Is it all in my head? (My Favorite Monster Reviews)

Discuss upcoming, current, and previous song fights.
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Pigfarmer Jr
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Is it all in my head? (My Favorite Monster Reviews)

Post by Pigfarmer Jr » Mon Feb 04, 2019 3:14 pm

Let's hear 'em....
I released my first album on January 26th, 2018.
Free download (for a limited time) or purchase a CD:
http://tcelliott.bandcamp.com/

Ad astra per alia porci - Steinbeck
(To the stars on the wings of a pig.)
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Re: Is it all in my head? (My Favorite Monster Reviews)

Post by Lunkhead » Mon Feb 04, 2019 8:20 pm

Thanks for making the review thread!

Here's the lyrics thread: https://www.songfight.net/forums/viewto ... =5&t=11392
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Re: Is it all in my head? (My Favorite Monster Reviews)

Post by Lunkhead » Wed Feb 06, 2019 11:20 pm

Songs posted!
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Re: Is it all in my head? (My Favorite Monster Reviews)

Post by glennny » Thu Feb 07, 2019 2:12 am

It's titles like this that make me really miss Billys Little Trip.
Phillipso, Older Brothers, Semolina Pilchards, Zipline , Thank Glennny for the Frisbee, The Odoriferous Valley, The Worldly Self Assurance, Berkeley Social Scene, Very Gentle Knives, Daddy Bop Swing Set, GUNS, The Kraken Lives, Cavedwellers
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Re: Is it all in my head? (My Favorite Monster Reviews)

Post by thirdcat » Thu Feb 07, 2019 7:00 am

possible bug? I just looked at the new songs for this title (haven't listened yet) and it's saying my vote has been recorded at the bottom.
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Re: Is it all in my head? (My Favorite Monster Reviews)

Post by Lunkhead » Thu Feb 07, 2019 8:26 am

Ah, whoops, I forgot the very last step of the many steps involved in updating the site. Will fix shortly.

EDIT: Fixed
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Re: Is it all in my head? (My Favorite Monster Reviews)

Post by Heine » Sun Feb 10, 2019 9:24 am

Quite quiet here up to now. Okay, I'm the first to review.
It was a very pleasant fight; a lot of nice Rock'n'Rollers in there, this time.

BSS – Except for the slide guitar it could be a nice Ramones tune. Backing vocals are cool and in the right place!

Cybronica – A bit medieval-style with plug-ins? A nice hybrid piece of music. I like the female backings. What are the backwards voices trying to tell me?

Glenny – A more synth-like beginning. The first part of the vocals is a bit strange but the rest of the track is fine. A nice and catchy chorus. Well, a slide guitar, again. Great! I particular enjoyed the doubled guitars in the coda. Pretty cool! Possible vote.

Lichen Throat – It's a nice story. I like how the strings are used. I like the verses more than the chorus. The words seem a bit loose here and could use a bit more melody to stay in my memory.

Miscellaneous Owl – I like this one very much! Maybe it's because I saw your explanation of the song, so I guess the first part of it has some similarities with Tubeway Army/Gary Numan. Very fine harmony vocals. For me the guitar is a little bit too loud. This tune is much lighter than I assumed after reading your thoughts on the lyrics. – Vote!

Paco del Stinko – 6/8. Cool! I want this on Vertigo/Swirl-Label! I like the vocal performance this time very much. Guitar work good as ever. And the double guitar "Wishbone Ash" parts are even better. Great. – Vote!

Pigfarmer Junior – A nice rocker. The singing is a bit too much on the chord. Overall I like it!

Pepper Jane & Caravan Ray – This one got me first. Although my very first thoughts were: too simple, too many repetitions. But the vocal delivery is haunting! (If you ever want to collaborate, I'll be there…) – A clear vote!

Reve + ujn – Short. I'm afraid, it is too short to be memorable. Though I really like this piece of music.

Third Cat – What I really, really like about this song is the tone of the solo guitar. It sounds so great to me. Overall a nice tune. Vote!

ujn + Reve – Even short. And a bit doomier. It sounds like it was fun to play.

Vom Vorton – (Your name suggested me that you might be German, too. But the podcast told that you are British.) A nice and silly song. (In the best way!) Like very good fast food. Oh, my big appetite, again! A bunch of melodies, great backing vocals. You know what you're doing and you're doing it well. – Vote!

heine – Apart from some timing problems (my trademark!) I really like this one. Even my 9 year old son likes it quite much. I recorded two songs and merged them into each other. (All on one day!) The "frame part" was a lot of fun to do, especially the vocals. But I should have taken more time to find a better distortion for the guitars. The "dream sequence" has more melody and variety but is sung a bit too suffering. A lot of first takes in here. – What is more brutal in the end? The monster dream or harsh reality? I guess reality, because by daybreak the dream is over …
www.heine-musik.de - Paragon of Teutonic Gloominess
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Re: Is it all in my head? (My Favorite Monster Reviews)

Post by vowlvom » Sun Feb 10, 2019 11:58 am

Oh yeah! Quick reviews, I listened a bunch of times last week but I’m also trying to do FAWM at the moment (for the 12th year!) and I’m stretching all my time Extremely Thin.

