Better use lube (In the Tank reviews)

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reve
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Re: Better use lube (In the Tank reviews)

Post by reve » Thu Oct 16, 2008 12:42 pm

Hi Friends. This is the first half, alphabetically.

A. Wreist.
I like wide guitars, and your guitars are wide. I thought I was going to have to dig out a lighter for a sing-along chorus at .35, but that turned out not to be the case. Lacking the super punch of chorus, a second, slightly varied rhythm guitar part I think would be beneficial. The stop at 2.50ish is well executed and achieves what it should.

Boltoph.
Good, right? You know that. The dichotomy is a little strong here between the high singing & hand drums, the rock that is brought in at 1:30, and the jazzyjammyness that comes a minute or so later. It winds up being kinda scattershotish. For me, the first section was the most compelling. My mind thinks subbing out the hand drums for glitchy clicks and whizzes would make it even better, but that might be because I did just buy those spiffy Radiohead vinyl reissues.

Chadderandom Abyss.
This does indeed come across as random. Good, compelling random is really hard to do. I think the better random has harder, more abrupt edges between the sections. See Fiery Furnaces.

Chumlords.
FUCKING AWESOME. Only comment is that it coulda been a little shorter.

Cornhuskers.
As someone who listens a crap load of records, the problem with fake vinyl noise is that most of plugins or whatever just put noise over the otherwise crispy digital recording. It doesn't actually make it sound like it's on a record... it just sounds like you're playing a run out groove along with your music. And the skipping at the end is bad. It kind of... ruins it. That said, your song overall was pretty good and your yodeling was awesome.

EPP.
Good on you for a Rikki Lake reference.

Ford's Theatre Disaster.
This is pretty frickin' awesome as well. You should use a real bass. That's my only criticism, really. No, I can say having the guitars hit together and harder in the chorus would be good, too.

Hand Formula.
This is _extraordinarily_ awesome -- my favorite of the fight, by a long shot and a half. I can't tell whether the timing should be tightened up or if that's a large part of the charm.

theHipCola.
I think every week we should have a "RawwwCK!" award. Were there such things as a RawwwCK award, you would win this week, certainly. My only complaint would be that the resonant filter squiggles strike me as superfluous.

J. Krueger.
I think as far as -songs- go, this was one of the best this week. From a production standpoint, pop songs like this typically feature wicked tight timing. I hear the electric & acoustic rhythm guitars going in either ear. Spectrally, it's fuller" than just an acoustic, which is probably why you did it. But they're slightly off, and it winds up detracting from the song.

J Robertson et al.
This was gooooood.....

Leaf.
Now, I'm certainly in no place to criticize low vocals, but I think the devilharmonies probably coulda been skipped. At first I thought they were cute and giggled, but then they sounded more out of place than out of place and cute, y'know?

Max the Cat.
Awesome. If you made a flash video to accompany this, people would pass it around at work.

MC Eric B.
This was a good direction to go, lyrically. But your production aesthetic continues to constrain you. It seems like armed with a palate of freeware VSTis and Reaper or something you could knock out a song with a very diverse and modern set of sounds.

Melvin.
Melvin, I give you a big two thumbs up for putting heart into your rap career as rapper. I feel the synth strings work pretty well -- not having them come across as trite is a tough gig, and I think you pulled it off.
-- reve mosquito.
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Re: Better use lube (In the Tank reviews)

Post by nyjm » Thu Oct 16, 2008 2:54 pm

Lots of solid entries in this fight.

Andrew Reist
+++ guit tone +++
+++ riff +++
/// this offering has a nice hook, a component sometimes missing from your entries: good job ///
--- some of the vox in the bridge sound flat ---

Boltoph
+++ awesome intro tones +++
+++ dynamism +++
--- the jazzy outro seems a little mismatched with the rest ---

The Chadderandom Abyss
--- meandering ---
--- nasal falsetto ---
/// the "rules" of conventional songwriting are there for a reason; defy them at your own peril ///

Chumlords
--- dial down the vox; the telephone-like effect makes it grating: less is more ---
--- "mothers, hide your sons" ---
--- overused, cliché reverb echo effect ---

The Cornhuskers
/// i'm a sucker for the old record effect; however, it feels pasted onto this mix. the guitar and vox are too clean ///
+++ fun hillbilly tune +++
--- the "stuck" bit at the end goes on about twice as long as necessary ---

Emergency Pizza Party
--- i've heard this song before; it was more fun the first time ---

Ford's Theater Disaster
+++ this song meets my expectations of "rock" +++
--- the lead guit on the right needs to do something more inventive during the verse ---
/// i wish i could get that "bass" solo to be more prominent without clipping the hell out of everything ///

The Hand Formula
--- that $5 synth is really annoying, as is the empty bucket drum ---
+++ the melody is interesting +++
--- the singing is out of time ---

thehipcola
+++ RAWK ! +++
--- the bridge section needs some work on the prosody: the rhythm is forced rather than a counterpoint ---
/// i have to admit, when I first read the lyrics you posted, i kind of rolled my eyes at the "I'm in PAIN!" chorus; but now you have that stuck in my head and that's a great thing: awesome delivery ///

Jan Krueger
+++ this is a great use of irony with dark, dark lyrics and a happy tune +++
/// the harmony vox become a little unrelenting (given the theme, perhaps that intentional) ///

Jeff Robertson and the Neo-Candylanders
/// reminds me of Johnny Cash's Country Boy ///
+++ awesome solo +++

leaf62
+++ dynamism +++
/// i dunno, maybe i'm just tired and cynical at the moment, but there's nothing about this that grabs me; it all sounds good, just doesn't stand up and wave its arms ///

Max the Cat
+++ fun and different = vote +++

MC Eric B
/// you need to explore some different ways of singing ///
+++ lyrical scenario +++

Melvin
+++ background noises +++
/// what's great about your recent stint of songs is bringing hip-hop back to its political origins; this is a genre of songwriting that began as political statement and your form fits perfectly with the message ///
--- that said, the metaphor here is a little belabored and obvious ---

The North American Self-Assurance
+++ groove +++
/// reminds me of Matthew Sweet ///
+++ "If you call my mom and dad, don't tell them it was vodka I had" ! +++

PiGPEN
--- "singing" ---
--- boring samples ---

Plankton
???

