunes like this. Really liked the ambience, and the bass, and the lead vocal performance, and that almost abrasive lead guitar that takes its time. Catchy chorus! My two quibbles: the oohs are pretty rough pitch-wise and it's distracting to me (particularly the first one--they seem to get better) particularly in a really minimalistic arrangement like this. Lyrically, "she was a platinum blonde with a mischievous smile" fits musically but feels out of place to me, I feel like the word "mischievous" just doesn't quite belong in a brooding song like this alongside all the black roses and pale angels. Too playful! Too happy! (I mentioned elsewhere the lyrics remind me of "The Chauffeur" by Duran Duran, which is generally a plus, I like the imagery for the most part) But I won't hold it against you.

Don Mattingly's Mustache: This song is a lot of fun, I really love the melody in the chorus and the kind of playful sloppy energy of it all. Nice whistling! It reminds me of The Magnetic Fields' "The Luckiest Guy on the Lower East Side," but, like, if you gave Stephin Merritt some antidepressants and took him to a jamboree before he wrote it. A few of your phrases sound really awkward, like "you're inviting over Brad" and "cannot SURmise", but since the song is pretty loosey-goosey stylistically I'm not sure that matters. I'm going to second furrypedro's critique/analysis of the content on all counts, I'm kind of put off by the whole "well it's OK to love me but if you love all these other people you're a slut!" kinda thing, unclear why the protagonist feels like he's so special. Also, I'm not really sure why that vaguely bothers me instead of just thinking it's funny, which is clearly the spirit in which it's intended, perhaps it is just me being a HUMORLESS FEMINIST, but I think it's because of the kind of judgey tone of the narrator? Also, not sure what the liquid starshine love has to do with the rest of the subject matter, it sounds good, but seems kind of wedged in there if you start to think about the lyrics too much.

Glenn Case: Ooh, "I taste the cosmos on my lips" is a great line. There are some very cool chord progression things happening in this song that I really appreciated. I like the combo of the dirty bass synth and the slightly metallic e-piano, and where the drums pick up around 1:49. And I like the guitar when it's by itself, but found the tone and/or level of it sort of distracting in the parts where it's going along under the vocals, felt a bit like they were fighting for attention. As a whole, I really liked a lot of the individual elements, but somehow the sum of the parts wasn't quite enough for me, it felt like it kind of dragged and didn't really come together.

Glennny: I love the juxtaposition of style and content here, and it's an ambitious vocal arrangement, but execution-wise the harmonies feel just a little off-key and that reallllly bugs me in a song like this. I like the guitar solo, but I'm not sure it really fits (inasmuch as anything really fits in a doo-wop song about a stripper.) A few lines felt odd to me, like the greenback line, or "I have some bucks," which sounds a bit "hello fellow humans" to me; and "you imprinted on me" (I think you have this backwards? usually a baby goose or whatever would imprint on its mother, or a human. So it should be "I imprinted on you," surely?) I did laugh at the "help you through college" line and I liked your interpretation of the liquid starshine as body glitter. Although this song also touches on the whole "you have so many guys" theme, and is a kind of sad/creepy dynamic, it didn't really bother me the way it did in Don Mattingly's Mustache's song for whatever reason, I guess maybe because it feels like the narrator is less judgmental? Or maybe it's that, unlike that song, you're not really supposed to identify with the narrator. I think.

Hoblit: This is a nice, mellow, feel-good song, I really enjoyed listening to it--I like the Spanish guitar strums and I LOVE those fluid little vocal runs in the "starshine, liquid starshine" line--overall the vocals are great! You had a lot of subtle little touches of hoarseness or vibrato that worked really well to give it texture and personality. The main complaint I had was just that it doesn't really seem to change up at all aside from the shoutier vocals that come in later, so I felt like it would have been more enjoyable at half its current length; it started to feel kind of samey by the end of the song.

Hot Pink Halo: I love the dreamy, twinkly, lo-fi feel of this, reminds me of the Pastels. Couldn't really make out the lyrics in the actual song very well but reading through them on the thread, they're some of my favorites from this fight--some really wonderful, poetic lines, like "a violence of light" or "our hearts beat together like hammers on strings / as we push and we pull and you play and I sing". I love the binary star concept, and it fits so well with the ethereal, swaying lullaby feel of the song. I wish the vocals were a bit clearer (funny that this was also your criticism of mine), and I would have liked more of a change or evolution in the arrangement, because this also started to feel sort of long despite basically enjoying what was going on. But overall I really liked it!