BSS - love the gang vocals and the punky energy, keyboard (or is it melodica?) melody also very cool. Kinda hate the lyrics though! I’m sure I’m missing some context but without knowing more about the song, this creeps me out too much to enjoy. A child who sends you dirty pictures? I’m lost.

Cybronica - some killer atmospherics here! I love the clanking bass harmonics and the big synth pad. The backwards stuff is effective too! The song as a whole isn’t totally my kind of thing but it’s done really well.

glennny - I have a few minor issues with this one: the cool acoustic riff at the start disappears just as I'm getting into it, and the mix feels a bit full-on in a loudness-wars sort of way. Those complaints fell away as soon as I realised what this song was about though, the lyrics are inspired - especially that "down in the dumps" line, which is A++++, vote!

Heine - the song-within-a-song idea is an interesting experiment but it doesn't really pay off for me. The wraparound song is pretty enjoyable, a little straight-ahead-rock for my tastes but the theatrical vocals are great. I'm not that into the inner song really, although it has plenty of good stuff in it. The combination of the two just feels a little disjointed to me, less than the sum of its parts. Not bad but I liked last fight’s song a lot more.

Lichen Throat - like this one a lot, the lyric is great and the storytelling really works for me. I like the emotion in your voice on the section that includes the title and you’ve got some good dynamics in this time! One of my favourite LT songs. Vote!

miscellaneous owl - densely packed, catchy and great! There’s some room for improvement in the mix I’m sure but your songwriting is superb as ever. Vote!

Paco Del Stinko - that riff in the chorus is really solid and chunky and I absolutely love the harmonised guitar breaks. Overall this is another PDS song that slots into the “good but not one of your best” group though and I don’t think I can quite include it in my favourites.

Pepper Jane / Caravan Ray - love the vocals, can't quite make my mind up about the ultra-stripped-down style. I think its the combination of the bare bones instrumentation and the repetitive lyric that doesn't quite click with me. I wish there was just a little bit more going on, but that said I’m still possibly voting for this one because Pepper Jane’s voice just sounds so great.

Pigfarmer Jr - enjoyable, solid rock song. Didn’t really stick with me like some of the others but another strong entry!

reve & ujn - I'm not really familiar with Screeching Weasel, but this definitely hits that Ramones-y sweet spot that I find hard to resist - even in a ridiculously short song! And it’s another Muppet-related song, I can’t resist that. Vote!

Third Cat - really like the surfy lead guitar. Nice laid-back vibe, although this one lacks the catchiness that my favourite TC songs tend to have.

ujn & reve - I love the lyrical idea but I wish you’d expanded it a bit more! Unlike the R&U track this one didn’t justify its short length for me. But still fun!

Vom Vorton - I wrote and recorded this during and in the immediate aftermath of a nasty cold that sapped all my energy and made singing unusually hard work. I think it came out pretty well considering, although I think in places I made some slightly questionable choices that I might not have made if everything was working properly.
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Re: Is it all in my head? (My Favorite Monster Reviews)

Post by Lunkhead » Sun Feb 10, 2019 12:50 pm

vowlvom wrote:
Sun Feb 10, 2019 11:58 am
BSS - love the gang vocals and the punky energy, keyboard (or is it melodica?) melody also very cool. Kinda hate the lyrics though! I’m sure I’m missing some context but without knowing more about the song, this creeps me out too much to enjoy. A child who sends you dirty pictures? I’m lost.
Ew, yeah, that's gross. I'm pretty sure "She's still a child" is not meant in a literal sense, though, but figuratively, like she's still childish, emotionally immature, has arrested development, etc.
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Re: Is it all in my head? (My Favorite Monster Reviews)

Post by lichenthroat » Mon Feb 11, 2019 8:56 am

Berkeley Social Scene—I’m not sure what to make of the lyrics, but I like the music on this one. The shoutalong backing vocals were a good idea. One of my favorite BSS tunes.

Cybronica—I admire your ability to combine traditional vocal melodies with contemporary instrumentation. My opinion of this song has increased a little bit every time I listen to it. There’s more going on than is at first apparent.

Glennny—The bass/drum rhythm is a highlight; I also like how the feel of how the sound lifts for the chorus. I think this song will stand up well to repeated listening over time. I don’t like this quite as much as your “A Doom with a View” entry, but this is among your best songs.

heine—I like the middle section quite a bit more than the beginning and end. Big points for originality and daring. Very nice guitar playing.

Lichen Throat (me)—I’m pretty happy with how this came out. I’m not sure why the acoustic guitar in the chorus sounds so weird, though, particularly when the song is played at higher volumes.

miscellaneous owl—Well, I’ve already mentioned how much I like the lyrics. I didn’t care for the intro, which feels somewhat disjointed. The rest of the song, though, is marvelous! This is my favorite song I’ve heard, from any source, in the last few months; I’ve probably listened to it 30 times already. Your voice is beautiful, and the way you’ve done the double tracking, with the voices sometimes in unison and sometimes in harmony, adds a lot of interest. The arrangement, with the falling melodies and the short gaps between the end of a chorus and the next verse, conveys a sense of inevitability. The performance conveys just enough sensuality to suit the lyrics, without being in any way salacious or gratuitous, and there’s the perfect amount of melancholy. Excellent, excellent work!