Professor Obscure, M.C.
--- vox are too quiet / blips are too loud ---
--- for rap, this lacks prosody ---
--- boring ---

R. Mosquito
/// channels (good) Metallica ///
--- the lyrics and guitar riff are too close in both rhythm and pitch ---

Ross Durand
+++ another moment of musical irony: laid back tune with a touch of acrid bitterness +++
--- a nice melody, but the lyrics are a little too topical ---

someguycallednoel
/// that's some odd panning ///
+++ chorus melody and harmony +++
/// I don't know if the doubled solo works; it's kind of distracting ///

Steve Durand
--- the banjo needs to be crisper ---
+++ cute +++

Sven Mullet
+++ rockin' +++
/// did you steal that lead solo guitar tone from GnR? if so, good job! ///
+++ breakdown +++

teststests
/// sounds like an (male) Indigo Girls demo ///
+++ melody +++
--- 'meh' arrangement ---

tnk08
--- non-song ---

Todd McHatton
+++ groove +++
+++ vox harmonies +++
--- needs to be tighter ---

Tollbooth Jamboree
--- non-song ---
/// still kind cool in an esoteric way; the groan needs to be dialed down ///

Tonetripper
+++ screaming +++
+++ dynamism +++

The Weakest Suit
--- "shake" ---
/// this is a good song, but it's present state is under-developed ///

WeerSkrood
--- jumbled and boring; this is a composition, not a song ---
+++ nice bits at the end +++
"You sound like the ghost of David Bowie." - SchlimminyCricket | it was a pleasure to burn | my website | Juliet's Happy Dagger
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Re: Better use lube (In the Tank reviews)

Post by thehipcola » Fri Oct 17, 2008 8:08 am

Final set here we go......

Boltoph
Digs:
Great guitar work and tones, killer Boltoph voice, nice ADD arrangement. Another super talented multi-instrumentalist with a great voice for each.
Don’ts: I find the vocals are hard to make out in some of the crunchy parts.
Overall: I love the many hats this song wears, and I love the way it roams between them all. This gets a front row seat on my ipod, along with all the other Boltoph on there, and it’s teaching all the other possible vote’s how to use a wake board in the vote pool.

Jeff Robertson and the Neo-Candylanders
Digs:
I like the lyrical take on the title. Nice. I like the character singing this tune. This song has a great charm to it. Backing Ahhhh’s are great. Nice lead tone and performance. Nice ending.
Don’ts: I don’t really have much to gripe about here.
Overall: Sweet. I like liking this song. Definitely on the ipod. Little fishy hits the vote tank.

Ford's Theater Disaster
Digs:
I like the snotty bass line. Dual guitars are nice with different tones.
Don’ts: I find the vocals to be tune-less kind of.... lots of character, but not a clear melody impression.
Overall: I like most things that rock, and this is no exception, just wishing the vocals had better presence and a more convincing melody. This does not get to the ipod. But I do like the ending. Tight.

Erotic Pizza Party
Digs:
Nice production. Nice name drop, Bonafide.  I like the grooves. Nice flows.
Don’ts: It’s a little crispy with the high frequencies. Needs a bridge or something. Verse/chorus/verse/chorus only gets you so far.
Overall: fun tune to listen to...but not more than a couple of times. Well done for the most part.


Mc Eric B
Digs:
This is a decent tune. Good sense of melody here. Lyrics are obvious but well written for the song. The one looped part is pleasant.
Don’ts: Stretch out! You’ve used the basic music of this tune over and over and over from beginning to tend. Add instrumentation, voices, play with arrangements. It’s nice, but kind of boring.
Overall: This might be the best tune of yours yet. Nice work. Two songs in a row you’ve set up a basic loop pattern and repeated it throughout a whole song, or close to it. Try to get away from that for interest’s sake. Keep it up. Your vocals are really quiet and unconvincing, even though I hear what you’re trying to do. Keep pushing yourself there, and it’s going to happen for you.

Todd McHatton
Digs:
Ooh this is pretty kickass. I like those big vocals off the top. Nice guitar work. Very prog overall, which I like.
Don’ts: Clipping guitar...shame. The beat is very much second seat in this song, but it shouldn’t be! The vocals sound great, but maybe too much so...too much silk on the top, not enough grit and edge eq-wise.
Overall: This is a vocal symphony! I love that. It’s rare to hear so much vocal work happening on SF! Very impressive and fun to listen to. I like the proggy nature of this song, the jam-out, guitar work. The ending is a bit underwhelming. BUT...this definitely goes on the ipod, and it’s definitely among the possible votes.

Sven Mullet
Digs:
Kind of Alice In Chains-ish...that’s a good thing. And done rather well. Another vocal-friendly tune. Sweet!
Don’ts: It’s maybe a bit too AIC-ish in the end. Dunno... A little bit loose in the middle. For some reason I’m put off at the line “Is it any wonder...” I guess that’s a line that has a place in another song for me. Strange that it bugs me.
Overall: Really great tune, well written and recorded. Performances are all good. Mix was good. Vocals were great. The only thing it needs imo is more leftofcentre stuff, more originality. It’s too close to something else stylistically. But I enjoyed it. On the ipod, in the vote pool.

thehipcola
Digs:
I like the frenetic vibe I pushed hard to get. This might be my best marriage of lyrics and music.
Don’ts: Some transitions between sections didn’t come off as tight or smooth as I’d have liked. Not all of the vocals worked as well as I wanted...I had a bitch of a cold that week.
Overall: While easily not my most accessible work, it’s quickly become my favourite just because of the way it came together and the edges I tried stay outside of without going too far. Tried a lot of different mix techniques on this on some new monitors, so there is a sonic experiment happening as well. I find it tiring to listen to, so I’m going to have to work on the fatigue thing in rocking mixes like this. But overall....I dig it.
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Re: Better use lube (In the Tank reviews)

Post by Reist » Fri Oct 17, 2008 8:40 am

I found out I have a midterm today. Two days ago. :shock: So basically I read Madame Bovary yesterday, and I get to read Faust today. And memorize a lot of authors of depressing poems.