Jerkatorium: Now I feel like I'm saying this about half the songs here, but this is really bouncy and catchy and fun! And very well arranged, produced, and crafted--it never seemed to drag or feel tedious, and I particularly love those high little backing vocal "oohs" and the honky-tonk piano. "Anesthesia plus aphasia" is one of my favorite phrases from this fight and I really enjoyed all the wordplay with the numbers in verse 2. That being said... honestly, I'm not totally sure I understand the chorus, it seems like the verses/bridge are all going on about how the protagonist doesn't give a shit about what substances he's ingesting as long as he can get royally fucked up, but then the first three lines of the chorus seem to be pooh-poohing various alcohols as not... healthy enough? tasty enough? "Bathtub gin can tend to age ya," but y'know GLUE and FORMALDEHYDE are just great...? It all rhymes and scans well though. (As long as you're mispronouncing Appalachia, haha, but I'm from California, so what do I know)

Kyle Rogers: I like your guitar playing a lot! I'm not crazy about the vocals... the high note sounds quite flat to me, which grates on me, and in the louder parts the delivery reminds me of that Mumford-esque millennial-indie shouting that I'm just not into. I like the imagery of the walls closing in--that's a great opening line--contrasted with the lines about the ocean and the wind, but a lot of the other lyrics seem sort of generic to me, so it ends up feeling a bit long at over 4 minutes with no big changes in arrangement or tune.

miscellaneous owl: it me! A few experiments... as Vom noticed, this is probably the noisiest track I've made to date. I didn't want the production to sound too clean, so I ended up sending the vocals through an ampsim to give them some interesting crunchiness aka ~shitty aesthetic~, which, judging from the comments, seems to really not be up everyone's alley, but on the whole, I felt happy with it stylistically. (However it seems I cannot get away from Dolores O'Riordan comparisons no matter how grungy I try to make the vocals sound, heh. I have covered both Liz Phair and The Cranberries in tribute bands in past years, so well spotted, @neutronflow and @Æpplês&vØdkã... maybe I should cover Superchunk next Halloween because of @furrypedro.) Also tried double-tracking and hard-panning the guitars to embiggen the sound a bit, and played real bass instead of keyboard bass for the first time, which is not an entirely impressive feat in this song, but I'm always happy if I feel like I'm learning new things. I swear to God this does have three-part harmonies, although they're pretty low in the mix and possibly imperceptible, again in an attempt to get out of my usual wheelhouse. I realized after submitting this that the lyric "flies into the sky with them" is a bit ambiguous about what "them" is supposed to refer to. It was supposed to be "the cool kids," although I realized it could sound like it referred to crows or wings, depending on your reading of the sentence, but I'm not totally sure how to fix that. If anyone was paying attention to the lyrics, I'm curious to know how you interpreted that.

Paco del Stinko: My husband wandered in when I was listening to these tracks so he heard and commented on a few of them, including this one, which he described as having "childlike exuberance and joy, but also childlike hyperactivity and distraction". The weird loungey doo-bee-doo harmonies in the first half were entertaining and I'm glad you posted the lyrics--they are full of psychedelic goodness. But really my favorite part was where you get into that creepy breakdown around 1:45 and then open up into the slightly unsettling outro. I really loved the whole back half of the song after the "when we were ten" part, but the first part of the song was something where I admired it, but it didn't quite resonate with me. Overall a very cool and interesting song.

Phillipso: Ah I love the stuff happening with the guitars, all that angular reversed business is sooooo cool! I think the vocals were pretty good but felt mixed a bit high and dry, my husband commented they seemed like they were sitting on top of the mix a bit, we both found that distracting. (Conversely, I wanted the organ a bit louder...) The bass playing is good but the bassline felt out of place to me, kind of too bouncy and busy, like the bassist wanted to be in a funk band but accidentally ended up in Polvo, particularly in the dropouts where it's really noticeable. I'm still unsure how I feel about that major key chorus but I think I like it? It feels jarring, but also interesting, so I keep having kind of mixed feelings about whether it's actually pleasing, but I think in the end I'm going to come down in favor of it.