Paco del Stinko—I couldn’t get in the groove on this one, but I’m not sure why. There’s a clear rhythm, and the performances, as usual, are good. I really like how your voice sounds in the section that starts at 2:02.

Pigfarmer Jr—Something didn’t quite click with me on this one. Maybe the vocal melody. The guitar sounds good, as does the transition from the verse to the chorus. I like the drumming pattern, too.

PJ/CR—It’s great to hear your voice again. On this song, you sound like an Australian Lucinda Williams (which is good, of course). I like the guitar tone. I think maybe this needs one more instrument, but wow, the performances are strong. “Everything I eat comes out of the freezer” is a great line.

Reve and Ujn—This sounds good. Wish it was longer.

Third Cat—I don’t think I really got this until I listened a few times. Very subtle. I like the liberties you’ve taken with conventional song structure; the guitar interlude near the beginning is a great idea. The end seems to cut off too abruptly. Good vocal and guitar performances.

Ujn and Reve—The lyrics are funny. Otherwise, the song is a little too dissonant for my taste. Good performances, though.

Vom Vorton—I’m not sure what this about, but I like it. It seems like you’ve used the mix as a compositional tool, which I find very interesting. I feel a little confused by this song, but I’m also intrigued.
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Re: Is it all in my head? (My Favorite Monster Reviews)

Post by Lunkhead » Mon Feb 11, 2019 10:55 pm

Berkeley Social Scene
Did somebody ask for more gang vocals?! :P This one is Ken on lyrics, drums, lead vocals, and melodica, Martin on bass, Glen on guitar and the slide solo, me on guitar and the non-slide solo, and all of us on backing vocals. I mixed. I like the core tracks of this one. I wish I'd gotten the drums a little louder and i just couldn't get that first melodica note in tune in spite of some time spent on it in post. It was weird. i think we managed to come up with catchy pre-chorus and chorus parts.

Cybronica
I have a bit of genre bias with this one and some mix issues are making this one tough for me to really appreciate. The vocals should be the primary focus but seem buried, and there is a general muddiness. I think the mix could benefit from hi-pass filters on lots of the tracks to keep the low end from being crowded. Or maybe there are just too many low frequency range instruments and the instrumentation could be tweaked a bit to address that. I really like the cool soundscape intro/outro. I think the fuzzy synth pad is probably not needed when the vocals are happening. Good imagery in the lyrics. Verse vocal timing is a bit loose.

Glennny
Cool blend of instruments. The verse vocals have some pretty rough pitch issues at least in the first verse. I wish there were catchier/hookier vocal melodies. Tonally something is sounding weird to me in the mid sections of the verses, like the mode change or whatever it is is sticking out a little awkwardly. For me the slide solo doesn't quite match up with the frenetic energy of the music behind it and I don't think the second solo is really necessary. I like the outro a lot, though I don't love the very end.

heine
I'm really not liking those 1/16th note hi-hats, they sound super clicky. The accent in the vocals isn't working for me in the bookend sections, and the playing feel pretty loose in the fadeout of the intro bookend. Unfortunately the song-within-a-song concept is a little _too_ conceptual for me, I would have preferred one more coherent song. Plus the inner song is really slow and long, particularly the instrumental mid section. For me the inner song kinda drags. Plus the playing gets a little loose here and there. Nice slide guitar playing, though, and well recorded/mixed. I'd really prefer if the song had just ended, the cross fade back to the outer song not my favorite.

Lichen Throat
Your main vocal singing is so low in pitch it's kinda hard to tell what the notes are. Maybe next time try shifting the main melody to be up higher, like in the range where you're currently singing a harmony, and either double it or shift the harmony up too. For some reason the notes in your music and notes in your vocals don't sound tonally very coherent to me, like, I don't get a strong sense of what keys the parts are in. Reading the lyrics I actually wish this could have been done more like a medieval folk song, the lyrics are solid and tell a story well. I really didn't like the rimshot metronome that comes ahead of the drums. The cello sound is a very very welcome departure from the faux guitar and I like the music in that part. I think for me though the vocals need more energy and clearer pitch and melody, particularly in the bridge.

miscellaneous owl
i like the vocals, i wish they sat better in the mix, did you use a hi-pass, compression, reverb, etc? Not sure if all the synths are quantized but something seems a little loose in there somewhere. This is another two-for-one song deal and again it's not landing so well for me. Very good chorus though, catchy melody, hooky. I think O'd like this more if it were just the main part, save the synth intro stuff for another song. I'll vote for this one anyway though.

Paco del Stinko
Another solid Paco tune! There is some slightly awkward phrasing in the verse vocals. I kinda wished for a double-time/faster section. Great solo. The final chorus vocals are awesome, i wish you'd sung all the choruses like that. Final solo = A+

Pigfarmer Jr
Nice guitar work. There are some pitch issues in the vocals that would be great to tune up. And is there any reverb on them? They sound kinda dry and don't sit super great in the mix to my ear. Lyricsally this is all solid and fine, although "better off dead" feels pretty clunky.

