Recent Audio Reviews

Marbles Marbles

Rated 2 / 5 stars

I don't have a ton of time to write a review at the moment, so this one won't be super long.

Mostly I agree with what Chael said. The melodies really need to resonate more with the listener. The first melody is really strange, and some of the notes don't fit in with the chords. It seems almost open at the end of the phrase, which really shouldn't happen. The melody should lead into itself without a crazy transition. Also, the melody has a lot of outliers, which make it jump around a lot. I find that an octave is more than enough space to make a melody. When it starts going up to the next octave, there's only a few exceptions.

The mixing isn't too much of a problem, but that's because it's too empty. Most house songs have a bass of some sort, some base chords (usually playing the chord progression), a color instrument (something that catches instrument) and a few lead elements (leads, pianos, strings, etc.). You can add even more without it being too cluttered, but it's probably best to keep it simple. Another thing you may want to think about is better sound design. I have really been experimenting with it lately, and the sound creates the texture a piece has. Piano and saws really don't cut it for a house track.

The drop isn't as energetic as it should be. The drop should have the most energy, and everything else should be building towards it. It's really basic in this song and has no hook to it.

Mostly just work on melodies, especially if you want to make house. They are a large part of the reason I make house. I find that melodies will really just come to me, and if I force them they never fit, no matter how hard I try. There are a lot of things that will invoke it, but a big one for me is emotion.

Keep working on house. This was okay, but there are definitely points where it can be better. (And yes, this review is harsh because it's house.)


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FirePowerX responds:

Thanks kyron! well first of all, this is my first attempt of making a prog house, i was acctually looking up tutorials on how to make a prog house, it kinda helped me a bit on how it would sound like, but mabe it wasnt too right, i guess i can tell that for the chords.

Fiction Fiction

Rated 2.5 / 5 stars

Let's get this over with...

The beginning of the song is an obvious copy of Xtrullor (Jnana in particular) and lacks originality and creativity. I can also barely make out the words due to the amount of effects that were put on the audio. There were also fluctuations in the level of the audio, which made some parts especially hard to hear. Technically it's not a mixing issue, but better mixing and more careful usage of effects could have prevented that.

At 1:21 there's too much going on. There are too many 'main' elements which scrambles the focus which should be placed on one or two instruments, not a whole cluster. The mixing also adds to the confusion, as the elements I assume to be main are buried under chords and pads. There are a lot of things that can be fixed with better mixing, but there's just too much going on and the current mixing isn't cutting it. I think some of the problem is reverb, and to fix that you need to use low cut. Almost everything that has reverb should use low cut, and if you're not using it already, you'd best start.

Another problem I had with the mixing was the percussion. Where is it? You need your percussion to pierce through everything so much more. Your mix should be especially transparent for the percussion, otherwise it's going to get crushed under everything and it'll be barely audible, much like it is in sections of this track.

I really don't know how I feel about the drop. It seems really empty. There's a few lows, a higher screechy sound and percussion. I can't pick anything else out. Even with the few things that are happening here, there's still problems. First of all, there should be at least one mono bass, whether that's a sub or something else. It helps hold songs, especially drops, together. Second of all, there's way too much reverb, which I'll address later. Lastly, there just needs to be more.

Reverb is a very delicate tool. It will either enhance what you're making or destroy it. In this case, the reverb caused so many issues. It's applied to almost everything, which is normally good, but it was applied in a crude way, which made the mixing worse overall.

I don't mean any disrespect to the creators, but this song is a prime example of how overrated dubstep is on Newgrounds. This song is average and it's being treated like one of the best songs on this website at the moment, again, no disrespect. There were some pluses, for example, the sound design was much better than on earlier songs, but in this case I just felt like the negatives were more overpowering. This review may seem especially harsh, but I feel the need to make it a bit more harsh than usual due to the amount of positive feedback (and no, this isn't affecting the score I give you).

I can hear the potential. This song was pretty good, but the execution was poor overall, which caused me to give you a lower rating.


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FirePowerX responds:

I see what you mean there, its a little bit of similar to jnana but it honestly has its own mixing and different sounding.

Anyways i do agree that this has alot of reverb, but we were hoping this wouldnt sound a bit empty and could focus more on power on it.

Im also quite confused how this got so many plays and downloads, 2 days ago it had 29 downloads and 600+ plays or so, when i woke up yesterday i simply saw 1.6k downloads and 2k plays now, i simply dont know how could this get so many and featured so early, but thats probably just the GD that enjoys the song.

Thanks for the kind helpful feedback kyron, anything that you review improves.

Immerse Immerse

Rated 3.5 / 5 stars

To start, I don't understand how the Zelda ambience fits in with the piece. Why not just start with the piano?

My first actual complaint with this song is the strings. They sound so dry. Almost every element of a song should have at least a little reverb put onto it. I usually like to take the regular Fruity Reeverb 2, turn up the decay a bit, turn up the size all the way, turn the low cut up to about half and then mess around with the wet knob. This solves most things pretty easily without destroying your mix. It might even be the samples that are making it sound dry, and reverb isn't the issue.

The next complaint I have is the percussion. The kick sounds empty because of the lack of sub and tail. While it might fit in something else, the kick really needs more presence in this mix, and the sample you used isn't cutting it. The snare is the other problematic instrument. It has a high tone to it, which gives it a strange sound. It also cuts through the mix way more than it should, and it's pretty distracting in my opinion.

The main issue with this track is the drop. There's three or four elements to it that actually do something, and then there's a bunch of random, unnecessary percussive samples thrown in. I wouldn't normally mind, but the rest of the elements get out of the way completely to make room for the samples. Another problem I had was the way the saws were automated. It sounded like a really bad compression issue due to the location and nature of the kick, or a completely over-the-top sidechain. Remember, (if you were trying to sidechain) only lower elements should be extremely sidechained, and the main elements should only have a little bit. Speaking of lower instruments, this song had none that I could hear. It contributed to the drop sounding empty. Even a little bit of bass would have helped, but there was no (audible) bass. My final complaint about the drop is the faster lead you chose. I would have appreciated better sound design with it, as it sounds very generic and I feel like I've heard it a million times already.

The end was completely out of nowhere, and there wasn't even a subtle hint to what happened there. A new snare was introduced, hi-hats were also introduced, and a bunch of wobbly basses were introduced. If you're going to do something like that, either make it predictable or introduce it earlier. It also seemed like it switched genres twice there, with dubstep being introduced first and then having a trap feel right before the end.

The last thing you might want to check on is the amount of distortion that I could hear, especially near the end. It wasn't necessarily a clipping issue, but the texture really didn't fit with all the other instruments wherever it was. Just make sure to look at that a bit next time.

In conclusion, I heard quite a few mixing 'mistakes' that could have been fixed pretty easily. There were also some questionable choices made, especially during the drop, but overall the rest was generally solid.


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EtzerGD responds:

idk why i put zelda, kinda just for fun tbh xD

the strings definitely were a little to dry, they seem to stick out weird on the piano.
the composition definitely keeps needing work, I enjoy music that goes fast so sometimes I overdo it. I need to work on the bass, as you can tell they are usually absent in my songs xD.
Thanks for giving me actual criticism and not just a "I love the song!" post. I'll try to improve in future songs