That's my disclaimer for why I haven't written reviews yet.
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Re: Better use lube (In the Tank reviews)

Post by max the cat » Fri Oct 17, 2008 7:39 pm

Sven Mullet: Like the half step drop in the melody guitar work good sometimes seems something occasionally falls out of the pocket. Good over all.

Tonetripper: Okay!! if you insist I’ll give it to you! Hospital grade vocal in the chorus, distortion on the vocal track hides a multitude of sins but good thrashing stuff.

Melvin: It’s refreshing to hear whitey hip hop not trying to be black. Love the hook and the violin apple loop makes for nerd rap magic. The early rhymes are a little wonky(Obvious) but I like this.

The Weakest Suit: The story needs to develop more. Once with the gas guzzling then on to something else. More invention please.

Andrew Reist: The vocal feels too polite for the track. The song is good but it needs more edge more anger to be great.

SomeGuyCalledNoel: A fresh voice not the same old same old. I like this. I wish I had more time to digest it.

Steve Durand I can’t say much for the delivery or production but being in the tank with you as opposed to just being in the tank almost saves it for me.

The Chadderandom Abyss: different not my kind of different

Boltoph: sound like someone studied music but doesn’t really know how to play it.

thehipcola: Yeah, nice great vocal great guitar great track all good.

Tollbooth Jamboree: Fun with the digital toys looped de loops. Couldn’t find the tank though.

Todd McHatton: Nice! Retro-ish but very fresh to the ears. Bass solo staggers a little but interesting over all.

Professor Obscure, MC; Different I like different but I can’t feel any emotional connection here. Vocal needs to be more present. Rhymes need to be fresher they don’t do the quirk justice.

The Cornhuskers: I’m having difficulty figuring out the logic of the lyric. What’s the tank that you’re spending time in? needle skipping’s nice though I hope the song wasn’t created just for that.

PiGPEN; I guess.

Ross Durand:
Nice song, nice vocal, nice lyric. Glad she didn’t go in the tank Nice to see we’re all suffering together. Good Song.

tnk08: I agree

Max The Cat: tank/bank rhyme guilty. Too many songs I’m getting burned out.

Leaf 62: nice guitar.

R. Mosquito: Nice shredding,

Chumlords: More Nice shredding.

Plankton:
Brief

The North American Self-Assurance: like it, I think

WeerSkrood: The future of song writing may slipping out of my esthetic reach.

Ford's Theater Disaster: Another good rocker.

MC Eric B: Little too monochromatic for my taste. I like the gnomish voice.

Jan Krueger: “Tank of happiness” yes! Love it! Plexiglass with Happiness non rhyming rhyme is sheer brilliance. Love the last chord .Brilliantly stupid in a good way. Free choice may be over-rated but the other options aren’t options for me.

Jeff Robertson and the Neo-Candylanders: A point of view I can get behind. Fun song.

The Hand Formula: Nice use of quotidian instruments, especially the percussion.

Erotic Pizza Party: Fun stuff. I don’t find tanks that sexy but I guess it depends on who’s in there. I Like the girls.

the testtests: I don’t get this lyric. I want to, but I don’t. “Camouflage your personal possessions?” If it’s meant to be abstract it’s not abstract enough.
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Re: Better use lube (In the Tank reviews)

Post by tonetripper » Fri Oct 17, 2008 10:34 pm

the testtests - Somehow the I-IV-V chord progression doesn't really mesh with the lyrical content or delivery for this song. "In the tank for you" sounds forced. The harmonies are alright but certainly could be tighter considering they're the same voice.
Tank: Yes, but more in a Mr Big kind of way. My genre bias doesn't allow me to like this at all, let alone vote for it.

thehipcola - Oh ya!!!! I love the lead guitar at the head of the tune. I sure wish I had been able to plop some bass on it. Considering my genre bias I enjoy this tune immensely. Something about the part with the background voices reminds me of some new metal band and I have to say not in a good way, mostly due to my genre bias (well actually I've never been a fan of System of a Down). :) Mix is awesome as is all the performances. The space before the end is my favourite. Way to extend it.
Tank: Yes, but that says more about my genre bias than anything else. Vote contender.

Plankton - Buzzing. Short. Next.
Tank: Like its band name, absolutely; but that's it, cuz the song ain't much. Once again I have a genre bias against this sort of thing.

Ford's Theater Disaster - Genre bias alert. That bass part is great! This has me feeling that I might be in the tank, but more like the bottom of the barrel. Good job on that.
Tank: Totally. Like some 1979 disaster spin-off of good punk acts. No vote.

Professor Obscure MC - That bass tone really eats at your head. The counterpoint with the popcorn sound is really cool, but after that the lyrics don't really save it as I became bored with the same loop going round and round with nowhere else to go.
Tank: More like in a popcorn maker. If it was called in the popcorn maker I may have voted for it. Maybe it's just not my sort of thing.

Tollbooth Jamboree - Whoa..... I heard the cut on that opening guitar. When the bum comes in singing the eastern style voice I'm laughing my head off. That's some fuckin funny shit. There's a compression to this tune that's a little heavy. I hear it coming in and out. That one effect that builds reminds me of street sounds while in the dumpster.
Tank: If you like dumpster music from the viewpoint of a homeless heroin addict then this will be the sure winner. Call it genre bias, I don't like dumpster music.

The Hand Formula - I bought my boy one of those keyboard xylophones and it kills me cuz I hear you tapping those keys. Sounds like Geoff from CCS. Is that sound that's buzzing, one of those blown keyboards? I love the tones of this. Not only do I love the minimalist energy of it, but I love the story. From my perspective it seems like some kid trapped in war. Very cool.
Tank: One hundred percent! This may be my favourite of the fight mostly for it's unbelievable creativity. Great job making me feel like I was listening to that kid. Out of the mouth of Babes!