PJ/CR
PJ's singing is really great to hear, yay! The vocal track though maybe too loud and/or could use more reverb or something, maybe cut more low end. Definitely cut more low end on CR's vocals. Nice song for being presumably some iPhone recordings or something. I'd love to hear a more fleshed out collab between you two.

Reve and Ujn
Sweet and short punk song about cookie monster. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Third Cat
I'm really liking this one overall. It kinda gives me a Beck vibe. Tthe B part didn't feel as strong to me as the A part. Oh, those are the parts. Hm I wish this had been a little more fleshed out with either a stronger recurring B part or a third part. I like what's here but it doesn't feel complete to me.

Ujn and Reve
Sludge rock! This is just ok, kinda too bombastic for me, particularly the drums.

Vom Vorton
Hm, this is maybe actually -too much- reverb for me in intro!! Good lyrics, I like the concept. The backup vocals I think are panned too far apart and too loud. The higher backup in verses is a lot more emphatic than the lower one so they sound a little out of balance sometimes. I love the cool outro. This one gets a vote too.
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Re: Is it all in my head? (My Favorite Monster Reviews)

Post by vowlvom » Tue Feb 12, 2019 3:12 am

lichenthroat wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 8:56 am
Vom Vorton—I’m not sure what this about, but I like it.
Thanks! It's about living with twin kittens.
Lunkhead wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 10:55 pm
Hm, this is maybe actually -too much- reverb for me in intro!! Good lyrics, I like the concept. The backup vocals I think are panned too far apart and too loud. The higher backup in verses is a lot more emphatic than the lower one so they sound a little out of balance sometimes. I love the cool outro. This one gets a vote too.
Good mix tips. I think I over-produced this one a little in an attempt to compensate for the weaknesses in vocals and (perhaps) arrangement that resulted from writing and recording while feeling unwell. The outro (and all the keys in fact) are a Casio PT-30 mini-keyboard! Fun little thing.
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Re: Is it all in my head? (My Favorite Monster Reviews)

Post by thirdcat » Tue Feb 12, 2019 11:05 am

misc owl: this is properly weird and I like weird. the vocals are very appealing (is the singer very young or just putting on a young voice?) the changes in song style are very unexpected and I think rather effective. I like this quite a bit even though it is pretty darn messy. I think for the most part the messiness works for the style. overall a vibrant song overflowing with ideas. you're getting a vote from me because I found myself interested and intrigued throughout.

Glennny: instrumentally this is pretty killer. although I liked that intro acoustic guitar so much I kind of missed it when you took it away. For me this is a song where if we were voting just on the instrumental this is almost certainly my favorite of the fight but the vocals I'm not crazy about. still there's so much cool stuff going on instrumentally (maybe just a tad too much, it's almost overwhelming) that I think I have to give this one a vote.

Pigfarmer Jr: Nice to hear you rocking out, sounds pretty cool! Rockin' guitar. and I think you did a pretty nice job with the drums, they sound good. Not crazy about the vocals but they aren't bad.

Vom Vorton: This is a pretty fun song with lots of interesting things going on in the mix. The way the guitar comes in before the shouted gang vocals reminds me of some kind of classic '70s songs, in a way that almost sounds ironic, but either which way - it works. Probably my favorite "My Favorite Monster" and a definite vote.

Lichen Throat: I like the deep vocals, I think this is probably a pretty good way for you to approach things. I would say that because your songs are so lyrically focused it's probably a good idea to make sure your lyrics are all understandable and on this one some of the lyrics get a bit blurred. Instrumentally this is more interesting than a lot of LT songs I've heard in the past. I like the strings. That string break is pretty sweet. I think you are on a path towards something pretty interesting. Have you listened to Leonard Cohen's 80s albums? your stuff kinda makes me think of that.

Paco Del Stinko: That heavy riff during the chorus absolutely slays. I love that. And the guitar solos are fantastic. The verse is good, but it's the chorus (particularly that riff) that makes this one of my favorites of the fight and I think one of my favorite Paco songs I've heard. Vote.

BSS: This is good but does sound slightly like BSS by the numbers (based on the 20 something BSS songs I've heard at this point) also has a bit of this pop-punk vibe which is a bit of not my cup of tea I guess. Still... this is well performed, well mixed, and the vocals sound pretty good. Solo(s) are cool.

Cybronica: I have a very hard time wrapping my head around this one, there's definitely some cool ideas in here but it's almost too original for its own good because I can't really relate this to anything else that I've heard. Also I think maybe the synths are too loud in the mix? They're kinda washing out the rest of the track. I love the ambition of this track. And I' m a sucker for backwards vocals. I think the mix kinda lets down the ideas - too much going on at once.

Ujn and Reve: This rocks. Love the drums. Bit on the short side, eh? Still; it sounds great.

Heine: The intro/Outro sections are a pretty fun rocker and I think the vocal works nicely, but something about the way the drums and the guitars interact seems a bit off and I find it distracting. The slower middle section is pretty cool and reminds me a little bit of Pink Floyd / The Wall era for some reason. But the mixing is a bit wonky and I find it difficult to get into a groove with it. Some cool guitar lines. Overall the timing/mixing keeps me from really loving the song but I appreciate the ideas for sure.