Phlebia: This has a very cool krautrocky, hypnotic kind of dark post-punk feel. It was hard to pay attention to the lyrics as I was listening through, but reading through them, I loved them--so many lurid, hallucinatory images--I especially liked "Clouds like glaciers clashing brightly / Fabric breathes fluorescent lighting." I also really liked your arrangement, the dark synths give it an excellent oppressive atmosphere, although I think given the style of the song, it would have benefitted from a cleaner production, it felt a bit too heavy and muddy and the solo at the end should have been a bit louder as you mentioned (I didn't notice any of the execution/flubbed note things you mentioned in your notes though). The melody in the chorus is great too. I didn't really like the "What to be..." part with all the growly metal vocal fry business, the rest of the song had me all like "yeah!! Darkness!! Drugs!!" but I had a hard time taking it seriously at that bit, it felt over the top and kind of silly. Though the instrumental after that is pretty sweet. I know my husband was listening at this point but unfortunately I don't remember his comments, I think he just said the drums sounded like krautrock.

Pigfarmer Jr.: My husband said "I could totally hear this one being on the radio!" (That was before we got to the chicken and kazoo part, though, I think that might be a bit strange for mainstream radio.) I like the melody and playing on this one--it's catchy! I think I'd mix the vocals a bit lower and with a bit more reverb, the way they're sitting in the mix right now has a slightly karaoke feel to me. I wasn't crazy about the lyrics--not because of the swears, but it just sort of confused me... the parts about the duck and the skunk made me feel like it should be a children's song, but the parts about God getting drunk and high definitely did not, and then the melody and arrangement sounded to me like it should have been a melancholy country song about a breakup or something, so I just ended up in this kind of cognitive dissonance headspace that kept me from getting into it if I listened to the words at all. I appreciate the fact that the lyrics are quite weird and original, but in terms of general enjoyment of the tune, they took me out of it a bit. But listening to just the music was very enjoyable.

Third Cat: This was great, I really enjoyed the build of the instrumental with the swooshy phased synths and slow entrance of the drums and lead riff. That main high riff has such a beautiful sad melody. Unlike @vowlvom, I just loved the guitar lead at the end, I wish the song had gone on longer at that point because it sounds so pretty and full when everything is going together at the end. I don't usually find myself super into instrumentals in Songfight, but I really enjoyed this one! My only minor complaint: it felt like it lost steam for a few seconds there at 1:50 before the lead comes back in, less like a deliberate pause and more like you just forgot where you were going for a second.

Tim Hinkle: My husband said "this sounds like a 70's singer-songwriter." It does remind me of Cat Stevens or something. Wonderful vocals, including probably the best harmonies of the bunch, you have such a nice deep rich voice and I love the places where you hold notes long enough for your vibrato to come in. The main thing I noticed about the mix: I'm not sure what that squelchy instrument is in the background, maybe bass with effects on it? It sounds kind of like a jaw harp? I found it intensely distracting from the nice vocals--I wish you hadn't put it all over the place and so high in the mix. The high lead guitar towards the end also felt a bit too loud relative to the vocals. The outro feels really messy to me, like all the elements are competing for attention without listening to each other, but also I really love the lyrics in that part--"The stars shine in the sky at night / they shine inside me in the day". Overall I think the melody is great and the song is really pretty, but a bit like my minor complaint about Cthauhaus's song, I will say that to me, I feel like "a crystalline derivative" and "chemicals" don't feel like phrases that really fit into this song, genre-wise, even if they scan perfectly well.

Tron Air: Man, there are so many good lyrics this fight, I really liked these ones as well--the image of the paddle dipping into the water and the moon like a balloon--*chef's kiss*. The sparkly synth arpeggios are lovely and there are so many wonderful layers building on each other and echoing. Some of the vocals take me out of it a little bit, the paddle verse feels slightly rough compared to the smooth, produced sound of the rest of the song, and the "flying" line in particular sounds strangled. I guess my main complaint about the song is that it has a lovely ambience, but it doesn't feel like it goes anywhere dynamically, which I think is kind of a genre thing but also left me feeling a little cold despite liking the various elements of the song individually, and the overall production.

Vom Vorton: The minimalistic introduction makes this really stand out--that weedy drumbeat and the slowly building synth grab your attention, and the repetition in the first couple of lines + the image of the people waking up and screaming together before calmly going back to sleep is great. The flow of the "we fled a dying world" verse is particularly pleasing to me--the "kill off our brain cells" rhythm is excellent. And also it's cool to hear you pulling off something a bit out of your usual comfort zone! My main complaint is that I'd prefer a bit more going on in the verses--usually the hip-hop tracks I like tend to have a sampled hook or little keyboard riff or something happening for a bit more melodic interest throughout, and this felt sort of empty to me with just the droney synth and drums. Also, as you mentioned, the sung chorus vocals are a bit wabi-sabi, but I guess if that kind of thing is good enough for ODB then it's good enough for VV. The MIDI-guitar-synth solo bit is so cool, I'm glad you explained what that was!