Boltoph - From the opening I'm impressed by the work that is done on this tune. "How dark could never get out" is awesome in it's movement. Got to say though that there is something eerily familiar to it's meanderings in the verses that reminds me of a beatle song off of Abbey Road- ah that's it "Because". When the guitars and the drums come in I'm extremely pleased. One mix complaint is that the drums sound a little boxy. The congas aren't quite meshing when the jazzy part comes in either. I think more counterpoint should have been employed in that point with the congas. I would have loved to have helped on this song just for that jazzy part alone. Consider it my genre bias. I love jazz.
Tank: Ya sure, but more because I think it doesn't really fit the title. It should have a different name and I may have voted for it. The recording and performances are great.

Todd McHatton - Wow, there are so many eerie similarities to King's X when your multiple harmonies come in and that's not a bad thing cuz I kind of went through this big King's X phase. I really dig those as I dig the transition back to the verses. Biggest complaint is that the vocals are too loud, kind of similar to listening to MOR FM music. The bass tone and guitar tones are great. Drums just need to come up a lot more. Might be an EQ thing. Sounds like there are a lot of over-laps in frequency.
Tank: Totally. Took me up then down again. Dug this tune big time. Mix could have been fixed but the counter-melodies meshed with the interesting transitions really jive with my way of understanding music. Might be my genre bias acting up again, but definite vote contender.

Max the Cat - From the point of the "The Dow Dow is down" bass line this tune just gets funnier. That clearing of the voice is just waaaay out of place. Sounds like you put this all together last minute. That's not a bad thing per se, just a sense I get more from it's immediacy.
Tank: This is my second favourite tune for the title. Really captures the essence of the tanking American economy. It gives me the picture of these four guys singing on the street corner right in front of the bank that I'm going into. Vote contender.

Melvin - This is definitely a better departure than from the last fight. My feeling is that this is about the Republican party and the US elections. I'm not a huge fan of it's vagueness, while I applaud your need to explore this genre it seems like some sort of weird cash grab for a site that doesn't make any money. Like listening to Raine Maida trying to do rap. It works, kind of, but that's it, just kind of.
Tank: Absolutely. Great recording, just didn't really win me over in the sense of being in the tank.

The Chadderrandomabyss - Sounds like Freudian Slip with Rabid. All the disconnected energy has me wondering why, but then it dawns on me that this IS like being in the tank.
Tank: For sure. It's lack of connectivity tanks it big time.

Andrew Reist - Great guitar tone. My problem is that it lives too much frequency wise in the drum tones. It overlaps the beefiness of the drums. Kind of banal in it's approach. Sort of metal gone wrong imho.
Tank: Absolutely. The lead guitar work won't salvage my feelings of the banal songwriting. The music is great.

Some Guy Called Noel - The guitar accompaniment is great. Reminds me of Nick Drake in it's finger picking. Cut out those points between the verse and the chorus. Sounds like you got too stoned and you didn't decide to take a drink to get rid of the dry mouth.
Tank: The guitar work and songwriting is stellar and the story is great. Vote contender.

R. Mosquito - You love that compression huh. Not as bad as the last fight. The tone you get on your guitar is awesome. Way to bring the Grindcore. The heaviness makes my genre bias tweak like no one's business. I love the energy of this tune. Really gets under my skin like some ginormous mosquito sucking the life right out of me.
Tank: The tones blow me out of the water. I don't understand a single word, but it doesn't matter. I love this for the title. So war!!! Possible vote.

JeffRobertson and Neo-Candy Landers - From the first line I find this hilarious cuz of the POV of the fish. "Wishing it was your own" is some funny stuff. The whole jealously of the fish is very amusing as is the two step country vibe going along with it.
Tank: That fish sounds like it has quite the home if you are in such desperate need to be like the fish. Vote contender. Mostly for the lyrics.

Chumlords - The tank intro was one I was going to use. Very cool Kudos for going in the same direction. That riff is so awesome. Kind of like Monster Magnet meeting Helios Creed. Trippy and Psychadelic in all the right ways.
Tank: I feel like blowing shit up and rolling over some heads. Blow em up real good!!! One of my favourites of the fight. Might be that freaking Genre Bias acting up again.

Sven Mullet - The breakdown is really organic with the voices swaying over the music. The lyrical content really fits the nature of the tune. Cascading, dripping, drowning energy. Reminds me of Alice in Chains in a way but way better.
Tank: I wish I could come up for air especially after that chorus. Very cool tune. Vote contender.

The N.A.S.A - Those underwater type tones at the beginning are great. The descending semitone structure is very appropriate for the nature that's conveyed by the lyrics.
Tank: Oh ya, I just wish I could remember what I was up to after last night that landed me in the tank in the first place. But wouldn't your parents be bailing you out? The lyrical take is one of the freshest of the fight. Definite Vote contender.

MC Eric B - The building of the instrumentation with the same chord progression after a while gets extremely stale. I got bored after a while. The fade was well done and then it drops off completely. Could have made that better.
Tank: Totally, but not in a good way. I feel like an illusionist who drowns but still wants my money back. I don't know what that really means.... ah hell pass it off as genre bias.

Weerskrood - Sounds like a mic in the room with those backing tracks. The left side chatter in my ear goes on a little long. I'm sure you were shooting for annoying and you definitely succeeded.
Tank: The improv kind of dips after a while. Basically if you wrote it down it might have been funnier. As it is its just plain annoying. That one drowned even considering my various genre bias'.

PigPEN - Tuning on the vocals definitely lends to character on this track. That backing drum track is mesmerising. Very reminiscent of Broken Social Scene in a way.
Tank: The way that the music moves behind the vocals really makes me believe that this tune is tanking. I kind of dig it. It's very strange in it's delivery. Catchy yet disjunctive. No vote though.

Jan Krueger - Genre Bias Alert!!! That bass has great movement in the tune. "In the Tank of Happiness" is awkward to me. It may seem catchy to you, but it seems forced imho. The verse tone of the vocals is pretty good as is all the backup vocals. Good sounding track.
Tank: Totally. One of my least favourite songs of the fight. It just sounds a little forced to me. Sounds like you stuck lyrics to a musical idea.