Reve and Ujn: I love this. But it's 26 seconds... making me feel like I'm writing epics over here. Still, what's here sounds really good. Fun song.

PJ/CR: Killer vocals. The "who wants to be my friend?" on the intro repeats at least one too many times for my taste I think. The mix is OK and yeah, with this kind of song you want the vocals up front but this one might have taken that idea slightly too far. I liked the deep male vocal coming in towards the end of the track, that was a cool twist that I didn't see coming. This is a song where I'm more impressed with the performances than the song itself. Again: really great singing. You've got the kind of vocals that people would like to hear singing the phone book. If anyone still had a phone book.

Third Cat: I'm happy with this one, usually I listen back to my songs and hear lots of things I'd do differently but I think this is pretty much on point. Could probably be slightly tighter, but in a way a bit of rushed looseness keeps things from being too sterile.
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Re: Is it all in my head? (My Favorite Monster Reviews)

Post by reve » Tue Feb 12, 2019 7:22 pm

My favorite monster was Vom Vorton. I was humming it to myself at work today -- well done! My second-favorite monsters were Third Cat (with their swankadelic wonderland) and Heine (who attempted something reasonably ambitious and pulled it off).

I'm always jealous of the superb musicianship that appears here, and this fight was no exception. Naturally, Paco and BSS are the standard bearers here. I'd say that I aspire to your levels of skill but... I'll never get there. So I'm not sure that counts as aspiration. Anyway, good on y'a.

On a more general note, I asked Ujn how loud to make our tracks and he didn't have an opinion. Because I'm a heartless person with a secret desire to destroy ears, I mastered our tracks significantly louder than I should have. But listening to the playlist... our tracks weren't comparatively loud. I'm not sure what that says about us collectively, but I'm pretty sure it's not positive and that we should all keep a closer eye on the meters.
-- reve mosquito.
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Re: Is it all in my head? (My Favorite Monster Reviews)

Post by Lunkhead » Tue Feb 12, 2019 8:04 pm

Song Fight has lost the loudness wars. That happened years ago. I'm guilty of slapping a maximizer on my master bus but I swear I only run it at 40% ;)
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Re: Is it all in my head? (My Favorite Monster Reviews)

Post by Caravan Ray » Wed Feb 13, 2019 3:39 am

Lunkhead wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 10:55 pm

PJ/CR
Nice song for being presumably some iPhone recordings or something.
Duuude..that's harsh!!

Not really.

OK. The story behind this song was:
Pepper texted me and said she wanted to record something for a secret project - it involved a penguin suit and sparkly guitar - Pepper can elaborate further if she would like to.

She came to my house with her sparkly guitar, I wrote an extra verse, we recorded in the lounge room, the sparkly guitar failed a bit - so I re-recorded guitar on my stratocaster while Pepper went off to campaign for musicians rights at the Queensland Parliament.

I had the bright idea that if I sang "you are my favourite monster" as a backing vocal - it would work as a song fight entry (and I stand by that decision - I think it works excellently to the title).

Pepper is now in Tasmania or some-fucking-where. Not sure if she actually realised I entered this in this fight? I may have mentioned it the night she was around - but she arrived late, and I had drunken a lot of wine.

Anyway - we were 2 days after the Monster deadline (queensland time) - so final production was a rushed job.
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Re: Is it all in my head? (My Favorite Monster Reviews)

Post by Caravan Ray » Wed Feb 13, 2019 5:36 am

Credit and above gets a vote


HIGH DISTINCTION:
MISCELLANEOUS OWL:
This is sensational. The mix is shit. There is there raw material here for something sensational. Give this to someone who knows what the are doing - this could be really cool. True - I am an old man and this sounds like something that would have been really cool in the mid 90s - but, it's all coming back isnt it? Whatev's - I am an old man with good taste - this sounds cool.

VOM VORTOM:
This is awsome. You are awesome. I recall last NUR EIN - my daughter loved your Superman song - she will love this too (she is a big TMBG fan). I have nothing else to say - keep doing this. (Oh - and BTW - I will be in England around May this year, in London and Cornwall - if you are somewhere handy - PM me - I will happily buy your a beer or a curry or whatever...same goes for J$ if he is reading this as well).

DISTINCTION:
PIG FARMER JR:
Very cool guitar. This is pretty awesome. ...2nd listen..that opening is FUCKING AWESOME!

There is (was) a thing back in the 1980s called "AusRock". Or "Beer Barn Rock". It was personified by bands like The Angels or The Radiators. This song is nailing that sound (well, if we can get rid of the annoying American accent and have a few more "oi, oi, oi"s in the background).

