Plz listen and critique

Discussion on new albums, developing listening skills, critical listening to others' work, as well as TOMB members' MP3 links, online recording critiques

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Jitters
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Plz listen and critique

Post by Jitters » Sat Jan 07, 2012 10:43 am

Hey guys, any impressions you might have, or thoughts for improving it would be appreciated. I just want to get better. Thanks for listening!

http://soundcloud.com/jimi-jitters/jimi ... years-high

E-money
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Post by E-money » Sat Jan 07, 2012 11:20 am

That song is totally awesome! One of the best things I've ever heard on the Internet. Great songwriting, great singing, great playing, great recording.

Please provide some details about what went into writing it and recording it.
The part that comes in around 40 seconds in sounds like an homage to "Space Oddity" by David Bowie.

Truly excellent, you should be very proud of yourself.
"Politics are like sports, where all the teams suck"

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Jitters
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Post by Jitters » Sun Jan 08, 2012 6:26 am

Wow, thanks! you just made my day...

The song itself is pretty old, and is based on a couple of my friends went to a ranch where UFOs were suppose to land every weekend and dropped a lot of acid. Something happened, anyway. One woke me up early the next morning and needed me to talk him back down to Earth and the other was just 'elsewhere' for a very long time. Even though I passed on the experience, part of me felt like I had missed out on something, and that's when I wrote the song.

I've tried playing the song in a couple of bands, but it never really matched what I was hearing in my head, so when I started recording I eventually did a demo of the song. It was pretty blah and sat there for a long time until I played a bunch of half baked demos for a drummer friend who really liked this one and wanted to replace all my programmed drums. It started to sound pretty good so I rerecorded some stuff and added some more stuff and here we are.

Certainly not an efficient way to make a record, but I'm glad the song stuck around long enough to get this far, as it's been living in my head a long time.

Thanks for listening!

EDIT: Yeah, you nailed it on Space Oddity. Same with the saxophone at the end. Haha

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Jitters
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Post by Jitters » Thu Jan 12, 2012 6:03 am

Anybody else care to offer up an opinion on this track? It got ripped to shreds on another board...

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Gregg Juke
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Post by Gregg Juke » Thu Jan 12, 2012 8:59 am

Hey Jitters,

Sounds cool. I like the impassioned lead vocal and backgrounds. The instrumental stuff is loose, but groovy kind of loose. Lead vocal slips and slides a bit too, but I think that fits stylistically... Cymbals might be a bit loud, but I'm listening on tiny, tinny computer speakers. Maybe bring the sax up at the end?

I'm guessing it would sound fine (even better) on a bigger system. Can I guess which board put it through the shredder? No, nevermind.

GJ

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Jitters
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Post by Jitters » Thu Jan 12, 2012 8:30 pm

Looseness is so unappreciated these days, no? Imma bring it back!

Seriously though, I've started playing around making loops out of a couple of those 16th note elements to see how that feels. I don't really like the whole 'nail everything to a grid' ethos, but I suppose a little tightening up wouldn't hurt anything.

Thanks for the ear, GJ.

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sears
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Post by sears » Fri Jan 13, 2012 5:16 am

Jitters wrote:I suppose a little tightening up wouldn't hurt anything.
Please don't do that. I'm not a good judge of what might have been compressed or EQd better (you can judge for yourself) but as far as feel goes -- don't change a thing. I think it sounds terrific too.

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Gregg Juke
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Post by Gregg Juke » Wed Jan 18, 2012 4:31 pm

OK JJ,

I listened to (I think) the latest version (I'm having some computer issues with updating/refreshing). Nice. I think you've improved it, and it was nice already. No major comments or changes other than two suggestions-- the punctuating crash cymbals are pretty up there in the mix; like, kind of peak-y/distorting/paxxed-out up there. Maybe bring them back a _touch_? My other suggestion would be just an arrangement enhancement: You know that Phil Specter half-time rhythm you're using on the verses--Boom, Boom-Boom, Bap... Boom, Boom-Boom, Bap (BD/Floor Tom accent is _1_[2]_+_3_[4])? I'm hearing timpani. If not all the way through, maybe a build-up at the end. Go ahead and really Specterize it. Just make sure that your revolver is unloaded.

GJ

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Jitters
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Post by Jitters » Thu Jan 19, 2012 10:44 am

Thanks Gregg. I am with you all the way on the timpani. Wish I had one, but I don't even have a sample of one at present. I'll get that cymbal under control. I'm gonna try to cut a fresh vocal and maybe even redo the guitar while I have a few days off.

I think I need to rethink my process. Maybe going from a rough sketch to a full blown production isn't the way to go. Maybe There should have been a sketch, and then I should have just started over, as I will have pretty much retracked everything by the time I'm happy with it. Or I should have been more careful with the tracking first time around. Who knows? I suppose that's the problem with wearing all the hats.

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Gregg Juke
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Post by Gregg Juke » Thu Jan 19, 2012 12:28 pm

Hey JJ,

Two things:

1) The "demo to master" concept (start recording a demo, replace everything with "better" parts, until it's a completed song) can work. That's how I did my whole first album-- programmed drums and simple parts as midi-map, with everything else replaced or layered on-top until it was done. It just takes a really long time. Sometimes it's better to do a simple demo, work-out te pre-production in rehearsal (or if you don't have a band, on successive demos or in your head), and then just go for it.

2) I don't have any timps handy (and as an aside, I seem to have lost my 16" Roto Tom!), but, I've got some pretty dad-gum good samples on the Juno G, and I'm pretty adept at playing/programming them too. If we can figure out how and when, I could throw some timp parts on for you (gratis, against all my/everybody's TapeOp posts to the contrary). Lemme know.

GJ

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Jitters
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Post by Jitters » Sat Jan 21, 2012 8:16 am

Sears, thanks for the kind words. I messed with it a bit, but I hope it didn't ruin anything you liked about it.

Gregg, I'll send you a pm.

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