Steve Durand - As is usual Steve Durand's lyrics are so literal to the title. Not a bad thing for some things and actually, from my perspective, it works very well with this title. My biggest beef is the borrowing of the style that could be the Dead as much as any other type of World Festival act. The Steel drums are a nice touch. Real? Great performance and the quality is quite good. The banjo work could use a little help.
Tank: I'm in the tank by the end. Not bad, but there are songs here that are much stronger for the title.

Leaf 62 - Mr Bungle comes to mind when I listen to this and I love that one hook with the answer. The harmonized guitars are leading me to believe that the Metallica record is rubbing off on you in a lot of ways. "If you're looking for something to see" part seems like it needed to liven up a bit more in the guitar end. Almost like you needed to crank the volume there to give yourself a little more feedback. I don't know why but I have this unbelievable feeling that some of the music reminds me of Mike Oldfield. The performance is the best of the fight.
Tank: Abso-freakin-lutely!!! That hook has been rolling round in my head for days. The weirdness that goes down cites influences that I think you and I both have ranging from XTC (pre-Skylarking) to 80s prog rock. Freaks me out. The reminiscent feeling I am left with leaves me empty pining for vinyl to be played. Great job on that! Strong Vote contender. Damn Genre bias might have me voting for this :)

Weakest Suit - For a G N G tune this is pretty good. "Commuters crawling" is a great line. Jonathon Richman comes to mind when I listen to this.
Tank: That chorus is great and works with the rest of the lyrics. Not one of my favourites for the title, but up there. Good job.

Erotic Pizza Party - Weird to hear sex working hand in hand with in the Tank. Hahahaa...... that's some funny stuff.
Tank: "Slam dunk in my Guacamole" is the funniest line in the fight. J-Rock could be singing this. The parody of it all kills me.

tnk08 - Yawn. When does it end. Laying in a sample off the television does a song this not make.
Tank: Well I wonder if it's a vestibule.

The Corn Huskers - The crackly record effect needs to be added to the instruments to make me buy the record concept and not the just the mix. The guitar is great. Harmonica would have put it over the top.
Tank: The skipping record at the end makes me want to vote for this alone. Shouldn't have faded it though, maybe just kept it going for a really long time with the needle scraping over the vinyl to end it. Funny stuff, lyrics are fantastic and all round well performed. Contender.

Ross Durand - Kind of like The Corn Huskers, but better recorded. Not sure once again of the lyrical content being so literal to the title, but that once again may be my stupid genre bias shining through again. The guitar performance is outstanding, but it's all been done a thousand times before.
Tank: Ya it does alright. I'd probably cheer like crazy at an open stage for this tune. Great job on capturing that. The flat picking is some fine work.
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Re: Better use lube (In the Tank reviews)

Post by Steve Durand » Fri Oct 17, 2008 11:09 pm

tonetripper wrote: Steve Durand - As is usual Steve Durand's lyrics are so literal to the title. Not a bad thing for some things and actually, from my perspective, it works very well with this title. My biggest beef is the borrowing of the style that could be the Dead as much as any other type of World Festival act. The Steel drums are a nice touch. Real? Great performance and the quality is quite good. The banjo work could use a little help.
Tank: I'm in the tank by the end. Not bad, but there are songs here that are much stronger for the title.
Not sure where you're hearing steel drum in there. The only instruments are Bass, Guitar, Banjo, and drums.

Thanks for the review.
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Re: Better use lube (In the Tank reviews)

Post by tonetripper » Fri Oct 17, 2008 11:16 pm

It must be the banjo Im hearing. Had an interesting boxy tone that might have given me reason to think Im hearing pan.
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Re: Better use lube (In the Tank reviews)

Post by Reist » Sat Oct 18, 2008 11:02 am

tonetripper wrote:The lead guitar work won't salvage my feelings of the banal songwriting.
Do you mean the lyrics are bad, or the arrangement ... or something else? I haven't really figured out the definition of songwriting yet.
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Re: Better use lube (In the Tank reviews)

Post by Learned Hand » Sun Oct 19, 2008 1:10 pm

Again, thanks for comments! I'm glad some people actually seem to like this one. It was a bit of a departure for me, at least melody-wise. The buzzing sound is a Stylophone. The tinkly sound is a toy piano again. And the chirpy electronics are a Thingamagoop. Hoping to include more electronic toys, as well as acoustic ones. The lyrics are admittedly a little opaque, even for me. I intended to refer to Shawn Nelson, the guy from San Diego who stole the tank & drove it down the highway. But feel free to read in whatever you like!
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Re: Better use lube (In the Tank reviews)

Post by thehipcola » Mon Oct 20, 2008 1:31 pm

Ditto, thanks to the FEW reviewers who've done so.


C'mon people! Review this awesome fight!
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Re: Better use lube (In the Tank reviews)

Post by Leaf » Mon Oct 20, 2008 2:31 pm

Oh, I will tiger. I'm just full on work busy right now... but I shall tonight or tomorrow. Don't you fret. Unless it's on a GHE-tar.
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Re: Better use lube (In the Tank reviews)

Post by tonetripper » Mon Oct 20, 2008 4:13 pm

Reïst wrote:
tonetripper wrote:The lead guitar work won't salvage my feelings of the banal songwriting.
Do you mean the lyrics are bad, or the arrangement ... or something else? I haven't really figured out the definition of songwriting yet.
Well it might be more of a combination of things that give me the feeling of the songwriting being weak. It sounds like you had a great guitar idea and decided to put the lyrics to it. The funny thing about Songfight is it's all pretty subjective to each individual. There are some who really morph the musical concept well with the lyrical and sung expression really well and others who are excellent musicians who want desperately to write a great song but really come up short on the SONGwriting part of it but their music kicks ass. There is no real formula that defines songwriting imho, but more how you choose to get there. This title may be more for you to stretch out in, whilst some other one in the future would be, perhaps, more in the vein of who you are or how you choose to express yourself. My feeling is that SF is an exercise in stretching yourself to various comfort levels. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't. If I may be so bold, you didn't really seem to stretch outside of your comfort zone and therefore it all sounded too easy for my ears. Like I've heard that style working, in the way that you went about it, a thousand times before. Ofcourse it's all subjective, so don't take a review too much to heart there may be some, though they don't seem to be reviewing who think you did a bang up job. Keep doing what you do and eventually I'm sure there will be that magic SF tune that really rings true for you and your style of songwriting.