I really like this. The guitar riff is awesome. I wish I could do those. Good job PFJ. (My memory is failing me - I know you have been around for a long time - but we have never met in person have we? Apologies if we have - if we did, it was probably Portland - there is a lot of that trip I don't recall)

Anyway - the only thing I don't like about this is the lead vocal - and it is a good vocal - just a production thing - seems a bit dry - maybe need reverb? I don't know. Just doesn't seem to sit right - though it is a good vocal


LICHEN THROAT:
I like this very much. I like the guitar. I like the structure. I like the lyrics. I like the cello. The vocals are slightly dodgy - but I assume you know that. As another gravelly throated old bastard I am wondering if maybe I could nail it better. Happy to have a crack if you want to send me the backing music. (Sorry if that sounds a bit wanky, not trying to be offensive - just saying I like the song and it might sound cool with better control on vocals - Paco del Stinko would be my first choice BTW - it is really cool music)


CREDIT:
PDS:
Paco you old horse thief! You still doing this shit!!

I like the chorus. Very Alice Coopery. The whole song seems a bit Alice Coopery. That is a good thing.

THIRD CAT:
This is not unpleasant. I sort of like it. I haven't been around much recently - but I recall you were in my last fight and I compared you to Bread. That was cruel and inappropriate. I was drunk. I have re-started this 3 times since I started writing. I am liking it more and more. Surf guitar!! Everyone likes that! Then peel back to sparse - then more surf guitar!!. And vocal sound like They Might Be Giants. ..I am voting this IN!! It's a grower - good job.

PASS:
HEINE:
Heine...where do I start?!?
This is all so wrong. But also all so RIGHT!!

Such a mindfuck going on. I loved the intro. Hated what it turned into. You mentioned in you review of us you would like to collaborate - I am assuming you were referring to PJs voice - great idea - but I am also thinking I would like to add structure to your madness. Your song has a lot of cool things that I would mix together differently.

UNJ & REV:
Meh....
I do remember you guys and I am a big fan of both of you, but
meh...

REV AND UJN:
The Ramones visit Sesame Street. Sure, why not.

FAIL:
CYBRONICA:
Love the intro. It goes downhill after that

GLENNY:
Bad synths and out of tune vocals. No. Chorus picks up a little...but, no

BERKLEY SOCIAL SCENE:
Fucking stop it. Its awful. Edgy as a fucking nerf ball. Buy a Clash record. Actually listen to it.
User avatar
Pigfarmer Jr
Jepsie
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Re: Is it all in my head? (My Favorite Monster Reviews)

Post by Pigfarmer Jr » Wed Feb 13, 2019 6:01 am

Caravan Ray wrote:
Wed Feb 13, 2019 5:36 am
(My memory is failing me - I know you have been around for a long time - but we have never met in person have we? Apologies if we have - if we did, it was probably Portland - there is a lot of that trip I don't recall)
It's REALLY tempting to make up some story or other about how we met, got into some minor trouble with a waitress and had to tip an extra twenty bucks and play it off like you're shit for not remembering. But, no. We've never met. I've not met any songfighters who weren't already Fawmers (and then only a couple.)
I released my first album on January 26th, 2018.
Free download (for a limited time) or purchase a CD:
http://tcelliott.bandcamp.com/

Ad astra per alia porci - Steinbeck
(To the stars on the wings of a pig.)
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vowlvom
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Submitting as: Vowl Sounds, Vom Vorton
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Re: Is it all in my head? (My Favorite Monster Reviews)

Post by vowlvom » Wed Feb 13, 2019 7:56 am

Caravan Ray wrote:
Wed Feb 13, 2019 5:36 am
This is awsome. You are awesome. I recall last NUR EIN - my daughter loved your Superman song - she will love this too (she is a big TMBG fan). I have nothing else to say - keep doing this. (Oh - and BTW - I will be in England around May this year, in London and Cornwall - if you are somewhere handy - PM me - I will happily buy your a beer or a curry or whatever...same goes for J$ if he is reading this as well).
Cheers CR! I am definitely planning to keep doing this. I've been to Cornwall in May for the last three years but I'm not going this year! So that's unfortunate. But I appreciate the offer!
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lichenthroat
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Re: Is it all in my head? (My Favorite Monster Reviews)

Post by lichenthroat » Wed Feb 13, 2019 7:57 am

Caravan Ray wrote:
Wed Feb 13, 2019 5:36 am
LICHEN THROAT:
I like this very much. I like the guitar. I like the structure. I like the lyrics. I like the cello. The vocals are slightly dodgy - but I assume you know that. As another gravelly throated old bastard I am wondering if maybe I could nail it better. Happy to have a crack if you want to send me the backing music. (Sorry if that sounds a bit wanky, not trying to be offensive - just saying I like the song and it might sound cool with better control on vocals
I would be very happy to do this! I am aware that my vocal technique leaves a lot to be desired, so there is no danger of my ego getting bruised. Let me know what format you want the files in and tell me the best way to transfer them to you, and I will send them after I get home from work.
owl
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Re: Is it all in my head? (My Favorite Monster Reviews)

Post by owl » Fri Feb 15, 2019 1:44 pm

Ujn and Reve: I like those heavy guitars! Along with those drums the instrumental feels epic and menacing. Also +1 for Gojira and Cthulhu! I enjoyed the kind of psychedelic melody. However, this was over a bit soon for me, it didn't quite feel like a fully fleshed out song.

Reve and Ujn: Ha! This was a very different take and although it's half the length of the other one, it felt more complete to me, I guess punk just moves a lot faster than sludgy metal or whatever. I liked the slightly surprising ending. This was a fun and very cute listen and I enjoyed it a lot.

