Reply To: Lamp Sessions (Monthly Challenge #001) – submissions due June 20 at 11:59PM UTC



I want to give feedback on each tune, then do some voting. And I’ll just throw out a blanket praise, that ALL of these tracks are nice in their own ways, and I love how competitive you guys are being with this.

In order they were received.

Juan/Joppa –
Really like the quirky vibe here. Like several little skittery animals, popping in and out of sight. That lead sound is interesting & blippy. If I’m throwing down critiques, I think it might be that the mix might just need some more oomph and energy. This tune is kinda straddling the minimal vibe, and I know that sometimes gets mixed a little differently than some banger, but I think there is still some opportunity to focus and highlight the hero sounds, make the bass a bit thicker & present, etc. I know I could say the same on just about every mix I’ve ever done, so it might not even be all that helpful, but if you were to keep pushing, I’d say give each sound its own space (they are already logcially falling into their own spaces) and then see what happens if you push/drive them in their freq ranges, until it just phattens up. The lead sound is quite prominent, so that one might work just fine as is, but there are some BG bass noises that could be brought forward a little more. Maybe more freq layering with additional FX, maybe some more width.

Adam –
Nice intro, spooky bizness and all. Nice drop into a cruspity, edged out bass line. That most prominent bass sound is pretty wikked. The reese or saw or whatever that is alternating with it just seems to fade away in the presence of that other hero sound. Might be worth trying to polish up the “response” sound a little more, cuz again, that main bass sound is stealing the show. I’m actually kinda interested in how you get that top layer, almost “desaturated” kind of sound. It sounds boxy, in a good way, and the tops give it a nice harmonic energy. If it were me, I might pusht that snare just a little harder, but that is certainly a subjective thing.

Harry/R4NSOM –
Almost jazzy, clean atmospheric open, and then straight to bizness. That snare could possibly use some more top layer love, it sounds a bit muffled to my ears. The kick sounds a skosh too loud to me, but I’ll admit that I am not the best at setting kick levels. My personal opinion is that a kick should sit comfortably with the sub bass, not being too far forward or behind it, gain-wise. Maybe it’s that the sub levels need to be pushed a little more? I do like the juxtaposition of the light and dark themes, very Metalheadz-y in that sense.

Target Audience –
Mmmmmmmmmm, dancefloor destined. Dark, atmospheric opening, previewing the madness to come. Drums are poking through well. A lot going on on top, but it’s not too much for me. The arpeggios (like starting around 1min) provide a nice energy. I could see them being used for a nice build+drop. Impending doom type pads are good for keeping the dark vibe going. Nice.

Balron –
LOUD. AS. F#CK. And dark. And pissed off. I love the stylee. My critique is that it’s a bit too loud, and I don’t mean overall RMS, I mean at pain point frequencies. A smoothed out top end will make it easier to listen to on blast. Currently it’s a bit painful when cranked up. I am also struggling against this issue. But I love the arrangement, and I love the “take no prisoners” and “I ain’t apologizing for sh!t” vibe. I listened to your other tunes on SC, and there was more loud dark goodness there. Brutal. I dig it.

Shrike –
(I mean, why not, right?) It was getting way too loud, esp in high freq pain points, but I (tried to) smooth it out a bit more last night. Also, all that was asked for was a ~1:30 min piece, and you (I) threw down basically an entire track, dumbass. Old skool vibe and arrangement which might not be everyone’s thing these days. Maybe kick is a little too far back in the mix? Gets a little boring in the middle, but again that’s just kinda the difference between modern drum and bass and a tune made 20 years ago. 8 and 16 bar turnarounds could be better executed, it’s a little half-ass now. I do love when that bass drops, though. Gets me every single time, and really I am talking about the original Warhead from Mr Krust, which this track is just emulating, so I can’t take credit for that. Also, it’s too long, but I like it when the drums come back at the end. Maybe snare is a little too hot? Work on that mixing, the mixing can always improve. Doesn’t really end all that well, just sorta fizzles out, but we said ~1:30 min anyway. Dumbass.

Do I really have to pick?

Ok, I will.

It’s a tossup for me, between Target Audience and Balron, and while I think TA has a bit better technical execution, I just really dig what Balron did musically.

So I vote Mr. Balron. But it’s kinda hard to pick, a lot to like in this bunch.


_-| get to work |-_

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