SONGWRITING COMPETITION - SWC015 November 2018 - Winners announced

Thematic Songwriting Competition - recurrence: monthly
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Mister Fox
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Re: SONGWRITING COMPETITION - SWC015 November 2018 - Submissions until 24-11-2018 11:59pm GMT+1/CET

Post by Mister Fox » Sat Nov 24, 2018 6:38 am

Can you please add some documentation what tools you used? Thanks!

TrojakEW
Posts: 75
Joined: Sun Sep 23, 2018 6:15 pm

Re: SONGWRITING COMPETITION - SWC015 November 2018 - Submissions until 24-11-2018 11:59pm GMT+1/CET

Post by TrojakEW » Sat Nov 24, 2018 12:27 pm

Here is my attempt. It is some kind of hybrid as always.It was fun but mix is junk :lol:


Not sure how to make real metal so I just go my way. Used Three Body Tech Heavier 7 String+Guitar Rig 5 for main rhythm. Added NI Rickenbacker Bass to support H7S rhythm and again with another Guitar rig 5. For lead used OTS Evolution Stratosphere. For drums NI Studio Drummer. Also used 8DIO Agitato Legato Arpeggio to add some more energy with ostinato section and Tutti Vox for kind of "Epic" feel :grin: .

I have planned to add some Epic percussion ensemble and opera vocal but because I struggled a lot with mix with existing parts there was no time to finish it and added those.

List of instruments and effects (same as on soundcloud track description):
FLStudio 20.0.5

Instruments
TBT Heavier 7 Strings
NI Scarbee Rickenbacker Bass
NI Studio Drummer
OTS Evolution Stratosphere
Project Sam Symphobia
Sonokinetic Tutti Vox
8DIO Agitato Legato Arpeggio

DAW effects:
Fruity Stereo Shaper
Fruity Parametric EQ2
Maximus

Other Effects:
VSTzOne QUO
VSTzOne Amplio 2
VSTzOne Stratum
Izotope Ozone 8 Elements
Izotope Neutron Elements
Guitar Rig 5
Noveltech Vocal Enhancer
OrilRiver

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Mister Fox
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Re: SONGWRITING COMPETITION - SWC015 November 2018 - preparation phase

Post by Mister Fox » Sun Nov 25, 2018 3:23 am

It is the 25th November 2018, 2:00am GMT+2/CEST - this month's Songwriting Competition has official ended

Thank you so much for your participation - although I hoped to see more entries this month.

We had 7 participants, which is 3 entries more compared to last month (4 entries).
The "staff balancing vote" add-on rule does not apply
"Sole Winners Podium" rule (equal or less than seven participants results in a single winner) does apply.

There were no productions submitted after the deadline




:arrow: How do we go from there?

Over the course of the next (hopefully) 24-48 hours, I'll gather all links into one post and hot-link to that from the first post of the thread. So please, check your links again. Mistakes and hiccups do happen on the internet. We then perform with the "public vote" system.


We have 7 participants, those being: SBV, Mellow Browne, donkey tugger, GIANCARLO, intuition, ryanc and TrojakEW.
That means that each participant can vote for 6 tracks, the staff will not cast a balance vote

The Top 10 list (or Top 6 per participant rather) can look something like this:
01 (10 pts) - Mr Moon
02 (9 pts) - Mr Sun
03 (8 pts) - Mrs Venus
04 (7 pts) - Mr Mars and his companions
05 (6 pts) - Mr Hale-Bopp
06 (5 pts) - The Rings of Saturn
...
How your voting could look like, please take a look at these posts (sans the technical information):
https://mix-challenge.com/forum/viewtop ... 2311#p2311
https://mix-challenge.com/forum/viewtop ... 2478#p2478
https://mix-challenge.com/forum/viewtop ... 2819#p2819
https://mix-challenge.com/forum/viewtop ... 3522#p3522



Please also take note of the Rules and Guidelines on giving feedback (mandatory for participants)

Feedback from non-participants is highly encouraged (voting not needed!). Musicians and Engineers are always after constructive criticism. This is what this forum is about.