Glennny: The intro grabbed me right off the bat, but I found the synths a bit too loud, which is kind of distracting! I felt that the vocal melody kind of meandered and didn't seem to mesh super well with the instrumental for me, I'm not totally sure if this is just an execution thing or the melody itself... great harmonies on "he's always there" though. The outro is a highlight for me too, you play that outro lick with such confidence!

Pigfarmer Jr.: Great guitar solos, I really like the parts and the playing and the tone. And catchy melodies, this is the kind of song that gets stuck in your head. The lyrics are petty AF but it works well for the track! Nice job.

PJ/CR: Gorgeous vocals, they work well with the simple backing and really carry the song. I am surprised to be saying this since I almost never vote for fewer vocals in a song, but I kind of wish it had stayed with just the one simple vocal throughout, without the backing vocals. The lyrics are simple and kind of sweet and sad and I'm into it, particularly the freezer part. I thought this was a very pretty and haunting song.

Lichen Throat: I like that syncopation in your track that starts happening after "unexplored," I think your arrangements have been evolving in nice ways since the last time I heard one of your tracks. There are some really cool parts in the instrumental--I like where it kind of falls apart to strings about 3/4 of the way through. Normally I think your lyrics are the strong point of your songs, but I sort of feel the opposite on this one, they aren't really doing it for me this time around... I think I'm in the minority here, but they just feel a bit too straight and filk-y.

heine: My initial notes for the intro part said "hard rock Dracula?" It's very theatrical and a lot of fun. Personally, I like the interior song better, particularly the arpeggio guitar part before the solo comes in. It has a very retro power ballad type feel to me. However (and I guess this is rich coming from me, considering my two jammed-together song halves in my entry) I'm not sure the two halves work well together, although I enjoyed both... the beginning/end part feels sort of goofy in tone (maybe the "very small" couplet that reads a bit to me like a kid's song) and the interior part feels serious.

Paco del Stinko: I am VERY into that fuzzy guitar and the combination of 6/8 with a non-ballad-esque tone and instrumentation. Seriously sweet shredding, I really love the harmonized guitars. The chorus riff didn't really hit home for me alongside the verse parts, although it is well done--the key/mode shift felt unsatisfying after a delicious verse. Super well performed and put together though!

Third Cat: Ooh, I love the glitchy intro. "The sound is brighter than a star" is a really fantastic lyric. I really liked your guitar playing in this track, both rhythm and lead sounded very cool! As a whole, though, the song felt somewhat unfinished to me, I guess it felt a bit too sparse/repetitive, although it wasn't terribly long. I dig the laid-back and dreamy feel though.

Cybronica: I liked the instrumentation and really loved the backwards vox part, but wasn't really into the sort of medieval/operatic vocals, style-wise, and the melody didn't really hold up well to so much repetition for me. The style of music is kind of formal and doesn't lend itself well to looseness, so the parts here and where the lead and harmony vox went out of sync stood out to me, and I think the really high vocal doesn't blend terribly well with the low one even though I think each one sounds good. I really liked these lyrics: "Shapeshifter shaped by the shifting / World filled with cruel boys and girls"--the sound and rhythm of these is so good! In the grammar war between Paco's "my favorite monster is me" and your "my favorite monster is I," I think you technically win, but I dunno, "I" just sounds weird to me here. Descriptivism > prescriptivism

Vom Vorton: I commented on FAWM about this one already but I really loved it! The lyrics are just so charming (I guess it probably helped to know it was written about your kittens and not a literal 8-legged monster) and it's such a good, energetic, catchy listen. That high "beep beep beep" synth fading in and out is pretty cool, I noticed the guitars more the first time I listened, but that synth really adds a lot to the arrangement.

Berkeley Social Scene: I enjoyed this a lot, I thought it was quite catchy and appealing, especially the prechorus. The song as a whole gave me a lot of nostalgic feelings about pop-punk that I didn't even know I had! The lead vocal felt a bit loud relative to the other instruments to me? But well performed and the harmonies sound awesome. I am going to go against the flow here and say I really don't love the shouted gang vocals, I think it would have been better without, or at least with fewer of them, like maybe saving them for the chorus. And also going against the flow, I liked the lyrics a lot, the verses have a good balance of mystery and clear imagery, I particularly liked "she takes pills to keep up with the vampires," although yeah the "child" line does have a slight skeeviness to it even if it's not literally about a child. I loved the melodica!

miscellaneous owl: it me! (It I?) Thanks for all the comments (particularly @lichen throat, I'm flattered and I really appreciate your kind words!) I am well aware my mix and performance are kind of a hot mess, but I was pretty happy with this song overall.
thirdcat wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 11:05 am
is the singer very young or just putting on a young voice?
The singer is 38 years old, so I don't really know what to tell you, man :) Not specifically aiming for "a young voice," it's just the noise that naturally comes out of my face.
Lunkhead wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 10:55 pm
did you use a hi-pass,
lol
Lunkhead wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 10:55 pm
compression,

lol (I do have reverb on though)
Lunkhead wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 10:55 pm
Not sure if all the synths are quantized

lol

I have very little patience for the finer points of mixing that you all are actually paying attention to, but I do have an audio engineer friend who owes me a favor for altering a bridesmaid gown for her, so in exchange she's going to come help me with setting up some DAW project templates with compression/EQ settings that I can tweak from there. So I'm working on trying to fix the the very low-hanging production fruit at least.