Maybe what I'm saying is that you might have a sound, but it's how the title, imo, fits with the music and how the lyrics express that musical idea, through the melody, that will ultimately define whether the song fits the title. Of course there is such a divergence of talents here that everyone here is going to have a different take on what defines a song, in terms of the title, but sometimes most everyone agrees that some songs were just made for a specific title.
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Re: Better use lube (In the Tank reviews)

Post by thehipcola » Tue Oct 21, 2008 5:42 pm

4 or 5 sets of reviews for 31 entries.


That's gonna be a (lame) record of some sort. :roll:
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Re: Better use lube (In the Tank reviews)

Post by Märk » Tue Oct 21, 2008 5:48 pm

I will review this fight. I've been incredibly busy the last week, but I'll do it either tonight (unlikely) or tomorrow evening (very likely)

I agree, the amount of reviews for this excellent fight is abysmal, and I'm not helping matters by not reviewing it, right?
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Re: Better use lube (In the Tank reviews)

Post by Ross » Tue Oct 21, 2008 6:27 pm

Have listened pretty thoroughly - need to finish "shoelace soup" first, but reviews will appear.
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Re: Better use lube (In the Tank reviews)

Post by Reist » Tue Oct 21, 2008 8:58 pm

thehipcola wrote:4 or 5 sets of reviews for 31 entries.


That's gonna be a (lame) record of some sort. :roll:
This week's my paper/midterm week. I might throw them on my ipod and review them on my drive to school though.
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Re: Better use lube (In the Tank reviews)

Post by Leaf » Tue Oct 21, 2008 9:34 pm

The Test Tests: I like the harmonies, and the camp fire feel. Is your guitar in tune? Is this the same guy singing the harmonies or two people? It sounds like two people, which is cool. It’s nice, and its’ teh kind of thing I appreciate, but I don’t seek out this kind of music or sit around listening to it. This could have a good drum groove, some real deep bass and I’d like it way more. I don’t feel like the title was correct for this tune... didn’t feel like in the tank to me. I didn’t mind it though, it’s alright.

PigPen: I was digging the music and the intro, but I’m not digging the vocals. Too dry, too prominent are the first things I notice, but mostly it’s the fact they are not in tune. The drums I don’t like tonally, but I like the parts you got, they work well. Yeah, the sound is pretty good, the vocals need work. The song itself is alright, reminds me of a lot of stuff, overall I like the song, but there are elements of the performance and tonal selection I’m not grooving on.

The Chadderandom Abyss: Nope. Singing isn’t very good, sounds like you just got a synth. Cool sounds are fun to play with, and I’m glad you’re entertaining yourself cause that’s important, but this song sucks.

Mc Eric B; Ya know... I’m starting to hear a theme in your music. Singing is not happening unfortunately. I feel like you could really benefit from a stronger bass line. Instead of the countrified ba-booms on the root and occasional fifth you could try more of an eighth note rhythm to blend with the drum groove more, and also to tie the whole thing together better. I find the verse pattern gets dull too, but probably cause this tune is just okay, overall. Mix is alright, sounds are alright, although they sound very “canned”.

Weerskrood: So far, so not. The “fake” start with the drums is ... not a great idea here. Hmmm. So far, this is not very good.... nope, not doing it for me in anyway. Nope. Still not very good. Sorry.

Andrew Reist: Finally something with some balls. Jesszuz I was falling apart there. More bass. Sounds growly. More air, more confidence on your vocals, you have good tone. Are you a drummer first? I ask this cause I think you should try holding your notes a bit longer, and not so in time all the time. The first time I hit on this idea (cause it’s a problem for me) is playing singstar. I realized covers I’ve been doing for a while where just too staccato, and I attribute that to my drummer brain. Nice solo, fits well, rocks. Some vocals are slightly flat. Again, more air and confidence and I bet most of that goes away. I like this one. So far, first vote of the fight from moi.

The Hip Cola: Hmmm. Man, what the fuck is this shit? Seriously, you have strayed. I appreciated your work more when you singing “working for the weekend” and actually made a difference.. oh..whoops, I thought this was Boltoph. Sorry dude. I’m going to give you a dose of hip cola:
Do’s: vocals. Dude. Remember being 14 and singing U2??? Now listen to you, your vocals are fucking great, and I happen to love your voice, mostly cause of the swimming pool incident.
Don’ts: The drums. Sounds like Ministry. Ministry is cool, I remember listening to Minstry with you 10 years ago or so in Kitchener in my mom’s station wagon when I came home for holidays. Remember that man?? DO YOU REMEMBER???
Fucking tight bitch. I love it. Especially the fake ending. That fucking worked like an optician on Extasy in downtown Toronto. Fuck that was good, second vote.
Seriously, good. Not cause we’re buddies, but because we’re buddies who rock, and you just rocked.

SomeGuyCalled Noel: SO MUCH BETTER than last weeks’. This is good, right of the bat, I’m digging it. I like your riff, it’s cool. Some of this reminds me of the foo fighters. Nice sound, nice vocals. Yeah, this is great. A vote from me. Very musical in it’s structure and shape, and this is the kinda tune you hear in a coffee shop and think “finally something good, jeeezzzuuuss”. Wow. Maybe I’m on glue, I’m certainly having a few brew, but this seems like a better effort from you. Like you knew, that the true blue shoe needed to be through the view of your skew. Whatever. I was on a role. I like this, well done, good song, and good feel. Vote ya.

The hand Formula: so far bleh. You are reminding me of Christmas. THANKS. Eh. Sounds experiemental, and that’s great, but it’s not original. I like the fact you’re trying to cover territory like weird percussion, etc to try and give your song some more dynamic and element, but the song isn’t doing for me at all, so ... sorry, next.