If you have an idea for a theme/genre or want to see a specific theme tackled in the future, please voice your opinion here:
https://mix-challenge.com/forum/viewtop ... f=11&t=168

Please also take note of a future yearly recurring Songwriting Competition idea:
https://mix-challenge.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=5&t=175



Please have an eye on this thread! :tu:

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Mister Fox
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Re: SONGWRITING COMPETITION - SWC015 November 2018 - Voting until 01-12-2018 11:59pm GMT+1/CET

Post by Mister Fox » Sun Nov 25, 2018 3:32 am

Let us kick off the VOTING PROCESS, which will end on Saturday, 01-DEC-2018 11:59pm GMT+1/CET latest


There is a GLOBAL COUNTDOWN to check for deadlines.
Just follow this link: Global Countdown (on homepage)



Here is the collection of productions from all participants:


SBV wrote:
Sat Nov 03, 2018 3:36 pm
"The Beginning"

WAV: https://www.dropbox.com/s/mjivsziz9jdge ... g.wav?dl=0
Mellow Browne wrote:
Mon Nov 19, 2018 5:44 pm
"New Borders"

Pack: https://drive.google.com/open?id=1hoYGm ... guRKBxlTRr
donkey tugger wrote:
Thu Nov 22, 2018 12:03 am
"Once upon a time in West Yorkshire"

MP3: http://www.bennyleeds7.myfreeola.uk/swc ... kshire.mp3
ryanc wrote:
Sat Nov 24, 2018 5:00 am
"Fighting Gravity"

WAV: https://www.dropbox.com/s/r6ia7tdvhsxnx ... v.wav?dl=0
TrojakEW wrote:
Sat Nov 24, 2018 12:27 pm
"Mortem Tua"



Please consult the last post of how your vote could look like (which links to more sources).

To make it easier on yourself, and more helpful for each participant, maybe focus on the overall production value. What you really liked with the song, what you'd like to see improved, etc.

SWC015 participants giving feedback to each other and casting a vote is mandatory, else you will be disqualified


Good luck to all participants! :tu:

TrojakEW
Posts: 75
Joined: Sun Sep 23, 2018 6:15 pm

Re: SONGWRITING COMPETITION - SWC015 November 2018 - Voting until 01-12-2018 11:59pm GMT+1/CET

Post by TrojakEW » Sun Nov 25, 2018 12:00 pm

At first I'm no musician and have to real skills regarding music overall. Take my voting and comments as a view of ordinary music consumer. After first listening it was clear for me who get the full points but the rest was almost impossible to decide.

SBV - The Beginning
Interesting intro. Timpany here are bad because every hit is same. No dynamic change in sound. However intro doesn't fit main theme and the transiiton is just covered with reverse cymbal. Mix is average and needs more work. Drums (except toms and crash cymbal) and guitar solo are completely in mid (mono) and rhythm is sliglty on both side. No stage here. Part from 0:20 - 1:20 is very similar to next one 1:26 - 2:25 and make it sound little repetetive. One of those could be removed completely. I do like change at 2:41 - 3:30.

Mellow Browne - New Borders
Mix is nice along with composiiton. It feels like underscore to movie scene. But now as it is without those moving pictures it feels empty. There is a lot of space for solo or something like that to fill that emptiness. But I like the theme.

donkey tugger - Once upon a time in West Yorkshire
Nice composition. Good movie like intro. Good "full" mix and stage. I'm missing more extended guitar solo. I liked the change at 2:07 but this change was too short. Nice heavy rhythm sound. Overall good balanced production.

GIANCARLO_-_Eternal Blackness
Intro here is not bad regarding atmopsphere but the sounds there completely ruined it. It sound too synthetic even for synth. I like mixing different style together but here sounds doesn't fit well with rest. Drums pattern at 0:25 - 1:40 is almost same whole time with few fills here and there makes it feels repetitive.

intuition - Abandon
Interesting track. What I miss here is little more low frequencies. It looks like bottom was cut of too much. Frequencies 2k and above dominate in track make it little harsh without lows. It sound like streamed and played back from cheap device that can play only freq 200 hz and above.

ryanc - Fighting Gravity
Mix is good with good stage but this track is more like pop ballad. Too soft and too gentle. If the theme was different then who know. For metal I was expecting massive thick and amplified sound.

My votes:
10 - donkey tugger - Once upon a time in West Yorkshire
9 - Mellow Browne - New Borders
8 - intuition - Abandon
7 - SBV - The Beginning
6 - GIANCARLO_-_Eternal Blackness
5 - ryanc - Fighting Gravity

donkey tugger
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Re: SONGWRITING COMPETITION - SWC015 November 2018 - Voting until 01-12-2018 11:59pm GMT+1/CET

Post by donkey tugger » Mon Nov 26, 2018 3:13 pm

Afore I start, a few comments about sampled guitars and the like (as I think most are using them here ). I'll preface by saying that I've got nothing against them (use them myself from time to time- the neighbours for some strange reason not being fond of my playing at 4am...). If I criticise the guitars then it's because i perceive flaws in the programming, not becauae I have anything in general against programmed guitars..if that makes sense?

Anyhow - here we go..

SBV - Nice ominous start and the proggy riffs are quite catchy. My criticism here is twofold. The guitars do sound quite 'fake' in that there's very little vibrato/bending, and no slurs/hammer-ons/pull-offs as a guitarist would do playing this. A bit of the human factor goes a long way..!