This is tough, it was a great batch of songs and I liked things about all of them, so I am frankly not sure yet who I'm going to vote for because there were so many good entries, but I guess I should make up my mind very soon since we're already technically past the submission deadline for the next fight and I have spent all this time thinking about all the songs! Nice work, everyone, if I were Paul Hollywood on the Great British Baking Show, I would go around dramatically shaking EVERYONE'S hand for this round and staring intensely into your soul with my blue Husky dog eyes.
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Re: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by owl » Sat Sep 21, 2019 10:25 pm

crumpart wrote:
Sat Sep 21, 2019 6:46 am
gizo wrote:
Sat Sep 21, 2019 6:39 am
crumpart wrote:
Sat Sep 21, 2019 6:14 am
I'm pretty jealous of people who can rap, as my accent precludes it.
That utter rubbish. Our folk can rap like cockatoos.
Such a beautiful sounding bird.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fZqXCaPTNtc
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Re: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by crumpart » Sat Sep 21, 2019 11:14 pm

owl wrote:
Sat Sep 21, 2019 10:25 pm
crumpart wrote:
Sat Sep 21, 2019 6:46 am
gizo wrote:
Sat Sep 21, 2019 6:39 am


That utter rubbish. Our folk can rap like cockatoos.
Such a beautiful sounding bird.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fZqXCaPTNtc
Real life lol!
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Re: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by crumpart » Sat Sep 21, 2019 11:32 pm

Æpplês&vØdkã wrote:
Fri Sep 13, 2019 7:06 pm
Something about the 3/4 time and dreamy harmonies and twinkly synth and major 7ths every where makes me extraordinarily happy. Do you ever listen to Broadcast? This kind of reminds me of some of their deeper cuts. I love the minor part halfway through.
I’m not sure who Broadcast are, but am definitely going to check them out. I also just wanted to mention that it isn’t a twinkly synth you’re hearing, it’s a Portuguese Cavaquinho that I bought on holiday a few weeks ago, which, ¡shock horror! Is basically the grandmother to the modern day ukulele. The main differences are that it’s got steel strings and the fretboard is flat to the soundboard. There are a few different tunings traditionally, and currently mine is set G G B D. I’ve named her Whitney after our Airbnb hosts random Whitney Houston shrines.
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Re: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by Æpplês&vØdkã » Sun Sep 22, 2019 4:02 am

crumpart wrote:
Sat Sep 21, 2019 11:32 pm
Æpplês&vØdkã wrote:
Fri Sep 13, 2019 7:06 pm
Something about the 3/4 time and dreamy harmonies and twinkly synth and major 7ths every where makes me extraordinarily happy. Do you ever listen to Broadcast? This kind of reminds me of some of their deeper cuts. I love the minor part halfway through.
I’m not sure who Broadcast are, but am definitely going to check them out. I also just wanted to mention that it isn’t a twinkly synth you’re hearing, it’s a Portuguese Cavaquinho that I bought on holiday a few weeks ago, which, ¡shock horror! Is basically the grandmother to the modern day ukulele. The main differences are that it’s got steel strings and the fretboard is flat to the soundboard. There are a few different tunings traditionally, and currently mine is set G G B D. I’ve named her Whitney after our Airbnb hosts random Whitney Houston shrines.
If you're going to check them out, I suggest "Valerie" and "The Be Colony" as good starting points, if only because those are the tracks where I think your overall aesthetics overlap quite a bit.

That's good to know that that isn't a synth! I'd not heard of that instrument before, but I'll go on a Wikipedia excursion to read more about them!
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Re: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by Æpplês&vØdkã » Sun Sep 22, 2019 4:15 am

owl wrote:
Sat Sep 21, 2019 10:21 pm

Phlebia: This has a very cool krautrocky, hypnotic kind of dark post-punk feel. It was hard to pay attention to the lyrics as I was listening through, but reading through them, I loved them--so many lurid, hallucinatory images--I especially liked "Clouds like glaciers clashing brightly / Fabric breathes fluorescent lighting.
That stanza in particular was inspired by real life events, namely an outdoor field rave in which a dense bank of fog rolled in a little bit after midnight and the whole area was engulfed in a hazy mist of crazy lighting and heavy bass and hardly anyone could see what was going on. Not that most people there knew what was going on to begin with, given the nature of the event.