Part (not all) of the issue with the intro is that I was having some latency issues with my MIDI controller when I recorded the intro that I think I've fixed now, but it didn't even occur to me to set the quantization, because I tend to just play everything live and it just kinda... goes where it goes. But I have now located the appropriate setting in REAPER and will strongly consider using it next time ;)
Cybronica
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Re: Is it all in my head? (My Favorite Monster Reviews)

Post by Cybronica » Fri Feb 15, 2019 6:36 pm

A bit late, here are my thoughts. Also, does anyone else have trouble listening to the stream? Whenever I try it, it randomly skips from song to song before cutting out. Happens on my computer too. Anyway, reviews!

Reve and Ujn
Utterly delightful, really right, well polished, stylistically spot on, evokes childhood memories, waaaaaaaaayyyyyyyyy too short. Sing it again, Sam!

Pack Del Stinko
The scansion is so even and regular that when you diverge from it, it really sticks out and sound like you tripped over the lyrics. Really clean recording, good vocals, i especially like how on “I ain’t got me a tune....” you kinda don’t. I choose to think this is on purpose, because your on tune for the rest. What you do with your voice on the chorus is really delicious. Awesome guitar. It seems like the song is about rhyming with a unifying theme of the chorus, which is totally fine, but you rhyme fool with fool. :0

Pj/cr
Soulful and sad, very well sung; the vocals have the same relaxed-no-jaw-tension technique that Rufus wainwright has and I love it. I also love the second voice coming in at the end with the song title. Good stuff.

Heine
I didn’t know Rammstein dis song fight... but seriously those bookends are amazing; I love it. Concept is cool. Love he middle section bass line. Well sung all around, I wish it had more of a play out.

Third Cat
I really like that synth that comes in out. It really matches the tone of your doubles vocals very well. I must confess I have no idea what it’s about, but I like the sounds of your words.

Lichen throat
I like the story, I like the cello, i like the layering of parts. The vocals are ok, but the harmony lines aren’t very clean. It feels like when you’re trying to fit the square peg in the square hole, but the hole is actually a rhombus. The plucked synth is a cool sound.

Misc owl
This is phenomenal, especially because I know the backstory (thanks for posting the song bio! It was a really interesting read). Your vocals are sublime. Really amazing, harmonies are great. I’m in love with your chorus lyric, “My favorite monster looks like loneliness
And loneliness looks just like a man.” Everything gels really well, the sounds are super well chosen, and I think it’s a really cool take on the subject matter.

Vom Vorton
Another adorable kitty song! Do like. I love how you describe them at each verse. That repetitive high pitches beeping that comes in and out is a little to high in the mix, i think. It takes over whenever I hear it; otherwise the mix is good. Well sung as always.

BSS
This def encapsulates the sound that was popular with my peers as a kid, but it’s not my thing. The mix is good, the vocals are stylistic, and the backing vocals are really good. I’m not a big fan of the lyrics either.

Pigfarmer jr
I like the whole sound. Your layered vocals gives the voice a new depth that we don’t always get, and I think it works really well here.

Ujn and reve
Yesssss love this one too. It’s so headbangy. Also too short. You could have just copied and pasted it over again before the play out and I wouldn’t have noticed (that’s assuming this was done into the computer and not in a single take).

Glennny
This song deserves an Oscar. Er, i mean it’s about an Oscar... This is a really fun song! It is a cool take on a childhood favorite. The melody is sometimes a bit out of tune, but the harmonies sound great. Catchy song

Cybronica
Now you’ve heard Mandibles without the talent! Just kidding, but I do think there were some bits that were a bit sloppy, most notably the vocals. There are some parts that are very clearly not lining up between the two melody takes, and a harmony that doesn’t quick click in towards the end. Otherwise, I was pretty pleased with this. The first part of the song to come together was the bass harmonics at the beginning, which determined the key and a bit of the overall aesthetic. I know some said that is seemed to be a little low heavy which checks out: it’s all bass guitar a low synths. I had a LOT of fun doing the bridge: I wrote a harmonic progression and improved something passable as a melody. I then took the bare bones of the chords and a demo of the melody and put the tracks in audacity, added 2seconds at the end, and reversed the clip. I then used the reversed melody demo to teach myself the backwards melody, and recorded it with the words (below). I had to be careful to have the first word start about 4 beats early and crescendo into the line. I did the melody twice and one harmony, duplicated one of the melody twice and transposed the duplicates down by a fifth and an octave respectively, added reverb, reversed the clip back to the original direction, deleted the harmony and melody demo tracks, added reverb again, and exported the audacity file as a single track that I plugged back into logic. That was the most fun for me on this song.
I really wish I hadn’t used that cow bell with the tambourine sound. I hate cow bell. What kind of monster uses cowbell? ;)

“I don’t think I’m a monster, but that’s what they think of me
I’m only afraid of what’s inside of me”
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