The other thing which struck me is that for a long piece, there's very little dynamism all things being considered - no real build ups within sections - ride that velocity on the drums etc!

Mellow Browne - A creditable attempt to expand your horizons given that you're not used to the genre at all. Some good ideas let down by the execution a lot. The drums sounds displaced from the music and the samples used are very static (for rocky stuff you do need a good kit with round robin sampling, so it sounds like a real drummer). Guitars sound quite false and the mix of them is very muddy - for the metel you want maximum impact! As I say, a valiant attempt - not sure I'd be as successful with R&B/Hip-hop..!

Giancarlo - Nice geetar sound! Not sure about this being the metel though - more pop/rock given the dance stylings of the drums. Kick drum isn't really sitting that well for me - needs more thud and less clickyness for my tastes. Was also waiting for some kind of solo (this is metel!). A good attempt

Intuition - I like the singing - shades of the Iggy Pop in parts (always good!). Guitars aren't bad in this -still sound a bit too precise but the sound isn't bad. The drums are a bit off mind - you can't play crash cymbals then go back to hi-hats that quickly! Again they're a bit one dimensional in terms of dynamics - even in the metel there's room for light and shade..

Ryanc - It's a nice song..but not 'eavy metel...In general terms it's a good arrangement and nice balanced mix, but I can't in all honesty consider it for this contest given the theme, despite whether I like the song or not! Pick up yer electric and turn up yer amp next time!

TrojakEW - I like the ambition towards overblown pomposity in this (wish you'd had time to add the opera singers!) Guitars not bad at all - the leads sound more realistic than the rhythm. Whilst I think the drums are quite well programmed, that drum sound isn't cutting it for me - sounds like they're upfront and in a small room whereas everything else is more reverb-y and epic - they need to be bigger and sat back a bit. A good ambitious attempt all in though

And the votes;

TrojakEW - 10
Intuition - 9
SBV - 8
Giancarlo - 7
Mellow Browne - 6
Ryanc -5

SBV
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Joined: Wed Aug 15, 2018 4:46 pm

Re: SONGWRITING COMPETITION - SWC015 November 2018 - Voting until 01-12-2018 11:59pm GMT+1/CET

Post by SBV » Tue Nov 27, 2018 6:35 am

donkey tugger wrote:
Mon Nov 26, 2018 3:13 pm
Anyhow - here we go..

SBV - Nice ominous start and the proggy riffs are quite catchy. My criticism here is twofold. The guitars do sound quite 'fake' in that there's very little vibrato/bending, and no slurs/hammer-ons/pull-offs as a guitarist would do playing this. A bit of the human factor goes a long way..!
You do realize the guitars are recorded with a real instrument? :hihi: :hihi:

donkey tugger
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Joined: Sat Jul 01, 2017 4:40 am

Re: SONGWRITING COMPETITION - SWC015 November 2018 - Voting until 01-12-2018 11:59pm GMT+1/CET

Post by donkey tugger » Tue Nov 27, 2018 6:59 am

SBV wrote:
Tue Nov 27, 2018 6:35 am
donkey tugger wrote:
Mon Nov 26, 2018 3:13 pm
Anyhow - here we go..

SBV - Nice ominous start and the proggy riffs are quite catchy. My criticism here is twofold. The guitars do sound quite 'fake' in that there's very little vibrato/bending, and no slurs/hammer-ons/pull-offs as a guitarist would do playing this. A bit of the human factor goes a long way..!
You do realize the guitars are recorded with a real instrument? :hihi: :hihi:

Ah, sorry, sounded a bit too perfect to me! Take it as a compliment then.. :hihi:

Mellow Browne
Posts: 10
Joined: Tue Nov 13, 2018 8:54 pm

Re: SONGWRITING COMPETITION - SWC015 November 2018 - Voting until 01-12-2018 11:59pm GMT+1/CET

Post by Mellow Browne » Tue Nov 27, 2018 4:29 pm

Wow, this was hard for me to judge, so I decided from an emotional point of view and if I could imagine the songs being played on the radio or not.

SBV - the beginning: very repetitive in most parts of the song, break is great though and brings some freshness to the composition but doesn’t fit to the main theme in my opinion. Abrupt ending of the song + composition feels very long when listening to. Mix needs some more work, it sounds too static.

donkey tugger - Once upon a time in West Yorkshire: nice musical composition, very punchy and in your face song, very nice mix, although I would prefer to hear the singers voice without distortion fx on it. I like the chorus, cool vibe. I find the song too short, I know you said you sort of rearranged it for the competition, but the „most“ part of it is intro/outro. I would love to hear a bridge with transition + another chorus to extend the composition. Has a lot of „radio“-potential in my opinion.