Erotic Pizza Party: The groove is aight. The bass is funky. Nice feel, sits well... the rapping is average at best, although it’s good... but good isn’t good enough when I’m listening to rap cause... well, I’m not a huge fan of hip hop. There is more crap hiphop than crap rock. I can’t rap... I try, cause it’s fun, but real good rappers have “something” or they are just crap. This has good sound, and the female vocal is hot, the male vocal is alright. The track has my head bobbing, but I’m not sold on the message. Sexy sounds and ideas don’t automatically mean it’s gonna go though. You know, overall, this is pretty good in production but as a song, and if I heard this on the radio, I wouldn’t care if I heard it again. It has no hook, all groove and feel and production and no hook to tell me what this song is about. Repeating the chorus isn’t enough of a hook. It’s ok overall.

Plankton: Kriss Kross? Seriously? Jeez. Nope, not gonna do it.

Ross Durand: Stompin Durand. This sounds pretty good. Makes me feel like going to the pub for some drinking beers, belt holding, foot stompin times. Except you just said craigs list. Killed the vibe. This is pretty good, although the dylanique (I tried... but that isn’t a word) moments remind me Dylan is better. And I don’t like Dylan really. Dull. So, as a song, pretty darn good. Not my thing though, but for those that this is there thing, it’s a good thing I’m sure.

ProfessorObscureMc: Nope. The drums and riff don’t even work together. The rapping is dull. Sorry, not good enough.

Sven Mullet: I am looking forward to this one... what is gonna happen... I like the riff. I feel like something isn’t sitting well... I love the ideas. I can hear the Alice In Chains too. Yeah, I’m digging the ideas and the tones, but something is fighting itself on the verses. Maybe the guitars are too on top of the beat. On the solo everything seems to sit just fine... then it seemed to happen again. Voice sounds good. I feel like the drums, or the way the rhythm guitars sat with the drums killed a good song.

Jeff Robertson: sounds alright. Reminds me of “jesus Christ superstar” for some strange reason... weird. I like your strange vocal approach personally, sounds fun. Drums feel too stale, they could rock it up more, not the groove, its’ cool, but the drums never change, or indicate any personality. Solo is very nice... I like this one. At first I thought I wasn’t going too... heh. Cute song, liked it.

Jan Krueger: Yeah, this is alright. Nice groove. Took a moment for it to settle in my mind, nice voice, although you clearly strain on higher notes. Sounds like you can hit them, so ... I dunno. You can never go wrong with more air and confidence. My stock advice tonight. I like your tone. Back ups are good, but then they just seem to present. Maybe... have them come in and out of the tune a bit, for some... oh wait, their gone on the lead. Lead was ... okay. Good song, I liked it.

Leaf: The clip at the beginning is some dude on youtube talking about what his commander told him when they were bombing Cologne. I like this tune, but not the mix. Tons of fun making this. Pound those pussies to hell is a fucking great line, and no one will ever take that from me. Damn it. Hmmm.. I haven’t listened to it for a week. Seems to lack some volume. Damn, why is it I mix something and love it, but then later it just doesn’t compare? Must be something about being an amateur recordist or some such excuse. Hey. That was a rhetorical question directed at myself, and Des actually. Silent, lovely, Des... such a gem of a talent. And, he has lots of foam in his basement, which has many uses.

Ford’s Theater Disaster: I like the feel... I’m liking it. I just like all the loud, aggressive shit going on. Overall, not much of a song to grab onto, but liking the vibe and personality of the track.

Steve Durand: Not very tight. The song is cheesy... interesting you and your brother are both doing country kinda things. This one isn’t doing it for me, sorry.

Chumlords: It is chum season you know. So far, we’ve done alright with it. I liked the tank sounds. Cool. Oh yeah, this rocks good. Nice , I like. I like it alot actually, this is fucking cool. Right on. Vote.


The North American thingy: nice. Nice guitar work. Some of the vocals having tuning issues at times. Good mix. Good feel, I like it.

Toll booth jamboree: So far, not grabbing me. Vocals came in. Still not doing for me... and .. skipping it. Terrible.
Melvin: Production is good, but the song isn’t doing anything for me, sorry.

Boltoph: I already told you what I thought. Sounds like a Metallica intro..then it isn’t. You have awesome soft vocal sound and technique. Tell me again why you recorded this whole track in the nude on your sundeck? Odd, but it works. Nice music man, sits real nice. I’m not liking the percussion on the verse, seems distracting. The vocal line at the end is groovy.

Tonetripper: Love the guitar riff. Reminds me of Danko. I love your voice. Drums are good. Bringing the rip your head off and stuff a herring down the gape thing eh. I like the way it breaks down. Distorted bass eh.. works. I like it. I feel biased, cause I like all my “friends” songs, but then I realize... I met you through songfight, and we got on cause you’re good at what you do and it gels for me. I think if you had some kind of melodic element to introduce on a verse it’d expand it a touch. I gotta be honest, I love the song but I’m not hearing in the tank. Not that it matters at this point in time... heh.

Mosquito: Fuck, nice man. I like the riff. Rocking. Green Jello big time. I’m liking it. Rocks. I enjoyed this so much more than last week. Nice riffs... I like good rocking riffs. Solo is not loud enough.

Tnk08: nope. Nothing there for me to grab onto. Sorry, not even a song.

MaxThe Cat: I usually always like your stuff. I don’t mind this, it’s alright, but so far, not much is going on enough to grab me. The song itself has cute lyrics but they are not something I relate to. Economics. Bleh. I just don’t want to be reminded about this right now... nice voice though.

Todd McChatton: Nice vocals. Real, good. I’m liking this so far. Cool sounds and ideas. I like it. I’d vote for this... you have a messiness going on there, but it’s working cause the vocals are so tight.

The Cornhuskers: sounds good, seems good, but I’m running out of steam on the listening track here. Seems pretty good, but I don’t sit around enjoying this kind of music, so I’ll say it’s good, cause it is... except that one part on your “yodelaell” thingy... seems to slip a bit there. Alright.