Anyway, the dark post-punk vibe was exactly what I was trying to go for and I'm happy to see someone use that genre descriptor! Stylistically I started off trying to make something along the lines of The Cure or Clan of Xymox ("A Forest" and "A Day" were in the back of my head throughout the process), but kind of got carried away with that middle section. But isn't that what SongFight is for? :D I'm glad you liked it! I tried to make the production a little bit cleaner on my Pocket Full Of Bones entry, but I guess "the judges" will decide if I succeeded.
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Re: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by jb » Sun Sep 22, 2019 8:25 am

owl wrote:
Sat Sep 21, 2019 10:21 pm
Don Mattingly's Mustache: I'm going to second furrypedro's critique/analysis of the content on all counts, I'm kind of put off by the whole "well it's OK to love me but if you love all these other people you're a slut!" kinda thing, unclear why the protagonist feels like he's so special. Also, I'm not really sure why that vaguely bothers me instead of just thinking it's funny, which is clearly the spirit in which it's intended, perhaps it is just me being a HUMORLESS FEMINIST, but I think it's because of the kind of judgey tone of the narrator?
Thanks for the thoughtful critiques— I know how long it takes and i appreciate it! I had some thoughts on the part above that I wanted to share for your, and whoever else’s reaction. I agree with all of your musical and prosody critiques.

It’s interesting that here on songfight we instinctively analyze the intentions of the songwriter rather than attempting to relate. I dunno about you but I switch off between modes— sometimes I’ll analyze what I think the writer is trying to make me feel (like “Firework”), sometimes I’ll analyze what I think the writer is saying (anything by Taylor Swift), but it’s when i fall in love with a song that I stop analyzing and start relating (Bruce Springsteen).

To me these lyrics always sounded like a fool who is willfully misreading a situation. Despite all evidence, they keep trying because they’re just that infatuated. Maybe promises were made, but nothing is hidden by their crush— it all seems above-board to the extent that the narrator can make a list. It is creepy that this narrator who wants someone all to themselves would continue a courtship despite the existing presence of a boyfriend. But the tables then turned!

Gender is never stated, so is anyone who listens assuming that the antagonist is female? Does it change how you react if the singer’s crush is male?

Where does the sense of judging come from? It sounds to me like the protagonist’s insecurity— someone who desperately wants to know “why aren’t I enough for you?” Who is seeking a monogamous relationship, but fell in love with someone who is either poly or not interested in settling down at this point in their life. Who definitely wants the antagonist all to themselves. I don’t hear anything other than possessiveness. But maybe with my perspective, I wouldn’t.

These lyrics feel like a couple of my late teen relationships. People hot for each other but not at all synchronized in their status, goals, or philosophies.
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Re: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by owl » Sun Sep 22, 2019 10:26 am

jb wrote:
Sun Sep 22, 2019 8:25 am
owl wrote:
Sat Sep 21, 2019 10:21 pm
Don Mattingly's Mustache: I'm going to second furrypedro's critique/analysis of the content on all counts, I'm kind of put off by the whole "well it's OK to love me but if you love all these other people you're a slut!" kinda thing, unclear why the protagonist feels like he's so special. Also, I'm not really sure why that vaguely bothers me instead of just thinking it's funny, which is clearly the spirit in which it's intended, perhaps it is just me being a HUMORLESS FEMINIST, but I think it's because of the kind of judgey tone of the narrator?
Thanks for the thoughtful critiques— I know how long it takes and i appreciate it! I had some thoughts on the part above that I wanted to share for your, and whoever else’s reaction. I agree with all of your musical and prosody critiques.

It’s interesting that here on songfight we instinctively analyze the intentions of the songwriter rather than attempting to relate. I dunno about you but I switch off between modes— sometimes I’ll analyze what I think the writer is trying to make me feel (like “Firework”), sometimes I’ll analyze what I think the writer is saying (anything by Taylor Swift), but it’s when i fall in love with a song that I stop analyzing and start relating (Bruce Springsteen).