GIANCARLO - Eternal Blackness: good composition, I like the musical idea but in my opinion the singer is too shy/gentle. Another performance with more power and „dedication“ is the missing link in my opinion. Mix needs a bit more love and depth, and a bit more dynamics would be great, and I also find the vocals too soft compared to the instrumental. But it definitely has „radio“-potential.

intuition - Abandon: musical idea is ok, intro is very long, this makes the whole song very repetitive or it seems very long when listening to it. Don´t „feel“ your mix, I don´t know why, it is very static and at this status the production sounds like a demo to me. Vocals have too much distortion/fx, they are too dirty and thin. The singer´s performance is too friendly and sounds nasal. I really can hear the potential, but at the moment it is not convincing me.

TrojakEW - Mortem Tua: very epic composition, nice theme. Has a lot of impact at first but I´m loosing interest real quick, 2:20 min seems very long to me, although you used nice choir samples and brass hits to give some impact. I would love to have a „surprise“, it is too predictable in my opinion. Mix is good, big sound stage. No "radio"-potential but definitely as background music for a game (mortal kombat etc.)

ryanc - Fighting Gravity: The drum pattern BEFORE the chorus doesn’t´t fit the rest of the song, it feels like a totally different song to me in this short section. I can´t really tell you what I´m missing in the overall, maybe more emotions of the singer, even though it is a good performance but I don´t know why, it is not convincing me at this status. It is a nice pop ballad and I like/understand the musical composition, especially the bridge is very catchy, but it´s definitely the wrong song/genre to participate with, this is why you are the last on my list. Maybe the criticism seems to be very hard on this one but simply because I can really hear the „radio“-potential.

So, here we go:

10 - donkey tugger
9 - GIANCARLO
8 - TrojakEW
7 - intuition
6 - SBV
5 - ryanc

intuition
Posts: 12
Joined: Thu Aug 16, 2018 5:52 am

Re: SONGWRITING COMPETITION - SWC015 November 2018 - Voting until 01-12-2018 11:59pm GMT+1/CET

Post by intuition » Wed Nov 28, 2018 7:09 am

Today I learned that dropbox's audio previews sound like crap. When I played back my preview mp3 I was shocked to hear phasing in the hi hats and terrible sibilances that are NOT THERE in the actual mp3. I hope everyone downloads all the tracks properly to listen and judge.
donkey tugger wrote:The drums are a bit off mind - you can't play crash cymbals then go back to hi-hats that quickly! Again they're a bit one dimensional in terms of dynamics - even in the metel there's room for light and shade..
Not sure which part you're referring to. I'm a drummer and the drum part is fine. I'll give you that it doesn't have much in the way of dynamics (although there are a few ghost notes on the snare...) but that's power metal for ya :lol:

VOTE AND COMMENTS:

10 points
GIANCARLO "Eternal Blackness" - Incredibly cheesy synthy zombie metal. I LOVE IT. Production is spot on. I agree with others that the vocals are a little polite for the genre but this track is easily the best of the bunch. What's your background with producing?

9 points
TojakEQ "mortem_tua" - Really cool epic orchestral/choir metal tune. I wish the guitars weren't quite so mid scooped. There are plenty of separate sections here but they are all built on top of the same main rhythm riff, and that makes me wish there were at least one section with a different rhythm part. Musically speaking my favorite part was the part starting at 1:10. The low end (<=200 hz) of the bass drum is quite boomy compared to commercial tracks.

8 points
SBV "The Beginning" - Are you aware your high frequencies (like 5k+) are almost in mono? I like the individual sections and I think the track evolves just fine, although I wish there was more of a transition at 2:40 and an actual ending. The main crash cymbal sounds pretty weak and repetitive. The drum programming is ok, but as a drummer I would find that part unrealistically difficult to play. It's pretty sick that the guitars were played live. Good job with that.

7 points
Mellow Browne "New Borders" - The beginning is strong and reminds me of something Linkin Park could have done. In the next part when the drums are exposed it makes it too clear that they are midi programmed with little-to-no humanization/variation. That lead guitar at 1:15 needs to be louder. The whole song could be made more heavy and metal with stereo panned distorted guitars but as is it still works. Plenty of interesting and different sections. That double time on the drums in the second half gives it a powerfully different character.

6 points
donkey tugger "Once upon a time in West Yorkshire" - Once the bells are done it starts with a strong riff and good vocal melody, although they vox are way overly distorted for me and the next sort of ZZ-top riff (that goes under the "It's going off in the hills" part - I guess this is the chorus?) doesn't do it for me. I'm glad you included a solo but the song is over way too quick. There's really only about 2 minutes of music here.

5 points
ryanc "Fighting Gravity" - Beautifully played and sung but this isn't metal. I couldn't even see this as a ballad track on a metal album. Reverb on vox is a little too much in the beginning, and the vox don't "glue" with the rest of the track mixwise until about halfway in.

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