Weakest Suit: Again, another good guitar guy song. Actually, I’m liking this one more than the others though. Seems to have some good vibe and energy. Sounds fun. Alright.
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Re: Better use lube (In the Tank reviews)

Post by Ross » Tue Oct 21, 2008 10:01 pm

Leaf wrote: Ross Durand: [nice stuff] ... the dylanesque moments remind me Dylan is better. And I don’t like Dylan really. Dull. So, as a song, pretty darn good. Not my thing though, but for those that this is there thing, it’s a good thing I’m sure.
I guess I'm just gonna have to get better than that Dylan guy.

Another review absorbed into the signature line.

Thanks for the review - mine to come [knock wood]
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Re: Better use lube (In the Tank reviews)

Post by Märk » Tue Oct 21, 2008 10:08 pm

Leaf wrote:I feel like the drums, or the way the rhythm guitars sat with the drums killed a good song.
Märk wrote:I'm going to be in. My song is done, but I may redo some things. It would be ~9.36% more awesome if someone did drums for me. (see that PM button?) Lots of time to perfect this still.
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Re: Better use lube (In the Tank reviews)

Post by reve » Tue Oct 21, 2008 10:49 pm

The second part of my (now rushed) reviews, in which I use the word "rad" in every review at least once.

tNASA - Pretty rad intro, albiet disconnected from the rest of the song, which is also pretty rad. The lyrics are kinda banal, but the rest of the song is rad with your dope guitar harmonies & stuff.

PiGPEN - This seems like a departure for you. But it's rad.

Plankton - Vote. Seriously. Had this gone on for too much longer it woulda sucked, but this is rad.

Professor Obsecure MC - Okay, I do love the chippy blips, the game refs. are rad, but the lackadastical delivery mitigates the song's impact.

R. Mosquito - I faked death metal based vaguely on Finding Nemo... only with more death. Un rad.

R. Durand - This is depressing. It's good, you know you have skills, and it touched my heart. Heart-touching is rad.

Noel - Yeah this was rad, and so excellently textured both in terms of how the guitar tracks built and doubled, as well as how the vocals played off of each other.

S. Durand - The raddest part of this song is the banjo. It's edgy.

S. Mullet - I wish I could play metal this rad. A couple timing issues that you're undoubtedly aware of would be my only picky-points.

Testtests - I think jazzin' your tune up with some percusssion or whatever would be rad -- it'd grab the listner a bit more.

tnk08 - Conceptually, this is rad. But it comes across as kind of unfocused.

T. McHatton. - I am jealous of your rad, on key singing. You might wanna think about dumping the delay on the vox, and either rolling off some high end or using a de-esser. It's distracting and doesn't contribute positively to the song.

Tollbooth Jamboree - Undecernable relevance to the given title equals a one on the scale of one to rad.

Tonetripper - I would double the guitar & pan left and right. Seriously. Drop a third guitar in with no cab at the chorus. Along with Cymbals to keep the high end goin'. That would make this even radder.

Weakest Suit - The (shake!)s are rad.

WeerSrkood - This is another rad concept that suffered a bit in excecution. The song bit is reeeal hard to make out, at least in headphones.
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Re: Better use lube (In the Tank reviews)

Post by Ross » Wed Oct 22, 2008 1:54 am

I promised "reviews" - here they are

brief, two sentence reviews - it is late. Will sound more burtal than I mean - PM if you want.

Andrew - I am not totally getting the tank part;not all that engaged. I wish I could produce a recording that sounded this good.

Boltoph - a bit wandery. a syou have noted, not your usual production standard.

Chadderandom - I don’t generally get through this. Too much in the way.

Chumlords - I like the industrial thing (fan). tThe actual song thing is not so strong for me.

Cornhuskers - you try to over country the vocals which takes away from thesng -it would be better if you sounded like you meant it. 2nd verse should have been last and vice versa - otherwise real close to vote.

Erotic - Genre Bias. and I don’t like it either.

Ford’s theater - you sound familiar (jeff?) can’ t realy get het song through the din.

hand formula - does the squiggly sound mean something its on all of your songs? closer to a song this week.

hipcola -fatttt sound. I really like the alt metal patter vocals. is that smalltown? nice piece - vote for some reason.

Jan - nice and poppy in a good mid-90s duncan sheik way. Another vote. even thought e chorus is cheesy - it’s hooky

Jeff et. - ehhh - didn’t do it for me - although I like you breaking the blues you usually do.

Leaf - best of the military Tank songs - it’s good but not really my style :-) kidding - vote

Max - I like a lot of this there’s something pushing me away, perhaps it’s the vote from someone who tole me My song was too topical but voted for this - that’s just BS parts of the repetition push me away. Happy to see you back - undecided.

Mc ERic B - is this supposed to be romantic - it’s creepy. You use the same tune for every song - and that’s coming from a folk singer.

Melvin - have spent way too much time on this - is this about a particular person? I don’t get it - seriously Say it or don’t. Why give it up for this person you hate? yes yes ya’ll for a hipocrit?

NASA - good more focussed than with more members - I like. Vote.

PiPen - can’t get past the “singing.” this is the second sentence.

Prof Ob. I like the concept and the way the sounds relate to the song concept. Is this about particular game? Why are you killing chinese food?

R Mosquito - can’t make out words. Heavy.

Noel - this got stuck in my head and it was unpleasant. I don’t like hearing all your breaths.

Steve - some clever stuff - but sounds like the Disney parade version of bluegrass to me.

Sven - just not interested -but production is nice.

test tests -nice in so many ways - not engaging in others - too vague?

tnk08 - sorry. or me this is in the “not a song” file

Todd Hatton - DAMN YOU TODD HATTON. sounds awesome - not clear on the title take - undecided

tonetripper - it happens - not grabbing me. and not genre - just sameness. Do you like the Cure

WEkest suit - better at the end than it seemed while it was happening - undecided. I’d like to hear you focus.

mr. Screwed - I like the idea (see Camper Van Beethoven’s history of Utah for instance) but not the song.
"I don't like this song, but at least it's good." - veGetar Ianra Ge
http://www.rossdurandmusic.com
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