To me these lyrics always sounded like a fool who is willfully misreading a situation. Despite all evidence, they keep trying because they’re just that infatuated. Maybe promises were made, but nothing is hidden by their crush— it all seems above-board to the extent that the narrator can make a list. It is creepy that this narrator who wants someone all to themselves would continue a courtship despite the existing presence of a boyfriend. But the tables then turned!

Gender is never stated, so is anyone who listens assuming that the antagonist is female? Does it change how you react if the singer’s crush is male?

Where does the sense of judging come from? It sounds to me like the protagonist’s insecurity— someone who desperately wants to know “why aren’t I enough for you?” Who is seeking a monogamous relationship, but fell in love with someone who is either poly or not interested in settling down at this point in their life. Who definitely wants the antagonist all to themselves. I don’t hear anything other than possessiveness. But maybe with my perspective, I wouldn’t.

These lyrics feel like a couple of my late teen relationships. People hot for each other but not at all synchronized in their status, goals, or philosophies.
So this is interesting because I actually did think about whether I was misidentifying the nature of the relationship (as I was thinking about the Magnetic Fields song I referenced, which was written by a gay man) but eventually was like "nah, this is TOTALLY a toxic hetero relationship dynamic!"... but yeah, OK, non-straight people can totally break down stereotypes about how they're open-minded or whatever, and be jealous and judgmental just like the straights.

Anyway, for me, I think the main thing that affects is my self-deprecating dismissal of my own opinion. I think the rest of my discomfort about it holds no matter the gender of the people referenced in the song. Although in that case I guess it's less "symptom of a culture of systemic patriarchy" and more "individual case study."

Maybe part of this reaction is the tradition of creepy possessive songs being taken totally seriously and romantically (Sarah Mclachlan's "Possession," The Police's "Every Breath You Take", both about stalkers) because it's credible that that's just a normal way for love to be. So when you get a song that dives into this in a tongue-in-cheek way, I think there can be this kind of ambiguity about how it's interpreted, and how seriously to take it/how much the listener should identify with the narrator, that makes me uncomfortable. Weezer's "No One Else" or The Crystals' "He Hit Me (And It Felt Like a Kiss)" are pretty over-the-top. I don't think this song is that over-the-top.

I get your point about reading it as an unreliable narrator, narrator-is-a-fool type of story, and if I think about it that way I have very different feelings about it, but I think for me, my instinctive reaction was that you were probably supposed to identify with the poor narrator whose crush is running around with a bunch of other men and women, whatta cuck, and then that line "why do you got so many guys," which is the part that sounds the most judgmental to me, I guess.

This has been your weekly episode of "owl overthinks things all the time and is no fucking fun," tune in again next week!

I could write a whole other essay about the whole analysis-of-intentions thing but I have to go wash my hair (I actually do) and go meet a friend. But yeah it's very interesting how we do that. Most recently I was talking to Vom over email about "Once Upon a Time In Hollywood" and how I thought there was a LOT of interesting metaphorical stuff going on in there but I wasn't really sure if Tarantino had intended for any of that or if he just wanted to make a fun murder romp. (So then do I have my head up my ass for looking into the metaphorical stuff that the director never intended?)

(Also, I just realized that i didn't comment on anything about the parts you were responsible for in this one, sorry jb :) No news is good news? The production and arrangement worked well, nice dynamics with the dropout before the outro, I maybe wanted to hear a bit more guitar in the mix but clearly I didn't feel strongly enough about that to comment on it the first time.)
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Re: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by Chumpy » Mon Sep 23, 2019 8:24 pm

So after a long hiatus, the Jerks are back reviewing songs in podcast form!

Here is how you can get in on this UNBELIEVABLE FREE OFFER: Keep your feedback to yourself.

INDEX:
Let it shine, let it shine!
"How did these fuckin' guys get signed? Bring on the Beach Boys meets Ween." --boltoph
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Re: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by thirdcatmusic » Mon Sep 23, 2019 9:22 pm

Nice to have y'all back. and great to hear from Paco! sorry about the (mostly) instrumental.
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Re: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by Lunkhead » Mon Sep 23, 2019 9:59 pm

Jerkatorium doesn't just have a review podcast. They also won the fight!
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Re: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by gizo » Mon Sep 23, 2019 10:50 pm

Congratulations, jerks!

That was a fun fight - thanks everyone who contributed!
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Re: The Stars Are Melting! (Liquid Starshine Reviews)

Post by glennny » Tue Sep 24, 2019 1:29 am

Good Job Jerkatorium!

Hxaro del Stinko

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